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Comic for February 19, 2018

Dilbert - February 20, 2018 - 12:59am
Categories: Geek

Facebook’s secret weapon in the fight against foreign meddling? Postcards

Ars Technica - 31 min 9 sec ago

Enlarge / Mock-up of expected returns from Facebook’s postcard campaign. (credit: Alexey Nikolsky / AFP / Getty Images / Aurich Lawson)

A Facebook executive has announced a new plan designed to mitigate foreign influence in political ad buys on the social media platform. It involves a technology your grandparents would recognize—postcards.

The plan was announced one day after Special Counsel Robert Mueller unveiled indictments against 13 Russians who used Facebook, among other American social media, to attempt to influence the outcome of the 2016 presidential election.

The idea comes from Katie Harbath, Facebook’s global director of policy programs, who gave a talk at a conference of the National Association of Secretaries of State over the weekend. If an ad mentions a specific candidate, she said, then Facebook would mail a postcard to an American address, ostensibly to prove that the ad buyer was Stateside.

Read 6 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Judge finds written attack on climate scientist too ludicrous to be libel

Ars Technica - 42 min 15 sec ago

Enlarge / Justice. (credit: Brian Turner / Flickr)

A few climate scientists have found themselves in court in recent years. Generally, they've been the targets of suits, often by political groups filing Freedom of Information Act requests to fish through their emails. But in a couple of cases, fed-up scientists have taken their most vitriolic detractors to court for defamation and libel.

Well-known Penn State researcher Michael Mann, for example, sued columnist and radio host Mark Steyn and two others for articles repeatedly accusing him of academic fraud (and making an analogy to child molestation).

Canadian climate scientist Andrew Weaver is in a slightly different position, as he decided to run for office several years ago and is now the leader of the Green Party in British Columbia. In 2015, he won a case against the National Post for an article accusing him of scientific misconduct, though that decision was overturned by an appeals court last year.

Read 12 remaining paragraphs | Comments

Dealmaster: Presidents Day sales on TVs, laptops, and electronics are here

Ars Technica - 50 min 23 sec ago

Greetings, Arsians! Courtesy of our friends at TechBargains, we have another round of deals to share. But not just any deals: Presidents Day deals. Ooooooh.

OK, so Washington's Birthday isn't the biggest holiday—the Dealmaster doesn't even have the day off—but it still brings a decent assortment of sales to this otherwise slow portion of the shopping year.

So to help you sort through it all, we've rounded up a choice selection of these discounts, which include sales on a number of Lenovo ThinkPad laptops, Dell PCs, Bose and Beats headphones, DJI drones, Samsung SSDs, and an assortment of 4K TVs, among other gadget goodies. We've updated the list since it was initially published last week, and we'll be sure to keep an eye out for additional deals as they come along.

Read 11 remaining paragraphs | Comments

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