A week in tech: Friday, November 5th

Where the Needle Lands
1 min readNov 5, 2021


In the new Sway episode, Kara Swisher meets a tech reporter Casey Newton to discuss the recent news surrounding Facebook and try to answer whether the problem is Facebook or the Internet.

Facebook’s promise to stop using facial recognition on its platform does not apply to Meta. Earlier this week, to the joy of all privacy advocates, Facebook announced that it will no longer use facial recognition technology in photo-tagging and will delete one billion faceprints stored on its platform. However, this announcement came with a grain of salt, as the spokesperson for Meta said that moving from facial recognition will not apply to the metaverse, an internet-based simulation where people will interact as avatars.

“Every time a person interacts with a VR environment like Facebook’s metaverse, they’re exposed to collection of their biometric data,” — John Davisson, an attorney at the Electronic Privacy Information Center.

The U.S. took action over Pegasus spyware. The U.S. government suspended the sale of U.S. technology to NSO Group, an Israel-based cybersecurity company that created Pegasus software.

Pegasus software was found on 37 phones belonging to activists, journalists and business people. The list of over 50,000 names of activists, politicians, lawyers, judges and others was linked to NSO groups. It has not yet been confirmed if all the people on the list were spied on.