Tech News

Jail Time For Trolls, Microsoft Releasing Smartwatch, And More… [Tech News Digest]

Dave Parrack 20-10-2014

Also, Snapchat ads, Facebook censures DEA, the Android Lollipop Easter egg, and Titan City in Minecraft.


Trolls Face Longer Prison Sentences

Internet trolls The MakeUseOf Toolkit Against Online Trolls [Part 3] Read More who post abusive or threatening messages online could be sentenced to two years in prison, at least in the UK. This is due to planned changes to British laws which would see serious cases of cyber-bullying passed onto the crown courts, with the defendants facing a maximum of 24 months in jail.

The maximum sentence meted out for verbally abusing someone on the Web is currently six months, but a number of high-profile cases have led the British Government to crack down on those responsible. Justice Secretary Chris Grayling told the Mail on Sunday that this showed a commitment to “take a stand against a baying cyber-mob.

Trolls are clearly a scourge of modern life, but the problem is determining the difference between a nasty comment designed to entertain and a serious threat to someone’s well-being. Tone is a tricky thing to filter on the Internet, so jailing someone for two years for what could have been a throwaway comment is sure to be controversial. Let us know your views on the subject in the comments below.

Microsoft Planning Fitness Wearable

Microsoft is planning to launch its own smartwatch in the next few weeks, at least according to Forbes. The usual “sources close to the project” claim Microsoft’s first wearable device will be focused on fitness, work across a range of mobile platforms, and boast a two-day battery life.

With Google and Apple having both shown off their wearable plans — with Android Wear Google Android Wear, Moto 360 & LG G Watch, PS4 Virtual Reality [Tech News Digest] Android Wear for wearables, Moto 360 and LG G Watch, the NSA is MYSTIC, Xbox One expansion plan, PlayStation 4 virtual reality headsets, LINE Call for international chats, and the 'Unnumbered Sparks' art installation. Read More and Apple Watch Apple Reinvents The Watch, Unveils iPhone 6, Offers Free U2 Album, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, other technology news not related to Apple. Honest. Read More , respectively — now would be the ideal time for Microsoft to strike. Focusing on health and fitness apps is de rigueur, while the extended battery life and cross-platform status are both big positives.


However, this is still set to be Microsoft hardware, and the company has had mixed fortunes when it has ventured into the hardware business. This could be to the Apple Watch as the Zune was to the iPod. Still, we’ll know more if and when these rumors morph into fact. If they ever do.

Snapchat Now Has Ads

Snapchat Send Self-Destructing Risqué Photos & Videos With Snapchat [iOS & Android] So you want to text someone a private flirty or goofy photo or video of yourself, but you know that images and videos can be shared and circulated on the Internet very quickly. Well it... Read More has added advertising to the service for the first time since launch. The first ad spotted by Buzzfeed was a video trailer for horror flick Ouija, which appeared in the ‘Recent Updates’ section of the app over the weekend.

Snapchat warned this was coming with a blog post on Friday revealing that ads were imminent. The company is at least honest about its motives, stating, “we need to make money.” However, the talk of delivering ads the way they used to be “before they got creepy and targeted,” prompted some heavy criticism. And rightly so.

Facebook Goes To War With The DEA

Facebook has officially censured the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) over claims the latter created and operated a fake profile on the social network. Facebook sent a letter to the DEA making its position on this clear, calling it a “knowing and serious breach of Facebook’s terms and policies.


It was recently revealed that a DEA agent pretended to be a woman named Sondra Arquiett U.S. Government Hijacks Facebook, Kids Love Their iPads, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, Facebook owns WhatsApp, Vib-Ribbon debuts, Plex lands on Xbox One, and Homestar Runner returns. Read More in order to communicate with people suspected of criminal activity. Creating a fake Facebook account is against the company’s terms and conditions, and in the letter Facebook insists it has “long made clear that law enforcement authorities are subject to these policies.” That’s fighting talk.

