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  • Geebo 9:22 am on April 14, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , crime,   

    Triple digit murders highlight craigslist’s lack of safety 

    Triple digit murders highlight craigslist's lack of safety

    Last year, The Washington Post ran an article entitled “Think twice before answering that ad: 101 murders have been linked to Craigslist”. That number was provided by the AIM Group who maintain a public list of victims on the Craigslist Killings – Craigslist Safety blog. Since that article was published, there have been nine more victims added to the list bringing the number up to 110.

    The article also goes on to mention Aim Group’s SafeTrade initiative to turn police stations into safe zones for craigslist transactions. That should tell you volumes right there on how unsafe craigslist really is. If a major industry watchdog group and numerous police departments across the country are urging you to use police stations to do business on craigslist then it really isn’t all that safe.

    Craigslist has such a low barrier to entry that they don’t even require a valid phone number for anyone to place ads. This allows anyone with a criminal intent to place an ad for whatever reason. The crimes on craigslist run the gamut from fake check scams to robbery to sexual assault, all the way up to murder. If history is any indicator, craigslist will probably not enact any additional safety features to the anemic ones that they barely have. Craigslist hasn’t even publicly commented on user safety in seven years, according to The Post.

    Craigslist has always prided itself on having a minimum number of employees. In the past they have stated that there are only about two dozen employees to help run a global classifieds empire. What it really comes down to is that craigslist seems to covet their profit margins so much, that they would rather sacrifice user safety than having new safety measures eat into their bank account. Craigslist may have been founded on Bay Area principles of community and sharing, but today they are nothing more than an international bastion of greed whose only real concern is the bottom line.

  • Geebo 9:01 am on April 13, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , Windows VIsta   

    Support for Windows Vista has ended, what can you do? 

    Support for Windows Vista has ended, what can you do?

    Among the tech set there has always been an unwritten rule when it comes to iterations of the Windows operating system. They say that you should skip every other release. For example, Windows 7 was a big hit among users, while Windows 8 was not very popular to say the least. Meanwhile the current generation OS, Windows 10, has been begrudgingly popular. (For the record, there was no Windows 9.) Now, one of those installations that should have been skipped, Windows Vista, has come to its end of life cycle, meaning parent company Microsoft will no longer support the operating system with security updates and patches.

    That doesn’t mean that there still aren’t machines out there using the now discontinued operating system. If you have one of those machines, you may be wondering what your options are when it comes to securing your computer. Unfortunately, the solutions aren’t that great. If you continue to use a Vista machine that’s connected to the internet you can run into several security issues that could compromise your machine with malware and viruses that could render your machine inoperable in a worst case scenario. Users of Windows 7 and 8 were offered free upgrades of Windows 10, unfortunately that offer was not extended to users of Vista. That means if you wanted to update to Windows 10 you could either shell out $120 for the operating system itself or several hundred dollars to buy a new machine that comes pre-installed with Windows 10.

    There is a small light at the end of the tunnel though if you’re willing to take some steps out of your comfort zone. If you’re currently running Vista, that more than likely means you’re running an older machine since Vista was only released on machines from 2007 to 2009. If you’re not afraid to experiment there are a number of free operating systems out there that are specifically designed to work on older machines while keeping them secure. Most of them are free alternatives to Windows known as Linux. While you can’t necessarily run Windows programs on them, there are many free alternatives to the Windows programs that you’re used to using. The most popular versions of Linux currently are Ubuntu and Linux Mint which both have a strong community and detailed instructions to get you started. While installing Linux may seem intimidating at first, it becomes easier as it goes along. Not only will this keep your machine secure for the foreseeable future but it will keep you from having to spend additional funds as well.

  • Geebo 9:01 am on April 12, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: g rated, , KSL Classifieds   

    G-Rated Classifieds do work 

    G-Rated Classifieds do work

    You may think you have heard this story before. In the days when the internet was mostly only accessed through computers, a tight-knit community in the Western US embraces a free local classifieds website that over the years has turned into a multi-million dollar business. That classifieds site not only has millions of users but it did so by not only keeping its ads family friendly, but not allowing adult and personal ads or ads for illegal content. While you may have thought this story was initially about craigslist, the story is actually about KSL Classifieds in the Beehive State of Utah.

    While it may have the backing of the Mormon Church, you couldn’t tell by looking at the website. The KSL Classifieds is used both by Mormon and non-Mormon alike. It’s so ubiquitous throughout the state of Utah that craigslist is a mere afterthought in Utah. That’s because KSL Classifieds takes care in making sure that its site is squeaky clean and relatively safe. The site is so relied upon in Utah that people who move out of the area lament the fact that their new city doesn’t have a local alternative to KSL Classifieds that’s clean, safe and free. KSL Classifieds has even spread its sphere of influence into neighboring states.

