Brussels seeks to demand more from Big Tech in revamp of internet rules

The EU is considering two-tier legislation to impose greater responsibility on Big Tech over removal of illegal content and the fight against counterfeit products in the first overhaul of the bloc’s internet rules in two decades.

The bloc’s preferred option is to adopt “asymmetric measures” where more is demanded from Big Tech to enforce policing of online services and the smooth functioning of cross-border digital services, officials in Brussels said.

The move comes as groups such as Facebook and Google are accused of using their clout to undermine European rivals and confirms Big Tech’s worst fears that the rules will hit them harder.

“Asymmetric measures with stronger obligations for very large platforms, further clarifications of the liability regime for online intermediaries and EU governance with reinforced oversight and enforcement . . . [is] the preferred option,” a leaked document said.

Big Tech, mostly Silicon Valley-based groups, are likely to see

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Unemployment claims drop, but Bay Area tech firms prep layoffs

SAN JOSE — Unemployment claims in California fell to their lowest levels since coronavirus-linked business shutdowns began in March — but a few Silicon Valley tech companies and at least one big services firm that caters to the tech sector have prepped new layoffs.

In November alone, Hitachi Vantara, Boston Scientific, Marvell Semiconductor and PayPal have revealed plans for job cuts in Silicon Valley, according to official state filings.

Despite the improvement in unemployment claims in California, the tech industry layoffs and weekly jobless filings that remain far higher than what is typical are disquieting reminders that the economy in the state and the Bay Area remains feeble.

“The California economy is in a suspended state,” said Michael Bernick, a former director of the state Employment Development Department and an employment attorney with law firm Duane Morris. “There is little new hiring and no economic uptick over the past two

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10 Top Tech ETF Picks For 2021

2020 will be remembered as one of the wildest years in recent memory, both from a financial markets standpoint and life in general. 2021, however, could be a different story. If the markets keep betting that a COVID vaccine will be available sometime in 2021 and the economy is on track for a recovery, it could be a big year for dividend ETFs.

Why? In an economic rebound, value and cyclical stocks tend to outperform – two areas of the market that are often overweight in dividend funds. Financials, energy and industrials could perform particularly well and that would provide a big boost to many dividend stocks, particularly high yielders.

But it will likely be a picker’s market. Investors probably won’t be able to invest in any old dividend ETF and expect market-beating returns.

Also: 10 Top Dividend ETF Picks For 2021

Here’s my list of top tech ETF picks

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Singapore wants co-investors to pump $112M into deep tech startups

Singapore is seeking co-investors from the private sector with the goal to plow up to SG$150 million into its early-stage, deep tech startup community. It hopes to identify 10 to 15 such partners and target startups in three key sectors including health and biomedical sciences. 

Led by Enterprise Singapore’s investment arm Seeds Capital, the initiative will tap funds from the Startup SG Equity scheme, under which the government may invest in funds or work with qualified third-party investors to make direct co-investments into eligible startups.

With the new call-for-partnership, Seeds said in a statement Thursday it aimed to refresh and diversity its current pool of 30 co-investment partners across the three deep tech sectors, including advanced manufacturing and engineering as well as urban solutions and sustainability. These market segments were aligned with the country’s Research, Innovation, and Enterprise 2020 (RIE2020) Technology Domains, which aimed to boost Singapore’s research capabilities and

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PreAct raises $1.6M from Sony, others to help prevent car accidents with crash-sensing tech

(PreAct Photo)

Car accidents kill about 1.35 million people worldwide each year. Despite more advanced collision warning systems now built into cars, crashes in the U.S. have risen more than 12% since 2011.

Now a Portland startup wants to curb those numbers with new crash-sensing technology.

PreAct raised $1.6 million in a round led by Alpha Bridge that included participation from elev8.vc and Sony’s venture capital arm, Sony Innovation Fund.

Founded in 2018 after spinning out of a defense contractor company called Artis, PreAct’s software uses near-field sensors to help sense a vehicle’s surroundings. The technology was originally developed to protect military vehicles from missiles. It allows cars to adjust suspension and seating positions to better prepare for impact. This video shows the software in action.

The 9-person company sells to automotive safety suppliers; auto manufacturers; auto insurance companies; and more. It also works with self-driving firms. PreAct’s tech will

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Lenovo DCG and DreamWorks: Tech Innovation Meets Real-World Experience

Cementing relationships with well-known companies is something most every IT vendor hopes to achieve. That is hardly surprising since doing business with organizations that are household names suggests that vendors are doing something right. Often that assumption is entirely correct, since successful companies can pick who they want to do business with and typically choose vendors whose products best fit their needs.

