Since We Last Spoke: Sober Living, Online Harassment, and the Evolution of InTrade - Pacific Standard

Since We Last Spoke: Sober Living, Online Harassment, and the Evolution of InTrade

Updates to past Pacific Standard print stories.
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(Photo: PlusONE/Shutterstock)

(Photo: PlusONE/Shutterstock)

FROM THE ASHES
Last November, in “Death at the Summit,” Graeme Wood recounted the dramatic rise and fall of the event-based, prediction-market company InTrade—and its CEO’s demise at the top of Mt. Everest. At press time, the company was casting about for new direction amid a swirl of regulatory uncertainty. Now, director Ron Bernstein has launched a new company, called Tradesports, that uses the InTrade technology. In April, Bernstein told Bloomberg Businessweek that Tradesports will limit its offerings to the buying and selling of specific kinds of sports predictions. The company aims to take advantage of a 2006 law that exempts certain kinds of sports predictions—like a particular player’s performance at a particular game—from federal restrictions on gambling.

A recent court decision found that a city ordinance effectively singling out sober-living homes for specific regulations was discriminatory toward recovering addicts who qualify as disabled under federal and state laws.

PEER PRESSURE
It was clear from Amanda Hess’ January/February cover story, “Women Aren’t Welcome Here,” that there are few technological solutions for female journalists who are harassed online. But over in the online gaming community, some promising remedies may be emerging. The May issue of Wired reports that Riot Games, publisher of the game League of Legends, has instituted reforms, including a tribunal in which players vote on punishment for peers’ rotten behavior. More than 280,000 censured players have changed their behavior enough to return their gaming profiles to good standing.

LOVE THY ADDICT NEIGHBOR
In her article “Kicking the Habit” in our March/April issue, author Maia Szalavitz noted how addiction continues to be seen by many as a moral failing rather than a disease. That same perception helped spawn a legal battle in the city of Newport Beach, California. A recent court decision found that a city ordinance effectively singling out sober-living homes for specific regulations was discriminatory toward recovering addicts who qualify as disabled under federal and state laws. The city has now hired well-known attorney Ted Olson to appeal the case to the U.S. Supreme Court.

This post originally appeared in the July/August 2014 print issue ofPacific Standardas “Since We Last Spoke.” Subscribe to our bimonthly magazine for more coverage of the science of society.

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