YouTube is changing its algorithms to stop recommending conspiracies

Washington Post - Technology News

YouTube said Friday it is retooling its recommendation algorithm that suggests new videos to users in order to prevent promoting conspiracies and false information, reflecting a growing willingness to quell misinformation on the world's largest video platform after several public missteps. In a blog post that YouTube plans to publish Friday, the company said that it was taking a "closer look" at how it can reduce the spread of content that "comes close to -- but doesn't quite cross the line" of violating its rules. YouTube has been criticized for directing users to conspiracies and false content when they begin watching legitimate news. The change to the company's recommendation algorithms is the result of a six-month-long technical effort. It will be small at first -- YouTube said it would apply to less than 1 percent of the content of the site -- and affects only English-language videos, meaning that much unwanted content will still slip through the cracks.

Do L.A. Unified's daily random searches keep students safe, or do they go too far?

Los Angeles Times

L.A. Unified requires daily random searches for weapons using metal-detector wands at all of its middle and high school campuses, including Hamilton High. L.A. Unified requires daily random searches for weapons using metal-detector wands at all of its middle and high school campuses, including Hamilton High. Kevin Castillo was in his freshman year at Hamilton High School when administrators carrying hand-held metal detectors interrupted his English class to conduct a random search. They asked a student to pick a number between 1 and 10. The student chose 7, so every seventh person in the class had to gather up belongings and step out of the classroom.

Boy Held After Apparent School Shooting Joke Involving Siri

U.S. News

Authorities say a 13-year-old northwestern Indiana boy is charged with intimidation after telling Apple's digital assistant Siri he planned a school shooting and posting an iPhone screenshot of the response on social media as an apparent joke.

Talks begin to rewrite rules protecting students from fraud

FOX News

Education Department officials opened formal negotiations on Monday to rewrite federal rules meant to protect students from fraud by colleges and universities. The talks with university representative and student advocates are taking place as the department faces criticism for delaying consideration of tens of thousands of loan forgiveness claims from students who say they were defrauded by for-profit colleges. The 1994 rule, known as borrower defense, allowed loan forgiveness if it was determined that the college had deceived them. But the rule was rarely used until the demise of Corinthian and ITT Tech for-profit chains several years ago, when thousands of students flooded the department with requests to cancel their loans. In 2016, the Obama administration passed revisions to the rule, which clarified the process and added protections for students.

Schools are using AI to track what students write on their computers


Over 50 million k-12 students will go back to school in the US this month. For many of them using a school computer, every word they type will be tracked. Under the Children's Internet Protection Act (CIPA), any US school that receives federal funding is required to have an internet-safety policy. As school-issued tablets and Chromebook laptops become more commonplace, schools must install technological guardrails to keep their students safe. For some, this simply means blocking inappropriate websites.