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Google Says Using HTTP/3 Won’t Help Your SEO

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Google’s John Mueller said on the last Google office hours that using HTTP/3 for your server will likely not have any impact on your SEO or rankings in Google Search.

He said it also would not likely lead to much or any gains in terms of your core web vitals scores.

John said “Google doesn’t use HTTP/3 as a factor in ranking at the moment,” and reconfirmed Google still does not use HTTP/3 for crawling.

John said this at the 6 minute mark in this video:

Here is the transcript:

Flavio asks, could the use of HTTP/3, even indirectly, improve SEO, perhaps because it improves performance?

Google doesn’t use HTTP/3 as a factor in ranking at the moment. As far as I know, we don’t use it in crawling either.

In terms of performance, I suspect the gains users see from using HTTP/3 would not be enough to significantly affect the core web vitals, which are the metrics that we use in the page experience ranking factor.

While making a faster server is always a good idea. I doubt you’d see a direct connection with SEO only from using HTTP/3. Similar to how you’d be hard pressed to finding a direct connection to using a faster kind of RAM in your servers.

Forum discussion at Twitter.




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US Expert: Reject China’s Attempts to Coopt Buddhism

United States: In the face of growing concerns from rights organizations about Chinese authorities’ restrictions on Tibetans, the Chinese Communist Party (CCP) has assumed the role of the most destructive force for Buddhism since Genghis Khan, according to Washington columnist Michael Rubin. has played

In an article for The National Interest magazine, Rubin argued that Beijing’s attempt to use Buddhism to China’s diplomatic advantage is even more cynical and audacious. Rubin compares these initiatives to those by Serbia or Turkey to represent Bosnian or Kosovar Muslims, or by Turkey to represent Armenian culture.

Mao imposed atheism on mainland China and forbade any political ideology that might oppose his particular brand of communism. However, according to Rubin, a senior fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, religion and religious philosophy have always been present in China.

Also Read: ‘Ambedkar also used to say nothing will happen without religion’: Mohan Bhagwat

Rubin said that while the CCP is best known for its attacks on religion, it has also sometimes taken a more cynical stance.

The CCP, under Chinese President Xi Jinping, has stepped up its efforts to appropriate a religion hated as a soft power Trojan horse among its neighbours, a US academic has claimed, worrying about China’s assertiveness. Huh.

He added, “China nevertheless claims that Buddhism is an ancient Chinese religion and has started inviting Buddhist monks from Myanmar, Sri Lanka and even Pakistan’s small Buddhist community, in addition to hosting conferences.

Also Read: Aftab is a Muslim, not a Parsi! Jinnah also belongs to this community

Ironically, Beijing, which has largely destroyed and buried the Buddhist heritage of China, Tibet and Inner Mongolia, has sought to promote goodwill with other countries by allowing travel to the remaining relics.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) claims that the totalitarian regime of the Chinese Communist Party continues to repress fundamental rights.

President Xi Jinping’s administration has implemented massive, invasive surveillance measures, tightened controls on civil society, the media and the Internet, and arbitrarily detained human rights advocates.

Rights organizations claim that in Xinjiang and Tibet, China exercises particularly harsh control.

Also Read: Exploited for 10 years after love marriage, then suddenly left for this reason

Since 2017, the authorities have committed crimes against humanity by arbitrarily detaining over one million Uighurs and other Turkic Muslims and torturing them based on their culture.


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GCORE INTRODUCES IMAGE STACK — CLOUD-BASED IMAGE OPTIMISATION FOR CDN – IT Industry Today

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CANCEL CULTURE WARS: Comedian fears government officials will abuse power to censor free speech

A comedian who said local officials pressured a New Jersey venue into canceling his show fears the government will abuse its power to censor comics.

“We’ve gone from liberal activists convincing business owners not to host us all the way to city government officials essentially racketeering and threatening the venue owners if they’re willing to allow us to perform and speak,” a Los Angeles-based comedian, Josh Denny, told Fox News. Cancel culture will “come for the comedians first, and then everyone else is going to be at the mercy of people abusing their office as a power to exercise their own political beliefs,” Denny said.

WATCH A COMEDIAN DETAIL HIS CONCERNS OVER CANCEL CULTURE: 

WATCH MORE FOX NEWS DIGITAL ORIGINALS HERE

The Williams Center in Rutherford, New Jersey, canceled Denny’s Nov. 10 comedy show hours before the start time. Mayor Frank Nunziato said in a statement that the police believed “the event had the potential for confrontation” and that it was canceled after “after discussions with the owner.”

