Gilad Edelman
Gilad Edelman
Gilad Edelman is WIRED's politics writer, based in Washington, DC. Before that, he was executive editor of the Washington Monthly. He has a degree from Yale Law School.Source
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Great News, America: Cheese Isn’t Bad for You

Great News, America: Cheese Isn’t Bad for You

Cheese is among the ultimate guilty pleasures. It’s gooey. It’s fatty. It’s delicious. It just has to be bad for you, right? Wrong. A large body of research suggests that cheese’s reputation as a fattening, heart-imperiling food is undeserved. When it comes to weight and other key health outcomes (and setting aside the issue of lactose intolerance, with apologies), cheese is neutral at worst, and possibly even good for you. And yet that research doesn’t seem to have broken through into common knowledge. If you Google “cheese,” the top result under “people also ask” is the ungrammatical...

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Gilad Edelman
Feb 22
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This Group Wants to ‘Ban Surveillance Advertising’

This Group Wants to ‘Ban Surveillance Advertising’

of Facebook, Twitter, and Google testify later this week at a House hearing, a number of familiar policy reforms will be on the table. Antitrust. Section 230. Privacy legislation. A new campaign wants to add another bold idea into the mix: “Ban Surveillance Advertising.” In an open letter posted today, the defines surveillance advertising as “the practice of extensively tracking and profiling individuals and groups, and then microtargeting ads at them based on their behavioral history, relationships, and identity.” That business model is at the heart of how Facebook and Google make money....

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Gilad Edelman
Mar 22
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Fake News Gets More Engagement on Facebook—But Only If It's Right-Wing

Fake News Gets More Engagement on Facebook—But Only If It's Right-Wing

a secret that extreme, less-than-accurate content finds a big audience on Facebook. In the months before , the list of most-engaged-with pages on the site was almost always dominated by far-right figures like Dan Bongino and Dinesh D’Souza, who are not known for their fealty to fact-based journalism. An anonymous Facebook executive Politico last September, “Right-wing populism is always more engaging.” New research released today, however, appears to be the first to show empirically that the relationship between accuracy and engagement varies dramatically based on where the source aligns on...

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Gilad Edelman
Mar 3
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Finally, an Interesting Proposal for Section 230 Reform

Finally, an Interesting Proposal for Section 230 Reform

of last year, there were few better symbols of bad-faith politics than Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, the law that gives online platforms legal immunity for user-generated content. After a fairly sleepy existence since its passage in 1996, Section 230 turned into an unlikely for a subset of Republican politicians who disingenuously blamed it for letting social media platforms discriminate against conservatives. (In fact, the law has nothing to do with partisan balance, and if anything allows platforms to keep more right-wing content up than they otherwise would.) Down the...

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Gilad Edelman
Feb 5
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Texas Accuses Google and Facebook of an Illegal Conspiracy

Texas Accuses Google and Facebook of an Illegal Conspiracy

Cinematic Universe. The crossover event of the year is here, and it’s Google/Facebook. A lawsuit by a coalition of state attorneys general, led by Texas’ Ken Paxton, accuses Google of making an “unlawful agreement” that gave Facebook special privileges in exchange for promising not to support a competing ad system. It’s just one of many claims made in a case that takes broad aim at Google’s , but it could very well be the most consequential. The case is a civil suit, and it names only Google as a defendant. But if what Texas is alleging is true, then both companies may have violated federal...

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Gilad Edelman
Dec 16
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The Smoking Gun in the Facebook Antitrust Case

The Smoking Gun in the Facebook Antitrust Case

social network that takes privacy super seriously. By default, your posts are visible only to people in your real-life community. Not only does the company not use tracking cookies, but it promises it never will. It even announces that future changes to the privacy policy will be put to a vote by users before implementation. It’s hard to imagine now, but such a social network once existed. It was called . The company’s journey from privacy-focused startup to mass surveillance platform is at the heart of the long-awaited antitrust case filed today by a group of 46 states, along with the...

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Gilad Edelman
Dec 9
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This GOP Lawmaker Denounced QAnon—and Fears for His Party

This GOP Lawmaker Denounced QAnon—and Fears for His Party

to say they aren’t typical politicians. In the case of Denver Riggleman, a Republican congressman from Virginia, it’s true. A businessman, former Air Force intelligence officer, and expert on , Riggleman has repeatedly refused to bow to party orthodoxy since being elected in 2018, most notably when he officiated a same-sex marriage ceremony last year.More recently, Riggleman has become one of the most outspoken Republican critics of QAnon, the online community organized loosely around the conspiracy theory that Donald Trump is waging a secret war against deep-state pedophiles and satanists....

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Gilad Edelman
Nov 19
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So How Wrong Were the Polls This Year, Really?

So How Wrong Were the Polls This Year, Really?

Day, forecasters predicted a Joe Biden victory, but cautioned that Donald Trump still had a chance. Experts warned that the process of counting mail-in votes could take days or even weeks to finish, and that early vote totals in the Rust Belt states might start off looking heavily pro-Trump but then shift blue as absentee ballots were counted. We heard that Trump planned to on election night and call for ballot counting to halt in states where he was in the lead.On Wednesday afternoon, as I write this column, Biden is on track for a close victory, but Trump still has a chance. The results...

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Gilad Edelman
Nov 4
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Ad Tech Could Be the Next Internet Bubble

Ad Tech Could Be the Next Internet Bubble

an age of manipulation. An extensive network of commercial surveillance tracks our every move and a fair number of our thoughts. That data is fed into sophisticated artificial intelligence and used by advertisers to hit us with just the right sales pitch, at just the right time, to get us to buy a toothbrush or sign up for a meal kit or donate to a campaign. The technique is called behavioral advertising, and it raises the frightening prospect that we’ve been made the subjects of a highly personalized form of mind control. Or maybe that fear is precisely backwards. The real trouble with...

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Gilad Edelman
Oct 5
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Honestly, Just Vote In Person—It’s Safer Than You Think

Honestly, Just Vote In Person—It’s Safer Than You Think

Democrat, Republican, or independent, the introduction of to the United States Postal Service, during a pandemic election expected to shatter records for mail-in voting, is a disturbing threat to American democracy. There is still some debate over whether the service changes imposed by Postmaster General Louis DeJoy, a Trump megadonor, are deliberate electoral sabotage or merely part of a conservative project to the USPS. Either way, the worst-case consequences are the same: a in which thousands or millions of Americans who lawfully vote by mail—and are registered Democrats—are nonetheless...

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Gilad Edelman
Aug 17
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