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Archivo del Autor: Belen De Leon

Elon Musk's lawyers say SEC is making 'unconstitutional power grab' – Roadshow

The Tesla CEO’s lawyers have submitted a court filing defending Musk against the SEC’s move to hold him in contempt of court.
Source: CNET

Elon Musk Says Tweeting Is Free Speech in His SEC Battle

The Tesla CEO’s lawyers argue the SEC has overreached in its attempt to see Musk held in contempt of court over a recent tweet.
Source: Wired

Elon Musk’s lawyers argue he should not be held in contempt for tweet about Tesla’s production rate

Elon Musk’s legal team responded late Monday, just before a deadline, to the Securities and Exchange Commission’s request to hold him in contempt of court over a tweet he made about Tesla’s production rate. In the filing submitted to a federal court in Manhattan, Musk’s lawyers say the tweet, posted last month, did not violate the terms of an agreement Musk made with the SEC.

“The Securities and Exchange Commission’s request that Musk be held in civil contempt for a single, immaterial tweet that dutifully complied with the Order and with Tesla’s ‘Senior Executives Communications Policy’ is incorrect on the facts and on the law,” the filing read. The policy refers to a court order that requires Musk to comply with Tesla’s pre-approval policy for communications that might contain material information.

The tweet in question was posted by Musk on February 20 and said Tesla would make about 500,000 cars this year. Musk followed it with a second tweet in the same thread that clarified Tesla’s annualized production rate at the end of 2019 would be around 500,000, or 10,000 cars a week, but deliveries were estimated to be about 400,000.

Musk’s lawyers write that he compiled with the policy, which allows him to “exercise his reasonable discretion in the first instance to determine whether his communications contain information requiring pre-approval,” but then posted the clarification after speaking with Tesla’s disclosure counsel. His lawyers claim this “underscore[s] his diligence” in complying with the SEC settlement, adding that Tesla’s projected production and rates of production for 2019 had already been “publicly discussed in multiple documents and discussed at length in an earnings call.”

Musk ran afoul of the SEC in August after tweeting that he had secured funding to take the company private. The SEC filed a complaint alleging securities fraud after Musk and Tesla’s board rejected an earlier attempt at an agreement. As part of a settlement reached in October, Musk was allowed to remain Tesla’s CEO, but had to step down as board chair. The SEC also fined Musk and Tesla $20 million each and stipulated that Tesla had to exercise disclosure controls and procedures over Musk’s tweets.

In today’s court filing, Musk’s lawyers wrote that Musk, who just before the settlement in October called the SEC “the Shortseller Enrichment Commission” in a tweet, has since followed the settlement’s terms closely and “dramatically reduced his volume of tweets generally and regarding Tesla in particular.”

“This self-censorship,” they added, “is reflective of his commitment to adhering to the Order and avoiding unnecessary disputes with the SEC.”


Source: TechCrunch

Stephen Hawking coin revealed, and it's out of this world – CNET

“I wanted to fit a big black hole on the tiny coin and wish he was still here chortling at the thought,” the designer said.
Source: CNET

Huawei finally has some good news: Mate 20 hits 10 million shipped – CNET

The Chinese tech giant manages to sell millions despite finding itself in a geopolitical quagmire.
Source: CNET

Captain Marvel postcredits scenes, explained – CNET

The first one is a doozy. The second one, cute.
Source: CNET

Russia blocks encrypted email provider ProtonMail

Russia has told internet providers to enforce a block against encrypted email provider ProtonMail, the company’s chief has confirmed.

The block was ordered by the state Federal Security Service, formerly the KGB, according to a Russian-language blog, which obtained and published the order after the agency accused the company and several other email providers of facilitating bomb threats.

Several anonymous bomb threats were sent by email to police in late January, forcing several schools and government buildings to evacuate.

