Tag Archives: facebook

Knitting store: no yarn for women’s movement protesters

You might think the pussyhat phenom would be the best thing to happen to a yarn store since the poncho craze of the early 1970s. But the owner of a Tennessee knitting store doesn’t want anyone buying its yarn for arts and crafts for the women’s movement, following weekend protests by marchers in knitted, pointy-eared hats.

Continue reading Knitting store: no yarn for women’s movement protesters

Facebook launches app-based Marketplace shop

Facebook Inc launched Marketplace to allow people to buy and sell items locally as the social media network tries new ways to keep users engaged.

The feature will appear as a “shop” icon at the bottom of the Facebook app and will allow users to list or search for items on sale in their neighborhood.

The company will not facilitate the payment or delivery of items and will not take a cut from any transactions, Facebook said.

The new service will be rolled out in the United States, the UK, Australia and New Zealand for iPhone and Android users over the next few days, the company said in a blog post, adding that the feature will be available on the desktop version in the coming months.

More than 450 million people already visit Facebook groups that have items to buy and sell each month, the company said.

Last year, Facebook said it was testing several ad features that allow users to shop directly through its app, an effort to move further into e-commerce.

Facebook’s shares were little changed at $128.39 in morning trading on Monday on the Nasdaq.

How to …

Post Items for Sale in Just a Few Steps

Selling an item in Marketplace is just as easy as browsing for one. Simply:

Take a photo of your item, or add it from your camera roll

Enter a product name, description and price

Confirm your location and select a category

Post

 

Starbucks, Amazon pay less taxes in Austria than sausage stand

Multinationals like coffee chain Starbucks and online retailer Amazon pay fewer taxes in Austria than one of the country’s tiny sausage stands, the republic’s center-left chancellor lamented in a recent interview published.

Chancellor Christian Kern, head of the Social Democrats and of the centrist coalition government, also criticized internet giants Google and Facebook, saying that if they paid more tax subsidies for print media could increase.

“Every Viennese cafe, every sausage stand pays more tax in Austria than a multinational corporation,” Kern was quoted as saying in an interview with newspaper Der Standard, invoking two potent symbols of the Austrian capital’s food culture.

“That goes for Starbucks, Amazon and other companies,” he said, praising the European Commission’s ruling this week that Apple should pay up to 13 billion euros ($14.5 billion) in taxes plus interest to Ireland because a special scheme to route profits through that country was illegal state aid.

Apple has said it will appeal the ruling, which Chief Executive Tim Cook described as “total political crap.” Google, Facebook and other multinational companies say they follow all tax rules.

Kern criticized EU states with low-tax regimes that have lured multinationals – and come under scrutiny from Brussels.

“What Ireland, the Netherlands, Luxembourg or Malta are doing here lacks solidarity towards the rest of the European economy,” he said.

He stopped short of saying that Facebook and Google would have to pay more tax but underlined their significant sales in Austria, which he estimated at more than 100 million euros each, and their relatively small numbers of employees – a “good dozen” for Google and “allegedly even fewer” for Facebook.

“They massively suck up the advertising volume that comes out of the economy but pay neither corporation tax nor advertising duty in Austria,” said Kern, who became chancellor in May.

($1 = 0.8965 euros)

Racism and talk of religious war: Trump staff’s online posts

Donald Trump’s paid campaign staffers have declared on their personal social media accounts that Muslims are unfit to be American citizens, ridiculed Mexican accents, called for Secretary of State John Kerry’s death by hanging and stated their readiness for a possible civil war, according to a review of their postings by The Associated Press.

The AP examined the social media and backgrounds of current and former campaign staffers who helped propel Trump through the primary elections. Most come across as dedicated, enthusiastic partisans, but at least seven expressed views that were overtly racially charged, supportive of violent actions or broadly hostile to Muslims.

A graphic designer for Trump’s advance team approvingly posted video of a black man eating fried chicken and criticizing fellow blacks for ignorance, irresponsibility and having too many children.

A Trump field organizer in Virginia declared that Muslims were seeking to impose Sharia law in America and that “those who understand Islam for what it is are gearing up for the fight.”