Denny said any violent threats came from anonymous Twitter users.

“This is cyberterrorism,” he told Fox News. “The reason it’s effective is because everybody is afraid.”

The Los Angeles comedian, who’s touring with Anthony Cumia and Proud Boys founder Gavin McInnes, said four venues canceled on their tour over fear of violence from locals who find their humor offensive or object to their political beliefs. While the Proud Boys have been frequently tied to violence and were involved with the Jan. 6, 2021, attack on the Capitol, Denny said there weren’t any physical incidents at any of the nine performances during the tour.

TUCKER CARLSON: A FREE SOCIETY REQUIRES COMEDIANS

Counterprotesters gather outside Netflix Headquarters on October 20, 2021 in Los Angeles, California, in support of free speech in comedy as other demonstrators demand accountability for Dave Chappelle promoting hate speech against the transgender community in his comedy special. 

Counterprotesters gather outside Netflix Headquarters on October 20, 2021 in Los Angeles, California, in support of free speech in comedy as other demonstrators demand accountability for Dave Chappelle promoting hate speech against the transgender community in his comedy special. 
(Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images)

McInnes has threatened to sue Rutherford for the canceled event.

People “can just call free speech hate speech and have people’s civil rights removed,” Denny said. “The concept of hate speech is one of the worst marketing that we’ve allowed to happen in America because anybody can sort of label ideas they don’t like as hate speech.”

Comedians have faced increased scrutiny in recent years, with critics arguing that humor they consider offensive is hate speech, while supporters argue that such expressions of free speech are an essential part of the industry. Most notably, Dave Chappelle has met significant backlash for jokes about the transgender community, particularly those made in his Netflix special, “The Closer.” 

MONTY PHYTON’S ERIC IDLE BLASTS ANTI-WOKE COMEDIANS, SAYS HE LOATHES CONSERVATIVES: ‘I HATE THEM INTENSELY’ 

Denny previously told Fox News that the people trying to censor comedians were a small and overpronounced group of critics, but some comedians and business owners disappointed him the last few months by giving into the pressure and fearmongering. 

“The so-called truth tellers are now playing to the man,” Denny said. “I’m sort of done giving my peer comedians a pass when they sort of sit on their hands and don’t speak about this when it happens.”

WATCH COMEDIANS SHARE HOW CANCEL CULTURE TRIES TO LIMIT THEIR FREE SPEECH:

CLICK HERE TO GET THE FOX NEWS APP

“If you’re not willing to be uncomfortable to fight for the America we want to live in, I don’t have any time for you, and we are not on the same team,” he added.

The police department declined to comment. Neither the mayor’s office nor the Williams Center immediately responded to a request for comment.

To hear more from Denny on the censorship of comedians, click here


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NYC Company Makes Buildings Eco Friendly / Public News Service

By Phil Roberts for Next City.
Broadcast version by Edwin J. Viera for New York News Connection reporting for the Solutions Journalism Network-Public News Service Collaboration

BlocPower, a clean technology start-up, is greening buildings in New York City and beyond. About 40 percent of U.S. carbon dioxide emissions come from buildings. And when buildings use oil or natural gas as a heating fuel, they also produce smoke that can cause or worsen asthma and other health problems.

In New York City alone, more than 10,000 multifamily buildings still use boilers that run on fuel oil or natural gas, and buildings that primarily serve low-income tenants are least positioned to pay for the expensive upgrades that would eliminate these emissions.

Enter BlocPower, a Black-owned, cleantech startup that works with these buildings to turn them green, swapping oil or gas for heat pumps. The startup helps buildings transition away from fossil-fuel-powered boilers and toward electric heat pumps, without paying large sums of money upfront. BlocPower – and its investors – are repaid from the savings on buildings’ utility bills. In New York City, BlocPower has made it work for over 1,000 buildings, with 24 ongoing projects in other U.S. cities.

“Two of the barriers that we break down are customer acquisition costs and the lack of capital by building owners,” explains Keith Kinch, General Manager and co-Founder at BlocPower. Building owners complete a survey on the BlocPower website and get an analysis of their building’s energy savings potential. But many building owners don’t have capital to finance these projects on their own, so BlocPower provides a no money down lease option. Building owners get a new heating or cooling system and save up to 70 percent on their energy bills. Kinch explains the importance of overcoming those two barriers with the company’s unofficial motto: “We are turning buildings into Teslas!”

