DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – 2019/02/13

DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – February 13, 2019


— real reason for Seattle Starbucks lawsuit

DeafDigest mentioned that deaf baristas in Seattle
filed a discrimination lawsuit against Starbucks.
It has happened too often; the boss that hired the
deaf liked their work performance and gave them
great employee reviews. This boss left; a new boss,
who apparently didn’t like the deaf, started
discriminating against them!


— a section of the law no one talks about

Many deaf people know what is ADA; they also know
what is Section 504. But how many deaf people know
about Section 1557? It is part of the Affordable
Care Act, which also does not allow discrimination
in federally-funded health care programs. If a
deaf person hires an attorney, just make sure
that attorney knows what Section 1557 is all about!


— sign-language museum tours do not help non-signing deaf

There are always stories of museems hiring sign language
tour guides to help the deaf tourists. Nothing has been
ever mentioned about deaf tourists that do not know
sign language. Not every deaf person knows sign



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U.S. Senators raise alarm over Foreign VPNs places negative spotlight on Kaspersky and Anchorfree VPN Partnership

In a bi-partisan effort by a pair of United States Senators, Marco Rubio (R- Florida) and Ron Wyden (D – Oregon) have drafted a letter imploring that the director of the Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency begin an investigation into the use of foreign operated VPN services by federal employees. 

The sense of urgency is prompted by a fear that national security could be jeopardized by unvetted VPN services potentially acting as outlets of foreign surveillance upon unsuspecting employees of the United States government.  

The threat of foreign-based security software first came onto the U.S government’s radar in the fall of 2017, when the Russian owned and operated antivirus firm Kaspersky Lab was ordered to be removed from all U.S government computers by Homeland Security. Israeli intelligence found evidence of the software being used by the Russian government to probe federal systems in search of American intelligence secrets. Subsequent testimony by officials from both the FBI and CIA about the trustworthiness of Kaspersky products helped lead to an outright ban of Kaspersky Lab software from all U.S government networks thanks to a formal vote by the United States Senate. 

As a result, the British and Dutch governments followed suit with the Americans and banned Kaspersky from their government networks, and soon after were followed by the entire European Union. Retail-giant Best Buy even pulled all Kaspersky products from their shelves in response to their actions. 

Kaspersky Lab was initially founded back in 1997 by Eugene V. Kaspersky, a prominent Russian software developer whose background as a student at a KGB operated high school in the former Soviet Union and later as a software writer for the Red Army led to some raised eyebrows in the intelligence community. 

All of which in the new push to vet the credibility of foreign-based VPN services, has placed the Kaspersky relationship with AnchorFree’s Hotspot Shield in a negative light. The partnership between the two was initially public but has since been downplayed, with Hotspot Shield pulling language about their partnership away from the privacy/ FAQ page on their website. 

But by Eugene V. Kaspersky’s own social media boasting, it’s clear that he deems the Hotspot Shield VPN to be one and the same with his company’s own Kaspersky Secure Connection.

The user privacy problems associated with Hotspot Shield were well documented before their Kaspersky connection threatened to undermine the remaining credibility they had enjoyed as a trustworthy VPN. The renowned internet privacy watchdog Center for Democracy & Technology (CDT) filed a 14-page report back in 2017 that urged the Federal Trade Commision (FTC) to investigate the company on account of deceptive practices.

In response, AnchorFree CEO David Gorodyansky disputed the CDT claims as unfounded. “We have never given or sold any user data, and our perspective on user data is not to store any data related to user IP addresses or Personally Identifiable Information.” The problem being that this language didn’t align with the lofty promises his company’s privacy page made at the time he went on the record with this quote.

David Gorodyansky did some delicate backtracking when confronted by the misalignment between his company’s website language and his own statement, “We are in the process of updating our user policy to reflect the reality around how our systems work, and the reality is that many of the items are not actually accurate”.

These revelations are not necessarily unique grievances to Hotspot Shield; but are indicative of a lack of transparency with consumers about the specific policies that their company is practicing when it comes to data logging and sharing. If the VPN industry would endeavor to be more collectively transparent and to permit itself to be openly audited for the sake of public scrutiny, many of these embarrassing miscues or bad optics could be avoided. And VPN companies would not feel complacent about not being open and candid about their logging practices, it would force VPN companies to be in alignment with all of their marketing claims in order to remain in good standing amongst their competition and with consumers.