The AP’s findings come at a time when Trump is showing interest in appealing to minority voters, insisting he will be fair in dealing with the 11 million people living in the U.S. without legal documents and explicitly pitching himself to African-Americans, saying “what do you have to lose?”

The AP also reviewed the public social media accounts of more than three dozen employees of Hillary Clinton’s far larger campaign staff and found nothing as inflammatory. One staffer said Trump’s style of speaking reminded him of a roommate who had taken too many hallucinogenic mushrooms.

AP also reviewed images attached to more than 19,000 stolen internal emails from the Democratic National Committee for racially or religiously inflammatory memes, finding nothing of note.

Earlier this summer, the AP sent written questions to the Trump campaign with examples of the posts. The campaign has not commented, despite several requests since.

Veteran Republican campaign operatives said keeping an eye on staffers’ social media postings has long been a standard practice.

Beth Myers, a Mitt Romney aide in his 2008 and 2012 campaigns, said she stressed to employees that what they said and did, both inside and outside of social media, would reflect on the candidate who employed them. “Don’t put anything in an email that you wouldn’t want on the front page of The New York Times,” she recalled telling staff. “The same thing I told my kids, I told my staffers.”

Myers was not commenting on any campaign specifically.

The AP found little questionable content in the ranks of Trump’s top officials.

State-level organizers, however, posted jokes and criticism about race and religion.

Before being tapped in November as statewide director of coalitions, Craig Bachler of Bradenton, Florida, had posted jokes about Mexican accents superimposed over pictures of an overweight man wearing a sombrero. There is no record Bachler was paid for his work.

After an AP reporter inquired about his posts, some material was removed from his account and a reporter’s access was blocked.

Some posts demonstrated a fixation with black-on-white violence with claims that news of such crimes was being suppressed.

“How about this little white boy being murdered by a black man,” grassroots organizer Annie Marie Delgado of Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, wrote in December 2014. Delgado also shared a discredited fake photo of Kerry and Jane Fonda along with her own comment: “I say hang them!” She was paid $11,146 through April, according to campaign records.

Delgado told the AP she did not recall posting some of the items and would not have posted others if she had reviewed their content more closely.

Fear or dislike of Muslims was a recurring theme among some employees’ personal accounts.

On Facebook, Mark Kevin Lloyd of Lynchburg, Virginia, who has been paid $36,000 as Trump’s field director in the state, shared a post June 30 calling Islam “a barbaric cult.” He shared a meme June 16, four days after the Orlando nightclub mass shooting by a Muslim pledging allegiance to the Islamic State, saying people should be forced to eat bacon before they can purchase firearms.

Lloyd declined to talk to the AP without the Trump campaign’s permission, citing his nondisclosure agreement with the campaign.

During her time with the campaign, Delgado deplored the appointment of a Muslim-American judge in New York.

“Step by step … this is how American culture will end,” she wrote Feb. 27, expressing confidence the judge would impose Sharia law.

Scott Barrish, who earned $12,250 as Trump’s political director for the Tampa Bay, Florida region, took his views beyond social media posts. In 2011, he drew local press coverage for writing to the head of the Council on American-Islamic Relations saying he was wise to its plans to establish a totalitarian theocracy in the United states.

“This is us vs. you,” wrote Barrish. “In the great words of the late President Ronald Reagan, ‘I win, you lose!””

Separately, Barrish tweeted in 2013 that he hoped America wasn’t headed for civil war, but “if our freedoms must be defended against a tyrannical government, so be it.”

“Those comments at that time were made by me and were my own personal view,” Barrish said in a brief interview with AP. He said he stopped working for Trump’s campaign after the Florida primary. “I don’t want to detract anything from the campaign.”

Millions view Facebook video showing aftermath of officer-involved shooting

A live, 10-minute video of the aftermath of a police officer shooting a black man in Minnesota was the latest example of the riveting power of video streaming and the complex ethical and policy issues it raises for Facebook Live and similar features.

The graphic video taken by the victim’s girlfriend and broadcast on her Facebook page shows Philando Castile covered in blood in the driver’s seat of a car as the officer points a gun into the vehicle.

By early July 7, the footage had more than 4 million views and together with another police shooting in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, topped the items on Facebook’s Newswire, which promotes stories of broad interest.

