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Egypt Blocks 21 Websites For 'Terrorism' And 'Fake News'

Slashdot - 7 hours 18 min ago
Ahmed Aboulenein, reporting for Reuters: Egypt has banned 21 websites, including the main website of Qatar-based Al Jazeera television and prominent local independent news site Mada Masr, accusing them of supporting terrorism and spreading false news. The blockade is notable in scope and for being the first publicly recognized by the government. It was heavily criticized by journalists and rights groups. The state news agency announced it late on Wednesday. Individual websites had been inaccessible in the past but there was never any official admission. Reuters found the websites named by local media and were inaccessible. The move follows similar actions taken on Wednesday by Egypt's Gulf allies Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, which blocked Al Jazeera and other websites after a dispute with Qatar. From a separate report: "This is not the typical Egyptian regime attitude," Lina Attalah, the editor-in-chief of Mada Masr told BuzzFeed News in an interview in Cairo. "We are used to facing troubles with the regime since we have always chosen to write the stories they don't like to hear. We are used to being arrested or have cases filed against us, but blocking us is a new thing." Mada Masr, since its founding in 2013, has regularly published critical stories of the regime in both English and Arabic.

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Categories: Misc

Apple will live stream WWDC 2017 keynote on June 5 at 10AM PT

9to5Mac - 7 hours 31 min ago

Apple is now promoting its upcoming special event on June 5 at 10 am PT with a landing page and a calendar entry on Apple’s WWDC 2017 opening keynote, which Apple will live stream, will be the first major event the company has held since last fall after foregoing a spring event this year.


Categories: Misc

Let's Drop the Hysterics About Trump and NATO's Article 5

Kevin Drum - 7 hours 41 min ago

Is Donald Trump committed to NATO? Here's what the press says about that today:

New York Times: "President Trump on Thursday once again refused to explicitly endorse NATO’s mutual defense pledge, instead lecturing European leaders on what he called their 'chronic underpayments' to the military alliance."

Wall Street Journal: "Mr. Trump’s refusal to say he supports NATO’s common defense provision, known as Article 5, left European diplomats dismayed."

The Washington Post: "Trump refuses to back NATO Article 5." (This is from memory. It was something like that.)

The Washington Post quickly realized it was practicing pack journalism and rewrote their story. It doesn't even mention Article 5 anymore.

As well it shouldn't. At today's unveiling of an Article 5 memorial at NATO headquarters, Trump said this about the aftermath of 9/11: "Our NATO allies responded swiftly and decisively, invoking for the first time in its history the Article 5 collective defense commitments." Later he added: "This twisted mass of metal reminds us not only of what we have lost but also what forever endures: the courage of our people, the strength of our resolve, and the commitments that bind us together as one. We will never forget the lives that were lost, we will never forsake the friends who stood by our side."

It's true that Trump didn't explictly say "We stand behind Article 5," but it's hard to read his comments any other way. Within a few minutes Sean Spicer confirmed this:

Everyone needs to calm down. Sure, Trump probably was trying to be cute. Alternatively, the failure to repeat our commitment to Article 5 might have been yet another example of Trump's ham-handed approach to negotiation, trying to create leverage for more defense spending by making everyone in Europe nervous. Or it could be nothing more than Trump's familiar resolve never to back down: If they want him to say he's committed to Article 5, then that's the one thing he won't say. (He also insisted on doubling down on his much-mocked description of terrorists as "losers," for example.) Or maybe Trump is just being a dick. He wants attention, and this is a way to get it.

Still, he was clear enough, and his press secretary was as explicit as he could be afterward. What's more, before the speech his Secretary of State said without qualification, "Of course we support Article 5." Campaign bluster aside, there's really no indication that the Trump administration is any less committed to NATO than previous administrations. Here's the whole speech:

Categories: Politics

Apple releases a new video showing off iPhone reincarnation with LIAM

9to5Mac - 7 hours 49 min ago

Apple has released a new environment focused video today in the same style as those shown off last month celebrating Earth Day. The previously shared videos discussed the company’s environmental efforts and the science behind it all. The comical illustrations featured Apple Execs like Vice President Lisa Jackson.


Categories: Misc

Joe Lieberman Withdraws Name From FBI Nomination

Crooks and Liars - 7 hours 52 min ago
Joe Lieberman Withdraws Name From FBI Nomination

Welp, that was terrible while it lasted. NBC News:

Former senator and Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Lieberman withdrew himself from consideration to be the next director of the FBI on Thursday, saying his work with an attorney President Trump has retained to represent him in the Russia investigation would be a potential conflict of interest.

