Tagged With racism

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Call it algorithmic ignorance. Or maybe algorithmic idiocy. On Friday, Pro Publica uncovered that Facebook's ad targeting system, which groups users together based on profile data, offered to sell ads targeting a demographic of Facebook users that self-reported as "Jew Haters".

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In recent years, Reddit has banned a bevy of far-right troll havens, including its board for the white supremacist "alt-right" and others used for the harassment of women, minorities and other people. The bans were a reversal of Reddit's prior policy to not ban "questionable" content — and drew predictable outrage, given that its policy of non-intervention had fostered an explosion of very active fringe communities, many of them far to the right or openly racist.

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In the wake of Donald Trump's refusal to simply condemn the actions of white supremacists at a neo-Nazi rally in Charlottesville, business leaders, politicians, pundits, and many more have issued statements making it clear that racism can not be tolerated. But not everyone has called out the man who is emboldening white supremacists with his tacit approval. Apple CEO Tim Cook just did.

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As the White House was preparing to implement deep cuts to the Environmental Protection Agency earlier this month, Mustafa Ali, head of the Office on Environmental Justice, resigned. A week later, his motivation for departing became clear, when President Trump released a hardline budget draft that called for slashing EPA funding by 31 per cent, and eliminating as many as 3200 agency jobs. Ali's resignation, and the ensuing budget draft, are disturbing signs that America's poor and people of colour are going to continue suffering disproportionately from pollution under Trump. Sadly, that's nothing new.

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Airbnb has long dealt with a problem of racist hosts who discriminate against people for reasons including race, ethnicity, and gender. After facing widespread criticism and class action lawsuits, the burgeoning startup valued at upwards of $US25 ($33) billion is rolling out new rules in an attempt to combat racism.

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Earlier this week, Mic reported that members of the alt-right had created a Google Chrome extension which surrounded the names of people suspected of being Jewish with "echo" parenthesis. For example, Bryan (((Menegus))). The extension, named Coincidence Detector, has now been banned from the Chrome store.

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Amid growing accusations of racism, Airbnb has permanently banned a North Carolina host who cancelled a black guest's reservation and called her racist slurs. The ban is Airbnb's attempt to do damage control at a time when social-media campaigns, personal accounts and even a Harvard research paper claim that the site is a hotbed of racism. It also provides a glimpse into the power of social media and the challenge of regulating users in the sharing economy.

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For some reason, Snapchat decided it was a good idea to create a Bob Marley filter — one that makes the user look like a bizarre, warped version of the late singer, dreadlocks and all. All the typical things that might stop a massive social network from doing this — the fact that it looks like like automated blackface, the reductiveness of creating a Bob Marley filter on 4/20, the half-hearted attempts at incorporating Marley's music, the fact that it literally slaps blackface and dreadlocks on everyone who tries it — apparently didn't occur to Snapchat.