Sloppy practices aside, the dubious Russian ties between AnchorFree and Kaspersky are cause for great pause when it comes to assessing the reliability and trustworthiness of a VPN such as Hotspot Shield. Between Eugene V. Kaspersky’s KGB influenced education and background as a Soviet military operative alongside AnchorFree’s Soviet born CEO, the natural rapport between the two entrepreneurs goes deeper than an average business partnership. And with one company banned from several western government networks and the other being hounded by privacy watchdogs for deceptive practices, it seems as though it is a partnership between two companies comfortable with duplicitous reputations.

And reputations (preferably ones backed by verified audits) are the only thing the average consumer has to go by when it comes to protecting themselves from untrustworthy VPN providers, foreign or domestic. All thing considered, with blatantly suspicious outfits such as those run by Kaspersky and Gorodyansky becoming commonplace, Senator Rubio and Senator Wyden were well-advised when they asked the head of federal cybersecurity to investigate the potential impact of unvetted foreign VPN services upon the security of the United States government.


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DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – 2019/02/12

DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – February 12, 2019

— Starbucks good or bad to deaf

Starbucks opened all-signing store near
Gallaudet in Washington, DC. Yet, there
was an ugly lawsuit years back about
Starbucks discriminating against the
deaf in New York. And now just this –
that Starbucks is accused of discriminating
against deaf baristas in Seattle, a city
which takes its coffee seriously. So,
Starbucks good to us or bad to us?
DeafDigest editor, by the way, loves his
Starbucks coffee.


— Super Bowl or Mannix TV program

Mannix was a popular detective TV sitcom during
the sixties and seventies. Yes, it was not captioned.
But anyway, Sanford Diamond, a deaf actor, took part
in one episode, but what a joke it was. He only
appeared on that episode for just one second. If
one blinked his eye, he would miss that deaf actor.
It is the same thing with the Super Bowl. The deaf
signer of the National Anthem was shown on the TV
for – just one second! So, Mannix or 2019 Super Bowl?


— sign language in hearing film

“Wonder” is said to be the first movie to be interpreted
in sign language. It is a fourth option to open captions,
the closed captions via devices and the special audio
assistance for hard of hearing. The credit for this
sign language innovation belongs to Nyle DiMarco, who
pushed for it.



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How To Get Started With The Latest Kodi Version

If you have been on the latest version of Kodi, then this article bear glad tidings. The latest Kodi version Leia 18 is finally out with a stable release. While before this, version 16 Jarvis and 17.6 Krypton had great runs but as with everything, the show must go on.

Since add-ons and file hosts are automatically updating dependencies, the old version is failing to support them. So if you have been meaning to update to the latest version, here’s how you can do it.

Factors To Consider When Updating To Latest Kodi Version

In order for the best experience when updating to latest Kodi version, it is better to adhere to these guidelines.

  1. Switch back to the Confluence skin which is the default for Jarvis or Estuary, and default for Krypton. It is safer that way because if a particular skin is not supported by the latest version, you’ll likely get a black screen and will have to carry out a fresh installation of the software.
  2. Refrain from installing the same build on Kodi 18 as you have on Kodi 17 or the version prior to that, because similar to skins, builds aren’t backward compatible either.
  3. Also, try backing up Kodi before you proceed with the update, in case something goes awry.
  4. Kodi Leia does not support Android 4.4 so if you have the said version, you cannot update to version 18.

Below is a list of devices that can be updated to the latest Kodi Version.

Update To The Latest Kodi Version On Android

Here’s how you can update to the latest version of Kodi on your Android devices:

  1. On the main menu of your Android, click and access Google Play Store
  2. Search Kodi by typing in the search bar
  3. Choose Kodi. The latest Kodi software will be displayed therein with the version description.
  4. Click to install it. Wait for the installation to complete.

There you go! You have the Kodi Leia installed on your Android device.

Update To The Latest Kodi Version On Windows And Mac

Here’s how you can update Kodi:

  1. Visit the official Kodi website
  2. In the upper right corner, choose Download
  3. Select your desired operating system; Windows, Mac or Linux
  4. In the following window, under the Recommended tab choose Installer for the said operating system
  5. Once the installer has downloaded. Launch the installer to install Kodi version 18.

You’re welcome.

Update To The Latest Kodi Version On Amazon Fire Stick

You can get started in the following steps:

  1. On your Fire Stick, go to Settings> System> Developer Options
  2. Make sure to turn on apps from Unknown Sources
  3. Head back to the main menu and look for ES File Explorer
  4. If not already installed, download and install it on your device
  5. After launching ES File Explorer, choose Favorites
  6. Select Add
  7. In the field which says “path source” type in
  8. Name it “Kodi”
  9. Scroll down on the left, choose Kodi and you will be taken to the Kodi download page
  10. Since Fire Stick uses Android OS, in the next step choose Android from the list
  11. On the page go to the Recommended tab and click on ARMV7A (32 bit) button to begin downloading and installing software.