Discovering The Android Lollipop Easter Egg

Android 5.0, better known as Lollipop Google Reveals Android Lollipop, HBO Battles Netflix, And More... [Tech News Digest] Also, Google Glass is addictive, Facebook Safety Check, webOS begone, Puls, and a Minecraft iPhone. Read More , contains a rather impressive Easter egg. It was discovered by YouTuber Sam Nalty, with a specific set of button presses revealing a clone of Flappy Bird The Short Story Of Flappy Bird [Weird & Wonderful Web] Few mobile games enter into the collective consciousness of the mainstream in the way Flappy Bird has done. It passes into Internet folklore, but these videos will help to preserve its virality. Read More .

Out goes the dumb bird avoiding pipes stolen from Super Mario, and in comes the Android robot traversing a world of lollipops. Let’s just hope this survives from the Android L Developer Preview Exploring Android L: What Exactly Is Material Design? You may have heard about Android L and Material Design, but what exactly is this new design philosophy and how will it affect Android and other Google products? Read More to the final version of Android 5.0.

Student Builds Titan City In Minecraft

And finally, an art student named Duncan Parcells has created a gigantic modern city within the world of Minecraft The (Latecomer) Beginner's Guide To Minecraft If you're late to the party though, don't worry - this extensive beginner's guide has you covered. Read More . His magnificent metropolis took two years to build and comprises of 4.5 million blocks.


Titan City is still a work in progress, and with Parcells having switched from Xbox 360 to PC, it could expand more quickly from here on in than it has done previously. Which is mightily impressive. [H/T Reddit]

Your Views On Today’s Tech News

Do online trolls deserve prison sentences? Are you interested in a Microsoft smartwatch? Are you annoyed at the introduction of ads to Snapchat?

Let us know your thoughts on the tech news of the day by posting to the comments section below. Because a healthy discussion is always welcome.

Image Credit: Woodleywonderworks via Flickr


Affiliate Disclosure: By buying the products we recommend, you help keep the site alive. Read more.

Whatsapp Pinterest

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

  1. Ben
    October 20, 2014 at 5:14 pm

    Shows how ill-sighted people are in tech.

  2. dragonmouth
    October 20, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    "Microsoft Planning Fitness Wearable"
    Another "me-too" idea from the great mind of M$.

    "Facebook Goes To War With The DEA"
    Very laudable of Facebook. Now they should censure the millions upon millions of fake private FB accounts. I wonder how many REAL, unique, live users would FB actually have if it eliminated all the fake ones?

    • Ben
      October 20, 2014 at 6:20 pm

      About the Microsoft me-too, people like that person and twitter and you, have no idea in Microsoft inventions and ideas. They are no "me-too" company. Google up Microsoft SPOT watch, Google up Microsoft Store 1999 and Google up Microsoft tablet 2000/2001/2002 and Google up Microsoft smartphone PocketPC 2000, and Windows Mobile 2003, they were the first real early smartphones and tablets of the early 21st century. Google up Microsoft glasses MSR/Patent 2010, before Google copied it with Google Glass, Google up MSN 1995, search engine and web portal, before Google existed as a company and Yahoo. ME TOO is companies like Apple and Google and others are the followers not the leaders.

    • dragonmouth
      October 20, 2014 at 6:49 pm

      Next you'll be telling me that it was M$ that invented the Internet, not Big Al Gore.

      Too bad M$ did not successfully develop those ideas. Apparently Sir William of Gates, the great visionary of M$, did not think they were commercially viable. Now M$ is trying to play catch-up.

    • Leah
      October 21, 2014 at 5:33 pm

      What are you talking about not successful? My previous computer was a Windows tablet and it was far superior to what passes as tablet these days. Windows had tablet versions of their software. It was much easier to write and draw on it than the tables we have today. I would have gotten another one but the convertible tablet is currently out of my price range.

    • Dave Parrack
      October 29, 2014 at 2:00 pm

      Rightly or wrongly there is the perception that MS is playing catch-up. I do agree with some of the comments regarding Microsoft leading the way in some areas, but the lack of focus always does for them. In my opinion they need to spend longer working on big ideas and seeing them through to fruition rather than throwing a load of shit at the wall to see what sticks.

    • dragonmouth
      October 29, 2014 at 3:10 pm

      I'm talking commercial success, having a large market share. iPad is associated with "tablet", maybe Galaxy, not Windows/M$.

      Better technology does not always translate into commercial success, as in Betamax vs. VHS.