Scientist says Solar Storms are increasing with possibility of creating chaos like the 1859 Carrington Event

Solare Flare

Important Takeaways:

  • Solar superstorm could ‘wipe out the internet’ for weeks or months, scientist says
  • The power grid, satellites, underground fiber optic cable with copper sheaths, navigation and GPS systems, radio transmitters and communications equipment are all vulnerable.
  • It has happened before. Becker points to the Carrington Event in 1859. That was the last time a CME reached Earth.
  • The heavy-duty wires of the telegraph were robust compared to the fragile electronics of today, he said.
  • “So you lay that on top of the internet with its very delicate electronics, you’re talking about something that could really fry the system for a period of several weeks to months in terms of the time it would take to repair all the infrastructure – all of the electronic switches, all of these closets of electronics in all these office buildings,” Becker said. “That could all be fried. So we’re talking pretty major. And it’s not just communications. It’s economic disruption, too, obviously.”
  • An economic disruption to the tune of $10-$20 billion per day to the U.S. economy alone, Becker estimated.
  • The solar cycle is peaking making solar storms more plentiful
  • Becker said predicting solar storms is like predicting earthquakes – we just don’t have control over the situation. He said that the odds are about 10% that over the next decade, “something really large is going to happen that could potentially wipe out the internet.”

Read the original article by clicking here.

Cash is King no more as shoppers embrace internet purchases

Jon Cunliffe

Revelations 13:16-18 “Also it causes all, both small and great, both rich and poor, both free and slave, to be marked on the right hand or the forehead, so that no one can buy or sell unless he has the mark, that is, the name of the beast or the number of its name. This calls for wisdom: let the one who has understanding calculate the number of the beast, for it is the number of a man, and his number is 666.”

Important Takeaways:

  • Cash is to become “less useable” as shoppers embrace the internet and high street stores increasingly reject bank notes, the deputy governor of the Bank of England has warned.
  • it is therefore essential for Threadneedle Street to press ahead with developing an electronic version of sterling – the so-called digital pound – which can underpin future confidence in the financial system
  • Card payments took over cash as the most dominant form of payment for retail in 2016. By 2021, 85pc of payments were made electronically, through either card payments or bank transfers.
  • Nine in 10 people use contactless payments and nearly a third of all UK adults now use mobile payment apps such as ApplePay and GooglePay.
  • It is now commonplace for stores in major cities to be cashless.

Read the original article by clicking here.

‘Woefully lax’: report slams CIA cybersecurity after hacking tool leak

By Raphael Satter

(Reuters) – Many of the Central Intelligence Agency’s most sensitive hacking tools were so poorly secured that it was only when WikiLeaks published them online in 2017 that the agency realized they had been compromised, according to a report released Tuesday.

The secret-spilling site drew international attention when it dumped a vast trove of malicious CIA code on the internet in March 2017.

The digital tools, sometimes described as “cyber weapons,” provided a granular look at how the CIA conducts its international hacking operations. It also deeply embarrassed the U.S. intelligence community, which has repeatedly been hit by large-scale leaks over the past decade.

An internal CIA report dated October 2017 and released by Democratic U.S. Senator Ron Wyden on Tuesday described security at the agency’s Center for Cyber Intelligence – the unit responsible for designing the tools – as “woefully lax.”

“Most of our sensitive cyber weapons were not compartmented, users shared systems administrator-level passwords, there were no effective removable media controls, and historical data was available to users indefinitely,” the report said. It described the WikiLeaks disclosure as “the largest data loss in CIA history.”

The CIA declined to comment specifically on the report, saying only that it “works to incorporate best-in-class technologies” to keep ahead of security threats.

The report, drawn up by the CIA’s WikiLeaks Task Force, was heavily redacted, but it called out failures at the Center for Cyber Intelligence, which the report’s authors said was too focused on building hacking tools rather than securing them.

In a letter accompanying the report, Wyden suggested that the weaknesses highlighted by the report “do not appear to be limited to just one part of the intelligence community,” which he said was “still lagging behind.”

