DXC Technology weekly Banking & Capital Markets news round up
This week’s curated DXC Technology Banking & Capital Markets round-up is available covering tech news from AI to Workplace.
DXC Technology weekly Banking & Capital Market news round-up
26th February 2021
Welcome to the DXC curated news round-up.
A weekly analysis of banking and capital markets technology news and trends.
We highlight innovative and nascent news, regulation and research, including DXC thought leadership, exploring new ideas, technologies and best practices.
To thrive in the complex and competitive financial market, banking and capital market firms need products and services that work for 21st century customers and meet regulatory obligations. Scale your digital efforts and deliver the services of tomorrow with DXC Technology solutions stack and our robust partner ecosystem.
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DXC Banking and Capital Markets capabilities
$3.3bn revenue in financial services IT and business services.
1. The battle of algorithms: Uncovering offensive AI
2. 3 requirements for successful artificial intelligence programs
3. FICO : What people really want from their banks
4. BoA Chief Operations And Technology Officer Shares Her Thoughts On The Future Of Work
5. Not all banking crises involve panics
6. Jane Fraser Has to Fix Citigroup. It Will Be Tough
7. Wells Fargo’s Strategy For Innovation
8. DeFi: On Blockchain and Smart Contracts
9. Corporate CFOs Not Planning to Buy Bitcoin, Gartner Survey Shows
10. AWS has avoided antitrust scrutiny so far.
11. How China Exploited a U.S. Tech Supplier
12. DXC & Temenos Reimagining Core Banking Transformation
13. DXC a Leader in AWS integration
14. Chinese microlending is getting weird and dangerous
15. ACCC welcomes fintech competition
16. Consumer fintechs will fail
17. Britain Thinks - PSR Consumer Research
18. BoE plans break from EU with tougher bank capital rule
19. Digital transformation of supervision picks up pace
20. Gabriel Makhlouf: Leading through the pandemic
Disclaimer: Please note this is for information purposes only and is not intended to be a definitive, exhaustive or final list of legal, regulatory or other developments relevant to your business
AI, Analytics and Automation
<p><strong>1.</strong> The Making of AI Snake Oil</p>
<p><strong>2.</strong> When Should You Use AI to Solve Problems?</p>
<p><strong>3.</strong> How Midsize Companies Can Use Data to Compete with Digital Giants</p>
<p><strong>4.</strong> ICO launches data analytics tool kit</p>
<p><strong>5.</strong> How data trusts can protect privacy</p>
1. The Making of AI Snake Oil
Towards Data Science: The CEO of an ageing tech company stands before a rarefied audience of bankers, diplomats and investors at a think-tank in Manhattan and declares, “I want you to think about data as the next natural resource.” It’s like oil and steam, but “the only limit is yourself.”
This was in 2013 and the trope of data being the new oil was already starting to show its age. From its coinage in 2006 by British entrepreneur Clive Humby to its effervescent adoption by marketers and analysts of every variety, the breathless hype is perhaps best captured by management consulting firm KPMG: “Data is the new oil — and the price is going up.”
The AI frenzy pervading boardrooms, cascading from CEO to foot soldier, was part of a larger hype cycle. That of popular imagination.
By 2020, we were to have driverless cars rendering millions jobless, computing hardware to emulate human intelligence, and software models to reverse engineer the brain. These modest milestones were mere pit stops towards the Singularity, that hallowed point at which AI achieves consciousness and far exceeds human intelligence.
2. When Should You Use AI to Solve Problems?
HBR: Business leaders often pride themselves on their intuitive decision-making. They didn’t get to be division heads and CEOs by robotically following some leadership checklist. Of course, intuition and instinct can be important leadership tools, but not if they’re indiscriminately applied.
The rise of artificial intelligence has exposed flaws in traits we have long valued in executive decision makers. Algorithms have revealed actions once considered prescient to be lucky, decision principles previously considered sacred to be unproven, and unwavering conviction to be myopic. Look no further than the performance of actively managed investment funds to see the shortcomings of time-honored human decision-making approaches. With rare exceptions, these funds, many managed by celebrated investors, underperform index funds over the long term, and AI’s algorithmic trades commonly outperform human ones.
AI won’t supplant intuitive decision-making any time soon. But executives will need to disrupt their own decision-making styles to fully exploit AI’s capabilities. They will have to temper their convictions with data, test their beliefs with experiments, and direct AI to attack the right problems.
