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19 Aug 00:50

FCC asks for more public input on whether to let Charter impose data caps

by Jon Brodkin
Illustration of $100-dollar bills being sucked into a broadband network.

Enlarge (credit: Getty Images | Aurich Lawson)

The Federal Communications Commission is taking another round of public comments on Charter's petition seeking permission to impose data caps on broadband users and charge network-interconnection fees to online-video providers, following a court ruling that may complicate the FCC's decision.

The deadline for comments on Charter's petition passed on August 6. But in a public notice issued today, the FCC said it is opening an additional comment period that will last until September 2, giving people time to weigh in on the impact of the court ruling.

"To ensure that the [Wireline Competition] Bureau has a full record upon which to evaluate the effects of the conditions, we initiate this additional comment period," the FCC notice said, while also inviting commenters to "address the effect" of the new court ruling on the FCC's consideration of Charter's petition. As before, comments can be submitted on the docket by clicking "New Filing" or "Express." There are more than 1,500 filings, mostly from consumers who object to data caps.

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10 Aug 18:10

After nine Coronavirus positives, multiple viral photos, and few masks, an infamous Georgia high school is switching to all-remote learning [Followup]



26 Mar 16:55

The secret of Triscuits revealed

by Rob Beschizza

Triscuits. In this staple of American snacking life, what does the "Tri" stand for? One assumes, perhaps, that it refers to there being three layers, ingredients or some other triple quality of the snack itself. Sage Boggs emailed Nabisco, and amazingly Nabisco itself no longer remembers — it acquired Triscuit's manufacturer in 1928 and the records are long gone — but it does assert that the Tri is not a reference to "triple" or other three-related terms.

Boggs sleuthed it out based on the 1903 ad embedded above; read his Twitter thread for the spoiler.

05 Oct 05:37

Scientists say a machine designed to clean up "the great Pacific garbage patch", provide the ingredients for Lil' Lisa brand slurry, is officially operational in the Pacific and working as intended [Spiffy]

22 Sep 00:55

Papercraft toys based on Endgame Thor, Into the Spider-Verse, and much more

by (John)

*Buy Gwenom toys at ebay.
07 Sep 00:49

Brave man releases wolf with paw caught in trap

by Mark Frauenfelder

Steel-jaw leghold traps are extraordinarily cruel animal control devices. This guy risked grevious bodily injury rescuing a terrified wolf that was trapped in one.

[via r/bemazed]

Image: Reddit

05 Sep 06:53

His Mother Was Killed by a Van Making Amazon Deliveries. Here’s the Letter He Wrote to Jeff Bezos.

by by Patricia Callahan

by Patricia Callahan

After his mother was killed by a driver delivering Amazon packages, Tyler Hayes wrote a letter to Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos.

Stacey Hayes Curry, who was hit and killed by a driver working for an Amazon contractor. (Courtesy of Tyler Hayes)

Hayes asked Bezos to come up with safer ways for Amazon’s contractors to deliver packages so that no other family would experience the devastation his has.

“Amazon is a leading company in so many areas, but is repeatedly cited for putting its workers at risk from over working, which has put others at risk as well,” Hayes wrote. “Maybe it was simply carelessness by one driver at one time that forever impacted my life, but I don’t think so. I think this attitude of reckless speed stems from the top and trickles down.”

Hayes couldn’t bring himself to send it.

Stacey Hayes Curry, 61, was a legal secretary at a San Diego law firm. On a clear June day last year, she was coming back from a walk in the office park where she worked when a delivery driver for an Amazon contractor ran her over with his rented cargo van.

He told police he had just dropped off a package at one building in the office park and was on his way to another. He thought he had hit a speed bump and didn’t realize he had run over a pedestrian until he saw Curry on the street in his rearview mirror, police records show.

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In reconstructing the crash at the scene that day, San Diego police noted that the music playing in the van was so loud they had to turn it down, and that there were no visual obstructions that would have prevented him from seeing Curry clearly.

“I just don’t know how the hell she got there,” police said the driver told them. The officer who reconstructed the crash added, “This statement alone tells me he was never paying attention to what was in front of him.”

