Daily Archives: December 19, 2016

This 11-Year-Old Is New York’s ‘Emotional Adviser’

As winter arrives and the blues set in, New Yorkers in one Brooklyn neighborhood have at least one place they can go to for a pick-me-up. Every Sunday for the past few weeks, 11-year-old Ciro Ortiz posts up in and around the Bedford L subway station and doles out sage advice to those seeking answers to their problems — only for $2 a session, practically a steal by New York City standards.

According to a recent New York Post profile of Ciro, the middle schooler drew inspiration from his own experiences being bullied at school. His mother, Jasmine Aequitas, told the paper:

Ciro is really sensitive and he’s had a hard time. The first day he was out there [on the subway platform, giving counseling], he was very nervous and unsure of himself. … A few Sundays later, he’s come back saying, ‘I’ve met so many wonderful people. I’m gonna end up having so many friends.’

Source: This 11-Year-Old Is New York’s ‘Emotional Adviser’

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Photographers And Filmmakers Call For Encryption To Be Built Into Cameras As Standard

Encryption has become one of the key issues in the digital world today, as the many posts here on Techdirt attest. And not just in the tech world, but far beyond, too, as governments grapple with the spread of devices and information that cannot easily be accessed just because they demand it. Techdirt readers probably take crypto for granted, as an increasing proportion of Web connections use HTTPS, mobile phones generally offer encryption options, and hugely-popular mainstream programs like WhatsApp deploy end-to-end encryption. But a recently-published open letter points out that there is one domain where this kind of protectively-scrambled data is almost unknown: photography. The letter, signed by over 150 filmmakers and photojournalists, calls on the camera manufacturers Canon, Fuji, Nikon, Olympus and Sony to build encryption features into their still photo and video camera products as a matter of course. Here’s why the signatories feel it’s necessary:

Source: Photographers And Filmmakers Call For Encryption To Be Built Into Cameras As Standard | Techdirt

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Who will check Facebook’s ‘fact checkers?’


In response to recent concerns about “fake news” and opinion-swaying hoaxes, Facebook has unveiled new measures to address the issue. But unless done right, these steps may create more problems than they solve — and boost claims that the “fake news crisis” is an attempt to impose political controls on the media.

One Facebook measure gives power to consumers themselves: Anyone will be able to report a hoax by clicking the upper right hand corner of a post.

This may accomplish some good, but the potential for abuse is immediately obvious. People can flood the system with fake reports of fake news, either to punish websites and news organizations they dislike or to subvert the fake-news-flagging process itself.

More than a few people on the right and the “anti-establishment” left will get a huge kick out of slapping the “fake news” label on The New York Times, The Washington Post or CNN.

However, Facebook’s main mechanism for “fake news” oversight will be a program involving third-party fact-checkers.

Source: Who will check Facebook’s ‘fact checkers?’ | TheHill

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U.S. to disclose estimate of number of Americans under surveillance

The U.S. intelligence community will soon disclose an estimate of the number of Americans whose electronic communications have been caught in the crosshairs of online surveillance programs intended for foreigners, U.S. lawmakers said in a letter seen by Reuters on Friday.The estimate, requested by members of the U.S. House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, is expected to be made public as early as next month, the letter said.Its disclosure would come as Congress is expected to begin debate in the coming months over whether to reauthorize or reform the so-called surveillance authority, known as Section 702, a provision that was added to the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act in 2008.”The timely production of this information is incredibly important to informed debate on Section 702 in the next Congress— and, without it, even those of us inclined to support reauthorization would have reason for concern,” said the letter signed by 11 lawmakers, all members of the House Judiciary Committee.The letter was sent on Friday to National Intelligence Director James Clapper. It said his office and National Security Agency (NSA) officials had already briefed congressional staff about how the intelligence community intends to comply with the disclosure request.

Source: U.S. to disclose estimate of number of Americans under surveillance | Reuters

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Assange: Election Showed Liberal Press Is Not Very Important

‘We see that, and they feel it.’

