The tech industry has had so many screwups this year, it’s hard to keep track. But with Life’s Prism 2018 edition of Tech Turkeys, we’re gonna try.
Unfortunately for the tech industry, there’s no saving its turkeys. The list of tech screwups, blunders and embarrassments is long this year. And much of it intersects with politics because Facebook, Twitter, Google and Reddit are now ground zero for election interference, fake news, hacking and online troll wars that spill into the real world.
I guess you can’t expect much from a year that began with Logan Paul, one of YouTube’s biggest stars, publishing a video that included irreverent scenes with a dead body he found in a Japanese forest.
It didn’t get better from there. The year has seen massive hacks of Facebook, tech hearings on Capitol Hill and a $20 million fine levied against Elon Musk by the Securities and Exchange Commission over tweets made by the Tesla CEO.
And that doesn’t even include the run-of-the-mill antics of runaway Silicon Valley. You know, the scores of scooters that littered San Francisco, Santa Monica, Washington and other cities. Or the boom and inevitable bust of bitcoin. Or MoviePass, the too-good-to-be-true, oh-wait-it-is-too-good-to-be-true movie ticket subscription service.
The much-debated smartphone notch gets a mention, now that it’s part of the design of nearly all high-end phones. Also, it’s worth noting that prices for those phones have risen at least 13 percent over the past two years, much higher than the roughly 2 percent inflation rate in the US.
Beyond all that, the tech industry still hasn’t figured out how to hire, retain and promote women and minorities. In October, Intel said it was “proud” that women make up 26.8 percent of its employee base, up from 24.7 percent in 2015. Yay?
It’s been an emotional, exhausting and seemingly nonstop year. Maybe 2019 can be less turkey-filled.