Mobile app data sharing ‘out of control’

Mobile app data sharing 'out of control'

Data harvesting and sharing by mobile apps is "out of control", University of Oxford researchers have warned.

Nearly 90% of free apps on the Google Play store share data with Google parent company Alphabet, the Financial Times reported .

Google said it had clear policies for how developers could handle data, and that the research had mischaracterised some "ordinary functions" of apps.

"If an app violates our policies, we take action," the online giant said.

Many free apps track behaviour across many different digital services, which lets companies build up a detailed profile of people using the app.

This data can include age, gender, location, and information about other apps on a smartphone.

The data can then be used for a number of purposes including targeted advertising, credit scoring, or targeted political campaign messages, the researchers said in a paper .

Revenues from online advertising are more than $59bn (£45bn) per year in the US alone, they said.

And many people are not aware how data flows from smartphones to advertising groups, data brokers and other intermediaries, Prof Nigel Shadbolt, who lead the research team, told the BBC.

"People [in businesses] are desperate to get as many eyeballs and click-throughs as they can," he said.

Researcher Max Van Kleek added: "I don’t think there’s any notion of control." Information pool

Data tended to get concentrated by big companies and their subsidiaries.

The researchers found that more than 88% of free apps on Google Play shared information with firms owned by Alphabet.

Nearly 43% of apps shared data with Facebook, while significant percentages shared data with Twitter, Verizon, Microsoft and Amazon firms.

News apps – and apps aimed at children – shared information with the largest number of trackers, they found.

Google said: "Across Google and in Google Play we have clear policies and guidelines for how developers and third-party apps can handle data and we require developers to be transparent and ask for user permission. If an app violates our policies, we take action."

Google added that it disagreed with the methodology of the study.

"It mischaracterises ordinary functional services like crash reporting and analytics, and how apps share data to deliver those services," Google said.

But campaigner Frederike Kaltheuner from Privacy International said that it has become "impossible" for the average user to understand how their data is being used, and to opt out.

"Companies track people… and they use this data to profile and then target people in ways that most of us would find intrusive and very surprising," she said.

"This is no longer about the need to collect data to show ‘relevant ads’ – this is about profit maximisation at the expense of people’s fundamental rights," Ms Kaltheuner added.

Check in to the Hilton Heathrow to bring style back to the jet age

Check in to the Hilton Heathrow to bring style back to the jet age

Cocktails in your room at the Hilton Heathrow airport hotel. | Photo: GSN In a world where the words ‘airport hotel’ denotes a million shades of grey mediocrity, the Hilton Heathrow flies above the crowd.

Just a few minutes walk from Terminal 4 via a covered walkway, it succeeds in adding style and charm to mere convenience. Contemporary design

As the great comic sci-fi writer, Douglas Adams, remarked, no civilisation in the universe has ever coined the phrase, ‘as pretty as an airport’.

And indeed, the Hilton’s cavernous central atrium does evoke an aircraft hanger. Whether this is considered brilliant architecture or a design problem to overcome, I am not sure.

But the Hilton has cleverly made the most of it by adding to the aviation theme.

Just like the airport itself, it’s best viewed from above. So ascend to your room via the glass elevator and step out to the landings, spread like wings over the space.

The Hilton’s atrium has been cleverly designed to split up the enormous space.

Seen from the upstairs landings, cabbage-white butterfly wings appear to provide a roof to one of the restaurants. A towering sculpture fills another area. And a runway of lights, set into the floor, directs you to your room.

The door number for each room is picked out in cool black and white light fittings, complete with an aircraft symbol. Restful rooms before your flight

If you are at an airport hotel, you will almost certainly be dog-tired or need a sound sleep before a long journey.

The Hilton’s rooms deliver the peace you need in stylish surroundings.

The lime-green armchair and dark grey desk chair could be lifted from a Scandinavian design magazine.