Once the heat pumps are installed, BlocPower uses the leasing revenue to cover all maintenance and repairs for 15 years. A proprietary software determines which buildings would benefit most from such a retrofit, and after installation, monitors, analyzes, and manages the heat pumps on every project to ensure optimal performance. BlocPower’s revenues come from the installation profits, financing fees, and the enterprise contracts.

Heat pump technology – which is essentially an air conditioner (or a reverse air conditioner when used to heat a space) is not without its criticisms, depending on the existing energy source of a geographic location. Since heat pumps use electricity, if a home’s electricity source comes from a coal-burning power plant, critics say that a heat pump simply moves emissions from one place to another. BlocPower still believes that heat pumps are important because they provide heat in the winter, cool air in the summer, and they run on electricity.

The scale of what BlocPower has done would not be possible without the NY Green Bank, a state-sponsored entity dedicated to helping finance investments in clean energy, which loaned the company $5 million. “They provide capital that traditional banks do not provide. They’ve done tremendous work in allowing us to complete projects,” says Kinch.

It also helps that the company managed to partner with Goldman Sachs, which loaned them $50 million. It is hard to believe there was a time when BlocPower was not on Wall Street’s radar, but those days are a mere memory now. When asked what changed, Kinch describes the simple way they got the attention of major investors.

“We had to prove that we’re a viable company and have a record of accomplishments. We have both now,” Kinch declares. “When we talk about the work it’s not what we might do. We’ve done this work and we plan to do more. From Wall Street’s end, I think there’s more of an interest in investing in clean energy projects, because it’s a market that will grow.”

In a November 2020 interview, BlocPower founder and CEO Donnel Baird said that he sees a new asset class developing around national clean energy technology projects for investment banks and pension funds, independent of the fluctuations of the stock market. He believes that with the reduction in costs of artificial intelligence, cloud computing, solar energy, and smart heating technologies, this new asset class will become a long-term investment strategy, similar to a bond. (BlocPower did not make Baird available for an interview with Next City.)

BlocPower has done projects for nonprofit organizations, churches, and small commercial properties, but residential is where Kinch says the company looks at the most. “Owners of multi-family buildings in dense urban areas have the most to lose, because they’ve been underserved for years and don’t have the capital.”

For Kinch, the more money they receive, the more they can take their community level solution national. “It (the VC money) gave us more capital to finance projects across New York state. It allows us to expand the company by hiring the right people and build out our software tools so we can expand to other states like Pennsylvania and California.”

Phil Roberts wrote this article for Next City.

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INTERPOL and AFRIPOL collaborate in joint action against cybercrime

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Date: November 30, 2022
Source: Computer Crime Research Center
Law enforcement officials from 27 INTERPOL countries joined forces in the Africa Cyber Surge Operation to counter cybercrime across the continent.

Against the backdrop of the huge financial losses suffered by companies, businesses and individuals, the four-month operation (July to November 2022) saw officers detect, investigate and disrupt cybercrime through coordinated law enforcement activities utilizing INTERPOL platforms, tools and channels, in close cooperation with AFRIPOL.

The Africa Cyber Surge Operation was coordinated by INTERPOL’s Cybercrime Directorate and INTERPOL Support Programme for the African Union (ISPA) in collaboration with AFRIPOL.

The Operation and related events were funded by the UK Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office and the German Federal Foreign Office as part of their ongoing support to INTERPOL and AFRIPOL.


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FTC Fines Google and iHeart Media for Deceptive Ads

Hi all! Duchess here. Along with keeping up with all things TCPA, I love keeping up with updates the on ever changing marketing and advertising rules set by government agencies and on recent settlements and trends.

Google and iHeart Media may have fallen on the not-so-lucky side of the FTC and multiple state AGs to the purposed tune of 9.4 million dollars . In the statement issued by the FTC, the FTC and state AGs announced that the companies aired nearly 29,000 deceptive endorsements by radio personalities promoting their experience with Google’s Pixel phone – when the paid influencers never used the product

“Google and iHeartMedia paid influencers to promote products they never used, showing a blatant disrespect for truth-in-advertising rules,” FTC official Samuel Levine pointed out.

