Category Archives: Policy

Competition policy must change to help startups fight ‘winner takes all’ platforms, says UK report

A independent report commissioned by the UK government to examine how competition policy needs to adapt itself for the digital age has concluded that tech giants don’t face adequate competition and the law needs updating to address what it dubs the “novel” challenges of ‘winner takes all’ platforms. The panel also recommends more policy interventions to actively support startups, including a code of conduct for “the most significant digital platforms”; and measures to foster data portability, open standards and interoperability to help generate competitive momentum for rival […]

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Court dismisses Paris lawsuit against Airbnb for illegal listings

A court in Paris has dismissed a case against Airbnb, as Le Monde reported. Last month, the City of Paris sued Airbnb for 1,010 illegal listings. According to the mayor’s office, Airbnb failed to comply with regulation in Paris. Paris has been trying to limit the effect of Airbnb on the housing market in Paris. Paris is one of the top cities for Airbnb in the world. A few years ago, many people stopped renting their apartments the traditional way in favor of Airbnb. The average rental […]

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France overhauls its special visa for tech talent

The French government has unveiled a complete overhaul of the French Tech Visa for employees working for a tech company. And France is taking a contrarian stance by making it easier to come work in France. Let’s start with the big number. According to French Tech Mission director Kat Borlongan, there are more than 10,000 startups that meet the requirements to access the French Tech Visa and hire foreign employees more easily. (And if you live in the European Union, you don’t need a visa, of course.) […]

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NYC launches partnership network, “The Grid”, to help grow urban tech ecosystem

The New York City Economic Development Corporation (NYCEDC) and CIV:LAB – a nonprofit dedicated to connecting urban tech leaders – have announced the launch of The Grid, a member-based partnership network for New York’s urban tech community. The goal of the network is to link organizations, academia and local tech leaders, in order to promote collaboration and the sharing of knowledge and resources. In addition to connecting member companies and talent, The Grid will host various events, educational programs, and co-innovation projects, while hopefully improving access to investors […]

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China’s social credit system won’t tell you what you can do right

For the past few years, China has been rolling out a Black Mirror / Harry Potter-esque social rating policy known as the Social Credit System (SCS). Far from just a credit score in the financial sense, an SCS score can determine whether a person can buy business class tickets on trains (or take the train at all) or have access to flights. Apps are rumored to exist that would tell users whether they are standing near someone with a debt listed in the system, so … they can walk […]

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Has the fight over privacy changed at all in 2019?

Few issues divide the tech community quite like privacy. Much of Silicon Valley’s wealth has been built on data-driven advertising platforms, and yet, there remain constant concerns about the invasiveness of those platforms. Such concerns have intensified in just the last few weeks as France’s privacy regulator placed a record fine on Google under Europe’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) rules which the company now plans to appeal. Yet with global platform usage and service sales continuing to tick up, we asked a panel of eight privacy experts: “Has anything […]

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Daily Crunch: How the government shutdown is damaging cybersecurity and future IPOs

The Daily Crunch is TechCrunch’s roundup of our biggest and most important stories. If you’d like to get this delivered to your inbox every day at around 9am Pacific, you can subscribe here: 1. How Trump’s government shutdown is harming cyber and national security The government has been shut down for nearly three weeks, and there’s no end in sight. While most of the core government departments — State, Treasury, Justice and Defense — are still operational, others like Homeland Security, which takes the bulk of the […]

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The rise of (societal) resilience tech

If you follow millennials on Twitter (and god help you), then you know that Anne Helen Petersen’s piece this past weekend “How Millennials Became The Burnout Generation” struck a deep chord for many. It’s longform and detailed, but Petersen’s primary thesis is that my generation has been dumped into one of the worst moments for economic and social mobility in recent memory (global financial crisis, etc.), which has led us to massively over-optimize our lives to try to extract any value we can. Baby boomers could work […]

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How Juul made vaping viral to become worth a dirty $38 billion

A Juul is not a cigarette. It’s much easier than that. Through devilishly slick product design I’ll discuss here, the startup has massively lowered the barrier to getting hooked on nicotine. Juul has dismantled every deterrent to taking a puff. The result is both a new $38 billion valuation thanks to a $12.8 billion investment from Marlboro Cigarettes-maker Altria this week, and an explosion in popularity of vaping amongst teenagers and the rest of the population. Game recognize game, and Altria’s game is nicotine addiction. It knows […]

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Robinhood said to not be properly insured to offer checking & savings

Robinhood’s new high-interest, zero-fee checking and savings feature seems to be too good to be true. Users’ money may not be fully protected. The CEO of the Securities Investor Protection Corporation, a nonprofit membership corporation that insures stock brokerages, tells TechCrunch its insurance would not apply to checking and savings accounts the way Robinhood claims. “Robinhood would be buying securities for its account and sharing a portion of the proceeds with their customers, and that’s not what we cover,” says SIPC CEO Stephen Harbeck. “I’ve never seen a single […]

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