Daily Archives: April 6, 2018

Today’s Holiday: Chakri Day

Today’s Holiday:
Chakri Day

Chakri Day is a national holiday in Thailand to commemorate the enthronement of Rama I, who founded the Chakri Dynasty in 1782. He was born Chao Phraya Chakri in 1737 and had become Thailand’s leading general when a palace coup took place in Thon Buri. The dynasty he established has headed the country to this day, although the end of absolute monarchy came in 1932. The king was given the title Rama after his death. Ceremonies on April 6 honor his deeds and the founding of Bangkok as the capital. More…: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Today’s Birthday: Bison Dele (1969)

Today’s Birthday:
Bison Dele (1969)

Dele was a professional basketball player who disappeared at sea in 2002 and is believed to have been killed by his brother. Three years earlier, at age 30 and arguably at the peak of his career, Dele opted out of a $36 million contract and retired from the National Basketball Association. In 2002, he set sail on the South Pacific Ocean with his girlfriend, the boat’s captain, and his brother—the only one ever seen or heard from again. How did his brother draw further suspicion after his return? More…: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

This Day in History: Petrarch Falls in Love (1327)

This Day in History:
Petrarch Falls in Love (1327)

Petrarch claimed to have first laid eyes on his beloved Laura, who was to inspire his great vernacular love lyrics, at the church of Sainte-Claire d’Avignon on Good Friday 1327. Over the next 20 years, the Italian humanist poet wrote hundreds of sonnets and odes about the lovely Laura, with whom he may never have conversed even once. Petrarch revealed little about the object of his chaste love, and her true identity has been the source of much debate. Who or what are some potential candidates? More…: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Quote of the Day: H.G. Wells

Quote of the Day:
H.G. Wells

Very simple was my explanation, and plausible enough—as most wrong theories are!

More…: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Idiom of the Day: marry into money

Article of the Day:
Cueva de las Manos

Spanish for “Cave of the Hands,” Cueva de las Manos is an Argentinean cave famed for the paintings of hands—along with depictions of humans, animals, hunting scenes, and geometric shapes—that are believed to have been made thousands of years ago by the region’s indigenous inhabitants. Based on the size of the hands, it is speculated that teenage boys stenciled them on the wall of the cave to mark their advancement into manhood. Most of the paintings are of left hands, suggesting what? More…: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Idiom of the Day: marry into money

Idiom of the Day:
marry into money

To become wealthy or financially secure by marrying someone who is wealthy or has a wealthy family. Watch the video…: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Word of the Day: greave

Word of the Day:

Definition: (noun) Armor plate that protects legs below the knee.
Synonyms: jambeau
Usage: They then stripped him of a jacket that he wore over his armor, and they would have stripped off his stockings if his greaves had not prevented them.: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.tfd.mobile.TfdSearch

Opinion | How Democracy Became the Enemy – The New York Times

CreditAdam Maida



How Democracy Became the Enemy
In Hungary and Poland, the liberal West used to be the promised land. Not anymore.

Roger Cohen
By Roger Cohen
Mr. Cohen is an opinion columnist. He wrote this article after a recent visit to Poland and Hungary.
April 6, 2018
Hungary had a horrendous 20th century of lost territory and freedom, but Budapest, a handsome city set on a broad sweep of the Danube, suggests its wounds have healed. Trams hum along boulevards lined with elegant cafes and clogged with the cars German companies manufacture here. The country has escaped what Milan Kundera, the Czech writer, called the “kidnapped West,” the great swath of Europe yielded to the Soviet empire after World War II, and has returned to the Western family.

Or so it seems, until you notice the posters of a smiling Hungarian-American Jew, his arms around opposition politicians who brandish wire-cutters and have cut through a fence.
Show Full Article

Related Coverage
OpinionThe Editorial Board
Viktor Orban’s Perversion of Democracy in Hungary
April 5, 2018
How Viktor Orban Bends Hungarian Society to His Will
March 27, 2018
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Facebook Admits Mark Zuckerblerg and Top Execs Have Deleted Their Sent Messages Remotely


Facebook Admits Mark Zuckerberg and Top Execs Have Deleted Their Sent Messages Remotely

Matt Novak
Today 7:30am

Photo: AP
Have you ever sent an email or text that you wish you could take back and delete forever? That’s not possible on the open web. But we now know that Mark Zuckerberg has the power to reach into every single Facebook inbox and delete messages that he’s sent. Zuck and other executives at Facebook have reportedly used that power multiple times.

