Streams

Alex Goldman

Alex Goldman is a producer for On the Media and the co-host/creator of TLDR. He is on twitter hereSubscribe to the TLDR podcast here.

iPhone or Android/Mac or PC?

I have an iPhone, but I’m not sure that I can, in good conscience, endorse it. PC from womb to tomb.

What word would the other producers use to describe you?

Annoyed? Surly? Frustrated?

What embarrasses you about your media diet?

I have seen every episode of Bones.

What would your cable news show be called?               

"Controversial Opinions w/Alex Goldman" - It'll basically just be an hour of me shouting about things I don't like that everyone else likes. I'll have a McMahon style sidekick who will yell "Whoa! That's controversial!" to punctuate my rants. It will probably be fellow producer PJ Vogt.

What is your favorite thing about On the Media?

Inside jokes and inappropriate volumes.

Alex Goldman appears in the following:

News On The Website nationalreport.net is Fake

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The National Report (nationalreport.net) is not a website that traffics in real news. Don't share it. Don't link to it. This has been a public service announcement.
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Is It A Violation Of Your Child's Privacy To Write About His Porn Watching Habits?

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

A freelancer for The Atlantic wrote an article about finding his 9-year-old son looking at pornography. Did he violate his son's right to privacy?
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California To Require Kill Switches To Deter Phone Theft

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

California has passed a law that will allow people to remotely disable stolen cell phones. Will it deter theft?
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Indian State Outlaws "Objectionable Content," Will Start Arresting People for Precrime

Monday, August 25, 2014

The Indian state of Karnataka has not only outlawed sharing "malicious or misleading images" online, it can also arrest citizens for breaking the law before they actually commit a crime.
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Congress Keeps Getting Banned From Wikipedia

Friday, August 22, 2014

For the third time this summer, Congressional IPs have been blocked from editing Wikipedia.
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Anonymous Distances Itself From Member Who Doxed The Wrong Cop

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Hacker collective Anonymous is distancing itself from a member who posted the name of the wrong police officer in connection with the shooting of Michael Brown.
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New Delaware Law Allows Users To Will Their Digital Assets To Their Descendants

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

A new Delaware law allows users to leave their digital assets to their descendants.
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Facebook Attempts to Teach Its Users To Recognize Satire - With A "Satire" Tag

Monday, August 18, 2014

The old "The-Onion-being-mistaken-as-real-news" rubric is now so common at this point as to be mundane. In fact, the website "literally unbelievable" exists solely catalog unsuspecting Facebookers falling for The Onion's headlines. And The Onion is no longer the only site that traffics in parody that gets passed off as real news, it's just the best known, and most clearly satirical. Sites like The Daily Currant and The National Report - both less clearly satire and significantly less funny than The Onion - regularly get picked up as real news as well. Facebook is running a test on some users where it attempts to more clearly demarcate articles from The Onion as satire

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#34 - The Accidental Outing of Rwanda's Most Powerful Troll

Monday, August 18, 2014

Steve Terrill is a journalist who works in Rwanda until he accidentally got the office of Rwanda's president to implicate itself in a long-running online harassment campaign.
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The Rare Viral Internet Photo That Contributes To Understanding

Friday, August 15, 2014

Generally, photos that float around the internet are robbed of context, or hoaxes, or are attributed to events at which they didn't occur. So it's nice to see a photo that went viral, and rather than contribute to misunderstanding, it helped the person who posted it learn more about the world.

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Anonymous Claims They've Identified the Police Officer Who Shot Michael Brown. What Should We Do With That Information? (UPDATED)

Thursday, August 14, 2014

The Ferguson Police Department initially promised to make public the name of the officer who killed 18-year old Michael Brown, and then reneged, citing concerns for the officers safety. 

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The Army's Robot Recruiter

Friday, August 08, 2014

Sergeant Star is a chatbot designed to influence potential recruits to enlist. Alex Goldman of our podcast TLDR wasn't sure how he felt about that, so he talked to the Army and a reporter who's covered recruitment abuses to consider the pros and cons of deploying a Siri to guide our decision to go to war. 

This story originally appeared in a longer form on the TLDR Podcast. If you would like to hear a longer version of this story and Alex's update with Dave Maass of the Electronic Frontier Foundation, follow this link.

