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October 27, 2016
Truthdig: Drilling Beneath the Headlines
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By James Joyce

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Tag: Tech

Google Has Quietly Dropped Ban on Personally Identifiable Web-Tracking

Over the summer, the tech giant substituted new language in its privacy policy that says browsing habits “may be” combined with what the company learns from a user’s use of gmail and other tools.

Posted on Oct 24, 2016 READ MORE


Square, Category Page

Immigration Is Fueling Innovation in Silicon Valley

Former “Dreamer” Sarahi Espinoza Salamanca, now a startup CEO, is among a growing number of Latino entrepreneurs redefining the American tech industry.

Posted on Jun 9, 2016 READ MORE

VIDEO: John Oliver Gives All the Reasons to Be on Apple’s Side in Encryption Fight With the FBI

The “Last Week Tonight” host delves into the complex issues Apple and the U.S. government are battling over since the FBI decided it needs a back door into the company’s products.

Posted on Mar 14, 2016 WATCH & LISTEN

San Francisco ‘Tech Bro’ Complains to Mayor That He Has to See Poor People in Despair

Tech entrepreneur Justin Keller stoked the city’s growing reputation for insensitivity to the misery of the impoverished by telling Mayor Ed Lee in an open letter that he is “outraged” that wealthy workers, who he says “have earned their right to live in the city,” have to see people in pain and despair.

Posted on Feb 18, 2016 READ MORE

Google Is Accused of Spying on Kindergartners

A digital rights advocacy group has filed a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission accusing the tech giant of spying on up to 40 million students and school officials who use the company’s Chromebook laptops.

Posted on Dec 12, 2015 READ MORE

Privacy Not Included: Federal Law Lags Behind New Tech

The federal privacy law known as HIPAA doesn’t cover home paternity tests, fitness trackers or health apps. When a Florida woman complained after seeing the paternity test results of thousands of people online, federal regulators told her they didn’t have jurisdiction.

Posted on Nov 19, 2015 READ MORE

Big Tech May Be Getting Way Too Big—Here’s Why

In this new Gilded Age, Big Tech—along with Big Pharma, giant health insurance companies, Big Agriculture and the largest banks on Wall Street—is dominating our economy and our politics.

Posted on Sep 27, 2015 READ MORE

Can Apple, Google and Facebook Save Us From Big Brother?

The big tech companies have the resources to launch a campaign for privacy that could change the world. As one scholar and researcher has written, “They may be our best chance out of this surveillance mess.”

Posted on Sep 11, 2015 READ MORE

Google Will Become ‘Alphabet’ in Biggest Change in the Company’s History

“Google is not a conventional company. We do not intend to become one,” said co-founder Larry Page in Monday’s surprise announcement.

Posted on Aug 10, 2015 READ MORE

Paul Hudson (CC BY 2.0)

The Country That Actually Started the Middle East Nuclear Arms Race (Hint: Not Iran)

As the Iran deal is debated, it’s important to keep in mind who’s responsible for the nuclear arms race in the Middle East; turns out a “useless liberal arts degree” has become a hot commodity in the tech world; meanwhile, a writer explores Donald Trump’s mob ties. These discoveries and more after the jump.

Posted on Jul 30, 2015 READ MORE

Silicon Valley Emerges as a Political Force

When it comes to the political money chase, the Northern California home of the world’s technology giants spreads the wealth to both parties—positioning the tech industry as one of the most powerful forces in American politics.

Posted on Jul 18, 2015 READ MORE

African-Americans Make Up Less Than 2 Percent of Facebook and Twitter Staff

Despite the rainbow nature of their users, recent statistics reveal a staggering lack of workforce diversity.

Posted on Jul 2, 2015 READ MORE

California Labor Commission Officially Calls Uber Driver an Uber Employee

A California labor agency has determined that, at least in one instance, an Uber driver is actually an employee of the company, not an independent contractor who happens to rely on Uber-provided information to drive her business. But what does this mean for the ride-sharing behemoth?

Posted on Jun 17, 2015 READ MORE

SnaPsi Сталкер (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Surveillance State Repeal Bill Gets Bipartisan Support

Rep. Mark Pocan, D-Wis., is sponsoring the proposed law with the help of five other House members, including Rep. Thomas Massie, R-Ky. When Congress returns from recess next week, Pocan plans to present the bill in an effort to repeal parts of the Patriot Act.

