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NAS:FB, Jul 16, 09:46 UTC

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The Return of Cryptocurrency Ads on Facebook

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Facebook (FB) plans to release its second-quarter results on July 25, a month after it announced a move that seems to be positive for its closely watched advertising business. Last month, Facebook eased its ban on cryptocurrency advertising after it had implemented a way to carry safe cryptocurrency-related ads. In January, Facebook issued a blanket ban on crypto advertising across its platforms as a way of protecting consumers from deceptive financial products.

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Facebook (FB) Boosts AI, Hires Google Chip Development Head

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Facebook’s FB strong belief that technologies like Artificial Intelligence (AI) will revolutionize the future and emerge as big business opportunities is helping the company take proactive steps in this direction.The recent hiring of Shahriar Rabii, Alphabet GOOGL division Google’s AI head of chip development reflects Facebook’s growing focus in this areaRabii was instrumental in helping the “lead team in charge of building chips for Google’s devices, including the Pixel smartphone’s custom Visual Core chip, which brought machine learning intelligence to the device's camera.”Building a Secure Platform With AIFacebook is building its own team to develop in-house chips, per Bloomberg, following the footsteps of Apple AAPL, Amazon AMZN and Google.The company’s efforts to develop in-house chips can help it better synchronize its hardware and software platforms.Facebook is expected to use its in-house AI chips in the future models of Oculus Go VR headset and in its smart speakers that are anticipated to feature video chats as well.Notably, Facebook has ramped up its efforts to secure its platform with AI technology following serious allegations related to fake news, data privacy and data misuse.In order to bolster its AI portfolio, Facebook has taken the acquisition path. The acquisition of AI start-up, Bloomsbury, which specializes in natural language processing (NLP), is expected to help it counter the fake news menace. Click to get this free report Amazon.com, Inc. (AMZN) : Free Stock Analysis Report Facebook, Inc. (FB) : Free Stock Analysis Report Alphabet Inc. (GOOGL) : Free Stock Analysis Report Apple Inc. (AAPL) : Free Stock Analysis Report To read this article on Zacks.com click here.

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Facebook’s Aquila Move Could Affect Spending and Strategy

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Until the first quarter, Facebook (FB) has spent roughly $23.4 billion on R&D (research and development) since starting work on its Aquila project in 2014. Facebook’s R&D costs had risen 18.8% YoY in the fourth quarter of 2017. Initiatives like Aquila may have been responsible for Facebook’s rising R&D costs, so ending the drone-building program may reduce its R&D costs.

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Monday’s Vital Data: Bank of America, Netflix and Facebook

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Wall Street has placed its focus on corporate earnings, with Netflix (NASDAQ:NFLX) and Bank of America (NYSE:BAC) taking center stage today. However, geopolitical concerns are threatening to derail market bulls. Additionally, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) was also popular at the end of last week after Jefferies boosted its price target on FB stock. Volume topped 557,000 contracts, with calls claiming 69% of the day’s take. What’s more, short-term BAC options traders were ambitious. For instance, peak July call open interest (OI) totaled more than 150,000 contracts at the deep out-of-the-money $31 strike. Facebook isn’t slated to take the earnings stage until Wednesday next week. But this hasn’t slowed down FB stock options traders. What’s more, analysts at Jefferies gave bullish speculators some ammunition yesterday.

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Facebook Fails to Stop Users From Sharing Pirated Movies

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Several Facebook groups are sharing pirated Hollywood movies to hundred of thousands of users and the social media giant's automated software are unable to stop copyright infringements, the media reported. According to the Business Insider, these Facebook groups make no attempt to conceal catalogs brimming with the latest blockbusters like "Ant Man and the Wasp" and "A Quiet Place." "These groups, some of which are years old, exist despite Facebook's army of human content moderators and automated software meant to detect copyright-infringing content, raising questions about the effectiveness of Facebook's content-policing systems," the report said on Sunday. Some of the group's titles are "Full HD English Movie" which has more than 134,000 members and "Free full movies 2018" that has 171,000 members. In its battle against pirated content, Facebook last year acquired a US-based startup Source3 to help it weed out pirated videos and other content that users share without permission.

