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2017 June 27: "Google has been fined 2.42bn euros ($2.7bn; £2.1bn) by the European Commission after it ruled the company had abused its power by promoting its own shopping comparison service at the top of search results. ..." -- [bbc].
 
2017: "Snapchat hopes its planned flotation in New York will value the five-year-old photo-sharing app company at up to $25bn (£20bn) ..." -- The G. [www][4/2].
"... Snap Inc shares jumped by $US7.58, or 44%, to close at $US24.48 after the company priced its initial public offering (IPO) of 200 million shares at $US17 each yesterday. ... Snapchat's parent company raised $3.4 billion ... [the] closing price on Thursday valued the Los Angeles company at $US34 billion (au$44.9 billion). ..." -- [abc][3/3/2017].)
"... [Snap's] shares tumbled 21% on slowing user growth and revenue in its first results as a public company. ..." -- [bbc][12/5/2017].
 
2016: Oxford Dictionaries (as in the OED) chose post-truth as its word of the year, "an adjective defined as 'relating to or denoting circumstances in which objective facts are less influential in shaping public opinion than appeals to emotion and personal belief.'"
Fake news stories, spread by social media such as Facebook, were widely held to have played some part in the "Brexit" referendum (the UK to leave the EU), and the US presidential election (Donald Trump (Rep.) defeated Hilary Clinton (Dem.)). (See [www][11/2016].)
And, Jan. 2017: "The [MacQuarie Dictionary] Committee's Choice for the 2016 Word of the Year is fake news. Honourable mentions go to enby and halal snack pack. ..." -- MD [www][25/1/2017].
 
2016, August: Governments have been struggling to combat aggressive tax minimisation schemes run by tech companies in particular.
"Ireland should recover up to €13bn (£11bn) from Apple in back taxes, the European Commission has ruled. After a three-year investigation, it has concluded that the US firm's Irish tax benefits are illegal. ... In 2011, as in previous years, every Apple product sold in Europe, Middle East, Africa and India was recorded as a sale by Apple Sales International [&euro16bn] in Ireland. ... the final 10 million euros tax paid by Apple was equivalent to a rate of 0.05% - this fell to 0.005% by 2014 as profits rose ..." -- [bbc][30/8/2016]. Note, Ireland doesn't want the €13bn. There will be appeals by Ireland and by Apple.
 
2015, March: It is not the first, but Apple finally announced its own smartwatch, to go on sale on 24 April. See [bbc][9/3].
 
2014 December: Sony cancelled the release of the movie 'The Interview', a comedy about the assassination of the President of North Korea, after hackers attacked Sony Pictures releasing stolen emails and data, and threatened to attack cinemas that showed the film. See [bbc][17/12/2014] & [19/12]. It was widely suspected that the attacks were by N. Korea or its supporters.
Sony later decided to show the Interview "in 200 mostly independent and art-house cinemas on Thursday [25th]" [bbc][24/12/2014], and also released it online.
 
2014 May 19: A US grand jury charged in absentia five officers of China's People's Liberation Army (PLA) with hacking US companies to steal industrial secrets. China vigorously denied the charges. See [.gov][19/5/2014], and [bbc][19/5/2014].
 
2014 May 6: Chinese e-commerce company 'Alibaba' (Alibaba Group Holding Limited) filed Form F-1 for a public share sale in the US, hoping to raise us$1 billion. See [bbc][7/5/2014] and [SEC][6/5/2014].
18 September 2014: "... Alibaba has set the price of its shares at $68 (£42) a day before its debut on the [NYSE]. That values [A.], which accounts for 80% of all online retail sales in China, at $167.6bn. The company raised about $21.8bn, making it one of the biggest share offerings in US history. The final amount could change, depending on how many shares the company's underwriters chose to buy. ..." -- [bbc][18/9/2014].
 
2013, November 7: Twitter, which has never made a profit, made in IPO, offering 70 million shares at us$26. On opening, the share price rose as high as us$50 before closing at us$44.90 valuing the company at us$25 billion -- the G. [7/11], [bbc][25/10].
 
2013, October 18: "Google shares have topped $1,000 (£617) for the first time ... Google's market value is about [us]$334bn ... still well below Apple's $461bn. ..." -- [bbc].
 
2013, September 6: US [NSA] and UK [GCHQ] crack online encryption, "... [NSA SigInt] $254.9m for this year ... The NSA's codeword for its decryption program [is] Bullrun ... [GCHQ's] Tempora program ..." -- the G. [www] & [index], NYT [www], [bbc].
10/9: "A Johns Hopkins computer science professor [Matthew Green] blogs on the NSA and is asked to take it down. ... area of expertise, which is cryptography. ... note from the acting dean of the engineering school asking him to take the post [5/9] down ..." -- the G. [www]. (Apparently the dean later changed his mind.)
21/10: "... Amongst the thousands of documents extracted from the NSA by its ex-employee there is a graph which describes the extent of telephone monitoring and tapping (DNR - Dial Number Recognition) carried out in France. ... over a period of thirty days - from 10 December 2012 to 8 January 2013, 70,3 million recordings of French citizens' telephone data were made by the NSA...." -- Le Monde [21/10/2013].
24/10: "... [Chancellor] Angela Merkel of Germany called Barack Obama to demand explanations over reports that the US [NSA] was monitoring her mobile phone. ..." -- the G. [www], and more [25/10].
31/10: "NSA revelations boost corporate paranoia. German groups say US nearly as big an espionage threat as China ..." -- Financial Times (left wing rag), 31/10/2013.
 