Google paid iHeart Media 2.6 million dollars to have their on-air personalities across the country promote their new Pixel 4 phone, specifically the phone’s camera, and ability to take “studio-like photos”. The radio hosts were provided scripts from Google but were also allowed to put their own personal spin on the advertisement. Many make personal claims of taking photos at family gatherings, their children’s football games or school plays. Capturing all those precious memories to reflect back on, the only problem is the on-air personalities were NEVER provided Google Pixel 4 phones. To be fair, 5 phones were sent to iHeart Media compared to the 43 personalities that promoted the phone and the abilities of the camera!

We have all seen posts on social media, heard your favorite radio DJ or podcast host give a product shout-out. These ads come off as them sharing with you their favorite products and seem totally harmless. What you may not always know is that more than likely these people or companies are being paid or compensated to promote these products to their listeners or followers. Products they may have never used but want you to spend your hard-earned money on.

You may recall in late 2021 the FTC put several hundred companies on notice about the use of fake reviews and flimsy endorsements that are not telling the complete story to consumers at large.  The trend continues with companies being called to task for this type of advertising practice, Google and iHeart Media happen to be the latest to be caught in the crosshairs.

YIKES.

While the FTC endorsement guidance is not new, it’s been in place for over forty years, and the advertising landscape has evolved. Recognizing that advertising practices have changed, moving to social media and online presence, the FTC has issued two helpful guides in the last year for marketers and websites host, laying out best practices and standards for presenting consumers with truthful and accurate advertising of products and or services.

With the busy holiday buying season upon us, make sure you have in place policies and procedures around testimonials and endorsement practices for your company. Or you may find yourself feeling not so lucky in the new year.


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Goldman makes ‘white-label’ bet on white-hot ETF market

Latest news on ETFs

Visit our ETF Hub to find out more and to explore our in-depth data and comparison tools

Goldman Sachs’ decision to become the first big-name institution to launch a “white label” exchange traded fund business is being seen as a large bet that ETFs will continue to seize market share from mutual funds.

The arrangement allows smaller fund managers and new entrants to launch ETFs more quickly and cheaply, with the white labeller providing services such as distribution, marketing, capital market support, custody, compliance, seed funding and administration.

Goldman’s ETF Accelerator will launch in both the US and Europe, but the latter region has seen a particular flurry of activity in recent months.

“The concept of white labelling in Europe has been around quite a while but it has just exploded this summer,” said Andrew Jamieson, global head of ETF product at Citi.

“It’s the hottest ticket in town,” said Hector McNeil, co-founder and chief executive of HANetf, currently Europe’s only white labeller, which is now set to face fierce competition.

Despite the looming threat from rivals, he believed there was room for all of the would-be participants, particularly as only about 10 per cent of European asset managers are currently offering ETFs, versus “closer to 50 per cent of meaningful managers” in the US.

“There is no monopoly on good ideas. Imitation is the best form of flattery. It’s a validation for the industry and the segment,” he added.

White labelling is more advanced in the US, where the likes of Tidal Financial Group, Exchange Traded Concepts and ETF Architect are active.

However, since 2017, when ETF Securities’ Canvas platform was acquired by Legal & General Investment Management and essentially closed to third parties, HANetf has had the European white-label market to itself.

It now has $1.8bn of assets, 40 funds and 40 members of staff on its platform, according to McNeil, who believed the disparity in white-label provision was one reason why the US ETF market has “grown exponentially” to 259 ETF issuers but Europe boasts just 94, according to consultancy ETFGI.

“We have had over 1,000 inquiries since we launched, one-and-a-half to two a day. There are a ton of people out there who are interested,” McNeil said.

“For the last four years HANetf has been the only game in town,” Jamieson said. “Most people have been genuinely surprised by just how successful HAN has been. It’s little wonder that other companies are looking at this success, and wondering how they could replicate it.”

Goldman is far from alone in eyeing this opportunity, however. Asset management servicing group Waystone, Luxembourg-based Axxion, exchange traded product issuer Leverage Shares and crypto specialist Ionic Funds have all announced plans to enter the European market, as well as Tidal, which already has 55 ETFs and $6.5bn of assets on its US platform.

Jamieson believed the development would be particularly attractive to mutual fund providers yet to dip a toe into the ETF waters.

He suggested that outsourcing a swath of functions to a white-label manager “can help catapult a manager forward by six to 12 months in terms of their [ETF] launch trajectory and possibly more”.