Meanwhile the bed-head evokes the kind of privacy shell you see around reclining seats in business or first on intercontinental jets. Of course, in this case, everything is far more spacious, and the bed really is 100% flat. It’s also very comfortable.

The comfortable bedroom at Hilton Heathrow has aircraft styling but is a world away from sleeping on a plane.

Don’t panic if you packed your electric converters at the bottom of your luggage. The Hilton thoughtfully provides plug sockets suitable for most international devices.

The high standard of design continues in the bathroom. It boasts a cool mussel-shell shaped hand-basin.

Most importantly, there’s a bright-white walk-in shower with powerful rain shower to help you wash away your weariness and woes. Finally, Crabtree and Evelyn products add some pampering to the experience. Dine and drink

If you only associate airport dining with tasteless junk food, think again. Heathrow has worked hard to extend its restaurant quality. And the Hilton has several good choices.

If you upgrade to using the hotel’s tasteful and modern Executive Lounge, make sure you enjoy its happy hour with complimentary prosecco, wines and beer.

You can also enjoy a delicious smörgasbord of snacks and treats. Tuck in to vol-au-vents, canapes, samosas, spring rolls, olives, gherkins, crudite, a cheese selection and more.

We had to avoid eating too much, however, as we had a table booked at the hotel’s Aromi Restaurant.

It boasts an authentic Italian menu, delivering crowd-pleasing traditional favourites with contemporary flair.

I started by tucking into a fresh mozzarella and tomato salad. Both the star ingredients were high quality, accentuated by rocket, pine nuts, pesto and balsamic beads.

For my main course, I found the chicken saltambocca tender and succulent. It was served with orzo pasta, cooked al dente and with just the right amount of truffle to be aromatic, rather than overpowering.

My partner meanwhile had an exciting and attractively laid out plate of antipasti, with wafer thin slices of good salami and perfect artichokes. For his main, he tucked into swordfish, cooked perfectly, and served with a fresh, zingy salad of tomatoes and olives.

Our charming waiter completed the meal with a limoncello, served with almond biscotti. He was keen to offer desert, which certainly looked tempting, but seemed more than our waistlines could take after such a good meal. Meet the new Portobello Burger

If you don’t fancy Italian, the Hilton Heathrow offers several alternatives. These include a modern Chinese menu at Zen Oriental and international dishes, including a first-class burger, at Oscar’s.

Oscars is also the home of the new Portobello Burger, which mixes 30% field mushrooms with 70% beef. Not only does this make a tastier, moist burger, it also cuts the C02 impact of the burger by almost a third. What better treat for National Mushroom Day (15 October)? Stay at the Hilton London Heathrow Airport

Sadly, we had to jump on a shuttle bus to our terminal first thing in the morning. So we didn’t have time to enjoy a dip in the Hilton Heathrow’s pool, unwind in its sauna and steam room or use its well-equipped gym.

But we did find it to be a very convenient and relaxing way to start our trip.

You can check rates and book a stay at the Hilton London Heathrow Airport here. Best of Heathrow on Gay Star News

Iowa man burns public library’s LGBTI children’s books in live video

Iowa man burns public library's LGBTI children's books in live video

21 vibrant pictures of the biggest, sunniest Honolulu Pride so far Photo: Rescue the Perishing Facebook An Iowa man threw LGBTI children’s books into a fire on a live Facebook video.

Paul Dorr , who t0ok the books from Orange City library, chucked the books into the fire in the 30 minute video. He is director of Rescue the Perishing, a organization that campaigns ‘against moral evil to advance the Kingdom of Christ’ by standing ‘against abortion, the sexual revolution in general, corruption in the churches and colleges.’

He says in the video: ‘You won’t be peddling this one anymore. You should all be ashamed of yourselves and repent.’ Burning the books

After posting the video, Dorr released a very lengthy statement on his website.

Dorr concludes with: ‘continuing my 25-year stand for Christ I cannot stand by and let the adults – this time the shameful Orange City library board – bring the next group of little children into their foul sexual reality without a firm resistance.

