KRWG

Technology

Please note:  Sometimes, NPR publishes headlines before the story and/or audio is ready; check back for content later if this occurs.  We also publish national/world news on our home page.

Conspiracy theorist Alex Jones has temporarily lost some Twitter privileges over breaking the site's rules against abusive behavior. Last week, the company was a notable exception after a wave of other major tech companies banned Jones and his main channels.

The penalties to Alex Jones' personal account, @RealAlexJones, are for one week. They do not include the Twitter page for his website Infowars, which posted screenshots of the notice that Twitter apparently sent Jones.

Here’s a new phrase for you: “The Googlification of the classroom.” Tech reporter Natasha Singer covered it for The New York Times in 2017.

She wrote that Chicago Public Schools, the third-largest school district in the country has been at the forefront of introducing the tech giant’s low-cost and free tools into the classroom.

Google bypassed administrators and school boards, reaching out directly to educators, she wrote, and it raises the question of whether our public schools should “turn out knowledgeable citizens or skilled workers.”

Tinder's co-founders, along with eight other current and former executives, have slapped the popular dating app's owners with a massive lawsuit. In the suit filed Tuesday in New York, the Tinder employees past and present say the companies that own the app deliberately undervalued it to swindle them out of the money they were owed.

In Paris, authorities are taking an unusual approach to combat the scourge of public urination: Make urination even more public.

The city is experimenting with completely exposed, eco-friendly urinals.

The devices are called "Uritrottoir," which combines the words for urinal and pavement. They're not at all subtle. They're bright red and in heavily trafficked areas — for example, directly next to the Seine near the Notre Dame Cathedral.

And if there's any confusion, a large white and red sign with a red arrow and a cartoon of a man peeing probably clears it up.

Updated at 5:06 p.m. ET

When Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced last week that he was considering ending the automaker's 8-year run as a publicly traded company, he indicated that he had found the money to do it.

"Am considering taking Tesla private at $420. Funding secured," Musk tweeted.

For years, tech employees of companies in Silicon Valley have enjoyed free meals around the clock. That's changing — at least in Mountain View, Calif., where the city is banning the social media giant Facebook from offering free food in its newest office building.

In the fall of 2016, as reports of Russian-backed hacking of state election systems were surfacing, Georgia's Secretary of State, Brian Kemp, rejected federal offers of help to secure his state's voting systems.

"The question remains whether the federal government will subvert the Constitution to achieve the goal of federalizing elections under the guise of security," Kemp told a technology website.

It's a sunny day, and a woman walks past a young man on the street. He mutters an obscene catcall. In the video, the woman smiles and says, "Thank you!" But then, the camera pans to her fantasy. What she really wishes she could do: the video goes on to show her in her imagination, pulling out a knife and stabbing him.

WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange is "seriously considering" a request to testify in person before the U.S. Senate intelligence committee about Russian interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential election, according to a statement from his lawyer.

Assange has been holed up at Ecuador's embassy in London since 2012, in part over fears that he could be extradited to the U.S. and potentially face trial over leaking massive troves of documents.

The New York City Council passed legislation Wednesday to temporarily halt new licenses of for-hire vehicles like those of Uber and Lyft, in the first action by a major U.S. city to cap the growth of the ride-hailing services.

The city council passed a package of bills to regulate the ride-hailing industry, including setting a one-year cap on the number of Uber and Lyft cars on the streets to study effects on traffic congestion, and allowing city regulators to set a minimum pay rate for drivers.

Is Video Game Addiction A Thing?

Aug 8, 2018

There’s been a lot of concern lately, by parents especially, about video game addiction.

The World Health Organization has added the behavioral condition “gaming disorder” to their International Statistical Classification of Diseases and Related Health Problems.

In 2013, the American Psychological Association (APA) designated gaming disorder as “a condition for further study.” But even that provoked pushback.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey has explained in a series of tweets why his platform has not suspended conspiracy theorist Alex Jones or his website Infowars. Earlier this week, tech companies YouTube, Apple, Facebook and Spotify banned main content outlets in what Jones described as a "purge."