The driver pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of vehicular manslaughter, according to the San Diego City Attorney’s Office.

Curry’s family settled a claim with the contractor’s insurer but did not sue Amazon, Hayes said. Efforts to reach the driver were unsuccessful; the contractor did not return calls seeking comment; and Amazon declined to comment.

Curry had raised two children as a single mom. She remarried in 2000 and was talking about retiring. She was devoted to her two grandchildren.

“Never once did I feel unloved or unappreciated,” Hayes said in a eulogy for his mother. “She loved me more than I ever would have asked her to. I couldn’t be more proud of who she was and how she sacrificed everything for me and my sister.”

Curry also helped her 93-year-old mother live independently, doing her grocery shopping and making sure they didn’t miss their beloved San Diego Padres games on TV. Curry called her mother every day and took her out to lunch after church on Sundays, said her brother, Tim Hauck.

“She was a real devoted daughter,” Hauck said, adding that their mother has noticeably declined since Curry’s death.

Here’s the Letter:

On June 15, 2018 my mom was hit and run over by a delivery truck contracted by Amazon in San Diego. She died on the way to the hospital.

This has devastated my family as you might imagine. My mom was a wonderful, hardworking woman who is missed by many.

I’m writing to advocate for Amazon putting more time and resources into its workforce safety. Not just those first-party employees, but those contracted out in the last-mile efforts.

By all accounts my mom’s death was an accident and wasn’t malicious. ... But from police reports there also wasn’t any remorse from the driver. Amazon PR offered a generic statement the day of the accident. But the contracted company did not.

This letter is simply to ask — How can you lead Amazon to innovate around safety? Amazon is a leading company in so many areas, but is repeatedly cited for putting its workers at risk from over working, which has put others at risk as well.

Maybe it was simply carelessness by one driver at one time that forever impacted my life, but I don’t think so. I think this attitude of reckless speed stems from the top and trickles down. There are plenty of reports of this over the years, from employees not being able to take bathroom breaks to drivers taking on too many deliveries and driving dangerously.

I truly hope Amazon can right the ship it’s charting on employee safety and how it conveys incentives to companies it contracts. Amazon’s worker safety ultimately impacts us all and the pain from this accident is one I hope no one else has to experience.

— Tyler Hayes

31 Aug 21:15

Well surprise surprise. Red Flag laws work. Whoda thunk it? [Cool]

27 Aug 05:53

Missouri's Attorney General, in an effort to embarrass himself and waste everyone's time, withholds public records because revealing them would violate the first amendment rights of the people making complaints [Dumbass]

19 Aug 07:50

By the power of Mall Rats [Spiffy]

13 Aug 01:13

Oh look, another "lone" wolf Trump voter arrested with loaded gun, knife, surgical gloves outside of El Paso immigration center [Scary]

22 Jul 17:21

Developers are trying to create a new decentralized internet call "d-web" in order to liberate the web from the control of the d-bags at Facebook, Amazon, and Google [Interesting]

27 May 20:30

Profiles of young Americans who entered voluntary exile rather than paying their student loans

by Cory Doctorow

CNBC profiles a small handful of young Americans who have moved abroad and ceased payments on their student debt, relying on international borders to protect them from their edu-creditors.

It's not clear how many young Americans have gone this route. That said, the story is fascinating, since -- as an expert in the story says -- this is effectively permanent exile. Once you stop paying your student loan, your lenders get to add penalties and compound interest on the penalties, then add more penalties and compound even more interest. Walk away from those debts and they will balloon to the point where you can never pay them back -- and since student debt is the only debt you can't effectively escape through bankruptcy (it's also the only debt that can be taken out of your Social Security), turning your back on student debt means never reestablishing residence or holding assets in the US or any country that could be reached through a treaty arrangement.

The exiles had struggled with low credit scores in the USA before leaving -- scores that were tanked by their nonpayment of student loans, which made everything else (housing, employment, access to credit) even harder, making it impossible for them to repay their loans.