‘I have check out, from the Orange City library, several of the books targeting 4- & 5-year-old’s which the Drag Queens will likely be reading to children here in Orange City this evening.

‘These copies owned by the city of Orange City, IA will not be part of those they get to read, as I am going to do what the German church leaders should have done in 1933. I am now going to burn these copies. God be praised!’

In this he’s referencing a story time to young children in many public libraries read by Drag Queens . These story times hope to highlight LGBTI issues. Continuing the statement

Throughout the statement, he mentions how sexual education, which he refers to as ‘sex talk’, has changed through the years to highlight the existence of LGBTI people and AIDS.

Then, he claims to fear the rise of socialist Nazism by pro-LGBTI people, while referencing Hirschfeld, the famous LGBTI research library burnt by the Nazis.

Recently, religious groups organized against the books . Over 300 people signed a petition to ban books containing homosexual and trans content in a public library.

This movement was led by Rev Sacha Walicord, who said LGBTI books are ‘pushing an agenda’. More from Gay Star News:

The art of the vulva: do we have a problem with vaginal symbols?

The art of the vulva: do we have a problem with vaginal symbols?

21 vibrant pictures of the biggest, sunniest Honolulu Pride so far Georgia O’Keeffe painted Grey Lines with Black, Blue and Yellow in 1923. When it comes to genitalia representation, we’re so invested with phallic icons that anyone can legitimately claim to be an expert on dick-drawing. It doesn’t matter whether you’ve actually seen a penis in the flesh or not.

However, things change if we think about vaginas . We’ve all come out from one, but hardly anybody knows how to draw it. And don’t even get us started on how to draw a clitoris.

As if there was such thing as a mono-dimensional image of a vagina! Just like penises, vaginas come in all shapes and sizes. Yet you’ll be lucky if anyone – mostly men, but also women – knows how to draw one without going for the safe, stylized triangle. Vaginal disch-art

Why is it so? Well, this has nothing to do with one’s artistic skills. And it has everything to do with the way vaginas are concealed as something it would be either disrespectful or disgusting to show.

The patriarchy has taught us that female sexuality is something to enjoy in private, if at all. Therefore, penises can be boldly put on display, while vaginas need to stay where they belong: covered by virginal underwear.

Many artists have challenged that assumption throughout the years, coming up with some interesting vaginal depictions.

One might argue that femininity has always been a popular subject in fine arts.

While the female body has always been represented in traditional arts as a symbol of fertility, vaginas were rarely shown in an accurate manner. And such works of arts were hardly ever accessible to the general public.

That was up until the realism of French painter Gustave Courbet took the game to a more graphic level. ‘The Mona Lisa of vaginas’

Courbet will be forever remembered for his most provocative painting, celebrating the power of female sexuality. It is so famous it has earned the title of ‘the Mona Lisa of vaginas’.

Finished in 1886, L’Origine du Monde (The Origin of the World) has been on display at the Musée d’Orsay since 1995, shocking patrons with its graphic content.

If you think shock might be a thing of the past, an urban legend to scare the new generations, you need to think twice. Facebook banned the painting in 2011, in the middle of a prude wave affecting all other NSFW works of art.

Portraying a woman with her legs spread open, the work of art shows a vagina in all its hairy majesty. It is not possible to identify the model as her face is not in the frame. It’s rather her vagina to be the focal point, one of the first mainstream examples in arts.

Recently, however, the mystery on the identity of the model has been solved. Experts say they are ‘99% sure’ the painting depicts the Parisian ballet dancer Constance Queniaux. She was also a mistress of the Ottoman diplomat Halil Şerif Pasha. What do you see here?

What Courbet did was groundbreaking in many regards, but it wasn’t certainly the first depiction of the female reproductive organ in history.

The Japanese print artist Utagawa Kunisada used the traditional ukiyo-e woodblocks to create Beanman and Beanwoman Prepare to Attack the Vagina, a print dating back to 1827, more than sixty years before Courbet.

