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Saturday, October 8, 2016

Wired magazine has an article about a Google initiative to monitor the Internet for trolling using machine learning, and other initiatives in its Jigsaw division.

The head of the organization is Jared Cohen, who used to work for the State Department in digital activism.

The article says:
When Cohen became the youngest person ever to join the State Depart­ment’s Policy Planning Staff in 2006, he brought with him a notion that he’d formed from seeing digitally shrewd Middle Eastern youths flout systems of control: that the Internet could be a force for political empowerment and even upheaval. And as Facebook, then YouTube and Twitter, started to evolve into tools of protest and even revolution, that theory earned him access to officials far above his pay grade—all the way up to secretaries of state Condo­leezza Rice and later Hillary Clinton. Rice would describe Cohen in her memoirs as an “inspired” appoint­ment. Former Policy Planning director Anne-Marie Slaughter, his boss under Clinton, remembers him as “ferociously intelligent.”

Many of his ideas had a digital twist. After visiting Afghanistan, Cohen helped create a cell-phone-based payment system for local police, a move that allowed officers to speed up cash trans­fers to remote family members. And in June of 2009, when Twitter had scheduled downtime for maintenance during a massive Iranian protest against hardliner president Mahmoud Ahmadi­nejad, Cohen emailed founder Jack Dorsey and asked him to keep the service online. The unauthorized move, which violated the Obama administra­tion’s noninterference policy with Iran, nearly cost Cohen his job. But when Clinton backed Cohen, it signaled a shift in the State Department’s relationship with both Iran and Silicon Valley.
Asking Twitter to voluntarily stay up - which incidentally would have helped Iranian dissidents - was considered interference and a firing offense?

It sure sounds like Obama was not only ambivalent towards Iranian dissidents, but was actively supporting the antisemitic Islamist thug who was Iran's president and cutting off  his opponents at the knees.

Shouldn't this be big news?




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