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“This website uses cookies to make things easier. [Accept and close this message]” is possibly some of the worst consent copy I’ve ever read.

What things? Easier how? Easier for who? Easier for the person who ticked “cookie notice done” off their todo list?

Minor blocking rules update! Today I fixed access to spiegel⋅de. If you use that site, please always use in a Private Window to minimise their tracking. —Laura

The rules will auto-update if the app is running. If it’s not, you can get the new rules by choosing ‘Update rules’ or ‘Check again now’ from Better’s menu.

Short hair again! (Well as short as I’m brave enough to go…) Pink cheeks brought to you by the Irish weather.

Not really surprising that I couldn’t help my dad with the cryptic crossword when I just referred to knives as “the cutty things.”

“Using the personal data of millions of Americans against their will is certainly alarming. But what’s the difference between the Chinese government stealing all that information and a data broker amassing it legally without user consent and selling it on the open market?” via @aral

I went to add this article to my site, then saw it goes on to recommend our tracker blocker, @better. Kismet!

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“It is highly disturbing that we still have to have to say this, but websites dealing with such sensitive topics should not track their users for marketing purposes. Your mental health is not and should never be for sale.”

Related: as
@Tatianamac points out, we need to stop using “dark pattern”. For the practices in this particular article, I prefer “deceptive pattern”, “malicious pattern” or “anti-consent pattern” 🙃

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“Both the design and the functionality of them are very manipulative in favor of the first- and third-party collectors where possible.”— David Carroll… “It’s a design problem,” Carroll says, “but it’s a business model problem first and foremost.”

“[A]s the model treats underrepresented traits as undesired traits to receive less weighting, people with disabilities—like other marginalized groups—risk being excluded as a matter of course.”

In this particular case I’m not referring to capitalism… but also that.

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Save me from financial admin and the incompetent systems that surround it.

“Teens shouldn't have to go to those lengths to socialize privately on Instagram, said Liz O'Sullivan, technology director at the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project.… ‘She shouldn't have to have these psyop [psychological operations] networks with multiple people…’”

💙 New blocking rules! On 5th February 2020, Laura blocked one blocker blocker, fixed one site and blocked seven new trackers.

The rules will auto-update if the app is running. If it’s not, you can get the new rules by choosing ‘Update rules’ or ‘Check again now’ from Better’s menu.

This cute dog is a monster. He can open doors and has developed a habit of bursting into the room when you’re sleeping. When I (lovingly) told him he’s a monster, he struck this pose. This is why he always wins and we are very tired.

The Ethical Design Handbook is out!

Featuring insights from the great @laura, @aral and more…


“Despite many of these datasets containing “anonymized” data, the students say that identifying actual users wasn’t all that difficult.”

Any time someone says “anonymised” or “pseudonymised”, we’ve got to chuck these papers at them… (via @aral)

“With trans people facing daily harassment simply for existing as ourselves, the stakes seem too high to risk teaching these systems how to recognize us”

Made me think of @Tatianamac’s insightful talk, ‘The Banal Binary’ at New Adventures conference…

Brexit Day feels nauseating because it’s a milestone for the country in being more openly anti-immigrant and racist. Not to say the EU is necessarily better, or it’s why people voted in the referendum, but it is the effect. And I’m really sorry to those who will feel that effect.

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