WeeklyTech #19

How to think about screen time and our kids

A new survey about tweens and teenagers confirms what most of us already knew: our kids are spending a lot of time online and watching video content. Common Sense Media released a survey about online video consumption and children last week that reveals that the percentage of those watching online content has doubled in the last four years, with the average child spending four to seven hours engaged in entertainment media every day. These figures do not include time spent online for homework, reading, or even listening to music. The increase of those watching online videos shouldn’t surprise us because many parents have similar issues with screen time and media usage, too.

Interesting technology stories

Survey: Number of kids watching online videos soarsAP News

The number of young Americans watching online videos every day has more than doubled, according to survey findings released Tuesday. They’re glued to them for nearly an hour a day, twice as long as they were four years ago. And often, the survey found, they’re seeing the videos on services such as YouTube that are supposedly off limits to children younger than age 13.

Twitter Will Ban All Political Ads, C.E.O. Jack Dorsey SaysThe New York Times

Twitter said on Wednesday that it would ban all political ads, putting a spotlight on the power and veracity of online advertising and ramping up pressure on Facebook’s chief executive, Mark Zuckerberg, to reverse his hands-off stance. Jack Dorsey, Twitter’s chief executive, said political ads, including manipulated videos and the viral spread of misleading information, presented challenges to civic discourse, “all at increasing velocity, sophistication, and overwhelming scale.” 

Digital life after deathWORLD Magazine

The crime remained unsolved, but the victim’s Facebook profile remained active. Someone murdered Jean Tuggy, 61, who lived alone, back in 2016 in her home just outside of State College, Pa. In addition to the tornado of grief and shock over her death, her family had to absorb the social media response to her death. Her daughter Bekah Tuggy Fisher recalled that the news rippled onto her mother’s Facebook profile page, where people were posting outraged and heartbroken notes. 

’Tis the Season for Surge Robots as Holiday Hiring Finds AutomationThe Wall Street Journal

The holiday hiring frenzy is under way and robots are joining the rush to seasonal jobs. Retailers and logistics operators facing a tight labor market are ramping up automation at warehouses for the holidays, when online order volumes can surge tenfold as consumers load up digital shopping carts in the weeks around Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Microsoft has beaten Amazon to the Pentagon’s $10 billion cloud computing contractMIT Technology Review

The news: On Friday, the Defense Department announced it will award Microsoft a 10-year, $10 billion contract to transform its cloud computing systems. A surprise: Amazon had been seen as the front-runner for the deal, dubbed the Joint Enterprise Defense Infrastructure, or “JEDI,” for much of the 15-month-long bidding process.