Friday roundup: A week in tech | News

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The Innovation and Technology Network

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Friday roundup: A week in tech

Beware, drone users: you could find yourself grounded if you practice illegal or irresponsible…droning, as the police have been given extra powers to scupper such air-bound activities.

Last week, a ‘pilot’ was removed of more than 5,000 hard-earned pounds for flying his device over MI6’s London abode – which they didn’t take kindly to, being as it was dress down Friday (maybe).

Operation Foreverwing will see cops (I assume they’ll be from Flying Squad) confiscate drones from and deal out spot fines to owners that misbehave. Oh, and there’s also the threat of prison if you bother aircraft.

The Home Office is pleased with the developments, claiming the police now have the “tools needed to tackle drone misuse,” which may include ground-to-air missiles, I dunno.

Henceforth, drones weighing 250 grams or more and replete with a camera will have to be registered with official custodians of the aerial, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA).

Jonathan Nicholson of the CAA said: "Our prime concern is about aviation safety and how aircraft and drones can legally share airspace. So the emphasis is on the drone user, because it is much more likely they will see a helicopter or light aircraft, than the pilot of those will see a drone."

According to J Nicholson, CAA, staying sensible in the skies is mainly “common sense” and any careful operator stays away from aircraft and airports, people, crowds, and built-up areas.

Please, drone responsibly.

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Have you come under the influence of online influencers? If you have, you may have been influenced wrongly, according to the eagle-eyed spotters of bad influencing down at the Advertising Standards Authority (ASA).

The watchdog has 'named and shamed' four influencers who haven’t been transparent about the true nature of their posts on Instagram (I can feel all the life draining out of me), and has published the details on its no doubt widely read website.

And the shady quartet have form, having been warned beforehand by the ASA to make clear that their posts are actually adverts.

Let’s name them: Jodie Marsh, Chloe Ferry, Chloe Khan, and Lucy Mecklenburgh. Nope, I’ve no idea who they are either.

For the ASA’s put-upon CEO, Guy Parker, things couldn’t be simpler: “It’s not difficult – be upfront and clear when posts and stories are ads,” he sighed.

As punishment, the dubious foursome will remain on the ASA’s website for three months. Not that much of a penalty, is it?

But one of the offenders, Jodie Marsh, doesn’t believe it’s a fair cop, complaining to the BBC that bragging about the ‘nutritional products’ she herself produces is perfectly moral behaviour. “I feel like I don’t have freedom of speech,” she moaned.

And there you go – another week of internet.

Have you been influenced incorrectly online? Please get in touch.

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And here are some other things you may or may not be interested in (it’s a roundup roundup):

EL Salvador seems to have lost its mind and decided to try and make Bitcoin legal tender. But the World Bank doesn’t like the idea and has rejected it. Find out why here.

In an effort to get young people vaccinated against Covid-19, the world’s dating apps have started dangling tempting offers. Those searching for intimate connections on the likes of Tinder and Bumble can enjoy benefits if they boast of their vaccination status. And what are these benefits? Virtual badges and stickers. Which sounds great, if you’re about 12. Read more here.

Apparently, ordering your dinner through a food-delivery app is more expensive than buying directly from your favourite outlets – up to 44% more costly in some instances. Who would have thought it? Read the whole thing here.

And Facebook has been testing ads in virtual reality headsets, would you believe. How long before this latest innovation somehow snowballs into an enormous ethical disaster remains to be seen. It doesn’t normally take very long. Two months? Read all about this creepy development here.