Tag Archives | mobile phones

Hold The Phone, Central! Cellphone Radiation Can Cause Cancer

Don’t say we didn’t warn you (via the documentary Mobilize), but cellphone radiation can (and probably does) cause cancer reports the New York Daily News:

The scientists were right — your cell phone can give you cancer.

There have long been whispers of a cancer connection from your cell — and a new study backs up the claims.

Cellphone.DupontCircle.WDC.2oct05

“These data are a clear sign of the real risks this kind of radiation poses for human health,” study author Igor Yakymenko said.

Yakymenko’s meta-study — basically a study of hundreds of other studies — reveals many findings of previous researchers into how radiofrequency from your phone can damage DNA.

That damage can add up over time and cause a variety of health problems, like cancer, headaches, fatigue and even skin problems.

For example, using your phone for just 20 minutes a day for five years increased the risk of one type of brain tumor threefold, and using the phone an hour a day for four years upped the risk of some tumors three to five times, Yakymenko said…

[continues at the Daily News]

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Cellphone Ordinance Puts Berkeley at Forefront of Radiation Debate

If you’ve seen the disinformation documentary Mobilize you’ll know that Berkeley, California, is at the forefront of the cellphone radiation debate. The New York Times reports on the new city ordinance requiring retailers to warn purchasers of cellphones about the health hazards of radiation from the phones:

BERKELEY, Calif. — Leave it to Berkeley: This city, which has led the nation in passing all manner of laws favored by the left, has done it again. This time, the city passed a measure — not actually backed by science — requiring cellphone stores to warn customers that the products could be hazardous to their health, presumably by emitting dangerous levels of cancer-causing radiation.

Brain Cell Phone Radiation Warning

Under the so-called Right to Know ordinance, passed unanimously in May by the Berkeley City Council, retailers are supposed to notify customers, starting in August, that “you may exceed the federal guidelines for exposure” to radio frequency radiation by carrying a cellphone in a pants or shirt pocket, or tucked into a bra.

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OFF Pocket Takes Your Phone Off the Grid (Sorry NSA)

off pocketI imagine every disinfonaut will be wanting one of these… Josh Dzieza reports on the OFF Pocket for Daily Beast:

Haute couture usually makes you stand out, but Adam Harvey and Johanna Bloomfield imagine a future where it can help you hide.

The newest item designed by Harvey, an artist with a background in mechanical engineering, and Bloomfield, a fashion designer, is called OFF Pocket, a metallic-fiber pouch designed to block all wireless signals to your phone. Bloomfield calls it a “privacy accessory.” For the next month, it will sit alongside other examples of counter surveillance chic from Harvey’s company, PRVCM, in a “privacy gift shop” at New York’s New Museum.

Harvey and Bloomfield’s first collaborative project, Stealth Wear, a line of futuristic looking streetwear that shields the wearer from thermal imaging cameras, debuted this January at the fashion boutique Primitive London. Stealth Wear was more of a “provocation” than a consumer fashion line, Harvey says, designed to make people aware of how invasive thermal imaging could be, and the sort of counter-measures that would be required to block it.

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Cellphone Use Linked To Selfish Behavior

Photo: Ed Poor (CC)

Photo: Ed Poor (CC)

From ScienceDaily:

Though cellphones are usually considered devices that connect people, they may make users less socially minded, finds a recent study from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.

Marketing professors Anastasiya Pocheptsova and Rosellina Ferraro, with graduate student, Ajay T. Abraham, conducted a series of experiments on test groups of cellphone users. The findings appear in their working paper, “The Effect of Mobile Phone Use on Prosocial Behavior.”

Prosocial behavior, as defined in the study, is action intended to benefit another person or society as a whole.

The researchers found that after a short period of cellphone use the subjects were less inclined to volunteer for a community service activity when asked, compared to the control-group counterparts. The cell phone users were also less persistent in solving word problems — even though they knew their answers would translate to a monetary donation to charity.

