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Archive for the ‘policy’ category

Oct 19, 2021

Real-Time Bidding: The Ad Industry Has Crossed A Very Dangerous Line

Posted by in categories: business, economics, ethics, policy

This post is a collaboration with Dr. Augustine Fou, a seasoned digital marketer, who helps marketers audit their campaigns for ad fraud and provides alternative performance optimization solutions; and Jodi Masters-Gonzales, Research Director at Beacon Trust Network and a doctoral student in Pepperdine University’s Global Leadership and Change program, where her research intersects at data privacy & ethics, public policy, and the digital economy.

The ad industry has gone through a massive transformation since the advent of digital. This is a multi-billion dollar industry that started out as a way for businesses to bring more market visibility to products and services more effectively, while evolving features that would allow advertisers to garner valuable insights about their customers and prospects. Fast-forward 20 years later and the promise of better ad performance and delivery of the right customers, has also created and enabled a rampant environment of massive data sharing, more invasive personal targeting and higher incidences of consumer manipulation than ever before. It has evolved over time, underneath the noses of business and industry, with benefits realized by a relative few. How did we get here? More importantly, can we curb the path of a burgeoning industry to truly protect people’s data rights?

There was a time when advertising inventory was finite. Long before digital, buying impressions was primarily done through offline publications, television and radio. Premium slots commanded higher CPM (cost per thousand) rates to obtain the most coveted consumer attention. The big advertisers with the deepest pockets largely benefitted from this space by commanding the largest reach.

Oct 16, 2021

How to Talk to a Science Denier — with Lee McIntyre

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, climatology, education, ethics, finance, policy, science, sustainability

Many people reject scientific expertise and prefer ideology to facts. Lee McIntyre argues that anyone can and should fight back against science deniers.
Watch the Q&A: https://youtu.be/2jTiXCLzMv4
Lee’s book “How to Talk to a Science Denier” is out now: https://geni.us/leemcintyre.

“Climate change is a hoax—and so is coronavirus.” “Vaccines are bad for you.” Many people may believe such statements, but how can scientists and informed citizens convince these ‘science deniers’ that their beliefs are mistaken?

Continue reading “How to Talk to a Science Denier — with Lee McIntyre” »

Oct 9, 2021

Common Chemicals in Electronics and Baby Products Harm Brain Development

Posted by in categories: chemistry, neuroscience, policy

“The use of organophosphate esters in everything from TVs to car seats has proliferated under the false assumption that they’re safe,” said Heather Patisaul, lead author and neuroendocrinologist at North Carolina State University. “Unfortunately, these chemicals appear to be just as harmful as the chemicals they’re intended to replace but act by a different mechanism.”


Summary: Exposure to even low levels of common chemicals called organophosphate esters can harm IQ, memory, learning, and brain development overall in young children.

Source: Green Science Policy Institute

Continue reading “Common Chemicals in Electronics and Baby Products Harm Brain Development” »

Oct 8, 2021

Americans Need a Bill of Rights for an AI-Powered World

Posted by in category: policy

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy is developing principles to guard against powerful technologies—with input from the public.

Oct 5, 2021

Eric G Meyer — Founder & Director — Generation Atomic — Advanced Nuclear Power Advocacy For Humanity

Posted by in categories: climatology, media & arts, nuclear energy, policy

Advanced Nuclear Power Advocacy For Humanity — Eric G. Meyer, Founder & Director, Generation Atomic


Eric G. Meyer is the Founder and Director of Generation Atomic (https://generationatomic.org/), a nuclear advocacy non-profit which he founded after hearing about the promise of advanced nuclear reactors, and he decided to devote his life to saving and expanding the use of atomic energy.

Continue reading “Eric G Meyer — Founder & Director — Generation Atomic — Advanced Nuclear Power Advocacy For Humanity” »

Oct 3, 2021

Could Autonomous Robots Be More Dangerous than Nukes?

Posted by in categories: biological, chemistry, law, military, policy, robotics/AI

Without a new legal framework, they could destabilize societal norms.


