The IRS had been placing bounties on the heads of deadbeat taxpayers for the past few years, giving debt collection agencies a 25 percent cut of delinquent debts they rounded up. But since March, the IRS is no longer supporting the program. Thanks to Samuel for pointing out the announcement.
Newsweek has an article that you should not read if you’re especially paranoid. Why? Because it says that according to a security consultant — the percentage of US cellphones that have been tapped with spyware could be as high as 3%.
125 Years is the length of time it will take a totally abandoned wood frame house to simply fall down. What should we do with them in the meantime? [CR]
The global economy is crashing, credit markets are playing ice age, and you consumers have a simple choice: buy things now or prepare to be stabbed next year.
Ugh, those selfish pilots can’t be bothered to help their airlines return to profitability. No, instead they’re whining to NASA that they’re being forced to fly “uncomfortably low on fuel” and that “safety for passengers and crews could be compromised.”
Last week we told you about how Viacom was sending fraudulent ownership claims to indie filmmakers on YouTube. A few days after our post went up about how they were doing this to animator Joanna Davidovich, a Viacom executive got in touch with her to explain what happened.
Viacom is sending bogus copyright ownership claims and illegal posting notices to independent filmmakers posting their own movies on YouTube. These films contain not one iota of Viacom content. Take, for instance, this lovely short animation, “Juxtaposer,” made by Joanna Davidovich for her senior project. It’s completely her original creation. She has copyrighted it and says that she “only entered into distribution agreements that were nonexclusive.” Yet, the media corporation saw fit to have YouTube tell Joanna, “Viacom has claimed some or all audio and visual content in your video.”
MarketWatch says that Wal-Mart is “very interested in expanding into installation and repair services in its fast-growing electronics segment.”
12-year-old Megan Templeton was shopping with her father for some watermelons and hamburgers for their Memorial Day cook-out when she was stung by a stowaway scorpion that had made a home in the produce section of her local Walmart.
John can’t understand how Wachovia charged his startup $12 in fees for failing to maintain a minimum balance when his company never opened an account with Wachovia in the first place. Apparently, his former bank manager decamped to Wachovia and, without his permission, opened a new account “to ensure certain money rates,” whatever that means. John isn’t mad, and the bank manager agreed to close the account, but John is a little worried because a collections agency has started calling and the account now lists $24.05 in fees.
A piece of a US Airways jet has fallen off and landed somewhere in Maryland. [ABC2]
Where’s my tinfoil? Comcast’s senior VP of user experience, Gerard Kunkel, apparently wants to put a camera in your cable box and use it to serve ads.
Reader Monique says that she used Crest Pro-Health Mouthwash and woke up with brown spots on her teeth and no sense of taste. How terrifying!
Gorton’s said it ordered the recall as a precaution while a laboratory conducts tests to determine the nature of the pills. Those tests should be complete early next week.
Microsoft has been trying to make Google seem like a threat to privacy, when in fact it’s both of them,” says Jeff Chester, the executive director of the Center for Digital Democracy (CDD). “We may now have two companies that will rival the National Security Agency in their ability to compile detailed profiles of users wherever they go online.”
BusinessWeek has an article that shines some light on a conflict of interest between the airlines and the FAA safety inspectors. It’s the inspector’s job to make sure the airlines are operating safely—but inspectors who blow the whistle may face pressure from the airlines and retaliation from the FAA’s upper management
The inspectors are the on-the-ground cops who ensure that engines fire up properly, that the wing flaps function, and that all of the other complex machinery in an aircraft is in good working order. They have broad discretion to halt and delay flights–power that often rankles the thinly stretched, financially strapped carriers. When an inspector launches a formal investigation into an apparent safety violation at a passenger airline, something that happened more than 200 times last year, it often triggers costly repairs. And when the bill exceeds $50,000, the FAA must issue a press release alerting the world to the problem.