For providers with “modest” aspirations in the ETF market, the cost of building their own infrastructure, rather than the white label “plug and play model” would also be “significant”, he added, although five products ought to be the “tipping point”, after which they might perhaps consider developing their own platform.

Without white labelling, “the choice is to build or buy” an ETF platform, McNeil said, “now you can build, buy or rent, or rent for a period of time with a view to bringing it in-house after a period of time”.

Nevertheless, McNeil said that white labelling “is the cheap end of the market and Goldman don’t do anything cheap”. He also believed Goldman would have a “massive conflict of interest”, given that its asset management arm already operates its own ETF range.

“We don’t have our own products so we will never compete with our clients,” he added.

However, Deborah Fuhr, chief executive of ETFGI, played down fears of conflicts of interest, noting that banks such as JPMorgan, HSBC and Deutsche Bank offer services such as ETF market making, custody and research, alongside their own ETFs. “It’s not unusual for banks to have multiple lines of business,” she said.

Another commentator, who requested anonymity, said he also had “every confidence” that Goldman’s ETF Accelerator “will be standalone”, given the white-label platform is being operated in a new division, rather than out of its investment bank or asset management arm.

Goldman said in a statement that “by leveraging our expertise and risk management capabilities, we created a scalable solution as a response to our clients’ needs.

“We have independently operated our own asset management business for decades and whether on the buyside or sellside, we are well positioned to serve the unique needs of our institutional clients in this area.” 

The anonymous commentator believed the new white-label offerings were likely to attract interest. “The traditional mutual fund issuers are often paralysed by fear of the unknown unknowns, therefore their ability to outsource practically everything beyond their own IP [intellectual property] is clearly very appealing,” he said.

Fuhr was also upbeat about Goldman’s chances. “It’s likely they will be successful,” she said. “Many people like Goldman and see it as one of the top Wall Street firms.”

Click here to visit the ETF Hub

 


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Tencent bets on cloud computing growth abroad amid gaming slowdown

Tencent has faced a number of headwinds in 2022 including a Covid-induced slowdown in the Chinese economy and a tougher market for gaming.

Bobby Yip | Reuters

Tencent said it will launch new cloud computing products aimed at overseas markets as it searches for new avenues for growth amid a slowdown in its core online video games business.

On Thursday, Tencent will host a launch event for cloud products specifically aimed at markets outside of China, including a suite of cloud-based audio and video products.

The move marks a realization that Tencent needs to find new sources of growth abroad as China’s economy slows. Besides continued pressure from Covid outbreaks, Chinese tech companies also face a tougher regulatory environment at home.

Tencent, in particular, has been hurt by stricter regulation on online games. Last year, Beijing introduced rules that cut the amount of time people under 18 could play online games to a maximum of three hours a week. Regulators also froze game approvals for several months, meaning companies like Tencent and rival NetEase could not launch and monetize new titles.

While there are signs that the gaming crackdown could now be over, Tencent has felt the impact. Domestic online game revenue fell 7% in the third quarter compared with a year ago.

Tencent’s second-biggest revenue driver is online gaming, so a slowdown in this segment is a drag on overall growth.

The Shenzhen-headquartered company views cloud computing as an area that could pick up the slack. Tencent’s fintech and business services division, which includes its cloud computing division, grew 4% year-on-year in the third quarter.

Chinese tech giants are not only looking to new business divisions for growth, they are also looking for new revenue streams overseas. E-commerce company Alibaba has used its AliExpress and Lazada brand to expand abroad, for example, while Tencent has found big success with its online games.

Now, Tencent is banking on cloud computing. The products released Wednesday focus on audio and visual products such as live streaming for e-commerce or online meetings.

The products are aimed at companies that want such services but don’t necessarily want to maintain the infrastructure, such a servers, or build those features themselves.

Read more about China from CNBC Pro

Tencent’s strategy could focus on trying to sign up global firms with a presence in China as well as Chinese companies expanding abroad. Already, companies such as BMW use some of Tencent’s cloud products.

As the Chinese firm expands overseas, it will enter a very competitive cloud computing market dominated by U.S. giants Amazon and Microsoft. Tencent’s international push with cloud computing is relatively late compared with that of rival Alibaba, which expanded outside China in the last few years. Now, Alibaba is among the five largest cloud computing firms in the world.

Tencent’s focus on audio and video products plays to its strengths as one of the world’s largest gaming companies and the owner of WeChat, China’s most popular messaging app with over 1 billion users.


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