What’s up with WhatsApp?
After Facebook’s purchase of WhatsApp in 2014, they vowed that there would be no conflict of interest between the two networks as they were to remain separate.
Fast forward to August 2016 and this no longer seems to be the case. As of the 25th August WhatsApp users were notified that their phone numbers could be used for more target Facebook advertisements. For those who do not wish for this information to be shared to Facebook, you have until the 25th September to change your settings.
In defence of this controversial new development, WhatsApp has stated, “we want to explore new ways for you to communicate with businesses that matter to you too, while still giving on an experience without third-party banner ads and spam”. WhatsApp was quick to reassure its users that encrypted messages would not be read and that phone numbers will not be given to Facebook if users decline to offer this information.
It seems interesting that WhatsApp has attempted to reason this profitable venture as a means of improving user communication with businesses that interest them. Often, if a user is interested in a brand, the individual will ultimately initiate contact and communication.
Regardless of the rationale for this development, WhatsApp users will need to remain wary when accepting terms and conditions upon opening the app if they have privacy concerns.
This is just a friendly reminder that the fine print is worth reading sometimes.
Up in flames with SpaceX Falcon 9
The first day of September definitely started off with a bang with the explosion of the SpaceX Falcon 9. It has been reported that the rocket was undergoing a static test when the accident occurred; the cause is still under investigation.
The full scope of the potential consequences have not been fully realised yet, however, it is clear that there will be delays for future tests and construction of not only the SpaceX but other ventures the business has been developing or planning.
A third party that has been affected by this failed test is Facebook, whose $95m satellite has been destroyed in the explosion. This was to be Facebook’s first satellite launch as part of the Internet.org initiative, which would have provided wireless Internet to parts of sub-Saharan Africa.
Although “deeply disappointed” with the delay, Zuckerberg remains positive about their other ventures that they hope will provide the same services to users across the globe.