09-27-2022  1:21 am   •   PDX and SEA Weather
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NORTHWEST NEWS

Black United Fund Launches Emerging Entrepreneur Program

Pilot program will support promising small business owner ready to take the next step.

After a Rocky Start Oregon Drug Decriminalization Eyes Progress

When voters passed the state's pioneering Drug Addiction Treatment andRecovery Act in 2020, the emphasis was on treatment as much as on decriminalizing possession of personal-use amounts of heroin, cocaine, methamphetamine and other drugs. But progress has been slow and Oregon still has among the highest addiction rates in the country yet over half of addiction treatment programs in the state don't have enough staffing and funding to help those who want help

Morgan State University Students Win Zillow’s HBCU Hackathon With App That Measures Financial Credibility Outside of Credit Scoring

Second-annual competition challenged participants to develop new technologies to help consumers during their journey to find a home.

Portland, Oregon, to Use Microphones to Track Gunshots

The decision to advance a pilot program with ShotSpotter was made after Wheeler met with Police Chief Chuck Lovell.

NEWS BRIEFS

11 Area Post Offices to Host Hiring Events

Over 100 Northwest USPS Hosting Job Fairs ...

Rep. Janelle Bynum Champions Oregon Business and Sets Sights on Strengthening Key Industries

Rep. Bynum invited leaders and experts to discuss ways the state can champion businesses of all sizes, expand broadband, bolster the...

PPS Renames Headquarters

The central office will be named after Matthew Prophet, Portland Public School's first Black Superintendent from 1982-1992,...

Affordable Housing Plan to Go Before Seattle Voters

If I-135 passes it would create a public development authority ...

Merkley, Wyden: Over $3.2 Million in Federal Funds to Address Domestic Violence and Expand Services for Survivors 

The awful threat of domestic violence undermines the safety of far too many households and communities in Oregon and nationwide ...

Floatplane wreckage recovery in Puget Sound begins

SEATTLE (AP) — The National Transportation Safety Board and the U.S. Navy have started efforts to recover the wreckage of a floatplane that crashed in Washington state’s Puget Sound earlier this month, killing all 10 people on board. A barge that’s been equipped to conduct the...

Man retried for sex crime found guilty, gets longer sentence

SALEM, Ore. (AP) — An Oregon man retried on a sexual assault charge has been found guilty and was sentenced Monday to 25 years in prison, about 45 years after he was acquitted of raping his then-wife in a trial that garnered national attention. In 2017, John Rideout was found...

OPINION

No Room for Black Folk

A recent interview with Dr. Ebony Elizabeth Thomas and an associate professor, reveals the inability of certain white Americans to share the benefits of our society ...

The Cruelty of Exploiting Vulnerable People for Political Advantage

There is always a new low for Trump Republicans. And that is pretty frightening. ...

The Military to American Youth: You Belong to Me

The U.S. military needs more than just money in its annual budget. It needs access to America’s young people as well — their wallets, their bodies, and their minds. ...

Financial Fairness at Risk With Proposed TD Bank-First Horizon Merger

As banks grow larger through mergers and focus on growing online and mobile services, serious concerns emerge on how fair and how accessible banking will be to traditionally underserved Black and Latino communities. ...

AFRICAN AMERICANS IN THE NEWS

Prosecutor who worked on 1 renewal of Emmett Till case dies

GREENWOOD, Miss. (AP) — Funeral services were held Monday for the Mississippi prosecutor who worked on one of the renewed investigations into the 1955 lynching of Black teenager Emmett Till, a killing that galvanized the civil rights movement after his mother insisted on an open-casket funeral so...

Civil rights law targets 'cancer alley' discrimination

RESERVE, La. (AP) — Sprawling industrial complexes line the drive east along the Mississippi River to the majority-Black town of Reserve, Louisiana. In the last seven miles the road passes a massive, rust-colored aluminum-oxide refinery, then the Evonik chemical plant, then rows of white tanks at...

Democrats in Florida seek to win over Latinos on gun control

MIAMI (AP) — Annette Taddeo walked to a podium overlooking Miami’s Biscayne Bay and described to her audience how she had fled terrorism as a teenager in Colombia and now feared for the safety of her 16-year-old daughter at an American public school. A blue and bright orange bus...

ENTERTAINMENT

Review: 'The Fall Guy' accurately portrays police procedures

“Fall Guy” by Archer Mayor (Minotaur) A Mercedes sedan, stolen a few days earlier in New Hampshire, is found abandoned in Vermont. It is crammed with stolen goods from a two-state crime spree. And in the trunk, police find a body. The victim turns out to be the...

Review: A Montana private detective faces two mysteries

“Treasure State” by C.J. Box (Minotaur) Former police officer turned Montana private detective Cassie Dewell has two bizarre mysteries on her hands. First off, a wealthy matron who’d been bilked by a conman needs her help — not to find the conman but locate the...

Krakow cancels Roger Waters gigs, urges him to visit Ukraine

WARSAW, Poland (AP) — The Polish city of Krakow cancelled gigs by Pink Floyd co-founder Roger Waters because of his sympathetic stance toward Russia in its war against Ukraine, a local councilman said Monday, inviting the singer to visit Ukraine with him to see the extent of Russian crimes. ...

U.S. & WORLD NEWS

He's back! Italy's Berlusconi wins Senate seat after tax ban

ROME (AP) — Just in time to celebrate his 86th birthday, former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi is making his...

