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Nearly one in four Americans made money over the last 12 months by using their personal computers or other devices connected to the I nternet.

The Pew Research Center, an independent research group in Washington, found that people are using the Internet to find extra work.

They go online to sell things such as used books and furniture or they offer to provide services such as babysitting, house cleaning or computer repairs.

The Pew Center asked people if they make money from the Internet or computing devices, and, if so, what they do to earn their pay. The answers provided the findings of Pew’s new report on what has been called the “Gig Economy.”

Pew found that income earned on the Internet can come in many forms. Many Americans said they used their computers to do extra work.

About five percent of Americans said they did online computer work over the last year. Some of these people said they had jobs that paid a few pennies each to take surveys. In these surveys, people are asked for their opinions of different products or well-known people.

Others typed reports or other information on their home computers.

Using digital devices to offer a service online was another way to earn income.

About two percent of Americans earned money from ride-sharing companies such as Uber and Lyft. When drivers are ready to pick up passengers, they use their ride-share company’s app. The computer program lets them know when passengers are ready to be picked up and how to reach them.

Some people make their homes, apartments, or rooms inside their homes, available for money to people visiting their cities. A popular website people use to makes rooms available is www.airbnb.com.

Other people use apps on their computer devices that permit people to hire them to babysit, walk dogs or do repair or clean-up work. Apps operated from phones or tablets connect them to people looking for such services.

How Much Does Online Work Pay?

About 60 percent of people involved in the gig economy say the income they earn is important to them. But just one in five people who sell things online say the income is enough to be important to their lives.

Only 16 percent believe doing online work will lead to a meaningful career.

But 37 percent say the extra income earned from online jobs helps them make up for shortages in money.

The number one reason people gave for taking online jobs was that the work gave them something to do and was fun. Pew said that reason was listed by 42 percent of people it questioned.

But, opinions about the online economy are mixed.

Sixty-eight percent say the gig economy is good for people who want flexibility when they work. Flexibility means they do not have to work when they are at their regular jobs or have family or school events or other things they want or need to do.

Some People Feel Computer Work Is Advantage Employer

But, 23 percent say online work lets companies take advantage of employees and only 16 percent believe they can build careers with gig work. By taking advantage, some people mean they do not get paid enough for work done through online companies.

About one in five say they take online jobs to gain work experience, while 17 percent say it is because they cannot find other jobs.

What kind of people work online or use online devices to find work? The answer appears to be: mostly people who already have jobs.

According to Pew, 68 percent say they are already employed full time or part time. Twenty-three percent say they are students. Thirty-two percent say they have no other jobs.

Author: Jonathan Evans

Source:  http://learningenglish.voanews.com/

Categorized in News & Politics

Barely a week has passed since the election of Donald J. Trump — and liberals are preparing for the fight of their lives. 

To defeat what they consider a radical presidential agenda without parallel in modern American history, they've already begun donating to favorite causes, coordinating protests and volunteering at an unprecedented level. Nonprofits and advocacy organizations, including the ACLU, the Anti-Defamation League and Planned Parenthood, have reported a remarkable surge in financial contributions. 

However bleak the prospect, taking on a radical Trump presidency could galvanize a new generation of grassroots activists whose influence would be felt for decades. If organizers succeed, it could herald a golden age of civic involvement on the left unlike anything since the 1960s, when people took to the streets en masse in support of civil rights and in protest of the Vietnam War. 

Only time will render a verdict, but the initial signs are promising. In five days, the nonpartisan ACLU received a record 120,000 donations worth $7.2 million to fund their work protecting civil liberties. Trump's election, said a spokesperson for Planned Parenthood, led to the biggest spike in donations in the past year. Meanwhile the nonprofit health provider's headquarters and affiliates were flooded with volunteer inquiries. Two hundred people reached out to one clinic in Philadelphia that normally gets a two dozen such requests in a week. The ADL, which fights anti-Semitism and bigotry, is seeing a similar effect, with calls to their regional offices coming in at much higher rates than usual. 