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Carrier IQ: The Rootkit Tracking Everything You Do On Your Phone

carrierIf you use an Android or Blackberry phone, likely it houses a piece of hidden software which logs the content of your text messages, web searches, and other activities, and transmits the information back to company headquarters. Lifehacker reports on the unfolding Carrier IQ scandal:

Android developer Trevor Eckhart last week released information and started an uproar about a widespread rootkit, called Carrier IQ, that’s capable of logging everything you do and comes preinstalled on a ton of smartphones-including various Androids, Nokia phones, and BlackBerrys.

Last week, 25-year old Eckhart discovered a hidden application on some mobile phones that had the ability to log anything and everything on your device—from location to web searches to the content of your text messages. The program is called Carrier IQ, and unlike the

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The World’s First Mobile Phone / Music Player — In 1922

From the vault of British Pathe, a 1922 newsreel on the portable calling and music device which was that year's hot accessory for the savvy urban woman on the street. The brave new technological advances of the past few years are maybe not as novel as one might believe, and I think these could be a popular niche item if sold today, even:
World's First Mobile Phone (1922). Found by a researcher in the Pathe vaults, this clip from 1922 shows that 90 years ago, mobile phone technology and music on the move was not only being thought of but being trialled.
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World Health Org Study Says Mobile Phones ‘Possibly Carcinogenic’

Last week I was at the BookExpo trade show and a couple of dubious characters manning an outlying booth tried to sell me an ugly looking sticky thing to place on my iPhone and supposedly cut down harmful radiation. They measured the radiation coming from the iPhone on some sort of scanner and of course the needle jumped off the scale. But their device, whatever it was, made my iPhone ugly so I didn't buy it. I might have to track them down in the wake of what seems like a convincing study that the radiation from cell phones really is hazardous for humans. Labeling them as “possibly carcinogenic,’’ a panel of 31 WHO scientists deems them to be in the same category of harm as certain dry cleaning chemicals and pesticides.
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Mobile Phones Shown To Affect Human Brain

Well now we know for sure that holding a mobile phone next to your head does something to you -- although it's not entirely clear if the radiation is good, bad or indifferent (but I know which one I'd place money on). Shirley Wang reports on a new study for the Wall Street Journal:
Cellphone use appears to increase brain activity in regions close to where the phone antenna is held against the head, according to a new study, but researchers said the implications for health are still unknown. The study is the first to demonstrate that radiation from the devices has a direct impact on some brain cells, and is likely to fuel a long-running debate over the safety of cellular phones...
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How Rupert Murdoch’s Sleazy Journalists Hacked British Royals’ Mobile Phones

news of the worldThe New York Times declares open season on a favorite liberal media pastime: bashing Rupert Murdoch and his “news” empire with this lengthy Magazine article on how the News of the World, an unabashedly lowbrow UK tabloid, hacked the mobile phones of Princes William and Harry and many other celebrities, possibly with some covert assistance from the police:

In November 2005, three senior aides to Britain’s royal family noticed odd things happening on their mobile phones. Messages they had never listened to were somehow appearing in their mailboxes as if heard and saved. Equally peculiar were stories that began appearing about Prince William in one of the country’s biggest tabloids, News of the World.

The stories were banal enough (Prince William pulled a tendon in his knee, one revealed). But the royal aides were puzzled as to how News of the World had gotten the information, which was known among only a small, discreet circle.

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Can Cellphones Become Credit Cards?

New iPhone?AT&T and Verizon are testing a new feature designed to “supplant more than 1 billion plastic cards in American wallets” – by letting people make traditional credit card purchases using their cellphones!

It seems like a glimpse of the future, but it’s already in place in Japan, Turkey and the U.K., with smart phones simply being waved over a reader to complete in-store purchases. “This is definitely a game-changer,” an analyst told Bloomberg news, saying that already cellphone carriers are “the biggest recurring billers in every market. They are experts at processing payments.” And the concept is already being cheered on by retailers. “We have long argued that real competition is missing from today’s payments market,” one industry spokesperson added.

Plus, the cellphone carriers are attacking when credit card companies are already being reviled for their dishonest disclosures on penalty fees. (Today Forbes cited a new study which shows that some credit cards “no longer provide full disclosure of the terms of the penalty rate, or fail to correctly follow disclosure requirements required by the new Federal Reserve rules.”) Consumers are already experiencing raised hopes that federal stimulus cash can somehow eliminate credit card debt.… Read the rest

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