The practice only came to light when Facebook users started to examine the information being stored by the social media company using the Download Your Information tool. According to Techcrunch, some people who have exchanged Facebook messages with Mark Zuckerberg have noticed that their old messages from Zuckerberg were gone.


Messenger has a feature that allows users to send messages that delete automatically, but that was only introduced in 2016. Users report that messages with Zuckerberg from as far back as 2010 have been deleted remotely, leaving only the recipient’s side of the conversation.

But it wasn’t just Zuckerberg who was deleting his sent messages. A Facebook statement makes it clear that multiple executives at the company have probably done this.

From Facebook (emphasis mine):

After Sony Pictures’ emails were hacked in 2014 we made a number of changes to protect our executives’ communications. These included limiting the retention period for Mark’s messages in Messenger. We did so in full compliance with our legal obligations to preserve messages.
Bringing up the Sony hack might elicit some sympathy for this idea that Facebook executives should be able to delete communications they have with outside parties. But no one outside of Facebook’s top brass have this luxury, as far as we know. And even if it’s not illegal, it seems like an enormous betrayal of reasonable user expectations about how online communities should work.

Again, we’ve all sent an email or message that we regretted. But once it’s in the hands of the recipient, that person has control over the message like you would a hand-written letter on paper. The sender doesn’t get to take it back with just a click. Or, at least, they shouldn’t be able to do that according to established norms.

All of this news comes as Facebook faces intense scrutiny from both the public and governments around the world over its mishandling of user data. It was revealed in March that the private data of 50 million Facebook users was given to Cambridge Analytica, a company that used that information for targeted advertising during the 2016 presidential election. Facebook has since admitted that it was probably more like 87 million people and that every single user has likely had their public profiles scraped.

Zuckerberg is scheduled to testify in front of two Congressional committees next week. The Facebook CEO will be in front of the Senate Judiciary and Commerce Committees on Tuesday, April 10th and then visiting the House Energy and Commerce Committee on Wednesday the 11th. Zuckerberg has declined to speak in front of the UK House of Commons despite repeated requests for him to travel to London.

Facebook’s Sheryl Sandberg gave multiple high-profile interviews yesterday to media outlets like Bloomberg and NBC News. In an interview with NPR, Sandberg blamed the company’s failures to protect the privacy of its users on idealism.

“We really believed in social experiences. We really believed in protecting privacy. But we were way too idealistic. We did not think enough about the abuse cases,” Sandberg told NPR.

We still have a lot of questions about Facebook’s practice of remotely deleting the communications of its executives. How many people at Facebook have the ability to delete their sent messages? Is this being done automatically or on a case-by-case basis? We’ve reached out to Facebook for answers and will provide an update if we get any.

And if you have any evidence that Zuckerberg or other Facebook executives have been tampering with your inbox, drop us a line: novak@gizmodo.com.


Update, 12:29pm: In a strange statement to Techcruch, Facebook now says that it’s thinking about rolling out an “unsend” feature to all its users. Facebook still hasn’t responded to Gizmodo’s questions about how many people at Facebook have been deleting their sent messages.

How many Facebook employees have been scrubbing their messages remotely and why? We’d love some answers. Give us a ring, guys. You know our number. Obviously.


Facebook Just Made a Shocking Admission, and We’re All Too Exhausted to Notice
Facebook’s Fact-Checkers Sound Like They’re Miserable [Updated]
Good News, We’re Getting Two Congressional Hearings With Mark Zuckerberg for the Price of One
Now Facebook Says It Shared the Data of ‘Up to 87 Million’ Users with Cambridge Analytica
Facebook Just Updated Its Terms and Data Policy—Good Luck Understanding It
Mark Zuckerberg: Boy That EU Privacy Law Is Great, Just You Know, Only in the EU
Matt Novak
Matt Novak is the editor of Gizmodo’s Paleofuture blog

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Facebook’s facial recognition violates user privacy, watchdog groups plan to tell FTC


Facebook’s facial recognition violates user privacy, watchdog groups plan to tell FTC


Mike Snider, USA TODAY
36 seconds ago
Already under siege over loose privacy controls and Russian manipulation, Facebook is about to be challenged on another issue: facial recognition.

