The Thai satirist abducted in broad daylight

Sitanan Satsaksit was on the phone to her brother early in the evening on 4 June when he told her to hold the line. Wanchalearm, also known as Tar, was handing over a few dollars for meatballs at a stall opposite his home in the Cambodian capital, Phnom Penh.

Then Sitanan heard noise coming from the other end of the line.

“I heard a loud bang. At first I thought he had a car accident as he shouted ‘I can’t breathe, I can’t breathe,'” she tells the BBC.

Sitanan could hear the screams of her brother as men shouted in Khmer, a language she doesn’t understand.

But her brother had not been hit by a car – he was being kidnapped.

Witnesses at the scene say they saw a group of armed men bundling Wanchalearm into a black SUV. As he shouted for help in Khmer, some people started moving

Read More

U.S. senator to change anti-child porn bill over Google, Facebook encryption concerns: draft

By Nandita Bose

(Reuters) – U.S. legislation aimed at stopping online child sexual abuse material is likely to be amended to address concerns of platforms like Google and Facebook that the proposed law goes too far to weaken privacy protections for ordinary users, according to a draft of the bill seen by Reuters.

Tech companies, currently protected from lawsuits over content posted by users, feared the original bill would hurt their ability to offer protections like end-to-end encryption. That technology scrambles messages so they can be deciphered only by the sender and intended recipient, a feature critical to the online privacy of billions of people.

In a new draft authored by Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Lindsey Graham, The Eliminating Abuse and Rampant Neglect of Interactive Technologies Act of 2019, or EARN IT Act, makes compliance with a set of controversial “best practices” voluntary instead of mandatory for companies such as

Read More

Music’s winners (Lil Baby) and losers (John Lennon) for this Godforsaken 2020, so far

Lil Baby has the year's most-streamed album to date. <span class="copyright">(Paras Griffin/Getty Images)</span>
Lil Baby has the year’s most-streamed album to date. (Paras Griffin/Getty Images)

Quick — who won at this year’s Grammy Awards?

If 2020 has broken your brain like it’s broken ours, you might have trouble remembering that the Grammys even happened this year.

But music’s premier awards show really did go down in late January, just as the COVID-19 pandemic was about to banish artists from stages — and make everything that happened before that feel like ancient history.

Billie Eilish was the night’s big success story: only the second artist in history to sweep the four major categories and the youngest ever, at age 18, to take the prizes for album and record of the year. (She’s 47 now.)

Recovering this lost knowledge the other day led us to wonder who else in music could be described as victors in this wretched year, when the only thing competing with

Read More

Facebook Cracked Down On Extremism. It Only Took A Major Boycott And Multiple Killings.

Facebook announced on Tuesday that it had banned hundreds of accounts and dozens of groups dedicated to the far-right “boogaloo” movement, which has been linked to multiple extremist plots and killings in recent months. Facebook touted its action as “the latest step in our commitment to ban people who proclaim a violent mission from using our platform.” 

Other social media companies took similar actions against hate speech and extremism this week. Reddit announced that it banned about 2,000 of its online communities for violating its content policies, including the subreddit The_Donald, which had about 800,000 members who supported President Donald Trump.

YouTube de-platformed several far-right extremists from its service, and the streaming service Twitch temporarily suspended Trump’s account for “hateful conduct.”

But this isn’t a sea change in how these platforms address hateful content. Many experts instead see a slow, piecemeal approach by companies who have let extremism and political

Read More

Find & Support Black-Owned Businesses With These Apps & Websites

Following the police killing of George Floyd in May, protests have broken out across the country. We encourage everyone to join the fight by marching in local protests, signing online petitions, donating, and calling your elected officials, but there’s another way to fight systemic racial inequality, and that’s by putting your money where your mouth is. Make a commitment to support Black-owned businesses in your area.

Right now, Twitter users are asking their friends and followers to share their own or their favorite Black-owned businesses. While sifting through social media responses is one way to find spots to support, there are a lot of tweets containing the phrase “Black-owned businesses.” So if you’re looking to find a Black-owned business quickly — perhaps in time for take-out dinner tonight — there are also many useful resources online and in the app store that can help.