    Craigslist, on the other hand, sold its soul to the devil, so to speak, early on in its history. Its users didn’t take long before posting ads for prostitution, and its casual encounters section has led craigslist to a reputation of being a seedy and dangerous website. Due to their low level of entry, their constant refusal to moderate ads, and the number of murders committed through use of their site, craigslist has turned into a virtual hive of scum and villainy. However, some people think that there are no alternatives to the dangerous grounds of craigslist, but there are.

    Geebo.com is not only a national classifieds site, but it takes great pains to keep our site from falling into the pitfalls that sites like craigslist have. From the beginning, there have never been any adult ads allowed on the site. Where other sites decided they wanted to make money on the sexual trafficking of others, Geebo has refused to sink to that level. Geebo CEO Greg Collier even decided to remove the personal ads from the site since the personal sections of too many other sites have become the personal stalking grounds of sexual predators and another avenue for online sex trafficking. Greg even took a stand on ads for pets due to the fact that too many places like puppy mills use classifieds sites to sell sick animals to unsuspecting customers. That’s not even mentioning that the ads on Geebo are reviewed by actual people to avoid such things as scams and illegal content.

    Both of these sites, KSL and Geebo, prove that not only can G-Rated classifieds sites can be successful, but that there is a definite need for such family friendly marketplaces.

  • Geebo 9:09 am on April 11, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: Oscar Munoz, , United Airlines   

    United Airlines forcibly removes passenger from plane, was within their right 

    United Airlines forcibly removes passenger from plane, was within their right

    If you’re from a more mature generation, you may remember when United Airlines used to advertise “Fly the friendly skies”. Those skies weren’t very friendly over the weekend when O’Hare Airport Police forcibly removed a passenger from a flight from Chicago to Louisville, Kentucky. Reports say that United had overbooked the flight and needed four passengers to disembark in order for a group of crew members to go to Louisville. Passengers were offered $800 in vouchers for anyone to volunteer to take a later flight. There weren’t enough passengers who took the offer so passengers were picked at random and relieved of their seats. One gentleman was said to have protested claiming that he was a doctor who needed to see patients in Louisville the next morning. Someone at the airline wasn’t having it and airport police were called to remove the man from the plane. The man was somehow bloodied while police attempted to remove him. The thing is though, the airline was completely within their rights.

    (WARNING: The following video may be disturbing to some)

    Now, while the airline may have been well within their rights to have that man removed from the plane, it’s obvious that it could have been handled in a much better way. It didn’t help that United CEO Oscar Munoz posted the following on Twitter.

    Re-accommodate is putting it mildly. While it’s more than likely Mr. Munoz was advised by his legal team on what to say, this only threw gasoline on the proverbial fire. Many consumers and travelers are already calling for a boycott of United. Between a boycott, and one would have to imagine a lawsuit, this could be financially damaging to the already struggling airline.

    If you ever find yourself being removed from an overbooked flight after anyone fails to volunteer, you are not only entitled to reimbursement, but you could be reimbursed to up to four times the value of your ticket.

  • Geebo 8:58 am on April 10, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: ,   

    YouTube now says channels need 10,000 views to make money 

    YouTube now says channels need 10,000 views to make money

    In the wake of ads from major advertisers being shown alongside videos from hate groups and terrorists, YouTube has decided to revamp the way their creators make money. In a peculiar move, YouTube now says that in order for their content creators to be able to monetize their videos, a channel would need at least 10,000 views before being considered for YouTube’s Partnership Program.

    After a channel reaches the required views, YouTube then reviews the content of the channel to make sure it fits their community guidelines. YouTube is saying that this will help keep major advertisers off of channels that consist of stolen content. However, one can safely assume that the hate speech that collects on the video sharing platform has to have had a major influence on YouTube making this decision.

    While this new policy will more than likely please advertisers it doesn’t do much to stop the problems of hate speech and stolen content. Those channels will continue to persist whether or not there’s advertising on their videos due to the fact that they’re based more on a philosophy than a money-making strategy.

    Who this will really hurt are new creators. It’s already difficult for creators to make a name for themselves in a space that’s already crowded with personalities that are pulling in millions of views. Someone who may have a unique perspective, or talent, or voice that could benefit from YouTube, may quit out of frustration if they don’t meet the required number of views to even be considered for payment. When it comes to advertising, it’s usually the consumer that gets hurt worst, but then again there is the modern adage that if you’re using a platform that’s free, you’re not the customer, but the product.