2013, September 3: "Microsoft has agreed a deal to buy Nokia's mobile phone business for €5.4bn (us$7.2bn; £4.6bn) ..." -- [bbc].
"Nokia shareholders have approved the sale of its mobile phone division to Microsoft ..." -- The G. [19/11].
"Microsoft has completed its purchase of Nokia's mobile phone business ..." -- bbc [25/4/2014].
"Microsoft has confirmed it will close its mobile phone unit in Finland, cutting 1,350 jobs. The US software giant paid us$7.2bn (£5.5bn) for Nokia's handset business in 2014, but failed to make a success of new devices. In May, Windows-powered smartphones accounted for fewer than 1% of global smartphone sales. ..." -- bbc [12/7/2016].
 
2013, July 30: Private Bradley Manning (later Chelsea Manning), the US Army whistleblower who leaked 700,000 documents, including the "Collateral Murder" video, to WikiLeaks "was found guilty of all eight offences of which he'd been accused under the 1917 Espionage Act", but not guilty of aiding the enemy -- the G. [www].
21/8: Manning was sentenced to 35 years in prison; see The G. [www] & [index], and [bbc]. (It has been pointed out, as a comparison, that 2nd Lt William Calley "served three and a half years under house arrest at an army base" for leading his platoon in the murder of "70 [to] 80 villagers" at My Lai, S. Vietnam, 1968 -- [www]['13].)
Also see C.M.@['uTube][2010], and Wikileaks revelations @[bbc][8/2/2012].
 
2013, June 7: The Guardian reported that "The [USA] National Security Agency [NSA] has obtained direct access to the systems of Google, Facebook, Apple and other US internet giants ... a previously undisclosed program called Prism, which allows officials to collect material including search history, the content of emails, file transfers and live chat ..." -- [www], [10/6], [index], [indx2].   Microsoft, Yahoo. Google, Facebook, PalTalk, YouTube, Skype, AOL, Apple were listed as members of Prism. Also see [bbc] & [2][8/6].
But, "... In a number of similarly worded statements the technology companies responded denying US government agencies had direct access to its servers and data. ..." -- [abc][8/6].
10/6: "... Edward Snowden, a 29-year-old former CIA employee, outed himself as the Guardian's source ..." -- [www], [bbc], [abc].
uk: The British foreign secretary, Mr Hague, "refused to confirm or deny claims GCHQ has had access to a US spy programme called Prism since June 2010. ..." -- [bbc].
22/6: "US charges Edward Snowden with spying ..." -- [bbc].
4/7: "France's foreign intelligence service [DGSE] intercepts computer and telephone data on a vast scale ..." -- [bbc], after Le Monde.
12/7: "Microsoft helped the NSA get around its encryption systems ..." -- [bbc].
31/7: 'XKeyscore' (X-keyscore) "allows [NSA] analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories" -- the G. [www], [bbc].
 
2013, March 6: The EU fined Microsoft "€561 million (us$731m, £484m) for failing to promote a range of web browsers, rather than just its Internet Explorer program, to users in the European Union. ..." -- [bbc].
 
2012, October 3: The US Senate Permanent Subcommittee On Investigations. 'A two-year bipartisan investigation ... has found that Dept of Homeland Security [DHS] efforts to engage state and local intelligence "fusion centers" has not yielded significant useful information to support federal counterterrorism intelligence efforts. ... produced intelligence of "uneven quality - oftentimes shoddy, rarely timely, sometimes endangering citizens' civil liberties ...' -- [.gov].
 
2012, June: It was a long time coming but Australian print newspapers officially went over the edge of the cliff when Fairfax (the Age & Sydney Morning Herald) announced that it would favour internet publication, close its printing presses in Melbourne and Sydney, reduce staff by 20%, and possibly stop printing the Age and SMH in a year or three.
(Coincidentally, mining billionaire Gina Rinehart had recently bought 19% of Fairfax, and asked for three board positions, apparently also having the intention to be able to influence editorial content, for example, to promote the views of climate-change sceptics. Also see [abc][26/6/2012].)
 
2012, May 18: Facebook shares floated at us$38 (IPO) which valued FB at $104bn -- [bbc]. The shares had fallen below us$29 by the 29th May, and dipped under us$20 on 2nd August -- Grauniad [www].
(31 July 2013: The shares rose to the "$38-a-share float price ... before slipping down to $37.63" after an increase in mobile ad$ -- the G. [www].)
(30 July 2015: "... currently trading at around us$97 a share ..." -- [bbc].)
(27 June 2017: "Facebook hits two billion users ..." [bbc].)
 
2012, March 1: "Apple's stock market value closed above us$500bn (£314bn), ... world's most valuable company. ... once worth as little as $3.19 in 1997, when it faced the possibility of bankruptcy. ... share price closed at $542.44 on Wednesday ..." -- [bbc] ... iPod, iTunes, iPhone, iPad.
(Exxon Mobil regained the "lead" in January 2013 -- [bbc][25/1/'13].)
 
2012, February 2: Facebook, the social-network site, announced plans for a stock market flotation hoping to raise us$5 billion which would value the company at up to us$100 billion -- [bbc], [sec.gov][3/2/'12]. (See 18 May.)
 
2011, May: Linked-in, the work-oriented social network site, floated on the stock exchange.
 
2011, May: Microsoft announced a takeover of the internet phone system, Skype.
(2012, February 15: "Cisco said it would challenge Microsoft's $8.5bn (£5.4bn) takeover of Skype in the European court [calling for] open standards similar to those used for mobile phones." -- [bbc].)
 
2010: The movie, The Social Network, portrayed events around the creation of Facebook.
 
2004: Google, the internet search engine, floated on the stock exchange, raising us$1.67 billion. (Also see 18/10/2013.)
 
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