"I think people feel many things are under threat and that’s why they’ve rallied," Karin Johanson, national political director of the ACLU, told Mashable. 

While the left traditionally mobilizes against conservative presidents on certain issues, Trump is not a standard-issue Republican with a classic agenda of cutting taxes and regulation while enshrining religious values in policy.

There is justified fear that Trump's administration will attack federal protections and legislation sacred to nearly every group comprising the liberal coalition, including women, people of color, LGBTQ people, environmentalists and immigrants. 

Since the election, the president-elect has already discussed deporting as many as three million undocumented immigrants who he says have been convicted of crimes, though research suggests his estimation is high. If Trump delivers on his promise to conduct mass deportations, advocates worry his efforts will violate civil liberties and lead to racial profiling and illegal detentions.

But perhaps the most alarming development is the KKK's endorsement and embrace of Trump as well as his appointment of Stephen Bannon to a senior White House role. (Bannon is the chairman of Breitbart News Network, which has been described by the Southern Poverty Law Center, a hate-watch group, as a "white ethno-nationalist propaganda mill.") 

Calls to give Trump a chance and a clean slate have been met with the mantra that his rhetoric and his proposed agenda are "not normal." For those who oppose Trump, this is not just the next chapter in another partisan political war, but a grave threat to American democracy. So they are organizing to ensure he's unable to follow through on his promises.

Marcy Stech, vice president of communications for EMILY's List, a Democratic political action committee that works to put women in elected office, said the organization has been inundated with donations and interest in running for office. 

"Women across the country who have been motivated by this election are finding themselves in a position where they realize now is the time to step up," said Stech. 

Last week, 100 women leaders of color already at the forefront of local and nationwide movements published an open letter pledging "unity and determination" in pursuit of "liberty and justice for all." In a joint statement, California legislators also vowed to fight the most radical elements of Trumpism. "While Donald Trump may have won the presidency, he hasn’t changed our values ..." it read. "We will not be dragged back into the past. We will lead the resistance to any effort that would shred our social fabric or our Constitution." 

Such sweeping declarations have been paired with practical calls to action, including lobbying elected officials to denounce Bannon's appointment. A tweetstorm about how to contact one's representatives went viral over the weekend, and lists of companies that supported Trump have been circulated for those interested in boycotting businesses whose leaders appear to support his agenda.

Johanson said those interested in resisting any part of Trump's agenda could focus their energy on holding lawmakers accountable and working to tell the stories of people affected by his administration's policies and practices. That, she said, can "change the fabric of what people believe" by swaying public opinion on important, complicated political issues. 

Jamie Henn, cofounder of 350.org, a grassroots movement to protect the earth's climate, said that activists expect to face of an administration that is hostile to curbing the country's carbon emissions. They plan to fight any efforts on behalf of the Trump administration to dismantle the Environmental Protection Agency and withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. The recent appointment of Myron Ebell, a climate-change denier, to Trump's transition team overseeing the EPA, is a sign of battles to come.  

Ebell has called the Obama administration's Clean Power Plan illegal. The plan, which limits carbon emissions from coal power plants nationwide, is the centerpiece of Obama's climate agenda. Ebell has long received funding from the fossil fuel industry for his work to cast doubt on climate science.

"People, including ourselves, were shocked by the outcome of the election and are fired up about protecting the progress we’ve made and pushing back on Trump’s radical anti-environment policies," Henn said. 

"People ... are fired up about protecting the progress we’ve made and pushing back on Trump’s radical anti-environment policies." 

Liberal activists realize there may be opportunities for bipartisanship, and are willing to consider forging a path forward under the right circumstances. Henn, for example, cited the potential of addressing voters' economic woes with federal investments in renewable energy as a way of creating jobs across the country. 

Vicki Shabo, vice president at the National Partnership for Women & Families, said the passage of minimum wage and paid leave laws in a handful of states last Tuesday could provide a new opportunity for local, state and federal representatives to replicate those successes. Even Trump's paid parental leave plan, which Shabo considers highly flawed, could provide a starting point to secure comprehensive paid leave for parents at the federal level.

