Day: January 9, 2020

Reddit bests Facebook by rolling out a superior deepfakes policy

Reddit bests Facebook by rolling out a superior deepfakes policy

Reddit and Facebook are two very different social media platforms. As true as that may be, however, it’s difficult not to conclude “shots fired” with the timing of the former’s newest policy.

On Thursday, the popular social news site unveiled a brand new policy meant to curb impersonation and maliciously deceptive media on the platform. 

The new Reddit policy reads as follows:

Basically, Reddit is quashing lies and disinformation on the site. Users cannot try to legitimately pass off as another individual or entity. For example, a user cannot register the username of a celebrity and truly pretend to be that celebrity on the site. While that’s the most weaponized scenario, Reddit is also specific in pointing out forgery and fake articles, and links are covered under this policy too.  Read more…

More about Facebook, Reddit, Misinformation, Impersonation, and Deepfakes

How Companies Should Handle Office Romance

We spend more of our waking day at work than anywhere else. Throughout our careers, we come across many new faces and form strong connections with those we work with.

Spending so much time with the same people leads us to build strong friendships and for some, more than that. Office supply company Viking has conducted research to find out how common romance in the workplace is and what effect it has on those who have been involved with someone at their office.

Is Office Romance Becoming More Popular?

to deal with office romance

From a single kiss to marriage, 5,000 workers across Europe were quizzed on their experience of office romance. In the UK, over two-thirds (68%) said they have been involved in an office romance. This shows how common it is in the workplace.

Of the 68% who said they have experienced office romance, 20% were lucky enough to say it ended in marriage or a civil partnership. With so many people finding that someone special in the office, it’s important employers address this to ensure the best outcome for employees and the business.

Viking’s research shows a rise in office romance among the younger generation. 24% of 25 to 34-year-old employees said they have had or are in a long-term relationship with a colleague. That’s compared to 12% of over 65s. Over half (53%) of the same age group also said they would consider a romantic relationship with a colleague in the future. This makes it even more important that businesses know how to deal with office romance.

The Effects of Office Romance In the Workplace

To shine some light on the effects office romance can have on employees during work hours, Viking questioned those who had dated a colleague about how this impacted office life.

There were some positive responses. However, those who have been in a relationship in the workplace voiced mainly negative opinions on how they felt the relationship affected their time at work.

A full list of the positive and negative effects of romance on workers is included below:

Increases productivity & creativity – 11%
Decreases productivity & creativity – 37%

Reduces stress levels – 17%
Increases stress levels – 21%

Positive impact on wellbeing – 22%
Negative impact on wellbeing – 20%

Boosts work motivation – 12%
Reduces work motivation – 7%

Improves focus – 5%
Is distracting – 26%

Positive effect on your career – 6%
Negative effect on your career – 16%

As you can see, people had different opinions on whether office relationships have a positive or negative effect on those involved.

But the two most popular responses were that office romance decreases productivity (37%) and can be distracting (24%).

How to Deal With Office Romance

To limit any negative effects on the workplace from office romances, below are some guidelines managers and HR departments can follow.

Train Management on Office Romance

It can be as simple as creating an environment where employees are comfortable openly discussing office romance.

42% of UK workers said the worst thing about their relationship with a colleague was being the subject of gossip. A further third (33%) felt they needed to keep it from HR.

If employees are familiar with office romance and feel confident approaching their peers or managers to discuss their relationship, there is less risk of it being either a secret or a subject of gossip.

To help encourage an environment where business can operate as usual around the natural social relationships formed between colleagues, providing training to managers and HR on office romance is advisable.

Relationships are likely to be stressful when it influences employee’s ability to do their job. If managers are aware and have the correct training, then they can help employees remain professional and leave the personal things at home.

As shown by Viking’s study, relationships can improve well-being and boost motivation. It’s important for employers to ensure they don’t decrease productivity and cause distractions.

Introduce a Romance Policy

A vital part of communicating when it comes to office romance is having a policy that clarifies the companies’ attitudes toward internal relationships. As mentioned before, it wouldn’t benefit employees or the business to forbid employees from engaging in relationships.

However, setting out a romance policy can help protect the business against potential HR issues. It can also help outline the conduct expected from those in a relationship.

This is something that needs addressing by companies around the UK as just 33% of employees are aware of their employer’s policy on office romance. If employees understand how they’re expected to behave, it will stop their relationship from impacting their work life and those around them.

Without a policy, behavior in the office when involved in a relationship is left to the judgment of employees. This could lead to distractions and unwanted arguments. The differing opinions on what’s acceptable could cause friction between employees.

A fair office romance policy is the obvious solution. It’s down to you to include what you feel will best benefit the business.

dealing with office romance

Keep Your Door Open

Office romance can harm employees’ ability to do their job. This is why it’s important that it doesn’t slide under the carpet.

Giving time to employees who want to discuss confidential subjects is important. It gives you a clear understanding of the happenings in your team. Turning a blind eye won’t solve anything. Relationships can turn sour and you should be on the lookout to protect your employees and the business.

An office romance that isn’t going so well is far more likely to lead to the negative impacts highlighted earlier on. Showing you understand and doing what you can to support employees if needed will build trust and help maintain productivity.

