Welcome to the Mozilla News Beat, a glance at the best and worst internet news this week. This is our penultimate issue! Tune in next week for the final News Beat. Enjoy!
Nature, we love you but man, are you weird sometimes. This aardvark is Halloween ready and has its pumpkin all picked out. We’d say sound on but honestly, this one you might be better off leaving on mute. (Shiver)
Be Kind To Animals, Folks
We love animals here at the News Beat — every week we feature them at the top of the newsletter (even awkward aardvarks). That’s why it pains us to learn of YouTube’s animal abuse video problem. Even though the videos violate the site’s policies, YouTube does little to enforce this, according to an investigation by non-profit group Lady Freethinker. The organization is now suing YouTube for breaching its own terms. According to the group’s founder, a company of YouTube’s size should be able to identify and remove these clear violations.
New Name, New Facebook?
Facebook is rebranding, according to The Verge, which likens the change to Google’s reorganization under the name Alphabet back in 2015. With all the bad press about the company in recent years, it's assumed the name switch is an effort to shield future products from the (now sullied) Facebook brand.
Not So Nifty
Remember NFTs? The one-of-a-kind digital assets that are not so great for the environment? Well now folks are borrowing large sums of money and using their NFTs as collateral if they can’t pay back, and some are finding themselves in dire financial straits. On one lending platform, average loans hover around $26,000 with some as high as $200,000. Around one out of every five borrowers go into default, and lose their NFT — which could have skyrocketed in value in the meantime.
This one’s a longread from the MIT Tech Review. The article spotlights companies like Dahua out of China. The company has capitalized on the COVID-19 pandemic to sell thermal cameras to big companies like Amazon, which then uses the tech in its warehouses to monitor employees for signs of COVID. Similar companies have sold their cameras to supermarkets, airports and hospitals. However, the article points out that these Chinese companies are often "tied up in forms of egregious human rights abuses" back in China, where the tech is used to target and oppress underrepresented groups.