3. How To Use Data to Compete with Giants
HBR: The pandemic has changed the business environment dramatically, both for B2C and B2B companies. Consumer behavior has shifted from in-store to online, and to a significant extent, it will not shift back. The flood of home deliveries has bankrupted scores of firms who traditionally relied on in-person interactions, with midsize companies (with limited resources) hit especially hard.
In the B2B markets, buyer behavior has shifted just as dramatically. Electronic orders have displaced sales calls in many companies; one industrial distributor, for example, has seen its digital business climb steadily, now reaching over 60%.
The digital giants have benefited from this shift and have grown in size and capability. Wayfair, for example, is rapidly taking over huge swaths of the furniture market, and Amazon is relocating its local distribution facilities to enable two-hour deliveries of its various products.
All companies have to adjust — but in particular, midsize ones, who are very vulnerable but also potentially very agile. Their vulnerability stems from having fewer resources than their giant competitors and less diversification to shield against the impact of price wars.
4. ICO launches data analytics tool kit
The UK Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) has announced the launch of a data analytics toolkit. The toolkit takes organisations through some of the key data protection points which they should consider when planning projects which involve data analytics and personal data. The toolkit is part of the ICO’s Artificial Intelligence (AI) priority work, and builds on the ICO’s earlier Guidance on Explaining Decisions Made with AI and Guidance on AI and Data Protection.
The toolkit will be most helpful to you if your organisation is at the beginning of your data analytics project lifecycle. It will help you to recognise some of the central risks to the rights and freedoms of individuals created by the use of data analytics. It is designed to be a basic introduction to some of the risks to individuals that data analytics may create or exacerbate.
Increasingly, organisations are using a specific category of advanced algorithm – referred to as artificial intelligence or AI – to complete tasks. AI can be defined as the theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks normally requiring human intelligence.
5. How data trusts can protect privacy
MIT: We can’t expect people to navigate the confusing world of data collection on their own. It’s time to join forces.
Do you simply click “Yes” whenever a company asks for your data? If so, you’re not alone. We can’t be expected to read the lengthy terms and conditions or evaluate all the risks every time we use a service. That’s like asking each of us to assess whether the water we drink is safe every time we take a sip. So we hit “Yes” and hope for the best.
Even if you’ve done your research, though, your decision could affect other people in ways you didn’t account for. When you share your DNA with services like 23andMe, that data reveals a lot about your family’s genetic make-up. What you share on social media could influence your friends’ insurance premiums. Your income statements could affect your neighbor’s ability to obtain a loan. Should sharing this information be solely up to you?
If this model of individual consent is broken, then what’s left? Should we leave it to our politicians to regulate data collection?
<p><strong>6.</strong> Wells Fargo shares jump after Fed reportedly approves bank’s overhaul plan </p>
<p><strong>7.</strong> HSBC bankers fret as popular colleagues leave and bank emphasizes wellness</p>
<p><strong>8.</strong> A Banking Breed Is Heading For Extinction</p>
6. Wells overhaul plan reported Fed approval
CNBC: The Federal Reserve reportedly signaled it will accept Wells Fargo’s plan to overhaul its governance functions, a key step for the bank’s effort to be released from a regulatory restriction.
Wells Fargo is limited to the balance-sheet size it had in late 2017, at $1.95 trillion, a rare penalty in the banking world enacted by the Fed after the bank’s multitude of scandals tied to internal controls. That asset cap has been a key reason why Wells has underperformed rivals such as JPMorgan Chase and Bank of America, which have been more able to take advantage of opportunities during the pandemic.
A spokesman for the bank declined to comment specifically to the news and referred reporters to a statement it has made in the past: “The Federal Reserve will determine when the work to fulfill the requirements of the consent order is done to their satisfaction,” the bank said. “We are focused on doing the work. We maintain strong levels of liquidity and capital, and we are committed to using our financial strength to help support the U.S. economy and our clients while operating in compliance with the asset cap.”
7. HSBC bankers fret as colleagues leave
EFC: HSBC's "pivot to Asia" is causing some trepidation at the bank's offices in New York and London, where - it's suspected - there may be more cuts following tomorrow's strategy announcement.
Last time HSBC ran a strategy day, in February 2020, it announced 35,000 job cuts and began cutting rates traders in London the very next day. The fear is that something similar could happen this time around.