  • Geebo 8:59 am on April 7, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , revenge porn   

    Facebook’s new plan to fight revenge photos has one major flaw 

    Facebook's new plan to fight revenge photos has one major flaw

    The omnipresent Facebook announced that they will be taking new steps to try to prevent what’s known as ‘revenge porn’. These are usually pictures, mostly of women, that were either taken during romantic moments, or taken without their permission that are then posted on social media as a way of the spurned getting back at the ex. Facebook being the top dog in the social network hierarchy sees a lot of this being posted on their site.

    Now, Facebook says that they’ll be implementing photo recognition software to keep such images off their pages. That sounds great in theory, but there’s a major flaw in their approach to this problem: someone needs to report the picture first. It will then be added to a database where Facebook says it will be blocked from being posted across all its properties, including Instagram and WhatsApp.

    The problem with this approach is in most cases these photos are posted to private groups, like the infamous Marines United, where the victims, or anyone with a conscience, won’t have access to the photos to report them.

    If this process sounds a little familiar it’s because it’s very similar to craigslist’s ‘community policing’ where they expect the users to report ads for illegal content. Instead the flagging option in craigslist is abused in so many ways it’s become virtually pointless.

    With Facebook’s and craigslist’s recent joint effort to combat fake news, it seems like they’re putting their heads together on how to make it look like they’re solving a problem without really doing anything about it.

  • Geebo 8:58 am on April 6, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: egg, , Mastodon,   

    By dropping the egg, Twitter claims to combat harassment 

    By dropping the egg, Twitter claims to combat harassment

    Twitter recently announced that they were dropping the default egg avatar for new users, and replacing it with a generic silhouette. They say that the new avatar is a more pleasing aesthetic, but they also claim that it will curb harassment and bullying by trolls and anonymous users.

    In recent months, the Twitter egg has come to symbolize the hordes of anonymous users who sign up for multiple accounts used solely for the purpose of harassing others. One such infamous incident is when Saturday Night Live cast member Leslie Jones was harassed by racist and misogynist Twitter users who were using scores of anonymous accounts with the egg avatar. To put it bluntly, if Twitter thinks that by changing the default avatar from one generic one to another is going to curb harassment, it’s obvious that they are greatly mistaken. The trolls and their ilk will continue to just use the default avatar whether it’s an egg or a shadow because they’ll put minimal effort into opening new accounts used only for harassment.

    Since Twitter has largely failed to do anything about its harassment problem a different social network has seen a spike in users, possibly due to their policies that distance themselves from Twitter in this aspect. Mastodon has implemented a policy that specifically bans those who espouse the views of Nazis. Since the open-source service is based in Germany, German law specifically bans Nazi iconography and Holocaust denial. Mastodon has also implemented other features that are designed to discourage harassment by offering better privacy controls among other options.

    Is Mastodon or any other Twitter clone on the precipice of taking over the social network market? Not really. However, if Twitter continues to descend into a quagmire of persecution without any intervention on Twitter’s behalf, then its userbase could splinter off into other avenues, leaving it a more recent equivalent of MySpace.

  • Geebo 10:01 am on April 5, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , , , Stadiums   

    The Raiders moving to Vegas is a symptom of a much larger disease 

    The Raiders moving to Vegas is a symptom of a much larger disease

    When it came to the NFL, for many years the city of Los Angeles was always a bridesmaid but never a bride. Whenever an NFL team wanted their city to chip in public money for a new stadium, the team would always threaten to move to L.A. Two teams finally made good on those threats when St. Louis and San Diego told the Rams and Chargers respectively, to take a hike. L.A. went from being a the biggest major market without a football team, to having two teams in less than a year. At one time, the Raiders themselves were in an agreement with the Chargers to share a stadium in L.A. with their AFC West rivals.

    Now with the second largest media market out of reach, where could the Raiders threaten to go to try to get a new stadium out of Oak Town’s coffers? With Los Angeles being at capacity Las Vegas became the next logical market to court. While not as large a market as Los Angeles, or even Baltimore, Las Vegas does attract many travelers from across the country to its glitzy attractions.

    The problem here is that it seems more than likely that the Raiders had no intention of staying in Oakland. Former Raiders and 49ers Hall of Fame player Ronnie Lott headed a business consortium that not only would have created a smaller but more modern and lucrative stadium, but the City of Oakland itself agreed to the deal and had promised to kick in a share of the cost. It would have been a new stadium with luxury suites and plenty of space for concessions which the aging Oakland Coliseum is said to have lacked. It also would have kept the stadium in the same relative area as the Coliseum. However, Raiders owner Mark Davis, and his haircut, had been visiting Las Vegas for the past year, entering into talks with various businessmen including local billionaire Sheldon Adelson. Even when Adelson pulled out of helping the Raiders financially in their move to Vegas, Davis went full speed ahead with the move anyway. while it’s not the Colts moving out of Baltimore in the middle of the night, it’s still an egregious show of disrespect to the Raider faithful. To make matters worse, Davis has sent out e-mails to Raiders ticket holders to make their deposits now for their games in Vegas. That’s a 9 hour drive at over 500 miles, which basically shows that the Raiders don’t want the lunch pail fans, but more of the wine and cheese crowd which goes against everything the Raiders have stood for in the past.

