Opinion | We Are Not the Resistance - The New York Times
But the mind-set of “the resistance” is slippery and dangerous. There’s a reason marchers in the black freedom struggle sang “We Shall Overcome” rather than chanting “We Shall Resist.” Their goal was to overcome a racial caste system — to end it — and to create a new nation, a Beloved Community. Similarly, those who opposed slavery didn’t view themselves as resisters; they were abolitionists.
ee  framing  resistance 
yesterday
Beware of Data Miners Offering Protection | American Civil Liberties Union
t’s a compelling story, but there are lots of reasons to believe it will always be filed under fiction. A major National Research Council report and other experts examining the question have all concluded that pattern-based data-mining — in which suspicious patterns of activity are flagged, cold, by computer algorithms — is very unlikely to be effective against terrorism.
ee  palantir  aclu 
2 days ago
People Are Mad that Facebook and Google Sponsored a Privacy Event - Motherboard
The ethical dilemma of what sponsorship money to accept is a common one for such events. Last year the Computers, Freedom and Privacy Conference included both Google and Facebook among its sponsors. The Computers, Privacy, and Data Protection Conference lists Palantir among its 2016 sponsors. The International Association of Privacy Professionals—"the world's largest information privacy organization"—organizes multiple privacy-focused events every year, and its corporate "members" include Google, Microsoft, AT&T, and even Monsanto.
ee  palantir  transparency  sponsorship  corporations 
2 days ago
Why we won’t be at APC 2018 – DATACTIVE
Palantir is a company specializing in big data analytics, which develops technologies for the military, law enforcement and border control. The deployment of Palantir’s technologies has raised wide-spread concern among civil liberties and human rights advocates. Reporting shows that, in the United States, Palantir has played an important role in enabling the efforts of the ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) to identify, detain, and deport undocumented immigrants, refugees, and asylum seekers. This has resulted in the indefinite detention of thousands of children who have been separated from their parents. This indefensible policy has come under strong criticism from the United Nations and prompted an alliance of technology workers and affected communities, to call – so far, unsuccessfully – for Palantir to cancel its contracts with ICE.
ee  data_justice  cardiff  palantir 
2 days ago
How Connected Is Your Community to Everywhere Else in America? - The New York Times
“This gives us the first way to systematically look at some of those relationships,” said Mark Granovetter, a sociologist at Stanford who has written influential papers on the value of social networks. “They have just scratched the surface here.”
ee  weak_ties  facebook  bubbles 
2 days ago
Lawmakers Demand Intelligence Community Release a Report on Deepfakes - Motherboard
three representatives—Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), Stephanie Murphy (D-Fla.) and Carlos Curbelo (R-Fla.)—sent the letter to DNI director Dan Coats as a plea and a warning: That deepfakes could be used against the U.S. by hostile nations.

“We request that the Intelligence Community report to Congress and the public about the implications of new technologies that allow malicious actors to fabricate audio, video and still images,” they wrote.
ee  deep_fakes  propaganda  manipulation 
5 days ago
The rise of giant consumer startups that said no to investor money - Recode
When Andy Dunn started building his direct-to-consumer menswear brand, Bonobos, in 2007, he saw no great options for e-commerce software. As a result, he estimates that Bonobos spent tens of millions of the $120 million it had raised from investors on building, supporting and tweaking the Bonobos technology stack over the years.

But a decade later, Dunn was able to turn to e-commerce software company Shopify as the platform for Allswell, a mattress brand that Dunn helped incubate in his new role at Walmart where he oversees the company’s digital-native consumer brands.

“Shopify is the absolute game-changer,” Dunn said. “At least 75 percent of the digital brands I talk to today are on Shopify and many of them are now saying we don’t need to invest that much in tech.”
ee  business  entrepreneurship  tech_stack 
5 days ago
How the Weather Channel Made That Insane Hurricane Florence Storm Surge Animation | WIRED
That short window of time belies how much tech underpins the rest of the operation, though. The studio is outfitted with a Mo-Sys camera tracking system, a physical box that attaches to a camera, and uses sensors and an IR signal to triangulate the camera’s position in a virtual space. TWC also needed specialized software to translate the Unreal Engine graphics into a broadcast-ready format.

