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Digital Trends Live: Data collection schemes, invasions of privacy, and more

On episode 57 of Digital Trends Live, hosts Greg Nibler and Luke Larsen poured themselves a piping hot cup of news stories from the world of tech.

The biggest story of the day is Facebook’s ongoing faux pas over the research app it was using to collect user data in exchange for monthly payments. Facebook was using the app in violation of Apple’s enterprise program requirements, and so Apple has blocked Facebook from using internal iOS apps, according to a report from The Verge. This is causing headaches among Facebook employees, who are now cut off from other enterprise apps that they may have used in their workflow.

Facebook isn’t the only company facing such a scandal; Google has shut down its Screenwise Meter audience-research app, confessing that it, too, had been gathering user data in exchange for rewards, violating the policies of Apple’s Enterprise program.

Apple is hardly having the best of days itself, though. An attorney named Larry Williams II is suing Apple over a recent bug that allowed people to call an iOS user via FaceTime and hear what’s going on at their end before the receiver even answers. According to Williams II, someone called him and listened in on his conversation with a client, which would be a pretty big deal.

Later on in the show, Greg spoke to Eddie Corral, CEO of PeerTracks, a company that is taking Blockchain technology and applying it to music streaming.

“… in a nutshell, it’s a basic streaming player.” Corral explains. “We have an interactive, on-demand side and we also just developed our PeerTracks radio format, which is PeerTracks Live; that side of the coin, we’re able to play major label music — you can hear Bruno Mars, Taylor Swift — right next to some independent music.”

The goal with PeerTracks is to make things more transparent and easy for recording artists, who often get exploited by larger streaming services. Artists create “smart contracts” that dictate how money for their songs is distributed, and when people listen to their songs, that data is automatically recorded, and money paid out.

“PeerTracks has made it easy, with Blockchain technology, to instantly upload your track, have it vetted by us … once your music is uploaded, you’re able to contact your fanbase, and it would be streaming that same day, and you’re paid instantly,” Corral says. “One of the things that Blockchain is allowing us to do is make things easier for us, the public, and the consumer, believe it or not.”

Greg also spoke to Jordan Morrow, global head of data literacy for Qlik. Morrow was on to talk about the importance of data privacy.

“Our company is a visual analytics company, it helps organizations with digital transformation, and my role … is a very different role than most organizations would have. My role is to enable and empower organizations to be able to handle the amounts of data that they’re producing in an effective consumption manner. When we talk about data privacy, a lot of data privacy boils down to an individual and an organization’s ability to actually consume it effectively and understand what it is.”

Digital Trends Live airs Monday through Friday at 9 a.m. PT, with highlights available on demand after the stream ends. For more information, check out the DT Live homepage, and be sure to watch live for the chance to win occasional prizes.

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