Tech News & Trends – June 5, 2024

Tech News & Trends Template (9)

Tech News & Trends – June 5, 2024

Employees from OpenAI claim the Company isn’t Concerned about Safety

A group of previously and currently employed workers at OpenAI are telling the truth about the “culture of recklessness and secrecy” within the company.
The insiders claim OpenAI has not done enough to prevent it’s AI from becoming dangerous.

William Saunders, a research engineer who left OpenAI in February, said this during his departure, “When I signed up for OpenAI, I did not sign up for this attitude of ‘Let’s put things out into the world and see what happens and fix them afterward.’”

Saunders and others state that OpenAI has used legal tactics, such as nondisparagement agreements, to prevent workers from voicing concerns about the technology.

OpenAI is getting greedy and working recklessly to develop “AGI” – Artificial General Intelligence – the industry term for a computer that is capable of doing anything a human can.

Just last week we reported that their new Safety Committee is being led by their CEO, Sam Altman, which is an obvious conflict of interest and only reinforces these claims suggesting OpenAI is focusing on progress and profits, rather than protection.

We knew AI would cause serious risks, which is why our ultimate guide to AI and Deepfakes offers families 15 tips to stay safe. The link is in the description below: https://bit.ly/3TVFoeK

New Zealand Bans Phones from Schools

Some good news to start things off, New Zealand has issued new regulations on students and smartphones in schools. The entire country is taking an “away for the day” strategy. Here’s their statement:

“The regulations require that schools must ensure students do not use or access a phone while they are attending school, including during lunchtime and breaks. This includes students who are on a school course or visit outside the school grounds.”

Students may be granted access to use their devices when:

A phone is required for health reasons

A phone is necessary to support a student with a disability or learning difficulty

A teacher directs students to use phones for a specific educational task

The principal determines that special circumstances warrant phone use – such as a student being a teenage parent.

Outside of those specific cases, whether that’s between classes, at lunch, or even on breaks – no phones!

This is great for young brains that don’t need the constant distractions – oftentimes from us as parents – that come with their phones. To learn more about the benefits of away-for-the-day strategies like this, visit phonefreeschools.com

Even When Nudes Are Known To Be Fake – The Victims Still Get Bullied

Fake nude photos caused an uproar in a New Jersey high school last year. Six months later, these images—created with artificial intelligence apps that merge a classmate’s face with a naked body—continue to spread through various schools.

Many of their parents remain completely unaware.

According to interviews and surveys conducted by the Human Factor, a conflict-resolution strategy firm whose founders spent time with students, the subjects of these AI-generated images feel humiliated and face judgment as well as bullying.

The firm surveyed over 1,000 students, educators, and parents nationwide in March and April to develop guidance for parents and educators.

When asked who would be more affected by fake nudes—the creator or the victim—73% of students indicated the victim.

“Even if it was debunked as a fake image, the subject would still get bullied and made fun of,” said a student in Eldorado, Illinois

“Their morals would be questioned,” noted a student in Seale, Alabama

“People will see them differently,” added a student in Levittown, New York

Until recently, few students were aware that their photos on social media could be manipulated into nude images using AI. Now, dozens of “face-swapping” and “nudify” tools are readily available online at little or no cost, accelerating teens’ stress levels.

Our brains process images 60,000 times faster than text, and so we remember them very well. It’s difficult to forget an image. Even when photos are deleted or vanish from messaging apps, classmates are unlikely to forget them. The researchers found that the images created are so realistic it’s nearly impossible to distinguish them from real ones.

Stories like this are becoming far too common. We have created an Ultimate Guide to AI and Deepfakes that offers 15 tips for keeping families safe. The link is in the description below: https://bit.ly/3TVFoeK

Twitch Becomes The Hub For Politics & Loses Trust And Safety Team

In light of the conflict happening in Gaza, many social media platforms have been limiting and restricting political content. However, this is not the case for Twitch, an extremely popular live-streaming app, that’s only rated 12+.

A few weeks ago, we reported how Twitch was gaining traction as a news source, due to streamers going live in the middle of protests and being free of the bias most mainstream news outlets have.

This week, influencers got together and hosted a massive fundraising campaign to aid relief in Gaza. The event was live-streamed on Twitch and raised $1.5M.

The combination of a highly documented conflict in Gaza, a growing audience for authentic news reporting, and the reduction of political content on other platforms has ushered Twitch into becoming the hub for political content.

Parents, Twitch is a very mature app. And their content policy is always changing. Earlier this year, they allowed nudity for a few days – which we will talk about later! And just the other day, Twitch replaced their entire Trust and Safety with “Twitch Ambassadors” who are described in vague terms.

To learn more, check out our review linked below: https://bit.ly/4a9FaFz

Twitter Is Rated X – Apple and Google Are Okay With It

Just last year, Twitter (now called X) announced that removing Child Sexual Abuse Material was their #1 priority. Since then, they have disbanded their trust and safety team and as of this week, they are now fully allowing communities to show adult content.

Here’s their statement on the latest change to allow adult content: “We believe that users should have the freedom to create, share, and consume material related to sexual themes, provided it is consensually produced and distributed. Sexual expression, whether visual or written, can be a legitimate form of artistic expression.”

Moderating content claiming to be “artistic” gets a lot more difficult and the line between what’s allowed and what’s not allowed gets blurred. We know this is because we’ve seen it happen before. Twitch, a popular live-streaming app, dealt with this exact problem back in December of 2023 after they allowed artistic nudity. Twitch then reversed the decision after only 2 days because their site was flooded with streamers sharing pornographic content labeled as “art.”

Despite the decision, both Apple and Google are keeping Twitter in their app stores due to the revenue it brings in. Bottom line – Twitter is rated X. This is not an app for kids. If you want to dig deeper into what Twitter is and the risks it presents, visit our updated app review in the description below: https://bit.ly/4e9xkic

Web Eraser – iOS 18’s Controversial Feature

When Apple releases iOS 18 this fall, it will include a controversial feature called Web Eraser. It will allow regular users, like us, to remove unwanted portions of web pages, such as ads.

It’s an AI tool still in the early stages of development, which we will test this summer as part of Apple’s Beta testing program.

We are curious to see if Apple will use the tool to help parents erase explicit content from mixed content sites like Reddit, Twitter, and others, where both non-pornographic and pornographic content live side-by-side. Mixed content sites are a nightmare for families.

Unfortunately, Apple is often slow to consider child protection on iPhones. In the meantime, if your family uses an Apple device, like an iPhone or iPad, here’s our step-by-step iOS Parental Control Guide: https://bit.ly/4bHuIGF

“Chris, help! We have a tech emergency!”

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