Monday, December 05, 2016

Fake news addict attacks a "target" pizza shop in DC; tech companies further explain how they will deal with terror promotion online; short film "Unhackable"

A (white) gunman (from Salisbury, North Carolina) stormed into the Comet Ping Pong Pizza Parlor in far Northwest Washington, fired one shot causing property damage but no injuries, and was arrested – but now the place is closed a couple days as police and the FBI investigate.  He seems to have been inspired by fake news stories that claimed that Hillary Clinton and others had been connected to a sex slave ring associated with the place.

The perp, Edgar Welch, now arrested, claimed he was doing a citizen investigation (and vigilante action perhaps) on the supposed ring.

In fact, Hillary Clinton’s email scandal was amplified by Comey’s Oct. 28 letter to Congress, where the email scandal was connected to allegations of Anthony Weiner’s supposed communications with an underage girl.

But even Trump was in a civil case, later dropped, with those kinds of allegations in the 1990s.

Billy Bush’s taping of the Days of our Lives NBC set, at least, only involved legal adults.

CBS News has the master story of Pizza shop incident here.  But it looks back to a local news story at WUSA about the viciousness and incredible nature of the fake news problem (and “#Pizzagate”).

NBCWashington has a detailed story here.

But NBCNews has an even more detailed story, about how the fake news blew up on 4chan, here. This fact pattern would seem to argue that Section 230 is giving some sites too much cover (although Reddit banned the thread).
So, we find a lot of Hillary's “deplorables” are easily duped by what they want to believe.

Other neighboring businesses in that area say they have been harrassed based on these fake news allegations.

Then, Facebook, Google-Youtube and Microsoft all say they will remove hate speech or terror materials in 24 hours when reported.  Microsoft says it will use a United Nations definition of what constitutes a terror group.  CNN has a detailed story on this, previewed by a video short film titled “Unhackable” (about sextortion involving Facebook and Skype)   .  The article emphasizes Europe.

Microsoft’s blog post is pretty indicative of how Silicon Valley will handle terror content online, here.  Trump could make “wartime” arguments to shut down a lot of user-generated content when ordinary civilians are put at risk.

Update: December 7

A detailed story by Marc Fisher et al on Pizzagate, front page of the Washington Post, here. Again, you wonder about Section 230 when the comments about the restaurant were so libelous, and difficult to pursue in practice.

Update: December 8

German Lopez of Vox has a detailed story that mentions a NYPD arrest rumor that I had heard verbally.

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