Who Should Be Saved First? Experts Offer Ethical Guidance

from NYTs How do doctors and hospitals decide who gets potentially lifesaving treatment and who doesn’t? A lot of thought has been given to just such a predicament, well before critical shortages from the coronavirus pandemic. “It would be irresponsible at this point not to get ready to make tragic decisions about who lives and who dies,” said Dr. Matthew Wynia, director of the Center for Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Colorado. Facing this dilemma recently — who gets a ventilator or a hospital bed — Italian doctors sought ethical counsel and were told to consider an approach […]

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Who Should Be Saved First? Experts Offer Ethical Guidance

from NYTs How do doctors and hospitals decide who gets potentially lifesaving treatment and who doesn’t? A lot of thought has been given to just such a predicament, well before critical shortages from the coronavirus pandemic. “It would be irresponsible at this point not to get ready to make tragic decisions about who lives and who dies,” said Dr. Matthew Wynia, director of the Center for Bioethics and Humanities at the University of Colorado. Facing this dilemma recently — who gets a ventilator or a hospital bed — Italian doctors sought ethical counsel and were told to consider an approach […]

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When Coronavirus Quarantine Is Class Warfare

from NYTs It’s been a big week for what I refer to as “Hermit Tech.” Stock in technology companies that facilitate working from home have soared in a spiraling market otherwise anxious by an impending coronavirus pandemic. Netflix is preparing for the server strain of the bored but quarantined masses. Expensive Peloton stationary bikes and streaming workout services are seeing substantial spikes in interest. Tech guides are popping up suggesting everything from noise-canceling headphones, Wi-Fi signal boosters, and productivity hacks for families who’ll need to make close quarters work and life livable. As a Hermit Tech aficionado, this makes sense. […]

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It’s Time to Push Tech Forward, and Rebuild What It Broke

from Wired In 1904, a group of Canadian workers began the hard slog of constructing the world’s longest bridge, across the Saint Lawrence River just south of the city of Quebec. It was a wildly ambitious project. And it wasn’t just for the Quebecois: Railroads were revolutionizing commerce and communications, and the bridge would connect people and allow trains to run from New Brunswick in the east to Winnipeg in the west. The river was 190 feet deep at the center, and ice piled high above the water’s surface in the winter. Nothing about the bridge’s construction would be easy. […]

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Inside The Bizarre World of Internet Trolls and Propagandists

from TED Journalist Andrew Marantz spent three years embedded in the world of internet trolls and social media propagandists, seeking out the people who are propelling fringe talking points into the heart of conversation online and trying to understand how they’re making their ideas spread. Go down the rabbit hole of online propaganda and misinformation — and learn we can start to make the internet less toxic. ? More here.

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The College Admission Conspiracy Is Education’s Madoff Moment

from Forbes The scope, scale and cunning of the college admission conspiracy that has embroiled more than 50 elites, including Hollywood stars Lori Loughlin and Felicity Huffman, CEOs, prominent lawyers and others, is nothing short of higher education’s Bernie Madoff moment. Madoff, a crestfallen Wall Street investment titan spent more than 30 years “besting” the market, in what was later revealed to be nothing more than an eye-watering $65 billion Ponzi scheme. Like the FBI investigation that unraveled the complex web of college admission cheaters who benefited from a coordinated network of corrupt college officials, prominent coaches, shadow test takers […]

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Do You Have a Moral Duty to Leave Facebook?

from NYTs I joined Facebook in 2008, and for the most part, I have benefited from being on it. Lately, however, I have wondered whether I should delete my Facebook account. As a philosopher with a special interest in ethics, I am using “should” in the moral sense. That is, in light of recent events implicating Facebook in objectionable behavior, is there a duty to leave it? In moral philosophy, it is common to draw a distinction between duties to oneself and duties to others. From a self-regarding perspective, there are numerous reasons one might have a duty to leave […]

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Letter from Birmingham Jail

April 16, 1963 MY DEAR FELLOW CLERGYMEN: While confined here in the Birmingham city jail, I came across your recent statement calling my present activities “unwise and untimely.” Seldom do I pause to answer criticism of my work and ideas. If I sought to answer all the criticisms that cross my desk, my secretaries would have little time for anything other than such correspondence in the course of the day, and I would have no time for constructive work. But since I feel that you are men of genuine good will and that your criticisms are sincerely set forth, I […]

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Apple’s Use of Face Recognition in the New iPhone: Implications

from ACLU Apple unveiled its new iPhone X Tuesday, and it will include extensive face recognition capabilities. Face recognition (as I have discussed) is one of the more dangerous biometrics from a privacy standpoint, because it can be leveraged for mass tracking across society. But Apple has a proven record of achieving widespread acceptance for technologies that it incorporates into its phones. So what are we to think of this new deployment? The first question is whether the technology will be successful. Face and iris recognition technology incorporated into some other phones (such as Samsung’s) has widely been seen as […]

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Letter from Birmingham Jail

April 16, 1963 MY DEAR FELLOW CLERGYMEN: While confined here in the Birmingham city jail, I came across your recent statement calling my present activities “unwise and untimely.” Seldom do I pause to answer criticism of my work and ideas. If I sought to answer all the criticisms that cross my desk, my secretaries would have little time for anything other than such correspondence in the course of the day, and I would have no time for constructive work. But since I feel that you are men of genuine good will and that your criticisms are sincerely set forth, I […]

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Five New Human Rights For The Digital Age

from Medium Here are some core human rights that I humbly suggest might form part of a what I like to call a Digital Ethics Manifesto: 1. The right to remain natural, i.e. ‘merely’ biological and organic. We must continue to have the choice to exist in an unaugmented state. We need to retain the right to work or be employed, use public services, buy things, and function in society without the need to deploy technology with, on or — most importantly — inside our bodies. Various expressions of what I like to call #WiredOrFired — fears are already an issue […]

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A Student Loan System Stacked Against the Borrower

from NYTs “It feels like I’m being set up to fail.” That’s how Patrick Wittwer, 31, described his experience trying to repay his roughly $50,000 in student loans. Between misdirected payments by one of the companies servicing his loan and the abusive collection tactics he encountered when he fell behind, Mr. Wittwer said the repayment process simply seemed stacked against him. A 2008 graduate of Temple University with a degree in media arts, Mr. Wittwer is not alone in his experience. Consumer advocates say student-loan servicers often make an already heavy debt load even more burdensome for borrowers. A report issued late […]

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