This Week In Digital

James Stanley

This week in digital

Mark Zuckerberg To Give Away 99% of Facebook Shares

Philanthropist and social entrepreneur Mark Zuckerberg publicly announced the birth of his baby daughter, Max, via Facebook on Tuesday. It was the news following however that stole the day’s headlines. Zuckerberg and his wife, Priscilla Chan, declared that they vow to give away 99% (worth an estimated $45 billion) of their Facebook shares within their lifetimes to help fund the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative.

Zuckerberg announced that he wants to “join people across the world to advance human potential and promote equality for all children in the next generation.” The post was full of references to global inequality and the challenges baby Max rtx1sqle_0now faces as a member of the generation that will bear the brunt of its parents’ environmental and financial mistakes. “We must make long term investments over 25, 50 or even 100 years. The greatest challenges require very long time horizons and cannot be solved by short term thinking.”

Zuckerberg joins an elite “philanthocapitalist billionaires club” alongside Bill Gates and Warren Buffett by pledging his fortune to charity rather than his descendants. Together, Zuckerberg, Gates and Buffett are sending a powerful message to all others who have accumulated a vast fortune, “from those to whom much is given, much is expected”.

It is planned that no more than $1 billion of Facebook stock will be sold or gifted each year for the next three years. He intends on retaining his majority voting position in the company’s stock for the foreseeable future.

We can only hope that more of the world’s richest follow suit so that Max realises improvements in the world of today, tomorrow.

Children’s Data Leaked in VTech Hack

VTech_ColourPocket_img2_lg._V381412270_ (2)In yet another major hacking scandal, toy manufacturer VTech announced this week that more than 727,000 profiles of children in the UK were accessed by hackers, with 560,000 parent profiles also affected. Globally, 4,854,209 parent accounts were accessed, with 6,368,509 children’s profiles also compromised. The UK was the third-worst country hit by the hacks worldwide.

Details were accessed through The Learning Lodge, a software platform allowing users to download apps, learning games, e-books and other educational content to their VTech products. Parent accounts included information such as name, mailing address, email address, IP address, download history and account credentials. Children’s profiles include only name, gender and birth date, the company said.

The alleged hacker who contacted Motherboard, Vice’s tech magazine has said that “nothing” will be done with the sensitive information. It was simply done to reveal the company’s security weaknesses.

If companies like VTech are to gather sensitive data through their connected smart toys, they must make sure the security of their users’ information is kept completely secure. The learning lodge website has been temporarily suspended for the time being.

Who Has The Best Internet In The World?

This week, a new report emerged from the International Telecommunication Union revealing the countries with the best Internet connection in the world. The study takes into account Internet speed and the percentage of people who have access to an Internet connection. For the second time in a row, South Korea came out on top boasting an IDI overall rating of 8.93 (out of 10). Nordic countries Denmark and Iceland followed 2 and 3 with the UK coming in at an impressive 4th.

Perhaps most surprising was the failings of many developed countries in the list. Germany, the US, New Zealand and France all appeared outside of the top 10.

Here’s a list of the top 15.


London Black Cabs To Accept Contactless Payments in 2016

london-cab-driver-flickr-jtbarrettWith black cabbies struggling to compete with Uber, proposals to modernise the city’s infamous mode of transport could help them hit back.

Transport for London has announced plans which will allow customers to settle their fare by either card or mobile payment. With TFL recently losing a high court battle to stop Uber from operating in the city, it’s the first sign of responsive competition.

London Mayor, Boris Johnson said “this is great news for the millions of people who use London’s world famous black cabs.”

And Finally… Viral News

Aussie boy hiccups his way through the national anthem!

7-year-old Ethan battled through a serious bout of the hiccups as he sung the Australian national anthem at the start of a baseball game this week. His reaction afterwards is priceless!

DJ Earworm releases mashup of all this year hits

In what has now become an annual tradition, DJ Earworm released his “mashup” of this year’s biggest pop tunes this week. It’s actually quite listenable considering the amount of rubbish he’s had to work with…

… And you thought the John Lewis ad was emotional…

German supermarket, EDEKA, has launched its Christmas advert and if it doesn’t bring a tear to the eye then you may just have a heart of stone – enjoy!