(Reporting by Raphael Satter; editing by Jonathan Oatis)

Coronavirus school shutdowns threaten to deepen U.S. ‘digital divide’

By Joseph Ax

(Reuters) – Liz Peasley, a special education aide in the rural Grand Coulee Dam School District in Washington State, drives 10 miles from her home on the Colville Indian Reservation just to get a workable cellphone signal.

Now, with schools shut down until the fall because of the coronavirus pandemic, Peasley – who doesn’t own a computer or tablet – is confronting the same dilemma millions of others in the United States are facing: How to ensure kids trapped at home receive some version of an education if they can’t get online.

“I’m super overwhelmed,” said Peasley, who has three kids between the ages of 10 and 13. “I’m a single mom – it’s tough for us on a good day.”

Some 14% of school-age children, or 7 million, live in a home without high-speed internet, many in less populated areas that lack service or in low-income households that cannot afford it, a 2018 Department of Commerce study found.

In many cases, households may rely only on a cellphone, or may share a single device among several children, making it challenging to complete schoolwork even in the best of times.

While the digital divide is not a new phenomenon, the coronavirus outbreak has laid bare the technological inequities that bedevil rural and impoverished school districts, including Grand Coulee, where two-thirds of the approximately 720 students – many Native American – are eligible for free or reduced-price lunch.

Now educators worry those disparities will turn achievement gaps into an “achievement chasm,” in the words of Michele Orner, the superintendent of the rural Octorara Area School District in Pennsylvania.

Some districts have reverted to earlier technologies, with staffers delivering paper packets along with meals for needy families. Some schools have stationed buses transmitting mobile wireless signals in neighborhoods; others have encouraged students to park near the school on the weekend and use the wireless network to download necessary materials.

But officials warn some kids will be left behind no matter what. Those concerns have only deepened as the coronavirus-forced hiatus has grown from weeks to months.

Thirty-seven states have either mandated or recommended that public schools serving more than 40 million students remain closed for the rest of the academic year, according to a running tally by the news publication Education Week.

Some states have already warned their schools may not reopen after summer. Washington State Governor Jay Inslee, for instance, encouraged school officials to start preparing in case the shutdown stretches into the fall.


The U.S. government provides some $4 billion each year to schools and libraries to increase broadband access, but the program does not permit them to use funding to extend offsite access.

“Those students that can’t do online learning are falling further behind,” said John Windhausen, the executive director of the Schools, Health & Libraries Broadband Coalition. “It’s going to cause a real problem, because the skills that students learn (in class) build off of each other.”

The risks are particularly acute for students with special education needs, including those who have individualized instruction plans that may not be suited for distance learning.

Some districts have hesitated to transition fully online out of fear that doing so would expose them to legal liability for failing to provide equitable education to all students. The Northshore School District in Washington State, one of the first in the country to close in early March, launched an online program immediately but put it on hold for two weeks to address equity concerns.

A lack of training or equipment means many rural or low-income districts are also less able to rely on online instruction.

“The degree of being able to move to online learning at a moment’s notice is totally dependent on the wealth of the district,” said Daniel Domenech, the executive director of the national School Superintendents Association. “At best, maybe 40 or 50% of districts are able to do that.”

In Bronxville, the affluent New York City suburb that saw the state’s first major outbreak in March, the school district has many advantages that poorer systems do not: Engaged parents, a student population that has near-universal internet access, and plenty of laptops to distribute to families in need.

“I’m in a fortunate district,” said Schools Superintendent Roy Montesano.

Many others are not so fortunate.

In Pennsylvania’s Octorara district, where students receive a Chromebook laptop starting in seventh grade, Orner, the superintendent, said she concluded that going back to pencil and paper would shortchange her kids.

Around one-quarter of her students lack high-speed Internet access, so the district recently bought 100 iPhones – Orner secured a $9,500 emergency state grant to cover the cost – for students to use as mobile hotspots.

But she acknowledged that the most vulnerable students are also the likeliest to fall behind even further.

“We talk about the summer slide,” she said, referring to the months between school academic years that sometimes causes students to slip backward. “Imagine the summer slide on steroids.”

As school districts grapple with new challenges, they look for solutions wherever they can. Grand Coulee Dam just started to employ some distance learning this week by setting up Google Classroom for those families able to access it and loaning out some Chromebooks, even as it continues to rely on pencil and paper classwork for students without internet.

