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Sun, 28 May 2023
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Facebook agrees to delete European users' facial recognition data

© Desconocido
Facebook Inc. has agreed to delete all the facial recognition data it has collected from European users and switch off the feature in Europe by Oct. 15.

The move follows a review of the facial recognition feature that prompts users to "tag" friends in photos uploaded to the service.

Ireland's privacy regulator Billy Hawkes said Facebook would not turn it back on without agreeing with his office on "the most appropriate means of collecting user consent." He said Facebook was "sending a clear signal of its wish to demonstrate its commitment to best practice in data protection compliance."

Hawkes' office, which began reviewing Facebook's compliance with Irish and European Union data protection rules in 2011, has urged Facebook to give users a better understanding of how their personal data is handled and increased control over privacy settings. He said that the "great majority" of the recommendations had been implemented to the regulator's satisfaction.


Colorado Bank Robber Handed Out Cash To People

Colorado Springs police are asking the public to return any money they might have received from a man they say is a bank robber who handed out stolen money in a hotel lobby.

Police arrested David Anderson, 26, on suspicion of aggravated robbery and attempted robbery after a string of crimes on Wednesday.

Police say the spree started when a sporting goods store reported a man with a shotgun was trying to obtain another weapon Wednesday afternoon when a shot was fired. The man left the store - a Big 5 Sporting Goods - after a struggle.

Police say suspect then moved on to an Adams Bank & Trust, where he managed to get away with some cash.

Heart - Black

Ohio Woman Unknowingly Married Her Father

Valerie Spruill
Valerie Spruill
It was a dark secret. The kind that destroys lives, devastates families and decimates faith.

Nobody shared it with Valerie Spruill while her husband was alive. For years after his death, she heard bits of the story. It was something about an absentee father, something about her husband.

None of it made sense, she said. That's not until her uncle finally told her what no one else had: She had unknowingly married the father she never knew.

"It is devastating. It can destroy you," Spruill told CNN late Thursday by telephone. "It almost did."

Spruill, 60, of Doylestown, Ohio, went public with her story this month, first published in the Akron Beacon Journal, with the hopes that it would help others facing what seem like insurmountable problems.

It's a story that has gone viral, attracting attention as faraway as Australia and India where the questions are always the same, she says: How could that happen?

It's a question that Spruill said she has been grappling with since she first learned the truth in 2004, six years after her husband Percy Spruill died.

"I don't know if he ever knew or not. That conversation didn't come up," she said. "I think if he did know, there is no way he could have told me."

She confirmed that her husband was indeed her father through a DNA test, hair taken from one of his brushes.

The aftermath of the secret was devastating emotionally -- and physically, Spruill suffered two strokes and was diagnosed with diabetes.

All of it, she believes was brought on by learning the family secret.


First Lawsuits Filed Against Theater in Colorado Shooting

Century 16, theater shooting, James Holmes

The Century 16 theater in Aurora, Co.
Denver - Three Colorado moviegoers who were hurt when a gunman opened fire in a crowded theater in July sued the owners of the theater, Cinemark USA, on Friday accusing it of failing to provide adequate security, their lawyers said.

The action marks the first known civil lawsuits filed over the July 20 shooting at a suburban Denver screening of the Batman movie The Dark Knight Rises that killed 12 people and wounded 58 others.

James Holmes, a former neuroscience graduate student at the University of Colorado, has been charged with murder and attempted murder in the case.

"Readily available security procedures, security equipment and security personnel would likely have prevented or deterred the gunman from accomplishing his planned assault on the theater's patrons," the law firm of Keating, Wagner, Polidori and Free said in a statement.

Representatives of Cinemark could not immediately be reached for comment on the suits.

Black Cat

Texas Mom Hauled off to Jail for Letting Children Play Outdoors after Nosey Neighbour Calls Police

A stay-at-home-mom from Texas is suing the local police department after she was held behind bars for 18 hours for child abandonment, a charge she says is completely false.

"Orange jump suit, in a cell, slammed the door, for 18 hours," Tammy Cooper tells KPRC News. That's how she describes how she spent almost a full day after officers with the La Porte Police Department responded to a call questioning the mother's parenting skills.

Cooper's children, ages 6 and 9, were playing on their motorized scooters outside of their La Porte, Texas home when a nearby neighbor called 9-1-1 and reported that the children weren't being supervised. When the authorities arrived, they acted on the complaint and concluded that Cooper must have been at fault. On her part, the mom insists she was watching her children the whole time from a lawn chair on her property.

"I was out there the entire time," Cooper tells the network. "I never left that lawn chair the entire time."

Penis Pump

Polish police in a lather over creepy 'initiation' photos showing teens licking whipped cream off priest's knees

School in southern Poland posted the pictures on its website. The priest, who is the head of the school, said the creamy ritual was a long-standing tradition of kids paying 'tribute.'
 young teens licking cream off a priest's knees
© Laski Diffusion / East News / Polaris
Officials in Poland are in an uproar over photos showing a group of young teens licking cream off a priest's knees.

