Daily Archives: February 11, 2018

Pornhub Says Digitally Generated ‘Deepfakes’ Are Non-Consensual and It Will Remove Them

PRIVACY AND SECURITYPornhub Says Digitally Generated ‘Deepfakes’ Are Non-Consensual and It Will Remove ThemTom McKayTuesday 9:30pmFiled to: DEEPFAKES72.4K1007Photo: APAfter Reddit and image-hosting platform Gfycat began removing porn videos digitally altered via machine-learning techniques to swap performers’ faces with those of someone else’s—a genre known as deepfakes—porn site Pornhub is following their lead.Per Motherboard, Pornhub said that it considers generating deepfakes of other people to be clearly non-consensual.

It compared deepfakes to revenge porn and added that it will remove such content from the site:“We do not tolerate any nonconsensual content on the site and we remove all said content as soon as we are made aware of it,” a spokesperson told me in an email. “Nonconsensual content directly violates our TOS [terms of service] and consists of content such as revenge porn, deepfakes or anything published without a person’s consent or permission.”

Pornhub previously told Mashable that it has removed deepfakes that are flagged by users.As Motherboard noted and a quick search by Gizmodo confirmed, numerous such videos remained on the site and were easily accessible using the obvious search terms “deepfake” or “deepfakes.” Apparently, Pornhub might be waiting for users to flag the content for them—perhaps a dubious proposition given the likelihood people searching for the content aren’t particularly interested in having it removed.

Source: Pornhub Says Digitally Generated ‘Deepfakes’ Are Non-Consensual and It Will Remove Them

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Google reportedly exploring game streaming powered by Chromecast – The Verge

Google is looking into developing a game streaming service that would allow it to stream software to a compatible Chromecast device or yet-to-be-released home console, according to a report today from The Information. The new service is codenamed “Yeti,” and it would be comparable to game streaming services like Sony’s PlayStation Now and Nvidia’s GeForce Now. That means users would not download software to a hard drive, but stream the game from a Google server instead. So this planned service is not to be confused with existing game subscription offerings like Microsoft’s Xbox Game Pass that let users download unlimited games from a pre-selected pool of titles for a monthly fee.

It’s unclear whether Google would focus solely on streaming Android games to a consumer’s television, as playing Android games on a big screen is already relatively easy to do with existing casting and mirroring technology. Google’s Chromecast can also natively play some mobile-quality party games directly from the device, as can Amazon’s Fire TV and the Apple TV. (Both of those platforms have more robust libraries of TV-centric games than Google.) So instead of an Android-focused service, “Yeti” could be a play for a more serious chunk of the gaming audience looking for a low-cost, low-effort streaming solution for playing games on a TV, but that might require courting developers to make specific titles for the platform.

Source: Google reportedly exploring game streaming powered by Chromecast – The Verge

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Opera 51 Released: It’s 38% Faster Than Firefox Quantum 58

Its developers claim that the new version, based Chromium 64, is around 38% faster (Speedometer 2.0 benchmark) than Firefox 58 when tested on an HP Spectre running Windows 10. The reason behind the quickness is Opera 51’s Windows version is compiled with Clang.

Source: Opera 51 Released: It’s 38% Faster Than Firefox Quantum 58

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Experimental Drug Promises to Kill the Flu Virus in a Day 

As Americans suffer through the worst influenza outbreak in almost a decade, a Japanese drugmaker says it has developed a pill that can kill the virus within a day. But even if the experimental drug lives up to the claim, it likely won’t be available in the U.S. until next year at the earliest.A late-stage trial on Japanese and American flu patients found that for the people who took the Shionogi 4507 -3.04% & Co. compound, the median time taken to wipe out the virus was 24 hours. That is much quicker than any other flu drug on the market, including Roche AG’s RHHBY -0.07% Tamiflu, which the trial showed took three times longer to achieve the same result. Quickly killing the virus could reduce its contagious effects, Shionogi said.Also, Shionogi’s experimental drug requires only a single dose, while patients need to take two doses of Tamiflu a day, for five days.

Source: Experimental Drug Promises to Kill the Flu Virus in a Day – WSJ

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Missouri woman finds neighbor’s dog riding pony

BOLIVAR, Mo. (AP) – A dog riding a one-eyed pony into the night is surely a spectacle that needs video proof. A Missouri woman made sure to get exactly that.

