Kashmir Hill's posts - Chinese uPOST

Pray for the Souls of the People Sucked Into This Dating Site Hell Pray for the Souls of the People Sucked Into This Dating Site Hell

Earlier this year, the media got very excited about Trump.dating, a site for the pro-Donald set that promised to “make dating great again.” Much of the media coverage was critical: The site only allowed users to conduct heterosexual searches; the male-half of the couple originally featured on the homepage had a child…

How to Plan a Wedding in Three Weeks How to Plan a Wedding in Three Weeks

If you have spent your whole life dreaming of getting married while wearing an ivory princess gown paired with a lacy cathedral bridal veil, surrounded by 500 of your nearest and dearest friends, this is not the blog for you. But if you like the idea of actually having a good time on your wedding day and in the period…

The Other Cambridge Personality Test Has Its Own Database With Millions of Facebook Profiles The Other Cambridge Personality Test Has Its Own Database With Millions of Facebook Profiles

Unless you’ve been hiding under a rock on Mars, you’ve likely heard about a little scandal involving Cambridge Analytica and Facebook. Cambridge Analytica got its hands on millions of people’s Facebook likes in 2014 by getting an academic, Aleksander Kogan, to design an app with a personality test that hoovered up…

How Conservative Activists Catfished Twitter

Mo Norai has worked in Silicon Valley for a decade. He’s done stints at Google, Twitter, Facebook, and Apple, but only as a contract worker, meaning he has missed out on the tech giants’ storied perks, benefits and job security. So when he was approached last April by a recruiter from a company called Tech Jobs Box…

How a $90 Vet Bill Can Ruin Someone's Life How a $90 Vet Bill Can Ruin Someone's Life

Over the past five years, Mondrea Hasty has had officers come to his house multiple times to arrest him, had his mugshot taken, and been handcuffed during a routine traffic stop. His 10-year-old daughter now cries when she sees a person in a police uniform, fearing they could be coming for her father.

The House That Spied on Me The House That Spied on Me

In December, I converted my one-bedroom apartment in San Francisco into a “smart home.” I connected as many of my appliances and belongings as I could to the internet: an Amazon Echo, my lights, my coffee maker, my baby monitor, my kid’s toys, my vacuum, my TV, my toothbrush, a photo frame, a sex toy, and even my bed.

Facebook Knows How to Track You Using the Dust on Your Camera Lens Facebook Knows How to Track You Using the Dust on Your Camera Lens

Facebook has long said that it doesn’t use location data to make friend suggestions, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t thought about using it.

Keep Track Of Who Facebook Thinks You Know With This Nifty Tool Keep Track Of Who Facebook Thinks You Know With This Nifty Tool

Facebook is constantly watching you. Now, you can watch Facebook back. Gizmodo Media Group’s Special Projects Desk is releasing a tool for people who want to study the friend recommendations Facebook chooses to give them. It’s called the “People You May Know Inspector.” To use the tool:

Facebook Swears It Won't Use Its New Powerful Face Recognition to Suggest 'People You May Know' Facebook Swears It Won't Use Its New Powerful Face Recognition to Suggest 'People You May Know'

This morning, Facebook announced that it’s going to start scanning all the photos uploaded to the social network looking for your face, unless you opt out—or unless you are a European or Canadian, where privacy law actually limits what Facebook can do with people’s faces. The purpose of the scanning, according to…

Those 'Citizens for Trump' Robocalls Were a Prank Gone Wrong Those 'Citizens for Trump' Robocalls Were a Prank Gone Wrong

People around the country who were baffled and alarmed to get recorded phone calls telling them to stop making “negative and derogatory posts” about President Trump were the targets of a recently launched prank call app—a gag that misfired when the company’s automated disclaimer message failed to work.

People Are Getting Robocalls About Their "Derogatory" Trump Posts [Updated] People Are Getting Robocalls About Their "Derogatory" Trump Posts [Updated]

Brett Vanderbrook was driving for Uber last week when he got a call from an unfamiliar number. He let it go to voicemail and when he listened to it later, he got a shock: It was a recorded message telling him to stop making “negative and derogatory posts about President Trump.”

How Facebook Figures Out Everyone You've Ever Met

In real life, in the natural course of conversation, it is not uncommon to talk about a person you may know. You meet someone and say, “I’m from Sarasota,” and they say, “Oh, I have a grandparent in Sarasota,” and they tell you where they live and their name, and you may or may not recognize them.

People at Facebook Don’t Know How Facebook Works People at Facebook Don’t Know How Facebook Works

Facebook is a vast and bewildering operation, working with visible and invisible data streams via opaque algorithms on a scale larger than humans can readily comprehend. Many of us have been baffled, for example, by the social network’s ability to figure out who we know in real life, as reflected by the suggestions…

How Facebook Outs Sex Workers How Facebook Outs Sex Workers

Leila has two identities, but Facebook is only supposed to know about one of them.

Yes, Google Uses Its Power to Quash Ideas It Doesn’t Like—I Know Because It Happened to Me [Updated] Yes, Google Uses Its Power to Quash Ideas It Doesn’t Like—I Know Because It Happened to Me [Updated]

The story in the New York Times this week was unsettling: The New America Foundation, a major think tank, was getting rid of one of its teams of scholars, the Open Markets group. New America had warned its leader Barry Lynn that he was “imperiling the institution,” the Times reported, after he and his group had…

Facebook Figured Out My Family Secrets, And It Won't Tell Me How Facebook Figured Out My Family Secrets, And It Won't Tell Me How

Rebecca Porter and I were strangers, as far as I knew. Facebook, however, thought we might be connected. Her name popped up this summer on my list of “People You May Know,” the social network’s roster of potential new online friends for me.

Do You Know How PYMK or Other Friend-Recommendation Systems Work? Tell Us Do You Know How PYMK or Other Friend-Recommendation Systems Work? Tell Us

“People You May Know.” “Suggested Friends.” “Suggestions for you.” No matter what it’s called, most of the social networks have it: a feature that recommends other users for you to connect with.

What Happens When You Tell the Internet You're Pregnant What Happens When You Tell the Internet You're Pregnant

A month after I ordered prenatal vitamins on Amazon, I started hearing an ad on Spotify that featured the sound of a baby’s heartbeat. It was an ad for a prenatal doctor.

Why Did Jared Kushner Download an Encrypted, Disappearing Message App? Why Did Jared Kushner Download an Encrypted, Disappearing Message App?

The list of people interested in Jared Kushner’s communications history keeps growing: This week, the White House advisor and presidential son-in-law voluntarily handed over documents to the Senate intelligence committee about his contacts with Russian government representatives during the presidential campaign and…

Jamming GPS Signals Is Illegal, Dangerous, Cheap, and Easy

I ordered it on eBay. When the four-ounce envelope arrived from New York three days later, it looked innocuous enough. It contained a finger-sized black plastic box, a small black antenna to screw onto that box, and two glass fuses. It was designed to fit into a car’s 12-volt electrical socket (that thing that used…

More Kashmir Hill's posts »

Language