"He hasn't violated our rules. We'll enforce if he does," Dorsey tweeted. In an apparent reference to other tech companies, he added that Twitter would not "succumb and simply react to outside pressure."

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

ARI SHAPIRO, HOST:

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NOEL KING, HOST:

BuzzFeed host Tracy Clayton recently asked her Twitter followers to share a picture that they had uploaded to social media — one in which they looked great, but were actually going through a very difficult time.

The tweet went viral. An outpouring of smiling snapshots, accompanied with heart-wrenching behind-the-scenes anecdotes.

Mankaprr Conteh is one of the hundreds who responded. She remembers when the picture she shared was taken, two years ago, when she was 22. She was in the Caribbean.

YouTube, Apple and Facebook have removed main outlets for conspiracy theorist Alex Jones and his Infowars website, citing repeated violations of policies against hate speech and glorifying violence. Infowars responded by accusing the companies of censorship.

The streaming service Spotify also expanded a ban imposed last week on some of Jones' content, saying Monday that "The Alex Jones Show has lost access to the Spotify platform."

On Sunday, Apple and iTunes deleted five podcasts related to Infowars and Jones. The other bans then piled up in quick succession.

For years, Australia has employed a controversial policy for migrants coming by sea without proper documents for entry: It sends them to offshore holding facilities.

The law was passed in 2013, during a time when many refugees and migrants were attempting to cross the ocean from Indonesia to reach Australia. Many died or went missing en route. Those caught by Australian authorities were transferred to centers on Australia's Christmas Island, the island nation of Nauru and Manus Island, which is part of Papua New Guinea.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

LULU GARCIA-NAVARRO, HOST:

Five years ago, when George Zimmerman was acquitted in the shooting death of an unarmed 17-year-old named Trayvon Martin, the hashtag #BlackLivesMatter lit up the social media universe and ignited powerful dialogue around racial injustice and police brutality.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Midterm elections are less than a hundred days away. Russia is expected to try to interfere with them, as it did in 2016. The White House held a briefing on Thursday to say they're on it. Here's Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats.

The ACLU On Facebook's Fake Page Removals

Aug 4, 2018

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

Amazon says it removed several items of racist propaganda from its store in response to questions from a Democratic lawmaker — though white supremacist literature and other propaganda items remain widely available on the site.

After criticism from advocacy groups and Minnesota Democratic Rep. Keith Ellison about the availability of Nazi-themed toys and baby onesies with pictures of burning crosses on Amazon's website, the company said this week that it had removed several items and banned sellers who had violated its policies.

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

The popular streaming service Spotify has pulled some content posted by the prominent conspiracy theorist Alex Jones, founder of the website Infowars.

Spotify did not specify which episodes had been deleted, or how many in total it had removed from its service.

Apple became the first private-sector company in history to be worth $1 trillion, after its share price reached an all-time high above $207 on Thursday.

The share price jumped by more than 8 percent this week after Apple reported impressive quarterly earnings on Tuesday, driven largely by strong sales for high-priced iPhones. In a call with investors, CEO Tim Cook also touted growth in other areas such as smart home products, wearable and services like the App Store and Apple Pay.

Google is testing a mobile version of its search engine that will adhere to the Chinese government's censorship demands, including the blocking of certain websites and search terms, according to multiple reports.

China's government goes to great lengths to control its citizens' access to information on the Internet, creating what's been dubbed the "Great Firewall."

Copyright 2018 NPR. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NOEL KING, HOST:

As the cameras rolled on President Trump's campaign rally for GOP Rep. Ron DeSantis in Florida on Tuesday night, a peculiar sign appeared in view.

"We are Q."

Journalists at the event noted multiple attendees carrying signs and wearing T-shirts emblazoned with the name "QAnon."

Senate intelligence committee Chairman Richard Burr, R-N.C., summed up how lawmakers and Trump administration officials have failed to acknowledge the dangerous problem of foreign influence operations in America on Wednesday, with a description of an Internet meme.

Pages