One of those profiled is living for $50/month in rural India, where he gets to see elephants all the time -- but where he was also hospitalized by eating bad goat meat. The others are teaching English in China, Japan, Ukraine, and other places where the wages are low, but the expenses are also low.

Elizabeth Warren has proposed canceling student debt as part of her 2020 campaign. I am a donor to her campaign.

Seeing no future for himself in the United States, he decided to move to China in 2011. In the city of Zhongshan, he discovered he loved teaching students English. Unlike when he was delivering greasy boxes of pizza, he found his work meaningful and fulfilling.

Though he earned just around $1,000 a month in China, the school where he was teaching covered most of his rent and the cost of living was much lower than in Pennsylvania.

A few years later, Albright moved to Ukraine, where he is now a permanent resident. He first taught in Kiev and now does so in Odessa, a port city on the Black Sea. He has no plans to return to the United States. “I am much happier in Ukraine,” he said, adding that he hasn’t checked his student loan account in nearly eight years.

These Americans fled the country to escape their giant student debt [Annie Nova/CNBC]

(Image: Donkey Hotey, CC-BY)

13 May 22:20

New anti-inflammatory drugs are coming. You submitted this with a much more detailed, pun intensive, statistically supported, well thought out, deeply personal headline that offered solutions and perspectives yet to be revealed [Spiffy]

25 Feb 23:38

Know How and When Your Student Loan Interest Rate May Change

by Alicia Adamczyk on Two Cents, shared by Alicia Adamczyk to Lifehacker

If you have student loans, one of the keys to paying off your balance is understanding your interest rate and how it works.


17 Feb 20:43

Find the Cheapest Vacation Spot For You and Your Long-Distance Love With This Tool

by Emily Price

Long distance relationships are tough. When you’re involved in a romantic relationship with someone that doesn’t live in the same state (or country) you live in, figuring out how to get together can be a bit… challenging.


16 Jan 04:46

LAPD deploys controversial drone for the first time

by Cindy Chang

The SWAT officers thought the armed robbery suspect might be in a second-floor apartment.

To find out without risking their lives, they deployed a new tool: a small drone that hovered outside the window transmitting live video.

The video showed that the man did not appear to be in the room. The...

29 Dec 23:35

Democrats want help for clueless old fogeys in Congress to understand technology [Amusing]

24 Dec 03:41

Khashoggi Way sign goes up on Jared Kushner's street

by Gareth Branwyn

Political rabble-rouser and anti-Trump activist Claude Taylor wants to make sure that we don't forget the fact that the Saudi government, likely ordered by the crown prince, brutally tortured, murdered, and dismembered a U.S. resident and Washington Post journalist, Jamal Khashoggi. To that end, he has made street sign-styled bumper stickers that you can place over existing street signs to turn any road in America into Khashoggi Way. You can get one of your own, for free, by following the instructions below.

Thanks to Claude, in his Mad Doc Pac "Rat Truck," Jared and Ivanka's street in DC is now Khashoggi Way. Claude tweets:

I’m back from today’s delivery of #KhashoggiWay. I went to Jared. Or close. Let’s not lose sight of the fact that Jared Kushner assisted in the coverup of Jamal Khashoggi’s murder. #complicit @KarenAttiah

If you want to support Taylor's resistance projects, he has a Mad Dog Pac account on ShareBlue.

[Images via Claude Taylor's Twitter feed]

05 Dec 21:01

Scott Walker (R-ejected): I know nothing. Walker's aides: Um, about that [Asinine]

30 Jun 17:14

How to replace yourself with a very small shell script

by Cory Doctorow

Data scientist Hillary Mason (previously) talks through her astoundingly useful collection of small shell scripts that automate all the choresome parts of her daily communications: processes that remind people when they owe her an email; that remind her when she accidentally drops her end of an exchange; that alert her when a likely important email arrives (freeing her up from having to check and check her email to make sure that nothing urgent is going on). It's a hilarious and enlightening talk that offers a glimpse into the kinds of functionality that users can provide for themselves when they run their own infrastructure and aren't at the mercy of giant webmail companies. (via Clive Thompson)