What we've been reading - w/c 27th June

Updated: Jul 29


Each week, Alice puts together a round-up of interesting articles from the world of technology ethics. We post these on our social channels as well as sharing them on our blog.


Here’s her pick from w/c 27th June:


👉Period apps in a post-Roe world: What you need to know

[mashable.com]


Political regimes can change in a second. When you share personal information with others in a free and democratic regime, you may feel safe. But when this regime changes to something more authoritarian, you are at immediate risk. It is very important to take this advice seriously when it comes to period tracking apps, but also think twice about smart home devices, banking apps and messaging services.


Read more from mashable.com here

June 2022 - 1



👉An ad tool is helping Meta and crisis pregnancy centers identify people seeking information about abortions online

[gizmodo.com]



“With the help of a tool called Blacklight —released by The Markup in 2020 to help users detect website trackers—Reveal discovered that at least 294 crisis pregnancy centers had shared visitor information with Meta. According to Reveal, this includes information that can indicate whether someone is considering an abortion such as their interest in an appointment. So while Meta claims not to collect specific medical information, it is still possible to infer from its data that a user is, in all likelihood, pregnant. It’s a fine distinction, but one that would seem to effectively render its safeguards, at least in this instance, useless.”


Read more from gozmodo.com here

June 2022 - 2



👉Schools Are Spending Billions on High-Tech Defense for Mass Shootings

[NY Times]



But do these surveillance systems actually work?


“Civil liberty experts warn that the spread of surveillance technologies like gun detectors may make some students feel less safe. They say the tools also do nothing to address what many consider to be the underlying causes of school shootings: the widespread availability of assault weapons and a national mental health crisis.

“Much of this tech serves the function of a distraction,” said Chris Harris, the policy director for the Austin Justice Coalition, a racial justice group in Texas.”


Read more from nytimes.com here

June 2022 - 3



👉Responsible Business Requires Truth and Reconciliation

[usca]



“What we may have been given, is not to be kept. But if it is kept, can we put something of shared value back in the circle? Much of what has been extracted from the land across what is now called Canada and the United States has been kept and commercialized for three centuries. What was laid out in its original form and seen as a gift quickly turned to treasure and commodity. We continue to witness it today.”


Read more from usca.com here

June 2022 - 4



👉How al-Shabaab uses Facebook to spread extremism in East Africa

[nation]



Facebook have already admitted their fault when it came to genocide in Myanmar due to the spreading of extremist content. Will this pattern be repeated in Kenya?


“According to ISD, there is a highly-coordinated online propaganda machine that relies on thousands-strong networks of Somali, Swahili and Arabic language Facebook profiles and pages to seed its content on the platform, some of which may have been hacked from unsuspecting users.”


Read more from nation.com here

June 2022 - 5



👉Policing of speech in China continues with new professional ethics guidelines for livestreamers [quartz]



“The new livestreaming guidelines were issued jointly by China’s State Administration of Radio and Television (SART) and the Ministry of Culture and Tourism... they emphasize that livestreamers should “adhere to correct political orientation” and not publish content that “weakens, distorts, or denies the leadership of the Chinese Communist Party.”


Read more from qz.com here

June 2022 - 6



👉Now China wants to censor online comments

[MIT Technology Review]



“On June 17, China’s internet regulator Cyberspace Administration of China (CAC) published a draft update on how platforms and creators should handle online comments. One line stands out: all online comments would have to be pre-reviewed before being published.”


Read more from technologyreview.com here

June 2022 - 7



👉Leaked Amazon memo says the company may run out of available labor by 2024

[engadget]




Thanks to Georgia Iacovou (@geoiac) for the h/t here in Horrific/Terrific. It comes as no surprise that Amazon is running out of a labour pool due to its awful treatment of workers. Their solution 1) pay workers more and 2) bring in the robots.


The memo contained internal research from 2021 that predicted a looming labor crisis for the e-commerce giant that would hit some areas faster than others. For example, it estimated that Amazon would exhaust its labor supply in Phoenix, Arizona by the end of 2021 and in California’s Inland Empire by the end of 2022. It calculated the available pool of workers using factors like income levels and proximity to current or planned Amazon facilities.”


Read more from engadget.com here

June 2022 - 8



👉FTC Charges Twitter with Deceptively Using Account Security Data to Sell Targeted Ads

[ftc.gov]



FTC and DOJ Order Twitter to Pay $150 Million Penalty for Violating 2011 FTC Order and Cease Profiting from Deceptively Collected Data


Read more from ftc.gov here

June 2022 - 9



If you think we should be reading anything else please email hello@hattusia.com, and finally, thank you for reading, Sophie Ryan.



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