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New Twitter CEO Steps From Behind the Scenes to High Profile 

Newly named Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal has emerged from behind the scenes to take over one of Silicon Valley’s highest-profile and politically volatile jobs.  But his prior lack of name recognition, coupled with a solid technical background, appears to be what some big company backers were looking for to lead Twitter out of its current morass.  A 37-year-old immigrant from India, Agrawal comes from outside the ranks of celebrity CEOs, which include the man he’s replacing, Jack Dorsey, Facebook’s Mark Zuckerberg or SpaceX and Tesla’s Elon Musk. Those brand-name company …


Twitter Founder and CEO Jack Dorsey Steps Down

Twitter founder and CEO Jack Dorsey is stepping down as the company’s leader.   In a news release, Twitter said Dorsey would be replaced by Parag Agrawal, who has been the company’s chief technology officer since 2017. The move is effective immediately.   “I’ve decided to leave Twitter because I believe the company is ready to move on from its founders. My trust in Parag as Twitter’s CEO is deep. His work over the past 10 years has been transformational. I’m deeply grateful for his skill, heart, and soul. It’s …


Australian Government Vows to Unmask Online Trolls

Australia’s government said Sunday it will introduce legislation to unmask online trolls and hold social media giants like Facebook and Twitter responsible for identifying them. Prime Minister Scott Morrison, whose conservative coalition government faces an election in the first half of 2022, said the law would protect Australians from online abuse and harassment. “The online world should not be a wild west where bots and bigots and trolls and others can just anonymously go around and harm people and hurt people, harass them and bully them and sledge them,” Morrison …


US, China and Cyberattacks, the Tool of the 21st Century

China was behind one of the biggest hacks of all time, quietly stealing email and data from organizations, according to the U.S. and other nations’ governments. Experts say China-orchestrated attacks on strategic targets have increased in recent years. Michelle Quinn reports. Producer: Michelle Quinn. Camera: Michael Burke. …


Apple Sues Israeli Spyware Company NSO Group 

Apple says it is suing Israeli NSO Group, maker of the controversial Pegasus spyware.  Apple will be the second company to sue NSO after Facebook, now Meta, sued over similar concerns that Pegasus was targeting WhatsApp users. Meta owns WhatsApp. The case is still working its way through the courts.  Apple says the spyware specifically targeted its users. It also wants to prevent NSO from using any Apple product or service, which would be a massive blow to the company that sells governments the ability to hack iPhones and Android …


Burkina Faso Internet Shutdown Continues into Fourth Day

The shutdown of internet access via mobile phone networks that began Saturday dragged on for a fourth day Tuesday. The government said in a statement the shutdown is in the interest of national defense and public security and will last until around 10 p.m. tonight. VOA talked to some Burkinabes on the streets of Ouagadougou to ask how the shutdown was affecting them and what they thought of the government’s decision. Alexi Sawadogo, a physician, spoke outside a bank on one of the city’s busy boulevards. He said he was there to check his account balance as the shutdown meant he could no …


Robot Waiter Eases Labor Shortages in Australia’s Hospitality Industry

A Sydney restaurant is using a Chinese-made, multi-lingual hospitality robot to address chronic staff shortages as Australia’s economy begins to recover from COVID-19 lockdowns and border closures.  The robot waiter is programmed to know the layout of the tables and delivers food from the kitchen. It is also multi-lingual, programmed to communicate in English and Mandarin. The so-called BellaBot is built by the Chinese firm PuduTech.  Each machine costs about $17,000. They can be leased for $34 per day for each device, or the equivalent of two hours’ wages for restaurant staff. …


Australian Mining Magnate to Help Publishers Strike Content Deal With Google, Facebook

Australian mining billionaire Andrew Forrest’s philanthropic organization will help 18 small news publishers in the country to negotiate collectively with Google and Facebook to secure licensing deals for the supply of news content. Forrest’s Minderoo Foundation on Monday said it would submit an application with the country’s competition regulator, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), allowing the publishers to bargain without breaching competition laws. Forrest, Australia’s richest man, is the chairman and the largest shareholder of iron ore miner Fortescue Metals Group. He has a net worth of around …


NASA’s Mars Helicopter Ingenuity Still in Action 

As researchers at U.S space agency NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory prepare for the 16th flight of Ingenuity, the Mars helicopter, the team has used recently downloaded data from the Mars mission to create the best video yet of one of Ingenuity’s previous flights.  The 1.8-kilogram aircraft arrived on the planet packed away on NASA’s Perseverance rover when it landed on Mars in February. Originally designed to be a simple demonstration project to prove flight was possible in the thin Martian atmosphere, the aircraft has far exceeded expectations and has completed …


After Promise, Musk Sells $1.1 Billion in Tesla Shares to Pay Taxes

After making a promise on Twitter, Tesla CEO Elon Musk has sold about 900,000 shares of the electric car maker’s stock, netting over $1.1 billion that will go toward paying tax obligations for stock options.  The sales, disclosed in two regulatory filings late Wednesday, will cover tax obligations for stock options granted to Musk in September. He exercised options to buy just over 2.1 million shares for $6.24 each. The company’s stock closed Wednesday at $1,067.95 per share.   The transactions were “automatically effected” as part of a trading plan adopted …