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Say What? Florida Man Calls Police On Egyptian Comic, Claims Joke Made Him “Uncomfortable”

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After hearing a joke that made light of negative stereotypes of Muslims, a Florida man was triggered enough to call the police. Alleging the joke made him “uncomfortable”, the caller misidentified standup comedian Ahmed Ahmed as Middle Eastern and stated his joke supported terrorism.

Last Saturday during his set at the Off The Hook Comedy Club in Naples, Florida, Egyptian comic Ahmed Ahmed told a joke that apparently went over one attendee’s head. Asking the audience to “clap if you’re from the Middle East”, Ahmed scoped the audience for cheers. He responded, “All right. We got a handful of us in here, nice. But, hey, it only takes one of us… to tell a joke.” After hearing the bit, which is regularly part of Ahmed’s sets, the attendee claimed, “My wife and I looked at each other and we felt very uncomfortable.”

Stating he only went to the show because he’d received free tickets, the man called authorities at the Collier County Sheriff’s Department. Claiming Ahmed Ahmed was a man of Middle Eastern descent who was possibly organizing people to commit acts of terrorism, the caller yelled out mid-set that “the paddy wagon is going to be outside to get all of you!” However, the sheriff’s department didn’t show up until Sunday and found no reason for concern.

Since audio of the call was released by the sheriff’s department, Ahmed Ahmed has called it “a blessing in disguise.” Brien Spina, the owner of the comedy club where Ahmed has been booked for more than a decade, has praised the comic’s ability and stated “For me, it was a great joke. I stand behind him.” Ahmed spoke with NBC who asked what he would say to the backwards audience member. Ahmed replied, “I want to say, ‘Thank you, to him. He got more publicity for me in that one phone call than ever.”

You can listen to the joke and phone call here.

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Hold up! If You Use FaceApp, Russians Own Your Pics

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FaceApp users have signed up for more than they initially thought! After digging into the policy of the app, critics have found that users are agreeing to share their content and personal information with businesses, along with opening themselves up for other security concerns.

Growing in popularity, the FaceApp, which ages users by 50 years, is facing scrutiny for their lax security precautions. Parties that have chosen to read the user agreement have discovered the app “cannot ensure the security of any info you transmit.” In addition to the concerns of what FaceApp could be capturing, the policy also states they cannot “guarantee that information on the service may not be accessed, disclosed, altered or destroyed.” Most unsettling is that businesses that are legally a part of the same group of companies have access to your information. And since those entities are Russian owned, users have given access to all those corporations.

According to ABC News chief business correspondent Rebecca Jarvis, the 80 million FaceApp users are providing access to their contacts and all their pictures. In a statement, Jarvis said, “Once you allow that you are giving away everything.” She continued, “That’s how they’re paying for it, free isn’t actually free, they’re giving away your information.”

The FaceApp was developed in St. Petersburg, Russia. Despite the app’s popularity, the privacy policy has remained untouched since 2017. As far as what risks current users are facing, Security expert Ariel Hochstadt says by giving someone access to your phone you risk being “secretly recorded”. This leaves people open to targeting, especially if they are members of prosecuted communities, such as “a young gay person.”

The Russian government has been known to exploit the personal information of many through the use of a large database created through Facebook. According to Hochstadt, “The data they have on that person is both private and accurate to the name, city, and other details found on Facebook.” She continued, “With so many breaches, they can get information and hack cameras that are out there, and be able to create a database of people all over the world, with information these people didn’t imagine is collected on them.” Terrifying!

If you’re a current user of FaceApp, will you be deleting the app? Knowing how dangerous Facebook is and what data is collected from the platform, will you continue to use it?

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R Kelly Slapped With Federal Charges, Press Conference Interrupted by Savage Family

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Arrested Thursday on a 13-count indictment, R Kelly has been brought up on federal charges. For his sexual abuses against women and minors, Kelly is facing 13 new charges including child pornography and enticing a minor. But the singer’s woes don’t end there. According to a five-count indictment from the Eastern District of New York, he is also facing racketeering charges.