Those packets, however, have to be carefully curated to ensure kids in poor households have everything they need.

“You want them to measure something, you better put in a ruler,” said Pam Johnson, a ninth-grade Grand Coulee Dam teacher. “You want them to color something, you better throw in a packet of crayons.”

(Reporting by Joseph Ax in New York; Editing by Scott Malone and Aurora Ellis)

Assange tried to call White House, Hillary Clinton over data dump, his lawyer says

By Michael Holden

LONDON (Reuters) – Julian Assange tried to contact Hillary Clinton and the White House when he realized that unredacted U.S. diplomatic cables given to WikiLeaks were about to be dumped on the internet, his lawyer told his London extradition hearing on Tuesday.

Assange is being sought by the United States on 18 counts of hacking U.S. government computers and an espionage offense, having allegedly conspired with Chelsea Manning, then a U.S. soldier known as Bradley Manning, to leak hundreds of thousands of secret documents by WikiLeaks almost a decade ago.

On Monday, the lawyer representing the United States told the hearing that Assange, 48, was wanted for crimes that had endangered people in Iraq, Iran and Afghanistan who had helped the West, some of whom later disappeared.

U.S. authorities say his actions in recklessly publishing unredacted classified diplomatic cables put informants, dissidents, journalists and human rights activists at risk of torture, abuse or death.

Outlining part of his defense, Assange’s lawyer Mark Summers said allegations that he had helped Manning to break a government password, had encouraged the theft of secret data and knowingly put lives in danger were “lies, lies and more lies”.

He told London’s Woolwich Crown Court that WikiLeaks had received documents from Manning in April 2010. He then made a deal with a number of newspapers, including the New York Times, Britain’s Guardian and Germany’s Der Spiegel, to begin releasing redacted parts of the 250,000 cables in November that year.

A witness from Der Spiegel said the U.S. State Department had been involved in suggesting redactions in conference calls, Summers said.

However, a password that allowed access to the full unredacted material was published in a book by a Guardian reporter about WikiLeaks in February 2011. In August, another German newspaper reported it had discovered the password and it had access to the archive.


Summers said Assange attempted to warn the U.S. government, calling the White House and attempting to speak to then- Secretary of State Clinton, saying “unless we do something, people’s lives are put at risk”.

Summers said the State Department had responded by suggesting that Assange call back “in a couple of hours”.

The United States asked Britain to extradite Assange last year after he was pulled from the Ecuador embassy in London, where he had spent seven years holed up avoiding extradition to Sweden over sex crime allegations which have since been dropped.

Assange has served a prison sentence in Britain for skipping bail and remains jailed pending the U.S. extradition request

Supporters hail Assange as an anti-establishment hero who revealed governments’ abuses of power, and argue the action against him is a dangerous infringement of journalists’ rights. Critics cast him as a dangerous enemy of the state who has undermined Western security.

(Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Gareth Jones)

Strip searches and ads: 10 tech and privacy hot spots for 2020

By Umberto Bacchi

TBILISI (Thomson Reuters Foundation) – From whether governments should use facial recognition for surveillance to what data internet giants should be allowed to collect, 2019 was marked by a heated global debate around privacy and technology.

The Thomson Reuters Foundation asked 10 privacy experts what issues will shape the conversation in 2020:

1. CALIFORNIA DIGITAL PRIVACY LAW – Cindy Cohn, executive director, Electronic Frontier Foundation

“A California law giving consumers more control over their personal information, like the right to know what data businesses have collected about them, to delete it and to opt-out of its sale comes into effect on Jan. 1, 2020.

The legislation could have a ripple effect across the United States, or lead to the passage of a federal law.

This could be good news, if a federal law was to mandate some basic privacy guarantees that states could improve on – or bad news, if it was to instead block stronger state laws.”

2. DIGITAL STRIP SEARCHES – Silkie Carlo, director, Big Brother Watch

“From where we have been to who we have spoken to, our phones contain mountains of data that is increasingly sought after by police during investigations. So-called “digital strip searches”, where crime victims are asked to hand over their phones, are becoming common place all around the world.

