Be Warned: Customer Service Agents Can See What You're Typing in Real Time

Next time you’re chatting with a customer service agent online, be warned that the person on the other side of your conversation might see what you’re typing in real time. A reader sent us the following transcript from a conversation he had with a mattress company after the agent responded to a message he hadn’t sent…

California's Wildfires Have Spawned a Truly Weird New Conspiracy Theory

This month, California has been gripped by three devastating wildfires: Northern California’s Camp Fire, which recently became the deadliest in the state’s history, and, in Southern California, the Woolsey and Hill Fires. An emerging, deeply weird conspiracy theory holds that those fires aren’t caused by wind…

The Tragedy of Goodyear’s Allegedly Defective G159 Tire Keeps Getting Worse

In July 1999, Jim Wright and his wife Joyce were traveling along a New Mexico roadway in their 1995 Fleetwood American Eagle RV when, suddenly, the vehicle’s left-front tire failed. The tire was a Goodyear G159, a tire now linked to numerous fatal crashes but has never been recalled and has never faced a serious…

The Wildly Unregulated Practice of Undercover Cops Friending People on Facebook

Terrance Everett has been on the wrong side of the law for most of his adult life. When he was 18, he had to register as a sex offender for having sex with a 15-year-old, because she was under the age of consent. In his 20s, he was, he says, “hanging with the wrong people doing the wrong things,” resulting in charges…

Digital Privacy Advocates Are Concerned About the Shitty Media Men List Lawsuit: 'This Was an Important Tool' 

Last week, writer, filmmaker and accused shitty media man Stephen Elliott filed suit against Moira Donegan, the self-identified creator of the Shitty Media Men list. In that time, a legal defense fund for Donegan has raised over $100,000 and she’s retained the counsel of Robbie Kaplan, co-founder of the Time’s Up…

Massachusetts Is an Unlikely Battleground for the Future of Trans Rights, But Here We Are

Whatever I expected from the voters of Massachusetts, it certainly wasn’t this middle-aged man in a tank top, leaning on his half-open screen door and gazing into the middle distance as he delivered a stirring speech about people born with the “soul of the woman.” Actually, he told a pair of animated canvassers right…

What on Earth Is America's Worst Governor Going to Do When He Leaves Office?

In the event that the people actually running for office this midterm season aren’t upsetting enough, here’s something to consider: In January, Maine’s Paul LePage, the worst governor in America—you’ll perhaps remember him from the time he called a state representative a “son of a bitch, socialist cocksucker,” or as…

How a Subprime Auto Lender Consumed Detroit With Debt and Turned Its Courthouse Into a Collections Agency

When Don Foss started his career as a car salesman, he recognized early on that most of his prospective customers had shaky credit, leaving them with few options for financing to buy a vehicle. So in 1972, he started subprime auto lending company Credit Acceptance Corporation to fill that void. He knew lending money…

'Do Not Track,' the Privacy Tool Used by Millions of People, Doesn't Do Anything

When you go into the privacy settings on your browser, there’s a little option there to turn on the “Do Not Track” function, which will send an invisible request on your behalf to all the websites you visit telling them not to track you. A reasonable person might think that enabling it will stop a porn site from…

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