by on December 25, 2017
  A news conference in Mexico City. The president’s administration has spent nearly $2 billion on advertising in the past five years. Running a newspaper, radio station or television outlet in Mexico usually means relying on a single, powerful client that spends exorbitant sums on advertising with a simple warning: “I do not pay you to criticize me.” That client is the government of Mexico. President Enrique Peña Nieto’s administration has spent hundreds of millions of dollars a ...
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by on December 31, 2017
Here's what you need to know about mesh networking.  ast week, the Federal Communications Commission went ahead with its deeply unpopular plan to end net neutrality protections, giving internet service providers like AT&T, Verizon, and Comcast unprecedented control of our experience online. But what if you and your community could become your own internet service provider? Congress can still reject the FCC’s decision, though at least one proposed billsuggests there’s reason not to be overly op...
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by on January 28, 2018
THE EMAIL ARRIVED just as Megan Squire was starting to cook Thanksgiving dinner. She was flitting between the kitchen, where some chicken soup was simmering, and her living room office, when she saw the subject line flash on her laptop screen: “LOSer Leak.” Squire recognized the acronym of the League of the South, a neo-­Confederate organization whose leaders have called for a “second secession” and the return of slavery. An anonymous insider had released the names, addresses, emails, pass...
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by on April 6, 2018
  In today’s installment of "I’m Not Terrified, You Are," Bloomberg Law reports on a FedBizOpps.gov posting by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) with the relatively benign-sounding subject “Media Monitoring Services.” The details of the attached Request for Information, however, outline a plan to gather and monitor the public activities of media professionals and influencers and are enough to cause nightmares of constitutional proportions, particularly as the freedom of the press i...
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by on February 10, 2018
Successful activism is going to take more than a few shares on Facebook, retweets on Twitter, or likes on Instagram. U.S. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi speaks during a rally against child poverty on April 9, 2017, in Los Angeles, Calif. On Wednesday, 77-year-old House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi walked onto the House floor in 4-inch heels to deliver what would become the longest-recorded speech to have been delivered in the House of Representatives. She spoke on behalf of the D...
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by on July 17, 2018
The country’s leading manufacturer of voting machines has switched gears and admitted that the company installed remote-access software on election-management systems sold over the course of a six-year period. This comes as a reversal of a previous public statement from the vendor in question. The admission comes by way of an April letter sent to Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR) by Election System and Software (ES&S) and recently obtained by Motherboard. The letter notes: [ES&S] provided pcA...
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by on February 22, 2018
The FCC’s “Restoring Internet Freedom” order, which vastly curtails the agency’s 2015 net neutrality rules, has officially taken effect by being entered the Federal Register. The order, published Thursday morning, may sound like the end of the line, but in fact this is the green light for everyone in the country, from citizens to attorney generals to governors and senators, to begin the official battle against the FCC’s ill-advised, technically backwards, and deeply unpopular rule. Littl...
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by on December 29, 2017
Library of Congress The Library of Congress is going to start being more selective about which tweets it decides to save in its archives. Since 2010, the research library for the United States Congress has been archiving all public tweets dating back to Twitter’s launch in 2006. Not anymore. Beginning in 2018, the Library of Congress says it will “continue to acquire tweets but will do so on a very selective basis.” “Generally, the tweets collected and archived will be thematic a...
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by on January 30, 2018
A new coalition of Canadian companies is calling on the local telecom regulator CRTC to establish a local piracy site blocking program. The plan is the first of its kind in North America, aimed at lowering local piracy rates. Opponents, however, believe the proposal goes too far and equate it to a censorship deal. In recent years pirate sites have been blocked around the world, from Europe, through Asia, and even Down Under. While many of the large corporations backing these blocka...
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by on May 5, 2018
Cell tower interceptors, often called "stingrays" or "dirtboxes," mimic traditional cell towers. A coalition of civil rights and immigrant advocacy groups has penned a letter in support of a state bill that would force California police and sheriff agencies to disclose all of their surveillance gear, as Oakland this week approved similar requirements through what may be the strongest city surveillance ordinance in the country. Supporters say they believe the legislation will propel oth...
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by on February 14, 2018
Growing food in cities became popular in Europe and North America during and immediately after World War II. Urban farming provided citizens with food, at a time when resources were desperately scarce. In the decades that followed, parcels of land which had been given over to allotments and city farms were gradually taken up for urban development. But recently, there has been a renewed interest in urban farming – albeit for very different reasons than before. As part of a recent research proj...
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by on July 19, 2018
Hide and seek could take on new meaning if schools take RealNetworks up on this offer. The company is offering K-12 learning institutions free facial recognition software that can be downloaded via its website, Technology Review reports. The software is called SAFR, and according to a press release, it uses IP-based cameras and other hardware to “recognize staff, students, and visitors in real time to help improve school safety.” It also promises to “streamlin[e] entry, record keeping, ca...
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