Thursday, July 18, 2019

“Water-related keywords top Google search over the last 15 months, finds SEMrush Study - Business Today” plus 4 more

“Water-related keywords top Google search over the last 15 months, finds SEMrush Study - Business Today” plus 4 more


Water-related keywords top Google search over the last 15 months, finds SEMrush Study - Business Today

Posted: 18 Jul 2019 09:05 AM PDT

As the reality struck home, Indians turned to Google to understand the gravity of the water crisis, shows the study by online visibility management platform SEMrush.

Sonal Khetarpal   New Delhi     Last Updated: July 18, 2019  | 21:36 IST

India is staring at a looming water crisis. NITI Aayog's alarming report Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) released last year predicted that 21 Indian cities, primarily Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi and Hyderabad, would run out of water by 2020. It also said that 600 million Indians -- nearly half of country's population -- faced acute water stress in their day-to-day lives.

As the reality struck home, Indians turned to Google to understand the gravity of the matter, shows the study by online visibility management platform SEMrush.

According to findings, the top three keywords between January 2018 and May 2019 are Water Pollution, Save Water, and Sources of Water, counting to an average search of 1,49,147; 1,29,824 and 31,812, respectively.

It is interesting to note that searches on Water Pollution spiked in January for two consecutive years at 2.46 lakh.

On Twitter, the most trending hashtags have been #watercrisis mentioned 3,698 times and #savewater used 2,948 times. These hashtags are being supported by emoji of Folded Hands and Water Drops to emphasise on the need to save water.

One of the engaging tweets was from Captain Amarinder that was re-tweeted the most -- 701 times. It said, "21 major Indian cities are expected to run out of water in 2020. Where is the "Jal" for the "Nal" going to come from? Disappointed that nothing concrete has been announced in the budget, #Budget2019 #SaveWater."

Man Charged With 64 Felony Counts After Police Seize Over 1000 Guns From Bel Air Mansion - PEOPLE.com

Posted: 16 Jul 2019 08:16 AM PDT

Man Charged After Police Seize Over 1,000 Guns | PEOPLE.com

this link is to an external site that may or may not meet accessibility guidelines.

Google Is Absolutely Listening to Your Conversations, and It Confirms Why People Don't Trust Big Tech - Inc.

Posted: 12 Jul 2019 05:33 AM PDT

You figured they were listening anyway, right? 

It turns out you were right. Every time you talk to your Google Assistant, there's a chance someone might listen to the audio from that conversation. Which is revealing for a few reasons, not the least of which is that Google obviously records, saves, and transmits your voice data in a way that can be accessed by actual people. So much for privacy.

In a  blog post published yesterday by David Monsees, Google's product manager for search, the company says: "These language experts review and transcribe a small set of queries to help us better understand those languages. This is a critical part of the process of building speech technology, and is necessary to creating products like the Google Assistant."

Google says its reason for having human contractors listen to your conversations with Google Assistant is to improve performance in multiple languages. That revelation came in response to a leak of audio by a contractor Google refers to as a "language reviewer." 

People are listening.

Every time you say "Hey Google," or physically access the Google Assistant feature on your smartphone or Google Home, your interactions are recorded and those recordings are then potentially reviewed by contractors that Google says are used to improve its products.

However, in addition to listening when you give a command, sometimes your device will experience what Google calls a "false accept," which means that your conversation is recorded even though you're not directly engaging with Google Assistant, and haven't given the wake command.

That means it's possible for Google's contractors to listen to audio recorded when you're talking to your spouse or on the phone, even when you're not interacting with a Google device.

As for your personal information captured, Google says that just 0.2 percent of all audio snippets end up being listened to by the company's language reviewers. And the company does allow you to delete those snippets manually, or automatically after a period of time. 

Still, this news represents a significant difference in the way Google operates its voice assistant and it's indicative of why people have such a hard time trusting the company. Even if the reason for listening is completely benign, the constant stream of news about data breaches, privacy concerns, and even regulatory investigations make it harder and harder to give the company the benefit of the doubt.

Big tech companies are getting harder to trust.

I think most people assume that Google's computers are listening, monitoring, recording, and analyzing pretty much every interaction with the company's products like search or Photos. But I think that most of us never give much thought to the fact that it's possible that actual people might be on the listening end.

And the fact that your voice data is transmitted to contractors for any reason means that there's always a chance that it could be leaked or put at risk. In fact, that's exactly what happened here. A Dutch contractor leaked sensitive voice recordings.

