‘Stand Proudly’ or ‘Be Suspended Without Pay.’ Trump Renews His Attacks on Protesting NFL Players

President Trump on Friday renewed his attacks on football players who protest during the national anthem, after two members of the Miami Dolphins kneeled and one stood with a raised fist during the anthem Thursday ahead of the team’s first preseason game.

“The NFL players are at it again – taking a knee when they should be standing proudly for the National Anthem,” Trump wrote on Twitter. “A football game, that fans are paying soooo much money to watch and enjoy, is no place to protest.”

Trump also threatened that players would be suspended without pay if they continued to protest, though he has no authority over the National Football League’s disciplinary decisions. “Find another way to protest,” he wrote. “Stand proudly for your National Anthem or be Suspended Without Pay!”

Several football players, many of them African-American, have taken a knee or otherwise expressed solidarity during the national anthem since 2016, when then-San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick began the protest movement to highlight police violence against people of color. Kaepernick, currently not signed by any NFL team, is pursuing a collusion case against the NFL, claiming he was blacklisted by team owners over his protests. The protests have been controversial, with some defending players’ right to free speech while others arguing the gridiron isn’t the place for political demonstrations.

Kaepernick on Friday tweeted about the Dolphins players — Kenny Stills, Albert Wilson and Robert Quinn — who engaged in the protests Thursday.

“My brother [Stills] continued his protest of systemic oppression tonight by taking a knee,” Kaepernick tweeted on Thursday. “Albert Wilson joined him in protest. Stay strong brothers!”

Sports – TIME

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Movie review: Pride proudly crosses lines

2014-09-23-pride.jpg

Pride is the kind of movie that is best seen without knowing its storyline going in. Because it delivers something quite different than you expect, based on the kind of movie it seems to be.

Even if you do know the plot (which deals with the coal-miners strike that tore Great Britain apart in the mid-1980s and much more), you still have to see it to believe it. Director Matthew Warchus (primarily known for theater work such as God of Carnage and Art) tells a multi-character story based on actual events that manages to be funny, touching, enraging and otherwise demanding a viewer’s emotional response.

It starts with those strikes in Great Britain in 1984, in protest of Margaret Thatcher’s attempts to close coal mines and lay off miners. Even as the miners are striking, members of the London gay community decide, after that year’s gay pride parade, that they will support the miners and start raising money for their strike fund. When their efforts to donate the money to the union itself are ignored (because of who the donation is coming from), the group’s leader, Mark (Ben Schnetzer), rallies his troops and picks one mining village in Wales to whom they’ll take their support in person.

The miners at first are nonplussed at the idea of being in the same room as actual gay people: “I’ve never met anyone who was gay,” one local says, to which Mark replies, “That you know of.”

This review continues on my website.
Entertainment – The Huffington Post
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OkCupid Proudly Admits It Experiments On People All The Time

Remember last month when everyone hated on Facebook for manipulating people’s moods in the name of science? On Monday, the dating website OkCupid came to Facebook’s defense by admitting that it, too, runs experiments on people.

Let’s just say the reaction wasn’t much better.

Christian Rudder, one of OkCupid’s founders, wrote a company blog post Monday explaining that he and his engineers sometimes play around with people’s accounts to figure out the best way to build the site. In the past, Rudder wrote, that tweaking has included hiding profile text and telling pairs of people who might have made great matches that they weren’t actually good for each other.

Despite the breezy tone of Rudder’s post, lots of people weren’t very happy.

“We noticed recently that people didn’t like it when Facebook ‘experimented’ with their news feed,” Rudder wrote. “Even the FTC is getting involved. But guess what, everybody: if you use the Internet, you’re the subject of hundreds of experiments at any given time, on every site. That’s how websites work.”

Anyone who thinks looks shouldn’t matter is likely to be bummed out by the company’s findings. Back in the days when OkCupid would ask users to rate potential dates on both looks and personality, Rudder’s team decided to hide text in some profiles — the life summaries that the lovelorn toil over for hours — just to see what would happen. They found that people received about the same personality score with or without text. Conclusion: Rating personality was just another way of asking “Is this person cute?”

Another experiment tested OkCupid’s famous matching algorithm, which is supposed tell you, on a scale of 0 to 100, how good a match you are with someone else. The site told some pairs who were bad matches that they were, in fact, great for each other, and it told other pairs who had scored high on compatibility that they weren’t a good fit. OkCupid found that the power of suggestion made people who were incompatible — according to the algorithm, at least — hold an online conversation longer than expected.

okcupid

The argument that Rudder is making on behalf of the rest of the tech industry is that websites need to do this sort of testing to build stuff we like. “Most ideas are bad,” he wrote. “Even good ideas could be better. Experiments are how you sort all this out.”

In June, Facebook published a bit of research that cast some light on its manipulative practices. In a university-approved experiment, the site tweaked some people’s news feeds to figure out what would put them in a bad mood. The paper provoked a national conversation over the secret testing all large websites presumably do.

It’s not exactly a surprise to learn that OkCupid’s data people like to play around with user metrics. In fact, for years OkCupid has synthesized chunks of its data to publish fun, viral blog posts like 2011’s “10 Charts About Sex.”

Still, it’s one thing to look at a bunch of anonymized data and draw conclusions from it, like OkCupid did when it told us the real stuff people white people like. It feels like something else entirely when a dating site that sells itself on the power of its matching algorithm lies to some of its users about that very thing.
Weddings – The Huffington Post
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