You have successfully installed the latest version on your Amazon Fire Stick.

Update To The Latest Kodi Version On Apple TV, iPhone, And iPad

In order to update Kodi on your iOS devices, follow these steps:

  1. On your Mac or PC, you will have to download the latest Kodi installer from their official download page
  2. Choose iOS icon as your OS
  3. Next, under the Recommended tab select DEB FILE for ARM or ARM64 that will depend on your device
  4. Click on the iDevice button
  5. Follow the onscreen instructions to conclude installation for the latest Kodi version

And you’re good to go!

What Are The New Features In Kodi Leia Version 18?

Following is a list of new features which come bundled in the latest Kodi version:

  1. Music library can read metadata which enables organizing of music easier
  2. Increased support for remote controls and game controllers
  3. Support for retro games such as for SEGA and Atari
  4. Support for recording live television with a TV tuner and over-the-air antenna
  5. A skinning engine for creating distinctive Kodi skins
  6. Speech-to-text support on Android for movies and TV shows
  7. Digital Rights Management (DRM) makes compatibility easier with Kodi
  8. A newer version for Xbox One

To Wrap Up And How A VPN Can Help?

That’s all she wrote.

But if you are looking to play content on Kodi which is geo-restricted, you need a VPN to bypass the limitations. This enables you to access content effortlessly. Furthermore, you are able to safeguard yourself against unwanted speed throttling by ISP. Therefore, bid farewell to slower streaming, and instead welcome faster speeds.

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DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – 2019/02/11

DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – February 11, 2019

— a switch from one sign language to another

Deaf people of Iceland, until 1910, used sign language
of Denmark as their own language. Because of national
pride, these Icelandic deaf people slowly developed
their own sign language and over the years, dropped
the Danish sign language in favor of their own!


— a comment from a police dispatch center

A spokesperson from a police dispatch center

we do not automatically follow up on text 911
calls until we make sure these are not
accidental calls!


— dismissing a deaf ADA discrimination lawsuit

A judge in Louisiana dismissed a deaf ADA discrimination
lawsuit (no interpreter in a hospital stay). Reason was
that there was no proof or evidence nor paperwork by the
deaf litigant, saying that her ADA rights were violated.
The hospital legal team did provide the documents the
judge wanted.



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DeafDigest Gold – February 10, 2019
Gold Edition – updated every Monday
Serving the Deaf Community since 1996; 23rd year

weekly DeafDigest Blue & Gold editions: (updated every Monday)
Employment ads web site:
Old Fogey
Low Accuracy
Last week’s ASL Videos in youtube:
This week’s ASL Videos in youtube:
list of upcoming Deaf National Events
Top stories about the deaf:
Google Live Transcribe said it is making
use of smartphones easier for the deaf –
one great use is turning speech into captions.
Parents of a 4-month old deaf child must pay
approximately $6850.00 if they wish to learn
sign language to communicate with the baby.
It is in Great Britain, not in USA. Yes, the
parents are upset.
Astronomers at the University of California, Riverside
have been working on a special planetarium that
will vibrate, allowing the deaf to feel the
sounds from the activities in the sky.
Many business owners are not aware of ADA regulations
to make their web sites friendly to the deaf.
But some have argued that instead of filing lawsuits
left and right, just reach out and explain to these
clueless business people on these ADA regulations.
Why was Roger Stone (not deaf) upset when federal
officers raided his home and arrested him? His
wife was deaf and Stone was afraid the federal
officers would think the wife was ignoring their
This week’s ASL video in youtube
    A DeafDigest subscriber, when entering a busy restaurant,
always gives his name as “deaf” on the sign up chart.
    When the “deaf” name comes up, the hostess knows it is
a deaf person and will tell him that his table is ready.
    He was afraid that if he gave the hostess his name,
he may overlook the lipreading when the hostess shouts
the name.
This week’s ASL video in youtube:
Unlock the phone with CapTel® Captioned Telephone! CapTel shows
word-for-word captions of everything a caller says over the phone, letting
you read everything that they say. Like captions on TV – for the phone!
Captions are provided at no cost to the user, with no monthly fees or
contracts required. For more information or to order call 1-800-233-9130
For more info about CapTel or any of the many assistive listening devices
we offer,
Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!
CapTel® Captioned Telephone – See What Everyone is Talking About!
This week’s ASL video in youtube
    Every year 6,000 new words join the
Japanese dictionary.
    This means the average of 16 or 17 new words
per day.
    Do the deaf in Japan invent new signs for these
new words every day?
This week’s ASL video in youtube:
Rene Pellerin’s Corner:
Annual DeafBlind Camps and Retreats are very popular.
We DeafBlind folks gather at camps for a week.
There are many camps and retreats all over the USA and Canada.
We get to do activities that we don’t typically get at home.
Importantly, volunteer SSPs and interpreters are there to give us support.
Without their support, our death defying escapades likely could not
Friends, consider volunteering for a week to provide support for
individuals who are DeafBlind.
I’m thinking of going to the Canadian DeafBlind Camp!  Who’s coming with
Rene’s show business started in year 2010 and it focuses on the
You can email him at
For postings, announcements and employment ad rates:
DeafDigest Sports:
if you know of mainstreamed athletes, please
click on mainstream on the right side of
mainstreamed athletes
Gallaudet Athletics online store
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the employment ads section:
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DeafDigest Blue – February 10, 2019