In London, it's HSBC's director-level staff who are most fearful. "One tactic is to replace a number of director positions in London with a more senior position, usually managing director, often in Asia,” a senior banker told Financial News. “There is a lot of middle management in the UK.”
In the U.S., HSBC insiders are lamenting the disappearance of Jeremy Balkin, the bank's Americas head of innovation who left after six years last week. A post on LinkedIn announcing Balkin's exit has had over 1,000 reactions and over 400 comments. "Jeremy was a very affable Australian and visionary who virtually single-handedly moved HSBC into the 21st century," says one HSBC insider. Balkin is understood to have worked very closely with Charlie Nunn, HSBC's former global head of wealth and personal banking.
8. A Banking Breed Is Heading For Extinction
Bloomberg: Despite a multitude of existential threats, traditional deposit-taking banks with brick-and-mortar branches look set to survive a while longer. But there’s one particular breed of this type of lender that’s headed for extinction: the global retail bank. While some consumers will still fancy popping into their local bank, why would anyone need an international corporation to provide this service?
Since the financial crisis, pressure from regulatory demands and the squeeze on margins from declining interest rates have forced lenders to concentrate on what they excel at — be it commercial, retail or investment banking. For those big lenders still clinging on to their overseas consumer businesses, the pandemic has made retreat inevitable.
HSBC Holdings Plc is going to “stop trying to be everything to everyone,” Chief Executive Officer Noel Quinn said on Tuesday, a familiar refrain in the industry. The U.K.-Hong Kong bank will explore strategic options for its U.S. retail network and is in talks to sell its French consumer unit, redirecting capital to higher-return businesses in wealth management and Asia.
<br><p><strong>9.</strong> From Washington to Florida, here are Big Tech’s biggest threats from states.</p>
<p><strong>10.</strong> Big banks, Big Tech face off over swipe fees</p>
9. Here are Big Tech’s biggest
Protocol: The states are moving much quicker than Congress on privacy, taxes and content moderation.
When critics say that Virginia's new privacy bill is "industry-approved," they're not totally wrong, said David Marsden, the state senator who has been working for months to shepherd the law through the state legislature.
It was an Amazon lobbyist who originally presented Marsden with the text of the bill, which hews closely to the failed Washington Privacy Act, versions of which have been pushed by Microsoft across the country.
"Amazon gave us the first cut of a draft to look at that was based on other work," Marsden said.
An Amazon spokesperson called the text a "starting point." "It was an example of strong legislation and, like many other stakeholders, we consulted with the Senator as he refined his bill," the spokesperson said.
Marsden and Virginia delegate Cliff Hayes held meetings with other large tech companies, including Microsoft; financial institutions, including Capital One; and non-profit groups and small businesses, who all wanted desperately to have a hand in shaping the legislation.
10. Big banks, Big Tech face off over swipe fees
American Banker: The fees generated from consumers’ debit card spending have long been a source of acrimony between big banks and retailers. But now the banks have a new adversary: Apple, PayPal and other fresh competitors from the tech industry.
In recent months, banking heavyweights have sought to persuade the Federal Reserve Board to cap the revenue that some tech firms collect from debit cards — a move that would bring those companies under the rules that already apply to larger banks. The campaign sets up a clash between large incumbents and Silicon Valley firms that have been gradually encroaching on the industry’s turf.
“If they are going to act like a bank, they should be regulated like a bank, too,” one big-bank official said in comments that could presage a wider fight over a range of issues.
A tech industry lobbyist, who also spoke on condition of anonymity, fired back at the big banks. “They’re trying to play the victim,” the lobbyist said. “It’s clear that their strategy is to take the shine off of new entrants and new competition.”
Blockchain & Crypto-assets
<p><strong>11.</strong> China Enlists Ant-backed MYbank in Expanding Digital Yuan Trial</p>
11. China Expanding Digital Yuan Trial
Fed Reserve of St Louis: The term decentralized finance (DeFi) refers to an alternative financial infrastructure built on top of the Ethereum blockchain. DeFi uses smart contracts to create protocols that replicate existing financial services in a more open, interoperable, and transparent way.
This article highlights opportunities and potential risks of the DeFi ecosystem. I propose a multi-layered framework to analyze the implicit architecture and the various DeFi building blocks, including token standards, decentralized exchanges, decentralized debt markets, blockchain derivatives, and on-chain asset management protocols. I conclude that DeFi still is a niche market with certain risks but that it also has interesting properties in terms of efficiency, transparency, accessibility, and composability. As such, DeFi may potentially contribute to a more robust and transparent financial infrastructure.
