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RainCaster

Profile Information

Gender: Male
Home country: USA
Current location: Left Coast
Member since: Mon Oct 10, 2016, 07:19 PM
Number of posts: 3,629

About Me

A Reformed Republican who has seen evil and shook its hand. (Nixon) He now spends his time trying to change the world for the better.

Journal Archives

"Fake News" can be a game, and it teaches us to become more discerning

One my my daily tech reads gave us this interesting article about gamifying memes and the trolling of social media. It states that after only playing such games for 15 minutes, the participants become more resilient to the BS that Russia's troll farms are spewing at us daily.


Half of the battle against disinformation campaigns is educating people about how they work. And that's why the Finnish public broadcasting company Yle—Finland's equivalent of the BBC—has created a game called Troll Factory. The game, which recently won the European Journalism Centre and Google News Initiative's Global Youth and News Media Prize for promoting media literacy, puts the player in the role of a disinformation operative working for an Internet Research Agency-like organization with an anti-immigrant agenda.

The gamification of education on disinformation campaigns has been shown to help build up a resistance to fake news in the past. The University of Cambridge conducted a study in 2018 using a browser game called "Bad News" and found that completing the 15-minute game increased "psychological resistance" to fake news on social media, reducing the perceived credibility of fake news headlines by an average of 21 percent across 15,000 participants.

Troll Factory takes Bad News' approach a step further by using real samples of memes, conspiracy theories, and fake news articles used in such campaigns that infect social media and heighten the polarization of public discourse around the world—and in the US and Western Europe in particular. With the increasing reliance on social media for news, Yle's interactive team sought to create more awareness of how weaponized social media has become and more understanding among social media users of how they could be drawn into unintentionally spreading false information.
...
The result can be somewhat eye-opening for those who haven't tracked disinformation campaigns. "People have described Troll Factory experience to be 'scary awful' but informative and enlightening," Koponen said, "something that's needed in order to illustrate the reality, motives, intentions and potential effects, of different forms of information operations."

Protecting Whistle-blowers from DFT and his minions

The costumes and voice tweaking done to those on the Masked Singer TV show would be a natural for an appearance before Congress.

For those who detest Facebook

True confession- I'm among them.

So the EU has decided that when the EU orders a take-down of any information, it must be done world wide and not just in the requesting country. OK- that seems like a simple thing to do and a very reasonable request. Except that FB has purposely designed their network to make this very difficult. Damn. I feel so sad for those arrogant crooks.

There's a shit-ton more at the link, along with the PDF of the ruling. Well worth looking at if you are involved in any way with a social network and it's design. You may have similar requirement soon.


EU nations can force Facebook to remove content worldwide, court rules
The ruling could let EU nations override other countries' own laws, critics say.

The ruling (PDF) stems from a case that began in Austria three years ago. A Facebook user posted comments about an Austrian politician, Eva Glawischnig-Piesczek, that Austrian courts found to be illegally defamatory. Glawischnig-Piesczek in 2016 wrote to Facebook Ireland, the company's EU headquarters, asking the company to delete the comments and limit access to them globally. Facebook refused, Glawischnig-Piesczek sued, and the results of the years of legal wrangling are out today.

A service is not liable for information it's hosting "if it has no knowledge of its illegal nature or if it acts expeditiously to remove or disable access" to the illegal content as soon as it becomes aware of it, the court said; the United States operates under a similar standard. The EU's directive on electronic commerce also "prohibits any requirement for the host provider," meaning a company such as Facebook, "to monitor generally information which it stores or to seek actively facts or circumstances indicating illegal activity," the court said.

FURTHER READING
Google wins case as court rules “right to be forgotten” is EU-only
But that directive does not preclude an EU member nation from ordering a service to remove or block access to content that is identical or equivalent to content that has been deemed unlawful in the past, the court ruled. Nations can require, the court said, the use of automated technologies and filters to make it happen. Crucially, the directive also does not prohibit EU member nations from requiring platforms to remove or block access to such information worldwide, "within the framework of the relevant international law."

The globe-spanning ruling is the opposite approach the court took less than two weeks ago in a different case, when it held that the so-called right to be forgotten under EU law does not require Google to make certain information inaccessible to the world beyond European borders.