Source: Missouri woman finds neighbor’s dog riding pony

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100 people die in Germany each year due to risky sex practices

Across the Bundesrepublik, 80-100 people accidentally die each year due to risky masturbation practices where a lack of oxygen in the search for sexual satisfaction is the most common reason for death.Just before the turn of the new year, a man in Hesse was found dead in his cellar. According to investigations carried out by the Hanau public prosecutor’s office, the man had suffocated.Authorities reported that he was found with chains tied all around his body, including his neck, and that there were no indications of external violence; the assumption is that he suffered from an autoerotic death. Bild newspaper had reported that pornographic images were also present when his body was discovered.The search for the ultimate orgasm through depriving oneself of oxygen is the most common reason for autoerotic deaths, according to forensic examiner Harald Voß.Voß estimates there are one or two cases of accidental deaths annually that occur during sexual activity in which a device or prop was used to enhance one’s stimulation for every one million inhabitants in Germany. Around 80-100 people thus die annually in an autoerotic way.

Source: 100 people die in Germany each year due to risky sex practices – The Local

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Memo to Dan Rather: Shut Up About Memos

Old liberal media liars never fade away. They just rage, rage against the dying of their dinosaur industry’s light.I’m looking at you, Dan Rather.After years of trashing alternative media, which exposed the veteran CBS News reporter’s monumental Memogate fraud in 2004, Rather has joined the ranks of pajama-clad online broadcasters. The 86-year-old grandfather of fake news now uses Facebook, YouTube and Twitter to stoke the left’s anti-Trump resistance — all while clinging bitterly to the vestiges of his defunct “legendary” newsman persona.Consider Gunga Dan’s comments on the House Intelligence Committee’s release of the four-page Nunes memo alleging domestic surveillance abuses by politicized FBI brass working with Democratic operatives.”Most respectable analysts,” Rather asserted, “have determined that the contents of the memo are thin.”

Who determined that these unnamed analysts are “respectable”? Dan Rather. Why are they “respectable”? Because they confirm Dan Rather’s opinions. Why are Dan Rather’s opinions more valid than others? Because he’s Dan Rather, the veteran teleprompter reader America must trust.”With the release of the memo,” Rather railed, “the goal of the White House and its willing enablers is to make what is really the truth into a forgettable sidebar.”He lambasted “cherry-picking” and taking things “out of context.” And, Rather fretted, “what will be the endgame if a big segment of the public confuses what they hope to be true with what turns out to be true?”

Source: Memo to Dan Rather: Shut Up About Memos

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Brazil’s Largest Newspaper Just Ditched Facebook Due to New Algorithm

Accusing Facebook of discriminating against “quality” content and accelerating the spread of “fake news” with its newly-unveiled algorithm, Brazil’s largest newspaper Folha de S. Paulo—which boasts a print and online subscriber base of 285,000 people—has announced that it will no longer publish its articles on the social media platform.“In effectively banning professional journalism from its pages in favor of personal content and opening space for ‘fake news’ to proliferate, Facebook became inhospitable terrain for those who want to offer quality content like ours,” Sérgio Dávila, Folha’s executive editor, said in a statement.In an article published on Thursday, Folha—which has over 5.7 million followers on Facebook—noted that over the past several months it had begun to detect a sharp decline in interactions not just with its own Facebook posts, but with those of other major Brazilian newspapers as well.

Source: Brazil’s Largest Newspaper Just Ditched Facebook Due to New Algorithm

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Palin Vindicated: GOP Sends IPAB to the Death Panel

Despite what we keep reading in the “news” media about the failure of the GOP to repeal Obamacare, congressional Republicans and President Trump are steadily dismembering the justly reviled healthcare law, limb by pernicious limb. The latest appendage to be lopped off was among its most dangerous — the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB). IPAB was designed by the law’s authors as a rationing board composed of unelected bureaucrats vested with the power to “recommend” reductions in Medicare payments to doctors and hospitals. This would have inevitably reduced access to care for the elderly. That dangerous Obamacare provision was repealed this morning.What’s so dangerous about a board that recommends cost-cutting measures for an expensive program like Medicare? Well, for starters, it would have literally taken an act of Congress to reject its recommendations. In theory, IPAB would have only proposed changes to Medicare payment rates. In practice, however, the board’s recommendations would have taken effect automatically unless Congress passed alternative legislation that “saved” the same amount of money designated appropriate by IPAB and the President signed it into law. Moreover, both houses of Congress as well as the White House would have had to take these actions with uncharacteristic alacrity.

