Tech Fix: The Tech That Was Fixed in 2018 and the Tech That Still Needs Fixing

Personal technology was so awful this year that nobody would think you were paranoid if you dug a hole and buried your computer, phone and smart speaker under six feet of earth.

Facebook made headlines week after week for failing to protect our privacy and for spreading misinformation. Juul, the e-cigarette company under investigation for marketing products to teenagers, emerged as the Joe Camel of the digital era. And don’t get me started on just how intrusive online advertising has become.

On the other hand, there was good technology this year that improved how we live, like parental controls to curb smartphone addiction and a web browser with built-in privacy protections.

For the last two years, I’ve reviewed the tech that needed the most fixing and the tech that was fixed for the first time. This year, I’m repeating the tradition in hopes that the list of lows gets shorter and the list of highs gets longer over time.

Tech That Still Needs FixingSocial media

Facebook this year was analogous to a cheating romantic partner who was caught betraying us and apologizing — only to be caught again weeks later.

The social network admitted that Cambridge Analytica, a political consulting firm, improperly gained access to the data of millions. Later, the company confessed that a security breach exposed the data of 30 million accounts. This month, a New York Times investigation revealed that Facebook gave tech giants like Netflix and Spotify special access to user data, including private messages.

Other social media companies also stumbled. Twitter came under fire for being slow to react to

Keep reading this article on The New York Times Media & Advertising.