Author Archives: Tristan Blaine

You are 6 Minutes Away from Understanding the 6 California Ballot Propositions for Nov 4 Election

California bear flag

The words “ballot proposition” may not sound very fun or sexy, but it’s actually an awesome opportunity for each of us to play lawmaker for a day. Unfortunately it’s also an opportunity for this guy to play lawmaker: At least you can make sure to cancel out his votes. Here’s what you need to know to be an informed voter and not

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Report Shows Up to 72% of Airbnbs in NYC are Illegal; Govt to Step up Enforcement

Bnb bed and breakfast sign

A report released yesterday reveals that up to 72% of Airbnb listings in New York City violate state and/or city laws which prohibit renting out an apartment for less than 30 days.1New York state Multiple Dwellings Law and New York City Administrative Code 27-2004(a)(8) both prohibit most apartment buildings from being rented out for a period of less than 30 days. See also NY Attorney General Airbnb Report,

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Update #2 on Texas Abortion Clinics – They Can Stay Open For Now

Positive pregnancy test

We have been following the story on the 13 Texas abortion clinics that were forced to close a couple weeks ago due to a stringent law Texas passed in 2013, leaving only 8 operating in the state. Well yesterday the Supreme Court said those clinics can now remain open – that is, until the case makes its way through more legal process (see below).

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Open signup for Obamacare coming November 15

Healthcare is your right AND responsibility. In case you haven’t heard by now, you have the right to purchase “affordable” (affordability may vary!) health insurance, regardless of whether you have a preexisting medical condition. Not only that, but you are required to have health insurance, otherwise you could be fined at least $325. If you didn’t have healthcare insurance coverage this year (which may mean you

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Should hacking of Jennifer Lawrence’s nude photos be considered a “sex crime”?

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: You have the right to protection against hacking, which includes unauthorized access of your computer, other devices, or cloud based data. The people who hacked and posted JLaw’s nude photos did all kinds of wrong, both morally and legally. First, it seems pretty clear that by hacking into her iCloud account, they violated the above described federal

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To resolve lawsuit over false advertising, Redbull to give cash or free drinks to customers

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: If you bought a Red Bull drink in the last 10 years, you are entitled to either $10 cash or $15 in free drinks.1 More refunds! Yesterday we told you about the government’s takedown of AT&T for shady business practices, forcing that company to give refunds to many of its customers. Now Red Bull is agreeing to settle

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Marriage equality now a reality for majority of Americans and 30 states (with 2 more in limbo)

Same sex wedding

As a result of Monday’s Supreme Court decision NOT to take up the issue of same-sex marriage (for now), same-sex marriage is now legal in 30 states, which includes roughly 165 million people, over half the U.S. population. The decision affected 11 states (Utah, Oklahoma, Virginia, Wisconsin, Indiana, Colorado, Wyoming, Kansas, West Virginia, North Carolina and South Carolina), so added to the previous 19 states (and DC) that have

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AT&T to pay $80M in refunds to cell phone customers for unauthorized charges

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: Cell phone companies may not add charges to your bill from outside companies without your clear consent, must clearly identify these charges as from outside companies, and must give you the option to block the charges.* This one may seem pretty obvious, but many companies are apparently just now getting the memo about it, in the form of a bill

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Judge says Ferguson police can’t require protesters to keep it moving

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: You have the right to peacefully gather with others on public sidewalks, and police may not unreasonably restrict this right.* What’s the news? Police apparently love telling people to keep it moving, claiming that it helps maintain order. Or perhaps it’s secretly part of Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move” campaign? In any case, police might not be able to

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FCC says hotels may not jam your personal Wi-Fi hotspot

YOUR RIGHT OF THE DAY: Companies or individuals may not block or interfere with your personal Wi-Fi hotspot.* What’s the news on this right? Hotel chain Marriott International has agreed to pay the government a penalty of $600,000 for “jamming” guests’ personal Wi-Fi hotspots. What law did Marriott violate and how? The Communications Act contains a very broad prohibition on anyone blocking any “radio

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