December 5th, 2019

Private companies are tracking your every online move and using that data to rate your behavior as a consumer. It’s valuable information, and it’s now available for you to see. As explained in this recent piece in the New York Times, you can request your file—the records that determine your secret consumer score—and find out just what these companies know about you. Fair warning: They know a lot. And if you want to try to shake… Continue reading >

November 13th, 2019

Instagram is experimenting with likes—specifically, it’s testing what happens when it switches off public “like” tallies. Other tech companies, Twitter and Facebook among them, are launching similar assessments. According to Axios: “Responding to public clamor and media criticism, social media companies are trying to move away from engagement at all costs and towards a healthier experience. That means they’re also stepping into a more unpredictable future for their own bottom lines and those of businesses… Continue reading >

November 7th, 2019

The Chinese government has decided 90 minutes is the maximum amount of time per day young people should be playing video games. According to the New York Times, officials say more than that amount puts eyesight at risk and hinders academic performance. Continue reading >

October 2nd, 2019

Microsoft recently revealed a new security flaw in its Internet Explorer. Some say it’s high time to ditch the browser altogether in favor of more secure options. In a statement, the company warns, “An attacker who successfully exploited the vulnerability could gain the same user rights as the current user.” Mashable’s Jack Morse writes, “Sure, there’s a wonky fix available, but you have to do it manually. . . So go ahead… Continue reading >

September 24th, 2019

Facebook has suspended a vast swath of apps from its platform, citing privacy concerns, in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The tech giant has been roundly criticized for its policies relating to the collection and dissemination of personal data and was fined $5 billion by the Federal Trade Commission for mishandling users’ information. Millions of apps developed for Facebook are under review. Continue reading >

July 27th, 2019

Your kids know what TikTok is, and so do roughly 500 million monthly users. You should, too. TikTok is a social media app used to make and easily share short videos. It’s like Vine, if you recall that early-days video app, but much more popular. It’s fun, engaging, and easy to use, and therein lies the problem: millions of quick, zany videos at your fingertips, waiting to eat up hours of your day and… Continue reading >

July 24th, 2019

It may seem ridiculous to you, but Instagram Influencer is a real job. And it can be wildly lucrative: a million bucks per post. Influencers play an increasingly important role in the business and commercial worlds, which means it’s increasingly important for parents to understand what they are. These are the people who will be in front of your kids on social media in the future, selling… Continue reading >

May 22nd, 2019

A generation ago, some of us used to worry about our private conversations being overheard. Others, often derided as paranoid, suspected the government of eavesdropping on everything we say. The rapid technological advances of today make those concerns seem quaint. The wired world has brought the “eavesdroppers” into the home and made them part of the family. These digital assistants answer our questions, play music we like, place phone calls for us, tell us… Continue reading >

May 16th, 2019

A prompt to restart your computer or phone for a software update usually leads to a groan and a vow to do it later. And then later comes and you…vow to do it later, again. Here’s a tip: Do it now, not later. The reason for updates (yes, they’re tedious) has a lot to do with the current state of digital defenses and making sure all users and their… Continue reading >

April 18th, 2019

Children are spending a lot of time in front of a digital screen these days. On average: seven hours a day among kids age 8 to 18. Screen time recommendations vary among health advocates, but no one suggests staring at a screen for nearly a full workday is good for anyone, let alone nine-year-olds. What do we know about the effects of gazing at the glow? How can we mitigate the risks? Continue reading >
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