In a 6-3 decision Friday, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan were the only dissenting justices. Writing for the majority, Justice Alito left it up to state legislatures to write their own abortion laws. As...
Supreme Court overturns Roe v. Wade, opening the door to surveillance
In a 6-3 decision Friday, the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade. Justices Breyer, Sotomayor, and Kagan were the only dissenting justices. Writing for the majority, Justice Alito left it up to state legislatures to write their own abortion laws. As far as tech policy is concerned, many advocates, including WashingTech, are concerned that law enforcement will now be able to surveil location data in any of the 13 states in which abortion is now outlawed.
Congress inches closer to federal privacy law
The House Energy & Commerce Committee passed a bipartisan privacy framework on Thursday, with the measure now heading to the Senate. Reuters’ Diane Bartz reports the bill would let you opt out of targeted ads online. It would also give users the ability to sue firms for selling their user data to third parties. The bill would override the patchwork of state privacy laws we have currently in states including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Utah and Virginia. The Washington Post reported Thursday that Senator Maria Cantwell, a key vote, doesn’t support the bill in its current form for precisely that reason – the Senator believes that, in many cases, the state privacy rules are stronger than the ones in the House bill.
Greintens may have incited violence on social with ‘RINO’ hunting video
Eric Greitens, the former Republican governor of Missouri who is now running for the US Senate, posted a video appearing to encourage viewers to go ‘RINO’ hunting – RINO being an acronym for Republican in Name Only. “Join the MAGA crew,” Greitens says in the video, “Get a RINO hunting permit.” He says this as he’s holding a shotgun surrounded by smoke, and a couple of boneheads dressed up as SWOT team officers bust through the door behind him. Facebook was the only company to remove the video outright. Twitter and YouTube left it up, although Twitter added a “public interest notice” to the tweet.
Talk therapy apps under scrutiny
If you’ve used a talk therapy app like Betterhelp or Talkspace since COVID started, chances are you’ve had at least a fleeting concern about how these companies use your data. Well, Senators Elizabeth Warren, Cory Booker, and Ron Wyden are concerned too, which is why they sent a letter to the firms asking them to explain their privacy practices. The Democratic lawmakers want to know how these firms collect data, what they do to protect it, and how they communicate their data protection practices to their users.
Meta reportedly to shut down misinformation-reporting tool
The Verge reports that Meta is planning to shut down Crowdtangle, which can be used to find misinformation within popular social media posts. A Meta spokesperson told the Verge that the company will probably keep Crowdtangle working at least through the midterms. After that, the company says it plans to launch a better product.
Amazon may enable your Alexa assistant to take on the voice of a dead relative
So at its annual re:MARS conference in Las Vegas, Amazon SVP and Head Scientist for Alexa, Rohit Prasad, demonstrated how a future iteration would enable your Alexa Assistant to take on the voice of anyone, including a dead relative, at least that was how Prasad decided to demonstrate the product – with someone’s dead grandma reading a bedtime story.
Don’t ask me – I’m just reading what they wrote for me here.
Anyway, that’s it for this week. You can find links to all of these stories in the show notes.
Stay safe, stay informed, have a great weekend. See you Monday.