Evening Reading - October 30, 2019

It's time for ER, Shackers! Check it out.

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Hey Shacknews, it's time for Evening Reading with a brand new spiffy header image. Let's officially close out our day of posting. Please take a look.


Kenny Omega comes out as Sans on AEW Dynamite

Kenny Omega came out as Sans to an Undertale-inspired video aimed at New Japan Pro Wrestling. It's simply awesome. Thanks to Ozzie Mejia for bringing this to my attention.


Final Fantasy XIV played via brain implants

My favorite champion of accessibility, Steven Spohn, tweeted about this today. It is just awesome to see people be able to play games with all sorts of new input methods.


That dog's still a hero, but that picture is shopped

Side-by-side pictures that show the president tweeted out a fake picture.
Side-by-side pictures that show the president tweeted out a fake picture.

The president tweeted out a fake photo of a dog receiving a medal today. You can't make this stuff up. 


Twitter to stop running political ads

Here's the transcript of the tweet thread from Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey:

We’ve made the decision to stop all political advertising on Twitter globally. We believe political message reach should be earned, not bought. Why? A few reasons… 

A political message earns reach when people decide to follow an account or retweet. Paying for reach removes that decision, forcing highly optimized and targeted political messages on people. We believe this decision should not be compromised by money. While internet advertising is incredibly powerful and very effective for commercial advertisers, that power brings significant risks to politics, where it can be used to influence votes to affect the lives of millions. Internet political ads present entirely new challenges to civic discourse: machine learning-based optimization of messaging and micro-targeting, unchecked misleading information, and deep fakes. All at increasing velocity, sophistication, and overwhelming scale.

These challenges will affect ALL internet communication, not just political ads. Best to focus our efforts on the root problems, without the additional burden and complexity taking money brings. Trying to fix both means fixing neither well, and harms our credibility. For instance, it‘s not credible for us to say: “We’re working hard to stop people from gaming our systems to spread misleading info, buuut if someone pays us to target and force people to see their political ad…well...they can say whatever they want!  

We considered stopping only candidate ads, but issue ads present a way to circumvent. Additionally, it isn’t fair for everyone but candidates to buy ads for issues they want to push. So we're stopping these too. We’re well aware we‘re a small part of a much larger political advertising ecosystem. Some might argue our actions today could favor incumbents. But we have witnessed many social movements reach massive scale without any political advertising. I trust this will only grow.

In addition, we need more forward-looking political ad regulation (very difficult to do). Ad transparency requirements are progress, but not enough. The internet provides entirely new capabilities, and regulators need to think past the present day to ensure a level playing field. We’ll share the final policy by 11/15, including a few exceptions (ads in support of voter registration will still be allowed, for instance). We’ll start enforcing our new policy on 11/22 to provide current advertisers a notice period before this change goes into effect.

A final note. This isn’t about free expression. This is about paying for reach. And paying to increase the reach of political speech has significant ramifications that today’s democratic infrastructure may not be prepared to handle. It’s worth stepping back in order to address.


Fed cuts rates, Apple and Facebook rise on earnings reports

Long-term chart of UVXY. LOL.
Long-term chart of UVXY. LOL.

The Federal Reserve cut rates again for the third time this year. Apple (AAPL) reported muted revenue and earnings growth, while Facebook (FB) continues to make bank off of all those politcal ads paid for in rubles.


In case you missed it at Shacknews:


There you have it, Shacknews. Your Evening Reading for October 30, 2019. Please consider subscribing to Shacknews Mercury to support our site for as little as $1/month. Here is a video of Lola to brighten your night.

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CEO

Asif Khan is the CEO and majority shareholder of Shacknews. He began his career in video game journalism as a freelancer in 2001 for Tendobox.com. Asif is a CPA and was formerly an investment adviser representative. After much success in his own personal investments, he retired from his day job in financial services and is currently focused on new private investments. His favorite PC game of all time is Duke Nukem 3D, and he is an unapologetic fan of most things Nintendo. Asif first frequented the Shack when it was sCary's Shugashack to find all things Quake. When he is not immersed in investments or gaming he is a purveyor of fine electronic music. Asif also has an irrational love of Cleveland sports.

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