DeafDigest Blue – February 10, 2019
Blue Edition – updated every Monday
Serving the Deaf Community since 1996; 23rd year

Employment ads web site:
Last week’s ASL Videos in youtube
This week’s ASL videos in youtube
Top stories about the deaf:
As usual, the Super Bowl pre-game sign language
rendition of the National Anthem has been cut
off from the TV screen. The NFL has been
suffering from too many black eyes, and this is
another one.
The MYP, with 70 percent of voters, in the Puppy
Bowl, is Bumble, who is deaf and blind. DeafDigest
hopes she found a forever home.
Nebraska becomes the latest state to consider
a bill to remove the “hearing impaired” wording
and to replace it with “deaf and hard of hearing/deaf
or hard of hearing”
At the Philadelphia 30th Street Amtrak train stop,
the old fashioned information screen was taken down
last month because it was not ADA compliant. The
passengers were angry about it because they loved
that information screen. It will be put back on
to make passengers happy. How and to what extent
could it be made ADA-compliant, the railroad
officials yet do not have an answer!
A two year old deaf girl in the metro Boston
has 20 hearing neighbors willing to learn
sign language to communicate with her.
If this is true, this is unusual because
in almost all cases, neighbors do not bother
to learn sign language at all.
Unlock the phone with CapTel® Captioned Telephone! CapTel shows
word-for-word captions of everything a caller says over the phone, letting
you read everything that they say. Like captions on TV – for the phone!
Captions are provided at no cost to the user, with no monthly fees or
contracts required. For more information or to order call 1-800-233-9130
For more info about CapTel or any of the many assistive listening devices
we offer,
Follow us on Facebook and Twitter!
CapTel® Captioned Telephone – See What Everyone is Talking About!
weekly DeafDigest Blue & Gold editions: (updated every Monday)
This week’s ASL video in youtube
    In the 1950’s and 1960’s, the most powerful deaf man in
USA was Boyce Williams.
    He worked for the old Health, Education and Welfare
cabinet in the Federal government. He started the
National Theatre of the Deaf, the Registry of Interpreters
for the Deaf, Captioned Films for the Deaf, Sign Language
program at NAD, the National Leadership Training Program
at CSUN, NTID and others.
    Suddenly, he lost his power. Why? Because his boss
was Mary E. Switzer. She had a lot of power and
allowed Boyce to follow his ideas. She retired,
and there was no one to work with Boyce.
    As a result, we have not gotten too many new
programs for the deaf since 1970’s.
– for ASL News version with captions, please visit:
Lip reading tale
A deaf man and a hearing man were chatting on the sidewalk.
A stranger passed through them.
The deaf man thought the hearing man said:
He’s a millionaire
The hearing man actually said:
He’s a billionaire
This week’s ASL video in youtube
    A deaf husband and wife both have a cute hearing
grandchild from their hearing daughter.
    The cute child knows that her grandparents are
deaf – but she thinks everyone is deaf. When she
grows up she then realizes there are deaf people
and there are hearing people!
– for ASL News version with captions, please visit:
As we have seen, the stenocaptioner’s personal dictionary is very
important to accurate translation. Every word must be in the dictionary in
order to translate properly. A captioner may be able to write very
accurately and quickly, but if the words have not been entered into the
dictionary, it may still be very difficult to follow what is being said.
Here is an example of the words being written correctly but not
translating properly because they have not been entered into the
captioner’s dictionary:
“Then he went on to discuss the core pus el and the cap Larry.”
This should read:
“Then he went on to discuss the corpuscle and the capillary.”
The words “corpuscle” and “capillary” must be entered in the personal
dictionary in order for them to translate properly.
For postings, announcements and employment ad rates,
please email
News of the Week – Looking Back 10 Years Ago:
    For years DeafDigest has always felt that the deaf
that want to actually fight fires are being discriminated
against. These deaf fire fighters at volunteer departments
are relegated to small fires, equipment operation and
other back room responsibilities.
    Well, in Mark S. Kite, Sr, who is deaf, we have a
Deaf Chief of a hearing volunteer fire department.
    He supervises his crew of 75 volunteer fire fighters
at the Yukon Volunteer Fire Company, located in the
Pittsburgh area. He was elevated to chief first week
in January. He was with the company for 31 years.
    Is he a deaf person, functioning as a hearing
person? No! He is deaf and uses ASL and when communicating
with hearing he relies on careful speech and lip reading.
Of course, there are hand signs that fire fighters use to
communicate with each other during fire fighting.
News of the Week – Looking Back 5 Years Ago:
Congressman Kevin Yoder has been reappointed to the
Gallaudet board of trustees. He is the one that has been
trying to form a Deaf Caucus on the Hill.
for sub/unsub options, go to
Employment ads web site is at:
Copyright 2019 by Barry Strassler, DeafDigest.


