theatlantic
theatlantic:

What Does It Really Matter If Corporations Are Tracking Us Online?

Say you, like me, went to bed a little early last night. And when you woke up this morning, you decided to catch the episode of the Daily Show that you missed. So you pointed your browser over to thedailyshow.com, and there, as you expected, is John Oliver. But there’s something else there too, at least if you’re me: flashing deals for hotels in Annapolis, which just so happens to be where I’ve been planning a weekend away.
We all are familiar at this point with the targeted ads that follow us around the web, linked to our browsing history. In this case, Google (who served me this ad) only got it half right: I had already booked a place.
And yet, I am planning a trip to Annapolis, and Google “knows” this, and is using this information to try to sell me stuff, a practice commonly criticized as “creepy.” But as philosopher Evan Selinger asserted in Slate last year, the word “creepy” isn’t particularly illuminating. What, really, is wrong with ad tracking? Why does it bother us? What is the problem?
Read more. [Image: AP]

theatlantic:

What Does It Really Matter If Corporations Are Tracking Us Online?

Say you, like me, went to bed a little early last night. And when you woke up this morning, you decided to catch the episode of the Daily Show that you missed. So you pointed your browser over to thedailyshow.com, and there, as you expected, is John Oliver. But there’s something else there too, at least if you’re me: flashing deals for hotels in Annapolis, which just so happens to be where I’ve been planning a weekend away.

We all are familiar at this point with the targeted ads that follow us around the web, linked to our browsing history. In this case, Google (who served me this ad) only got it half right: I had already booked a place.

And yet, I am planning a trip to Annapolis, and Google “knows” this, and is using this information to try to sell me stuff, a practice commonly criticized as “creepy.” But as philosopher Evan Selinger asserted in Slate last year, the word “creepy” isn’t particularly illuminating. What, really, is wrong with ad tracking? Why does it bother us? What is the problem?

Read more. [Image: AP]

mothernaturenetwork
unconsumption:

Is there a downside to the banning of plastic bags? Possibly:

An interesting development in recycling—one that you’re bound to have mixed feelings about: As more individual businesses and municipalities are starting to ban both paper and plastic bags, or impose fees to discourage their use, it’s pissing off a certain group of people.
No, not consumers. Recyclers.
The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, or ISRI, yesterday fired a blast out of their e-mail gun stating “Policymakers are banning bags and creating fees without considering the real impact on recycling, and the recycling industry… Rather than bans and fees that take away jobs and increase costs to consumers, policy makers should take advantage of the great economic and environmental opportunities associated with responsibly recycling these bags.” They followed this up with some surprising statistics: 
In the United States, approximately 77 percent of paper mills rely on recovered fiber to make some or all of their products thanks in part to recovered paper’s significant cost and energy savings. Recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees, 79 gallons of oil, 7,000 gallons of water, and 3.3 cubic yards of landfill space. According to the U.S. EPA, plastic recycling results in significant energy savings, an estimated 50-75 million Btus/ton of material recycled.

More: Paper and Plastic Bag Bans Continue. And Recyclers Ain’t Happy About It - Core77

unconsumption:

Is there a downside to the banning of plastic bags? Possibly:

An interesting development in recycling—one that you’re bound to have mixed feelings about: As more individual businesses and municipalities are starting to ban both paper and plastic bags, or impose fees to discourage their use, it’s pissing off a certain group of people.

No, not consumers. Recyclers.

The Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries, or ISRI, yesterday fired a blast out of their e-mail gun stating “Policymakers are banning bags and creating fees without considering the real impact on recycling, and the recycling industry… Rather than bans and fees that take away jobs and increase costs to consumers, policy makers should take advantage of the great economic and environmental opportunities associated with responsibly recycling these bags.” They followed this up with some surprising statistics: 

In the United States, approximately 77 percent of paper mills rely on recovered fiber to make some or all of their products thanks in part to recovered paper’s significant cost and energy savings. Recycling one ton of paper saves 17 trees, 79 gallons of oil, 7,000 gallons of water, and 3.3 cubic yards of landfill space. According to the U.S. EPA, plastic recycling results in significant energy savings, an estimated 50-75 million Btus/ton of material recycled.

More: Paper and Plastic Bag Bans Continue. And Recyclers Ain’t Happy About It - Core77

ucresearch

ucresearch:

Also here’s a great map put out by Save the Redwoods League that shows where California’s redwoods exist.