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Japanese ad giant admits to overcharging more than 100 clients

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Tokyo-based advertising giant Dentsu has acknowledged that it overcharged more than 100 clients after it conducted a month-long investigation into its own financial records.

The probe turned up at total of 633 business transactions that warranted suspicion — worth about $ 2.3 million overall. 

In some cases, its agency properties charged fees for ads that were never placed. There were also instances in which a campaign’s performance was exaggerated in order to hike up the price.

It’s not clear which of Dentsu’s clients were affected, but the holding company said in a statement that it had contacted and apologized to each of them. It also vowed to refund the sum in full. Read more…

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Google’s smart speaker will be cheaper than the Amazon Echo, report says

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Amazon might be getting a little worried.

Pricing details for Google’s upcoming smart speaker, the Amazon Echo-like Google Home, may have just been leaked and they suggest that Google’s speaker will be a lot cheaper than Amazon’s.

The speaker will sell for $ 129 when it goes on sale later this year, according to a report in Android Police. Google Home, which the company first introduced at its I/O developer conference in May, is a speaker that also has Google Assistant built in. (You can preview the assistant in the company’s new messaging app, Allo.) It can also control smart home devices, complete searches and help you manage tasks like managing your grocery list. Read more…

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Microsoft: Government’s data gag order practices worse than first thought

Microsoft has significantly upped the tally of U.S. government gag orders slapped on demands for customer information, according to court documents filed last week.

In a revised complaint submitted to a Seattle federal court last Friday, Microsoft said that more than half of all government data demands were bound by a secrecy order that prevented the company from telling customers of its cloud-based services that authorities had asked it to hand over their information.

The original complaint — the first round in a lawsuit Microsoft filed in April against the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and Attorney General Loretta Lynch — had pegged the number of data demands during the past 18 months at 5,624. Of those, 2,576, or 46%, were tagged with secrecy orders that prevented Microsoft from telling customers it had been compelled to give up their information.

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Game of Thrones’ Battle of the Bastards used a lot less CGI than you’d think


SPOILER ALERT: If you haven’t yet watched episode nine of the sixth season of Game of Thrones, you’ll want to bookmark this post for later and watch the show first. When Jon Snow decides to take on Lord Ramsay Bolton in the Battle of Winterfell, the odds are stacked against him. His army is only half the size of Bolton’s, his brother Rickon Stark is still in the clutches of the enemy and he can’t win the war of the minds that Bolton is so very good at. And so we get to witness the Battle of the Bastards, with…

This story continues at The Next Web


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