While R Kelly was out walking his dog, agents of Homeland Security and New York Police Department detectives apprehended him. On the grounds of two separate indictments, officers began conducting a search of his Trump Tower residence in Chicago. As of now, R Kelly is being held at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Illinois and is expected to appear in court later today.

“Where is my daughter?!”

R Kelly’s publicist, Darrell Johnson, held a press conference today in Atlanta where he discussed the events of the arrest, but he was interrupted by Joycelyn Savage’s family. Timothy Savage along with his wife, two daughters, and publicist Dontaye Carter arrived in Atlanta Friday morning after an unsuccessful wellness check in Chicago. The family says they arranged a visit to Kelly’s Trump Tower residence with the Chicago PD. Unfortunately, the Savages were unable to contact their daughter because the residence had been vacated. The Savages hoped to see their daughter for the first time since December 2016 and hear her voice for the first time since the phone call that followed the explosive interviews from two months ago.

Demanding to know the whereabouts of Joycelyn, the Savages thought their best course of action was to attack the press conference after hearing of Kelly’s arrest. However, Darrell Johnson denies having any knowledge of where Azriel Clary or Joycelyn Savage are. Johnson stated he had only arrived after spending time in New York and was not in Chicago. But Timothy Savage said they were tipped off that the girls were in Atlanta. Addressing previous attempts to reach an agreement, Johnson said he tried negotiating with the Savages but the talks fell through. Since then, there have been no updates provided to her family, which prompted the wellness check.

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Racist Threats and Lapse In Support Cause AfroFuturist Festival to Change Ticket Prices

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An Afrofuturist festival set in Detroit has received immense backlash following the discovery that Non POC patrons were expected to pay higher ticket prices for entry. Organizers at Afrofuture Youth say they’ve been bombarded with threats and suffered a loss of support. Comments on their Instagram and statements from artists set to perform influenced a change in their ticketing model.

Based in Detroit, Afrofuture Youth is an initiative founded on the support of Black lives through Afrofuturism via art, tech, media, and healing. Asserting their “resistance stems from creation,” festival organizers designed a tiered ticket model to prevent the exclusion of marginalized groups. To balance the scales and prevent “those with cultural, monetary, and class privileges” from co-opting the event, AFY listed ticket prices on Eventbrite that favored the audience for which their content is designed.

For Us, By Us

As more Black and Brown people are being excluded from events intended for their communities due to aggressive gentrification, AFY’s decision was well received by many within the POC audience. Those who have grown tired of cultural appropriation expressed their support for the initial ticket model on Twitter. Mimicking the social experiment of Saartj, a pop-up food stall in New Orleans, the pricing model was meant to resolve racial wealth disparity. However, once artists caught wind of the news, they pulled their performance. Once Eventbrite found out about the ten dollar difference in price, they threatened to unpublish the event from the site.

Rapper Tiny Jag, who planned to perform music from her project “Polly”, pulled out of the engagement stating her views didn’t align with AFY’s. A biracial woman, Tiny Jag could not reconcile the ticket price model because the project she intended to perform is named after her white grandmother. Confused by the decision, Tiny Jag wondered “How do you want me to come to a performance and perform these songs off a mixtape that is titled after this white woman that you would have charged double to get in here?” The rapper says she was notified by a Non POC friend and announced her decision to pull out July 2nd.

Comply or Else

In a statement released to CNN, Eventbrite said “events that require attendees to pay different prices based on their protected characteristics such as race or ethnicity” are not permitted. Event coordinators at AFY were then notified that if they hadn’t changed their price model on their own accord, the event would be unpublished from the site. July 7th, Afrofuture Youth made an announcement on Twitter explaining their decision to alter the pricing. Citing threats received by White supremacists, AFY changed to a $20 general admission fee and suggested donation from Non POC.

Do you agree with their decision to alter ticket prices? Did you agree with their initial concept?

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