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TikTok doesn’t like ‘ugly’ people, leaked doc says

Doesn’t like slums or rural fields, either

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You’ve seen it before: a viral TikTok video of an attractive person doing something worthy of a meme. You were probably thinking, “how come the most beautiful people have all the humor?” It’s not just you and it’s not because of you. Apparently, TikTok is partly responsible for distorting how we see TikTok videos.

Today, American news outlet The Intercept leaked moderation policies for TikTok’s staff. In these documents, TikTok’s moderators are required to put down posts with “ugly facial looks” and deformed features. These include: “lack of front teeth, senior people with too many wrinkles, obvious facial scars,” “chubby, have obvious beer belly, obese, or too thin.”

Similarly, the policies encompass unattractive shooting locations including “slums” and “rural fields.” This can also include “extremely dirty and messy” houses.

Image source: The Intercept

Of course, rather than a complete ban, the moderation policies affect the visibility of certain posts. “Attractive” posts are more visible to more users, while “unattractive” posts might not appear to other users at all.

The strange rules join more sensible regulations like banning underage content, hate speech, and dangerous behavior. Regardless, controlling content based on looks is eccentric and offensive to whomever is affected.

According to a statement provided in the report, TikTok formerly used these guidelines to prevent bullying on its platform; however, the platform doesn’t use the same rules today. Strangely, the documents don’t make any mention of “bullying” at all. Instead, the leaked document cites that unattractive videos are “not worthing [sic] to be recommended to new users.” TikTok employs these rules to increase user base and user retention.

This isn’t the first time that TikTok has been called out for questionable moderation practices. In the past, the platform banned LGBT and anti-China content. The US is also currently on a crusade against the Chinese video-sharing platform.

Despite the hostility and the strange practices, TikTok remains one of the most popular platforms today, earning popularity worldwide.

SEE ALSO: TikTok launches #TikTokTravel with DOT Philippines

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Globe launches KonekTayo School Bus WiFi campaign

Currently operating in the city of Manila

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KonekTayo

Philippine Telco Globe is helping address the need for connectivity with the launch of the KonekTayo School Bus WiFi in the country’s capital — Manila.

The company deployed school buses equipped with special antennas that will broadcast WiFi signal from 7AM to 7PM (GMT+8) from Monday to Sunday in covered areas:

  • Pasaje del Carmen St.
  • Remigio St.
  • 853 Gonzalo Gil Puyat St.
  • 924 Bilibid Viejo St.
  • Tomas Mapua St.
  • Alfonso Mendoza St.
  • Dalupan St.
  • Oroqueta St.
  • Basco St. in Manila.

The KonekTayo WiFI service is free for the first hour for public school students and teachers in Manila. Globe provided the aforementioned with 289,000 SIM cards. However, use of the service is not limited to Globe users. It’s open to all mobile networks for PhP 15 per day.

The service is formerly called KapitWifi. It’s a community WiFi service that aims to provide households with affordable internet. The School Bus WiFi campaign not only extends connectivity to users, it also extends support to school bus operators whose main source of livelihood was put at stake by the pandemic.

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Huawei launches GENTLE MONSTER Eyewear II

With updated smart functions

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Last year, Huawei showcased a one-of-a-kind smart eyeglasses designed for fashion-conscious consumers, the GENTLE MONSTER Eyewear. Now, the company is back at it again with a second-gen version of the eyeglasses, now featuring a much-streamlined design and smarter functions.

A more comfortable and immersive wearing experience

The temples of GENTLE MONSTER Eyewear II is made of plastic titanium for lower density and lighter weight. This should guarantee a more comfortable wearing experience for the user. Meanwhile, Huawei constructed the temple hinges out of titanium elastic to increase the eyewear’s holding strength.

The eyewear also comes with a 20-degree curved earpiece angle, which is a huge improvement from its predecessor’s 12-degree angle.

Users will also feel a noticeable difference in the sound quality of the eyewear. The large-amplitude loudspeaker inside is bigger and slimmer.  Such improvements translate to a much-wider soundstage, allowing for an immersive experience than ever before.

Like before, the smart eyewear still includes a unique acoustic design that adapts to the user and their environment. Two semi-open speakers on both sides of the temples transmit sound directly through a directional chamber, reducing leakage and providing a stereo-like listening experience. To further reduce sound leakage, the temple features a leakage hole design that offset sound waves.

The eyewear also has an adaptive volume technology that can lower or raise the speaker volume accordingly depending on the surrounding noise.

Smarter eyewear features

The Gentle Monster Eyewear II also features updated gesture controls. Pairing the eyewear is much simpler now, with users only needing to pinch the left temple to start the process. Meanwhile, double-tapping on the left temple activates the eyewear’s voice assistant.

Swipe gestures are also included in the eyewear. A few swipes on the temples either play the next/previous song or raises/lower the eyewear’s volume.

The eyewear also intelligently detects its wear status. For instance, it automatically pauses any playing music when a user takes it off. It also displays a battery status window on the companion smartphone if a user puts it on after a long period of inactivity. Tapping on the window opens the eyewear’s settings so users can check and tweak it further. Furthermore, the eyewear also greets the user when they put it on the first time each day.

Huawei rates the GENTLE MONSTER Eyewear II for five hours of continuous music playback. The eyewear improved upon its predecessor by bundling a new NFC wireless charging technology allowing quick and hassle-free charging anytime, anywhere.

Pricing and availability

The eyewear now retails in Singapore for SG$ 638 in select Huawei concept stores. This price applies to both the Myma and Havana model. Buyers can also purchase the eyewear at authorized resellers like Best Denki, Challenger & Hachi.tech, COURTS, Harvey Norman, as well as online stores such as Lazada and Shopee.

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Yahoo Groups is shutting down this December

Another Yahoo service bites the dust

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For a long time, Yahoo was the behemoth in email and online communication. However, the company is gradually fading to irrelevance with most of its services being shut down in recent years. The latest service to be shattered is Yahoo Groups, which will cease operation come December 15, 2020.

Verizon — Yahoo’s current owner — recently announced the shutdown of the service through a message posted on its website and emails sent to users. The company cited the decline in usage of Yahoo Groups over the recent years as the primary factor in shutting it down.

Actually, the company started phasing out the service last year. The phase-out began last October 2019. On October 21, Verizon effectively removed the user’s ability to create new content on groups. As such, users lost the ability to create new discussions. However, users were still able to create new groups and mass-email conversations with all members despite the initial phase-out.

Fast forward to October 2020, and Yahoo Groups is all but gone. Starting today, users won’t have the ability to create new discussion groups anymore. Mass-email capabilities will remain until December. After that, all of Yahoo Groups will be shut down for good.

Verizon also encourages all users to switch to alternative services to continue any group discussions.

Perhaps, it’s goodbye now for Yahoo Groups, which was once the most popular discussion board site on the Internet. The service first began operating in 2001, lasting for mere 19 years before its shutdown this year. Today, sites like Reddit have provided most of the functionality originally provided by the service.

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