EdTech Situation Room Episode 143

Welcome to episode 143 of the EdTech Situation Room from July 31, 2019, where technology news meets educational analysis. This week Jason Neiffer (@techsavvyteach) and Wesley Fryer (@wfryer) discussed U.S. Senator Josh Hawley’s proposed “SMART Act” (the Social Media Addiction Reduction Technology Act), the state of adblocking online in mid-2019, and amazing developments in the world of eSports with a recent Fortnight payout of over $30 million for a single tournament. Apple’s quarterly announcements including its continued transition to services for revenue, the implications of those trends for Apple portable hardware in schools, and ChromeOS updates including facial recognition “face unlock” as well as continued changes to default Flash support were also highlighted. Additional headlines analyzed during the show included FaceApp’s terms of service and privacy implications for users, the FTC’s class action lawsuit settlement against Equifax, Google’s banning of certain DIY advertisements for iFixIt, continued calls for smartphone backdoor encryption by the US Department of Justice, and an incredible “classified artificial brain” project underway by the National Reconnaissance Office (NRO) in the United States. Geeks of the Week included the “Unreal Mobile” smartphone service, the new website “”Hack the Moon,” and the podcast “Your Undivided Attention.” With the impending demise of “Google Hangouts on Air” for YouTube Live, this was our first show to use StreamYard.com as well as Restream.io to both live stream and archive our show simultaneously on YouTube Live as well as Facebook Live. Please follow us on Twitter @edtechSR for updates, and join us LIVE on Wednesday nights if you can (normally) at 10 pm Eastern / 9 pm Central / 8 pm Mountain / 7 pm Pacific or 3 am UTC. All shownotes are available on http://edtechSR.com/links.


  1. EdTech Situation Room Listener Survey: wfryer.me/edtechsr
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  6. Jason Neiffer (@techsavvyteach) – blog: blog.ncce.org
  7. Wes Fryer (@wfryer) – blog: speedofcreativity.org
  8. Josh Hawley’s bill to limit your Twitter time to 30 minutes a day, explained (Recode, 31 July 2019)
  9. A lawmaker wants to end ‘social media addiction’ by killing features that enable mindless scrolling (Washington Post, 30 July 2019)
  10. How Phones Made the World Your Office, Like It or Not (New York Times, 31 July 2019)
  11. Fortnite World Cup has handed out $30 million in prizes, and cemented its spot in the culture (TechCrunch, 28 July 2019)
  12. Kyle Bugha Giersdorf 16 wins Fortnite World Cup singles and $3 million (ESPN, 28 July 2019)
  13. Esports celebs, influencers could push prize pools to new heights (ESPN, 28 July 2019)
  14. Adblocking: How About Nah? (EFF, 25 July 2019)
  15. The iPhone now makes up less than half of Apple’s business (The Verge, 30 July 2019)
  16. Apple Card: company reveals credit card launching next month (The Guardian, 30 July 2019)
  17. Google Chrome 76 arrives, makes it harder to use Flash and easier to dodge paywalls (The Verge, 30 July 2019)
  18. Face Unlock Coming Soon To Chrome OS And May Debut With ‘atlas’ Alongside Pixel 4 (ChromeUnboxed, 31 July 2019)
  19. FaceApp: Deleting it doesn’t mean you get your data back (CNN Business, 26 July 2019)
  20. FTC says ‘you will be disappointed’ if you choose $125 for Equifax payout (Verge, 31 July 2019)
  21. Equifax Breach Official Claim Filing Website (FTC)
  22. An Open Letter to the FTC on Google’s Banning of Repair Business Ads (iFixit; 16 July 2019)
  23. Tech firms “can and must” put backdoors in encryption, AG Barr says (ArsTechnica, 23 July 2019)
  24. IT’S SENTIENT: Meet the classified artificial brain being developed by US intelligence programs (Verge, 31 July 2019)
  25. Japan once again shoots a bullet at an asteroid… and the video is amazing (SyFyWire, 29 July 2019)
  26. Jason’s Geek of the Week: Unreal Mobile
  27. Wes’ Geeks of the Week: Hack The Moon (@wehackthemoon) – VIDEO: “Deciphering The Vast Scale of the Universe” and Your Undivided Attention Podcast (@HumaneTech_)
  28. Our livestreaming tools: StreamYard.com and Restream.io