Aarti Shahani

Regulate us. That's the unexpected message from one of the country's leading tech executives. Microsoft President Brad Smith argues that governments need to put some "guardrails" around engineers and the tech titans they serve.

If public leaders don't, he says, the Internet giants will cannibalize the very fabric of this country.

"We need to work together; we need to work with governments to protect, frankly, something that is far more important than technology: democracy. It was here before us. It needs to be here and healthy after us," Smith says.

Updated at 3:08 p.m. ET

State attorneys general of 48 states, Puerto Rico and the District of Columbia announced a major probe Monday into Google's dominance in search and advertising for practices that harm competition as well as consumers. Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton is leading the bipartisan pack.

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Lisa Cameron is a member of the British Parliament. She's also a victim, and survivor, of online trolls.

Cameron was new to politics in 2015, when she was elected in East Kilbride, Scotland. She'd been a clinical psychologist, a wife, a mom, and a trade union representative — the kind of political newcomer democracies want to run for office.

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So as we just heard, many experts say 8chan has become this big, powerful, dangerous site. And we want to dig a little deeper and hear a little more about how it has become a real go-to for white terrorist extremists.

Here's NPR's Aarti Shahani.

Updated at 1:23 p.m. ET

Facebook has a long track record in deception: telling people one thing, while doing another. That's according to federal regulators, at least one of whom says the government missed its chance to find out why the company has repeatedly misled its users.

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Mark Zuckerberg has a stunning new responsibility. The founder of Facebook is now required personally to give regular progress reports directly to federal regulators. He needs to show Facebook's progress in protecting the privacy of users. This is part of a newly announced settlement between Facebook and the Federal Trade Commission, a settlement that also includes a $5 billion fine for past violations. NPR's Aarti Shahani is on this story. Hi there, Aarti.

AARTI SHAHANI, BYLINE: Hi.

INSKEEP: What does Zuckerberg himself have to do exactly?

Updated at 12:16 p.m. ET

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg will have to personally answer to federal regulators under an agreement to settle a privacy case with the Federal Trade Commission that includes a $5 billion penalty for the giant social media company, the agency announced Wednesday. Separately, Facebook will pay $100 million to settle a case with the Securities and Exchange Commission for making misleading disclosures about the risk that users' data would be misused, the SEC said.

Updated at 1:25 p.m. ET

Given Facebook's track record of broken promises over privacy, U.S. senators said Tuesday that the social media giant can't be trusted when it comes to plans to launch a digital currency.

"Facebook is dangerous," Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-Ohio, said at a Senate Banking Committee hearing. "Like a toddler who's gotten his hands on a book of matches, Facebook has burned down the house over and over, and called every arson a learning experience."

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Twitter is creating a warning label to flag and suppress political tweets that break the platform's rules on acceptable speech. It's a bold step for the company, which has come under sharp criticism for its handling of tweets by major political figures including President Trump.

In one Facebook post, he stands tall in yellow camouflage, decorated with badges. He promises he'll increase the salaries of teachers in Sudan. In another post, he hunches over a fire, cooking food with locals.

Facebook says that by next year people on apps like Whatsapp and Messenger will be able to basically text payments. This news comes as regulators are asking if the tech giant is already too powerful.

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Updated at 11:29 a.m. ET

Google is quietly assuming the role of Huawei emissary, according to a senior Huawei official, in effect negotiating with the Commerce Department on behalf of the Chinese telecom giant that has been blacklisted in the U.S.

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Social media giants say they will work with heads of state to regulate extremist content that spreads online. One key player has refused to endorse the plan - the United States. NPR's Aarti Shahani reports.

Updated at 6:00 p.m. ET Friday

The ride-hailing company Uber made its stock market debut on Friday, and promptly saw share prices dip.

Uber priced its shares at $45, the lower end of the possible range, aiming for a total diluted market value of about $82 billion. After a delay of two and a half hours, trading started with the stock at $42, down more than 6 percent over that initial price.

Facebook expects to pay a fine of up to $5 billion in a settlement with federal regulators. The tech giant disclosed that figure in its first-quarter 2019 financial results.

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The U.S. has long exported its culture abroad — think Coca-Cola, Hollywood and hip-hop. Facebook was once praised for spreading free-speech values. But the world is pushing back with different values, which Facebook is importing to the U.S. with the company's ban on white extremist content.

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Two words for you: flying taxis. That's right. In the not-so-distant future, you'll open your ride-hailing app and, in addition to ground options like car, SUV, scooter or bicycle, you'll see on-demand air flight.

At least that's according to the optimists at South by Southwest, the annual tech-music-film convention in Austin, Texas.

Over the weekend in Austin, Texas, South by Southwest became a major presidential forum. More than half a dozen candidates showed up to the annual music, arts and technology convention. Democrats competed with each other to be the tough-on-tech candidate, a development in line with the party's move to the left but at odds with its reliance on tech donors.

Updated at 6:35 p.m. ET

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg promises to bring end-to-end encryption and self-destruct features to Messenger and other Facebook apps, in a move meant to signal the tech behemoth's commitment to privacy. He announced the proposed changes in a a blog post Wednesday.

As Facebook struggles to repair its image after a global privacy scandal, the social media giant is trying to make the platform a place that Mark Zuckerberg says encourages "meaningful interactions between people."

One person who embodies Zuckerberg's message is Lola Omolola, an ebullient 41-year-old Nigerian-American woman who was highlighted at Facebook's annual conference in May.

The U.S. takes credit for creating the Internet, and the European Union seems determined to govern it. On Friday, a sweeping new directive goes into effect called the General Data Protection Regulation, or GDPR. Taken together, its 99 articles represent the biggest ever change to data privacy laws. The new rules have implications for U.S. Internet users too.

Here are answers to three questions you might have about the new law and its potential impacts.

What is GDPR?

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Despite criticism for sharing disinformation and sharing people's data, Facebook reported another quarter of record earnings. NPR's Aarti Shahani reports.

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