In the print, the labia and the interiors are even more visible than in L’Origine du Monde, where they appeared to be partly concealed by a wild, unapologetic bush.

After Courbet, other Western artists took upon themselves to show the female body in a new light.

Austrian Expressionist Egon Schiele inherited Gustav Klimt’s focus on erotic images of the female body. He created several sensuous paintings and sketches featuring women, even in clearly sexual, queer depictions.

In terms of female genitalia, Reclining Nude With Yellow Towel is one of the most prominent examples. The early Expressionist painting dates back to 1917 and features a female figure leaning on one side and spreading her legs to reveal her vagina to the looker.

American painter Georgia O’Keeffe is among those artists honoring a delicate yet raw femininity.

Despite the artist rejected the interpretations of her nearly 200 flower paintings as depicting female genitalia, there is one that leaves little to the imagination.

O’Keeffe painted Black Iris in 1926. The enlarged flower has darker petals resembling the labia majora and minora. There is also an evocative darker area leading to the center of the flower, suggesting the entrance to the reproductive canal. There’s a vulva on my plate!

Contemporary art has several and more daring examples of vaginal depictions in arts.

In 1966, Niki de Saint-Phalle, Jean Tinguely och Per Olov Ultvedt created an installation for the Moderna Museet in Stockholm.

Hon – en katedral (She – A Cathedral) was a giant sculpture of a pregnant woman lying on her back with her legs open. Visitors can literally enter the artwork, 75 feet wide and 20 feet tall. On the inside, patrons could find an aquarium, a cinema showing a Greta Garbo’s movie, a bar and much more.

In the late 70s, The Dinner Party was perhaps the most ambitious work featuring the female body.

Judy Chicago created one of the first feminist artworks, conflating inspirational women and the idea of a blooming female sexuality.

Chicago figuratively brought some of the most inspirational women in history at the same table. First exhibited in 1979, the artwork features Virginia Woolf, Susan B. Anthony, and again Georgia O’Keeffe among the guests. Each place-setting at the triangular giant table includes a hand-painted china plate, depicting a brightly-colored, stylized vulva.

In more recent years, different, anatomical vaginas became the protagonists of The Great Wall of Vagina.

Created by Jamie McCarthy the 2013 artwork displays the molds of 400 women’s’ vaginas. Its aim is to normalize the idea that there is no such thing as the ‘perfect vagina’. On the contrary, every possible variant is perfectly normal. The clitoris and other stories

Women, men, and non-binaries might have a hard time trying to crack the anatomy of the clitoris.

American artist Laura Kingsley created Clitorosity, a project raising awareness on the key to the female pleasure. Traveling the world, Kingsley graced different locations with sidewalk chalk arts portraying the little pleasure button. Which doesn’t look like a button at all.

‘After giving talks to hundreds of people on my college campus on the clitoris and sexual communication, I realized how surprised the majority of the people were when they saw an anatomical clitoris diagram for the first time,’ Kingsley told Bustle last March.

‘Clitorosity was born from a dream of a collaborative and creative way to spark more of these conversations and spread awareness about the full structure of the clitoris.’

While Kingsley is still on her educative mission, vagina artworks from around the world could soon have their own permanent home.

The Vagina Museum could become a reality. Based in the UK, the project aimed to create the world’s first museum dedicated to the vulva. If you’re wondering, there’s already one for penis art in Iceland.

‘We’re currently very much in the startup stage. We’re doing traveling exhibitions and looking for a temporary space for about 2-3 years,’ the project’s director Florence Schechter told Gay Star News.

Following its launch in 2017, Schechter hopes to turn her project in a permanent museum by 2032. There’s plenty of time to catch up on the female anatomy until then. You might also like:

Firefighter is suing New York City Fire Department for homophobic abuse

Firefighter is suing New York City Fire Department for homophobic abuse

Photo: Pixabay A firefighter is suing the New York City Fire Department (FDNY) after his squad allegedly branded him ‘gay’.