DeFi already offers a wide variety of applications. For example, one can buy U.S. dollar (USD)-pegged assets (so-called stablecoins) on decentralized exchanges, move these assets to an equally decentralized lending platform to earn interest.
<p>12. Chinese spyware code copied from NSA</p>
12. Chinese spyware code copied from NSA
Reuters: Chinese spies used code first developed by the U.S. National Security Agency to support their hacking operations, Israeli researchers said on Monday, another indication of how malicious software developed by governments can boomerang against their creators.
Tel Aviv-based Check Point Software Technologies issued a report noting that some features in a piece of China-linked malware it dubs “Jian” were so similar they could only have been stolen from some of the National Security Agency break-in tools leaked to the internet in 2017.
Yaniv Balmas, Checkpoint’s head of research, called Jian “kind of a copycat, a Chinese replica.”
The find comes as some experts argue that American spies should devote more energy to fixing the flaws they find in software instead of developing and deploying malicious software to exploit it.
The NSA declined comment. The Chinese Embassy in Washington did not respond to requests for comment.
<br/> <p> 13. DXC positioned as a Leader in ISG Provider Lens™ Reports Analytics for Germany, the Nordics, and the U.K</p>
<p> 14. DXC Connected Bank-as-a-Service</p>
<p> 15. The Future Of Work Puts Employee Experience At The Center</p>
13. DXC positioned as a Leader in ISG Provider Reports Analytics for Germany, Nordics & U.K.
The new ISG Provider Lens™ – Analytics – Solutions and Service Partners 2020 – reports, investigating Germany, U.K., and the Nordics, will help businesses compare the relative strengths of analytics service providers. See how your data analytics strategy could benefit, and where best to invest in data science and engineering this year. DXC positioned as a Leader in ISG Provider Lens™ Reports Analytics for Germany, the Nordics, and the U.K.
Key Takeaways - Enterprises Need a Holistic Data Management Strategy
Although most enterprises already employ data analytics, the ever-increasing data deluge is growing the demand for end-to-end data analytics providers. Adopting a proven scientific and statistical approach can help you:
- Derive relevant insights and value
- Maintain one true source of data
- Tackle growth challenges
- Ensure effective governance and data management
- Choose the right cloud and migrate seamlessly
- Streamline business processes
- Deliver exceptional customer experiences
DXC’s strengths in Analytics
- Solid expertise in the data science domain across industries
- Supplier-agnostic approach
- Ability to rely on many experts in the data science field
- Established use cases and references
• “DXC Technology is an ideal partner for cloud transformation, especially for global companies thanks to its ubiquitous reach.” - 2020 ISG Provider Lens™ Leader Analytics U.K.
• “DXC has deep expertise in the data science services domain across industries. The provider holds a solid leading position in the German market.” - 2020 ISG Provider Lens™ Leader Analytics Germany
• “DXC Technology’s extensive capabilities, showcased in transforming the analytics platforms of key clients supported by an experienced team of data engineering specialists, have helped it gain prospective clients in the Nordics.” - 2020 ISG Provider Lens™ Leader Analytics Germany
The report identified four key service capabilities dominating the analytics market:
• Data Science Services
• Data Engineering Services
• Data Infrastructure and Cloud Integration Services
• Data Lifecycle Management Services
14. DXC Connected Bank-as-a-Service
DXC Connected Bank-as-a-Service is an OpEx only, off-the-shelf solution, which enables banks to respond to competitive challenges with rapidly deployable innovative new products and services. This keynote session was part of Temenos Community Forum 2020 - Temenos' virtual global banking technology event.
Competition in banking, and the wider financial services market, has never been tougher. The emergence of cloud-based ‘challenger’ banks, the arrival of new entrants targeting premium customer segments, the move away from branch-based banking to digital banking—in a short period of time, the competitive landscape has changed beyond recognition.
If ever there was a time for banks, and building societies, to respond to the market, through innovative new products and services, it’s now.
New products and services are dependent on IT systems to deliver them. Yet banks’ IT priorities are elsewhere: simply put, banks’ existing IT priorities and existing so-called ‘technical debt’ in the form of in-house systems are acting as a brake on their ability to support innovation with new products.
