Content tagged “Online”

With tech taking over in schools, bills arise across US to curtail data collection

This year alone, Louisiana was among 36 states that introduced new legislation on student information privacy and security, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures, a bipartisan research group. And as The New York Times reports, the state's bill—which prohibits public school employees from collecting information about students' political or religious beliefs, family income, relationships with ministers or doctors, and gun ownership, as well as protects students or prospective students from having to give school officials access to their personal social media accounts or email addresses—was among about 30 bills passed nationwide. The bills are emerging as technology companies are collecting a vast amount of data about students, touching every corner of their educational lives—with few controls on how those details are used. Now California is poised to become the first state to comprehensively restrict how such information is exploited by the...

David Maples and Virginia Huling

David Maples moved with Virginia Huling to Baton Rouge in August 2007 to begin his studies at the LSU Law Center.

'Parish Heat' looking for greater online presence as print publication ceases

After circulating just six issues, Parish Heat—a biweekly newspaper highlighting local arrest records and mugshots—ceased print publication in December but continues to post news on arrests in East Baton Rouge Parish via its Facebook page, says publisher Tony Modica. The newspaper published its first edition in early September, but Modica says he quickly found that managing distribution of the print publication was not feasible. "We honestly thought that 20,000 copies would be enough to blanket Baton Rouge," Modica says, "but the interest was a whole lot more than we thought. We got so many phone calls asking, 'how come I didn't get one over here?' [Distribution] was almost a harder job than getting the stuff together." While Parish Heat's Facebook page has gained some traction—5,000 followers without active promotion—Modica says the...

The negative online review

Anyone who has ever Googled a product and clicked on "reviews" before buying it knows how important online feedback has become to business.

Local law firm now accepting Bitcoin for payment

Local real estate attorney Bryan G. Jeansonne kicked off the new year with a new way of doing business. On Wednesday, Jeansonne's firm, Dore Jeansonne, began accepting the digital currency Bitcoin as a method of payment, along with more traditional modes of payment like credit cards and personal checks. "A lot of people find it easier to use than regular currency," says Jeansonne, explaining why his firm decided to begin accepting Bitcoin. For those unfamiliar with the technology, Bitcoin is a four-year-old electronic currency that in many ways functions like any other currency. It was created by a software developer and is accepted as payment by a growing number of merchants, both online and in the real world. What makes Bitcoin unique is that it is decentralized and no single institution controls the Bitcoin network. Jeansonne says for his clients there are a couple of potential advantages to using the digital currency. "There are a lot fewer fees than payment processing companies...

Websites work to nix nasty comments

Mix blatant bigotry with poor spelling. Add a dash of ALL CAPS. Top it off with a violent threat. And there you have it: a recipe for the worst of online comments, scourge of the Internet. The Associated Press reports a growing number of websites are reining in the Wild West of online commentary. Companies including Google and the Huffington Post are trying everything from deploying moderators to forcing people to use their real names in order to restore civil discourse. Some sites, such as Popular Science, are banning comments altogether. Locally, The Advocate changed the way it displays readers comments this year to decrease anonymity and identify readers through their Facebook accounts. These and other efforts put sites in a delicate position. User comments add a lively, fresh feel to videos, stories and music. And, of course, the longer visitors stay to read the posts, and the more they come back, the more a site can charge for advertising. What websites don't want is the...