With Apple's Siri assistant, for example, the processing of most voice commands happens on the device, and the only information sent to the cloud is a request for the specific information, like a sports score or directions.

Apple also doesn't record your voice waiting for you to say "Hey Siri," and if it does capture voice audio, the actual recording of your voice never leaves the device.

As I've written here before, your personal information and privacy are increasingly at risk. Tech companies don't have the best track record at honoring boundaries with your personal information or privacy and haven't exactly done a great job of protecting that information either. 

Trust is your most valuable asset.

Trust is quickly becoming a company's most valuable brand asset, especially if you are a tech company. Even if you aren't, there's an opportunity to distinguish your brand by the way you treat your customers and their information.

In fact, there's an opportunity to recognize that your users aren't your product, and even if your business model is based on selling ads, it's possible to do it in a way that balances your need for information without violating the privacy of your users.

Instead, be transparent about what it is you are planning to do with their information. By the way, transparent doesn't mean bury it deep in some terms and conditions or privacy policy. It means to be upfront about exactly what the cost is in terms of a user's personal information, and what exactly you plan to do what that information.

At the same time, as a user, it's your responsibility to understand exactly what happens with your information, despite the fact that tech companies have very little incentive to be transparent.

There will always be a trade-off anytime you use technology--especially when it involves listening to your voice, understanding what you're saying, and providing your information--but be educated about that trade-off so you make an informed decision and count the cost.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

5 billion and counting: This Google Apple reaches a milestone - Times of India

Posted: 28 Jun 2019 12:00 AM PDT

NEW DELHI: Google's popular browser Chrome has just reached five billion installs. It is the fifth Google app to reach five billion installs. Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps and Google Search have already crossed five billion installs.
Google has introduced new features in the Chrome browser for better user experience. Features like password generator, improved file sharing and the popular dark mode have made the browser more user friendly.
Recently, Google introduced a new extension for its web browser Google Chrome. Called Suspicious Site Reporter, this new Chrome extension can be used to report suspicious websites while browsing the internet. The company introduced the Chrome extension under Google's Safe Browsing program.
Users can download the Chrome extension from Chrome web. After downloading the extension will appear in your Chrome window placed next to the other downloaded extensions in shape of a flag.
So, while browsing the internet if you that a particular website is shady then you can click on the extension and it will show what it has detected looks suspicious about that website and will give you an option to send the report to Google about it. By default, the report will include the URL of the website and its IP address, but will give you the option if or not you want to send a screenshot of the website, its DOM Content (which includes all content of the site) and Referrer Chain (which is URLs that led to this site).

Don't sugar-coat what Jeffrey Epstein and Brittany Zamora did to children - AZCentral

Posted: 16 Jul 2019 05:00 AM PDT

CLOSE

Opinion: National cases against sex offenders serve as a reminder to use appropriate language. It's not underage sex. It's child rape.

Type "underage sex" into the Google search engine. The first result: "Statutory rape."

That's exactly the language we should be using when discussing the salacious cases against sex offenders splattered across national news as of late. 

Take Arizona's own Brittany Zamora. The 28-year-old former elementary school teacher was just handed a 20-year prison sentence last week for repeatedly raping a sixth-grader

Those two decades behind bars are the most lenient punishment she could face for her crime. 

And yet, her lawyer, Belen Olmedo Guerra, pointed a finger at the boy, saying, "Brittany is not a predator and this was not between a young child and Brittany – this was a teenager."

Say it: Brittany Zamora is a rapist

CLOSE

Ex-Goodyear teacher Brittany Zamora will be on probation for the rest of her life and must register as a sex offender. Buzz60

She persisted, chiding his "many, many behavioral issues."

But let's call a spade a spade. This is victim blaming, plain and simple.

"Saying a 13-year-old seduced her," responded Russ Richelsoph, an attorney for the victim's guardians, "that's what you see from hardcore child predators."

In this state, anyone younger than 18 cannot legally consent to sex with an older person. 

It doesn't matter if the victim was a boy. It doesn't matter if he flirted back. It doesn't matter if he conducted himself poorly in school. 

It doesn't matter if the abuser was physically attractive.

Zamora was the adult in the position of power. Instead, she abused it.

And it is rape – not sex. It's necessary that the public and media alike speak plainly on it. 

