Kara Swisher

Este archivo solo abarca los artículos del autor incorporados a este sitio a partir del 1 de noviembre de 2006. Para fechas anteriores realice una búsqueda entrecomillando su nombre.

A New-Media Showdown in Australia

In the face-off this week between the news media and social media in Australia, I think I am on Rupert Murdoch’s side for once. Unless I am on Mark Zuckerberg’s.

It is an awful choice. Do I root for the wizened media titan who controls News Corp and his longtime efforts to wrest power from the tech giants that have made mincemeat of the journalism economy?

Or do I stand with the King of Facebook and the bedrock internet principle that sharing hyperlinks should be free and open, even though Mr. Zuckerberg’s creation has become the prime distributor of lies and hate speech, threatening to swamp us all?…  Seguir leyendo »

The Amazon-owned company Zoox wants to make robo-taxis a thing. Credit Zoox

You know how to Google, how to Uber and how to Netflix and chill. Now, can Jeff Bezos get you to Zoox?

That’s the plan. On Monday, the Amazon-owned Zoox is unveiling an electric autonomous vehicle as part of what will likely be an aggressive attempt by the company to make robo-taxis a thing.

That effort has had a rocky start for Zoox — as well as for Google, General Motors, Uber and several Chinese companies. They have spent billions of dollars over the last decade and suffered all kinds of setbacks, including management upheavals, technology snafus and tragic accidents, all in a quest to remove the driver from the front seat.…  Seguir leyendo »

People making a TikTok dance video on the terrace of their residence in Hyderabad, India. Credit Noah Seelam/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

I confess: I have a TikTok-designated burner phone.

The short-video sharing service sucked me in immediately with its algorithmically perfect cascade of videos that has been designed to entertain me for forever.

I marvel at how smoothly it works. I am even more gobsmacked by the creativity on display — by many kinds of people, both professional entertainers and just regular folks (and not just teenagers).

It is perhaps the best social media — with an emphasis on media — network to come along in quite a while. Simply put, it is a wonderful tech product.

Just recently: The shoe-jumping people.…  Seguir leyendo »

The Sri Lankan government briefly blocked Facebook in March 2018, saying posts appeared to have incited anti-Muslim violence. Credit Ishara S. Kodikara/Agence France-Presse — Getty Images

This is the ugly conundrum of the digital age: When you traffic in outrage, you get death.

So when the Sri Lankan government temporarily shut down access to American social media services like Facebook and Google’s YouTube after the bombings there on Easter morning, my first thought was “good.”

Good, because it could save lives. Good, because the companies that run these platforms seem incapable of controlling the powerful global tools they have built. Good, because the toxic digital waste of misinformation that floods these platforms has overwhelmed what was once so very good about them. And indeed, by Sunday morning so many false reports about the carnage were already circulating online that the Sri Lankan government worried more violence would follow.…  Seguir leyendo »

Amazon Isn’t Interested in Making the World a Better Place

The announcement on Thursday that Amazon has canceled its plan to build a headquarters in New York City is no victory. It’s no defeat, either.

What it is, to use a Big Apple term, is meh, yet another indication that the dulcet attractions of tech have lost their charm for many and that the business — which has been this country’s most innovative and promising and often its most inspirational — is just that: a business, like any other, out for itself and itself alone, and most definitely not changing the world for the better.

That was the cry of tech from its start — especially of the internet types like the Amazon head, Jeff Bezos.…  Seguir leyendo »

At Google’s headquarters in Mountain View, Calif., several thousand employees walked out last week to protest how the company has handled reports of sexual harassment. Credit Jim Wilson/The New York Times

One, they said, was a “good guy.” Another didn’t deserve to have his life ruined because of his indiscretion. Still another might walk his giant cache of tech knowledge over to a competitor, and that would not stand.

These were the inane reasons put forward over the years by top Google executives for a series of hush-hush agreements and payoffs to far too many high-ranking men who had been accused of sexual harassment, according to numerous sources who were in the private meetings where the decisions were debated.

What didn’t happen — not even once — was for these leaders to publicly discipline or fire anyone for allegations that included executives: groping a female colleague at a party without her consent; asking a Google barista to lick her lips for him; slipping a mickey to a female employee and trying — without success, fortunately — to lead her away from an event.…  Seguir leyendo »

The Real Google Censorship Scandal

This week on the right-wing site Breitbart News, a video surfaced of one of Google’s weekly “T.G.I.F.” meetings, where employees and the leadership engage in heated debates over everything from healthier snack stations to the election of Donald Trump.

Breitbart News described the 2016 video as a “smoking gun” because it showed Sergey Brin, the Google co-founder, telling everyone how he felt about the new leader of the free world.

Spoiler: Not good.

“Myself, as an immigrant, as a refugee, I certainly find this election deeply offensive, and I know many of you do, too,” he said in his flat, nasal voice.…  Seguir leyendo »