March 30, 2017 Last Updated 7:57 am

The Long + Short to cease publishing; North Carolina lawmakers to vote on repeal of controversial bathroom bill

Morning Brief: The Verge columnist says Congress ‘betrayed you for chump change’ in bill allowing ISPs to gather and sell their customer’s browsing data

The Long + Short announced today that it would cease publishing. The magazine and newsletter was published by Nesta, the UK innovation foundation.

“Over the last two and a half years we have aimed to tell you stories of innovation that challenge, entertain and inspire,” the editors wrote online and in an email to e-newsletter readers. “Stories of entrepreneurship, new ideas and how the world is changing, ones we felt were better told journalistically rather than through formalised research, striving to bring Nesta’s point of view to new audiences and to promote and inspire ideas of innovation for public good in new ways.”

The magazine’s archive will remain open, however, and the magazine’s content was published under a Creative Commons license which would allow other publishers to use the material so long as it is properly credited. (Creative Commons allows TNM to use some amazing photography here in order to better present subjects.)

Republican lawmakers have reached an agreement with the state’s Democratic governor which would repeal the state’s controversial bathroom bill, known as HB2. The compromise would repeal the original bill which would force transgender resident to use the bathroom of their birth gender rather than that which they identify.

The bill will be voted on today, ahead of a deadline set by the NCAA demanding changes to the law or else the organization would continue to avoid scheduling tournaments in the state. The bathroom bill cost the state at least $3.7 billion, according to one analysis.

Photo: Public Restroom by tyl_r used under Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic

The Washington Post, Mark Berman:

North Carolina lawmakers say they’ve agreed on a deal to repeal the bathroom bill

The controversial law, House Bill 2 (or “H.B. 2”), is largely known for its provisions that require people to use public restrooms that match the sex on their birth certificates rather than their gender identities. But it also had other, more far-reaching provisions, limiting some minimum-wage standards and reversing local ordinances that had expanded protections for LGBT people.

Since H.B. 2 was signed, North Carolina has watched as companies abandoned plans to expand in the state, entertainers canceled shows and sports leagues pulled some games and vowed to keep out more. The most recent such threat, coming from the NCAA, gave lawmakers until Thursday to change the law if it wants to host any college sports championships through 2022.

Charlotte Observer, Colin Campbell and Jim Morrill (beware of pop-up ads):

Lawmakers vote Thursday on deal to repeal HB2

Senate Minority Leader Dan Blue said Wednesday afternoon that he, Cooper and Republican leaders had been negotiating “over the past 48 hours in a joint effort to find common ground and repeal House Bill 2.”

“We have been dealing with varying philosophical differences on a wide range of points related to House Bill 2 itself and various compromise proposals,” Blue said in a news release. “This is too important and we can’t throw in the towel on this.”

For some HB2 opponents, the proposed compromise was too much. Rep. Cecil Brockman, one of two openly LGBT lawmakers, slammed the door in frustration when leaving a caucus meeting. The Human Rights Campaign and Equality NC issued a news release as negotiations continued.

“The rumored HB2 ‘deal’ does nothing more than double-down on discrimination and would ensure North Carolina remains the worst state in the nation for LGBTQ people,” HRC President Chad Griffin said in a statement. “The consequences of this hateful law will only continue without full repeal of HB2. Sellouts cave under pressure. Leaders fight for what’s right.”

Samsung yesterday unveiled its new Galaxy S8 handset and the early reviews are generally positive. The problem for Samsung, however, is that its last phone was such a disaster that winning back customers put off by the defective (explosive) product. Hearing airline attendants demanding that any Samsung phone be turned off for the duration of the flight was not the sort of marketing message any company would appreciate.

The Verge has an interesting article stating that Samsung’s “biggest challenge now is Google software, not Apple hardware” – arguing that it will find Google to be more of a threat than Apple.

But another article on The Verge grabbed my attention, and in the long run, is far more important.

The Verge, T.C. Sottek:

The 265 members of Congress who sold you out to ISPs, and how much it cost to buy them
They betrayed you for chump change
Republicans in Congress just voted to reverse a landmark FCC privacy rule that opens the door for ISPs to sell customer data. Lawmakers provided no credible reason for this being in the interest of Americans, except for vague platitudes about “consumer choice” and “free markets,” as if consumers at the mercy of their local internet monopoly are craving to have their web history quietly sold to marketers and any other third party willing to pay.

The only people who seem to want this are the people who are going to make lots of money from it. (Hint: they work for companies like Comcast, Verizon, and AT&T.) Incidentally, these people and their companies routinely give lots of money to members of Congress.

So here is a list of the lawmakers who voted to betray you, and how much money they received from the telecom industry in their most recent election cycle…

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