Jason Johnson, 40, filed a Manhattan federal lawsuit on Monday (22 October) claiming a campaign of harassment forced him to quit an elite rescue unite.

The former National Guardsman joined the FDNY in 2006 before making it into the Special Operations Command unit in 2016. The suit claims he was one of only two black firefighters in the unit and ostracized from the start.

One incident references a ride in a firetruck where one of the squad allegedly attempts to grab Johnson’s crotch. Johnson responds by trying to kiss the alleged grabber, attempting to make him feel ‘equally uncomfortable’.

The suit states: ‘For the remainder of the ride, [the accused] and another firefighter made repeated disparaging remarks about Johnson’s perceived homosexual orientation, saying excitedly, “You’re gay, you’re gay, we have confirmation!”‘ Continued harassment

Another firefighter is said to have remarked: ‘You weren’t supposed to kiss him. You were supposed to punch him! No straight guy would have kissed him.’

Other incidents cited include being taunted when Johnson arrived sweaty from jogging or biking to work. The Squad 18 firefighters would say things like: ‘Did you run through west village to say hi to your gay friends?’

They also allegedly photographed him without his permission while changing. The photo was doctored to include a thought bubbly above his head, saying ‘hey boys’. This was shown to the rest of the squad.

The suit also accused them of racial discrimination. In one incident referenced by the suit, the squad participated in a water rescue drill. A fellow firefighter is said to have remarked ‘black guys really don’t do well in water.’

The lawsuit states that the teasing and harassment continued until Johnson was removed from the unit in March 2017.

Johnson is seeking a court order to reinstate him into the Special Operations divisions, as well as damages. More from Gay Star News:

Courtney Act: gay men are the worst when it comes to biphobia

Courtney Act: gay men are the worst when it comes to biphobia

Courtney Act hosts the first season of The Bi Life | Photo: Supplied/NBCUniversal The multi-talented Courtney Act has the rare, but amazing ability to talk about serious topics, but also be hilarious at the same time.

In a recent chat about her new show The Bi Life , we dove deep on sexual identity, Brexit, but also the weirdest places she’s ever had sex. That could honestly only ever happen in an interview with the winner of Celebrity Big Brother UK.

Act who made it to the top three of RuPaul’s Drag Race season six, identifies as pansexual.

‘Which has nothing to do with having sex with cookware, which many people like to “ha, ha, ha” about,’ Act says.

‘I’ve never had an intimate experience with cookware… I’m not saying I’d count it out.’

The Australian-born Act (Shane Jenek), rose to fame in her come country in the early 2000s. She auditioned for the first season of Australian Idol in 2003 both as a boy and then as Courtney.

The drag queen made it to the finals of that series and even released a single called ‘Rub Me Wrong’ which hit number 29 on the Aussie singles chart.

Even though she didn’t win Australian Idol, it was clear a star had been born. Act’s dry sense of humor, talent and stunning have assured her success in whatever she tries. Courtney Act (center) hangs out with some of the contestants on The Bi Life | Photo: Supplied Pansexuality

Taking on hosting duties for the UK’s first ever bisexual dating show – The Bi Life – seemed a natural role for the reality TV veteran. Not just because of her talent but because of her work to raise bi+ visibility.

Act admitted that she constantly had to educate people about pansexuality.

‘Even with my best friend, I was talking to him the other day and he said “don’t you think you’re just a fag who’s had sex with a couple of women”,’ Act says.

‘And I’m like “yeah, that’s the problem”. When you don’t have any ability to tease out gay or straight, it is just two options.

‘I am attracted to different genders. I’ve had sex with women and trans people and people of different genders and I know I will again. So to me, that’s a textbook example of what being bi or pan means.’

Act explains she’d have those sexual experiences regardless of the labels.

Bisexual and pansexual suffer from poor mental health because of discrimination they face about their sexuality. That often comes from both within and outside of the LGBTI communities.