Facebook this year has made its Live feature, which allows anyone to broadcast a video directly from their smartphone, a central component of its growth strategy. Rivals Twitter and Alphabet’s YouTube are also pushing live video as a new frontier in Internet content.

While traditional TV broadcasters are subject to “decency” standards overseen by the Federal Communications Commission — and have a short delay in their broadcasts to allow them to cut away from violent or obscene images — internet streaming services have no such limitations.

That easy accessibility and openness are fostering a new type of intimate, personal broadcasting that proponents said can be extraordinarily powerful, as evidenced by the demonstrations that began shortly after the Minneapolis video.

But critics said the lack of regulation can allow a somewhat cynical exploitation of tragedy.

Facebook and others can “rush forward and do whatever they think will get them clicks and users” without concerns for potential legal consequences, said Mary Anne Franks, a law professor at the University of Miami who helps run the Cyber Civil Rights Initiative. She advocates on behalf of revenge porn victims and would like companies to do more to prevent dissemination of such content.

Indeed, internet companies enjoy broad protections under federal law for content users posting on their services. Merely hosting third-party content that is objectionable or even illegal does not expose those companies to litigation as long as they adopt reasonable takedown policies.

The companies do enforce their own terms of service, which restrict many types of images. They rely heavily on users to report violations, which are then reviewed by employees or contractors for possible removal.

POLITICAL PRESSURE

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, head of the Los Angeles-based nonprofit Simon Wiesenthal Center’s Digital Terrorism and Hate project, said live video provides unprecedented opportunity to seize public awareness and cultivate political pressure on a topic such as police brutality.

But Cooper said the technology also raises concerns. “The availability of a live broadcast, unencumbered, becomes a horrendous tool in the hands of a terrorist.”

Facebook said last month that it was expanding the team dedicated to reviewing live content and staffing it 24 hours a day. The company would also test the monitoring of broadcasts that go viral or are trending even before they are reported, giving Facebook a way to stop offending broadcasts quickly, just as a TV network might do.

In the July 6 shooting in Falcon Heights, a suburb of St. Paul, Minnesota, the footage was taken offline for about an hour, leading to outrage on social media. It was then restored with a warning labeling it as “disturbing.”

“We’re very sorry that the video was temporarily inaccessible,” a Facebook spokeswoman said in a statement. “It was down due to a technical glitch and restored as soon as we were able to investigate.”

Details of the technical glitch were not immediately known.

Facebook’s push into live streaming assures that such violent or otherwise disturbing events would not be the last.

About 1.65 billion people used Facebook monthly as of March 31, spending at least 50 minutes per day on the social media platform. In Facebook’s most recent quarterly earnings, it reported a 50 percent surge in revenue, handily beating Wall Street expectations as its promotion of live video won new advertisers and encouraged existing ones to increase spending.

Facebook pays some companies, including Reuters, to produce content for Facebook Live.

The Minnesota shooting followed other violent events that were streamed live on the Internet and went viral.

Just last month, a 28-year-old Chicago man, Antonio Perkins, filmed himself on Facebook Live spending time with his friends outside when shots rang out. The graphic video showed Perkins falling to the ground and what appears to be blood on the grass.

Days earlier, there was a double homicide in France in which the killer later took to Facebook Live to encourage more violence in a 12-minute clip.

In April, an 18-year-old woman was charged after she live streamed her friend’s rape on Twitter’s Periscope. In May, a young woman in France recorded herself on Periscope as she threw herself under a train.

 

 

Man charged with randomly killing six people in Kalamazoo described as ‘family man’

A An alleged gunman who seemed to choose his victims at random opened fire outside an apartment complex, a car dealership and a restaurant in Michigan, killing six people in a rampage that lasted nearly seven hours, police said.

Authorities identified the shooter as Jason Dalton, a 45-year-old Uber driver and former insurance adjuster who police said had no criminal record. They could not say what motivated him to target victims with no apparent connection to him or to each other in the Saturday night shootings.

“How do you go and tell the families of these victims that they weren’t targeted for any reason other than they were there to be a target?” Kalamazoo County Prosecutor Jeff Getting said Sunday at a news conference.

Dalton, who was arrested in Kalamazoo following a massive manhunt, was expected to be arraigned Monday on murder charges.