"With your selection of Marc Kasowitz to represent you in the various investigations that have begun, I do believe it would be best to avoid any appearance of a conflict of interest, given my role as a senior counsel in the law firm of which Marc is the senior partner," Lieberman wrote Trump in the letter.

Trump had said last week that Lieberman was a leading candidate to head the bureau after his dismissal of Director James Comey earlier this month. But Democrats on Capitol Hill quickly expressed concerns about his nomination after his name was floated as a finalist.

Republicans like John McCain tried to play the "respected by both sides of the aisle" card, a card that was as much a Hashtag Fail as McCain's 2008 presidential bid, endorsed by Turncoat Joe.

And yes Joe as FBI Director would have been a total conflict of interest, but I suspect Joe also saw that adding another line to his government resume -- which might end up as a Wiki entry as "co-conspirator in the Trump-Russia cover up" -- wasn't worth the pay cut.

Categories: Politics

Quinnipiac poll on Trumpcare: 'Backing this bill could be very hazardous to your political health'

Daily Kos - 7 hours 52 min ago

The more people get used to the idea of Trumpcare, the more they dislike it. A new poll from the independent Quinnipiac University—conducted before the latest report from the Congressional Budget Office—shows that it's slightly more unpopular than it was just after it passed the House a few weeks ago, and that the Republicans who voted for it could be in big trouble in 2018.

Only 20 percent of American voters say they are more likely to vote for a Senator or member of Congress who supports the revised Republican health care plan, while 44 percent say they are less likely and 31 percent say this issue won't affect their vote, according to a Quinnipiac University national poll released today.

American voters disapprove of the new health proposal 57 - 20 percent, compared to a 56 - 21 percent disapproval in a May 11 survey. […]

Among independent voters, a key bloc, only 17 percent are more likely to support an elected official who backs the health care plan, while 41 percent are less likely. Republicans are the only listed party, gender, education, age or racial group to support the health care plan, by a lackluster 42 - 24 percent, and the only group where more voters say they would support a candidate for reelection who backs the latest health care plan.

"Advisory to Republicans who support the replacement for Obamacare: Backing this bill could be very hazardous to your political health," said Tim Malloy, assistant director of the Quinnipiac University Poll.

"What was heralded as a cure for a failing plan could have toxic side effects."

A plurality of voters, 44 percent, believe it would make their healthcare costs go up and a big majority—57 percent—correctly says that fewer people would have health insurance under it meaning that people actually are paying attention to what the CBO says. Or what is said last time about the number of people the bill would leave uninsured. So remember—this poll was in the field before the latest bad numbers from the CBO—particularly for people with pre-existing conditions (most of us)—were released.

So Mitch McConnell can take his 15 percent approval rating, this poll, and the new CBO score to his members and just try to turn it into something they'd pass. Good luck.

Categories: Politics

Bully Boy

Balloon Juice - 7 hours 53 min ago

Serial killer, cosplay afficionado, plagiarist, and newly hired employee at Homeland Security is a big fat fucking liar and it may cost him:

Sitting on the tarmac at the Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport on Jan. 15, Milwaukee County Sheriff David A. Clarke Jr. sent a text message to one of his captains after a brief verbal exchange with a passenger.

The sheriff explained in the text what should be done when Riverwest resident Dan Black got off the plane.

“Just a field interview, no arrest unless he become an asshole with your guys,” Clarke wrote Captain Mark Witek. “Question for him is why he said anything to me. Why didn’t he just keep his mouth shut?”

“Follow him to baggage and out the door,” Clarke continued. “You can escort me to carousel after I point him out.”

A copy of the text messages was provided by an attorney for Black, who is suing the sheriff, Milwaukee County and several unnamed deputies over the incident.

Records show the matter, which has drawn national attention, was big enough that federal investigators looked at Clarke and his staff’s handling of the case. Clarke has said he is taking a job as assistant secretary at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, though officials have not confirmed this.

In other words, Clarke was lying:

Black, 24, says he was detained, interviewed and escorted out of Mitchell International Airport on Jan. 15 by a half-dozen deputies after a brief run-in with the sheriff on the plane. He says in the federal suit that he was the victim of an unlawful stop and arrest.