Ahead are top-ranking websites

Read More

Dogs And July 4 Fireworks Don’t Mix: Check Shelters In Town

CHICAGO HEIGHTS, IL — Charlie, Lucy and all the other family dogs making your lives richer are more likely to run away on July 4-5 than at any other time of the year as they flee in terror from the booming fireworks displays commemorating Independence Day.

This year, cities and groups across America, including in Chicago Heights, have canceled a slew of Fourth of July fireworks displays to discourage large crowds where the coronavirus can easily spread. Charlie and Lucy probably haven’t noticed.

In the past, dog owners have had more control over when or if their pets are exposed to loud fireworks. But now, several cities have reported spikes in the number of people shooting off illegal fireworks since the pandemic began.

In Hartford, Connecticut, for example, illegal fireworks have been popping off for months. The police chief there said dispatchers field about 200 noise complaints a day about

Read More

I tried Hey, the $99 a year email app that Apple threatened to remove from the App Store, and it completely changed the way I look at my inbox forever

The Hey app focuses on its so called Imbox, for important email.
The Hey app focuses on its so called Imbox, for important email.

Hey/Basecamp

  • Hey is a new email app from Basecamp that’s designed to help you get the most out of your email.

  • It lets you sort emails into categories for newsletters and shipping notifications, and makes it possible to screen emails just like you screen phone calls.

  • The email provider, which was initially invite-only, has caught on in the short time it’s been available, breaking into the top 100 iPhone apps the day after it launched.

  • Overall, I found that Hey made my inbox feel more organized and has the potential to help me find relevant information more quickly, but it comes with a learning curve and a hefty price tag: $99 per year.

  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

There’s been an obsession with killing email in recent years, and for good reason. Our inboxes have become

Read More

Tech’s overdue reckoning with hate speech still isn’t enough

To be clear, online hate groups have been around for far longer than Trump’s presidency. There have always been fringe groups on the internet — see 4chan and 8chan, for example, where forum users harassed women in the video game industry as part of Gamergate. They are often a radicalizing force, and connected to real-life violent acts like the shootings in El Paso and the mosque in Christchurch, New Zealand. 

“What we’ve found is that hateful actors are early adopters of technology,” Henry Fernandez, a Senior Fellow of the Center for American Progress Action Fund, told Engadget. Fernandez is also the co-founder of Change The Terms, a coalition of civil and human rights organizations that is focused on reducing hate online. He cited the recent “Zoombombing” efforts where harassers infiltrated private video chats with pornographic images and racial epithets. “Zoom only became a popular tool a few months ago, and

Read More

Four Ways Small Businesses Can Cuts Costs

While running a business is often a juggling act of different roles and tasks, the one constant is the job of managing the capital used to fund it all. Regardless of what larger social or economic issues might be at play at any given time, effectively managing your business’s expenses and investments is the best way to ensure that it can continue to grow and evolve in the future.

While there are a number of items that business owners monitor in order to more effectively allocate their capital, what follows are four areas that any business can target to cut unnecessary or wasteful spending.

Manage Resources Strategically

At its core, owning and operating a small business is about managing resources. From the talent on staff to the equipment and materials used in production, business owners are trained to make sure all of their resources are allocated optimally.

Of course, after

Read More

Dogs And July 4 Fireworks Don’t Mix: Check Deerfield Shelters

DEERFIELD, IL — Charlie, Lucy and all the other family dogs making your lives richer are more likely to run away on July 4-5 than at any other time of the year as they flee in terror from the booming fireworks displays commemorating Independence Day.

This year, cities and groups across America, including in Deerfield, have canceled a slew of Fourth of July fireworks displays to discourage large crowds where the coronavirus can easily spread. Charlie and Lucy probably haven’t noticed.

In the past, dog owners have had more control over when or if their pets are exposed to loud fireworks. But now, several cities have reported spikes in the number of people shooting off illegal fireworks since the pandemic began.

In Hartford, Connecticut, for example, illegal fireworks have been popping off for months. The police chief there said dispatchers field about 200 noise complaints a day about bottle rockets,

Read More