Friday, October 26, 2012

China Blocks Web Access to Times After Article; New York Times, 10/25/12

Keith Bradsher, New York Times; China Blocks Web Access to Times After Article: "The Chinese government swiftly blocked access Friday morning to the English-language and Chinese-language Web sites of The New York Times from computers in mainland China in response to an article in both languages describing wealth accumulated by the family of the country’s prime minister... China maintains the world’s most extensive and sophisticated system for Internet censorship, employing tens of thousands of people to monitor what is said, delete entries that contravene the country’s extensive and unpublished regulations and even write new entries that are favorable to the government. Rebecca MacKinnon, a senior fellow specializing in Internet free expression and privacy issues at the New America Foundation, a nonpartisan group headquartered in Washington, said that the Chinese interruption of Internet access was typical of the response to information that offended leaders. “This is what they do: they get mad, they block you,” she said."

Thursday, October 25, 2012

UNC’s Erik Highsmith caught plagiarizing 11-year-olds; Yahoo Sports, 10/23/12

Graham Watson, Yahoo Sports; UNC’s Erik Highsmith caught plagiarizing 11-year-olds: "Per a report in the News & Observer, North Carolina receiver Erik Highsmith plagiarized content from four 11-year-olds in order to fill a class requirement. Highsmith was required to add posts to blog for 30 percent of his grade and wrote about poultry farming and people and pets — the poultry piece was originally written and posted by kids in grade school."

Teachers make extra money selling materials on the Web; Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, 10/20/12

Donna Gordon Blankinship, Associated Press via Pittsburgh Post-Gazette; Teachers make extra money selling materials on the Web: "While most characterize these sites as an inexpensive way for teachers to supplement textbook materials, some teachers may get pushback from administrators for their entrepreneurial efforts. Seattle Public Schools recently revised its ethics policy, with the new policy prohibiting teachers from selling anything they developed on district time, district spokeswoman Teresa Wippel said. "Anything created on their own time could also cross a gray line, depending on the item and how closely tied it is to classroom work," she said. currently has about 300,000 items for sale plus more than 50,000 free items. All told, more than 1 million teachers have bought or sold items on since it began. After paying the site fees, teachers have collectively earned more than $14 million on the site since it was founded."

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Twitter Removes Anti-Semitic Postings, French Jewish Group Says; New York Times, 10/19/12

Steven Erlanger and Alan Cowell, New York Times; Twitter Removes Anti-Semitic Postings, French Jewish Group Says: "Several Twitter users posting under the hashtag criticized the decision to delete the anti-Semitic posts, calling it censorship. A user calling himself Andre said: “Better to educate than censure. Shame on you Twitter.” Another, Craig McLeod, asked, “Who decides what is anti-Semitic and abusive?” Asked for comment, Twitter repeated its standard policy statement: “Twitter does not mediate content. If we are alerted to content that may be in violation of our terms of service, we will investigate each report and respond according to the policies and procedures outlined in our support pages.” No one at Twitter would talk on the record about the French posts, but it has its own criteria for regulating content and will sometimes suspend an individual account or withhold individual posts."