So having someone as famous as Courtney Act speaking up on behalf of you is a massive boon for bi+ visibility. Gay men are the worst

But Act is very blunt when it comes to who she thinks is the worst at stigmatizing bi+ people.

‘I really think gay men are really guilty of bi erasure because a lot of gay men used bisexuality on their way to being gay,’ she says.

‘Gay men like to have the benefit of other people’s empathy and understanding their own sexuality and I think there needs to be a step taken back to say “just because I took a step towards identifying as bisexual on my way to being gay, doesn’t mean that bisexual people don’t exist”.’ The Bi Life

The hotly anticipated The Bi Life hits TV screens on E! UK & Ireland on 25 October.

Sydney LGBTI bar accused of straight-washing for Prime Minister’s visit

Sydney LGBTI bar accused of straight-washing for Prime Minister's visit

Australian PM Scott Morrison attended a private event at the LBGBTI venue last month. | Photo: Facebook A popular Sydney LGBTI venue has been accused of removing all their rainbow flags for a private event attended by PM Scott Morrison.

Concerns have been raised by Sydney band Stereogamous, who posted a Facebook story today (23 October) addressing last month’s incident at The Imperial Hotel.

On 25 September, Scott Morrison took a selfie with boxer Danny Green at the venue. The bar is a favorite for the LGBTI community, having hosted several drag events among others.

Scott Morrison is Australia’s sixth Prime Minister in 11 years. He is a Pentecostal Christian and therefore voted against same-sex marriage during the country’s debate in 2017. ‘Our homophobic Prime Minister’

Stereogamous reposted that selfie today. They captioned the picture with ‘This is our homophobic Prime Minister at our local gay bar’.

Shortly afterward, DJ and musician Niveen Hoe, took a screenshot of it and uploaded it to her Facebook account. She asked ‘punters, artists and promoters’ to boycott the iconic venue.

‘If you knew that Sydney’s most iconic LGBTQIA venue invited Scott Morrison in for a function, but removed gay flags and adornments in order to make this racist homophobe more comfortable, what would you do?’ she asks.

She furthermore added: ‘Personally, I won’t be working there anymore. At the risk of cutting off the hand that feeds me, I’m going to say NO to The Imperial Hotel. And to punters, artists and promoters, there are other venues such as The Bearded Tit and The Red Rattler who deserve our work and love far more.’ The Sydney venue rejected the accusations

The Imperial Hotel firmly rejected the accusations in a Facebook post.

‘Any accusation The Imperial Hotel, Erskineville recently removed our LGBTQI+ flags is simply NOT true,’ they wrote.

‘We will always proudly fly our rainbow colours in respect for our LGBTQI+ family, as we continue to support our community as we have done for The ‘YES’ Campaign, NAIDOC Week, Miss First Nation or special events that embody queer culture. In fact we recently installed a permanent custom-made framed rainbow flag into the wall above our front doors.’

However, regulars were not satisfied with the explanations. The venue, in fact, failed to address whether they actually removed the flags for the PM’s visit.

Moreover, they welcomed a politician with anti-LGBTI views in a queer space, a Facebook user pointed out.

‘You still let a man in who should never be allowed anywhere near a safer space or lgbt+ venue like what you are supposed to be.’

GSN has reached out to The Imperial Hotel for further comment. You might also like:

Trans kids send thank you drawings to Emma Watson and her response is cute

Trans kids send thank you drawings to Emma Watson and her response is cute

21 vibrant pictures of the biggest, sunniest Honolulu Pride so far Photo: FierceMum, Twitter Emma Watson recently came out in support of trans rights and now kids are thanking her.

Ahead of the Gender Recognition Act consultation in the UK, the British actress posted a photo of herself on Twitter wearing a white t-shirt. The shirt read ‘Trans rights are human rights’.

Many trans people at the time thanked Watson for the statement. The GRA consultation has subjected trans people to a deluge of insults and scare-stories, which many of them have found emotionally distressing.