The ‘manage IT’ versus ‘focus on growth’ conundrum
The facts speak for themselves. Banks’ IT organisations already face considerable challenges, chiefly with maintaining existing systems and responding to regulatory pressures: keeping IT infrastructure up to date, upgrading outdated software, following security best practices, deploying process automation in order to reduce cost pressures, help desk issues—the list is lengthy.
Constrained budgets don’t help. In a low interest rate environment, net interest margin—which drives income—is falling, putting banks’ overall budgets under pressure. Yet banks find themselves unable to reduce their IT budgets accordingly as IT is seen as too critical, and the need to maintain existing systems too important.
Even in those relatively rare instances when a bank’s IT budget is increased, it’s usually for reasons other than innovation including upgrading outdated infrastructure, addressing security concerns or accommodating changes to regulation. In fact, according to one recent survey, of the top nine factors prompting IT budget increases, just one was associated with increasing revenue.
Martin Thomas, Head of Financial Services, DXC UKIIMEA delivered the keynote speech at the Temenos Community Forum discussing CBaaS.
15. The Future Of Work Puts Employee Experience At The Center
Forbes: The Covid-19 pandemic created history’s biggest remote work experiment yet. Businesses and employees swiftly adapted their daily lives and learned how to conduct their work remotely, while finding ways to remain productive.
As we start to see a glimpse of the light at the end of the tunnel, questions arise about the long-term impact. Has the pandemic changed the way we work forever?
To better understand the impact on the way we work today, and in the future, I recently connected with Michael McDaniel, vice president and general manager, Modern Workplace at DXC Technology. DXC is the largest provider of workplace services, supporting more than 1,000 workplace customers across the globe.
During our discussion, Mike shared insights regarding how the pandemic has affected the way we work today, key components of the modern workplace and what the future of work might look like.
Gary Drenik: Obviously the Covid-19 pandemic has transformed the way we work. Will we ever go back to pre-pandemic ways of working? Michael McDaniel: In short, no, we will never fully go back to pre-pandemic ways of working. In speaking with our workplace clients, the general consensus is that Covid-19 has changed the landscape forever.
Many companies want to continue the remote work trend, acknowledging that it gives them access to better talent and allows people to be more productive with the extra time saved from commuting and travel.
Most employees want to work remotely too. A new Prosper Insights & Analytics survey found that 60% of adults want to continue working from home after the pandemic is over. Further, 69% indicated the lack of a commute as a key reason they prefer it.
With that said, I don’t expect the physical office to become a thing of the past entirely. Rather, it is evolving from a place where we sit and do work to a space for collaboration, where we can bring people together to solve a specific problem and brainstorm new ideas.
At DXC, the majority of our people will be working remotely moving forward as part of the “new DXC.”
<p><strong>16.</strong> Revolut rolls out QR code-based payments for business customers</p>
<p><strong>17.</strong> The European fintechs to watch in 2021</p>
<p><strong>18.</strong> From fintechs to banking as a service: global trends banks cannot ignore</p>
16. Revolut rolls out QR code-based payments
Finextra: Revolut has rolled out touch-free QR code-based payments for business customers across Europe.
The services is targeted at business owners - from market stall traders to cafe proprietors - who can access QR codes on their phones using just the Revolut Business app, without needing to purchase any additional devices.
Users need to apply for a Revolut merchant account to access the feature, which generates a QR code which the customer can scan with the camera on their phone. The customer will then receive a prompt asking them to pay with Apple Pay, Visa or Mastercard and they can complete the payment from their own iOS or Android device.
Paulo Guichard, product owner for acquiring at Revolut says: “The popularity of QR codes has increased as this payment method is quick, easy and allows people to make socially distanced payments which are increasingly important during the global pandemic. We’ve removed the need for additional devices or hardware, as all business owners have to do is use their Revolut Business app and show customers a QR code to accept payments straight away through this efficient and touch free method.”
17. The Euro fintechs to watch in 2021
Sifted: 2021's shaping up to be another record year for European fintech. Which are the startups scaleups to watch? Financial technology is, by a long way, the hottest startup sector in Europe in terms of money raised. In 2020 €5.3bn was invested, and 2021 is shaping up to be another record year — €2bn has already been raised.
In 2020, digital payments and neobanks experienced extreme highs (from the Covid-19 market shock to the collapse of Wirecard in the summer) and extreme highs (Klarna raising $650m, Europe's largest VC round of 2020).