Kalamazoo County Undersheriff Paul Matyas described a terrifying series of attacks that began about 6 p.m. Saturday outside the Meadows apartment complex on the eastern edge of Kalamazoo County, where a woman was shot multiple times. She was expected to survive.

A little more than four hours later and 15 miles away, a father and his 17-year-old son were fatally shot while looking at cars at the dealership.

Fifteen minutes after that, five people were gunned down in the parking lot of a Cracker Barrel restaurant, Matyas said. Four of them died.

“These are random murders,” Matyas said.

Between shootings, Dalton apparently took fares through Uber.  One man told 24 hour news 8 that he and his family ordered an Uber and rode with Dalton after the Cracker Barrel shooting and not long before Dalton’s arrest. Although they said nothing alarming happened during their rides, some apparent Uber passengers have posted on Facebook that they were in Dalton’s vehicle when he was driving very erratically just before the shootings. Allegedly, he was involved in a sideswipe hit-and-run crash and ran at least one stop sign.

A spokeswoman for Uber confirmed that Dalton had driven for the company in the past, but she declined to say whether he was driving Saturday night.

Uber prohibits both passengers and drivers from possessing guns of any kind in a vehicle. Anyone found to be in violation of the policy may be prohibited from using or driving for the service.

Dalton was arrested without incident about 12:40 a.m. Sunday after a deputy spotted his vehicle driving through downtown Kalamazoo after leaving a bar parking lot, authorities said.

Matyas declined to disclose anything found in the vehicle except for a semi-automatic handgun.

A man who knows Dalton said he was a married father of two who never showed any signs of violence.  Dalton lived with his wife and two kids in a small ranch-style house in a rural area of Michigan.

Gary Pardo Jr., whose parents live across the street from Dalton in Kalamazoo Township, described him as a family man who seemed fixated on cars and often worked on them. 

“He would go a month without mowing his lawn but was very meticulous with his cars,” Pardo said, explaining that Dalton, at times, owned a Chevrolet Camaro and two Hummer SUVs.

Progressive Insurance confirmed that he once worked for the company before leaving in 2011.

Dalton was an insurance adjuster who did auto-body estimates and once taught an auto-body repair class at an area community college, said James Block, who has lived next door to him for 17 years.

“He loved to do things outside with his kids” like taking them for rides on his lawn tractor, Block said.

Neighbors told the the Detroit Free Press that Dalton “liked guns,” and another news source reported that he caught authorities’ attention in the past for shooting guns out of his home’s backdoor.

His wife and children were unhurt, authorities said.

The suspect was in contact with more than one person during the rampage, authorities said, but they would not elaborate. Prosecutors said they did not expect to charge anyone else.

Authorities were interviewing Dalton and reviewing his phone. They did not know if the handgun belonged to him, Getting said.

“This is every community’s nightmare — when you have someone going around just randomly killing people, no rhyme, no reason,” Getting said.

Tammy George said the woman who was shot outside the apartment building is her next-door neighbor. She and her family heard the gunfire, ran outside and saw the woman on the ground.

Four bullets flew into a closet of George’s home, she said. Her son, James, was playing video games with two friends a few feet away from where the bullets pierced the wall.

“I checked out the back window and saw a car speeding off,” said James George, 17.

On Sunday morning, Tammy George came outside to clean the parking lot.

“I was worried about the kids coming out and seeing their mom’s blood,” she said. “I cleaned it up. No kid should have to come out and see their parent’s blood on the ground.”

During a Sunday morning news conference, some law enforcement officials wiped teary eyes or got choked up. When the news conference ended, Kalamazoo Mayor Bobby Hopewell and Department of Public Safety Chief Jeff Hadley embraced.

The four people killed outside the restaurant were identified as 62-year-old Mary Lou Nye of Baroda and 60-year-old Mary Jo Nye, 68-year-old Barbara Hawthorne and 74-year-old Dorothy Brown, all of Battle Creek.

The two victims killed at the car dealership were identified as Tyler Smith and his father, Richard, who was 53.

A 14-year-old girl wounded at the restaurant was hospitalized in critical condition.

Late Sunday night, mourners streamed into a Kalamazoo church for a prayer service intended to honor the victims and help residents cope.