Now that much of the groundwork is laid, expect to see more of these immersive demonstrations—and keep an eye out for the surprising amount of detail they can have.
ee  infographic  VR  animation  weather 
7 days ago
Yuval Harari: Hacking Humanity | CBC Radio
Our brains are getting hacked. Artificial intelligence, biotechnology and ever-sophisticated algorithms are tapping into our values, habits, tastes, desires and the very thought patterns that define us — all to control how we shop, what we read, and whom we vote for. <...> We are too easily hacked — and we shouldn't even be surprised by the fact. We do not choose the family into which we're born, nor the place, nor our physical or mental attributes, nor even our desires. So does this mean we're hardwired to be controlled by corporate and governmental agencies? Not quite. We can use artificial intelligence to combat the intrusions of artificial intelligence. So any time a hack is about to occur, whether it's information is being collected while we're online, or traveling with our cell phones in hand, we could be notified that the hack is in progress, and have the option to block it.
AI  manipulation 
10 days ago
India’s misguided move towards data localisation | Financial Times
"A draft government policy envisages a ban on the international transfer of data generated by Indian ecommerce users. A similar policy implemented by the Reserve Bank of India will prohibit companies sending financial data abroad from October.

"Both Indian and foreign companies, particularly from the US, have protested... Such data localisation measures are on the rise around the world. Frequently they use legitimate concerns such as cyber security or privacy as covers for old-fashioned protectionism."
gdpr  splinternet  india 
10 days ago
Tech Leavers | Kapor Center
The Tech Leavers Study is a first-of-its-kind national study examining why people voluntarily left their jobs in tech. The Kapor Center and Harris Poll surveyed a representative sample of more than 2,000 U.S. adults who have left a job in a technology-related industry or function within the last three years.
diversity  discrimination  employment  bias  ee 
10 days ago
Opinion: Sex Abuse Is Draining Nonprofits of Dedicated Workers. Here’s a Solution. - The Chronicle of Philanthropy
If you want the nonprofit world to be shaped by smart, talented, visionary people, new practices need to be put in place by those who hold influence. In my experience, too many in philanthropy — both women and men — have been unwitting accomplices to the pressures placed on women like me.

Change won’t happen simply by holding more training sessions on how to prevent sexual harassment or adopting more polices. Instead it takes foundations recognizing that they are losing out on their investments when they give money to organizations that tolerate bad management, sexual abuse, racism, and bullies who run talented people out of nonprofits. There are some simple ways grant makers can avoid amplifying biases:
ee  sexual_harassment  sunlight 
10 days ago
Open access — the movie
review of Paywall, the film on OA which we sponsored. Please include in digest.
OA  mh 
11 days ago
Open-access movement hits the silver screen
Paywall, please include in digest - we supported this film
OA 
11 days ago
Why Google Fiber Is High-Speed Internet’s Most Successful Failure
But we believe Google Fiber’s most significant impact was to change the nature of relations between infrastructure providers and local authorities. Thanks to Google Fiber, the monopoly mindset gave way to one in which both sides understood the other could walk away. Cities learned that inefficient construction management would lead providers to invest elsewhere, while ISPs came to see that cities could only do so much to improve the economics of upgrades and new deployments. Following Google’s lead, the ISPs and the cities created public-private partnerships such as Research Triangle’s North Carolina Next Generation Network, in which both got more, in terms of their goals, than they gave.
ee  fiber  google  infrastructure 
11 days ago
Click, copy, paste: Is our proposed copyright bill futureproof? | City Press
we support the ReCreate Coalition in South Africa, mentioned in the article.
Copyright  reform  mh 
12 days ago
A Facebook War: Libyans Battle on the Streets and on Screens - The New York Times
The New York Times found evidence of military-grade weapons being openly traded, despite the company’s policies forbidding such commerce. Human traffickers advertise their success in helping illegal migrants reach Europe by sea, and use their pages to drum up more business. Practically every armed group in Libya, and even some of their detention centers, have their own Facebook page.
ee  libya  facebook 
14 days ago
An Overview of National AI Strategies – Politics + AI – Medium
This article summarizes the key policies and goals of each strategy, as well as related policies and initiatives that have announced since the release of the initial strategies. It also includes countries that have announced their intention to develop a strategy or have related AI policies in place.

I plan to continuously update this article as new strategies and initiatives are announced. If a country or policy is missing (or if something in the summary is incorrect), please leave a comment and I will update the article as soon as possible.
ai  ee  national 
16 days ago
The simple but ingenious system Taiwan uses to crowdsource its laws - MIT Technology Review
If people can propose their ideas and comments but they cannot reply to each other, then it drastically reduces the motivation for trolls to troll,” Tang says.The second is that it uses the upvotes and downvotes to generate a kind of map of all the participants in the debate, clustering together people who have voted similarly. People then naturally try to draft comments that will win votes from both sides of a divide, gradually eliminating the gaps.
ee  taiwan  debate  platform  government  democracy 
16 days ago
A new fleet of satellites is detecting human rights abuses from space - Hack - triple j
The satellites have resolution of about 30cm per pixel, meaning each pixel of an image shows 30cm on the ground. That's detained enough to be able to pick out people, or to tell which way a car is driving from the direction of its windshield.