Since Black went public with his complaint, Clarke has threatened and belittled his fellow passenger, calling Black a “snowflake” and saying anyone, including Black, who harasses him on an airplane might get “knocked out.”

But now Clarke is giving his version of the events on the plane, which matches Black’s account, except in a couple of details.

Asshole. On the upside, we don’t know if he is a Nazi.

Categories: Politics

Trump loses in court again: Fourth Circuit backs nationwide injunction on his Muslim ban 2.0

Daily Kos - 7 hours 54 min ago

This decision just in from the Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals, which fielded an “en banc” panel of 13 judges, largely upholding the nationwide injunction on Donald Trump’s Muslim ban 2.0:

… an Executive Order that in text speaks with vague words of national security, but in context drips with religious intolerance, animus, and discrimination. Surely the Establishment Clause of the First Amendment yet stands as an untiring sentinel for the protection of one of our most cherished founding principles—that government shall not establish any religious orthodoxy, or favor or disfavor one religion over another. Congress granted the President broad power to deny entry to aliens, but that power is not absolute. It cannot go unchecked...

The case is likely to end up at the Supreme Court, reports the New York Times.

Thursday, May 25, 2017 · 10:03:38 PM +00:00 · Kerry Eleveld

UPDATE: Sessions/DOJ will appeal to the Supreme Court. 


Categories: Politics

Jupiter’s Super-Weird Atmosphere Is Astonishing Scientists

Wired Science - 7 hours 57 min ago
Jupiter’s Super-Weird Atmosphere Is Astonishing ScientistsJupiter's atmosphere defies all scientific expectations. The post Jupiter’s Super-Weird Atmosphere Is Astonishing Scientists appeared first on WIRED.
Categories: Bio

Newly Discovered Vulnerability Raises Fears Of Another WannaCry

Slashdot - 7 hours 58 min ago
A newly found flaw in widely used networking software leaves tens of thousands of computers potentially vulnerable to an attack similar to that caused by WannaCry, which infected more than 300,000 computers worldwide, cybersecurity researchers said on Thursday. From a Reuters report: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security on Wednesday announced the vulnerability, which could be exploited to take control of an affected computer, and urged users and administrators to apply a patch. Rebekah Brown of Rapid7, a cybersecurity company, told Reuters that there were no signs yet of attackers exploiting the vulnerability in the 12 hours since its discovery was announced. But she said it had taken researchers only 15 minutes to develop malware that made use of the hole. "This one seems to be very, very easy to exploit," she said. Rapid7 said it had found more than 100,000 computers running vulnerable versions of the software, Samba, free networking software developed for Linux and Unix computers.

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Categories: Misc

Donald Trump's demeaning NATO speech a 'near disaster' while Obama rocks Berlin

Daily Kos - 8 hours 9 min ago

At a ceremony on Thursday, a piece of the North Tower of the World Trade Center was installed next to the new NATO headquarters. It was a vivid reminder that the only time the organization has been called on to come through on the Article 5 commitment to defend members was following 9/11. At the height of the conflict in Afghanistan, troops from every NATO partner were involved.

Casualties included 453 troops from the UK, 158 from Canada, 88 from France, 57 from Germany ... and down the line for every member nation. Even NATO candidate nation Montenegro lost a soldier coming to aid the United States when the United States called on NATO. Over 1,000 non-American soldiers from NATO countries died in Afghanistan. So far.

Also on Thursday, Donald Trump came to speak at the dedication of that new memorial. And gave a speech in which he neglected to actually endorse Article 5 while lecturing other world leaders that they should pay up. How did that go?

President Trump, speaking at a ceremony Thursday to dedicate a memorial to NATO’s resolve in the wake of the 2001 terrorist attacks on the United States, publicly chastised his fellow alliance leaders for not being “fair” to U.S. taxpayers.

Trump not only repeatedly kicked the NATO allies at a ceremony recalling that the only time the alliance has been called on to carry out its commitment of joint defense was in support of the United States, he also took time out for a snide remark about the cost of the new NATO headquarters and to literally throw his weight around.

"And I never asked what the new NATO headquarters cost, but it is beautiful."

Meanwhile, Angela Merkel breakfasted with someone who got a much more enthusiastic welcome in Germany …

Categories: Politics

Watch new Earth Day video Apple shared at Sustainable Brands conference

iDownloadBlog - 8 hours 9 min ago

Apple celebrated Earth Day 2017 by announcing a partnership with World Wildlife Fund, promoting environmentally-focused apps on App Store and posting cartoonish videos on YouTube detailing its efforts to preserve our environment for generations to come.

