Illustration: Patrik Mollwing

One year ago, Delaware’s second-largest school district was in trouble. A failed referendum in 2019, on the heels of state funding cuts two years prior, had left it staring down a $10 million deficit that raised the specter of teacher layoffs, the end of sports and extracurriculars, and the demise…


Pattern Matching

Promotional art showing the Covid-19 Information Center on Facebook.

In the most idealistic view of Facebook’s mission, this is the sort of moment it was built for.

With Covid-19 killing thousands of people every day, humanity is in a race to vaccinate enough of the global population to curb the pandemic — ideally before it evolves in ways that…


Screenshot: YouTube

An overtly racist video by conservative YouTube star Steven Crowder did not violate YouTube’s hate speech policy, the company told OneZero, though it has been taken down for other reasons. …


Pattern Matching

Alpine Mining co-founder and CEO Ludovic Thomas works at the company’s main cryptocurrency mining site in the tiny southern Swiss village of Gondo. Photo: FABRICE COFFRINI/AFP via Getty Images

The price of one bitcoin, as I write this, is $57,383 — more than 10 times what it cost just a year ago. That price is volatile, so it will be different by the time you read this. But rest assured it will remain expensive.

There’s another toll, though, for…


Street view of New York City featuring a billboard that reads “DoubleClick Welcomes you to SILICON ALLEY.”
A large billboard for the online advertising agency DoubleClick stands on a rooftop at 22nd and Broadway in New York City. Photo: Erik Freeland/CORBIS SABA/Corbis via Getty Images

Jules Polonetsky remembers the moment that shattered his naivete about the internet.

“I was the consumer affairs commissioner for New York City 20 years ago when some company I’d never heard of came in with a big billboard,” he recalls. “It said, ‘Welcome to Silicon Alley,’ sponsored by DoubleClick.” I’d…


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Photo Illustration: Omar Marques/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

For two decades, the cookie has been an emblem of the online advertising model that powers much of the open web — and the privacy invasions that come with it. Now, the cookie as we know it is dying.

Online advertising will live on, of course, and so will privacy…


Twitter’s director of curation, Joanna Geary. Photo courtesy of Joanna Geary

“Twitter description guy,” in users’ collective imagination, is a beleaguered soul, constantly scrambling to comprehend the bizarre subcultural memes that go viral on the site so that he can write sober-minded summaries of them for Twitter’s trending section. In December, Twitter’s description of a Minecraft-related trending topic led Twitch streamers…


Photo: Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

Facebook recently launched an ad campaign to defend personalized advertising against Apple’s new privacy measures. The campaign, called “Good Ideas Deserve to Be Found,” touts targeted ads as a boon for small businesses. …


Pattern Matching

A slide about Twitter’s “Super Follows” pulled from a recent presentation for investors

Open Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, or Pinterest, then look at your index finger. If you’re like me, you’ll find it already hovering over the screen, poised for scrolling. …


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Photo: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images

A proposed law intended to bolster the struggling news media at the expense of thriving tech platforms is playing out quite poorly in Australia.

Google reluctantly obeyed the legislation, which is expected to pass in the next week, by agreeing to pay large sums to Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and…

Will Oremus

Senior Writer, OneZero, at Medium

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