Jeffrey Epstein is a sex offender

CLOSE

Lawyers for Jeffrey Epstein accusers urged a judge Monday to keep the wealthy financier behind bars until he goes on trial on federal charges that he sexually abused underage girls. (July 15) AP, AP

Then, there's Jeffrey Epstein.

"When his troubles began, he was talking to me and said, 'What can I say, I like young girls,' " said Vanity Fair columnist Michael Wolff. "I said, 'Maybe you should say, 'I like young women.' "

Way back in 2008, he pleaded guilty to "one count of solicitation of prostitution and one count of solicitation of prostitution with a minor," reports the Miami Herald. 

Legal jargon can be so cryptic sometimes. That last one simplifies to seeking out a child to molest – as, again, minors cannot legally consent to sexual activity with an older person. 

The FBI had 53 pages worth of documentation indicting him for sexual abuse of "more than 30 underage girls."

But instead, a secret plea deal was arranged with Alexander Acosta, who was then the Florida federal attorney – and just recently resigned from his Labor secretary position.

So the billionaire spent just more than a year in the Palm Beach County jail. He was even released earlier than expected.

To this day, he is a convicted sex offender in Florida.

In New York, Epstein is registered as a Level 3 offender: one with "high risk of re-offense." 

And these children are abuse victims

But things are looking much, much worse for him. 

Money and power can elevate a man to deity status, surrounding him with celebrities and finery. They might even let him manipulate the judiciary system.

But they cannot quell all of the whispers – whispers turned into shouts about his "pedophile island" and the "massages" for which he allegedly paid minors.

He is currently under arrest for the trafficking of girls "as young as 14," states Vox.

It's critical that we refer to those potential victims as children – because that's what they were. 

And kids do not have the agency to choose prostitution. They're just abuse victims. 

"There is no difference between raping a child, and paying to rape a child," wrote Cindy McCain and Malika Saada Saar for The Huffington Post. 

The terminology we use can determine how society reacts to these crimes – whether we minimize the violations or accept them in full.

That's the first step in the right direction towards justice for exploited children.

Reach the reporter at megan.boyanton@arizonarepublic.com. Follow her on Twitter @meganululani

Support local journalism.Subscribe to azcentral.com today. 

Read or Share this story: https://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/2019/07/16/jeffrey-epstein-brittany-zamora-emphasize-how-we-sugar-coat-rape/1735858001/

“Water-related keywords top Google search over the last 15 months, finds SEMrush Study - Business Today” plus 4 more


Water-related keywords top Google search over the last 15 months, finds SEMrush Study - Business Today

Posted: 18 Jul 2019 09:05 AM PDT

As the reality struck home, Indians turned to Google to understand the gravity of the water crisis, shows the study by online visibility management platform SEMrush.

Sonal Khetarpal   New Delhi     Last Updated: July 18, 2019  | 21:36 IST

India is staring at a looming water crisis. NITI Aayog's alarming report Composite Water Management Index (CWMI) released last year predicted that 21 Indian cities, primarily Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi and Hyderabad, would run out of water by 2020. It also said that 600 million Indians -- nearly half of country's population -- faced acute water stress in their day-to-day lives.

As the reality struck home, Indians turned to Google to understand the gravity of the matter, shows the study by online visibility management platform SEMrush.

According to findings, the top three keywords between January 2018 and May 2019 are Water Pollution, Save Water, and Sources of Water, counting to an average search of 1,49,147; 1,29,824 and 31,812, respectively.

It is interesting to note that searches on Water Pollution spiked in January for two consecutive years at 2.46 lakh.

On Twitter, the most trending hashtags have been #watercrisis mentioned 3,698 times and #savewater used 2,948 times. These hashtags are being supported by emoji of Folded Hands and Water Drops to emphasise on the need to save water.

One of the engaging tweets was from Captain Amarinder that was re-tweeted the most -- 701 times. It said, "21 major Indian cities are expected to run out of water in 2020. Where is the "Jal" for the "Nal" going to come from? Disappointed that nothing concrete has been announced in the budget, #Budget2019 #SaveWater."

Man Charged With 64 Felony Counts After Police Seize Over 1000 Guns From Bel Air Mansion - PEOPLE.com

Posted: 16 Jul 2019 08:16 AM PDT

Man Charged After Police Seize Over 1,000 Guns | PEOPLE.com

this link is to an external site that may or may not meet accessibility guidelines.

Google Is Absolutely Listening to Your Conversations, and It Confirms Why People Don't Trust Big Tech - Inc.

Posted: 12 Jul 2019 05:33 AM PDT

You figured they were listening anyway, right? 