Polish authorities have launched a probe about a possible perv priest after photos surfaced showing teenage boys and girls licking whipped cream off his knees during a bizarre "initiation ceremony." The priest's school, however, doesn't see what all the fuss is about.

The creepy snapshots were taken during an initiation ceremony for freshmen at St. Dominika Savio Silesian School in Lubin, southeast Poland.

The shots show a group of boys and girls on all fours - some of them in cat make-up - taking turns licking white foamy cream off Father Marcin Kozyra's knobby knees.


Is the food shortage before us? Will we be buying bacon and pork sausages next year?

There could soon be a global pork shortage, and a sharp rise in prices, the National Pig Association warns. But will British consumers be willing to pay more to save their bacon and sausages? Served as bacon rashers in an English breakfast, roasted with crackling, stir-fried in a noodle dish or used as the key meat in a regional sausage recipe, pork is the most eaten meat in the world.

"Pork has always played an important part in British cuisine," says Phil Brady, spokesperson for the British Sausage Appreciation Society. So much so, there are more than 470 recipes and flavours of British sausages in use today. "We are a nation of pork producers and eaters," says food writer Karen Burns-Booth. "And the low cost makes it accessible for families for good meals."

But the cheapest of red meats that provides the flavour base for the nation's beloved bangers is under threat. An escalating crisis in the global pork industry could put an end to "cheap" cuts and bargain pork prices.

Comment: Sounds like now is a good time to be buying up pork, salting and smoking it. And canning it.


Latest Designer Drug Called 'Smiles' Linked to Teen Deaths

© Fedor Kondratenko, Shutterstock
The synthetic drug 2C-I is usually sold in white powder form.
Several teenagers' deaths have law enforcement officials concerned about the next in a long line of illegal synthetic drugs: 2C-I, also known as "Smiles."

The drug, a hallucinogen, has been linked to two deaths in East Grand Forks, North Dakota, though little is known about this drug's dangers. Other synthetic drugs, including K2 or "fake weed," have caused problems by proliferating before being made illegal.

"There is hardly any research at all in the scientific literature on these things, even in animals, much less any sort of formal safety evaluation in humans," said Matthew Johnson, a professor of behavioral pharmacology at Johns Hopkins University.

A new high

2C-I is part of the 2C family of drugs, a group of closely related molecules that have psychedelic effects. Along with the other 2Cs, 2C-I was discovered by chemist and synthetic-drug guru Alexander Shulgin, who published the formulas of psychoactive drugs in his book PiHKAL: A Chemical Love Story (Transform Press, 1991). As of July 2012, the Drug Enforcement Administration classifies 2C-I as a Schedule I controlled substance, making it illegal to manufacture, buy, sell or possess the drug.

Usually sold in powder form, 2C-I can also be taken as a tablet. Users often mix the powder form with a stabilizing substance, such as chocolate or candy, before ingesting. The drug's effects include auditory and visual hallucinations, along with feelings of giddiness, relaxation and empathy.

"[M]y conversations were extremely clear and insightful," wrote one 2C-I user on erowid.org, which hosts an online version of Shulgin's book. "The degree of honesty was incredible."


Suicide Now Kills More Americans Than Car Crashes

© Medical Daily
A study published today has found an alarming trend: suicide now kills more people than do car accidents. In fact, while the number of car crash-related deaths has declined significantly, the number of suicide-related deaths, via poisonings and falls, has increased drastically.

"Suicides are terribly undercounted; I think the problem is much worse than official data would lead us to believe," study author Ian Rockett said. Rockett, a professor of epidemiology at West Virginia University, believes that as many as 20 percent of deaths could be unrecognized suicides. He pointed to overdoses in particular, many of which were caused by prescription drugs.

He said that this rise was a problem mostly swept under the rug, and he would like to see the same amount of attention placed on suicides as there is on traffic fatalities.

The study authors examined data provided by the U.S. National Center for Health Statistics to determine the number of injury deaths. They found that unintentional and intentional deaths had increased 10 percent between 2000 and 2009 but car accident deaths do not account for that jump.


Mystery of dad who stabbed himself in the heart

© Unknown
The Webb family

Mystery surrounds the horrific death of a placid family man who went berserk and attacked his wife before stabbing himself in the heart.

The inquest into Howard Webb's suicide could find no reason for his sudden decision to kill himself.

After he and his wife Michelle went to bed he started mumbling something she could not hear, then punched her in the face and put his hands around her neck as if to strangle her, the inquest heard.

Mrs Webb, who still lives at the family home in Mersey Road, Whaddon, Cheltenham, told Assistant Deputy Gloucestershire Coroner Tom Osborne that she had no idea what had sparked her 57-year-old husband off and he had never been violent towards her before.

She told the inquest that they had been married for five years and lived with their three children and two of her children from previous relationships.