So in thanks, trans advocate and Twitter user FierceMum shared an adorable thread from trans kids thanking the Harry Potter star for her support. Adorable photos in thanks

The tweet reads: ‘Trans children were overjoyed this week to see @EmmaWatson come out for trans equality. Trans kids around the world are having a rought time & visible allies matter. Trans kids& siblings from around world say thank you.’

What follows is an amazingly artistic thread. Trans children were overjoyed this week to see @EmmaWatson come out for trans equality. Trans kids around the world are having a rough time & visible allies matter. Trans kids & siblings from around the world say thank you (thread). #IKnowWhoIAm #ProtectTransKids #Butterfly https://t.co/e7VkrFyF4l — FierceMum (@FierceMum) October 22, 2018 From adorable Hermione to a beautiful Belle: By 11 year old big sister of trans girl, Australia pic.twitter.com/riwQWtcje2 — FierceMum (@FierceMum) October 22, 2018 From little trans kids offering their support to cis siblings offering their love: By 7 year old little sister of trans boy, Finland pic.twitter.com/v1CK7inAiL — FierceMum (@FierceMum) October 22, 2018 On a normal day we would have a bunch of pictures from American trans kids. But their families are busy defending their right to exist. Trans kids need allies. They need support. They need to know the world cares. #SupportTransKids @VanessaFordDC @the_debijackson @girlpodcast — FierceMum (@FierceMum) October 22, 2018 FierceMum also notes: ‘On a normal day we would have a bunch of pictures from American trans kids. But their families are busy defending their right to exist. Trans kids needs allies. They need support. They need to know the world cares. #SupportTransKids’

Well, Emma Watson proved once again how much of an ally she is. #WontBeErased Thank you for these beautiful drawings!! #ProtectTransKids #TransRightsAreHumanRights https://t.co/8NPDPFjT1f — Emma Watson (@EmmaWatson) October 22, 2018 The Beauty and the Beast star wrote: ‘#WontBeErased Thank you for these beautifuldrawings!! #ProtectTransKids #TransRightsAreHumanRights’

Many people flooded the tweet with positive messages.

Children’s charity Mermaids wrote: ‘You have made so many children so very happy today. Thank you for standing up for trans kids, In a world where misinformation about transgender children runs rife, to have you as an ally lifting there [sic.] voices is amazing.’

Whereas another added: ‘Thank you so much this means the world to my little girl. She was so overjoyed when I showed her your tweet. Thankyou from me also for standing by trans kids they are all so amazing and deserve as much support as they can get.’

This is good news for many transgender-supporting families. Earlier this week, a leaked memo from President Trump revealed plans to legislate trans identities out of existence in the US . More from Gay Star News:

‘It is painful, it is hateful, and it will not go unchallenged’ says American Civil Liberties Union director James Esseks

EXCLUSIVE: Pussy Riot head to Hong Kong to fight for LGBTI rights

EXCLUSIVE: Pussy Riot head to Hong Kong to fight for LGBTI rights

Pussy Riot | Photo: Facebook The world famous punk and protest group, Pussy Riots, has affirmed its fight for LGBTI rights.

Speaking exclusively to Gay Star News, ahead of its appearance at the Miles of Love forum in Hong Kong, the infamous group said it would stand up for the LGBTI communities.

‘Fighting against sexism, homophobia, biphobia, transphobia and standing up for LGBTI rights is always in Pussy Riot agenda,’ Pussy Riot told GSN. Pussy Riot

Russia’s Pussy Riots came to international prominence as a feminist protest punk rock band. It became known for it guerilla music performances including at the Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Savior. More recently, some members of the group invaded the pitch at the soccer World Cup final in Russia this year. Dressed as police officers Pussy Riots protested for the release of political prisoners. They also called for the government to allow public protest among other things.