It turns out you were right. Every time you talk to your Google Assistant, there's a chance someone might listen to the audio from that conversation. Which is revealing for a few reasons, not the least of which is that Google obviously records, saves, and transmits your voice data in a way that can be accessed by actual people. So much for privacy.

In a  blog post published yesterday by David Monsees, Google's product manager for search, the company says: "These language experts review and transcribe a small set of queries to help us better understand those languages. This is a critical part of the process of building speech technology, and is necessary to creating products like the Google Assistant."

Google says its reason for having human contractors listen to your conversations with Google Assistant is to improve performance in multiple languages. That revelation came in response to a leak of audio by a contractor Google refers to as a "language reviewer." 

People are listening.

Every time you say "Hey Google," or physically access the Google Assistant feature on your smartphone or Google Home, your interactions are recorded and those recordings are then potentially reviewed by contractors that Google says are used to improve its products.

However, in addition to listening when you give a command, sometimes your device will experience what Google calls a "false accept," which means that your conversation is recorded even though you're not directly engaging with Google Assistant, and haven't given the wake command.

That means it's possible for Google's contractors to listen to audio recorded when you're talking to your spouse or on the phone, even when you're not interacting with a Google device.

As for your personal information captured, Google says that just 0.2 percent of all audio snippets end up being listened to by the company's language reviewers. And the company does allow you to delete those snippets manually, or automatically after a period of time. 

Still, this news represents a significant difference in the way Google operates its voice assistant and it's indicative of why people have such a hard time trusting the company. Even if the reason for listening is completely benign, the constant stream of news about data breaches, privacy concerns, and even regulatory investigations make it harder and harder to give the company the benefit of the doubt.

Big tech companies are getting harder to trust.

I think most people assume that Google's computers are listening, monitoring, recording, and analyzing pretty much every interaction with the company's products like search or Photos. But I think that most of us never give much thought to the fact that it's possible that actual people might be on the listening end.

And the fact that your voice data is transmitted to contractors for any reason means that there's always a chance that it could be leaked or put at risk. In fact, that's exactly what happened here. A Dutch contractor leaked sensitive voice recordings.

With Apple's Siri assistant, for example, the processing of most voice commands happens on the device, and the only information sent to the cloud is a request for the specific information, like a sports score or directions.

Apple also doesn't record your voice waiting for you to say "Hey Siri," and if it does capture voice audio, the actual recording of your voice never leaves the device.

As I've written here before, your personal information and privacy are increasingly at risk. Tech companies don't have the best track record at honoring boundaries with your personal information or privacy and haven't exactly done a great job of protecting that information either. 

Trust is your most valuable asset.

Trust is quickly becoming a company's most valuable brand asset, especially if you are a tech company. Even if you aren't, there's an opportunity to distinguish your brand by the way you treat your customers and their information.

In fact, there's an opportunity to recognize that your users aren't your product, and even if your business model is based on selling ads, it's possible to do it in a way that balances your need for information without violating the privacy of your users.

Instead, be transparent about what it is you are planning to do with their information. By the way, transparent doesn't mean bury it deep in some terms and conditions or privacy policy. It means to be upfront about exactly what the cost is in terms of a user's personal information, and what exactly you plan to do what that information.

At the same time, as a user, it's your responsibility to understand exactly what happens with your information, despite the fact that tech companies have very little incentive to be transparent.

There will always be a trade-off anytime you use technology--especially when it involves listening to your voice, understanding what you're saying, and providing your information--but be educated about that trade-off so you make an informed decision and count the cost.

The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.

5 billion and counting: This Google Apple reaches a milestone - Times of India

Posted: 28 Jun 2019 12:00 AM PDT

NEW DELHI: Google's popular browser Chrome has just reached five billion installs. It is the fifth Google app to reach five billion installs. Gmail, YouTube, Google Maps and Google Search have already crossed five billion installs.
Google has introduced new features in the Chrome browser for better user experience. Features like password generator, improved file sharing and the popular dark mode have made the browser more user friendly.
Recently, Google introduced a new extension for its web browser Google Chrome. Called Suspicious Site Reporter, this new Chrome extension can be used to report suspicious websites while browsing the internet. The company introduced the Chrome extension under Google's Safe Browsing program.
Users can download the Chrome extension from Chrome web. After downloading the extension will appear in your Chrome window placed next to the other downloaded extensions in shape of a flag.
So, while browsing the internet if you that a particular website is shady then you can click on the extension and it will show what it has detected looks suspicious about that website and will give you an option to send the report to Google about it. By default, the report will include the URL of the website and its IP address, but will give you the option if or not you want to send a screenshot of the website, its DOM Content (which includes all content of the site) and Referrer Chain (which is URLs that led to this site).

