Rubinstein Leaves HP, Twitter Can Block Tweets By Country, Cook Defends Apple On Worker Standards

Breaking news from your editors at Fast Company, with updates all day.

Jon Rubinstein Leaves HP. Rubinstein, formerly of Apple and then lead at Palm during its efforts to rival the iPhone, is leaving HP. It’s being spun as simple fulfillment of contractual agreements, signed when HP bought Palm. But with the killing-off of HP’s Pre smartphone and tablet efforts, a disorganized decision process about webOS and news that Jon has no current plans a different conclusion can easily be drawn. –HP


–Updated 1:30 p.m. EST

Apple TV Buzz: OLEDs And Remote Controls. The freshest leaks about Apple’s rumored TV are suggesting that it could be a Siri-controlled OLED, and coming out as soon as this spring. Not surprising, the Register explains, since competitors LG and Samsung had theirs on display at CES this year. Apple’s also filed a patent that hints at what a (non-Siri) remote control going with it could look like–a touchscreen device which would surface only the most used buttons, tucking away extra buttons out of view. —NS

–Updated 9:30 a.m. EST

FBI Looking For Help Monitoring Tweets. The FBI is joining retailers, TV networks, and others in looking for a way to mine social networks for information useful to them. New Scientist noticed an open application that the FBI released last week, calling for companies willing to build a “secure, light weight web application portal, using mash-up technology.” The FBI hopes to track “publicly available” tweets and posts to monitor breaking event and threats, and possibly even predict them. —NS

Second German Victory For Apple In Samsung Suit. That’s two in a row for Apple–after ruling against Samsung in the first of three suits it filed against Apple last week, a court has smacked down a second suit. A third ruling, for the last of three patents suit Samsung has filed in the country, is expected next week. —NS

–Updated 7:30 a.m. EST


Tim Cook Defends Apple’s Worker Safety Concerns. Apple CEO Tim Cook has sent a letter to his staff, responding to a detailed report in the New York Times that described dangerous worker conditions at Apple’s supplier factories in China. In the letter, leaked to 9to5Mac, he stressed that Apple would not “stand still or turn a blind eye to problems in our supply chain.” Earlier this month Apple released a report describing an audit of labor and human rights, environmental procedures, and health and safety standards of its suppliers. —NS

Twitter Can Censor Tweets By Country. Twitter can now block tweets from certain countries while keeping them visible in others. The reason, Twitter explained in a blog post, was that certain “countries that have different ideas about the contours of freedom of expression.” To abide by those policies (keep everyone happy), in the past, Twitter was forced to block content globally. Twitter says it will be “transparent” about when content is blocked. —NS

Legislators Want Google Privacy Probe. Republican and Democratic lawmakers are calling for a closer look at Google’s latest privacy changes, to check if they violate the agreement Google signed with the U.S. Federal Trade Commission late last year. Under its new privacy settings, Google will pool together user information it had collected from most of its different services–something, the lawmakers believe, could make it difficult for users to protect their private data. —NS

–Updated 5:45 a.m. EST

[Image: Flickr user APM Alex]


Yesterday’s Fast Feed: Visual Revenue Gets $1.7 Million Funding Boost, Airbnb Records 5 Million Bookings, Grows Globally, Google Adds Public Alerts, and more!