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Frank Nikol   Someone else

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Frank Nikol   Someone else

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theprawn
4 days ago
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Facebook Is Steering Users Away From Privacy Protections

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Critics say Facebook is using design tricks to win users' permission to collect personal data under new European rules.
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theprawn
6 days ago
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Ofc, but who didn't see this coming?
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Woody Harrelson’s Character From True Detective Watches the Pee Tape

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In a clip from his ABC interview with George Stephanopoulos, James Comey addressed the so-called Steele dossier’s infamous uncorroborated allegation that Russian operatives have video of Donald Trump employing prostitutes to urinate on a hotel bed that Barack Obama once used:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Did you believe his denial?

COMEY: I honestly never thought these words would come out of my mouth, but I don’t know whether the current president of the United States was with prostitutes peeing on each other in Moscow in 2013. It’s possible. But I don’t know.

This set the highbrow intellectuals on Slate’s staff to speculating.

We have honored the winning entry above the best way we know how: by integrating it into a parodic high-concept joke involving a show that aired four years ago. Enjoy!



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theprawn
7 days ago
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Oh boys...
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Everything Mark Zuckerberg Will Follow Up On for Congress

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If you're a member of Congress, Mark Zuckerberg's team will get back to you.
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theprawn
13 days ago
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Mark Zuckerberg Does Not Like Personal Privacy

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As Mark Zuckerberg wriggles his way past a Senate committee that’s pretty clearly overmatched in the IQ department, it’s important to remember why Facebook has such big privacy problems. It’s because Mark Zuckerberg wants it that way. Here he is in 2008 talking about his campaign to get people to stop caring about personal privacy:

The challenge we have is to bring people along that whole path. First, get people onto Facebook and make it so that people can be comfortable sharing information online. Four years ago, when Facebook was getting started, most people didn’t want to put up any information about themselves on the internet. We got people through this really big hurdle of wanting to put up their full name or real picture or mobile phone number.

And again in 2010, telling an interviewer that as Facebook’s campaign to change privacy norms progresses, they try to stay ahead of the curve by reducing privacy protections even further:

People have really gotten comfortable not only sharing more information and different kinds, but more openly and with more people. That social norm is just something that has evolved over time. We view it as our role in the system to constantly be innovating and be updating what our system is to reflect what the current social norms are.

Zuckerberg’s overriding vision from Day One has been unvarying: to get people to share everything about themselves on Facebook. If they do it voluntarily, that’s great. If they don’t do it voluntarily, then Facebook tricks them—and the standard Facebook trick is both simple and surprisingly effective: set privacy defaults as loosely as possible and wait to see if anyone notices. If they do, tighten them the minimal amount needed to quiet the outrage and then do an interview where Zuckerberg talks earnestly about how good their privacy controls are. Rinse and repeat. Facebook has used this approach over and over and over, and it seems to work great no matter how many times they do it.

Of course, one of the big ironies of today’s Senate hearing is that if Congress did decide to get serious about privacy—yes, yes, I know. Stop laughing. Just hear me out. If Congress did decide to get serious about privacy, it might do nothing but benefit Facebook at this point. After all, loose privacy controls aren’t only about targeting ads. They’re also about making it possible for other people to find you. This is what makes a social network grow in the first place. But Facebook already has 2 billion users. That’s nearly every internet user in the world outside China, so there’s a hard limit on their future growth rate.

In other words, stricter privacy controls wouldn’t hurt Facebook all that much at this point. They’d only hurt Facebook’s smaller competitors, who would find it harder to grow as quickly as Facebook did.

It’s still worth doing, though. A good start would be to work with Europe on adopting a common set of privacy standards that are based far more on those in the EU than those in the US. I can dream, can’t I?

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theprawn
14 days ago
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Estonia's President Talks AI, Genetic Testing, and Dealing with Russia

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Kersti Kaljulaid, Estonia’s youngest and first female president, lays out her plans for moving the country from a traditional state to a digital society.
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theprawn
19 days ago
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Not my president 😢
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