1. Netflix Lands 15 Oscar Nominations
Although Netflix’s stock has been in decline, down more than 4.3% Tuesday, the company still managed to receive 15 Oscar nominations. The company received more nominations than any other studio, aside from the obvious Walt Disney Studios and Fox Searchlight. Roma, Netflix’s Alfonso Cuarón film, alone collected 10 nominations, including best picture and best director. Netflix previously altered their theatrical releases to grant Roma a larger possibility for success and to receive awards. Before the change, Netflix only allowed movies to be released in theaters in cohesion with the releases on the streaming service. Few theaters were willing to do so, which hindered Netflix’s chances for nominations. Streaming competitor Hulu will also present films at the Academy Awards this year, but it appears Netflix’s actions have been successful thus far in the award season. Netflix’s The Ballad of Buster Scruggs, also received three nominations, including best adapted screenplay, costuming, and original song. “We are ready to pay top-of-market prices for second run content when the studios, networks, and producers are willing to sell,” Netflix said, “but we are also prepared to keep our members ecstatic with our incredible original content if others choose to retain their content for their own services.” The Academy Awards will air Feb. 24 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.
2. Google Fined $57M by France
Google, now the first large tech giant to violate Europe’s new General Data Protection Regulation, has been fined approximately $57M (50M €) by French regulators. CNIL, France’s data privacy enforcing agency, stated that the violation was due to Google’s failure to divulge transparent explanations of how their data is collected and where the data goes. Additionally, Google did not secure consent from their users to use this data to relay personalized advertisements. Although Google changed their policies slightly to align with the E.U.’s rules, CNIL ultimately found that “the infringements observed deprive the users of essential guarantees regarding processing operations that can reveal important parts of their private life since they are based on a huge amount of data, a wide variety of services and almost unlimited possible combinations.” Google has responded stating the company is in progress of determining their next plans of action. “People expect high standards of transparency and control from us. We’re deeply committed to meeting those expectations and the consent requirements of the GDPR,” Google furthers.
3. Twitter’s Even Darker Mode
Did Twitter’s dark mode just get darker? The answer will be pleasing to Twitter users across the globe. Twitter CEO, Jack Dorsey, has promised a new battery-saving dark mode update to the Twitter app. Dorsey replied directly to Android Headline editor Alex Maxham who expressed his dissatisfaction with the app’s current dark mode. He mentions that the mode appears more like a dark blue than a true black shade. Dorsey agreed with the need for the fix, stating that the team is already in works to fix the problem.
By using a true black color in the mode, new phone users with OLED screens, including the iPhone XS, will be able to turn off their bright pixels when displaying in black. This will allow users to save battery life along with using their app late at night without fear of straining their eyes. Twitter first introduced the dark mode feature in 2016, but since then, many other sites and applications have begun to offer their own form of dark mode. Many third-party apps, like Tweetbot, already provide a true dark mode for Twitter users along with Reddit, Android, and YouTube who released dark modes in 2018. In terms of a release date, it is still unknown when the update will be available.