Landing a client like this and keeping the relationship on track qualifies as a big deal but so does being supplanted by a powerful rival. At Lenovo’s recent Tech World conference, the company announced that animation leader DreamWorks Animation had chosen Lenovo’s Data Center Group (DCG) to update its legacy data center. DreamWorks had a longstanding strategic relationship with data center vendor HPE.

Let’s consider what likely drove DreamWorks’ decision and why Lenovo is the right vendor for the job.

Links between Hollywood and Silicon Valley

The technology

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Qwake Technologies Funded To Fight Fires With AR Tech

The Department of Homeland security awarded Qwake Technologies a $1.4 million contract to accelerate the commercialization of the C-THRU Visual Communication platform, an augmented reality helmet targeted at firefighters which uses computer vision and augmented reality (AR) to boost situational awareness when lives are on the line. 

Qwake was co-founded in 2015 by Sam Cossman (CEO), John Long (CTO), Mike Ralston (COO), and Omer Haciomeroglu (Head of Design), who have a background in scientific exploration, neuroscience, firefighting, and product design respectively. 

“Over the last 30 years, firefighting technology has been incrementally improving, but now we have a real paradigm shift in how information is collected, shared and acted on – promising dramatic improvements in safety and efficiency,” noted Cossman. By creating a better tool for firefighters, resources can be used much more efficiently to put fires out thereby protecting more

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Clearbanc CEO on how moving to Canada fast-tracked his tech career

  • Andrew D’Souza is a successful startup founder running a company out of Toronto.
  • He says leaving Silicon Valley to work at a Canadian company accelerated his career because he was able to establish himself at a fast-growing company in an emerging tech ecosystem.
  • “Everyone talks about, ‘Do you want to be a big fish in a small pond or a small fish in a big pond?’ But I think the dimension that people don’t think about is how fast is the pond growing,” D’Souza said.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Canada’s tech ecosystem has been called many things. Silicon Valley North. Maple Valley. Even “the nice person’s Silicon Valley.” Call it what you want, but don’t count it out, says Andrew D’Souza, who runs one of Canadian’s hottest tech startups, Clearbanc.

He says that going home to Toronto after a stint in the San Francisco Bay Area turbocharged

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Tech companies are seizing the market moment

The biggest tech companies strengthened their hold on the global economy during the pandemic. Now, the industry is leveraging a moment of market euphoria to gear up for what comes next.



a person standing in front of a store: NEW YORK, NEW YORK - SEPTEMBER 22: People wear protective face masks outside Salesforce Tower as the city continues Phase 4 of re-opening following restrictions imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus on September 22, 2020 in New York City. The fourth phase allows outdoor arts and entertainment, sporting events without fans and media production. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)


© Noam Galai/Getty Images
NEW YORK, NEW YORK – SEPTEMBER 22: People wear protective face masks outside Salesforce Tower as the city continues Phase 4 of re-opening following restrictions imposed to slow the spread of coronavirus on September 22, 2020 in New York City. The fourth phase allows outdoor arts and entertainment, sporting events without fans and media production. (Photo by Noam Galai/Getty Images)

What’s happening: Airbnb and DoorDash could raise billions of dollars through initial public offerings, while Salesforce’s purchase of messaging platform Slack for nearly $28 billion is a bet on the future of work.

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This week has brought a flurry of tech deal activity as investment bankers help companies prepare for life after 2020.

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Trump threatens to veto major defense bill unless Congress repeals Section 230, a legal shield for tech giants

President Trump on Tuesday threatened to veto an annual defense bill unless Congress repeals the federal law that spares Facebook, Google and other social-media sites from legal liability over their content-moderation decisions.



Donald Trump wearing a suit and tie


© Mandel Ngan/AFP/Getty Images


Trump delivered the ultimatum targeting the digital protections, known as Section 230, in a late-night tweet that marked a dramatic escalation in his attacks against Silicon Valley over unproven allegations that the country’s tech giants exhibit bias against conservatives.

“Section 230, which is a liability shielding gift from the U.S. to ‘Big Tech’ (the only companies in America that have it – corporate welfare!), is a serious threat to our National Security & Election Integrity,” Trump tweeted.

Unless the “very dangerous & unfair Section 230 is not completely terminated as part of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA),” Trump continued, “I will be forced to unequivocally VETO the Bill when sent

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