With a population of about 75,000, Kalamazoo is about 160 miles west of Detroit. It is home to Western Michigan University and the headquarters of popular craft beer maker Bell’s Brewery. The city also is known for the anonymously funded Kalamazoo Promise program, which has paid college tuition of students who graduate from Kalamazoo Public Schools for more than a decade.

Associated Press writers Mike Householder and Tom Krisher in Kalamazoo, Don Babwin in Chicago and WiG contributed to this report.


Baldwin calls for social media background checks in screening process

U.S. Sen. Tammy Baldwin joined more than 20 Senate Democrats in urging Department of Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson and the agency to require social media background checks be a part of the screening process for all foreigners seeking an American visa.

The Senate Democrats also requested more information from the department on the existing screening process, such as if the agency faces any resource barriers to implementing these background checks, to ensure the process is as rigorous and comprehensive as possible.

The letter, signed by 22 Senate Democrats, follows reports that the female assailant in the San Bernardino terrorist attack may have expressed radical jihadis sentiments on social media platforms before her fiancé — the male attacker and a U.S. Citizen — ‎applied for a K-1 fiancé visa on her behalf.

Here’s the letter by Senate Democrats to the Johnson:

We write to express our deep concern regarding reports that critical background information of individuals participating in American visa programs has been largely omitted from the visa security screening process. 

According to recent reports, the female assailant involved in the San Bernardino terrorist attack may have expressed radical jihadist sentiments on social media platforms before her U.S. citizen fiancé, the male attacker, ‎applied for a K-1 fiancé visa on her behalf. Media reports have also indicated that Department of Homeland Security officials are able to conduct social media background checks as a part of certain immigration programs, but are doing so inconsistently. We believe these checks, focused on possible connections to terrorist activity, should be incorporated into DHS’s vetting process for visa determinations, and that this policy should be implemented as soon as possible. 

Therefore, we request that you provide the following information so that we may work with you to implement a more rigorous screening process:

Do you plan to integrate social media background checks into the screening process for all visas?

Do you face resource and/or technical barriers to ‎implementing these background checks? If so, please describe them.

Does the Administration conduct social media background checks in any of the existing screening processes for visa programs? If so, please describe how they are conducted.

Ensuring that the screening processes for our nation’s visa programs are rigorous and comprehensive must be a top priority, as these programs are critical to our security, our economy, and for our bilateral relationships with nations around the world. 

We look forward to working with you to establish a more robust social media background check process for all visitors and immigrants to the United States.

Disabled Chihuahua named G.I. Joe inspires others with his positive spirit

“This dog has inspired so many people,” Alison Smith of Mandan, one of his rescuers, told the Minot (North Dakota) Daily News. “We have people all over the place I don’t know who they are that are following his story. We have people who are also in wheelchairs or are paralyzed or are fighting illness or cancer. … They are bonding with this dog, and that’s giving them inspiration to battle their own issues.”

G.I. Joe is making connections through his own Facebook page at GI Joe’s Journey. Within a month of establishing the site, G.I. Joe had nearly 1,000 followers, from both near and as far away as New Zealand.

More than a cute face, G.I. Joe has a story that’s compelling.

Amber Runyon of Minot encountered the dog, dirty and scared, about six weeks ago while taking photos of a Minot house for a property management company for which she works.

“When I saw the condition of his back legs, my heart fainted. I wanted to cry,” she said.

G.I. Joe had been the victim of a vehicle accident about a year and a half earlier. The incident left him numb and paralyzed from his shoulders down. He no longer had bladder or bowel control. Because he could only get around by dragging himself, he had worn his back legs to stumps, which were badly infected.

A member of Triple H Miniature Horse Rescue near Mandan, Runyon texted Smith, the organization’s director, to ask what she should do. Smith suggested she attempt to obtain the dog from the owner, which proved to be as simple as making the request.

The dog’s original owner had felt his injury was so severe that the best option was to put him to death. The second owner, from whom Runyon acquired the dog, had disagreed and had taken the dog in to save its life. However, the level of care the dog required overwhelmed him.

Smith took the dog into her care when local animal welfare services weren’t able to assist. Triple H has rescued more than 500 horses since 2007, along with everything from rabbits to goats on occasion. Taking in dogs is unusual and only occurs when no other options are available.

