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Microsoft adds a begging screen, Amazon sues over a Fiverr, Google Books a fair use judgment, Aurous goes offline, the Nintendo Entertainment System turns 30, and Louis C.K. has a rant.
Microsoft Pushes Default Apps
— Killer Kitsch (@killer_kitsch) October 18, 2015
Microsoft desperately wants you to stick to using the default apps within Windows 10, and it’s willing to beg you not to switch to using alternative services. Competitors have already called Microsoft out for making it more difficult to switch, but, undeterred, Microsoft is set to make things even more difficult.
According to The Verge, a leaked preview of Build 10568 shows Microsoft adding a new prompt to proceedings. If you have Microsoft Edge set as your default browser but decide to switch to Chrome instead, Windows 10 will ask you to “Give Microsoft Edge a Shot,” and remind you what Microsoft’s new browser is capable of.
A similar thing happens when you try to switch from using the default photo and music apps. Thus proving Microsoft is desperate for you to stick with its own apps. Which isn’t really surprising given that Windows 10 is free… Microsoft is a business, not a charitable organization.
Amazon Hates Fake Reviews
Amazon is taking a tougher stand against people posting fake reviews of products. Arguing that its reputation is being damaged by “false, misleading and inauthentic” reviews, the online retailer is suing 1,114 people it claims post false reviews for monetary reward.
The people being sued are all John Does, as the company does not know who they actually are. However, some are known to be making money writing fake five-star reviews for just $5 apiece, selling their services through Fiverr. Fiverr is not a defendant in the lawsuit, and is believed to be actively helping Amazon resolve the issue.
In its complaint, Amazon states, “While small in number, these reviews can significantly undermine the trust that consumers and the vast majority of sellers and manufacturers place in Amazon, which in turn tarnishes Amazon’s brand”. It certainly lessens one’s trust in Amazon when you take note of positive reviews, order a product, and then discover it’s terrible.
Google Books Branded Fair Use
— Bill Donahue (@Bill__Donahue) October 16, 2015
The epic story of Google Books rumbles on, but the latest chapter sees the Internet giant win support from a federal appeals court. Google Books, for the uninitiated, is an effort to scan books and make the text available online, essentially creating an online repository of the world’s literature.
In 2005, the Authors Guild filed a lawsuit against Google Books for copyright infringement, but Google won the case in 2013, with the court citing fair use. The Authors Guild appealed, and the appeals court has, according to CNET, now handed down the same verdict.
Google issued a statement saying, “Today’s decision underlines what people who use the service tell us: Google Books gives them a useful and easy way to find books they want to read and buy, while at the same time benefiting copyright holders”. However, the Authors Guild is likely to appeal the decision all the way to the Supreme Court.
The RIAA Shuts Down Aurous
— EFF (@EFF) October 13, 2015
Aurous has halted downloads in order to comply with a restraining order issued on behalf of the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Aurous, dubbed the Popcorn Time for Music, looks and feels like Spotify, but sources music from across the Internet through the use of public APIs, thus allowing it to be available for free.
Unfortunately, if you’re streaming downloaded music for free it’s probably illegal. And that’s why Aurous is the subject of a lawsuit issued by Universal, Sony, and Warner. The creators of Aurous are determined to fight for their survival, tweeting, “Our legal team is actively working to secure our place in the music eco system. Rest assured we want to be around a long time.”
The NES Has Turned 30
The Nintendo Entertainment System, more commonly known by the acronym NES, has turned 30. Or at least it has as far as the United States is concerned. The 8-bit Nintendo games console was actually released in Japan in 1983, but didn’t arrive in the U.S. until Oct. 18, 1985, hence the current commemoration.
Why is this milestone important? Because it’s a reminder that the video games industry, which many people seem to think is very new, is actually maturing rather nicely. The NES is one of the most important pieces of games hardware ever released, popularizing gaming for a generation that is still playing games three decades later.
Louis C.K. Rips on Technology [NSFW]
And finally, Louis C.K. isn’t the biggest fan of technology on the planet. In fact, especially when it comes to children using technology he’s positively against smartphones, video games, and other distracting gadgets. Mainly because they get in the way of good parenting.
Does he have a point? The footage used in the video absolutely shows that his concerns are legit, with parents choosing to interact with technology rather than their children. The question is what can we do about it? Love our children more than the latest smartphone?! [H/T Reddit]
Your Views on Today’s Tech News
If you have Windows 10, are you sticking with Microsoft’s default apps? How much attention do you pay to Amazon reviews? Should Google Books be considered “fair use”? Should Aurous fight back against the RIAA? What’s your enduring memory of the NES? Is Louis C.K right about technology?
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.