MadHATTERS HATTERs Bulletin Board Free trial

Ethereum disrupted by cartoon cats

6 December Subscribe
Tech news with a HAT perspective
Issue 55 

Beyond Gen Z

Ever heard a teenager say they wouldn't be caught dead on Facebook? (We all know Snapchat's where it's at, but more on that later…) Well, Facebook wants to nip that in the bud. Enter Messenger Kids: Facebook is aiming to catch 'em young.

You can barely go to a dinner party or to Twitter these days without someone lamenting the reach and prevalence of Facebook – so what does it do? It moves in on the 6-12 year olds. Facebook are now officially too big for ears. Or maybe it's just copying YouTube like it copied Snap.

But what about kids' data? FaceyB say they won't collect children's data for advertising, but things they will collect – for app improvement purposes – include the content of messages, photos shared, and what features they use. And all that will be shared with third parties.

Thinking about how commoditised a person's online self could be before they're 13 is unsettling to say the least; understanding ourselves as digital labourers – when that is the choice we are offered by tech companies – is one thing, but seeing a 6 year old enter into this contract is another. And it's not all about the data. The link between addiction and interface design is another hot topic, and it's barely being cynical to say this move from Facebook has the aim of socialising children onto their platform early. I wonder if Zuck's kids will be allowed to use it?

Geek Out

Remember Where's Wally? No need to play anymore, you can get a machine learning algorithm to find him for you. Here's how it works

The Doghouse

Security lax MPs. Spearheaded by one Nadine Dorries. Fail. 


Elsewhere on the web

Can blockchain fix Universal Credit? The Gov has linked up with a startup developing GovCoin, a crypto answer to benefits payments, claiming to avoid payment delays. Sooo, what does that mean for a new group of users transacting on blockchain, and the data that generates? In this model, who would have rights to the spending data of some of the most vulnerable people in the country?

If blockchain is disrupting the welfare state, then cartoon cats are disrupting Ethereum. Yes, it's really happening and CryptoKitties is an actual thing.

Snapchat falls to the algorithm. Snapchat's redesign means its feed will now include an algorithm, showing you different friends at the times the app thinks you most want to interact with them, and, yes, an infinite feed. Advertisers seems happy about the changes. The Guardian also did a long form profile with Mr Snapchat himself, Evan Spiegel, this week, so you can read about him wax lyrical about Damien Hirst, as well as Snapchat.

The Real Housewives of Silicon Valley. Google and Amazon are not speaking. And it's annoying everyone. Amazon pulled Google products from its store, so Google withdrew YouTube from Fire TV – actually a pretty big deal for consumers. It takes two to tango guys, and no one is winning here, least of all users.  

Leila Trilby, Editor-in-chief
HAT News

HATs in Bawston. HATs are going on the road, starting with the Personal Data Party in Boston next week! We'll be talking  about the potential of the personal data economy, the feats personalisation could achieve if we unlocked person-controlled personal data. We're all stoked about going stateside (with an event coming up in New York too!) so if you're in the vicinity of the East Coast, hit us up!

Me, Myself and AI: MadHATTERs Birthday Issue! We decided to do something a bit special to mark MadHATTERs' one year, and an exciting 2017 – so we printed a newspaper! (Like, an IRL paper paper). We'll be giving them out to anyone and everyone at our events (and the lucky people on the street near the office) so come say hi if you'd like to read about what we've been up to in 2017, or read it online!

Jonathan Holtby, Community Manager

Previous Issues