Source: Palin Vindicated: GOP Sends IPAB to the Death Panel | The American Spectator

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Chrome will mark HTTP pages as “not secure” 

Starting with Chrome 68, which is scheduled to be released in July 2018, Google will explicitly mark all HTTP sites as “not secure”:According to Google’s numbers, 68% of Chrome traffic on both Android and Windows is now encrypted, as is 78% of Chrome traffic on both Chrome OS and Mac. In July, those numbers are going to be even higher.“Developers have been transitioning their sites to HTTPS and making the web safer for everyone,” Chrome security product manager Emily Schechter pointed out. “81 of the top 100 sites on the web use HTTPS by default.”

Source: Chrome will mark HTTP pages as “not secure” – Help Net Security

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Woman found holding her eyeball outside S Carolina church

Authorities say a woman was found holding her eyeball outside a South Carolina church.Anderson County Sheriff Chad McBride tells news outlets that it took two or three deputies and two emergency medical workers to subdue the woman to start rendering aid.A retired minister who helped the woman, Rev. Terry Mitchell, says it appeared she had intentionally hurt herself on nearby railroad tracks. He said the woman looked young, and struggled against people who were trying to help her.The sheriff’s office says deputies responded to assist emergency medical workers, and no crime was committed.The woman was airlifted to a hospital.South Main Chapel and Mercy Center worker Elizabeth Hiott says the church held a debriefing to counsel those who had seen what happened.

Source: Woman found holding her eyeball outside S Carolina church

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Hamlet Writ Large: 100 Huge Fiberglass Skulls Haunt Melbourne Museum | Urbanist

A curious curatorial decision marked the inaugural National Gallery of Victoria Triennel, featuring 100 artists from 32 countries, including an installation of 100 massive skulls (note: not those of the participating artists).Amidst other artists, designers, technologists, animators and architects, Australian sculptor Ron Mueck’s largest ever work to date still stands out, providing a chilling ambient atmosphere for more conventional museum pieces.Titled Mass, it represents “a somber study of mortality, and an extension of [the artist’s] hyperrealistic sculptural practice, [drawing] from the biological structure of the skull, regarded by him as extraordinary facets of humanity.”Made of fiberglass and resin, the skulls are around three feet (or: one meter) tall, but many are piled up on top of one another, reaching toward gallery ceilings above.

Source: Hamlet Writ Large: 100 Huge Fiberglass Skulls Haunt Melbourne Museum | Urbanist

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Two Bills Introduced to Ban US Government from Using Chinese Equipment

In the span of a month, US legislators have introduced two separate bills that aim to ban US government agencies from buying, using, or contracting Chinese-made telecommunications equipment or services.Congressman Mike Conaway (R-TX) introduced the first such bill on January 9 on the floor of the US House of Representatives.The second bill was presented on the US Senate floor two days ago by Senators Tom Cotton (R-AR), Little Marco Rubio (R-FL), and John Cornyn (R-TX).US lawmakers fear China’s spyingChinese equipment manufacturers like Huawei, ZTE, Datang, and Zhongxing, are named in the two bills. The reasoning behind the two bills is that Chinese vendors have a close relationship with Chinese state officials, and their equipment may be used to breach and spy on US facilities.Last month, after the first bill was introduced in the US House of Representatives, the Army’s Fort Leonard Wood in Missouri pulled down all of its Hikvision surveillance cameras due to the same fears expressed in the bill.

Source: Two Bills Introduced to Ban US Government from Using Chinese Equipment

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Hawaii’s Cesspools Threaten Drinking Water, Tourism 

Cesspools—holes in the ground where untreated human waste is deposited—have become a crisis in Hawaii, threatening the state’s drinking water, its coral reefs and the famous beaches that are the lifeblood of its tourist economy.Sewage from cesspools is seeping into some of Hawaii’s ocean waters, where it has been blamed for infections suffered by surfers and snorkelers. It is also entering the drinking water in part of the state, pushing nitrate levels close to the legal limit.Hawaii has 88,000 cesspools across its eight major islands, more than any other state. Collectively, they deposit 53 million gallons of raw sewage into the ground every day, according to the state health department. More than 90% of the state’s drinking water comes from groundwater wells.State lawmakers, who outlawed new cesspools in 2016, are scrambling to find a solution to the thousands that exist.