Source: Assange: Election Showed Liberal Press Is Not Very Important | The Daily Caller

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Feminist Prof: Cats Are The Solution to ‘Toxic Masculinity’

Cats are the solution to toxic masculinity, claims one Australian feminist professor.Dr. Heather Fraser, who teachers at Flinders University, has been researching “feline masculinities,” which basically means she’s spent a ton of time looking at men and their cats on Instagram.(You heard that right: That’s a job someone has. Now look at your life, look at your choices.)Get our exclusive newsletter—the best of Heat Street every dayIn the past, “aspects of orthodox masculinity” stopped men from being too expressive about any affinities for cats, Fraser told the Australian Broadcasting Corporation. That same orthodox masculinity, she said, has been correlated with misogyny and violence.But now, a growing number of men are posting photos of themselves snuggling with beloved kittens, and “that’s a beautiful thing,” Fraser said.“I like to see men defying the narrow straight-jackets of the ‘he-men’ of the past. In amongst all this, it’s also fun, it’s good. And it allows boys that are growing up to have better relationships with cats and, by extension, other kinds of creatures,” she told the Australian national news service.

Source: Feminist Prof: Cats Are The Solution to ‘Toxic Masculinity’ | Heat Street

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How to Enable Two-Factor Authentication on Twitter

Twitter calls its two-factor authentication system “Login Verification,” but the idea is exactly the same: signing in from a new browser will require something you have (like your phone) as well as something you know (your password), giving your account an added layer of protection.As one of the only social media platforms that does not require your real name, Twitter brings up some trade-offs when it comes to enabling 2FA.First, Twitter requires your phone number to set up 2FA. If you use Twitter under a pseudonym and want to maintain your anonymity, handing over your real phone number—or, at least, a phone number at which you can reliably, regularly receive texts—may not be the right security move for you. Further, if you use several Twitter accounts—perhaps a professional account with your real name, a personal account under a pseudonym, or a group account for a social movement—then associating each account with the same phone number may make it possible for Twitter or law enforcement to link identities and accounts that you intended to keep separate.Second, Twitter is limited to using SMS for 2FA, which is vulnerable to interception by your telecom and others. This makes SMS generally less secure than other existing 2FA methods, like authenticator apps or hardware security keys.If enabling 2FA by SMS on Twitter is right for you, follow the steps below to set it up. Click on your profile picture in the upper right-hand corner to navigate to “Settings.” Select “Security and privacy” on the left. If you have not yet given Twitter your phone number, select “add a phone.” If you have, skip to step 6. Enter your phone number and click “Continue.” Shortly after you click, you should receive a text with your code. Enter it and click “Activate phone.” This will land you on the mobile settings page. To get back to setting up 2FA, click on “Security and privacy” on the left. Check “Verify login requests” next to “Login verification.” The first prompt briefly describes how 2FA works on Twitter. Click “Start.” Before continuing, you may be prompted to enter your Twitter password. Go ahead and click “Verify.” Make sure the phone number you see is correct and can receive texts, and click “Send code.” Shortly after you click, you should receive a text with your code. Enter it and click “Submit.” Finally, click “Get backup code” to get a printable backup code. Write this down or print it and keep it someplace safe. Click “Done.”Back at your security settings page, you can generate app passwords to log into other Twitter apps, like the Twitter for Mac app. App passwords are passwords for devices and applications that do not support logging in with a one-time verification code. (Note that you will not need an app password for Twitter for iOS, Twitter for Android, or mobile.twitter.com.)If and when you use your hardcopy backup code, you can also come back to your security settings page to generate another.Stay tuned for more posts on two-factor authentication during the 12 Days of 2FA.SecurityPrivacy

Source: How to Enable Two-Factor Authentication on Twitter | Electronic Frontier Foundation

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Surviving Obamacare’s Crippling Costs: “Become Your Own Primary Healthcare Provider”

Are you prepared to survive… the age of socialized medicine? Health care coverage shouldn’t be life threatening, but…Unfortunately, the skyrocketing cost of health care coverage under Obamacare is forcing millions of middle class families to do without coverage, while being forced to pay the tax penalty. To do anything else is simply unaffordable.This is a nightmare, and incredibly unfair to American families – and yet, it is now the state of the nation. This is the crushing status quo.Prepare for the dark times ahead – and empower yourself to keep you and yours healthy and thriving. This is something your doctor, your E.R. and your government can’t and won’t do for you.As time goes on, health care will continue to deteriorate, yet become increasingly more expensive, less available, and with more red tape than ever. This is just not a tenable situation.If inadequate hospital and doctor visits can cost thousands, and perhaps fail to even address the problem, hard hit and struggling Americans are going to have to turn towards each other in order to maintain good health.According to the Patriot Nurse, in this difficult situation:

Source: Surviving Obamacare’s Crippling Costs: “Become Your Own Primary Healthcare Provider”

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Classic Christmas Movies Declare Taxation Is Theft

“And it came to pass that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. And all went to be taxed, everyone to his own city, for to disobey the Roman emperor meant certain death.”The message in the opening lines of The Little Drummer Boy (1968) is as rich and pleasing to the ear as Greer Garson’s euphonious narration.That there was “no room at the inn” was not a natural occurrence. It was caused by the government, like virtually all human misery.First, that Bethlehem was so crowded and that there was “no room at the inn” for Joseph and Mary was not at all a natural occurrence. It was caused by the government, like virtually all human misery. Second, that all taxation occurs under the threat of violence, for to refuse to pay would result in “certain death.”This is all within the first 30 seconds of the film. A libertarian couldn’t ask for a better start.Taxation is repeatedly denounced throughout the story. Garson continues by noting that “there were good people who could ill afford the cruel tax.” Even the film’s chief villain, Ben Haramad (voice by José Ferrer), who kidnaps Aaron in order to compel him to perform in his traveling show, addresses his audience as “fellow taxpayers,” indicating that as bad as he might be, he is one with his audience in suffering under a much more cruel and malicious oppressor.

Source: Classic Christmas Movies Declare Taxation Is Theft | Foundation for Economic Education

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12 Stories Missed as the CIA Convinced You Russia Hacked the Election

(TFC) The country has its sights firmly placed on the spectacle occurring over the hack/leak of documents that may or may not have influenced the election. It’s irrelevant. The people of the United States cannot grant the CIA (or any intelligence agency) the power to cast doubt on the results of elections via unconfirmed, unsourced, and politically biased findings. At the end of the day, the precedent set by allowing a secret agency to veto election results is the death of democracy.So what did you miss while this was occupying the national narrative? Lots. Troops are deploying to Afghanistan, the Boko Haram is back in the headlines, a new pipeline fight, and much more.Another 2300 US troops are headed to Afghanistan this winter to attempt to stop massive territorial gains by the Taliban. Like most military buildups, the US government is claiming the troops will “advise and assist”.While most of the attention is focused on Aleppo, the Kurds in Iraq have been fighting to liberate the city of Raqqa.The fight against the Boko Haram didn’t end with the #BringBackOurGirls campaign. According to sources in Nigeria, more than 600 people (including 450 children) were recently freed during a rescue operation.Construction of a pipeline is disrupting the lands of native tribes. This isn’t happening in North Dakota, it’s happening in Mexico.The Pentagon covered up $125 billion dollars worth of waste and abuse.Women in China have been required to submit nude photographs as collateral to obtain loans. Some have been released when the women failed to make payments.The United States halted arms sales to Saudi Arabia. The move is seen by many as a public relations effort because the US increased arms sales to other Gulf States.Dissident leaders in Iran are begging for a trial, after being confined for six years without one.2.2 million children in Yemen are “acutely malnourished.” This is largely due to the war being waged by the Saudis with US weapons.The boss of the Central Intelligence Agency has attempted to dissuade incoming President Trump from re-instituting torture.The UN General Assembly has voted to recognize the dangers posed by depleted uranium ammunition. The United States has admitted to using depleted uranium rounds in Syria.Shareholders approved the merger of Monsanto and Bayer.A completely fake US Embassy in Ghana has been issuing false travel documents for more than a decade.

Source: 12 Stories Missed as the CIA Convinced You Russia Hacked the Election

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Infamous Lion Killer Falls 100 Feet To His Death During Hunt

An Italian veterinarian and hunter who found infamy online last year due to photos of him posing with a lion he’d killed recently slipped on ice and fell 100 feet to his death while on a hunt.Luciano Ponzetto, 55, was hunting birds in the hills near Turin before he slipped and fell into a ravine, killing him instantly.“We were called by the mountain rescue services who had been alerted to the incident by someone who was out with him,” an Italian police spokesperson told The Sun, confirming his death.

Source: Infamous Lion Killer Falls 100 Feet To His Death During Hunt – All That Is Interesting

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