Smith took G.I. Joe to a veterinarian, who prescribed medicine for the infection and showed her how to express the dog’s bladder and bowels four times a day. G.I. Joe also wears a belly band for leaks. He receives monthly veterinarian checkups, particularly because of the risk of urinary infections. His bedding must be washed daily.

A veterinarian estimated the dog’s age at 2-4 years.

“He’s not completely healed, but nearly, and really is doing well,” Smith said last week. “He’s happy and gets around really well.”

He’s also stolen a lot of hearts, she added.

Smith initially began posting information about G.I. Joe on Triple H Miniature Horse Rescue’s Facebook page. The rescue organization’s primary focus, though, is miniature horses so the audience of the page was not attuned to dogs. Smith decided to set G.I. Joe up with his own Facebook page. Each day, there is a new encouraging quote posted to the page, along with other thoughtful or humorous quips from Joe.

Smith said people have been asking for a G.I. Joe calendar so she took photos and plans to produce one.

“I don’t know what it is, but for whatever the reason, people are just mad about him,” Smith said.

One follower who uses a wheelchair comments she wishes she could do what G.I. Joe is able to do, Smith said. When the rescue organization announced it was starting hydro-therapy with G.I. Joe, a follower sent him a life jacket. “People want to help with his recovery,” Smith said.

G.I. Joe’s joyful, living-life-in-full-force energy in his home videos may have something to do with that.

It wasn’t always that way, though.

When G.I. Joe first arrived at Triple H, he was so defensive that it was difficult for rescuers to safely remove him from the kennel. Smith said they still are cautious in introducing him to strangers, but he has warmed up completely to those he knows.

“He’s kind of coming out of his shell,” Smith said. “He’s a little love bug.”

Runyon agreed that G.I. Joe isn’t the same dog she found in a Minot neighborhood.

“You can just see the transformation. It’s amazing,” Runyon said.

G.I. Joe now wears a “drag bag,” which enables him to be mobile without injuring himself from the friction. He was gifted a “wheelchair” by a woman who had it for her dog before it died. His wheels let him take walks outdoors and run with his buddy, Roy, another small dog at Triple H. who, according to G.I. Joe on his Facebook page, “Accepts me as I am. Always look for THAT guy and also … BE THAT guy! Makes life so nice.”

“When he’s hooked up to the wheelchair, he can run as fast as any other dog,” Smith said. “He is not slowed down a lot due to his injury or his handicap and just loves playing like every other dog. He loves to go in the car. He’s very attached to his humans now.”

Smith said G.I. Joe is likely to remain at the rescue ranch for the remainder of his life. Because of the amount of care he requires, he’s not considered suitable for adoption.

Smith said she’s grateful that Runyon saw him that day in Minot and she thanks the owner who gave him up for doing the right thing for G.I. Joe.

Runyon said the thanks goes to Smith for the immense effort she gives to helping G.I. Joe. The dog is alive because of people like his second Minot owner and Smith, who took the steps to save his life, she said.

“I do think that G.I. Joe has a guardian angel, with people coming in at the right time to save him,” Runyon said.

G.I. Joe thanks his adoring public.

“Thanks for all your support,” reads a recent post on his Facebook page. “I want to share my journey with everyone to help give others hope and encouragement. I will continue to share even after I heal, as every day is a challenge with no feet and no feeling from your shoulders down. I will grow with you and we can learn from each other. I am learning to be less defensive but I have a long way to go. That’s ok though, as I plan on being around a long time.”

This is an AP member exchange story from the Minot Daily News 

“He’s not completely healed, but nearly, and really is doing well,” Smith said last week. “He’s happy and gets around really well.”

He’s also stolen a lot of hearts, she added.

Smith initially began posting information about G.I. Joe on Triple H Miniature Horse Rescue’s Facebook page. The rescue organization’s primary focus, though, is miniature horses so the audience of the page was not attuned to dogs. Smith decided to set G.I. Joe up with his own Facebook page. Each day, there is a new encouraging quote posted to the page, along with other thoughtful or humorous quips from Joe.

Smith said people have been asking for a G.I. Joe calendar so she took photos and plans to produce one.

“I don’t know what it is, but for whatever the reason, people are just mad about him,” Smith said.