Yet, Shabo said, many advocates fear stalled progress and lost gains and are poised to mobilize people who have never been involved in the political process. 

"I think we can’t be silent," said Shabo. "These issues are too important and the stakes are too high to be quiet about what’s right."

Source: Mashable.com

Categorized in Others

Panicked Americans are researching how to emigrate online after early election results pointed to a shock election victory for Donald Trump. 

There was an explosion in search traffic on Google for terms such as "emigrate" and "how to emigrate to Canada" following the announcement of a series of victories in key swing states for the Republican nominee. 

Huge numbers of internet surfers worldwide also began googling the phrase "end of the world" when the news broke. 

And in Canada, the government's website crashed after it was inundated with visitors apparently researching how to become Canadian citizens. Mr Trump now stands before a clear path to election victory, having won the election battlegrounds of Florida, Ohio and North Carolina. 
 
The results have shocked pollsters, who until Tuesday night put his chances of winning at around 10 per cent. They have also seen the US dollar plunge, with stock markets thrown into disarray under the mounting evidence that Mr Trump could soon become America's next president. 
Canada's website crashed after being inundated with visitors
Canada's website crashed after being inundated with visitors
The Dow Jones Industrial Average sank by more than 750 points after initial returns showed the Republican candidate performing far better than expected in key battleground states.
 
And in Mexico, where Mr Trump is seen as a major threat to the country's economy, the peso slumped to a record low against the dollar. 
 
Neil Wilson, a markets expert at ETX Capital, described the situation as "chaotic", with many investors taking shelter. "There was a major sell-off in stocks while havens like the yen and gold are soaring as the Sunshine States gives Trump a very good chance at the White House," he said. 
 
 
"Dow futures are down more than 450 points and USD/JPY is trading at just above 102."Mexico's peso is getting whacked and has plunged to close to 20 against the dollar - down nearly 10% from its high earlier this morning."The proxy trade is speaking loud and clear at the moment."
 
Source : telegraph
Categorized in Others

Americans are heading to the polls to choose a new president after one of the most rancorous election campaigns the country has seen.

Voting gets under way in earnest on the East Coast from 06:00 EST (11:00 GMT), though some villages in New Hampshire have already polled.

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump criss-crossed America in a hectic last-minute campaign push for votes.

Results should begin emerging late on Tuesday night, US time, from 04:00 GMT.

Both candidates have held rallies in the battleground states of North Carolina, Pennsylvania and Michigan.

Mrs Clinton urged voters to back a "hopeful, inclusive, big-hearted America" while Mr Trump told supporters they had a "magnificent chance to beat the corrupt system".

Polls give Democrat Mrs Clinton a four-point lead over Republican Mr Trump.

A record number of Americans - more than 46 million - have voted early by post or at polling stations.

There are signs of a high turnout among Hispanic voters, which is believed to favour Mrs Clinton.

The rivals held the final rallies of their campaigns after midnight - Mr Trump in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and Mrs Clinton in Raleigh, North Carolina.

"Today the American working class is going to strike back, finally," said Mr Trump, pledging to reverse job losses.

Earlier, in New Hampshire, he told supporters: "We are just one day away from the change you've been waiting for all your life.

"Together we will make America wealthy again, we will make America strong again, we will make America safe again and we will make America great again."

Mrs Clinton told her audience that they did not "have to accept a dark and divisive vision of America".

She looked forward to "a fairer, stronger, better America. An America where we build bridges, not walls. And where we prove conclusively that love trumps hate".

Election day follows a bitter campaign during which the candidates have traded insults and become mired in a series of scandals.

At a star-studded event in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, Mrs Clinton was joined on stage by celebrities Bruce Springsteen and Jon Bon Jovi as well as her husband Bill, President Obama and his wife Michelle.

Earlier Mrs Clinton said in a radio interview that if she won she would call Mr Trump and hoped he would play a "constructive role" in helping to bring the country together.

