Today in Tech News Digest, why you should stop liking brands on Facebook, Siri secures superpowers, Facebook finds Nearby Friends, shocking Lumia 2520 sales, Office Online in Chrome, and a Twitter parody gone wrong.
PSA: Stop Liking Brands On Facebook
If you want to preserve your right to sue a brand for any reason then you should resist the temptation of Liking them on Facebook. This is due to new clauses in terms of service which potentially protect brands from litigation if a customer has interacted with that brand in any way.
The New York Times cites General Mills as the first company to push this agenda, with the American food company claiming consumers “give up their right to sue … if they download coupons, ‘join’ it in online communities like Facebook, enter a company-sponsored sweepstakes or contest or interact with it in a variety of other ways.”
This essentially means that once you interact with General Mills in any way you have given up your right to sue the company down the line. Instead, you’ll be forced to go through arbitration to make your point, which will save General Mills the ignominy of defending itself in court.
Other brands are likely to follow suit, but it’s important to remember that the legality of these new terms won’t be known until someone tests the system. Still, to be on the safe side just avoid clicking that juicy Like button in the first place. Apart from the MakeUseOf Facebook page, of course.
GoogolPlex Gives Siri Superpowers
A group of freshmen from the University of Pennsylvania have managed to do what Apple seems unwilling to do: give Siri superpowers. GoogolPlex takes Siri out of the Apple ecosystem and into the wider world, allowing you to issue voice commands to other apps.
GoogolPlex is a hack that can be set up simply by changing the proxy settings on your WiFi. Spotify and the Nest thermostat are amongst apps supported, but those with a penchant for coding can create their own GoogolPlex commands for other apps.
What Apple will have to say about all this is anyone’s guess, but it’s fair to assume Cupertino won’t exactly be happy with GoogolPlex… Lawsuit!!!
Facebook Helps You Locate Nearby Friends
Facebook has launched a new feature designed to help you locate friends in real-time. Nearby Friends lets you share your exact location with friends, and offers constant updates to ensure you don’t miss each other.
Nearby Friends is opt-in only, and requires you and your friends to have it switched on in order to work. Initially only available in the U.S., Nearby Friends will be hitting both iOS and Android in the coming weeks.
Nokia Lumia 2520 Tablet Shocks In Europe
Faulty charger risk only affects 30k slates, suggesting Nokia’s Lumia 2520 has been a dud. Slick hardware can’t trump Windows RT, high price
— Brad Chacos (@BradChacos) April 17, 2014
Nokia has halted sales of the Lumia 2520 Windows 8 tablet in parts of Europe after its AC-300 charger was discovered to “pose a hazard of an electric shock.”
Around 30,000 users are affected, though there have been no confirmed incidents as yet. Sales have also been halted in the U.S., where the faulty product is known as the Lumia 2520 Travel Charger. Still, at least it isn’t a problem with the iPad, which would have affected a lot more than 30,000 people.
Microsoft Brings Office Online To Chrome
Microsoft is clearly on a quest to gets its products and services on other platforms. Just a few weeks after launching Office for iPad, Satya Nadella and co. have brought Office Online to the Chrome Web Store. This is direct competition for Google Docs, so feel free to let us know which of the two you prefer.
Twitter Parody Leads To Police Raid
I am well pleased with the brave actions taken by my Police force to protect you all from obvious parody… http://t.co/k6T81HOQtp
— Not Jim Ardis (@NotPeoriaMayor) April 17, 2014
And finally, there are countless parody accounts on Twitter, and most of the people being parodied accept them as an unavoidable bit of fun. Most people, but not all. The Mayor of Peoria, Illinois, Jim Ardis, for example, who appears to have embarked on a witchhunt against those responsible for a Twitter account parodying him.
Despite the account having been suspended weeks ago after posting less than 50 tweets, and the fact it was clearly labelled as a parody — meaning it should be protected under the fair use limitation — seven police officers raided the house in which they believe the offender resides.
Tech News Digest… Breaking News Into Bite-Sized Chunks.
Image Credit: Mike Vasilev via Flickr