Autonomous weapon systems – commonly known as killer robots – may have killed human beings for the first time ever last year, according to a recent United Nations Security Council report on the Libyan civil war. History could well identify this as the starting point of the next major arms race, one that has the potential to be humanity’s final one.

Autonomous weapon systems are robots with lethal weapons that can operate independently, selecting and attacking targets without a human weighing in on those decisions. Militaries around the world are investing heavily in autonomous weapons research and development. The U.S. alone budgeted US$18 billion for autonomous weapons between 2016 and 2020.

Continue reading “Could Autonomous Robots Be More Dangerous than Nukes?” »

Sep 30, 2021

EXCLUSIVE PwC offers U.S. employees full-time remote work

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, policy

Accounting and consulting firm PwC told Reuters on Thursday it will allow all its 40,000 U.S. client services employees to work virtually and live anywhere they want in perpetuity, making it one of the biggest employers to embrace permanent remote work.

The policy is a departure from the accounting industry’s rigid attitudes, known for encouraging people to put in late nights at the office. Other major accounting firms, such as Deloitte and KPMG, have also been giving employees more choice to work remotely in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Sep 29, 2021

An autonomous robot may have already killed people — here’s how the weapons could be more destabilizing than nukes

Posted by in categories: biological, chemistry, military, policy, robotics/AI

Autonomous weapon systems – commonly known as killer robots – may have killed human beings for the first time ever last year, according to a recent United Nations Security Council report on the Libyan civil war. History could well identify this as the starting point of the next major arms race, one that has the potential to be humanity’s final one.

Autonomous weapon systems are robots with lethal weapons that can operate independently, selecting and attacking targets without a human weighing in on those decisions. Militaries around the world are investing heavily in autonomous weapons research and development. The U.S. alone budgeted US$18 billion for autonomous weapons between 2016 and 2020.

Meanwhile, human rights and humanitarian organizations are racing to establish regulations and prohibitions on such weapons development. Without such checks, foreign policy experts warn that disruptive autonomous weapons technologies will dangerously destabilize current nuclear strategies, both because they could radically change perceptions of strategic dominance, increasing the risk of preemptive attacks, and because they could become combined with chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear weapons themselves.

Sep 18, 2021

AI will ‘exacerbate’ wealth inequality and help ultra-rich: Ex-Google exec

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government, policy, robotics/AI

A dress worn this week by Democratic Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), which bore the message “tax the rich,” set off a wave of debate over how best to address wealth inequality, as Congress weighs a $3.5 trillion spending bill that includes tax hikes on corporations and high-earning individuals.

The debate coincides with the ongoing pandemic in which billionaires, many of whom are tech company founders, have added $1.8 trillion in wealth while consumers have come to depend increasingly on services like e-commerce and teleconference, according to a report released last month by the Institute for Policy Studies.

In a new interview, artificial intelligence expert Kai Fu-Lee — who worked as an executive at Google (GOOG, GOOGL), Apple (AAPL), and Microsoft (MSFT) — attributed the rise of wealth inequality in part to the tech boom in recent decades, predicting that the trend will worsen in coming years with the continued emergence of AI.

Continue reading “AI will ‘exacerbate’ wealth inequality and help ultra-rich: Ex-Google exec” »

Sep 17, 2021

Neurologist Explores Link Between COVID and “Brain Fog,” Memory Loss and Dementia

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, neuroscience, policy

A new Rutgers study will examine how COVID-19 is affecting individuals in a number of cognitive-related areas, including memory loss, “brain fog,” and dementia.

“Many people who recover from mild or moderate COVID-19 notice slowed thinking or memory loss, and this motivated us to leverage our experience in studying cognitive issues related to Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, and HIV to examine this phenomenon,” said Dr. William T. Hu, associate professor and chief of cognitive neurology at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and the Institute for Health, Health Care Policy, and Aging Research.

A leading cognitive neurologist and neuroscientist, Dr. Hu is spearheading the characterization of cognitive impairment following mild-to-moderate COVID-19 at Rutgers.

Continue reading “Neurologist Explores Link Between COVID and ‘Brain Fog,’ Memory Loss and Dementia” »

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