I was recently interviewed, in my capacity as an Internet law and policy attorney, and head of the Institute for Social Internet Public Policy, for an article sponsored by RSA about the impact that GDPR (the EU’s General Data Protection Rules), which goes into effect in the European Union in May 2018, is going to impact, well, everything. And, in particular, about how it will impact U.S. based businesses, because, trust me, it will.
The Blue Whale Challenge, also known as the Blue Whale Game, is purported to be a deadly game which targets teenagers online and through social media. Said to be named after the way a blue whale will beach itself and die, Blue Whale consists of 50 challenges, increasingly harmful, photographic completion of which you send back to your handler (known as the ‘curator’ or the ‘administrator’), with the final fiftieth challenge being suicide, also broadcast via social media.
Oh Internet video, the bane of those Internet citizens who prefer to read text. If you, like many others, have been searching the world over (quite literally) for the full text of French president Emmanuel Macron’s speech following the United States’ withdrawal from the Paris Climate Agreement (more formally known as the Paris Climate Accord), we have it for you! What is most unusual is that following Macron’s speech on the subject in French (he is the president of France after all), he gave a speech in English, clearly for Americans and other English speakers. It is in this English address that he uttered the potshot heard round the world: “Make our planet great again.”
Facebook has taken out a full-page “Tips for Spotting False News” ad in British newspapers, telling people how to spot and avoid fake news ahead of the UK general election. Facebook has also been deleting tens of thousands of fake Facebook accounts that were created solely to spew false news stories, particularly ahead of elections. In fact, Facebook has said that ahead of this week’s election in France, they removed more than 30,000 accounts that were spreading fake news stories that could have (and were likely intended to) influence that election.
The Internet in general, and social media in particular, has changed everything. Here are the actual facts of the incident in which a bloodied Kentucky doctor – Dr. David Dao – ended up being dragged off United Airlines flight 3411 in the bump heard ’round the world, along with the full text of the apology comment from United CEO Oscar Munoz.
LiveJournal has come fully under Russian control since January of this year, and as of last week LiveJournal and its users are now completely subject to Russian law. In reality, LiveJournal (also known as LJ), a place to, well, live journal your thoughts, etc., has been owned by Russian interests since 2007, but many users either didn’t know that, or didn’t care because LJ was still being managed out of California, and the LiveJournal servers were located in California. But all that has changed. (Note: We have provided the full text of both the LiveJournal TOS and the controlling Russian law at the end of this article.)
If you’re wondering “What is blockchain” (also known as “block chain”), you’re not alone. Unless you’ve been following Bitcoin, you may only be hearing the term “blockchain” for the first time now, as it’s been in the news lately.
The United States’ neighbors to the north have sent a love letter to the U.S. in the form of a ‘Tell America It’s Great’ hashtag (#TellAmericaItsGreat) and Internet video campaign. And the video greetings from Canadian individuals, telling the U.S. why they think America is great are pouring in, reminding us that, as one poster put it, America is already great.
Samsung has issued a massive recall of all Galaxy Note 7 phones that have batteries which have been found to catch fire and in some cases explode. The recall affects all countries in which Samsung has sold the Note 7 containing the defective battery, except China; the Galaxy 7s sold in China have a different battery.
A new Russian facial recognition app called FindFace is raising privacy concerns around the world. Unlike other recent facial recognition systems, Find Face works somewhat in reverse: rather than recognizing images of someone already known to you, it allows you to take a picture of a stranger, and then it will identify who the person is for you. Source say that so far it works about 70% of the time, based on it’s usage with Vkontakte (also known as VK), which, with 200million users, is said to be the European equivalent of Facebook, and third in size only behind Facebook and Twitter.
A new report by the UK’s top Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation, David Anderson, says that bulk interception and acquisition of Internet and communications data is of ‘vital utility’ to security and intelligence agencies.
What’s in a name? Plenty, if the name of your residence happens to include the word ‘Isis’ in it. In fact, if your address includes “Isis”, Paypal will not process transactions for you!
Tamara Fields became a widow when her husband, Lloyd Carl Fields Jr., was killed in a terrorist attack in Jordan. Now Fields is suing Twitter, claiming that Twitter is not doing enough to shut down ISIS Twitter accounts, which they use for recruiting and planning terror attacks. (Full text of Tamara Fields v. Twitter lawsuit is linked below.)