AP Technology NewsBrief at 8:40 a.m. EDT
(Associated Press Via Acquire Media NewsEdge) Senators ask feds to probe requests for passwordsSEATTLE (AP) _ Two U.S. senators are asking Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate whether employers asking for Facebook passwords during job interviews are violating federal law, their offices announced Sunday. Troubled by reports of the practice, Democratic Sens. Chuck Schumer of New York and Richard Blumenthal of Connecticut said they are calling on the Department of Justice and the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission to launch investigations. The senators are sending letters to the heads of the agencies.
Facebook warns employers not to demand passwordsNEW YORK (AP) _ Facebook is warning employers not to demand the passwords of job applicants, saying that it's an invasion of privacy that opens companies to legal liabilities. The social networking company is also threatening legal action against those who violate its long-standing policy against sharing passwords.
Facebook takes steps to address privacy concernsNEW YORK (AP) _ Facebook has taken steps in recent days to address more worries about privacy, warning employers not to ask prospective employees for their passwords and trying to clarify its user "rights and responsibilities" policies. But the latter effort backfired when tens of thousands of users, mostly in Germany, misunderstood the clarifications and blasted the company, even though nothing substantive had changed. Their discontent showed that, no matter what Facebook does, privacy concerns are still the biggest threat to users' trust and to its growth.
Girl's voice mails gone after T-Mobile promotionSEATTLE (AP) _ When Faron Butler wanted to hear his daughter's voice, he went to the voice mails she left him before she died of cancer at the age of 14. "If I had a bad day or week, I'd listen to her voice. I'd listen to it a couple of times a week," Butler said Friday from his home in Elma, Wash., holding back tears. "She'd be there, saying, `Daddy, I love you and I miss you.'"
Zynga founder, other insiders to sell 43M sharesNEW YORK (AP) _ Zynga's CEO and other insiders at the online games company plan to sell 43 million shares of stock in a public offering that will boost the amount of stock available for general trading by 35 percent. Class B stock owned by Mark Pincus and others will be converted to regular, Class A shares. All shares have the same ownership value, but Class B stock has seven times the voting power.
Sarkozy: Jail those who browse terror websitesPARIS (AP) _ France's president proposed a sweeping new law Thursday that would see repeat visitors to extremist web sites put behind bars _ one of several tough measures floated in the wake of a murderous shooting spree. The proposed rules, unveiled by Nicolas Sarkozy after the death of an Islamist fanatic wanted for a horrifying series of execution-style murders, have alarmed journalists and legal experts, who say they risk pulling the plug on free expression.
Microsoft, TiVo drop suits against each otherDigital video recorder pioneer TiVo Inc. said Thursday that it had reached an agreement with software maker Microsoft Corp. for the companies to drop lawsuits against each other following TiVo's settlement with AT&T Inc. Microsoft had sued TiVo in 2010, alleging that the Alviso, Calif.-based company violated its patents related to an on-screen TV guide. TiVo later countersued.
Calif. settlement will fund car charging networkLOS ANGELES (AP) _ An energy company accused of artificially inflating the cost of electricity, leading to California's power crisis a decade ago, agreed to pay a $120 million settlement that will fund 10,000 electric car charging stations across the state, Gov. Jerry Brown announced Friday. The money from NRG Energy Inc. will help California try to turn a black mark on its past power management into an attempt at future energy efficiency.
Facebook buys patents from IBM to defend itselfMENLO PARK, Calif. (AP) _ Facebook has acquired patents from IBM as it girds itself for litigation, including a lawsuit by Yahoo. A company spokesman on Thursday confirmed the purchase but did not provide details.
T-Mobile cutting a net 1,900 call-center jobsBELLEVUE, Wash. (AP) _ Cellphone carrier T-Mobile USA Inc. said Thursday that it is cutting 1,900 jobs nationwide as it consolidates its call centers in an effort to reduce costs and remain competitive. Seven of its 24 call centers will be closed by the end of June. About 3,300 people work at the centers slated to be shuttered, but T-Mobile said it plans to hire up to 1,400 people at the remaining 17 centers.
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