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BeckyDem's Journal
BeckyDem's Journal
June 5, 2023

FTC Says Ring Employees Illegally Surveilled Customers, Failed to Stop Hackers from Taking Control

( FTC Says Ring Employees Illegally Surveilled Customers, Failed to Stop Hackers from Taking Control of Users' Cameras )

Under proposed FTC order, Ring will be prohibited from profiting from unlawfully accessing consumers videos, pay $5.8 million in consumer refunds

May 31, 2023

The Federal Trade Commission charged home security camera company Ring with compromising its customers’ privacy by allowing any employee or contractor to access consumers’ private videos and by failing to implement basic privacy and security protections, enabling hackers to take control of consumers’ accounts, cameras, and videos.

Under a proposed order, which must be approved by a federal court before it can go into effect, Ring will be required to delete data products such as data, models, and algorithms derived from videos it unlawfully reviewed. It also will be required to implement a privacy and security program with novel safeguards on human review of videos as well as other stringent security controls, such as multi-factor authentication for both employee and customer accounts.

“Ring’s disregard for privacy and security exposed consumers to spying and harassment,” said Samuel Levine, Director of the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection. “The FTC’s order makes clear that putting profit over privacy doesn’t pay.”

California-based Ring LLC, which was purchased by Amazon in February 2018, sells internet-connected, video-enabled home security cameras, doorbells, and related accessories and services. The company has marketed its products as offering greater home security and providing its users with peace of mind. For example, in promoting its indoor security cameras, which can be placed in individual rooms, Ring touts the ability of purchasers to “See your home. Away from home” alongside a picture of a Ring camera monitoring a child’s bedroom.


( Sleazeballs...ugh. )

June 5, 2023

Who dies, who pays: Different standards of justice for a limo crash and an opioid epidemic

By Daily News Editorial Board
New York Daily News

Jun 05, 2023 at 4:00 am

Compare and contrast, please.

Wednesday in Upstate New York, Nauman Hussain was sentenced to 5-15 years in prison for his role in the October 2018 deaths of 20 people after the brakes of an enormous stretch limousine failed. Hussain wasn’t driving the car. Rather, he rented out the vehicle — and a jury found evidence beyond a reasonable doubt that before doing so, he failed to ensure it was safe to drive. For that, he was convicted of 20 counts of second-degree manslaughter.

In Manhattan Tuesday, the Second Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that members of the Sackler family, the billionaires who own Purdue Pharma, will get full immunity from all civil lawsuits related to the mass dissemination of powerful pain drugs that have addicted millions and killed thousands. (Though Purdue Pharma has twice pleaded guilty to criminal charges, the Sacklers themselves have never been charged.) The ruling, the culmination of years of legal wrangling, shields the family atop Purdue Pharma and paves the path for the company’s bankruptcy restructuring in exchange for $6 billion in Sackler money that will go to help address the epidemic their company helped fuel.

The cash is no small sum, and will help people in desperate need across America, including here in New York, where opioid deaths have risen from about 1,000 in 2010 to more than 4,000 today. Nationally, opioid deaths now number more than 80,000 per year. Addicted people need counseling, effective medication-based treatment and a range of other services so they don’t wind up part of rising death counts.


( Hideous standards of justice. )

May 25, 2023

Some Alabama conservatives say textbooks 'indoctrinate' students: 'Too much Black history'

Updated: May. 23, 2023, 8:36 a.m.|Published: May. 23, 2023, 8:35 a.m.

By Jemma StephensonAlabama Reflector
Alabama may be a conservative state. But conservative activists still insist the textbooks here are too left-wing.

Earlier this year, the State Board of Education approved English Language Arts textbooks for kindergarten through third grade after a public hearing where critics suggested the books had too much Black history and multicultural stories.

These books had already been delayed after they were originally meant to be adopted in 2022.
Melissa Gates, who had identified herself as a member of Eagle Forum, said the books, called the Amplify Core Knowledge Language Arts, would “indoctrinate our children with DEI [Diversity Equity and Inclusion], SEL [Social Emotional Learning], woke agenda and grooming our little ones.”