Today, more than a month after Earth Day took place, it shared another Earth Day video on YouTube, titled “Does my iPhone believe in incarnation?” and featuring its recycling robot Liam.

The clip was created to celebrate Apple’s attendance at Sustainable Brands 2017, a Detroit conference where Sarah Chandler, Apple’s Director of Operations and Environmental Initiatives, discussed Apple’s plan to reduce the environmental impact of its supply chain.

“Lisa Jackson, Apple’s lead on Environment work, and our recycling robot Liam will make you believe,” reads the video’s description. “Lisa and her team explain it all, while Liam disassembles your iPhone 6 so those parts can find new life.”

Bt taking apart used products, Apple is able to recycle rare earth materials and other valuable metals and send them back to its supply chain for further processing to be eventually reused in the production of components for new products.

According to the video, L.I.A.M. stands for “Liberate. iPhone. Auto-Disassembly. Machine”

Question: why does the video briefly show Tim Cook holding a bunny?

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Categories: Misc

As Trump pouts through Brussels, a smiling Angela Merkel hosts Obama in Berlin

Daily Kos - 8 hours 18 min ago

Donald Trump is currently visiting Brussels, home of NATO, where he is of course making an ass of himself in all the ways his worst critics expected. Donald Trump last year called Brussels a "hellhole," during one of his many, many, many orations explaining what was wrong with the entire rest of the planet and how they were dooming us all. His reception in Brussels is therefore also what you would expect.

As Trump touched down on Belgian soil, 9,000 demonstrators took to the streets to protest his trip.

The message was clear. "Get the hell out of our hole," one placard read. Another stated: "Mr. Trump, you are not welcome." [...]

"I don't want to waste my time thinking about Trump," said Philippe Dekeysery, who was flicking through CDs at a flea market. "It's all show and no substance. I'm sure after calling the city a hellhole he'll come here and say, 'it's fabulous.'"

Everyone has Trump's number now. They know who he is, and how he works. We should have Philippe here fly to Washington and explain a few things to the dullards in our Congress.

Meanwhile, let's check in with former president Barack Obama, who visited Berlin to have a nice public sit-down with German Chanceller Angela Merkel. It may perhaps have been orchestrated in small part just to give Trump another thing to freak out about during the wee long tweet-hours of the morning. He did not suck, and did not make an ass of himself, and the photographs of he, Merkel and the crowd of thousands of happy, smiling people could not be a starker difference from the visit of Captain Donald J. Bumblefudge.

[With] the rendezvous came a rhapsody of smiles and mutual affection.

"We can't hide behind a wall," Obama told the rapt audience, a none-too-subtle dig at his successor, in his first speaking appearance in Europe since he left office. The crowd lapped it up.

So when Angela Merkel meets with Trump later today, she will at least have had a pleasant morning. This is not likely to endear her at all to the great orange gasbag and whatever his latest demands are—presuming he can remember them. If anything, it's likely to make Trump's job tougher. I just met with a real leader, Merkel's face will say. What have you got?


Categories: Politics

Trump Embarrasses USA, Acting Like A Slumlord Instead Of NATO Ally

Crooks and Liars - 8 hours 32 min ago

While speaking in front of a remnant piece of 9/11 wreckage, a symbol and a ceremony of NATO's honoring our tragedy and also their invoking the Article 5 agreement, Trump used this opportunity and whined like a desperate slumlord trying to evict pesky tennents from one of his buildings instead of strengthening an alliance that he had consistently criticized during the campaign trail.

During his speech, at first praised NATO's response to 9/11, "...our NATO allies responded swiftly and decisively, invoking for the first time in its history the article five collective defense commitments."

But he never said that the U.S. would also stand tall with our allies.

He then attacked our allies as if they were deadbeat dads saying, "NATO members must finally contribute their fair share and meet their financial obligations."

He continued, "But 23 of the 28 member nations are still not paying what they should be paying and what they're supposed to be paying for their defense. This is not fair to the people and taxpayers of the United States and many of these nations owe massive amounts of money from past years — and not paying in those past years."

The member nations looked on in disbelief.

Trump surrogates have stated over and over again that what Trump said on the campaign trail has little meaning now since he's in office, but in this instance that's not true.

He put a smile on Putin's face with these words.

