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Archive for the ‘Social Media’ Category

New App Designed to Combat Bullying

March 27th, 2014 at 7:00 am

combat online bullying, CombatHate App, cyberbullying, Simon Wiesenthal Center, empower adolescents, bullying, online bullying, combat bullying The issue of bullying and cyberbullying has increasingly become a hot topic of discussion among members of the public. And while technology has become so ingrained in our everyday lives, it also plays a huge part in making young people the victims of bullying. However, as reported recently by the Chicago Tribune, technology is now being employed to combat bullying as well.

CombatHate App

Chicago officials recently encouraged the use of a new app that could be used to combat online bullying. The app is called CombatHate, and is available for teens to install on their cell phones. It allows the user to take photos or write descriptions of hate speech they find online and send the information anonymously to the Simon Wiesenthal Center, which is an international Jewish human rights organization. The Center then takes the lead in reporting any information to law enforcement that could be the basis of an online crime. The app also enables patterns of hate that appear online to be tracked, whether the actions rise to the criminal level or not.

The Center’s Associate Dean praised the app, saying it was a way to empower adolescents who are exposed to this type of behavior online every day. Other proponents say the app is especially effective because it works with teens within the world of technology as a way to address the problem of online bullying. It is a means of hope for victims and witnesses to hate crimes.

CombatHate in Chicago

Although the app was introduced in other cities in the past, a news conference was held in Chicago specifically to push its use within the city. This is likely due in part to the use of another app, Yik Yak, which allows teenagers to anonymously post statements to other nearby users of the app. Chicago-area school leaders and educators warned of the use of the app, and said that some students have used it to threaten others. This caused many schools to block the app on their networks and schools also encouraged parents to uninstall the app from their child’s mobile device.

Other Features

CombatHate does more than just curb the incidence of cyberbullying. The app offers tips to victims on how to deal with bullying and get help, and also features recent examples of hate speech and other incidents that users can see within the app. It lists online sites and games which encourage hate, and suggests users avoid them. In addition, the app only encourages teens to use it in serious cases. Users are instructed to upload information only if they believe the incident rises to level of hate speech or terrorism.

Bullying is a serious issue faced by teens today. While not all bullying rises to the level of criminal behavior, it is important to understand your rights if you are accused of such conduct. If you or someone you know has been charged with an incident involving bullying, you should consult with an attorney in the Chicago area who is experienced in juvenile matters. Contact an Illinois juvenile crime attorney today and schedule a consultation to discuss your rights.


New Legislation Pending for Driving with Google Glass

December 26th, 2013 at 8:29 am

drivingGoogle Glass is being tested by a select number of people in anticipation of a roll out in 2014.  The concept of device is that it is a smartphone display that is worn on your face and looks like a pair of glasses.  It allows you to take pictures, view social media, make phone calls and even get directions by the sound of your voice.  While it is not for sale to the general public, legislators in Delaware, New Jersey and West Virginia have introduced legislation that seeks to ban driving while wearing Google Glass frames.

Lawmakers in Springfield are also interested in stopping distracted driving on the streets of Illinois.  Certain laws are already in place to accomplish this gial.  Currently, it is illegal to text while operating a vehicle.  Another law which will be effective in 2014 will outlaw the use of any handheld device behind the wheel.

Illinois State Senator Ira Silverstein, a Democratic representative from Chicago, recently filed a new bill that extends the law banning handheld devices.  Silverstein said that using these new Google Glass is “another way people will be distracted.  People’s attention to the road should not be interrupted.”

Detractors of this legislation point to the possible use of Google Glass which gives you turn by turn directions similar to a GPS device.  Even if your eye would drift to the small screen on your face, it is no different than checking other instruments in your car.

But the debate centers on the capabilities of Google Glass which has the ability to cause distractions to drivers with Facebook or YouTube videos.  The author of a similar bill in West Virginia, state Delegate Gary Howell, said that “it is incredible technology, but it doesn’t belong on the road.  There’s no way law enforcement officers can tell whether you’re watching a cat video or using your GPS system.”

If you have been accused of committing a crime behind the wheel, then it is important to seek legal representation.  Receiving too many moving violations can even result in the suspension of your license.  Contact an experienced criminal defense attorney in Rolling Meadows who can protect your rights.

Toll Way tweets holiday traffic

December 27th, 2012 at 5:09 am

Toll Way tweetsWith the increased use of social media and smart phones, the Illinois Toll Way has decided to create a Twitter account. The toll way tweets to provide drivers with information for each of the four toll ways: the Tri-State, Jane Adams Memorial, Reagan Memorial, and Veterans Memorial toll ways.

Travelers now have to option to follow each of the toll ways on Twitter and can receive real-time roadway incident information, according to the Illinois Toll Way.

The Illinois Toll Way Executive Director Kristi Lafleur shared in a news release, “Toll Way Trip Tweets will help us connect to our customers in a new way and, hopefully, give them the information they need to be able to plan their trips based on what’s happening on the road.”

The tweets include updates such as information on roadway conditions, accident reports as they happen, and updates on congestion, according to the toll way.

Details in the tweets may include real-time information about the type of incident, the location based on the nearest crossroad and milepost and the subsequent impact on traffic, such as lane closures, said the Illinois Toll Way. It was reported that as many as three messages may be sent using Twitter for each incident. The final tweet will be the conclusion and clearing of the incident from the roadway.

Toll Way Trip Tweets are issued automatically from the agency’s Traffic Operations Center, Traffic and Incident Management System, which is staffed from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m.

To follow Toll Way Trip Tweets, you can visit the Too Way’s website and click the Toll Way Trip Tweets “Follow Us” button. Or, visit to set up an account, and then follow: TollwayTrip90, TollwayTrip94/294, TollwayTrip88, and TollwayTrip355

Even with many extra precautions being taken this season to keep drivers safe, there will still be accidents. If you find yourself at fault of a traffic violation this season, contact a traffic law attorney for help today. The Law Offices of Christopher M. Cosley can help you today.


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