In September one of its members, Peter Verzilov, was hospitalized in Germany. The group claimed he had been poisoned. Two member of Pussy Riot | Photo: Supplied Pussy Riots have always stood up for feminism, LGBTI rights and opposed Vladimir Putin. But now it is coming together with other activists to collaborate in making change at Miles of Love.
‘We believe that international collaborations are very important components of advocacy and activism, so it’s necessary to be able to travel freely to built bridges and networks,’ Pussy Riot said. Activists come together

Pussy Riot is performing at and participating at the world’s first Miles of Love in early November. The Miles of Love forum will bring together LGBTI activists and travel industry experts from more than 15 countries.

The forum will explore how the travel industry can work with LGBT+ communities for real and impactful change.
‘It’s a big honour for us to participate in Miles of Love – to meet human rights activists from different countries, to change experiences, to think together how we can make a world better place to live,’ Pussy Riot said.
Planet Ally and All Out are hosting the unique event. Responsible travel and LGBTI advocacy

Miles of Love plans to break new ground in exploring the interplay between LGBT+ issues and global tourism.

‘Tourism cannot achieve its full potential until all destinations are committed to treating their LGBTQ visitors and citizens with respect,’ said John Tanzella, President and CEO of the International Gay and Lesbian Travel Association.

Pussy Riot described why freedom of travel is so important to human rights.

‘Sometimes we are arrested or get fined after some of our actions, some of Pussy Riot members have had problems trying to cross Russian border,’ the group said.

‘It’s very important for us to be able to travel freely, but not always we can be sure that we are going to cross the borders without any difficulties.’ Miles of Love

The forum is happening from 2-5 November at the Eaton Hotel in Hong Kong.

Other highlights from the world first event include a performance from Cambodia’s first gay dance company, Prumsodun Ok & NATYARASA. LGBT+ activists from Egypt, Indonesia and Malaysia will explain how tourism can help and hinder the march to equality.

Industry representatives will outline their work to bring genuine LGBT+ positive inclusiveness to their business approaches.

Tickets to the event are available here.

Trump addresses transgender memo, claims he’s ‘protecting the country’

Trump addresses transgender memo, claims he's 'protecting the country'

21 vibrant pictures of the biggest, sunniest Honolulu Pride so far Photo: Gage Skidmore, Flickr Donald Trump has finally addressed the memo that revealed plans to define gender based on genitals.

The leaked memo received widespread condemnation from people across the country. Protests erupted almost immediately after the news broke.

However, the US President has finally commented, stating he wants to ‘protect the country’.

Speaking on Monday (22 October): ‘We have a lot of different concepts right now. They have a lot of different things happening with respect to transgender right now.’

According to Reuters , after being asked about his campaign promise to protect the LGBTI community, he responded: ‘I’m protecting everybody. I want to protect our country.’ Intersex people are also at risk

The proposal in the memo – first reported by the New York Times – would see the administration attempt to change the definition of gender to male or female based on the genitals of the person at birth. It would then be unchangeable later in life.

This is also incredibly discriminatory to intersex people.

Without being able to define their gender identity, millions of transgender people would lose their protections. Brought in by President Barack Obama, transgender people are protected in healthcare, schools and the military.

The news has been devastating for the trans community in the States, as the community fears for their future.

Crisis support hotline Trans Lifeline have reported a massive increase in callers in the one day since the memo was leaked.

They wrote on Twitter: ‘Just today, we’ve gotten 2x the normal number of first-time callers and 4x the number of total callers.

‘Donations keep our Hotline running and our Microgrants flowing – give today and help us serve our community. Just today, we’ve gotten 2x the normal number of first-time callers and 4x the number of total callers. Donations keep our Hotline running and our Microgrants flowing – give today and help us serve our community. #WontBeErased #TransRightsAreHumanRights https://t.co/Hm2kKb1YgJ — Trans Lifeline (@TransLifeline) October 22, 2018 The memo will affect around 1.4 million trans people across the country. More from Gay Star News:

‘The current administration is trying to strip away my rights … my vote can change that’, said the transgender actress.