In all, 26 internet addresses were blocked by the order, including several servers used to scramble the final connection for users of Tor, an anonymity network popular for circumventing censorship. Internet providers were told to implement the block “immediately,” using a technique known as BGP blackholing, a way that tells internet routers to simply throw away internet traffic rather than routing it to its destination.

But the company says while the site still loads, users cannot send or receive email.

ProtonMail chief executive Andy Yen called the block “particularly sneaky,” in an email to TechCrunch.

“ProtonMail is not blocked in the normal way, it’s actually a bit more subtle,” said Yen. “They are blocking access to ProtonMail mail servers. So Mail.ru — and most other Russian mail servers — for example, is no longer able to deliver email to ProtonMail, but a Russian user has no problem getting to their inbox,” he said.

That’s because the two ProtonMail servers listed by the order are its back-end mail delivery servers, rather than the front-end website that runs on a different system.

The letter, translated, says that the listed internet addresses caused “the mass distribution of obviously false reports of a terrorist act” in January, resulting in “mass evacuations of schools, administrative buildings and shopping centers.” (Image: supplied)

“The wholesale blocking of ProtonMail in a way that hurts all Russian citizens who want greater online security seems like a poor approach,” said Yen. He said his service offers superior security and encryption to other mail providing rivals in the country.

“We have also implemented technical measures to ensure continued service for our users in Russia and we have been making good progress in this regard,” he explained. “If there is indeed a legitimate legal complaint, we encourage the Russian government to reconsider their position and solve problems by following established international law and legal procedures.”

Russia’s internet regulator Roskomnadzor did not return a request for comment.

Yen says the block coincided with protests against government efforts to restrict the internet, which critics have dubbed an internet “kill switch.” The Kremlin, known for its protracted efforts to crack down and stifle freedom of speech, claimed it was to protect the country’s infrastructure in the event of a cyberattack.

Some 15,000 residents protested in Moscow on Sunday, during which users started noticing problems with ProtonMail.

It’s the latest in ongoing tensions with tech companies in the wake of the Russian-backed disinformation efforts. Russia’s crackdown on the internet intensified in 2014 when it ratified a law ordering tech companies operating in the country to store Russian data within its borders. LinkedIn was one of the fist casualties of the law, leading to the site’s nationwide ban in 2016.

Last month, Facebook was told to comply with the law or face its own ban. Twitter, too, also faces a possible blackout.


Source: TechCrunch

Man arrested after allegedly making threats against Google – CNET

Maine resident traveled across the country to confront the company after his YouTube channel was shut down, police say.
Source: CNET

Facebook’s ad team shoots itself in the foot by pulling Elizabeth Warren campaign ads

Facebook’s gang that couldn’t shoot straight advertising department has made another blunder, this time by pulling Elizabeth Warren campaign ads touting the Senator’s proposal to break up big tech.

The offending ads were pulled, according to Politico, over their use of the Facebook brand in their copy.

Meanwhile, other ads that the Senator’s Presidential campaign had run which addressed the plan to unwind various acquisitions by Facebook, Amazon, and Alphabet (the parent company of Google) were not removed from Facebook.

Indeed, the removal appears to be short-lived, but has given the Warren campaign ammunition for their argument and numerous headlines, tweets, and retweets.

“We removed the ads because they violated our policies against use of our corporate logo,” a Facebook spokesperson told Buzzfeed’s Ryan Mac. “In the interest of allowing robust debate, we are restoring the ads.”

That’s a good move for the Facebook public relations team, especially since the ads reportedly didn’t include Facebook’s logo.

But the damage has already been done. It provides fodder to Warren’s argument that big tech has too much power and control over the way information is disseminated — especially on its own platforms.

This incident may be a tempest in a teapot, but it will calcify positions on the left and the right about the self-interest of big technology and these companies’ ability to regulate content on their own platforms to the detriment of free speech — even in advertising.


Source: TechCrunch

Facebook temporarily removes Elizabeth Warren's ads calling for breakup of Facebook – CNET

The social network said it pulled down the ads for using Facebook’s corporate logo.
Source: CNET

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