Posted on Apr 7, 2015 READ MORE

Here Comes the Apple Watch

Posted on Mar 12, 2015 ENLARGE


If Ubiquitous Surveillance Doesn’t Stop Terrorism, Why Does the NSA Want to Know Everything?

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: Robert Scheer responds to new revelations about NSA hacks on hard drives and nearly every cell in the U.S. Also, David Blau on the childcare problem.

Posted on Feb 20, 2015 READ MORE

If Ubiquitous Surveillance Doesn’t Stop Terrorism, Why Does the NSA Want to Know Everything?

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: Robert Scheer responds to new revelations about NSA hacks on hard drives and nearly every mobile phone in the U.S. Also, David Blau on the childcare problem.

Posted on Feb 20, 2015 WATCH & LISTEN

Hadrian /

T-Mobile Now Offers Fancy Phones on Bad Credit, but There’s a Catch

For the first time, a carrier is selling expensive phones and tablets with zero-percent interest to customers with terrible credit.

Posted on Jan 23, 2015 READ MORE

Microsoft Is Going to Fill the World With Holograms

Drawing inspiration from the stuff of fantasy, Microsoft has announced plans to release a new platform and “augmented reality visor” that will fill your world with videos, images and three-dimensional objects.

Posted on Jan 21, 2015 WATCH & LISTEN

Charlie Hebdo

You Can Now Buy the Historic Charlie Hebdo Issue on Your Phone

Charlie Hebdo ordered 5 million copies of its defiant post-massacre issue to be printed, and the first run of 3 million sold out in minutes. For those who want to know what all the fuss is about, the satirical publication is now available on iPhone, Android and Windows Phone.

Posted on Jan 15, 2015 READ MORE

Google’s Mix-and-Match Phone Is Becoming a Reality

Google announced that its planet-friendly Project Ara phone has taken a leap forward in development and will be on trial sale in Puerto Rico later this year.

Posted on Jan 14, 2015 READ MORE


China Partners With Gay Hookup App to Spread AIDS Awareness

China decriminalized gay sex only in 1997, and stigmas remain, but a doubling of HIV infections among young urbanites has made for some unlikely bedfellows.

Posted on Dec 8, 2014 READ MORE


AT&T Stops Tracking Customers but Verizon Remains Committed to Prying

Negative press coverage has forced the wireless carrier to reconsider selling customer data to advertisers.

Posted on Nov 14, 2014 READ MORE

Dark Money and Poll Taxes: Coping With Our Crazy Democracy

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: The 2014 midterms are upon us, Rebecca Solnit says women’s issues are men’s issues, and “FOIA terrorist” Jason Leopold tells us about Michael Hayden’s finances.

Posted on Oct 31, 2014 READ MORE

Dark Money and Poll Taxes: Coping With Our Crazy Democracy

This week on Truthdig Radio in association with KPFK: The 2014 midterms are upon us, Rebecca Solnit says women’s issues are men’s issues, and “FOIA terrorist” Jason Leopold tells us about Michael Hayden’s finances.

Posted on Oct 31, 2014 WATCH & LISTEN

Timo Kuusela (CC-BY)

Putin Mulls Plan to Turn Off the Internet in Case of ‘Emergency’

The Guardian is reporting that Russian officials might take drastic measures in the event of public unrest.

Posted on Sep 19, 2014 READ MORE

Apple Watch Out

Posted on Sep 11, 2014 ENLARGE


The Apple Watch: A Right-Handed Exclusive

The highly anticipated and just announced Apple Watch will come in your choice of two sizes, three finishes and six bands, but all of them will expect you to be right-handed.

Posted on Sep 9, 2014 READ MORE


NSA Built a Search Engine to Share 850 Billion Records, The Intercept Reports

According to newly released documents from Edward Snowden’s treasure trove, the National Security Agency not only gave domestic law enforcement entities access to private data, it made it as easy as possible.

Posted on Aug 27, 2014 READ MORE


Students Who Take Notes With Laptops Learn Less, and the Reason May Surprise You

A few months ago, research published in the journal Psychological Science revealed that students who handwrite their notes learn better than those who use laptops, and the reason is not because the latter are busy checking Facebook.

