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Editor's picks: Technology behind 'Deepfakes'; Broadcasters' dispute with Locast


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Editor's picks: Technology behind 'Deepfakes'; Broadcasters' dispute with Locast

Here are the editor's top picks for the week.

5G Focus: T-Mobile/Sprint deal decision; UK rollouts; 5G in broadcasting

5G topped headlines last week, with the U.S. Department of Justice requiring T-Mobile US Inc. and Sprint Corp. to provide 5G network build-out support to DISH Network Corp. as a condition for approving the wireless carriers' merger. Meanwhile, a U.S. broadcaster is leading efforts to develop a 5G-based platform for off-loading content on digital terrestrial networks. Across the pond, several operators in the U.K. revealed details of their 5G rollouts.

The business case for protecting the technology behind 'deepfakes'

Deepfakes — a term that combines "deep learning," a complex form of machine learning, with the word "fake" — are video or audio recordings that use artificial intelligence and algorithms to superimpose the actions and speech of one person onto another. Though not necessarily new, the technology behind deepfakes is advancing rapidly and becoming available to more users across the internet, culminating recently in a series of manipulated videos featuring high-profile politicians and CEOs that sparked the ire of U.S. lawmakers.

Politicians, public push big tech for real solutions to 'deepfakes' problem

Manipulated media enhanced by artificial intelligence and machine learning is becoming more common, and lawmakers and tech giants have begun to explore remedies. But some industry experts say big tech companies should be doing more to combat abuse of the technology.

Broadcasters call Locast 'ruse' to aid AT&T, DISH in heated retrans spats

U.S. broadcasters are crying foul over streaming service Locast, claiming it provides unauthorized access to their content while benefiting operators DISH and AT&T Inc., which are embroiled in contentious carriage disputes with the station owners. In a July 31 lawsuit filed against Locast, CBS Corp., Walt Disney Co., NBCUniversal Media LLC and Fox Corp. pointed to the advantages the streaming service affords DISH and AT&T in retransmission-consent negotiations and the upper hand it gives the operators over other virtual providers.

Spotify focused on content, personalization to bolster competitive position

Spotify Technology SA CEO Daniel Ek said the company is focused on providing users with more personalized, premium experiences and the strategy is paying off in user growth, despite a second-quarter miss on a key user figure. Spotify on July 31 reported 108 million premium subscribers globally as of the end of the June quarter, up 31% year over year. The premium user figure fell on the low end of the company's guidance range of 107 million to 110 million and below Spotify's goal for growth on the high end of its given range.