This handy guide on how to deal with office romance will help you keep your employees happy while taking care of your business’ interest. People spend more time at work than anywhere else and see no one more than their co-workers.

Therefore, romance is expected in the workplace. Finding ways to increase the positives and decrease the negatives caused is the secret to success for businesses around the UK.

See Also: Redefining Office Culture To Boost Employee Satisfaction and Productivity

The post How Companies Should Handle Office Romance appeared first on Dumb Little Man.

Australian insurer Suncorp’s claims hit $237 million as bushfires rage on

Australian insurer Suncorp Group said on Thursday it has received since September 2,600 bushfire-related claims worth up to A$345 million ($237.05 million), of which nearly a third was recorded in the first few days of the month. Suncorp on Thursday joined its larger rival Insurance Australia Group , which flagged costs of A$280 million last week related to the bushfires, which have scorched huge swathes of land killing 26 people and killing or inj

Australian insurer Suncorp’s claims hit $237 million as bushfires rage on

Australian insurer Suncorp Group said on Thursday it has received since September 2,600 bushfire-related claims worth up to A$345 million ($237.05 million), of which nearly a third was recorded in the first few days of the month. Suncorp on Thursday joined its larger rival Insurance Australia Group , which flagged costs of A$280 million last week related to the bushfires, which have scorched huge swathes of land killing 26 people and killing or inj

Australian insurer Suncorp’s claims hit $237 million as bushfires rage on

Australian insurer Suncorp Group said on Thursday it has received since September 2,600 bushfire-related claims worth up to A$345 million ($237.05 million), of which nearly a third was recorded in the first few days of the month. Suncorp on Thursday joined its larger rival Insurance Australia Group , which flagged costs of A$280 million last week related to the bushfires, which have scorched huge swathes of land killing 26 people and killing or inj

Australian insurer Suncorp’s claims hit $237 million as bushfires rage on

Australian insurer Suncorp Group said on Thursday it has received since September 2,600 bushfire-related claims worth up to A$345 million ($237.05 million), of which nearly a third was recorded in the first few days of the month. Suncorp on Thursday joined its larger rival Insurance Australia Group , which flagged costs of A$280 million last week related to the bushfires, which have scorched huge swathes of land killing 26 people and killing or inj

Stephen Colbert feels very reassured by Trump’s tweets about Iran

Stephen Colbert feels very reassured by Trump's tweets about Iran

“It’s not World War Three, and that’s wonderful,” Stephen Colbert said during his Late Show opening monologue on Wednesday. “But it’s not like nothing happened.”

The world has been more on edge than usual since Trump ordered the assassination of Iranian military leader Qassem Soleimani on Jan. 3. Iran subsequently retaliated, attacking two U.S. military bases with 22 missiles. 

Many Americans are feeling uneasy, but as Colbert points out, fortunately President Trump was there to tweet empty platitudes at the public. “It’s okay folks, it’s okay,” said Colbert. “We’ve achieved Defcon Fine.” Read more…

More about Iran, Donald Trump, Stephen Colbert, The Late Show With Stephen Colbert, and Culture

Together with portfolio company AMP Robotics, Sidewalk Labs launches recycling pilot in Toronto

Nearly a year after China stopped accepting the world’s garbage, cities around the globe are wrestling with what to do with all of their waste. 

China’s new policy, which once accepted 70% of municipal solid waste generated around the world, means that cities like New York, London, and Paris need to find a new way to deal with their dumps. In Toronto, the municipal government is targeting a 70 percent reduction in the amount of recyclables and organics that are going into landfills or waste disposal by 2026.

The goal is made more difficult by one problem that cities have in common — multi-tenant residences (like apartments, condos, and coops) have a hard time organizing waste for recycling and landfills.

That’s why Sidewalk Labs and its portfolio company AMP Robotics are working on a pilot program that would provide residents of a single apartment building representing 250 units in Toronto with detailed information about their recycling habits.

“Multi-family buildings are notoriously hard for sorting. Single family has 60 to 70 percent diversion rates,” says Emily Kildow, Associate Director of Sustainability at Sidewalk Labs.

Working with the building and a waste hauler, Sidewalk Labs would transport the waste to a Canada Fibers material recovery facility where trash will be sorted by both Canada Fibers employees and AMP Robotics. Once the waste is categorized, sorted, and recorded Sidewalk will communicate with residents of the building about how they’re doing in their recycling efforts.

Sidewalk says that the tips will be communicated through email, an online portal, and signage throughout the building every two weeks over a three-month period.

For residents, it’s an opportunity to have a better handle on what they can and can’t recycle and Sidewalk Labs is betting that the information will help residents improve their habits. And for folks who don’t want their trash to be monitored and sorted, they can opt out of the program.

If that hypothesis is correct, it’s a technology that could potentially help other cities facing similar predicaments.

Sidewalk is also aware of the privacy concerns that could arise from having the trash monitored by its portfolio company, so in concert with the city, the company created a Responsible Data Use Assessment process and is assuring residents that any data collected will be de-identified and aggregated and only focus on the types of waste that’s being thrown out.

“The non-personal, aggregate data about the waste recorded by the materials recovery facility and AMP will be shared with Sidewalk Labs, residents in the buildings, and building owners,” the company said. “Once the pilot is complete, Sidewalk Labs will share a report to the public using the same aggregate and non-identifying data.”