The Outline

The Future

The Future
The Future Nov 20

Spam is back

It seemed like we had defeated electronic junk mail. Then the spammers rose from the dead.

The Future Nov 17

YouTube just took down the creepy kids’ channel Toy Freaks

Toy Freaks, formerly a YouTube-verified channel that had more than 7 million subscribers, “has been terminated for violating YouTube’s Community Guidelines.”

The Future Nov 17

Two passwords are always better than one

Two-factor authentication adoption rates are low. Is it because cybersecurity experts are making the perfect the enemy of the good?

The Future Nov 16

Is HQ Trivia the future of TV?

An app that broadcasts a gameshow that anyone can participate in 12 times a week has gone viral.

The Future Nov 15

Publishers paying George Takei to promote stories isn’t just weird — it’s an FTC violation

Without disclosure over advertising, news organizations and “influencers” could be in hot water.

The Future Nov 15

Why is this company tracking where you are on Thanksgiving?

A data collection service called SafeGraph collected 17 trillion location markers for 10 million smartphones during the holiday last year.

The Future Nov 14

Twitter parties are Tupperware parties reborn

Twitter parties are a bizarre mix of product zealotry and social bonding.

The Future Nov 13

Not every article needs a picture

It is dumb to keep forcing images into every story online.

The Future Nov 10

Facebook’s idiotic solution to revenge porn

The company’s latest proposal is cruel and potentially harmful to victims.

The Future Nov 10

YouTube is not child abuse

Some videos are bad for kids, but it’s nothing a parent can’t handle.

The Future Nov 09

How a DIY YouTuber became the target of a sexist conspiracy theory

Dale Dougherty, the founder of the “maker movement,” accused a Chinese woman of being a fraud despite having no evidence.

The Future Nov 09

Twitter’s new update leaves accessibility users behind

Twitter neglected to roll out the new 280 character limit for vision-impaired people who use a screen reader.

The Future Nov 08

When disability tech is just a marketing exercise

Companies love to get press for disability tech projects, but they often aren’t all that interested in actually putting real money behind them.

The Future Nov 07

Instagram is loving nature to death

Lesser-known lookouts are suffering under the weight of sudden online fame.

The Future Nov 06

Everyone hates e-bikes

E-bikes could be the future of urban transit, but no one wants to let them on the road.

The Future Nov 06

Remember the Palm Pre?

We’ve been using the sadly forgotten smartphone, and we’re taking your calls about it.

The Future Nov 03

Trump’s first real tweet was on July 6, 2011

Our theory: It was inspired by Obama.

The Future Nov 03

Going rogue in Silicon Valley

Tech companies have a history of giving low-level employees high-level access.

The Future Nov 02

Disinformation is a two-way street

Lawmakers seem to forget that countering Russian influence in future elections will require work at home.

The Future Oct 31

Could Twitter take a page from Something Awful?

We talked to the founder of Something Awful about how it puts banned users on display.