The Electronic Privacy Information Center and several other consumer groups plan Friday to file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission asking for an investigation into the network’s use of facial recognition technology.

Consumer privacy groups are filing a complaint with the FTC that Facebook is violating a privacy decree by failing to get consent from users before it scans their photos to identify them.
Facebook for years has used the technology to help users in tagging photos, but it has failed to gain proper consent for linking biometric markers with individual users, the technology watchdog groups say.
More: Facebook now thinks 87 million had data shared with Cambridge Analytica

The social network has increased its use of facial recognition technology. “The problem is that the people Facebook is trying to ‘tag’ did not consent to being identified,” says EPIC president Marc Rotenberg.
Facebook also “routinely makes misrepresentations to induce consumers to adopt wider and more pervasive uses of facial recognition technology,” they allege in a draft copy of the complaint given to USA TODAY.
Those processes not only represent privacy concerns that the FTC should look into, the groups say, but also could be illegal because Facebook has to maintain certain privacy standards under a 2011 agreement with the FTC. “We think they are violating that consent order,” Rotenberg said.
Also noted in the complaint: Facebook faces a class action suit in federal court in which Illinois residents charge that the social network’s photo scanning measures violate users privacy.

Facebook says that when someone has their setting turned off, it doesn’t use the technology to identify them in photos.
“Our face recognition technology helps people manage their identity on Facebook and makes our features work better for people who are visually impaired,” said Rob Sherman, Facebook Deputy Chief Privacy Officer, in a statement.
It also uses facial identification to allow users to tag people more easily and to let them know if they’ve appeared in other people’s photos or videos.
Facebook is not wanting for critics recently. The FTC is already investigating the company into whether it improperly shared data with political targeting firm Cambridge Analytica. The social network disclosed last month that Cambridge Analytica had obtained personal information from hundreds of thousands of users who had downloaded a personality profile app.
The app’s developer also gathered information on users’ friends and, Facebook said Wednesday, as many as 87 million people, mostly in the U.S., may have had their data improperly shared with Cambridge Analytica.
The U.K.-based Cambridge Analytica, which assisted Donald Trump’s successful presidential campaign, has denied any improper use of Facebook data during the election campaign.
Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg is also scheduled to appear next week before Congress to discuss the social network’s data privacy security measures.
Also earlier this week, Facebook said it had removed more Facebook accounts and pages — and Instagram accounts — linked to the Internet Research Agency. That Russian troll farm was charged with conspiracy and other crimes in an indictment issued in February by special counsel Robert Mueller.
In recent days, Zuckerberg has been conciliatory and spent nearly an hour talking with journalists on a conference call Wednesday. “We have to make ensure that all of those developers protect people’s information, too,” he said. “It’s not enough to have rules requiring they protect the information and it’s not enough to believe them when they tell us they are protecting information. … We actually have to ensure that everyone in our ecosystem protects people’s information.”
In 2011, EPIC, the Center for Digital Democracy, Consumer Watchdog and the Privacy Rights Clearinghouse filed a complaint with the FTC charging that Facebook’s collection and use of biometric data was occurring without consent of users.
As Facebook’s facial recognition technology advanced, its identification of persons in photos — who might not even know a photo was taken of them — represents privacy problems and a violation of the company’s agreement to get users’ consent, the groups say. “The scanning of facial images without express, affirmative consent is unlawful and must be enjoined,” the groups say in the complaint.
More: Facebook’s FTC probe rocked the stock. But will anything rein in Facebook?
More: Facebook CEO Zuckerberg to testify before Congress
Follow USA TODAY reporter Mike Snider on Twitter: @MikeSnider.
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