(LINK) China, Leverage, and Values – Stratechery by Ben Thompson

China, Leverage, and Values – Stratechery by Ben Thompson:

On the other hand, for all of the praise that is heaped on Chinese service companies like Tencent for their innovation, the fact that everything on Tencent is monitored and censored is chilling, particularly when people disappear. The possibilities of a central government creating the conditions for, say, self-driving cars or some other top-down application of technology is appealing, but turning a city into a prison through surveillance is terrifying. And while it is tempting to fantasize about removing “fake news” and hateful content with an iron fist, it is a step down the road to removing everything that is objectionable to an unaccountable authority with little more than an adjustment to a configuration file.

This is the true war when it comes to technology: censorship versus openness, control versus creativity, and centralization versus competition. These are, of course, connected: China’s censorship is about control facilitated by centralization. That, though, should not only give Western tech companies and investors pause about China generally, but should also led to serious introspection about the appropriate policies towards our own tech industry. Openness, creativity, and competition are just as related as their counterparts, and infringement on any one of them should be taken as a threat to all three.

Ben does a great job of nailing the crux of the issue for this so-called China/USA trade war.

IMHO too much praise is given to Chinese companies for their success in China, which essentially has zero outside competition. We know why they do this, but to purport that their products are the best or the right way to do it is too simplistic for my liking.

China wants to control everything, so they do this via Chinese companies and how they operate. Excellent for China – not great for outside China.

At the core is censorship for one and human rights. China has a pretty bad record for both, but I am not saying other countries are not guilty as well.

Moreover, the Huawei stuff is just the canary in the coal mine and a bargaining chip to some extent. However, I do think countries need to be vigilant and realize the full extent of what Chinese tech could enable – both the good and the bad.


(LINK) Public Speaking – AVC

Public Speaking – AVC

This is good. I love his three tips:

I have three main rules that I try to live by:

  1. Be brief. It is possible to make a point in less than a minute. But many take five or ten minutes to do it. In a world where people take their phones out the minute they are bored, you simply can’t take a long time to make a point.
  2. Be bold. Stake out positions that will stimulate debate and get people talking. I am not suggesting that you should take a position you don’t believe in. But I do think it is important to go out on a limb from time to time.
  3. Have fun. Show your personality. Smile. Laugh. Enjoy it. The audience will pick up on that and it will make it more fun for everyone.

(My Take) Garage: News, Insights & Reports – THE BUSINESS TIMES

Garage: News, Insights & Reports – THE BUSINESS TIMES

I missed this one but thank to Splice for the link.

Looks nice and good to see a traditional rag jump in a do something in tech.

However the reporting feels a bit light and fluffy to me. Take this one:


I wonder if any of these reporters actually try the service and properly critique it versus just reprint the press release?

I have tried TADA more than a few times now – its frankly terrible.

All good to have new press on the tech scene but still hoping for writers to dig in a little more.

Like this :: https://e27.co/the-world-should-wish-the-singapore-fake-news-law-is-fake-news-20190404/

(LINK) Breaking news from Myanmar; Mueller’s silence; Zuckerberg’s groups; Amazon’s new idea; Trebek’s speech; CNN’s new office; Met Ball highlights

Breaking news from Myanmar; Mueller’s silence; Zuckerberg’s groups; Amazon’s new idea; Trebek’s speech; CNN’s new office; Met Ball highlights:

Reuters reporters freed in Myanmar

Here’s the alert from Reuters: “Two Reuters journalists jailed in Myanmar after they were convicted of breaking the Official Secrets Act walked free from a prison on the outskirts of Yangon on Tuesday after spending more than 500 days behind bars, witnesses said.”

One of the witnesses was Gerry Doyle, who tweeted, “Wa Lone and Kyaw Soe Oo are free.” He added: “There’s a lot left to sort out, but the important part, for now, is that they are free.”

Finally. Editor in chief Stephen J. Adler issued the statement that he’s been waiting more than a year to send out: “We are enormously pleased that Myanmar has released our courageous reporters…”

Huge. Wonder what happened.

Still ridiculous they spent even a day in jail though.