YouTube makes video chapters official

Found on Ars Technica on Sunday, 31 May 2020
Browse Internet

YouTube creators can add chapters to their videos via the description. Just start a list of timestamps with "0:00" followed by chapter titles, with one timestamp on each line. If you don't want chapters, just don't start a timestamp list with "0:00."

So, YouTube finally managed to add something that's been standard for videos for more than a decade now.

Uber destroys thousands of bikes and scooters

Found on BBC News on Saturday, 30 May 2020
Browse Various

Uber said it had decided to destroy thousands of its older-model vehicles due to maintenance, liability and safety concerns.

Disappointed charities and organisations suggested the bikes could have been donated to community groups, or sold to individuals to boost the uptake of electric bikes.

"But given many significant issues - including maintenance, liability, safety concerns, and a lack of consumer-grade charging equipment - we decided the best approach was to responsibly recycle them."

"Responsibly recycle them". Given that they cannot recycle them irresponsibly, the statement basically says that they do not care and don't want any more competition to their own business model.

New bill comes with online takedown powers

Found on Newsroom on Friday, 29 May 2020
Browse Censorship

New legislation will enable the Government to issue takedown notices and create internet filters for content deemed objectionable by the Chief Censor, with an eye towards terrorist and violent extremist content.

Select Government agencies - including the police - will be able to "issue a takedown notice relating to a particular online publication to an online content host if "the content is objectionable or if the person "believes, on reasonable grounds, that the online publication is objectionable".

For the purposes of this measure, "online content hosts" refers to companies "both in New Zealand and overseas that provide services to the public".

Wha if Iran copies the law and asks the rest of the world to take down content they believe is objectionable?

Anti-porn filters stop Dominic Cummings trending on Twitter

Found on The Guardian on Thursday, 28 May 2020
Browse Censorship

This sort of accidental filtering has gained a name in computer science: the Scunthorpe problem, so-called because of the Lincolnshire town’s regular issues with such censorship.

Twitter declined to comment on the filtering. The company’s opaque trending algorithms have regularly led to accusations of interference, as users conclude that the absence of a particular topic is a sign of malicious intent, but the answer is rarely as straightforward as it is in this case.

Censorship never really works and is pretty pointless in a so-called open-minded society.

Bankrupt OneWeb seeks license for 48,000 satellites, even more than SpaceX

Found on Ars Technica on Wednesday, 27 May 2020
Browse Astronomy

SpaceX's application to launch 30,000 satellites—in addition to the nearly 12,000 it already has permission for—is consistent with SpaceX's previously announced plans for Starlink.

OneWeb's application to launch nearly 48,000 satellites is surprising because the satellite-broadband company filed for bankruptcy in March.

As if there is not enough junk in space already.

Facebook Knows It Encourages Division. Top Executives Nixed Solutions.

Found on Slashdot on Tuesday, 26 May 2020
Browse Internet

"Our algorithms exploit the human brain's attraction to divisiveness," read a slide from a 2018 presentation. "If left unchecked," it warned, Facebook would feed users "more and more divisive content in an effort to gain user attention & increase time on the platform."

Mr. Zuckerberg and other senior executives largely shelved the basic research, according to previously unreported internal documents and people familiar with the effort, and weakened or blocked efforts to apply its conclusions to Facebook products.

Conflicts are better for business. Ask any weapon dealer.

GitLab runs phishing test against employees – and 20% handed over credentials

Found on Silicon Angle on Monday, 25 May 2020
Browse Internet

Although there are various industry estimates, code repository management firm GitLab Inc. decided to phish their own employees to see what would happen. The result was not good: One in five employees fell for the fake emails.

Six of the 50 employees who received the fake phishing email reported the email as suspicious to GitLab’s security operations team.

So much for "people in IT are most careful".

Banks Get Payout From Equifax Hack While Consumers Still Wait For Compensation

Found on Techdirt on Sunday, 24 May 2020
Browse Legal-Issues

The agency originally promised that impacted users would be able to nab 10 years of free credit reporting or a $125 cash payout if users already subscribed to a credit reporting service. But it didn't take long for the government to backtrack, claiming it was surprised by the number of victims interested in modest compensation, while admitting the settlement failed to set aside enough money to pay even 248,000 of the hack's 147 million victims.

After not providing enough money to live up to that $125 cash payout offer, victims were forced to jump through hoop after hoop to try and get the funds, which won't wind up being anywhere close to $125 whenever the checks do arrive.

You can't pay? Get shut down.

Chris Pratt accidentally deleted 51,000 emails

Found on BBC News on Saturday, 23 May 2020
Browse Various

The Marvel star began sorting through his inbox after telling fans his son, Jack, had teased him for having 35,000 unread messages.

Unfortunately, Pratt pressed the wrong button and was forced to watch as 51,000 emails were erased.

"I'm one of those idiots who will do an IQ test and be like, 'Wanna take an IQ test? Give me your email'. And then I do, which proves my IQ is about seven, I just get junk from everyone and I just don't erase it."

That's one way to get rid of spam; and let the world know that you don't do backups.

Grandmother ordered to delete Facebook photos under GDPR

Found on BBC News on Friday, 22 May 2020
Browse Legal-Issues

A woman must delete photographs of her grandchildren that she posted on Facebook and Pinterest without their parents' permission, a court in the Netherlands has ruled.

The case went to court after the woman refused to delete photographs of her grandchildren which she had posted on social media.

"I think the ruling will surprise a lot of people who probably don't think too much before they tweet or post photos," said Neil Brown, a technology lawyer at Decoded Legal.

That's a pretty sane ruling. People should learn to consider if others want their personal data published.