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How the ‘John Oliver Effect’ Is Having a Real-Life Impact

How the ‘John Oliver Effect’ Is Having a Real-Life Impact
Comedians mock our cultural and political institutions on TV all the time. But it’s not every day that a comic’s jokes crash a government website or directly inspire legislators to push for new laws. John Oliver, host of HBO comedy news program Last Week Tonight, is quickly building up that level of cultural cachet. While his forebears and former colleagues Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart spend as much time lampooning the news media covering world events as they do analyzing events themselves, Oliver’s show stands out for its investigations into topics as varied as the militarization of the police state, Net neutrality and Argentina’s debt crisis. Read more Feds Limit Law That Lets Cops Seize Your Stuff Oliver’s approach has even been cited as an inspiration for local government transparency. But the show has long caused real-world ripples. Ending Unfair Bail Requirements Eviscerating FIFA Crashing the FCC Over Net Neutrality Giving Back to Female Engineers Fox; Jamie McCarthy—Getty Images

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Google's Project Sunroof tells you how much solar energy is hitting your rooftop As the world's largest search engine provider, Google is privy to an unfathomable amount of questions about life ("Where am I?"), love ("Why did I get married?"), and yes, cats ("How to make my cat love me."). And it says an increasing number of people have been searching for answers relating to solar panels - how many do I need, who's going to install them, how much will I save, and does my rooftop get enough sunlight anyway? So it's launching Project Sunroof, a new service that can walk you through the process of investing in your own solar panel system. Using data collected by Google Maps, Project Sunroof will use 3D-modelling to figure out how many solar panels can be installed on a specific rooftop.

FCC to Seize Entire Internet, Cable Spectrum Under 400-Page “Rules” FCC cherry picking existing laws for cable, radio & broadband to regulate Internet Kit Daniels Prison March 13, 2015 The FCC is combining several separate sections of telecommunications law developed for radio, cable TV and broadband access for a regulatory takeover of the Internet and is enforcing it with the same rules and methods as the Justice Department, according to its 400-page report released Thursday. The agency is going to regulate the Internet like broadcast radio and television through a patchwork of telecommunications laws which were developed not only separately of each other but also in different decades. “We ground the open Internet rules we adopt today in multiple sources of legal authority – Section 706, Title II and Title III of the Communications Act [of 1934],” page 120 of the 400-page FCC report states. A d v e r t i s e m e n t

Probably Overthinking It: The Inspection Paradox is Everywhere The following is a draft of an article I have submitted for publication in CHANCE Magazine, a publication of the American Statistical Association. With their encouragement, I am publishing it here to solicit comments from readers (and possibly corrections). The Inspection Paradox is Everywhere The inspection paradox is a common source of confusion, an occasional source of error, and an opportunity for clever experimental design. Most people are unaware of it, but like the cue marks that appear in movies to signal reel changes, once you notice it, you can’t stop seeing it. A common example is the apparent paradox of class sizes.

Save the Internet! Article in globalresearch By Kevin Zeese and Margaret Flowers To ensure the Internet is open to all on an equal basis we must act now to prevent mega-corporations from destroying Internet Freedom Update: Actions every day starting on Wednesday, May 7th, at noon and 5 pm. To Save The Internet, we are building a People’s Firewall against the FCC’s proposed rule that will create a ‘pay to play’ Internet by ending net neutrality. G.O.P. Candidates and Obama’s Failure to Fail What did the men who would be president talk about during last week’s prime-time Republican debate? Well, there were 19 references to God, while the economy rated only 10 mentions. Republicans in Congress have voted dozens of times to repeal all or part of Obamacare, but the candidates only named President Obama’s signature policy nine times over the course of two hours.

Dangers of a World Without Net Neutrality Last month the FCC released its proposal for America’s new network neutrality rules. Unfortunately, the agency’s proposal included rules that would permit Internet providers to prioritize certain websites, e.g., make deals with some services for a faster and better path to subscribers. While the FCC claims it is not endorsing such deals, the proposed rules will inevitably be read as exactly that. Escaping the Refugee Crisis by Peter Singer PRINCETON – In July, the number of migrants reaching the borders of the European Union passed 100,000 – the third consecutive month in which a new record was set. In one week in August, 21,000 migrants arrived in Greece. Tourists complained that the summer holiday they had planned on a Greek island was now in the midst of a refugee camp.

Why Privacy Matters Even if You Have 'Nothing to Hide' By Daniel J. Solove When the government gathers or analyzes personal information, many people say they're not worried. "I've got nothing to hide," they declare. This couple want a deaf child. Should we try to stop them? Like any other three-year-old child, Molly has brought joy to her parents. Bright-eyed and cheerful, Molly is also deaf - and that is an issue which vexes her parents, though not for the obvious reasons. Paula Garfield, a theatre director, and her partner, Tomato Lichy, an artist and designer, are also deaf and had hoped to have a child who could not hear. 'We celebrated when we found out about Molly's deafness,' says Lichy.