Hashtag Trending, Feb. 22 – Robinhood gets grilled; Canada issues warning to Facebook; Instacart’s anti-fraud policy causes headaches

Robinhood gets grilled over its position during the Gamestop fiasco, Canada issues warning to Facebook after the tech giant bans news on its platform in Australia, and Instacart’s anti-fraud policy causes headaches with its workers.

It’s all the tech news that’s popular right now. Welcome to Hashtag Trending! We hope you had a good weekend. It’s Monday, February 22, and I’m your host Alex Coop.


There’s still a ton of chatter about Robinhood CEO Vlad Tenev appearance before Congress last week. Lawmakers grilled Tenev about the app’s controversial response to the GameStop stock revolt. Tenev sat there defending Robinhood against allegations that trading restrictions it put in place at the height of the GameStop frenzy disadvantaged those smaller investors in favour of bigger institutional clients. In the end, he did little to reassure investors and the rest of the world that Robinhood wouldn’t repeat the same mistakes of the past, but he did say, “Look I’m sorry for what happened.” [LinkedIn]


Shortly after Facebook shut off Australia’s news on its platform, Canada is raising the alarm bells and signalling its intent to make Facebook pay for news. Facebook blocked all Australian news content on its service over proposed legislation requiring it and other tech giants like Google to pay fees to Australian publishers for news links. Reuters is reporting that Canadian Heritage Minister Steven Guilbeault is charged with crafting similar legislation. It’s to be unveiled in coming months. Guilbeault says Canada could adopt the Australian model, which requires Facebook and Google to reach deals to pay news outlets whose links drive activity on their services or agree on a price “through binding arbitration.”


And lastly, Motherboard’s reporting on Instacart temporarily suspending its gig workers accounts for cancelling customer orders is creating a stir online. What appears to be a new addition to Instacart’s fraud policy was not communicated with its workers, according to the story, and the company claims these temporary “pauses,” which last at least 24 hours, are a preventative measure against fraud. But workers say Instacart is suspending their accounts after legitimate cancellations for reasons like, a customer not being present for in-person deliveries, customer threats and wrong addresses.


That’s all the tech news that’s trending right now. Hashtag Trending is a part of the ITWC Podcast network. Add us to your Alexa Flash Briefing or your Google Home daily briefing. Make sure to sign up for our Daily IT Wire Newsletter to get all the news that matters directly in your mailbox every day. I’m Alex Coop, thanks for listening!

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Jim Love, Chief Content Officer, IT World Canada
Alex Coop
Alex Coophttp://www.itwc.ca
Former Editorial Director for IT World Canada and its sister publications.

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