Despite this coverage, satellites rarely capture the moment of an atrocity - normally it's images immediately before and immediately after.

That means satellite images are only as good as the analyst.
ee  satellites  geodata  humanrights 
18 days ago
Her rapist was convicted because of a rape kit. So why are so many kits untested? | KUOW News and Information
Ohio also invested heavily in new robotics to process dozens of samples at once and save scientists from repetitive manual tasks, such as sucking up and squeezing out drops of chemicals with pipettes.

“The robots do about three times the amount of work that an individual scientist could do,” Slaper said.
ee  rape_kit  AI  crime  automation  RABA 
5 weeks ago
Bots didn’t flop; they just became invisible - The Verge
In other words, the bots never really went away; they just became invisible. More automated messaging can be found on companies’ websites and apps than ever before. The work continues. And as Intercom’s own story has shown, businesses’ appetites for the automation they enable is only increasing. (Intercom released a tool to let businesses build custom chat bots earlier this month.)
ee  bots 
5 weeks ago
The Unlikely Activists Who Took On Silicon Valley — and Won - The New York Times
The surveillance capitalists didn’t just sell more deodorant; they had built one of the most powerful tools ever invented for winning elections. Roughly the same suite of technologies helped elect Obama, a pragmatic liberal who promised racial progress and a benevolent globalism, and Trump, a strident nationalist who adeptly employs social media to stoke racial panic and has set out to demolish the American-led world order.
privacy  surveillance  ee  facebook  google  activism  ashkan 
5 weeks ago
Evening Standard comment: Artificial intelligence will be good for the NHS | London Evening Standard
The exciting medical breakthrough announced today by doctors at London’s Moorfields Eye Hospital, in which artificial intelligence has been used to diagnose more than 50 types of eye disease and prioritise the patients with the most severe conditions for the speediest treatment, promises to bring major benefits for the hundreds of thousands of people who suffer from potentially sight-threatening conditions.
ee  ai  machinelearning  diagnosis  health  deep_mind 
5 weeks ago
US Students Turn Grief Into Tech Startup After France Attack - The New York Times
Banerjee and several classmates have since turned their grief into a startup called Archer that builds digital tools to help journalists, investigators and human rights workers tackle terrorism, sanctions evasion, corruption and other global violence.
ee  osint  berkeley  human_rights  metadata 
5 weeks ago
A better statistical estimation of known Syrian war victims
In a paper available online and due for publication in the June issue of the Annals of Applied Statistics, the scientists report on a four-year effort to combine a data-indexing method called “hashing with statistical estimation.” The new method produces real-time estimates of documented, identified victims with a far lower margin of error than existing statistical methods for finding duplicate records in databases.
ee  hrdag  grantee  statistics  database  noise  human_rights  humanrights 
6 weeks ago
Facebook, Google and more unite to let you transfer data between apps | TechCrunch
for an open source data portability platform any online service can join.
GDPR  portability  competition  vf 
6 weeks ago
Information Escrows to Combat Code Fraud | Berkeley Institute for Data Science
Code fraud is the implementation of software that induces illegal, unethical, or otherwise malicious outcomes. As political, manufacturing, and social systems increasingly run on software, the consequences of code fraud will proliferate and diversify.One proposal for reducing the risk associated with whistleblowing is adapted from an information escrow platform developed to allow victims of sexual harassment to store reports of their attacks "in escrow" on a third-party platform called Callisto. Reporting code fraud, or any other kind of fraud, is clearly different than reporting sexual assault. One quality these situations share is that making a report is risky for the claimant, especially if that person is the only one making the accusation. If two or more employees come forward to report the same fraud or two women report the same assailant, not only are their cases stronger, but they will not bear the burden of reporting alone.
ee  Callisto  information_escrow  escrow  data  coding 
6 weeks ago
Identifying Deep Fakes
This article in Technology review talks about the work of the US Department of Defence to catch deep fakes.
6 weeks ago
Issue Brief: The ‘Demand Side’ of the Disinformation Crisis – NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR DEMOCRACY
Supply-side analyses of disinformation typically begin with understanding the dissemination of false, misleading, divisive, or inflammatory content. This content reaches audiences incidentally as it moves through the media ecosystem. It is sometimes amplified by manipulation of mainstream media sources or by journalistic mistakes. Misled or confused, the audience then doubts accounts from authoritative sources. During moments of crisis or during rapidly unfolding events, users may accidentally share disinformation out of a desire to help or, in a moment of fear or anger, because they do not realize they have been misled.