In Britain, victims of rape are now routinely required to give police full downloads of their phones, and police can keep the data for 100 years. It’s no coincidence that almost 50% of victims are dropping their cases.

There’s no law in the UK around this and it’s likely we’ll see a showdown between police, data regulators and privacy advocates in 2020.”

3. FACIAL RECOGNITION – Jameson Spivack, policy associate, centre on privacy & technology, Georgetown Law Centre

“In 2019, face recognition technology became an integral part of the public debate about privacy, as people realized just how much of a risk this technology poses to civil rights and liberties.

Public officials have responded, with bans and proposed regulation at all levels of government. These conversations will come to a head in 2020.

In the U.S. this could mean new federal, state, or local policies around how law enforcement is allowed to use (or not use) face recognition; rules for companies developing the technology; and/or increased enforcement action from entities like the Federal Trade Commission or state attorneys general.”

4. BEHAVIOURAL ADVERTISING – Karolina Iwanska, lawyer, Panoptykon Foundation

“A wave of complaints against the use of personal information to target advertising online have been filed with data authorities across the European Union over the past two years.

The Irish data protection authority – which is a lead authority for Google – started an investigation into the company’s advertising business and the British ICO has published a damning report on the ad-tech industry.

2020 should bring much needed decisions in these cases, potentially leading to fines and further restrictions on companies’ use of people’s data.”

5. EU BUDGET – Edin Omanovic, advocacy director, Privacy International

“Next year, the EU will decide its budget for the years 2021-2028. How it will spend what is likely to be in excess of 1 trillion euro ($1.10 trillion) will have a transformative impact not just on its residents, but around the world.

For the first time, it will spend more on migration control than on developing Africa, often involving some sort of surveillance, which could pose huge threats to privacy and other human rights.”

6. AI TECHNOLOGIES – Diego Naranjo, head of policy, European Digital Rights

“A 2019 report on facial recognition by the EU’s rights agency represented a crucial step in the debate that we as societies need to have prior to deploying such technologies, which affect privacy, data protection, and other rights.

We could end up implementing practices in Europe which horrify us when they are implemented elsewhere, for example in China.

This conversation, as well as examining the impact of other technologies, like the potential discriminatory impact of “AI-based lie detectors” on vulnerable groups, such as migrants, will be an important part of the debate in 2020.”

7. ALGORITHMS’ DECISION MAKING – Sandra Wachter, professor, Oxford Internet Institute

“The EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) currently focus on things like transparency, consent and notification of data collection, but not on how we are evaluated after data is collected.

This means users have few rights to challenge or contest how they are assessed by algorithms processing their information, which is worrisome since our digital identity steers our paths in lives and impacts our opportunities.

In 2020, the EU’s data watchdog will publish several recommendations on how to improve data rights. This is a great opportunity to give guidance to transform the GDPR, introducing more controls over how algorithms evaluate us.”

8. TARGETED POLITICAL ADS – Matthew Rice, Scotland director, Open Rights Group

“Personal data is becoming ever more central in the operations of political campaigns, as parties buy up commercial data sets in an attempt to derive the voters’ opinions and decide whether to target them online and how.

This practice stretches the limits of data protection laws and strains trust in democratic systems.

With the U.S. Presidential elections taking place in 2020 expect to see a huge amount of attention paid on what personal data parties are using and how they are using it.”

9. BIOMETRICS TECHNOLOGIES – Carly Kind, director, Ada Lovelace Institute

“In 2020 biometrics technologies are likely to come under the serious scrutiny of regulators in Europe (and possibly beyond).

We’re approaching a tipping point in public concern about the increasing ubiquity of facial recognition. In China 84% of people surveyed want the opportunity to review or delete facial data collected about them.

EU authorities have promised facial recognition regulation will be forthcoming in 2020. It is critical that it looks beyond facial recognition to the entire gambit of AI-enabled biometric technologies that will be rolled out in the years to come.”

10. IRELAND’S DATA AUTHORITY – Paul-Olivier Dehaye, co-founder,

“In 2020, Ireland is likely to come under increased pressure from other European countries to take a stronger stance on data protection after years of lax enforcement.

