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Jul 22, 2022

Hey everybody, I’m Joe Miller and here’s what’s going on in the world of online safety and free speech this week.

Amazon’s $3.9bn One Medical bid Washington Post. Privacy experts worry about how Amazon will use healthcare data if the acquisition goes through – a deal that’s subject to Federal Trade Commission approval. The agency has already launched an aggressive campaign to rein in Amazon’s market power. 

YouTube to ban abortion misinformation


Clare Duffy at CNN Business reported that YouTube will stop allowing its users to post information on alternative ways to seek abortions, as well as misinformation regarding abortions. The move comes in the wake of the Supreme Court’s overturning of Roe v. Wade, and trepidation about potentially facilitating abortions in violation of individual state laws prohibitting it.

Car warranty calls now banned: FCC order


The annoying calls you’ve been getting about your auto warranty are now illegal. Hopefully, a new order the FCC dropped on Thursday will make them stop for good. The order requires carriers to prevent certain companies that make the bulk of these calls from being able to reach you. These warranty calls made up the number one complaint at the Commission. Brian Fung has the story at CNN.


TikTok parent kicks up lobbying spending


So if you didn’t know already, TikTok is owned by a Chinese company, Bytedance, which you should worry about since there’s no way of knowing how Bytedance shares that data with the Chinese government. And that may be your kids’ data. Lauren Feiner writes over at CNBC that Bytedance has kicked up its Washington lobbying efforts by some 130 percent, bringing its spending to over $2 million in the last quarter alone. The company opposes bipartisan antitrust and privacy bills gaining traction on Capitol Hill.


Uber to pay $2 million for violating disabled users rights


Finally, Itzel Luna reports for the LA Times that, in a settlement with the Justice Department, Uber will pay $2 million to disabled users it screwed over by charging them wait time fees. The company applied the surcharge for keeping drivers waiting for more than 2 minutes.


That’s it for this week. You can find links to all of these stories in the show notes.


Stay safe, stay informed, have a great weekend. Ciao.