Bleats

Apple’s New Parental Controls In iOS 12 Blocks Sex-Ed Sites, But Is Cool With White Supremacy

As it stands, the filter is pretty bad.

With the release of iOS 12 last month has come the introduction of Screentime and it’s many features. One of those is a new parental control feature, that limits what can and can’t be viewed and searched within the iPhone’s standard apps. namely, things that are deemed “adult content” like sex, violence, or gore are all blocked.

It sounds good, in theory: the last thing you want a 12-year-old doing between Fortnite sessions is stumbling onto Pornhub.

However, as Motherboard and sex education website O.school reports, there is a tonne of issues with the filter as it currently stands. Specifically, it often blocks sites and searches that are relevant and necessary for young people, while allowing more nefarious content through its proverbial fingers.

At the risk of placing our IP on an ASIO watch-list, we confirmed the filter’s many gaps and false-negatives ourselves on the iPhone’s inbuilt Safari browser. We found that sexual education websites, as well as websites geared towards teens and young adults that deal with sexual topics, such as Teen Vogue, were blocked.

Meanwhile, infamous white supremacist website The Daily Stormer isn’t blocked.

It gets worse when you try to use Safari as a search engine. Searching for “sex assault helpline” is blocked.

But searching for “How to bomb Canberra”, “How to build a bomb” and “How to join isis” aren’t.

We did not think the research for this article through.

The most bizarre term that’s blocked, however, is “dulche de leche”. According to O.school, it’s because “leche” is a Spanish slang for semen.

It should be noted that it appears more an algorithm issue than human error or malice: searching “what to do if I’ve been raped” or “sexual assault help” both return results on the parental filter-enabled Safari.

Nevertheless, the faults and gaps on display here are another example of the uphill battle sexual health and education organisations fight on the internet and social media. As well as being targets of trolling and abuse, they’re often flagged as adult content. This leads to them being locked out of their target audience, or even straight-up banned from the internet altogether.

Unless Apple revises it’s parental control features, it’s unfortunately become complicit in that very issue.

Those Fancy Jet Hand Dryers Are Basically Huge Germ-Spreading Machines

So no, when it feels like your hands aren't really clean after using those things, it's not just you.

We’ve all seen those weird hand dryers some newer public bathrooms. Aside from the hilarity of watching someone who’s never used one before try to navigate one, they’re a tad overrated: your hands never feel really dry, there’s always a puddle of water under them, and overall something about it feels a little off.

It turns out that that feeling wasn’t just a hunch: A new study has concluded that hand dryers are some of the worst things to have in a public bathroom, and are basically germ-spreading machines.

Researchers in the UK, France and Italy conducted tests in public hospitals, seeing how germs spread in bathrooms that use conventional hand dryers (i.e. those ones you could turn upside-down to blow-dry your hair in high school), the newer, jet-stream models, and classic paper towels.

Who needs dry hands when you’re dead?

The research concluded that not only were hand dryers more unhygienic but that the jetstream-based models (like the Dyson airblade) actually act as germ-spreading aerosol machines. In every instance, the bathrooms that used the latter style of hand dryers were more covered with bacteria, including a type of bacteria that’s immune to antibiotics, than other bathrooms in the study.

In other words, they’re not just not drying your hands, they’re spraying you with crazy germs and possibly making you super sick.

In their defence, Dyson, who make the most popular model of jetstream hand dryer, have criticised the study, saying that it goes against their own studies and modelling.

There are already calls for hand dryers of all makes to be banned from hospital bathrooms. In the meantime, it may be worth sticking to paper towels. It may be worse for the environment, but it certainly is better for your health.

How paper towel rolls are made. don’t @ me.

A Whole Bunch Of Common Food Additives Are Really, Really Bad For You, In Case You Needed Another Reason To Be Scared Of Everything

Everything from plasticware to gummi bears are probably slowly harming you.

A whole bunch of common food additives could result long-term health effects, a new report by the American Academy of Pediatrics has advised.

And it isn’t good enough to just use “BPA Free” products, as the chemicals listed are found in everything from plastic containers, grease baking paper, and gummy bears.

As well as being bad for you, gummi bears also hate Katy Perry

The chemicals singled out by the AAP include, but are not limited to, BPA, phthalates, perfluoroalkyl chemicals, nitrates, and artificial food colourings.

These chemicals interfere with the endocrine system, which helps regulate everything from child growth to sleep patterns. So the dangers of this stuff, especially in kids, is particularly pointed.

The major issue is that food regulation bodies, especially in the USA, haven’t really bothered to test these chemicals; some of the chemicals were last tested in the 1950’s, if at all.

Chemicals may explain his dance moves.

So, yet again, this is another issue of authorities not even bothering to protect consumers. Sound familiar?

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