Source: Hawaii’s Cesspools Threaten Drinking Water, Tourism – WSJ

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Oxfam has admitted it ‘got it wrong’ and should have made its Haiti sex scandal public

Oxfam has admitted it ‘got it wrong’ and should have made its Haiti sex scandal public as the Government reviews the charity’s multi-million pound funding.It comes as staff involved in the investigation were given references by former employees and went on to work for other aid agencies who were unaware of their conduct.Oxfam had allowed three men to resign and sacked four others for gross misconduct after they were found to have hosted “Caligula” style sex parties involving Haitian prostitutes in the aftermath of 2010 earthquake.An internal report into the incident uncovered by The Times, which was circulated in 2011, was unable to rule out that under-age women had been solicited.

Source: Oxfam has admitted it ‘got it wrong’ and should have made its Haiti sex scandal public

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DACA Recipient: Dems Using Us As ‘Pawns’

“Dreamer” Hilario Yanez praised President Donald Trump’s leadership on immigration and slammed Democrats for using DACA recipients as “pawns” during a Saturday interview on Fox News.At the end of the day, here’s a guy who wants to provide a pathway to citizenship for myself and, you know, really make a difference in my life,” Yanez said of President Trump. “I’m for that. Also, I believe we need to have border security so this doesn’t happen again.”“And if a wall is necessary to provide another layer for border security to do their job in a safe and responsible manner, then, you know, I think it’s necessary to fund it,” he continued. “The diversity lottery — I think it’s outdated, I think it’s time for people who want to come to the United States to focus on skills so they can contribute to the American economy.”Yanez said he is “frustrated” with Democrats because they have shown an unwillingness to work with Trump on his immigration plan and have used people like him as “pawns” to score political points.

Source: DACA Recipient: Dems Using Us As ‘Pawns& | The Daily Caller

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Rosenstein’s ‘Responsible Encryption’ Proposal is Nonsensical, Privacy Expert Says

A top Justice Department official wants the tech industry and law enforcement to find common ground on “responsible encryption,” but privacy advocates don’t think his plan will prevent the government from abusing its power.

Deputy Attorney General Rod Rosenstein said federal agencies shouldn’t have the ability to directly break into encrypted personal devices, but tech companies should retain backdoor access to assist investigators in criminal cases. Striking a balance between “data security” and “the needs of law enforcement” would enable agents to pursue crimes with exclusively digital evidence, he said Monday at the 14th annual State of the Net conference.

In cases where proof of the crime is usually not physical but digital, like child pornography, investigators can’t access incriminating evidence unless they have access to the encrypted devices where it’s often stored, Rosenstein said.

“You’re going to be allowing criminal activity to occur without law enforcement being able to intervene,” he said. “We favor encryption, but not encryption to the exclusion of legitimate law enforcement concerns.”

But even if tech companies act as middlemen between federal investigators and encrypted information, the fact that a backdoor exists in the first place reduces the inherent security of personal devices, according to Joseph Lorenzo Hall, chief technologist at the Center for Democracy and Technology. He called Rosenstein’s proposal “nonsensical.”

Source: Rosenstein’s ‘Responsible Encryption’ Proposal is Nonsensical, Privacy Expert Says

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Eye could provide “window to the brain” after stroke 

Research into curious bright spots in the eyes on stroke patients’ brain images could one day alter the way these individuals are assessed and treated. A team of scientists at the National Institutes of Health found that a chemical routinely given to stroke patients undergoing brain scans can leak into their eyes, highlighting those areas and potentially providing insight into their strokes. The study was published in Neurology.“We were kind of astounded by this – it’s a very unrecognized phenomenon,” said Richard Leigh, M.D., an assistant clinical investigator at the NIH’s National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS) and the paper’s senior author. “It raises the question of whether there is something we can observe in the eye that would help clinicians evaluate the severity of a stroke and guide us on how best to help patients.

”The eyes glowed so brightly on those images due to gadolinium, a harmless, transparent chemical often given to patients during magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to highlight abnormalities in the brain. In healthy individuals, gadolinium remains in the blood stream and is filtered out by the kidneys. However, when someone has experienced damage to the blood-brain barrier, which controls whether substances in the blood can enter the brain, gadolinium leaks into the brain, creating bright spots that mark the location of brain damage.

Source: Eye could provide “window to the brain” after stroke | National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke

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