The Switchboard: This bot helps Twitter prevent spam before it’s sent

August 21

(REUTERS/Kacper Pempel/Files)

Published every weekday, the Switchboard is your morning helping of hand-picked stories from the Switch team.

AT&T to deliver 1Gbps broadband to Silicon Valley. CNET reports: "On Wednesday, the company said that Cupertino, the home of tech giant Apple, has been added to the list of cities that will get its ultra-high speed broadband service in the coming months."

Twitter details its anti-spam system, BotMaker. Gigaom reports: "Twitter has developed a system called BotMaker to deal with its spam problem. Essentially, BotMaker scans messages before they’re posted, after they’re posted, and as part of bulk data analyses in order to determine what’s spam and then deal with them accordingly."

Google asked to remove 1 million pirate links per day. "In the hope of steering prospective customers away from pirate sites, copyright holders are overloading Google with DMCA takedown notices," according to TorrentFreak. "These requests have increased dramatically since Google began making the data public."

The real world is undermining Silicon Valley's apolitical fantasyland. "Like Hollywood, Silicon Valley has an idea of how politics works," I write. "And that idea is generally wrong."

How much should you know about how Facebook works? "An author of the infamous emotional-contagion study says it might not be reasonable to expect informed consent about social experiments online," according to the Atlantic magazine.

Brian Fung covers technology for The Washington Post.
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Brian Fung · August 20