Posted on Aug 27, 2014 READ MORE


The Guilt-Free Phone Made Specifically for Socially Conscious Buyers

Smartphones are amazing, but they’re also made by exploited workers using illicit materials that help foster war and add to global toxic pollution when we’re done with them in about two years.

Posted on Aug 26, 2014 READ MORE


The Best Phone Money Can Buy—For Now

The iPhone, by all accounts, will rule the fall. But the summer belongs to LG.

Posted on Aug 6, 2014 READ MORE


A Local Fight for the Future of the Internet

The front line in this fight is Chattanooga, Tenn., where officials at the city’s public electric utility, EPB, realized that smart-grid energy infrastructure could also provide consumers super-fast Internet speeds at competitive prices.

Posted on Jul 18, 2014 READ MORE

PiXXart /

Iran Sentences Facebook Protesters to 127 Years in Prison

Eight “youths” in Iran were sentenced to an average of almost 16 years in prison for speaking out against their government, state media and Sky News reported Monday.

Posted on Jul 14, 2014 READ MORE

Drone Swatting

Posted on Jul 11, 2014 ENLARGE


Is Your Car Compatible With Your Television?

We’re about to have a major setback. Machines that were never before concerned with software will speak to each other, and, unfortunately, they won’t have access to a translator.

Posted on Jun 30, 2014 READ MORE


United Supreme Court Defends Digital Privacy

The high court ruled unanimously Wednesday that law enforcement’s assumptions about privacy and mobile phones are flat wrong.

Posted on Jun 25, 2014 READ MORE


Amazon’s New Phone Is an Overpriced Bar Code Scanner

Amazon unveiled its first phone Wednesday. It has some innovative features, but its primary function seems to be getting people to buy more stuff from Amazon.

Posted on Jun 18, 2014 READ MORE

stocklight /

Al Gore’s Warnings About Inequality and Democracy

The former vice president recently told a tech industry conference when “95 percent of all the additional national income in the U.S., since the recovery began in ’09, goes to the top 1 percent, that’s not an Occupy Wall Street slogan, that’s a fact.”

Posted on Jun 13, 2014 READ MORE


FTC Sounds Privacy Alarm on Data Brokers, Asks Congress to Act

Ever heard of Acxiom or Corelogic? No? Chances are they’ve heard of you. According to a new 110-page report from the Federal Trade Commission, data brokers “collect and store a vast amount of data on almost every U.S. household and commercial transaction.”

Posted on May 28, 2014 READ MORE

Twin Design /

Europe Says Google Has to Delete Embarrassing Data

The European Union’s highest court issued a tough verdict Tuesday that could be a boon to privacy, but a loss to free access to information—and the business model of companies such as Google and Facebook.

Posted on May 13, 2014 READ MORE


Privacy Tools: Encrypt What You Can

Ever since Edward Snowden revealed the inner secrets of the NSA, he has been urging Americans to use encryption to protect themselves from rampant spying.

Posted on May 6, 2014 READ MORE

AP/Ahn Young-joon

Two Felons Could Force the Supreme Court to Protect Privacy in the Digital Age

The last thing we would expect from the Roberts court is a robust defense of civil liberties, but judging from the tenor of Tuesday’s oral argument, we could be in for some surprises.

Posted on Apr 29, 2014 READ MORE

Hattanas Kumchai /

Glassholes and Glasswipes

The nerds have come full circle, shedding their recently acquired soft fuzzy status as lovable underdogs to once again be reviled.

Posted on Apr 28, 2014 READ MORE


The Best Feature of This Phone Is Its Price

Samsung and HTC just announced their new flagship phones, and Apple is expected to drop the iPhone 6 sometime soon. Chinese upstart OnePlus is hoping to give all those devices a run for their money—literally.

Posted on Apr 23, 2014 READ MORE

Twin Design /

Netflix to Raise Prices for New Customers

The streaming video service announced it would raise prices by one or two dollars for new customers only, however existing subscribers will likely see their bills match newcomers at some point in the future.

Posted on Apr 21, 2014 READ MORE

NSA Said to Have Left Us Vulnerable to Attack in Order to Exploit Heartbleed

In violation of one of its primary missions, the National Security Agency has kept secret the biggest threat to Internet security in memory in order to exploit it, sources say.

Posted on Apr 11, 2014 READ MORE

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