20th April 2018

Other Stories - 20th April 2018

Photo: RZSS/Siân Addison

Wetherspoons quits social media. At a time when people are increasingly questioning how much information they share online, it’s little surprise to hear stories of individuals ditching their accounts. More surprising, however, is the decision of pub chain Wetherspoons, who have announced plans to drop their social media presence entirely. The decision was reportedly made in response to the recent trolling of MPs, although many commentators have suggested it could be a publicity stunt. The Guardian

Millennials don’t like touching raw meat, apparently. That seems to be the thinking behind Sainsbury’s plans for so-called ‘touch-free’ meat packaging for its chicken pieces, which will enable consumers to ‘rip and tip’ them straight in to the frying pan without coming in to contact with it. The plan has received a mixed reaction, with many expressing concerns that the supermarket chain is adding yet more unnecessary packaging whilst their competitors are aiming to reduce it. The Independent

Mark Zuckerberg made $4bn during his interrogation by congress. When the Facebook founder was summoned to testify at Capitol Hill last week about the use of users’ personal data, many were anticipating a showdown for the ages. What happened instead was a fairly lightweight line of questioning. Investors were clearly Impressed by Zuckerberg’s performance, with Facebook shares seeing their best single day of trading in two years, closing 4.5 per cent up, increasing his own personal net worth by just under $4bn in the process. New Statesman

Facial recognition software at a pop concert led to a man’s arrest. Chinese police used the technology to identify a wanted man in a crowd of 60,000 people. The man in question was reportedly wanted for “economic crimes” and was identified by cameras at the concert's ticket entrance. He was subsequently apprehended by police as he took his seat. Footage of the suspect in police custody showed him declaring that he wouldn't have gone to the concert had he known about the cameras. BBC News

A noise complaint has silenced a fruit and veg seller. Wayne Bellows, who has spent his working life as a market seller in Lymington, Hampshire received a gagging order from the council following a noise complaint. Bellows’ loudest shouts have reportedly reached more than 100 decibels, which is roughly the equivalent to a rock concert. "The whole thing is completely bizarre and absolutely ridiculous,” he remarked. “Not to mention ironic because of my name.” Evening Standard

Ethics should be integral to the future of AI. According to the UK’s first public inquiry in to the development of AI, it appears that laws governing the use and effects of AI are currently unclear. The House of Lords Select Committee on Artificial Intelligence asked the Law Commission to investigate whether UK law was sufficient when systems malfunction or cause harm to users. The inquiry recommended an international "AI code", based on principles of fairness, education and avoidance of wrongdoing that will ensure the UK becomes a world leader in the application of machine learning. Sky News

A former Auschwitz guard has been charged after 76 years. The unnamed suspect, now 94 years-old, was charged as a juvenile, having been just 19 at the time. He reportedly served as a guard at the concentration camp in late 1942 and early 1943, during which time an estimated 13,335 people were sent to the gas chambers. The suspect claims he wasn’t aware of the background and aims of what was happening at the time and has been charged on the premise that, as a guard, he helped the camp to function. The Independent

The first polar bear cub born in the UK in 25 years is a boy. Born at the Highland Wildlife Park in December last year, staff at the Royal Zoological Society of Scotland park have only just been able to confirm the baby polar bear’s gender following a health check last week. Staff at the park are currently preparing a list of potential names for the public to choose from for the cub. We suspect that ‘Beary McBearface’ won’t be one of them. BBC News

Fact of the week

Trains across Britain are missing up to 160 stops per day. That’s according to new figures from Network Rail, which shows that more than 52,500 services out of a planned six million encountered one or more so-called "failure to stop" events in the last financial year. Services operated by Govia Thameslink, which runs Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern, accounted for 16,000 of these events. Skipping stops is generally considered a last resort to prevent further disruption. BBC News

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