These assumptions concerning the spread of disinformation may hold true for many people much of the time. However, some subset of the population consistently consumes and shares disinformation. These individuals may be invested in the narratives supported by disinformation campaigns. Their worldview or sense of self may also lead them to believe certain sources or stories over others. In some instances, their reliance on the new, hyper-digitized, freewheeling information environment may lead them down paths of paranoia and radicalization that were more difficult to discover and access before the internet’s advent. Such factors make up the ‘demand side’ of the disinformation challenge.
ee  disinformation 
7 weeks ago
Why We’re Sharing 3 Million Russian Troll Tweets | FiveThirtyEight
That resulting data set is at the heart of a working paper by Linvill and Warren, currently under review at an academic journal, titled “Troll Factories: The Internet Research Agency and State-Sponsored Agenda Building.”

In the paper, Linvill and Warren divide the IRA’s trolling into five distinct categories, or roles: Right Troll, Left Troll, News Feed, Hashtag Gamer and Fearmonger. (These category codes are included in the data.)
propaganda  twitter  russia  ee  troll 
7 weeks ago
Facebook Uncovers Active Influence Operation
This is the early work of the DFR Lab at the Atlantic Council to analyze the accounts that have been identified by Facebook as attempting to influence the US mid-term elections. There will be more detail posted in the coming days.
7 weeks ago
As Google AI researcher accused of harassment, female data scientists speak of 'broken system' | Technology | The Guardian
Lum is well aware of the importance of diversity in her field. She has researched predictive policing programs, exposing how flawed data and AI can replicate and exacerbate racially biased law enforcement practices.
analytics  advocacy  ee  HRDAG  sexual_harassment  AI 
7 weeks ago
Russia Uses Interpol Red Notices Against Dissidents - The Atlantic
Less examined, however, has been Russia’s abuse of Interpol and the American court system to persecute the Kremlin’s rivals in the United States—a problem that the Atlantic Council described in a recent report as another form of “interference” by Russia. Russia’s requests to Interpol to issue Red Notices—the closest instrument to an international arrest warrant in use today—against Kremlin opponents are being met with increasing deference by the Department of Homeland Security, according to immigration attorneys and experts in transnational crime and corruption with whom I spoke.
ee  corruption  interpol 
7 weeks ago
Mozilla Festival
for the calendar in our digest
Mozilla  Foundation  mh 
8 weeks ago
How to Teach Computer Ethics through Science Fiction | August 2018 | Communications of the ACM
In fields with a strong practical component and established body of knowledge (such as medicine, engineering, and the undergraduate levels of many sciences) there is a temptation to teach solely through the transmitting of facts, rather than encouraging discussion and dissent.11 This approach, which many undergraduates have seen, can condition them to interpret what they learn in terms of an authority-based view of "truth" that in turn leaves them unequipped to reason about situations involving no single correct answer or think cogently about ethical trade-offs.23,34 We want to teach our students to move past this authority-based view and find the best, most efficient solution to technical problems; we argue that the same skills must be developed to engage with ethical challenges that arise from the substance of their work as well.
ethics  ee  computer_science 
8 weeks ago
I Helped Design The Election Simulation 'Parlor Game' Rebekah Mercer Got, And It's Not What You Think | Techdirt
The five of us helped put together a fun game in which players take on the roles of various campaigns, special interests and factions, and run through a full election cycle. A key part of the game is how money and influence play into getting out a message and how technology and different potential alliances may factor into all of this. Again, the idea was a simulation to help people think through what might happen and how it might impact things. It was not to predict the future or to get people hyped up on destroying democracy.
ee  culture  design  disinformation 
9 weeks ago
Russian Influence Campaign Sought To Exploit Americans' Trust In Local News : NPR
The discovery and suspension of the local accounts suggests two things as investigators continue to build their understanding about Russia's campaign of active measures against the United States and the West.

First, that the Russian misinformation project was a years-long effort, one that wasn't simply focused on the 2016 election but on destabilizing the United States over an extended period of time.