( No comment necessary. )

May 24, 2023

Harlan Crow refuses to cooperate with Democrats' inquiry on Clarence Thomas

Martin Pengelly

Tue 23 May 2023 16.34 EDT

Lawyers for Harlan Crow, the rightwing billionaire whose friendship with and gifts to the conservative supreme court justice Clarence Thomas are the focus of swirling scandal, have rejected Senate Democrats’ request for answers about the relationship.

In a letter first reported by Bloomberg News on Tuesday, lawyers for Crow rejected a request from Dick Durbin, the Illinois Democrat who chairs the Senate judiciary committee, for a list of gifts to Thomas.

Durbin’s committee, the letter said, had not “identified a valid legislative purpose for its investigation and is not authorised to conduct an ethics investigation of a supreme court justice”.


Crow said he never discussed politics or business before the court with Thomas or his wife, the far-right activist Ginni Thomas. ( lol )


( Scum of the earth. )

May 24, 2023

Mothers wanted to watch horrific footage of their children escaping the Robb Elementary massacre.

Mothers wanted to watch horrific footage of their children escaping the Robb Elementary massacre. Here’s why we showed them. And why they want others to see

Posted: May 21, 2023 11:09 AM CDT
Updated: May 21, 2023 10:20 PM CDT

By Shimon Prokupecz, Matthew J. Friedman and Rachel Clarke, CNN

(CNN) -- Uvalde, Texas (CNN) — Editor’s note: This story contains graphic images and descriptions of the Uvalde school massacre. The children pictured all survived and their parents asked CNN to show the images for people to see what their sons and daughters had to endure and understand what this kind of violence does.

The mothers called and they texted. They wanted to see the videos that showed their children in some of the worst moments of their young lives: The footage from body cameras as the boys and girls were brought out, bloodied and traumatized after being left with a murderous gunman for 77 minutes in the classrooms of Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.

It was nearly a year since their children had survived the massacre of 19 of their fourth-grade classmates and two teachers. But they still had so many questions, and no one in authority seemed prepared to answer.

( For all the Mom's and their children, they so desperately want this to end. )

May 24, 2023

Gov. Abbott orders all Texas flags lowered to half-staff in memory of Uvalde

Gov. Greg Abbott said late Tuesday night that all Texas flags across the state to be lowered to half-staff all day Wednesday in memory of the Uvalde school shooting victims.

The call comes after one year ago, 19 students and two teachers were killed by a gunman who entered Robb Elementary School.

376 law enforcement officers across 20 agencies waited for 77 minutes before breaching the classroom door.

(The ONLY thing Gov. Abbott will ever do is lower the American flag....that's it. )

May 22, 2023

Mohamad Safa@mhdksafa: This is a side by side of two women gracing the front covers



There seems to be an unwritten rule which equates beauty with youngness. In an interview, Martha Stewart told the reporter she credits her organic, home-grown, farm-to-table eating, yoga, and actively healthy lifestyle to her youthfulness. While that’s an admirable journey for her, let’s not forget the amount of privilege that kind of lifestyle requires.

On the left is Apo Whang-Od, who is a 106-year-old tribal tattooist in the Philippines. The wisdom she carries in every forehead wrinkle and frown line is stunning. Her eyes are glass, reflecting back all that she’s witnessed over a century of lived experiences. Her tattoos a reminder of the ancestors she seeks to honor.

Both women are beautiful in their own right. But I wish we as women didn’t play into this idea that we have to look younger—and thinner—in order to fit some unrealistic beauty standard which will grant us acceptance and relevance in the world around us.

I’m writing this for any woman who, like me, may have had a punched-gut reaction to seeing an octogenarian in a swimsuit on the cover of a magazine looking more like a woman in her forties or fifties: Anti-aging is not a beauty standard.

There IS beauty in wrinkles, and saggy skin, and drooping breasts. These are markers of a life hard fought for and well lived. It seems odd to try and erase these battle scars.

So while I applaud Martha for her fortunate body, carefully curated procedures, and pristinely styled makeup, I also applaud Whang-Od for what others may perceive as imperfections.

Anti-aging is not a beauty standard.
Authenticity is.

@ FeministNews

( This speaks to the heart of the issue for me, and why I believe it is important to recognize external pressures from society at large.)

Btw, if the group leaders don't approve of twitter posts in general, just let me know and I'll remove it.

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