Thanks to the EU’s harmonization mechanisms, the Irish data authority could be compelled to adjust to the stricter parameters used by its EU counterparts when deciding on the growing number of privacy complaints filed by EU citizens.

As Ireland hosts the European headquarters of U.S. technology firms like Facebook and Google, this would have far-reaching consequences across the bloc.”

($1 = 0.9073 euros)

(Reporting by Umberto Bacchi @UmbertoBacchi, Editing by Belinda Goldsmith; Please credit the Thomson Reuters Foundation, the charitable arm of Thomson Reuters, that covers humanitarian news, women’s and LGBT+ rights, human trafficking, property rights, and climate change. Visit

Thailand unveils ‘anti-fake news’ center to police the internet

Thailand unveils ‘anti-fake news’ center to police the internet
By Patpicha Tanakasempipat

BANGKOK (Reuters) – Thailand unveiled an “anti-fake news” center on Friday, the Southeast Asian country’s latest effort to exert government control over a sweeping range of online content.

The move came as Thailand is counting on the digital economy to drive growth amid domestic political tensions, following a March election that installed its junta leader since 2014 as a civilian prime minister.

Thailand has recently pressed more cybercrime charges for what it says is misinformation affecting national security. Such content is mostly opinion critical of the government, the military or the royal family.

Minister of Digital Economy and Society Puttipong Punnakanta broadly defined “fake news” as any viral online content that misleads people or damages the country’s image. He made no distinction between non-malicious false information and deliberate disinformation.

“The center is not intended to be a tool to support the government or any individual,” Puttipong said on Friday before giving reporters a tour.

The center is set up like a war room, with monitors in the middle of the room showing charts tracking the latest “fake news” and trending Twitter hashtags.

It is staffed by around 30 officers at a time, who will review online content – gathered through “social listening” tools – on a sweeping range of topics from natural disasters, the economy, health products and illicit goods.

The officers will also target news about government policies and content that broadly affects “peace and order, good morals, and national security,” according to Puttipong.

If they suspect something is false, they will flag it to relevant authorities to issue corrections through the center’s social media platforms and website and through the press.

Rights groups and media freedom advocates were concerned the government could use the center as a tool for censorship and propaganda.

“In the Thai context, the term ‘fake news’ is being weaponized to censor dissidents and restrict our online freedom,” said Emilie Pradichit, director of the Thailand-based Manushya Foundation, which advocates for online rights.

Pradichit said the move could be used to codify censorship, adding the center would allow the government to be the “sole arbiter of truth”.

Transparency reports from internet companies such as Facebook and Google show Thai government requests to take down content or turn over information have ramped up since the military seized power in 2014.

A law prohibiting criticism of the monarchy has often been the basis for such requests for Facebook. In Google’s cases, government criticism was the main reason cited for removal of content.

(Reporting by Patpicha Tanakasempipat; Editing by Kay Johnson and Frances Kerry)

Cloudflare terminates 8chan as customer on ‘hate-filled’ content: CEO

A man takes part in a rally against hate a day after a mass shooting at a Walmart store, in El Paso, Texas, U.S. August 4, 2019. Graffiti reads "El Paso Is Not Alone" REUTERS/Jose Luis Gonzalez

(Reuters) – U.S. cybersecurity firm Cloudflare on Monday said it would terminate online message board 8chan as a customer after a gunman used the messaging forum prior to killing 20 people at a Walmart store in El Paso, Texas on Saturday.

The gunman is believed to have posted a four-page statement on 8chan, and called the Walmart attack “a response to the Hispanic invasion of Texas”.

Police in the Philippines, where 8chan is hosted, told Reuters they were investigating the messaging board but were unable to give details, such as when the inquiry began and what prompted it.

The suspect was officially identified as a 21-year-old white male from Allen, Texas, a Dallas suburb about 650 miles (1,046 km) east of El Paso, which lies along the Rio Grande, across the U.S.-Mexico border from Ciudad Juarez. Citing law enforcement officials, media named the suspect as Patrick Crusius.

The suspect’s post on 8chan expressed support for the gunman who killed 51 people at two mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, in March.