    Therein lies the problem with the modern NFL, it hasn’t been about the fans for years now. It’s all about the owners and their greed. The NFL owners voted almost unanimously to approve the Raiders’ move to Vegas. The lone holdout was Miami Dolphins’ owner Stephen Ross, who used private money to renovate the Dolphins’ stadium. With the exception of stadium stalwarts like Lambeau Field in Green Bay or Soldier Field in Chicago, stadiums have become largely disposable. Stadiums that had been previously thought of as hallowed grounds like Three Rivers in Pittsburgh and Texas Stadium in Dallas have all fallen to the proverbial wrecking ball, however, in those cases at least the teams stayed in their markets. Who’s to say that with the current climate among NFL owners we wouldn’t one day see the Portland Steelers or the San Antonio Cowboys? In a few years the new sign of urban, and in some cases suburban, blight will be the carcasses of old sports stadiums littered across the country. While the Raiders may have not been the first to eschew their fans in pursuit of the almighty dollar, they’re certainly a huge part of a much larger problem that one day just may price the NFL out of existence.

  • Geebo 10:00 am on April 4, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: , ,   

    Facebook and craigslist team up to fight fake news, not notice irony 

    Facebook and craigslist team up to fight fake news, not notice irony

    Since the 2016 Presidential Election, ‘fake news’ has been the story that’s refused to die with Facebook being ground zero for most fake stories that are perpetrated on the internet. In the past Facebook has taken steps to combat this problem without really fixing anything in our opinion. Now Facebook must be absolutely serious about the problem because they’ve teamed up with that bastion of truth and integrity, craigslist. Sarcasm fully intended, by the way.

    While we’ve been over this before, but it bears repeating. With Facebook, anyone can post just about anything no matter how libelous it may be, pay to get the story boosted, then when the story turns out to be blatantly false, it takes nothing short than an act of God to get the story removed. As for craigslist, you can post an ad for just about anything including, but not limited to, revenge ads soliciting the sexual assault of just about any person you feel has wronged you. That’s not including the paranoid, racist and otherwise hate-filled scribes that inhabit the rants and raves section.

    Both sites, and their founders by extension, are acting like they’re standing on some kind of moral high ground. In reality the high ground their standing on is the mountain of lies perpetrated by their users and encouraged by the sites themselves.

  • Geebo 10:02 am on April 3, 2017 Permalink | Reply
    Tags: April Fools Day, ,   

    Snapchat wins April Fools Day at Instagram’s expense 

    Snapchat wins April Fools Day at Instagram's expense

    April Fools Day used to be a fun day on the internet. Websites would create jokes, but they were actually clever and enjoyable. For example, Google changed their name to Topeka for April 1st, 2010 after the capital city of Kansas changed its name to Google for a day in an attempt to get Google Fiber. In April of 2009, ThinkGeek posted on their website that they would be offering a Star Wars Tauntaun sleeping bag. If you’ll recall, one of the characters had to sleep inside one of the beasts to prevent himself from freezing to death. The concept was so well done that ThinkGeek actually ended up offering the item later on in the year. Then everyone on the internet felt they needed to get in on the act. The jokes became stale, predictable, or just downright unfunny. That was until this past weekend.

    While most of 2017’s April Fools Day jokes largely went unnoticed, one particular prank was able to garner headlines over the weekend. Snapchat is the photo and video sharing app that has taken over the internet by storm. Many reports have come out and said that Snapchat has more daily active users than Twitter. Facebook owned Instagram has been accused of out and out stealing features from Snapchat, such as the Snapchat Stories feature. Instagram reportedly didn’t even bother to change the name, calling their feature Instagram Stories.

    Over the weekend, Snapchat decided to turn the tables on Instagram. After taking a picture through the Snapchat app, one of the filters made your picture look just like an Instagram photo that is fictitiously liked by only one person, your mom. This is actually a clever prank because not only does take a meaningful but fun jab at Instagram but it’s not mean or annoying to their users. While it’s unlikely that future April Fools Days won’t just be ‘Turn Off the Internet Day’, it is nice to see that not everyone has lost all their creativity.

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