Who will come out on top in 2021? And who will be part of the highly anticipated second wave of neobanks?
Our team of experts at Sifted have chosen a list of over 150 fintechs we think you should keep an eye on, with our own 'Sifted takes.'
Klarna: Payment solutions for online stores and 'Buy Now Pay Later' provider. Don't be fooled by Klarna's candy-pink branding, buzzy slogans and glitzy advertising. The fintech recently secured a $10.65bn valuation and is eyeing a public listing in the next couple of years.
18. Global trends banks cannot ignore
LSE: In 2009, in the aftermath of the financial crisis, the late Paul Volcker, former chairman of the U.S. Federal Reserve, quipped that “the only useful innovation in banking for the past 20 years” had been the ATM. He went on to call for banks to think more boldly.
If not banks themselves, soon bold fintech and techfin thinkers appeared, unleashing one of the greatest transformations since… well, the ATM! The decentralisation and quasi-democratisation of financial services, largely at the hands of legions of grassroots players, have forever changed the way money is exchanged. Digital technologies made all of this possible, of course, in the same way as they have disrupted many other industries. But there is more to this story.
This transformation has not just increased efficiency or improved customer experience. It has rewritten the rules of value creation in banking, by relentlessly innovating business models. The transformative tension on banks has just started but some clear business models trends are already shaping the global fintech scene. Let’s review them and see how incumbent banks can respond.
<br/><strong>19.</strong> Use of big data sources and applications at central banks<br/>
<strong>20. </strong>Transforming data collection – an update on progress and plans for 2021<br/>
19. Use of big data sources at central banks
BIS: Big data sources are developing fast, and applications for making use of this new information are flourishing in parallel. This primarily reflects the impact of digitisation, with the development of the “internet of things” as well as a greater ability to digitally process “traditional” information, such as text.
It is also a consequence of the large databases that have been created as an “organic” by-product of the complex operations taking place in our modern societies. Additionally, vast amounts of data have emerged in the administrative, commercial and financial areas, an evolution spurred by the important data collection strategies undertaken after the Great Financial Crisis (GFC) of 2007–09 in order to address the information challenges posed by the development of finance.
Central banks are no exception to this general picture. They have shown an increasing interest in using big data in recent years, as already documented extensively by the Irving Fisher Committee on Central Bank Statistics (IFC).
20. FCA: Transforming data collection
FCA Dear CEO Letter: This letter provides an update on the work we have done to transform the way that we collect data, and reaffirms our commitment to work in partnership with you to tackle the challenges we collectively face.
Strong and secure data foundations are necessary for all successful financial services firms. For regulators, data collections from firms are a critical ingredient of our data foundations. Without high-quality collections, our ability to identify risks and harms, design good policy, and take action in a timely and targeted fashion is severely affected.
Data collection represents a challenge for regulated and regulator. We recognise that reporting is one of the most demanding parts of regulation. At the same time, the quality of data we have received has not always been to the standards we expect, and our data needs have evolved as technology and business models have changed.
To address these issues, the Bank and the FCA have been working on projects looking at the future of data collection. These collaborative projects have explored a vision for data collections, in which high-quality, data is supplied and used by leaner, clearer and less burdensome processes than we see today.
<p> 21. I helped build ByteDance's vast censorship machine</p>
21. I helped build ByteDance's censorship
Protocol: This is the story of Li An, a pseudonymous former employee at ByteDance, as told to Protocol's Shen Lu.
It was the night Dr. Li Wenliang struggled for his last breath in the emergency room of Wuhan Central Hospital. I, like many Chinese web users, had stayed awake to refresh my Weibo feed constantly for updates on his condition. Dr. Li was an ophthalmologist who sounded the alarm early in the COVID-19 outbreak. He soon faced government intimidation and then contracted the virus. When he passed away in the early hours of Friday, Feb. 7, 2020, I was among many Chinese netizens who expressed grief and outrage at the events on Weibo, only to have my account deleted.
I felt guilt more than anger. At the time, I was a tech worker at ByteDance, where I helped develop tools and platforms for content moderation. In other words, I had helped build the system that censored accounts like mine. I was helping to bury myself in China's ever-expanding cyber grave.
I hadn't received explicit directives about Li Wenliang, but Weibo was certainly not the only Chinese tech company relentlessly deleting posts and accounts that night.