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Category Archives: Internet

Verizon and AT&T will stop selling your phone’s location to data brokers

Ars Technica: “Verizon and AT&T have promised to stop selling their mobile customers’ location information to third-party data brokers following a security problem that leaked the real-time location of US cell phone users. Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) recently urged all four major carriers to stop the practice, and today he published responses he received from Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile USA, and Sprint. Wyden’s statement praised Verizon for “taking quick action to protect its customers’ privacy and security,” but he criticized the other carriers for not making the same promise. “After my investigation and follow-up reports revealed that middlemen are selling Americans’ location to the highest bidder without their consent or making it available on insecure Web portals, Verizon did the responsible thing and promptly announced it was cutting these companies off,” Wyden said. “In contrast, AT&T, T-Mobile, and Sprint seem content to continuing to sell their customers’ private information to these shady middle men, Americans’ privacy be damned.” [Question – how can Verizon be considered praiseworthy when they were selling user data and have just “agreed” to cease doing so – where is the accountability and transparency as it pertains to all the carriers as it pertain to the privacy of customers?]

Facebook’s Screening for Political Ads Nabs News Sites Instead of Politicians

ProPublica – The social network is letting some political ads slip through without the required verification, while blocking promotional posts by news organizations, which are pushing back. “..Facebook’s new screening policies to deter manipulation of political ads are creating their own problems. The company’s human reviewers and software algorithms are catching paid posts from legitimate… Continue Reading

Best web browsers 2018: Chrome, Edge, Firefox, and Opera go head-to-head

PCWorld takes a look at the performance and features of the big four internet browsers to see which one will serve you best. “The web browser is by far the most important piece of software on your PC—at least for most users. Unless you’re at a workstation crunching numbers or editing the next Star Wars… Continue Reading

A brief history of the internet

Science Node: “February 7, 1958 was the day Secretary of Defense Neil McElroy signed Department of Defense Directive 5105.15. His signature launched the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA), now known as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA). The creation of the agency is an important moment in science history because it led to the… Continue Reading

When tragedy strikes, what do journalists owe sources

Max Robinson – Columbia Journalism Review: ” Three weeks ago a devastating flood swept through sleepy Ellicott City, Maryland, shaking up the lives of residents and business owners and pouring them out for the world to see. Trapped in the flood, my instinctive response—as a part-time journalist and full-time millennial scum—was to document the scene.… Continue Reading

Commentary – Schools must equip students to navigate alt-right websites that push fake news

The Conversation – Schools must equip students to navigate alt-right websites that push fake new: “More than 60 percent of America’s middle and high school students rely on alt-right internet sites as credible sources for their research papers. The students are using alt-right sites to write papers on topics that range from free speech and the… Continue Reading

The 100 Greatest YouTube Videos of All Time, Ranked

Warning – NSFW! Via Thrillist – “Like most unicorns, YouTube isn’t perfect. Its comment sections are famously noxious, its algorithms proliferate conspiracy theorists, its filters fail to protect kids’ feeds, and its ad-revenue-sharing model props up problematic vloggers. But it also has hydraulic press videos. And lo-fi hip-hop beats to study/relax to. And a dude… Continue Reading

Harvester of Facebook Data Wants Tighter Controls Over Privacy

Via WSJ [paywall] – Aleksandr Kogan, at a Senate hearing, calls for stronger check on obtaining users’ content – “An academic who was central to the misuse of Facebook Inc. data sought to turn the tables on internet companies by saying the government should step in to help prevent data-privacy scandals in the future. At a… Continue Reading

Distinguishing Between Factual and Opinion Statements in the News

“The politically aware, digitally savvy and those more trusting of the news media fare better; Republicans and Democrats both influenced by political appeal of statements In today’s fast-paced and complex information environment, news consumers must make rapid-fire judgments about how to internalize news-related statements – statements that often come in snippets and through pathways that… Continue Reading

After years of growth, the use of social media for news is falling across the world

NiemanLab: “…People are becoming disenchanted with Facebook for news. The “Trump bump” appears to be sustaining itself. And younger people are more likely to donate money to a news organization than older people. These are some of the findings from a big new report out Thursday from Oxford’s Reuters Institute for the Study of Journalism.… Continue Reading

Mozilla Asked People How They Feel About Facebook. Here’s What They Said

Medium: “47,000 people responded to our survey asking how they feel about Facebook. The data is interesting and open for your exploration. Facebook has been in the news a lot lately. It started with the announcement that over 87 million Facebook users had their personal information shared with the private firm Cambridge Analytica without their… Continue Reading

Coming in from the Cold: A Safe Harbor from the CFAA and DMCA §1201

“The Assembly program is pleased to announce a new publication, titled Coming in from the Cold: A Safe Harbor from the CFAA and DMCA §1201, written by Harvard Law School student Daniel Etcovitch and 2017 Assembly cohort member Thyla van der Merwe. The paper proposes a statutory safe harbor from the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act… Continue Reading