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Politics on dating apps are thornier than ever now that Trump is gone

Mashable

After 26-year-old Brandon Fellows stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, he told Bloomberg News he had no regrets. Instead, he boasted that his Bumble profile was "blowing up." All the while, women were actively trying to locate the insurrectionists on dating apps. Bumble removed its political filter amid the chaos, only to reinstate it a day later after users complained. Politics is personal, and that's been true on dating apps for awhile -- but as the global health crisis collided with a heated election and an attempted coup, it shifted things even further and now politics on dating apps are thornier than ever.


Democrats ask Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to rework their suggestion algorithms

Engadget

A group of more than 30 democratic lawmakers led by Representatives Tom Malinowski (D-NJ) and Anna G. Eshoo (D-CA) are calling on Facebook, Twitter and YouTube to make substantive changes to their recommendation algorithms. In three separate letters addressed to the CEOs of those companies, the group makes a direct link to the January 6th US Capitol attack and the part those platforms played in radicalizing the individuals who took part in the uprising. "On Wednesday, January 6th the United States Capitol was attacked by a violent, insurrectionist mob radicalized in part in a digital echo chamber that your company designed, built and maintained," the letter addressed to Google and YouTube CEOs Sundar Pichai and Susan Wojcicki says. A letter from some Congress members to Google CEO Sundar Pichai and YouTube CEO Susan Wojcicki flexes research on how YouTube's algorithms have promoted conspiracy theories and political extremism. Citing the Capitol attacks, they request changes to its recommendations systems.


Bumble dating app unblocks politics filter after complaints from users

FOX News

Fox News Flash top headlines are here. Check out what's clicking on Foxnews.com. Dating is about to get political again. After briefly disabling the feature, Bumble is reportedly allowing users to once again filter matches based on their political stance. This option was temporarily disabled following the riot at the U.S. Capitol "to prevent misuse," Bumble previously said.


Bumble disabled its politics filter after it was used to out Capitol rioters

Engadget

The dating app Bumble has disabled its politics filter after it was supposedly used to reveal the identities of Capitol rioters, Mashable has reported. Bumble support posted on Twitter that it "temporarily removed our politics filter to prevent misuse," adding that it "prohibits any content that promotes terrorism or racial hatred." Bumble has promised in another tweet that it will "be reinstated in the future." It also stated that it has removed users confirmed as participants in the US Capitol attack. We've temporarily removed our politics filter to prevent misuse.


How Joe Biden Could Help Internet Companies Moderate Harmful Content

The New Yorker

After the buyer used the weapon to kill his estranged wife and two others, the site successfully invoked Section 230 to avoid liability. More recently, Grindr, a dating app, took cover behind Section 230 when Matthew Herrick, an actor in New York, sued the site as a result of false profiles that were created by an ex-boyfriend. The profiles, which included Herrick's home and work addresses, suggested that Herrick had rape fantasies, and that any resistance he put up was part of the fantasy. As a consequence, hundreds of men showed up at his apartment door or at his workplace, at all hours, month after month, forcibly demanding sex. "You look at that law, and it seems very narrow," Herrick's lawyer, Carrie Goldberg, told me.


Google antitrust: Just how much do you actually use it? Way more than you think

USATODAY - Tech Top Stories

Google's influence in our lives is overwhelming, which is perhaps one of the reasons the Department of Justice and several state attorney generals banded together to file an anti-trust lawsuit against the company. But just how wide is Google's reach? We decided to take a look, and the results may surprise you. Start with the fact that Google ads are all over the Internet, and despite the initial stated goal of "organizing the world's information," the Alphabet unit is designed to have more ads appear, to keep the earnings up. In its most recent earnings, Alphabet reported $38.30 billion for Google.


Mozilla wants to understand your weird YouTube recommendations

ZDNet

From cute cat videos to sourdough bread recipes: sometimes, it feels like the algorithm behind YouTube's "Up Next" section knows the user better than the user knows themselves. Often, that same algorithm leads the viewer down a rabbit hole. How many times have you spent countless hours clicking through the next suggested video, each time promising yourself that this one would be the last one? The scenario gets thorny when the system somehow steers the user towards conspiracy theory videos and other forms of extreme content, as some have complained. To get an idea of how often this happens and how, the non-profit Mozilla Foundation has launched a new browser extension that lets users take action when they are recommended videos on YouTube that they then wish they hadn't ended up watching.


U.S. Approves Sale of Scrutinized Chinese App

WSJ.com: WSJD - Technology

U.S. national security officials have approved an investor group's purchase of gay-dating app Grindr that is being sold by a Chinese company after the Trump administration raised concerns about the potential theft of Americans' personal data. In investor documents released Friday, China's Beijing Kunlun Tech Co. said that the buyer has secured approval from the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States, a panel of national security experts who ordered that Beijing Kunlun Tech sell its ownership last year.


Health State Estimation

arXiv.org Artificial Intelligence

Life's most valuable asset is health. Continuously understanding the state of our health and modeling how it evolves is essential if we wish to improve it. Given the opportunity that people live with more data about their life today than any other time in history, the challenge rests in interweaving this data with the growing body of knowledge to compute and model the health state of an individual continually. This dissertation presents an approach to build a personal model and dynamically estimate the health state of an individual by fusing multi-modal data and domain knowledge. The system is stitched together from four essential abstraction elements: 1. the events in our life, 2. the layers of our biological systems (from molecular to an organism), 3. the functional utilities that arise from biological underpinnings, and 4. how we interact with these utilities in the reality of daily life. Connecting these four elements via graph network blocks forms the backbone by which we instantiate a digital twin of an individual. Edges and nodes in this graph structure are then regularly updated with learning techniques as data is continuously digested. Experiments demonstrate the use of dense and heterogeneous real-world data from a variety of personal and environmental sensors to monitor individual cardiovascular health state. State estimation and individual modeling is the fundamental basis to depart from disease-oriented approaches to a total health continuum paradigm. Precision in predicting health requires understanding state trajectory. By encasing this estimation within a navigational approach, a systematic guidance framework can plan actions to transition a current state towards a desired one. This work concludes by presenting this framework of combining the health state and personal graph model to perpetually plan and assist us in living life towards our goals.


Tinder tells users coronavirus safety is 'more important' than dating

Daily Mail - Science & tech

Tinder has posted a warning for its users telling them that coronavirus safety is'more important' than dating and urging them to wash their hands frequently. The dating app also encourages its singletons to carry hand sanitiser, avoid touching their face and'maintain social distance' when out in public. The warning says: 'Tinder is a great place to meet new people. While we want you to continue to have fun, protecting yourself from the coronavirus is more important'. It appears as a pop up while users are flipping between potential matches to warn of the dangers of the potentially deadly virus now called COVID-19. The pop-up warning also includes a link to the latest advice and information from the World Health Organisation (WHO) website.