Let's send DFT to Katmandu

I'm a long time Bob Seger fan, and I was listening to Silver Bullet today when Katmandu came on. I found this version on U-tub for all to appreciate:


What is Finland's policy on dealing with corrupt nation-states?

During DFT's tirade with the Reuters reporter ("You talkin' ta me?", he insisted that the reporter ask the Finnish president a question. I was really hoping he would ask a question similar to the one above.

While our press is getting a bit better at pushing back, they still have a long way to go, and they do not have to give any respect to the Tangerine Shart Cannon. He has been spewing nothing but hatred at the MSM, and he needs to feel their rather, not only in the printed pages, but in his personal interactions.

How the diplomatic pros lost Ukraine to Trump

A short, simple explanation of how DFT completely fucked up our relationship with a budding democracy. This is from the WaPo, which may be behind a paywall for some of you. Link added (sorry)


In a matter of months, President Trump and his personal lawyer, Rudolph W. Giuliani, have twisted U.S. policy in Ukraine to their personal ends, touching off turmoil inside the White House and State Department and weakening — perhaps critically — a bilateral relationship that is crucial to containing Russian aggression in Europe.

The story of Trump’s strongarming of Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky is first and foremost one of Trump’s abuse of his presidential power in pursuit of personal political gain. But it is also an epic example of how Trump has destroyed U.S. diplomacy in places around the world where, for years, it had worked smoothly and relatively effectively despite the growing partisan polarization in Washington.

As one of the relatively few U.S. journalists who has followed Ukraine closely over the years, I find that the saddest part of this story has been watching a once-cohesive community of U.S. diplomatic pros on Ukraine be crushed as it tried to contain and manage the hurricane-like intervention of Giuliani and Trump. The whistleblower’s complaint offers a partial picture of this unraveling, and I have heard more in several conversations with longtime sources.

Though Trump never had a positive view of Ukraine, the trouble really started with Giuliani, who has a record of working for and with the very Ukrainian actors that U.S. policy has aimed to marginalize: shady business executives and corrupt politicians with ties to Russia, organized crime or both.

Have you read the Whistle-blower's Complaint yet? You must!

Too many people say "no", but everyone should read it for themselves. This will take you 15 - 30 minutes to read, and this is truly historical in nature.

You will be conversing with many people who have strong opinions and yet have not read it for themselves. Let them know that they need to do their own research, and that they must begin by reading it unadorned and in its entirety.

If this is true, his goose is cooked.
Not only did DFT insist that a foreign government interfere with a coming US election, he also asked Ukraine to take credit for interfering in the 2016 election. This would only benefit Russia, not the US, not DFT, and certainly not Ukraine. Think about that for a minute--our Traitor in Chief is lobbying for one of our country's biggest enemies to another foreign power.

Irish funeral firm rents out four limousines to Trump for $1m

Yes, our Chief Dotard is a fine example of fiscal responsibility when the taxpayers are footing the bill.

They are, by all accounts, wheels to die for. JP Ward & Sons, an Irish funeral services home, rents out its fleet of Mercedes E-Class limousines not just to mourners but to anyone who wants to travel in style.

A killer price tag has not deterred the latest customer: the White House. It is so keen to use the vehicles for Donald Trump’s two-day visit to Ireland that it is spending nearly $1m (£788,000) of US taxpayers’ money to rent them.

The Trump administration paid the family-owned firm based in Bray, County Wicklow, $935,033 in four tranches, according to USASpending.gov, an official portal that records federal government spending.

The state department did not immediately respond to a request for confirmation that the outlay was to rent four vehicles, which would work out at $233,748 per vehicle.

The presidential entourage’s hotel bills have also drawn scrutiny. State department documents show US taxpayers have spent $1,223,230 on VIP accommodation at the InterContinental hotel on Park Lane in Mayfair, London.

DFT desecrates a sumo ring by not being barefoot...

He had to wear sandles to protect his bone spurs.

Why are we paying taxes to the IRS? They don't follow the law

Menuchin's denial of DFT's tax returns shows that there is no rule of law in this administration. There must be something that we the people can do that will send a firm message to our corrupt gummint. Would McTurtle listen up then?
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