One follower who uses a wheelchair comments she wishes she could do what G.I. Joe is able to do, Smith said. When the rescue organization announced it was starting hydro-therapy with G.I. Joe, a follower sent him a life jacket. “People want to help with his recovery,” Smith said.

G.I. Joe’s joyful, living-life-in-full-force energy in his home videos may have something to do with that.

It wasn’t always that way, though.

When G.I. Joe first arrived at Triple H, he was so defensive that it was difficult for rescuers to safely remove him from the kennel. Smith said they still are cautious in introducing him to strangers, but he has warmed up completely to those he knows.

“He’s kind of coming out of his shell,” Smith said. “He’s a little love bug.”

Runyon agreed that G.I. Joe isn’t the same dog she found in a Minot neighborhood.

“You can just see the transformation. It’s amazing,” Runyon said.

G.I. Joe now wears a “drag bag,” which enables him to be mobile without injuring himself from the friction. He was gifted a “wheelchair” by a woman who had it for her dog before it died. His wheels let him take walks outdoors and run with his buddy, Roy, another small dog at Triple H. who, according to G.I. Joe on his Facebook page, “Accepts me as I am. Always look for THAT guy and also … BE THAT guy! Makes life so nice.”

“When he’s hooked up to the wheelchair, he can run as fast as any other dog,” Smith said. “He is not slowed down a lot due to his injury or his handicap and just loves playing like every other dog. He loves to go in the car. He’s very attached to his humans now.”

Smith said G.I. Joe is likely to remain at the rescue ranch for the remainder of his life. Because of the amount of care he requires, he’s not considered suitable for adoption.

Smith said she’s grateful that Runyon saw him that day in Minot and she thanks the owner who gave him up for doing the right thing for G.I. Joe.

Runyon said the thanks goes to Smith for the immense effort she gives to helping G.I. Joe. The dog is alive because of people like his second Minot owner and Smith, who took the steps to save his life, she said.

“I do think that G.I. Joe has a guardian angel, with people coming in at the right time to save him,” Runyon said.

G.I. Joe thanks his adoring public.

“Thanks for all your support,” reads a recent post on his Facebook page. “I want to share my journey with everyone to help give others hope and encouragement. I will continue to share even after I heal, as every day is a challenge with no feet and no feeling from your shoulders down. I will grow with you and we can learn from each other. I am learning to be less defensive but I have a long way to go. That’s ok though, as I plan on being around a long time.”

This is an AP member exchange story from the Minot Daily News at http://www.minotdailynews.com

The 2016 candidates and their Twitter follows

Jeb Bush follows Donald Trump on Twitter but that’s a one-way street: Trump mainly follows people with a connection to himself. Ted Cruz’s follow list is a big tea party, though he keeps an eye on President Barack Obama, too.

Marco Rubio seems open to following everyone under the sun — Democrats, fellow Republicans, insiders of every type and an odd assortment of outliers who offer advice on body-piercing, playing craps and getting out of debt.

Using Twitter to get a message out is now a must-do for presidential candidates, but looking at the accounts they follow can be instructive, too.

Their follow list can reflect not only their personality and interests, but sometimes their strategy. In Rubio’s case, it seems to reflect a bit of a problem with spam, too.

Overall, their choices reflect an interest in people who think like they do. Few Republicans or Democrats want to follow what people on the other side say. And most — Democrats Hillary Rodham Clinton and Bernie Sanders among them — don’t follow most or any of their party rivals.

Some candidates rely on hired help to tend their social media affairs, especially those with lots of money and staff, so it’s not always clear who’s doing the tweeting or the following.

Trump, though, is known to spend the wee hours lobbing rhetorical bombs on Twitter. Cruz, said spokesman Rick Tyler, “does follow Twitter virtually all day long between events.” John Kasich has orderly lists of Ohio political and media groups, like a clothes closet organized by style and color. A flood of first-person tweets from others, too, suggests a personal interest in the platform; Jeb Bush, for example, has been tweeting about policy and family since long before his campaign.

A recent snapshot of whom the leading presidential candidates are following on Twitter, listed in order of who has the most Twitter followers:

Hillary Rodham Clinton @HillaryClinton

Followers: 4.38 million

Following: 290

Last account followed:  Singer Marc Anthony @MarcAnthony.