At his rally in Scranton in the same state, Mr Trump insisted the momentum was with his campaign.

The businessman described Mrs Clinton as the "most corrupt person ever to seek the presidency", referring to an FBI investigation into Mrs Clinton's use of a private email server while she was serving as secretary of state between 2009 and 2013.

On Sunday Mrs Clinton's campaign received a boost when the FBI said newly discovered emails sent by an aide showed no evidence of criminality.

Election day voting began just after midnight in the small New Hampshire village of Dixville Notch, where seven votes were cast - four for Mrs Clinton, two for Mr Trump and one for the libertarian Gary Johnson.

Results are expected some time after 23:00 EST (04:00 GMT on Wednesday) once voting ends on the West Coast. State projections will not be available until polling ends - in most states between 19:00 EST (24:00 GMT) and 20:00 EST (01:00 GMT).

Americans are also voting for Congress. All of the House of Representatives - currently Republican controlled - is up for grabs, and a third of seats in the Senate, which is also in Republican hands.

US election: The essentials

Meanwhile Mr Trump's campaign manager Kellyanne Conway sought to allay international anxiety about the Republican candidate in a BBC interview on Monday.

She said criticism from abroad "does not reflect why Donald Trump is running and who he would be on the global stage".

French President Francois Hollande has said the billionaire made him "want to retch".

It follows a series of sex assault allegations made against Mr Trump, which he denies, and the emergence of a recording of him making obscene remarks about women.

Mr Trump has also been accused of stoking xenophobic sentiment after vowing to ban Muslims from entering the US, describing Mexicans as "rapists" and saying he would build a wall along the US southern border to stop illegal immigration.

Source : bbc

Categorized in News & Politics

Bryan Cranston, Miley Cyrus and others may be headed overseas if they don’t get their way on Election Day

It's not uncommon for people to joke/threaten about leaving the U.S. if the "wrong" person becomes president. But Donald Trump has Hollywood in such a froth that loads of celebrities are now talking about pulling up stakes. Here's a small collection of them, ranging from silly jokes to serious plans.

Lena Dunham has been one of the most active celebrity Clinton supporters out there, but she saysshe'll move to Canadaif Trump wins: "I know a lovely place in Vancouver, and I can get my work done from there."

While promoting "The Hateful Eight,"Samuel L. Jacksontold Jimmy Kimmelthat in the wake of a Trump victory he would "move my black ass to South Africa."

Trump's Super Tuesday victory in the primaries leftMiley Cyrusdistraught. She hasn't said where she'll go, but promised onInstagramthat "I am moving if this is my president! I don't say things I don't mean!"

Cherhas a history of feuding with Trump even before he announced his candidacy and has been often asked about what she thinks about his attempts to become President.Chertweetedthat if he wins she will "move to Jupiter."

IfCherdoes get a SpaceX flight to another planet, she might haveJon Stewartas her window-seat buddy, as he joked to People Magazine that he “would consider getting in a rocket and going to another planet, because clearly this planet’s gone bonkers.”

Even before Trump officially got nominated, she promised on The View thatshe would leavefor Canada if any Republican got elected: "I literally bought my ticket, I swear."

Natasha Lyonne might not leave the country, but whenasked by Starzwhere she might go, she said she might check herself into a mental hospital.

George Lopez toldTMZthat he would move south of the border if Trump won, and that other Latinos would come with him: "If he wins, he won't have to worry about immigration; we'll all go back."

Al Sharptonsaid in Februarythat he had "reserved his ticket" to leave if Trump won and that he would support anyone necessary to beat him.

"House of Cards" star Neve Campbell is a natural-born Canadian citizen, so for her moving to another country is easy, and she's said she'sready to do it.

Chelsea Handler toldKelly Ripaon "Live!" that her plans to move aren't just words. She has already bought a house in Spain and is ready to go if necessary.

Barbra Streisand has been hitting the campaign trail hard for Hillary, but she too is ready to abandon ship if her campaign fails. She said she would decide between moving to Australia and Canada if Trump takes office.

