Tuesday, May 21, 2024

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Shopify crosses $1 billion sales; Apple wins patent dispute; FTC condemns Facebook

Canadian e-commerce company Shopify crossed the $1 billion sales mark last quarter. The company, born in Ottawa, saw a 57 per cent increase in sales year-over-year. Shopify saw explosive growth during the COVID-19 pandemic when shops transitioned to selling online. But now that countries are easing restrictions, Shopify saw another boost in sales as its solutions also help manage in-person shopping. The recent announcement marks Shopify’s fifth consecutive profitable quarter.

Up next, Apple successfully persuaded a federal judge to throw out a $308 million suit it lost over a patent dispute. The tech giant was locked in a legal battle with Personalized Media Communications LLC, a privately-held licensing firm that alleged an iTunes feature infringed upon its patents. Although the jury sided with the PMC, further investigation confirmed that PMC had deliberately delayed its patent filing, which is a tactic to get a bigger payout.

Facebook had blocked researchers from New York University for allegedly violating its terms of service. Facebook said that the researchers collected user data without their consent for a political ad study, citing a privacy consent agreement by the Federal Trade Commission. Now, the FTC has rebuffed the claim. In an email to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, the FTC wrote that “its consent decree does not bar Facebook from creating exceptions for good faith research.” Moreover, the FTC said it supports efforts to shed light on “opaque business practices” around “surveillance-based advertising.”

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