Don't sugar-coat what Jeffrey Epstein and Brittany Zamora did to children - AZCentral

Posted: 16 Jul 2019 05:00 AM PDT

CLOSE

Opinion: National cases against sex offenders serve as a reminder to use appropriate language. It's not underage sex. It's child rape.

Type "underage sex" into the Google search engine. The first result: "Statutory rape."

That's exactly the language we should be using when discussing the salacious cases against sex offenders splattered across national news as of late. 

Take Arizona's own Brittany Zamora. The 28-year-old former elementary school teacher was just handed a 20-year prison sentence last week for repeatedly raping a sixth-grader

Those two decades behind bars are the most lenient punishment she could face for her crime. 

And yet, her lawyer, Belen Olmedo Guerra, pointed a finger at the boy, saying, "Brittany is not a predator and this was not between a young child and Brittany – this was a teenager."

Say it: Brittany Zamora is a rapist

CLOSE

Ex-Goodyear teacher Brittany Zamora will be on probation for the rest of her life and must register as a sex offender. Buzz60

She persisted, chiding his "many, many behavioral issues."

But let's call a spade a spade. This is victim blaming, plain and simple.

"Saying a 13-year-old seduced her," responded Russ Richelsoph, an attorney for the victim's guardians, "that's what you see from hardcore child predators."

In this state, anyone younger than 18 cannot legally consent to sex with an older person. 

It doesn't matter if the victim was a boy. It doesn't matter if he flirted back. It doesn't matter if he conducted himself poorly in school. 

It doesn't matter if the abuser was physically attractive.

Zamora was the adult in the position of power. Instead, she abused it.

And it is rape – not sex. It's necessary that the public and media alike speak plainly on it. 

Jeffrey Epstein is a sex offender

CLOSE

Lawyers for Jeffrey Epstein accusers urged a judge Monday to keep the wealthy financier behind bars until he goes on trial on federal charges that he sexually abused underage girls. (July 15) AP, AP

Then, there's Jeffrey Epstein.

"When his troubles began, he was talking to me and said, 'What can I say, I like young girls,' " said Vanity Fair columnist Michael Wolff. "I said, 'Maybe you should say, 'I like young women.' "

Way back in 2008, he pleaded guilty to "one count of solicitation of prostitution and one count of solicitation of prostitution with a minor," reports the Miami Herald. 

Legal jargon can be so cryptic sometimes. That last one simplifies to seeking out a child to molest – as, again, minors cannot legally consent to sexual activity with an older person. 

The FBI had 53 pages worth of documentation indicting him for sexual abuse of "more than 30 underage girls."

But instead, a secret plea deal was arranged with Alexander Acosta, who was then the Florida federal attorney – and just recently resigned from his Labor secretary position.

So the billionaire spent just more than a year in the Palm Beach County jail. He was even released earlier than expected.

To this day, he is a convicted sex offender in Florida.

In New York, Epstein is registered as a Level 3 offender: one with "high risk of re-offense." 

And these children are abuse victims

But things are looking much, much worse for him. 

Money and power can elevate a man to deity status, surrounding him with celebrities and finery. They might even let him manipulate the judiciary system.

But they cannot quell all of the whispers – whispers turned into shouts about his "pedophile island" and the "massages" for which he allegedly paid minors.

He is currently under arrest for the trafficking of girls "as young as 14," states Vox.

It's critical that we refer to those potential victims as children – because that's what they were. 

And kids do not have the agency to choose prostitution. They're just abuse victims. 

"There is no difference between raping a child, and paying to rape a child," wrote Cindy McCain and Malika Saada Saar for The Huffington Post. 

The terminology we use can determine how society reacts to these crimes – whether we minimize the violations or accept them in full.

That's the first step in the right direction towards justice for exploited children.

Reach the reporter at megan.boyanton@arizonarepublic.com. Follow her on Twitter @meganululani

Support local journalism.Subscribe to azcentral.com today. 

Read or Share this story: https://www.azcentral.com/story/opinion/op-ed/2019/07/16/jeffrey-epstein-brittany-zamora-emphasize-how-we-sugar-coat-rape/1735858001/

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