UN meeting produces sense that a 'new epoch' is arriving

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The war in Ukraine and its global fallout transfixed the meeting of world leaders at the...

Teen interest in long-lasting birth control soars after Roe

Sixteen-year-old Adismarys Abreu had been discussing a long-lasting birth control implant with her mother for...

Latin America development bank axes chief after ethics probe

MIAMI (AP) — Governors of the Inter-American Development Bank have voted to fire its president, Mauricio...

Harris focuses Asia trip on security, adds tour to Korea DMZ

TOKYO (AP) — In meeting after meeting with Asian leaders Tuesday, Vice President Kamala Harris emphasized the...

As Cantonese language wanes, efforts grow to preserve it

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Three decades ago, finding opportunities to learn Cantonese in San Francisco wasn't hard....

Michael Liedtke AP Technology Writer

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- Bloggers and activists from China, the Middle East and Latin America said Friday they were afraid that new Twitter policies could allow governments to censor messages, stifling free expression.

Thursday's announcement that Twitter had refined its technology to censor messages on a country-by-country basis raised fears that the company's commitment to free speech may be weakening. Twitter is trying to broaden its audience and make more money by expanding around the globe.

"I'm afraid it's a slippery slope of censorship," said social media commentator Jeff Jarvis, interviewed at a gathering of business and government leaders in Davos, Switzerland.

"I understand why Twitter is doing this - they want to be able to enter more countries and deal with the local laws. But, as Google learned in China, when you become the agent of the censor, there are problems there," he added.

Egyptian activist Mahmoud Salem, who tweets and blogs under the name "Sandmonkey," questioned in a tweet whether Twitter "is selling us out."

Twitter sees the censorship tool as a way to ensure individual messages, or tweets, remain available to as many people as possible while it navigates a gauntlet of different laws around the world.

Before, when Twitter erased a tweet it disappeared throughout the world. Now, a tweet containing content breaking a law in one country can be taken down there and still be seen elsewhere.

Twitter will post a censorship notice whenever a tweet is removed. That's similar to what Internet search leader Google Inc. has been doing for years when a law in a country where its service operates requires a search result to be removed.

Like Google, Twitter also plans to the share the removal requests it receives from governments, companies and individuals at the chillingeffects.org website.

The similarity to Google's policy isn't coincidental. Twitter's general counsel is Alexander Macgillivray, who helped Google draw up its censorship policies while he was working at that company.

"One of our core values as a company is to defend and respect each user's voice," Twitter wrote in a blog post. "We try to keep content up wherever and whenever we can, and we will be transparent with users when we can't. The tweets must continue to flow."

Twitter, which is based in San Francisco, is tweaking its approach now that its nearly 6-year-old service has established itself as one of the world's most powerful megaphones. Daisy chains of tweets already have played instrumental roles in political protests throughout the world, including the Occupy Wall Street movement in the United States and the Arab Spring uprisings in Egypt, Bahrain, Tunisia and Syria.

It's a role that Twitter has embraced, but the company came up with the new filtering technology in recognition that it will likely be forced to censor more tweets as it pursues an ambitious agenda. Among other things, Twitter wants to expand its audience from about 100 million active users now to more than 1 billion.

Reaching that goal will require expanding into more countries, which will mean Twitter will be more likely to have to submit to laws that run counter to the free-expression protections guaranteed under the First Amendment in the U.S.

If Twitter defies a law in a country where it has employees, those people could be arrested. That's one reason Twitter is unlikely to try to enter China, where its service is currently blocked. Google for several years agreed to censor its search results in China to gain better access to the country's vast population, but stopped that practice two years after engaging in a high-profile showdown with Chain's government. Google now routes its Chinese search results through Hong Kong, where the censorship rules are less restrictive.

In China, where activists quickly caught on to Twitter despite it being blocked inside the country, artist and activist Ai Weiwei tweeted Friday: "If Twitter censors, I'll stop tweeting."

China's Communist Party remains highly sensitive to any organized challenge to its rule and responded sharply to the Arab Spring, cracking down last year after calls for a "Jasmine Revolution" in China.

Many Chinese find ways around the so-called "Great Firewall" that has blocked social networking sites such as Twitter and Facebook.

Nelson Bocaranda, a Venezuelan journalist, radio host and outspoken opponent of President Hugo Chavez, warned that Twitter's decision could prompt a government crackdown on critics' tweets ahead of the Oct. 7 presidential election.

"Twitter has become a weapon to preserve our embattled democracy," said Bocaranda, who has more than 482,000 followers.

Twitter is "an important tool" for Venezuelans to share information as local media resort to self-censorship as means of avoiding conflict with government officials, Bocaranda added.

Salem, the Egyptian activist, added in a tweet on his account: "This is very bad news."

"Is it safe to say that (hash)Twitter is selling us out?" he wrote.

"Clearly there is a huge user backlash against this latest move by Twitter," said blogger Mike Butcher, editor of Tech Crunch Europe.

"It was seen as one of the few platforms that was free of any kind of censorship, heavily used during for example Arab spring and even in Russia lately over protests over the elections. It is, to some extent, something that we could have predicted," Butcher said.

In its Thursday blog post, Twitter said it hadn't yet used its ability to wipe out tweets in an individual country. All the tweets it has previously censored were wiped out throughout the world. Most of those included links to child pornography.

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Associated Press writers Christopher Toothaker in Caracas, Venezuela, Angela Charlton in Davos, Switzerland, Cara Anna in New York and Ben Hubbard in Cairo contributed to this story.

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