Thursday, December 10, 2015

Last Call For Naming The Problem

There's reams of evidence that "black sounding names" are discriminated against, in job hunting, in the classroom, by local government officials and in getting bank loans. No surprise then that the internet economy of stuff is the same goddamn way.

The lack of anonymity on Airbnb may lead to persistent racial discrimination, a working paper from Harvard Business School found. Renters with names that sounded African American had a harder time booking reservations on the site than those who had white-sounding names, according to the study. 
Researchers set up 6,400 fake profiles of Airbnb guests and assigned them stereotypically white or black names, based on Massachusetts birth certificate data from the 1970s. None of the guest profiles had identifying pictures. They used the accounts to request bookings with hosts in five cities: Baltimore, Dallas, Los Angeles, St. Louis, and Washington, D.C. Airbnb hosts decide whom they want to rent to; requests from white guests got “yes” responses 50 percent of the time, vs. 42 percent for black applicants. The researchers controlled for a variety of factors, such as the host’s gender and ratings, and the “race effect,” as the paper described it, persisted
“Life is tough if you’re a black guest on Airbnb,” said Ben Edelman, an associate professor at HBS and one of the study’s authors. “Particularly when you compare it to the baseline of the way things used to be. If you’re a black guest, you just make a reservation at the Marriott.”

For its part, Airbnb says it doesn’t support discrimination. “Airbnb is one of the most open, trusted, diverse, transparent communities in the world,” a spokesperson said in a statement sent to Bloomberg. “We respond quickly to any concerns raised by hosts or guests, and we have a zero-tolerance policy for discrimination on our platform.” 
The paper comes from the same researchers who in 2014 discovered racial discrimination against hosts. That study found nonblack renters could charge 12 percent more, on average, holding everything else constant. The differential in the new study is less stark, but still statistically significant, Edelman said. “Anything more than zero is something we should aspire to fix,” he said.

And I'm willing to bet that Pedro and Lourdes, or hey, Sayeed and Fatima?  Same problem, varying degrees.  Just another microaggression in a country full of them, where the default is white, and white is good.  The internet economy didn't fix racism, it just made it more efficient, and you don't even have to leave your house for it anymore.

America, baby.

That Would Explain A Few Things

In talking about changing median incomes, Five Thirty Eight's Ben Casselman gives us a Pew Research chart that goes a long way towards explaining the "take back our country" folks on the right:


Seems pretty clear to me why younger white folks without four-year college degrees (who have seen their median incomes drop by 15-20% from where their parents were at that age) are increasingly drawn to taking the country back 50 years, huh.

So yeah, if you're a thirtyish white guy without a bachelor's degree, you're in much worse financial shape than your parents were 20-25 years ago at that age and especially compared to your grandparents 45-50 years ago.

If you're black however, even as rough as things are now, they're still better than they were in the 70s.

This explains a lot about the GOP.

Speculation Nation

It's too early to tell what the motive for Colorado Springs shooter Robert Dear really was, I mean it's not like the guy is going to tell the world he's guilty and that he shot up the Planned Parenthood clinic there because of the really reprehensible series of debunked videos claiming the organization sold dead babies for profit.

Robert L. Dear Jr. was charged with 179 counts on Wednesday, including first-degree murder, in connection with the deadly shooting rampage last month at a Planned Parenthood clinic. 
Bearded, unkempt and cuffed at the legs and arms, Mr. Dear frequently disrupted the proceedings in state court here, shouting out declarations of anger and defiance. 
“I’m guilty. There’s no trial. I’m a warrior for the babies,” he yelled at one point. “Let it all come out. The truth!” he yelled at another. 
As Judge Gilbert A. Martinez discussed a pretrial publicity order, Mr. Dear shouted: “Could you add the babies that were supposed to be aborted that day? Could you add that to the list?” 
It was the first in-person appearance in court for Mr. Dear since his arrest on Nov. 27 after the attack on the clinic, which left three people dead and nine wounded. He was arrested by the police after a tense, hourslong, nationally televised standoff.

No, we may never know the motive behind this.  Meanwhile, back to your regularly scheduled dose of daily fearmongering against Muslims, black people, Latinos, LGBTQ people, and anybody else who isn't a real "Murican.


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