Good morning! This is the tech news you need to know this Friday.
- Amazon cancelled its plans to move its new HQ2 headquarters to New York. The company said it would not reopen its search for HQ2 but would proceed as planned in Virginia and Nashville, Tennessee.
- Politicians and tech execs reacted to the surprise news of Amazon pulling HQ2 from New York City. The decision to bring HQ2 to New York was met with fierce backlash from many politicians, local residents, and tech leaders who took aim at HQ2’s effect on housing prices, the major tax breaks New York was giving Amazon, and the company’s treatment of workers.
- Bernie Sanders congratulated New York for “standing up” to Amazon. Sanders, who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, has been a consistent and vocal critic of Amazon’s treatment of its workers.
- Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez and New York activists also celebrated Amazon’s decision to cancel HQ2 in Long Island City. Ocasio-Cortez called the retreat a win for “everyday New Yorkers” in the fight against “corporate greed… worker exploitation, and the power of the richest man in the world,” referring to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.
- Facebook is reportedly considering paying a record multi-billion dollar fine to settle the FTC’s investigation into its privacy practices. The FTC has been investigating whether the leak of data on Facebook users to Cambridge Analytica violated a previous agreement between the agency and the social-network.
- Former Uber CEO Travis Kalanick is quietly building a new kind of food-delivery service. CloudKitchens, one of the units of Kalanick’s company City Storage Systems, has hired dozens of people including former Uber employees.
- Anti-vaccination ads on Facebook are targeting pregnant women, while a measles outbreak spreads across the country. The Daily Beast reports there are more than 150 ad spots on Facebook that target women over the age of 25, those the most likely to have children at an age when vaccination decisions are made.
- Nintendo detailed their heavy-hitting lineup of Switch games coming in 2019. The company showed off more than two-dozen upcoming Switch games during a 36-minute “Nintendo Direct” presentation.
- The new $US1.37 billion border-security deal might save SpaceX’s launch site in Texas, where Elon Musk hopes to launch Mars rockets. Department of Homeland Security maps reportedly showed a proposed physical barrier running directly through SpaceX’s site.
- Google invested in a startup with tech that uses the voices of NFL players to answer questions on Google Home devices. The sports technology startup StatMuse received a strategic investment from the Google Assistant Investment program to help further its vision.
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