“We just sent a notice that we are terminating 8chan as a customer effective at midnight tonight Pacific Time,” Cloudflare Chief Executive Matthew Prince said in a blog post.

“Based on evidence we’ve seen, it appears that he (gunman)posted a screed to the site immediately before beginning his terrifying attack.”

Prince’s blog added that while 8chan did not violate the law by not moderating the “hate-filled” content posted by users, it had “created an environment that revels in violating its spirit”.

(Reporting by Sathvik N in Bengaluru; Additional reporting by Karen Lema in MANILA; Editing by Sherry Jacob-Phillips and Clarence Fernandez)

Let’s take the fake out of our news!

The Fake News Highway - Image by John Iglar

By Kami Klein

There was a time when the news wasn’t so confusing.  Before the internet, most families had their morning newspaper delivered conveniently to their door. In order to keep your business or be competitive, newspapers battled over the facts and dug deeper to reach the truth per investigative journalism.  The stories would be presented without opinions but based on legitimate proof. Of course, just as internet news does today, a powerful headline didn’t hurt.  

Once the workday was winding down, the evening news of the day was given through well-respected television journalists such as Walter Cronkite and Tom Brokaw, who presented the unbiased facts, trusting in the abilities of their listeners to ponder and come to their own conclusions.  The news itself was taken quite seriously. The worst thing to happen to a reporter was to be proven or accused of dishonorable reporting. To be respected in the journalism field was the goal and not how many facebook followers or tweet responses happened in a day or whether they have stayed true to their personal beliefs. Becoming a journalist was a calling… not the way to fame.

Suddenly we have the internet highway where everyone can have an opinion, Competition requires all journalism to be the fastest news source which yields little time for investigation or vetting and by presenting a portion of the facts which in many cases is served to the public with a generous amount of opinion gravy poured on top. Conservative or Liberal, it is rare to find an unbiased news source. Add to this confusing issue the hot topic of “Fake News” and it is a wonder any of us really knows what is going on. 

Every day, in social media across the world, fake news is often more prevalent in our feed than those stories that are actually the truth or at least close to it.  These (articles) are spread by the misconception that if it is on the internet, it must be true, or because the story sits right in line with the personal beliefs of the reader, it must be correct.  The share button gets a hit, and the lie continues on its journey. Where we used to be able to hold the reporter or journalist accountable for their information, the responsibility is now ours. In an age where anyone can post a news story, how do we take the fake out of our news? 

There are several kinds of fake news on the internet.  The following information comes from a story written by Called “The Truth about Fake News”. It is important for us to be able to identify and beware of the following:    


  • Propaganda – News stories designed to disparage a candidate, promote a political cause, and mislead voters
  • Sloppy Journalism – Stories containing inaccurate information produced by writers and editors who have not properly vetted a story. Retractions do little to fix the problem, even if there is one since the story has spread and the damage done.
  • Sensationalized Headlines – Often a story may be accurate but comes with a misleading or outrageous headline. Readers may not read past it, but take everything they need to know from this skewed title.
  • Clickbait – These stories are deliberately created to create traffic on a website. Advertising dollars are at stake, and gullible readers fall for it by the millions.
  • Satire – Parody websites like The Onion and The Daily Mash produce satirical stories that are believed by uninformed readers. The stories are written as satire and not meant to be taken literally, but unless you check their website, not everyone will know. 
  • Average Joe Reporting – Sometimes a person will post an eyewitness report that goes viral, but it may or may not be true. The classic example of this was a tweet by Eric Tucker in Austin, Texas in 2015. Posting a picture of a row of charter busses, Tucker surmised and tweeted that Trump protesters were being bussed in to rally against the President-elect. The tweet was picked up by multiple media outlets, and Mr. Trump himself, going viral in a matter of hours. The only problem is, it wasn’t true.

 The 2020 elections are upon us and fake news will be used as a weapon.  False news can destroy lives and ultimately do great harm to our country. 

How do we beat these fakes and stop them?  Here are some tools available to anyone who does not want to be duped by those that are attempting to manipulate for power, creating greater discourse or for money. If we can all take responsibility for what we share, we are one step closer to legitimate news.   



