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Submission + - A Trail of Clicks, Culminating in Conflict (nytimes.com)

NotSanguine writes: Technology companies are up in arms about the FTC's pending rules change which would require explicit parental permission allowing websites to gather a wide range of data on children 13 and under.

From the NYT Article:


“If adopted, the effect of these new rules would be to slow the deployment of applications that provide tremendous benefits to children, and to slow the economic growth and job creation generated by the app economy,” Catherine A. Novelli, vice president of worldwide government affairs at Apple, wrote in comments to the agency.

But would that be a bad thing? As reported in the New York Times last week, Matt Richtel of the NYT writes:

There is a widespread belief among teachers that students’ constant use of digital technology is hampering their attention spans and ability to persevere in the face of challenging tasks, according to two surveys of teachers being released on Thursday.

So, will the new FTC rules end up helping children (by enhancing their privacy and, if industry pundits are right, reducing the amount of content available online for children — thus enhancing their attention spans), or will the negative effects on corporations have as deleterious an effect on the economy as to measurably reduce the quality of education?

Technology

Submission + - Web Sites Shine Light on Petty Bribery Worldwide (nytimes.com) 1

NotSanguine writes: The cost of claiming a legitimate income tax refund in Hyderabad, India? 10,000 rupees.
The going rate to get a child who has already passed the entrance requirements into high school in Nairobi, Kenya? 20,000 shillings.
The expense of obtaining a driver’s license after having passed the test in Karachi, Pakistan? 3,000 rupees.
Such is the price of what Swati Ramanathan calls “retail corruption,” the sort of nickel-and-dime bribery, as opposed to large-scale graft, that infects everyday life in so many parts of the world.

Ms. Ramanathan and her husband, Ramesh, along with Sridar Iyengar, set out to change all that in August 2010 when they started ipaidabribe.com, a site that collects anonymous reports of bribes paid, bribes requested but not paid and requests that were expected but not forthcoming.

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