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Saturday, July 14


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Facebook failing to remove groups showing pirated films

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The scale of the piracy problem on Facebook sees huge groups which have existed for years distributing videos of Hollywood movies, in breach of Facebook's own user guidelines and in spite of its thousands of human moderators. Facebook said it was not its responsibility to take down movies or other pirated content unless they were contacted by the rights holders. Within the groups, some movies are shown in full, while others provide links to other websites offering up free downloads or video streams. "If a rights holder identifies content on Facebook they believe violates their IP rights, they can report it to us at any time using our online reporting channels."

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Facebook, Twitter, Alphabet to testify at U.S. House hearing

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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on Tuesday to take testimony from Facebook Inc, Alphabet Inc's YouTube unit and Twitter Inc on whether social media companies are filtering content for political reasons, the committee chairman said. Conservative Republicans in Congress have criticized social media companies for what they claim are politically motivated practices in removing some content, a charge the companies have rejected. House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte said in a statement on Friday that he was pleased the companies will send experts "to answer questions on their content moderation practices and how they can be better stewards of free speech in the United States and abroad." Berin Szoka, president of TechFreedom, said at the hearing that "concerns about Facebook’s potential slant are best addressed through other measures, starting with transparency and user empowerment. Ultimately, the best check on Facebook’s power today is the threat of a new Facebook disrupting the company’s dominance."

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Friday, July 13


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Facebook reportedly hires AI chip head from Google

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Facebook is continuing to devote more resources to the development of AI-focused chips, bringing aboard a senior director of engineering from Google who worked on chips for Google's products to lead its efforts, Bloomberg reports. Shahriar Rabii spent nearly seven years at Google before joining Facebook this month as its VP and Head of Silicon according to his LinkedIn profile. It's undoubtedly a bold direction for the company though it's unclear how interested Facebook is in creating custom silicon for consumer devices or if they're more focused on building for their server business as they also look to accelerate their own research efforts. Rabii's work at Google seemed to encompass a good deal of work on chips for consumer devices, specifically work on the Pixel 2's Visual Core chip which brought machine learning intelligence to the device's camera.

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Facebook’s approach to fighting fake news is half-hearted

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Earlier this week, Facebook hosted a group of reporters (myself included) at its NYC office for a Q&A session about its efforts to fight fake news. It's a documentary that debuted last May, which tells the story of the company's uphill battle to rid its site of a misinformation plague that seems incurable. For months, Facebook has talked about how hard it is working to fix the issue (by hiring third-party fact-checkers, removing fake accounts and more), but on Wednesday it left us with more questions than answers. Facebook believes "people can decide for themselves what to read, trust, and share." And that, by flagging stories as false or lowering their ranking in the News Feed, they're helping people make that decision. But that's simply refusing to take responsibility for its own role in spreading the disease of fake news. When asked byCNN reporter Oliver Darcy why the company allows InfoWars, an outlet that traffics in dangerous and frankly insane conspiracy theories, to have have a page and promote stories on Facebook, Hagan said it was because the site has "not violated something that would result in them being taken down." During the screening of Facing Facts, there was a scene which showed a big sign on a wall at a Facebook office that read "With connection comes responsibility," a message the company keeps repeating in its fight against fake news. Yet, Facebook also says things like, certain stories don't violate its Community Standards "just for being false." Or, "We don't have a policy that stipulates that everything posted to on Facebook must be true," which should concern every one of Facebook's 2.2 billion users -- regardless of political views.

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Facebook Hires a Head of Chip Development From Google

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Facebook Inc. has sent another signal that it’s serious about building its own semiconductors, joining Apple Inc., Alphabet Inc.’s Google, and Amazon.com Inc. in trying to make its own custom chips. Rabii previously worked at Google, where he helped lead the team in charge of building chips for the company’s devices, including the Pixel smartphone’s custom Visual Core chip, according to his LinkedIn profile. Facebook and Google’s moves are part of a trend in which technology companies are seeking to supply themselves with semiconductors and lower their dependence on chipmakers such as Intel Corp. and Qualcomm Inc . Apple has been shipping its own custom main processors in iPads and iPhones since 2010, and has created an array of custom chips for controlling Bluetooth, taking pictures, and conducing machine learning tasks.

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