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Pluralistic: 02 Aug 2021 – Pluralistic: Daily links from Cory Doctorow

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This work licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 license. That means you can use it any way you like, including commercially, provided that you attribute it to me, Cory Doctorow, and include a link to pluralistic.net.


Ex-Air Force intelligence analyst gets 45 months for leaking secrets about drone program in Afghanistan

FOX News

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what's clicking on Foxnews.com. A Tennessee man was sentenced Tuesday to 45 months in prison for leaking classified information about the U.S. drone program in Afghanistan while he was working as an Air Force intelligence analyst. Daniel Hale, 33, pleaded guilty in March to violating the Espionage Act by leaking top-secret documents to a reporter. Hale, who was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Alexandria, said his guilt over participating in lethal drone strikes in Afghanistan led him to leak government secrets.


Despite controversies and bans, facial recognition startups are flush with VC cash – TechCrunch

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If efforts by states and cities to pass privacy regulations curbing the use of facial recognition are anything to go by, you might fear the worst for the companies building the technology. But a recent influx of investor cash suggests the facial recognition startup sector is thriving, not suffering. Facial recognition is one of the most controversial and complex policy areas in play. The technology can be used to track where you go and what you do. It's used by public authorities and in private businesses like stores.


Responsible AI

Communications of the ACM

The high expectations of AI have triggered worldwide interest and concern, generating 400 policy documents on responsible AI. Intense discussions over the ethical issues lay a helpful foundation, preparing researchers, managers, policy makers, and educators for constructive discussions that will lead to clear recommendations for building the reliable, safe, and trustworthy systems6 that will be commercial success. This Viewpoint focuses on four themes that lead to 15 recommendations for moving forward. The four themes combine AI thinking with human-centered User Experience Design (UXD). Ethical discussions are a vital foundation, but raising the edifice of responsible AI requires design decisions to guide software engineering teams, business managers, industry leaders, and government policymakers.


Bumble dating app led FBI to Capitol riot suspect: DOJ

FOX News

Fox News congressional correspondent Jacqui Heinrich has the latest from Capitol Hill on'America Reports' The FBI was tipped off to a Texas man arrested Friday for allegedly assaulting police officers during the Capitol riot after messaging with a woman he met on the dating app Bumble in January, the Justice Department announced. Andrew Quentin Taake, 32, was charged with assaulting an officer, obstructing an official proceeding, and other offenses for his actions during the riot, which allegedly included pepper-spraying several officers and assaulting others with a whip-like weapon. The FBI received a tip from a woman he met on the online dating app, Bumble, on Jan. 9. Screenshots of their messages show that Taake sent the woman a selfie that was taken "about 30 minutes after being sprayed," allegedly telling the potential suitor that he was at the riot "from the very beginning." A woman who Andrew Quentin Taake matched with on Bumble tipped off the FBI about his alleged Capitol riot involvement. Taake allegedly flew to Washington, D.C., from Houston the day before the riot and returned home a few days later.


Using satellites and AI, space-based technology is shaping the future of firefighting

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Using satellites, drones and artificial intelligence, emerging technology is changing the way firefighting agencies and governments battle the ever-increasing threat of wildfires as hundreds of thousands of acres burn across the western United States. New programs are being developed by startups and research institutions to predict fire behavior, monitor drought and even detect fires when they first start. As climate change continues to increase the intensity and frequency of wildfires, these breakthroughs offer at least one tool in the growing arsenal of prevention and suppression strategies. "This is not to replace firefighting on the ground," said Ilkay Altintas, a computer scientist with the University of California, San Diego, who developed a fire map for the region. "The more science and data we can give firefighters and the public, the quicker we'll have solutions to combat and mitigate wildfires."


California Sues Gaming Giant Activision Blizzard Over Unequal Pay, Sexual Harassment

NPR Technology

A lawsuit filed by the state of California on Wednesday alleges sexual harassment, gender discrimination and violations of the state's equal pay law at the video game giant Activision Blizzard. A lawsuit filed by the state of California on Wednesday alleges sexual harassment, gender discrimination and violations of the state's equal pay law at the video game giant Activision Blizzard. The video game studio behind the hit franchises Call of Duty, World of Warcraft and Candy Crush is facing a civil lawsuit in California over allegations of gender discrimination, sexual harassment and potential violations of the state's equal pay law. A complaint, filed by the state Department of Fair Employment and Housing on Wednesday, alleges that Activision Blizzard Inc. "fostered a sexist culture" where women were paid less than men and subjected to ongoing sexual harassment including groping. Officials at the gaming company knew about the harassment and not only failed to stop it but retaliated against women who spoke up, the complaint also alleges.


AI legislation must address bias in algorithmic decision-making systems

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All the sessions from Transform 2021 are available on-demand now. In early June, border officials "quietly deployed" the mobile app CBP One at the U.S.-Mexico border to "streamline the processing" of asylum seekers. While the app will reduce manual data entry and speed up the process, it also relies on controversial facial recognition technologies and stores sensitive information on asylum seekers prior to their entry to the U.S. The issue here is not the use of artificial intelligence per se, but what it means in relation to the Biden administration's pre-election promise of civil rights in technology, including AI bias and data privacy. When the Democrats took control of both House and Senate in January, onlookers were optimistic that there was an appetite for a federal privacy bill and legislation to stem bias in algorithmic decision-making systems. This is long overdue, said Ben Winters, Equal Justice Works Fellow of the Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC), who works on matters related to AI and the criminal justice system.


'Gutfeld!' on CNN, Olympic Games

FOX News

'Gutfeld!' panel debates whether CNN will change their coverage This is a rush transcript from "Gutfeld!," This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated. I want to protect free speech. No, we want people to be protected from disinformation, to be protected from dying in this country, to be protected from people like Donald Trump who spread this information for -- who love to make sure that the division and the death continues. That was a rough weekend, and not just for Kat. But at least she kept her clothes on unlike our other guests, Jimmy Failla. But it was a far worse weekend for CNN. First let's go to our roly-poly guacamole gossip goalie. See how bad it got unreliable fart noises. Here's Michael Wolff delivering that smack to the hack. You know, you become part of -- one of the parts of the problem of the media. You know, you come on here and you -- and you have a, you know, a monopoly on truth. You know, you know exactly how things are supposed to be done. You know, you are why one of the reasons people can't stand the media. You should see the rest of the world, buddy. Can I hear that chuckle again? But if that was a heavyweight fight, and it is because, you know, Stelter, it would have been stopped in the first 25 seconds. It got worse, meaning better, lots better. STELTER: It's -- how -- so what should I do differently, Michael? WOLFF: You know, don't talk so much. Listen more, you know, people have genuine problems with the media. The media doesn't get the story right.


Consumer Protection and AI--7 Expert Tips To Stay Out Of Trouble

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As more and more companies adopt AI, a question arises--can the federal government keep up with all the changes from a regulatory perspective? In some cases, the federal government is behind (see Why Are Technology Companies Quitting Facial Recognition?). In a recent blog post, the FTC has warned companies that they have sufficient laws to enforce truth, fairness, and equity when enforcing the developers and users of AI. The FTC essentially says that companies need to hold themselves accountable for their AI, or the FTC will take enforcement action against them. The FTC's primary focus is on consumer protection.