Music: Kraftwerk - Pocket Calculator. Special thanks to @M0X1 (Mo Xie) for the suggestion on Twitter!

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#33 - Unfollow A Man

Thursday, August 07, 2014

A few weeks ago, writer Katie Notopoulos called on the Internet to devote one day a year to unfollowing a man on social media. Men's rights activists were enraged, cable news was intrigued, and a lot of people felt quiet relief. On the latest episode of TLDR, we talk to Katie about her mission and her manifesto.

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So, Yeah, Those Russian Hackers? There Are Reasons To Be Skeptical

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Five reasons not to freak out over the latest reports of a massive personal data breach.

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The Russian Hackers Behind the Largest Cyber Breach Ever

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

A group of Russian hackers has reportedly stolen 1.2 billion usernames and passwords and 500,000 emails addresses from people around the globe. According to a report published Tuesday in The New York Times, the cyber criminals collected the confidential information from 420,000 websites for everything from small businesses to Fortune ...

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Pope Francis Says: Stop All That Downloadin'!

Wednesday, August 06, 2014

Ok, well he didn't exactly say that. Bazooka from GI Joe said that. Still Pope Francis, while calling the internet a "gift from God," said that us younguns waste too much time on it. Via the AP:

"Maybe many young people waste too many hours on futile things," the pope said in a short speech to the altar servers - young people who help the priest during religious services - who had come to Rome on a pilgrimage.

"Our life is made up of time, and time is a gift from God, so it is important that it be used in good and fruitful actions."

...

[he] also cautioned that high-speed world of digital social media needed calm, reflection and tenderness if it was to be "a network not of wires but of people".

He has a point. If I could have all the time back I spent furnishing my house in Animal Crossing or building massive ships in Captain Forever, I might have been able to apply that time to good and fruitful actions. Still, as we attempt to prove again and again on TLDR, the internet's network of wires is frequently utilized to create or strengthen human connections. It's not the network itself, it's how you use it.

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eBay Bans Albums By Black Metal Artist Burzum

Tuesday, August 05, 2014

It has been well established throughout the history of TLDR that I am a fan of what one could call "difficult" music. And even for me, Noreweigan Black Metal is a little out there. Not simply because it's totally brutal and unrelenting, it is also infamous for being a culture of Satanism, suicide, and church burning. Varg Vikernes, who records under the name Burzum, is often cited as a poster child for all that is ugly about the genre, having burned several churches and spent 21 years in prison for murdering fellow Black Metal artist Euronymous in the mid 90's. It's all pretty gross. So is that why eBay is making it impossible to purchase his music?

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Drawing Pictures With Your Run Mapping App

Monday, August 04, 2014

Look, I run for exercise, but I don't like it. Sure, I love the feeling of accomplishment, but I think my biggest problem with it, aside from the fact that I am not all that athletic, is that it's just boring. I try to spice it up with high energy running mixes and, of course, listening to podcasts, but I just haven't found a way to make it entertaining. I guess that's because I'm not as enterprising as copywriter Claire Wyckoff, whose new blog, "Running Drawing" may have finally come up with a way to make running fun.

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A Plugin That Searches OkCupid for Sexual Predators

Monday, August 04, 2014

On last week's episode of TLDR, we spoke to OkCupid President and founder Christian Rudder about the company's recent disclosure that it had been running an ethically questionable experiment on its users

In the experiment, the company took users who the site's algorithm found were bad matches (based on a battery of questions users answer) and told them they were actually good matches, and vice versa. In the interview I took issue with this experiment for a number of reasons. One of those reasons is because buried in the list of questions users get on OkCupid is this question: "Do you feel there are any circumstances in which a person is obligated to have sex with you?" I argued that this could lead to unsafe dating situations, to which Rudder replied "I mean there's also a lot of stuff we don't ask, I mean, y'know, so like, we don't know any of our users. Y'know so like we make no claim to the safety for anyone, and obviously we do everything we can to encourage a safe environment. But like, I think it's disingenuous to suggest that we're setting up people in dangerous situations." 

One enterprising hacker named Meitar Moscovitz (AKA Maymay) has developed a plugin to try and detect potentially dangerous situations before they occur.

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#32 - An Imperfect Match

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Some users of dating site OkCupid are upset at revelations that it was deliberately experimenting on its users by taking people who were bad matches and telling they were actually good for one another.

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