The Brief

Sony's logo is seen outside the company's headquarters in Tokyo.
Itsuo Inouye—AP

Sony: 'We Have Not Caved'

Sony Pictures Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton defended his company’s decision to cancel the theatrical release of The Interview, even as the company refused to rule out releasing the movie in other ways

The tree is seen during the 81st Annual Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony in New York

Get Ready for a Wet Christmas

A major storm is set to hit the East Coast and Midwest and build to a climax on Christmas Eve, with many areas bracing for heavy rain

Uber Shows Taxis Never Same As Smartphones Roil U.S. Industry

Uber Wants Surge Pricing Patent

The ride-sharing service wants to patent a pricing technology that has come under fire from critics who accuse it of price gouging.

President Barack Obama speaks during his speech to members of the media during his last news conference of the year in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House on Dec. 19, 2014 in Washington.

Obama Looks to '4th Quarter' of His Presidency

At the end of a grim year that saw his approval ratings sink, his party pummeled and his legislative agenda stymied, President Barack Obama made an impassioned argument that the nation has emerged stronger than ever from economic upheaval and foreign crises

The Instagram logo is displayed on a smartphone on Dec. 20, 2012 in Paris, France.

Instagram Could Be Worth $35 Billion

The photo-sharing service owned by Facebook could be worth a whopping $35 billion, according to a new estimate. The sky-high valuation makes Facebook’s $1-billion acquisition of Instagram in 2012 look like a slam-dunk

Australia Children Killed

Australian Woman Arrested in Deaths of 8 Children

A woman has been arrested for murder in the killings of 8 children in an Australian home. Police haven't said how the children died, but they're examining several knives in the home that may have been the weapon used

Dudu Kromah's husband died recently from ebola. She is looking after ten children, many of them orphans including a 3-month-old baby.

Ebola-Stricken Families to Receive Cash Payments

Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone will start offering cash payments for families hit by Ebola in 2015, as well as survivors having trouble re-acclimating to society out of stigma for the disease. Plans for the payment process are still being refined

T-Mobile

T-Mobile to Pay $90 Million Over Unwanted Charges

T-Mobile has agreed to pay at least $90 million in customer refunds and fines to settle claims that its customers were the victims of cramming, a once-common tactic in the telecom industry through which third parties hide unwanted charges

Guantanamo Bay Cuba

U.S.-Cuba Thaw Won't Close Guantanamo Bay

The reopening of diplomatic relations between the United States and Cuba doesn't mean the U.S. Navy’s historic base—and new terror prison—is likely to go anywhere anytime soon, TIME's Mark Thompson writes

A Google logo is seen at the garage where the company was founded on Google's 15th anniversary in Menlo Park, California

Google Eyes Android-Powered Cars

Google is planning to build the next version of its Android operating system, dubbed Android M, directly into automobiles. The technology would allow drivers to access the Internet and use Android apps without the synching their car with a smartphone

Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps walks into a courthouse in Baltimore, Md. for a trial on drunken driving and other charges on Dec. 19, 2014.

Michael Phelps Pleads Guilty to DUI, Avoids Jail Time

Olympic gold medalist Michael Phelps pleaded guilty in a Baltimore court to his second DUI in a decade. Phelps was given a one-year suspended prison sentence and 18 months of supervised probation, and will not need to serve jail time

U.S. Teens Are Deserting Facebook Faster Than Ever

A new report has found that Americans aged 13 to 17 who use social media are leaving Facebook faster than ever, with the percentage of those with accounts dropping six points from 94% last year to 88% in 2014. From 2012 to 2013, it only dropped one point