The first time Brian Sheldon had a sexual experience with another man, he contracted HIV. He came out as a gay man just before his 50th birthday. He lived in the suburbs of Brisbane, on Australia's east coast, with his wife of 25 years and he had two adult kids. When he and his wife separated, he had no gay friends. But his first gay experience changed his life forever. At first he didn't know what was wrong. He sought medical advice, but after a year of talking to doctors, being misdiagnosed with glandular fever and generally "feeling crappy," Sheldon eventually took matters into his own hands. The qualified nurse took a sample of his own blood and sent it for testing. The positive HIV diagnosis came through just before Christmas in 2013. Sheldon had a million questions but didn't know where to turn for answers. The GPs he worked with had little information, he couldn't get in to see a specialist until early the following year and the HIV support groups he found were … [Read more...] about How the internet has changed surviving with HIV
How much user has facebook
Facebook can't seem to get through a week quietly.This week, Germany's antitrust regulator ordered the world's largest social network to stop combining data from the Facebook accounts of its German users with information it collects about them from other sites unless they give their OK. The Federal Cartel Office's order covers not only Facebook's site, but Instagram, WhatsApp and other apps it own. In a blog post, Facebook said it would appeal the ruling. It argues that collecting data about its users outside of Facebook helps the social network improve its services and protect user safety. The German order is yet another reminder -- as if more were needed -- that social network is piling up trouble almost as quickly as added users. The company, which turned 15 years old in February, is trying to rebuild user trust, which has eroded in the midst of data and privacy scandals. It's also facing the wrath of lawmakers around the world because of the way its been used to spread … [Read more...] about Facebook’s troubles continue to grow: What you need to know
Nine months after Amnesty International called on Twitter to be more transparent about abuse on its platform, the organization has published another study indicating that—brace yourself—Twitter still has a damning online abuse problem, and it overwhelmingly affects women of color. While the findings are hardly surprising if you’ve even half-tuned into the platform’s discourse over the last few years, seeing the cold, hard numbers is a sobering reminder of Twitter’s hellish reality. The study, conducted in tandem with software company Element AI, found that black women were 84 percent more likely than white women to be included in an abusive or problematic tweet. “One in ten tweets mentioning black women was abusive or problematic,” Amnesty writes, “compared to one in fifteen for white women.” To conduct the study, over 6,500 volunteers from 150 countries waded through 228,000 tweets sent to 778 women politicians and journalists … [Read more...] about We Finally Have Some Hard Data on How Much Twitter Sucks
Facebook can't seem to get through a week without another scandal popping up.On Tuesday night, the tech giant's woes continued to grow after The New York Times reported that Facebook gave companies such as Netflix, Spotify and Microsoft greater access to users' personal data than the social network had previously disclosed. Among the details: Some companies reportedly could "read, write and delete users' private messages," the Times reported.The deals with Facebook made the services sold by partner companies more attractive. For Facebook, the deals were designed to help fuel its user growth and advertising revenue. By 2013, Facebook had entered into so many partnerships that its employees had trouble tracking them, according to the Times. So the company built a tool that tracked which partners were granted access to data and could turn that access on or off, according to the report. The report reinforces how valuable user data is to Facebook, which makes billions of dollars from … [Read more...] about Facebook’s terrible year just got worse: What you need to know
Social media, smartphones and the online world add layers of complexity to the world of politesse. Mark Bowden/Getty Images As we look back across history, we see that the rules of etiquette changed all the time. We no longer think it's OK for men to drag women around by the hair while waving a club in the air -- an admittedly extreme and cartoony example, but one that gets the point across. In general, men don't wear ties to work every day anymore, and women don't have to wear dresses and pantyhose -- either to work or to do housework --with an apron, pearls and heels, like the June Cleavers of yore. So with that said, it's no surprise that something as ubiquitous as the Internet has changed the rules of etiquette; the surprising thing would be if it hadn't. Think for a minute about what etiquette really means: customary behavior among a specific group of people. For example, sticking to etiquette in one country -- a place where people eat most often without utensils, for … [Read more...] about How has the Internet changed rules of etiquette?