Internet 911

New Jersey Issues Emergency Bulletin Over Idiotic ‘Fire Challenge’ Trend

Dumb. (Twitter)

Good work, teens. Besides saving helpless people from burning buildings, firefighters now have to devote their energy to worrying about your dumb, dangerous social media trend.

The New Jersey Division of Fire Safety recently released a statewide emergency bulletin warning firefighters and fire officials about the “Fire Challenge” craze, wherein teens are covering themselves in flammable liquid, lighting themselves on fire, and then documenting it on social media. Read More

Teen Beat

Online Deletion Law Would be Totally Helpful for Teens if Delete Buttons Didn’t Exist

She's pulling in a mill as we speak. (Photo via Getty)

We all remember the amazing judgment that came with being a teen. Sure, why not follow up those five shots of Captain with a giant bong rip? Nothing bad will come of hooking up with this terrible 23-year-old pill addict! And hey, Ugg boots with denim mini skirts? Chic.

Just kidding, the only thing worse than a teenager’s judgment is her acne. That, presumably, is why New Jersey state Senator Shirley Turner has introduced a bill that would allow minors to force websites to remove the content they themselves created and posted. Unfortunately, it seems to be just as useless as that California law that purports to do the same thing. Read More

texting while driving

Court Rules You Can Be Held Liable If You Text a Friend While They’re Driving and They Injure Someone

Stop it. (Photo: Wikimedia Commons)

Back in 2009, teenager Kyle Best drove his car into a couple on a motorcycle, injuring the man and woman so badly that they each lost a leg. Mr. Best had been texting at the time.

“I thank God that we’re still alive but I think there should be stiffer penalties,” victim Linda Kubert said after the accident, “The cell phone law has to be stronger.” Read More

glassholes

Duh, Casinos Aren’t Going to Let You Use Glass to Cheat at Blackjack

They'll come after you. (Photo: NBC)

Perhaps restrooms are the only place you might be able to wear Google Glass. Taking a cue from strip clubs, several state gaming commissions are barring the face computers from the premises for fear that people might use them to–what else?–cheat.

Earlier this week, New Jersey’s Division of Gaming Enforcement issued a memo to a dozen casinos banning gamblers from wearing the camera-equipped devices inside. The ban follows similar edicts in Pennsylvania, Nevada, Ohio, and Connecticut.  Read More

Linkages

Booting Up: Nevada Legalizes Online Gambling, Is New Jersey Next?

(Photo: NJ Governor's Office/Tim Larsen)

Twitter, Tumblr and Pinterest were hacked this week, after a security breach at customer-service provider Zendesk allowed a hacker to access user email addresses at the three social media companies. [Wired]

Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg’s book marketing plans include “Lean in Circles,” in which women study Ms. Sandberg’s curriculum for career success. [NYT]

Twitter cofounder Ev Williams talks about when—and when not—to sell your company. [Medium]

Nevada became the first state to legalize online gambling. New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie may sign a law legalizing Internet gambling in his state as early as next week. [The Washington Post]

If you’re a “startup junky,” what are you really addicted to? [PandoDaily]

Democracy!

Today, Let’s Remember Everything Hurricane Sandy Just Taught Us About Social Media Misinformation

REMAIN CALM. (Photo: Flickr.com/dpstyles)

Parts of New York and New Jersey are still without power from the last major news event and yet here we are, in the throes of election day. And with cleanup efforts still ongoing, there’s really no excuse for anyone who forgets one of the lessons we just learned about the rapid speed at which misinformation courses through social media in general and Twitter in particular.

For the love of God, as you go about your day for the next several hours, please take almost everything you read on Twitter with a grain of salt. No, a barrel. Maybe an entire salt lick. Read More