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DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – 2019/02/08

DeafDigest Mid-Week edition – February 8, 2019

— easy change or difficult change

Major League Baseball changed the wording “disabled list”
to “injured list” at the request of disabled groups. They
felt that “disabled list” was confusing and was a bad
reflection on them. Could we do the same, asking all
USA newspapers to change these wordings from “deaf-mute”
and “deaf and dumb” to either deaf or hard of hearing?


— complaints about deaf “emoji”

DeafDigest mentioned a couple of days ago that
the deaf emoji is one of the new emojis coming
up. They are saying it does not represent all
ranges – ASL-signing deaf, oral speaking-deaf,
late deafened, hard of hearing, Cued Speech-deaf,


— deaf truck driver in middle of a broken dam lawsuit

The Oroville Dam, in north California, has so many
problems. There is a lawsuit going on. It was
mentioned in a lawsuit that a deaf woman, who
drives a truck, was asked by her boss to drive her
vehicle on the top of the broken dam. Her job was
to listen for sounds inside the concrete. A
state public works employee, who witnessed it,
said it was unbelievable that it happened as it
was an impossible job for her. While she is innocent
and not involved in the court case, the lawsuit is
getting uglier and uglier with the plaintiff
and the defendant blaming each other for the mess.



Deaf jobs – latest update

02/03/19 Blue and Gold editions & sub options at:


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Snopen Thread!

Everyone stay safe. Check your bus to make sure that it isn’t a snow route now. Give yourself extra time to get places. And give a thought for the people who have to work in this mess.


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Cyberattack Attempt Made on Australian Parliament

Australian authorities have stated that they are investigating a hacking attempt on its parliament’s network. The parliament network is used by MPs and their staff members for emails, amongst other data.

For now, lawmakers have gone on record to state there is no evidence about information being accessed or stolen. However, politicians’ were advised to change their passwords immediately.

Cybersecurity experts in Australia suggested the attack originated from a foreign state. Meanwhile, the Australian PM, Scott Morrison, refused to comment on the nature or source of the cyberattack. He did state though that no government departments or agencies were compromised.

Senior lawmakers claimed there was no evidence suggesting the cyberattack attempt was aimed to influence or disrupt political or electoral processes.

This is not the first time the Australian government faced such a cyberattack, as it has dealt with several in recent years, out of which a few are attributed to nations like China, according to local media.

In 2015 and 2016, there were cyberattacks back-to-back on the government’s statistics and weather agencies. Senior Australian ministers’ email systems were also breached back in 2011.

Meanwhile, there are those that believe there is more to this breach than what is being told since there was news of a letter being drafted to demand the reinstatement of the Commonwealth or Australia would have no choice but to leave the British Empire.
Conspiracy theory or not, there is no denying the fact that such cyberattacks have increased in a short amount of time, and it seems as though they will continue to rise drastically. If individuals, businesses, and governments wish to prevent hackers and cybercriminals from having their way, they will need to adopt effective security measures, like using a VPN, to ensure they remain secure and anonymous at all times.

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