In the final days of the campaign,Bryan Cranstonadded his name to the exodus list: "I would definitely move. ... It's not real to me that that would happen. I hope to God it won't."

But some threats to leave America are a bit more tongue-in-cheek. Take Spike Lee, who vowed to respond to a Trump victory by "moving back to the republic of Brooklyn."

Source : thewrap

Categorized in News & Politics

The sparsely populated Spratly Islands, a collection of hundreds of islands and reefs spread over roughly 165,000 square miles in the South China Sea, are very quickly becoming the center of one of the most contentious international disputes between world powers since the fall of the Soviet Union.

Alarmingly, the use of cyber attacks in this dispute suggests we might already be in the midst of a new Cold War playing out in cyberspace — where America’s advantage is not as clear as it is with conventional armies and navies.

The Spratly Islands are of economic and strategic importance. All of the countries in the region — including China, Vietnam and the Philippines — have made competing territorial claims to the region. In recent years, China has become increasingly aggressive in its claim, rapidly building artificial islands while also conducting military operations in the area.

Beyond this conventional military build up, however, are complex and brazen cyber attacks by China that are leaving America and its allies increasingly concerned.

A massive distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack knocked offline at least 68 Philippine government websites in July, apparently in response to an international court ruling that denied China’s territorial claims in the region. Just days later, Vietnam’s national airline and major airports were targeted in a series of attacks by the Chinese hacking group 1937CN.

Those are just the latest examples of China’s years long cyber campaign related to the Spratly Islands. (In another attack, the website of the aforementioned international court was infected with malware and taken offline last year.)

While these “nuisance” attacks — and continued cyber espionage by China — are serious, targeted Chinese cyber attacks designed to impact America’s physical military systems in the South China Sea are the most substantial evidence that we may be on the brink of a more tangible cyber threat to American military power.

 
The challenge is that the capabilities and sophistication of state-sponsored and non-state hackers are increasing exponentially.

China appears to be moving forward with plans to use electronic attacks designed to either disrupt or take control of American drones. With reports that the Chinese attempted to interfere with U.S. military drones at least once in recent years, the country has shown a willingness to use GPS jamming to prevent U.S. aircraft from conducting surveillance missions in the Spratly Islands.

That 2015 instance appears to fit China’s public posturing on the ways it says it could use electronic GPS jamming to disrupt U.S. drone networks. One 2013 report in the Chinese journal Aerospace Electronic Warfare notes in technical detail how its military can “use network warfare to attack and even control America’s network” by disrupting the connection between satellites and aircraft.

This sort of GPS jamming could be the largest electronic threat to the U.S. drone program. In fact, it has been widely speculated that Iran used a similar GPS “spoofing” technique to take control of a U.S. surveillance drone in 2011.

The American military says it is preparing for these sorts of attacks with its new cyber strategy released last year. In addition to outlining how cyber will be included in military planning, the report calls for a hardening of the military’s cyber defenses to prevent the theft of military technology or cyber attacks against military infrastructure and weaponry.

The challenge, as any expert in the cybersecurity world would tell you, is that the capabilities and sophistication of the Chinese, Russians and other state-sponsored and non-state hackers are increasing exponentially. One only has to read the news to see nearly daily evidence of this (e.g. the recent suspected NSA breechhacks targeting Democratic political organizations, the attack against the State Department’s email system or the theft of military intel in the OPM hack).

The relatively inexpensive cyber options being employed today by both state and non-state hacking groups make it an incredibly efficient “leveler” of power. A small group of hackers using simple spear-phishing tactics, for example, can have massive impact on military installations, government operations, critical infrastructure and potentially even weapons systems.

The unconventional battle playing out in the South China Sea — where cyber attacks are taking the place of conventional fighting and other forms of diplomacy — is a new model of warfare. The growing cyber threat from China may pose the most immediate threat to America and its allies because, while the U.S. continues to have a clear conventional military advantage, our advantage in cyber is not as clear.

Source :  https://techcrunch.com

Categorized in Internet Privacy

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