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A new proposal by Republican lawmakers to overhaul a critical law that protects online platforms already looks dead in the water, according to one legal expert, though another prominent legal scholar believes it could fuel bipartisan reform for tech regulation.
(Bloomberg) -- A Tesla Inc. electric car that “no one” appeared to be driving crashed late Saturday in Texas, erupting into flames and killing the two passengers, according to local authorities.One victim was found in the front passenger seat of a 2019 Model S and the other was in the rear, Harris County Precinct 4 Constable Mark Herman said in a telephone interview. The car ran into a tree in the Carlton Woods subdivision near The Woodlands after traveling at high speed and failing to navigate a turn.The position of the victims, statements and other physical evidence suggest that “no one was driving the vehicle at the time of impact,” Herman said. “It’s still under investigation.”Herman said his office is coordinating with federal authorities, without specifying which ones, and didn’t know whether the Autopilot feature was engaged. It took more than 30,000 gallons of water to extinguish the fire, which burned for four hours, he added.Tesla didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment Sunday.Federal officials have criticized Tesla for fire risks related to the battery packs in its cars and for not doing enough to keep drivers from using its driver-assist function inappropriately. In a hearing last year, the National Transportation Safety Board’s chairman said that “it’s time to stop enabling drivers in any partially automated vehicle to pretend that they have driverless cars.”NTSB, which has investigated numerous previous Tesla crashes, isn’t planning on opening a new probe into the latest incident, spokesman Chris O’Neil said.Tesla Chief Executive Officer Elon Musk has defended the safety record of his company’s vehicles. This week, he shared a report on Twitter, saying that a Tesla with Autopilot engaged is now approaching a “10 times lower” chance of an accident than an average vehicle.(Updates with NTSB’s comment in 7th paragraph.)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.
(Bloomberg) -- Facebook Inc. will announce on Monday a suite of new audio products, including its own take on Clubhouse, as well as a push into podcasts aided by Spotify Technology S.A., Recode reported, citing sources it didn’t identify.Some products won’t be available until later this spring, Recode said. The plan includes an audio-only version of Messenger Rooms, the video chat feature Facebook introduced last year to compete with Zoom Video Communications Inc.Facebook will also add a Clubhouse-like product that allows users to talk on a virtual stage, and a feature that lets users post voice messages on their newsfeeds. Furthermore, it will launch a podcast discovery product in connection with Spotify, Recode said.The plans come just as Clubhouse closed a Series C funding round led by Andreessen Horowitz. Bloomberg News reported earlier that the round would value the one-year-old startup at about $4 billion, quadruple the estimate from January.Multiple social media giants are working to create their own versions of the popular Clubhouse product. Twitter Inc. introduced one called Spaces. Microsoft Corp.’s LinkedIn and Slack Technologies Inc. have also said they’re working on similar features for their networks.Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive officer, appeared live during a Clubhouse discussion this year, and the company ordered multiple teams to research audio-related chat products that could rival Clubhouse, people familiar with the efforts have said.“We’ve been connecting people through audio and video technologies for many years, and are always exploring new ways to improve that experience for people,” Facebook told Recode.Separately, Apple Inc. is preparing a subscription podcast service it may announce as early as Tuesday, Recode reported, without specifying how it obtained the information. Apple declined to comment to Recode.(Updates with background throughout)For more articles like this, please visit us at bloomberg.comSubscribe now to stay ahead with the most trusted business news source.©2021 Bloomberg L.P.