Monitoring Facebook content is driving workers nuts
… They’re coping with sex, drugs, guns in the workplace
— Facebook content moderators in the U.S. have resorted to extreme measures to cope with the stress of viewing graphic and offensive material on repeat, according to a new report from The Verge.
— In a wide-ranging exploration of working conditions at Facebook’s content moderation facility in Arizona, which is operated by a vendor called Cognizant, The Verge described an office where employees cope with intense stress by using drugs and having sex at work. One employee told The Verge that he even brought a gun to work because he feared retaliation from other former employees.
— The moderators are reportedly paid $15 per hour to work through a queue of content that could range from offensive jokes to potential threats to videos depicting murder.
No such thing as a dangerous neighborhood
Serious violence is extremely concentrated in very particular places and, most importantly, among very particular people. Dispelling the notion of “dangerous neighborhoods,” extensive research on geographic concentration has consistently found that around half of all crime complaints or incidents of gun violence concentrated at about 5 percent of street segments or blocks in a given city. Moving past “violent communities,” sophisticated analysis of social networks have demonstrated that homicides and shootings are strongly concentrated within small social networks within cities—and that there is even further concentration of violence within these social networks.
… less than 1 percent of a city’s population—the share involved in what we call “street groups” (gangs, sets, and crews)—is generally connected to over 50 percent of the city’s shootings and homicides.
Measles returns to Costa Rica, courtesy of French wing-nut family
— An unvaccinated French boy is suspected of having reintroduced measles to Costa Rica after the Central American country had been free of the disease for five years.
— It is unclear why the five-year-old French tourist had never received a measles jab, but the arrival of the highly contagious, potentially deadly disease in a country that has been measles-free since 2014 is likely to increase anxiety about the effects of the worldwide anti-vaccine movement.
— The reintroduction of measles to Costa Rica comes a month after the World Health Organisation (WHO) warned that “vaccine hesitancy” is in the top 10 of the worst health threats facing humanity in 2019.
Duh. Wisconsin dean who attacked 11-year-old won’t be back at school
The Capital Times
— The student’s mother, Mikiea Price, who is also a substitute teacher told Madison365 she saw security video where Rob Mueller-Owens, the school’s dean of students, threw her 11-year-old daughter to the ground.
Another bystander shooting in New Orleans
Nurse, 36, killed on Bourbon Street
… Since Friday, seven guns have been confiscated during arrests on Bourbon Street. The police chief urged people to leave their weapons at home as celebrations rev up as part of Mardi Gras season.
Medical marijuana is legal. Can Florida cops still search your car if they smell pot?
— If the pungent aroma of weed is wafting from your ride, South Florida cops usually have a green light to search your car.
— But with medical marijuana now allowed in Florida, along with some production of the similar-smelling hemp plant, a Miami man is challenging whether cops had the legal right to search his truck based on odor alone.
— The novel defense is being employed by Victor Chavez, who was found with a stash of marijuana hidden his truck in Southwest Miami-Dade last year. His lawyer says cops violated his constitutional right against an unlawful search and seizure.
— “The legalization of marijuana for a rapidly growing number of Floridians and businesses means that marijuana odor, in and of itself, is no longer an indication of criminality in Florida,” Assistant Miami-Dade Public Defender Fan Li wrote in his motion.
Dude arrested after shooting down drone that was tracking missing dog
NY Daily News
— An angry Long Island man pulled a Clint Eastwood on a drone that was hovering over his St. James property, allegedly using his shotgun to blast the high-flying gadget out of the sky, police said Sunday.
— Gerard Chasteen, 26, allegedly fired off three shells at the Mavic 2 Zoom drone, which was soaring around looking for a missing dog named Dezie at 4:45 p.m. Saturday, cops said.
— Not far away, the drone operators, Lynn Fodale and Teddy Henn, who volunteer with the pet-finding group Missing Angels Long Island, were puzzled when the gizmo suddenly went dead.
— When they met the sharpshooter, he immediately copped to downing the $2,000 drone — simply because he didn’t like it passing through his air space, according to Fodale.
— “Did you shoot down our drone?” Fodale asked.
— “Yeah, you can’t fly over my house,” Chasteen fired back, according to Fodale.
In prison almost 4 decades, wrongfully convicted man gets $21 million
— The city of Simi Valley, California, has reached a $21 million settlement with a man wrongly imprisoned for nearly 40 years in the killing of his girlfriend and her 4-year-old son.
— Craig Coley was released in 2017 after he was pardoned by then-Gov. Jerry Brown, who said DNA evidence and re-investigation proved Coley’s innocence.
— Coley’s DNA was not on the victim’s bedsheet, which contained DNA from an unknown man. Coley had an alibi for the time of the slayings and investigators later disproved testimony from an eyewitness who placed him at the scene.
— His parents died while he was in prison after mortgaging their home to pay his legal bills.
— Soon after Coley was pardoned, a judge declared him factually innocent. Simi Valley police have not arrested anyone else in the killings.
SECURITY FOR SOCIAL SECURITY
Democrats have thrown their weight behind a measure that would extend and expand Social Security — largely by asking high earners to pony up, along with a gradual increase in the Social Security tax rate that applies to workers’ income.
Rising housing costs distorting US job market
— In US urban centers, between 1960 and 2016, inflation-adjusted rents increased by 61 percent, and home values by 112 percent, according to Harvard University’s Joint Center for Housing Studies. During that same period, median renter incomes increased by only 5 percent, while homeowner incomes increased by only 50 percent.
… When rising rents drive workers to live too far from available jobs to apply for them, businesses and the economy suffer as well. It’s not hard, after all, to imagine a coffee shop or restaurant that forgoes business, and economic growth, because it isn’t able to hire the workers it needs to provide adequate customer service.
US tax refunds plunge 17%
— Treasury claims it’s “abberational”
<> A call to restore deductions
… lawmakers from both parties in high-tax states such as New York and New Jersey arguing that the deduction cap unfairly punishes their voters. (as it was designed to.)
A civilization on the road to collapse?
A Cambridge historian weighs the factors … wealth inequality and climate change among them.
You Tube’s Suicide tips for children: A peditrician’s expose’
— Free Hess, a pediatrician and mother, had learned about the chilling videos over the summer when another mom spotted one on YouTube Kids.
— She said that minutes into the clip from a children’s video game, a man appeared on the screen — offering instructions on how to commit suicide.
— “I was shocked,” Hess said, noting that since then, the scene has been spliced into several more videos from the popular Nintendo game Splatoon on YouTube and YouTube Kids, a video app for children. Hess, from Ocala, Fla., has been blogging about the altered videos and working to get them taken down amid an outcry from parents and child health experts, who say such visuals can be damaging to children.
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