  1.  Pay attention to the domain and URL – many times these sites will make something very close to a trusted news source.  Sites with such endings like should make you raise your eyebrows and tip you off that you need to dig around more to see if they can be trusted. This is true even when the site looks professional and has semi-recognizable logos. For example, is a legitimate news source, but is not, despite its similar appearance.
  2. Read the “About Us” section- Most sites will have a lot of information about the news outlet, the company that runs it, members of leadership, and the mission and ethics statement behind an organization. The language used here is straightforward. If it’s melodramatic and seems overblown, you should be skeptical.  This is where satire sites will let you know that what you are reading is only meant for entertainment. The laugh is then on us when we take what they say as the truth. they are counting on you NOT to check. 
  3. HEADLINES CAN BE MISLEADING!! -Headlines are meant to get the reader’s attention, but they’re also supposed to accurately reflect what the story is about. In fake stories, headlines often will be written in an exaggerated language with the intention of being misleading.  These will then be attached to stories that give half-truth or the story proves that the headline would never or has not actually happened.  
  4. Fact-Checking can be your friend –  Not only is fact-checking smart, looking to see if your particular news story leans to conservative or liberal points of view is just as important. is one of my go-to places.  They also provide a great list of fact-checking sites that are highly recommended. You will also find a wonderful list of news web sites that have been deemed as non-biased. 

  While Facebook and Twitter are being held accountable for much of what is on our social media today, they will only succeed with our help. Together, we can take the fake out of the news and make responsible choices for our future!  


U.S. Democrats unveil legislation to reinstate net neutrality rules

By David Shepardson

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Democrats in Congress unveiled a bill on Wednesday to reinstate net neutrality rules repealed by the Federal Communications Commission under U.S. President Donald Trump, the latest salvo in a more than decade-long battle over how to regulate internet traffic.

The bill mirrors an effort last year to reverse the FCC’s December 2017 order repealing landmark rules approved in 2015 that barred internet providers from blocking or slowing content or offering paid “fast lanes.”

“It is a fight that we can win,” said Senator Ed Markey, a bill sponsor, at a Capitol Hill news conference. “We are on the right side of history. We will not give up.”

He said the bill, dubbed the “Save the Internet Act,” will protect consumers from higher prices, blocked websites or slower internet speeds.

The reversal of net neutrality rules was a win for internet providers like Comcast Corp, AT&T Inc and Verizon Communications Inc, but opposed by content and social media companies like Facebook Inc, Inc and Alphabet Inc.

The bill would repeal the order introduced by FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, bar the FCC from reinstating it or a substantially similar order and reinstate the 2015 net neutrality order, a fact sheet said.

Pai said in a statement that the 2017 rule “has proven wrong the many hysterical predictions of doom … most notably the fantasy that market-based regulation would bring about ‘the end of the Internet as we know it.’”

He suggested that the main thing the internet needs to be saved from is “heavy-handed regulation from the 1930s” that would treat it as a public utility.

Markey said the bill has the support of nearly all Democrats, and a companion bill will be introduced in the House of Representatives on Friday. Democrats say they expect the House will vote on the bill in the next few months.

Republicans oppose reinstating the 2015 rules that grant the FCC sweeping authority to oversee the conduct of internet providers.

House Republicans Greg Walden, Bob Latta and Cathy McMorris Rodgers said in a statement that both parties believe “a free and open internet is fundamental to our society.”

“All sides want a permanent solution,” they said.

Representative Frank Pallone, a Democrat who chairs the Energy and Commerce Committee, said the FCC ignored the will of the American people in repealing the rules.

The Senate, which is controlled by Republicans, voted in May 2018 to reinstate the rules, but the House did not take up the issue before Congress adjourned last year.

A U.S. federal appeals court last month held lengthy oral arguments in a legal challenge to the FCC’s decision. That court upheld the Obama internet rules in 2016.

In its 2017 decision, the Republican-led FCC voted 3-2 along party lines. The agency gave providers sweeping power to recast how users access the internet but said they must disclose changes in internet access.

(Reporting by David Shepardson; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama and Meredith Mazzilli)