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Categories: Politics

'You illegal?' Policeman badgers immigrant who had just been hit by a car about legal status

Daily Kos - 8 hours 33 min ago

According to an exclusive report from Univision, rather than immediately providing medical assistance to a Latino bicyclist who had just been hit by a pickup truck, a Florida sheriff callously badgered the Honduran immigrant about his legal status, the start of a series of events that eventually led to the immigrant man being arrested by Border Patrol. Police are supposed to provide stability and assistance to all members of the public, no matter their immigration status. But the only message local law enforcement is sending here is that calling them, even in a moment of crisis or violence, could just lead to their deportation:

Marcos Antonio Huete, a 31-year-old Honduran immigrant, was lying on a sidewalk next to his bicycle after being hit April 27 by a GMC Sierra pickup truck on his way to work in Key West in the Florida Keys.

"You illegal? Are you a legal citizen or no? Speak English? You got ID? Passport, visa, or what? a Monroe County sheriff asked Huete insistently, according to the video.

Still on the ground, Huete answers with monosyllables before using a cell phone to call his sister, who arrived at the scene soon after.

According to Univision, an ambulance was called only after a second officer asked Huete—who was sprawled out on the sidewalk—in Spanish if he needed medical care. But to add insult to injury, Huete was told by an officer after he was released from the hospital on crutches that he had to return to the scene of the incident, where he was not only “fined $75 by a Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles officer for causing the accident,” but was also arrested by Border Patrol. Huete now faces possible deportation.

"The moment these agents become the mass deportation force of President Trump will be the end of any cooperation between immigrant communities in the United States and the local police," said Howard Simon, executive director of the Florida chapter of the ACLU.

Categories: Politics

Cord-Cutters Are Ditching Their Cable Packages At the Fastest Rate Ever

Slashdot - 8 hours 38 min ago
Sara Fischer, writing for Axios: Cord-cutters are ditching their cable packages at the fastest rate ever, opting instead for cheaper, bundled digital TV options, according to the latest Magid Broadcast Study. The trend reflects consumers' preferences to ditch bundled cable packages for more affordable, niche bundled services that can be accessed on TV box tops or on mobile. For consumers, there are more bundled packages than ever, all popping up around similar price ranges. YouTube TV and Hulu TV launched within the past two month, joining the likes of SlingTV and DirectTV Now -- all at a roughly $40 monthly price point -- a bargain considering the average American pays $92 monthly for cable.

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Categories: Misc

A Montana GOP candidate made in Trump's mold: rich, unaccountable, and above the law

Daily Kos - 8 hours 38 min ago

You don't have to know much about Montana's GOP congressional candidate Greg Gianforte to realize he's a direct political descendent of Donald Trump: an entitled millionaire who's accountable to no one and considers himself above the law.

Look no further than the altercation last night in which Gianforte wrapped his hands around the neck of a reporter who dared ask him a question he'd been dodging for months: Does he support the House healthcare repeal bill, especially after the Congressional Budget Office determined it would deprive 23 million Americans of health insurance while pricing many more with pre-existing conditions out of the market altogether?

That question was the straw that broke the camel's back. Reporters don't have the right to ask and, no, voters don't have the right to know because: He's Greg Gianforte, millionaire!

As Gianforte grabbed Guardian reporter Ben Jacobs by the neck and threw him down to the ground, he screamed, "I'm sick and tired of you guys! [...] Get the hell out of here! The last guy did the same thing!” 

As in, ask a question?

"You with the Guardian?" Gianforte demanded to know after physically and verbally assaulting Jacobs.

A telling inquiry. 

The Guardian was the focus of Gianforte's ire precisely because the outlet had uncovered the fact that Gianforte held shares in two Russian companies—Gazprom and Rosneft—that the U.S. had sanctioned in the wake of Russia's incursion of Crimea.

The piece, written by Jacobs, was very responsibly reported, including ample space for a response from Gianforte's campaign and the observations of a state department employee who said the shares from an index fund were both noteworthy but also nothing to "freak out about."

Still, he's Greg Gianforte, millionaire! Damn the voters. What right do the little people have to know?

After Gianforte body slammed Jacobs Wednesday night, his campaign put out a statement that was wildly inconsistent with audio of the candidate completely losing it and unloading on Jacobs. 