"The Russians are playing a long game. They've developed a presence on social media. They've created these fictitious persons and fictitious organizations that have built up over a period of time a certain trustworthiness among people that follow them," said Rep. Adam Schiff, the top Democrat on the House intelligence committee.
media  twitter  ee  disinformation 
10 weeks ago
Chinese State-Linked Hackers Target Cambodian Elections | Time
Over the past few months, numerous rights groups, reporters and Cambodia observers have reported seeing a large spike in phishing messages and hacking attempts. Now a report from a leading U.S. cybersecurity firm suggests such cases may be linked to a large scale operation from a Chinese cyber espionage group seeking to monitor the country’s upcoming and contentious July 29 national elections.
China  manipulation  elections 
10 weeks ago
Bitch Media: Turning Readers Into Funders | INNovation
Could a digital platform designed to deepen the relationship between readers and reporters help nonprofit news outlets solve their funding challenges? Bitch Media put Hearken to the test.
ee  journalism  engagement  platform 
10 weeks ago
Complicating the Narratives – The Whole Story
As researchers have established in hundreds of experiments over the past half-century, the way to counter the kind of tribal prejudice we are seeing is to expose people to the other tribe or new information in ways they can accept. When conflict is cliché, complexity is breaking news.
politics  journalism  conflict  ee 
10 weeks ago
How an algorithm may decide your career - Economist
Many companies, including Vodafone and Intel, use a video-interview service called HireVue. Candidates are quizzed while an artificial-intelligence (AI) program analyses their facial expressions (maintaining eye contact with the camera is advisable) and language patterns (sounding confident is the trick). People who wave their arms about or slouch in their seat are likely to fail. Only if they pass that test will the applicants meet some humans.
algorithms  ethics  future_of_work 
11 weeks ago
What Confucius, The Buddha, and Aristotle can teach us about technology | CBC Radio
Philosophy professor Shannon Vallor studies ethics and emerging technology. She argues that to deal with the relentless pace of technological change, we should take inspiration from traditional virtue ethics: in particular, the philosophical work of Confucius, Aristotle, and The Buddha.

Virtue ethics of different cultures share a focus on developing moral character through particular disciplines and practices. The goal is to develop skills in 'practical wisdom'. It's not about learning a set of ethical rules; it's about refining the ability to make wise decisions in a variety of circumstances.
ethics  attention 
11 weeks ago
Ways to think about machine learning — Benedict Evans
Five years ago, if you gave a computer a pile of photos, it couldn’t do much more than sort them by size. A ten year old could sort them into men and women, a fifteen year old into cool and uncool and an intern could say ‘this one’s really interesting’. Today, with ML, the computer will match the ten year old and perhaps the fifteen year old. It might never get to the intern. But what would you do if you had a million fifteen year olds to look at your data? What calls would you listen to, what images would you look at, and what file transfers or credit card payments would you inspect?
ee  machinelearning  ai 
12 weeks ago
One Building, One Bomb: How Assad Gassed His Own People - The New York Times
We created a virtual crime scene to investigate this bombing. Explore the scene in augmented reality.
ee  AR  syria  NYT  spatial  rendering 
12 weeks ago
Deepfakes Were Created As a Way to Own Women's Bodies—We Can't Forget That - Broadly
In major news outlets around the world, the deepfakes story blitzed straight past sex and consent and into “fake news” territory. As coverage graduated from “OMG nudes” to “OMG what if someone makes fake videos of Trump launching nukes,” the media attention deepfakes garnered stopped grappling with how it began.n these online spaces, men’s sense of entitlement over women’s bodies tends to go entirely unchecked. Users feed off one another to create a sense that they are the kings of the universe, that they answer to no one. This logic is how you get incels and pickup artists, and it’s how you get deepfakes: a group of men who see no harm in treating women as mere images, and view making and spreading algorithmically weaponized revenge porn as a hobby as innocent and timeless as trading baseball cards.This is the point I kept coming back to: We have to pay attention to the spirit of deepfakes as it started. We can move beyond it, and talk at length about ethical uses of artificial intelligence, fake news literacy, and who has access to powerful tools like machine learning. But we must first acknowledge that the technology that could start a nuclear war was born as a way for men to have their full, fantastical way with women’s bodies.
ee  deepfakes 
june 2018
Trump has turned words into weapons. And he's winning the linguistic war | George P Lakoff and Gil Duran | Opinion | The Guardian
Then there are what cognitive scientists call “salient exemplars” – well-publicized individual cases, where wide publicity leads the public to take them as having a high probability and typifying a whole class. Trump turns them into weaponized stereotypes. He is a master at defaming entire groups of people as liars, rapists, terrorists – or in the case of US law enforcement and intelligence agencies – agents of corruption.
ee  propaganda  language  twitter  trump 
june 2018
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