Categories: Politics

Poverty is all in poor people's heads according to Ben Carson

Daily Kos - 8 hours 40 min ago

Ben Carson should really stop talking. Truly. Because it seems that whenever he talks about anything that isn’t related to brains or science, he makes a complete and total ass out of himself. Earlier this month, he got himself into trouble when he said that we shouldn’t make housing for low-income Americans “too cozy” because otherwise they might not want to work hard enough to actually leave government housing. Then on Tuesday, during a radio interview with conservative media personality Armstrong Williams, he said that poverty is a state of mind. 

“I think poverty to a large extent is also a state of mind,” he said, according to a transcript of the interview that was released on Wednesday. “You take somebody that has the right mind-set, you can take everything from them and put them on the street, and I guarantee in a little while they’ll be right back up there.”

He added that helping people may not better their lives.

In 2015, over 40 million people in the US were officially living in poverty. Forty-three percent of children in America live in low-income families. Poverty is serious business and is not just an individual problem but a systematic one with larger societal implications. It is not simply overcome by a good attitude. But applying Ben’s standard, what other serious conditions (medical, social, economic or otherwise) can be overcome by changing one’s mindset? Cancer? Physical disability? Racism (of course)? Venereal disease? See how asinine this sounds? 

This is obviously the kind of “pull yourself up by the bootstraps” crap that Republicans love. But thankfully it’s been debunked by economists, historians, sociologists—essentially everyone with access to facts. Its oh-so-tempting to take individual success stories (like Ben’s) and apply them to a larger system but that’s not how this works. That’s not how any of this works. The data and facts (hey, Trump administration and supporters: here’s some news for you—facts are not actually just for Democrats) actually show that most people who are born poor are most likely to stay that way. Why? Because hard work and state of mind aside, wealth offers a significant advantage in our society. Even when poor people get access to decent housing, education and jobs.

Categories: Politics

Readdle brings file drag-and-drop in Split View to its iPad productivity apps

9to5Mac - 8 hours 42 min ago

Readdle has updated its suite of productivity software to support file drag-and-drop between its own apps when multitasking with Split Screen on supported iPads. Drag-and-drop is a desktop computer feature that iPad users have been requesting on iOS since multitasking was introduced two years ago.


Categories: Misc

Facebook is making Instant Articles compatible with Apple News and Google AMP formats

iDownloadBlog - 8 hours 43 min ago

Facebook is rolling out new tools today to help publishers who post Instant Articles on the Facebook platform make their fast-loading news stories compatible with the Apple News format and Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages.

According to the social networking giant, an updated Instant Articles SDK, now available on GitHub, allows publishers to build content publishable as Google’s Accelerated Mobile Pages.

Support for Apple News articles is coming soon, says Facebook.

Politico reported today that Apple has created a new Editor-in-Chief position on Apple News. The Cupertino giant hired Lauren Kern, former Executive Editor at New York Magazine, for the newly created position.

Facebook’s updated SDK removes a time and resource-consuming step in publishing on multiple platforms by having the markup publishers use to create Instant Articles automatically generate the code needed to build these other formats.

For instance, any custom formats—things like fonts, colors and captions—that publishers have designed in the Style Editor will now be “closely mirrored” in the other formats.

The company wrote:

Media executives told us about the challenge they face using multiple platforms to share their stories–more distribution formats create more content management costs.

Developers who attended our Journalism Project Hackathons in New York and London also asked for a way Instant Articles could support other major publishing formats.

Instant Articles debuted as an iPhone exclusive in May 2015.

Rival Google launched Accelerated Mobile Pages in October the same year. Both features aim to make news articles from participating publishers load in a fraction of a second on mobile devices than their non-optimized versions.

Both Google and Facebook want to speed up webpage loading times, especially for users in emerging markets and those on unreliable or slow Internet connections. The faster the page loads, the more likely the user is to actually read the article. And the more news articles users consume on any given day, the more ads they’ll see.

Instant Articles have been criticized for being confined to Facebook’s wall garden and their ad system. As for Accelerated Mobile Pages, Google is giving them preferential treatment in search results, but the implementation leaves a lot to be desired.

While these pages do load significantly faster versus the regular mobile pages, all Accelerated Mobile Pages implement Google’s own scrolling behavior that feels weird on iOS while making it harder than necessary to visit the original article.

Accelerated pages have their own unique URLs. To visit the original article, you must first tap the hyperlink icon at the top of the page to reveal the original URL, then tap the URL to visit the original page on the publisher’s website.

The worst thing about Google’s accelerated pages is the fat that they don’t let you use Safari’s clutter-free Reader Mode or the Find in Page feature, available from the Share menu.

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Categories: Misc