Whom she follows: Until a few weeks ago, Clinton almost exclusively followed campaign-related accounts and staff. Since then, she’s expanded her follow list and added several new celebrities. 

Whom she doesn’t follow: Her Democratic rivals, reporters or media accounts.

Notable: Actor Tom Hanks @tomhanks, singer Katy Perry @katyperrry, singer Mariah Carey @MariahCary, comedian Amy Schumer @amyschumer.

Donald Trump @realDonaldTrump

Followers: 4.35million

Following: 44

Last account followed: Katrina Campins @KatrinaCampins, who appeared on the first season of “The Apprentice” with Donald Trump.

Whom he follows: Nearly half are accounts linked to Trump properties and companies. Many of the rest are national news figures or celebrities.

Whom he doesn’t follow: His opponents in the presidential campaign, Fox newswoman Megyn Kelly.

Notables: Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler @IamStevenT, NBA Hall of Famer Magic Johnson @MagicJohnson, World Golf Hall of Famer Gary Player @garyplayer.

Marco Rubio @marcorubio

Followers: 886,000

Following: 2,554

Last account followed: Ethan Demme @EthanDemme, CEO of a company that provides material for homeschool parents.

Whom he follows: Just about anybody and anything. Democrats, Republicans, Libertarians, tea partyers, business leaders, Florida capital insiders, and a how-to-quit-smoking account.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Jeb Bush, his political mentor and 2016 rival.

Notables: Philadelphia Eagles cornerback Nolan Carroll @CarrollCity, Miami Dolphins running back Jonas Gray @jgray_ND25.

Rand Paul @RandPaul

Followers: 693,000

Following: 393

Last account followed:  Elizabeth Landers @ElizLanders, a CNN producer.

Whom he follows: Republican politicians and strategists, very heavy list of news organizations and national reporters. Unlike most of the GOP candidates, he follows President Barack Obama.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Jeb Bush.

Notables: Actors James Woods @RealJamesWoods, Kevin Spacey @KevinSpacy and John Cusack @John Cusack.

Ben Carson @RealBenCarson

Followers: 700,000

Following: 48

Last account followed: Budding Nihilist @JGreenDC, Independent Journal editor.

Whom he follows: A mix of conservative news and political accounts and veterans and Christian accounts.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Republican presidential rivals, other than Ted Cruz and Rand Paul.

Notables: Former NFL coach Tony Dungy @TonyDungy, boxer Evander Holyfield @holyfield, Chip Gaines @chippergaines of HGTV’s “Fixer Upper.”

Ted Cruz @tedcruz

Followers: 518,000

Following: 13,840

Last account followed: Lauren Beieler @laurenbeeliner, whose profile reads, “I heart Jesus. Plain and simple. and i like cheese. A lot.”

Whom he follows: Lots and lots of people who have one or more of the following as a profile or background photo: an American flag, a Confederate flag, a Don’t Tread on Me Flag or a bald eagle.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Nonconservatives, except President Barack Obama — a rare exception.

Notables: Old Southern Moonshine Revival @OSMRmusic, Classic Rock Lyrics @RockWsdm.

Carly Fiorina @CarlyFiorina

Followers: 579,000

Following: 689

Last account followed: American Airlines @AmericanAir

Whom she follows: A lot of Iowa Republican groups, politician and media. California tech industry.

Whom she doesn’t follow: Republican presidential candidates.

Notables: Los Angeles Lakers @Lakers, Maria Shriver @MariaShriver, BOTeleprompter @BOTeleprompter, a parody account that pretends to be President Barack Obama’s Teleprompter.

Bernie Sanders @BernieSanders

Followers: 616,000

Following: 1,281

Last account followed: Lauren Dezenski @LaurenDezenski, reporter.

Whom he follows: News media, celebrities, labor unions.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Democratic rival Hillary Rodham Clinton and politicians in general.

Notables: Movie director Spike Lee @SpikeLee, actress Rashida Jones @iamrashidajones, Go-Go’s lead singer Belinda Carlisle @belindaofficial.

Mike Huckabee @GovMikeHuckabee

Followers: 411,000

Following: 495

Last account followed: Katie Couric @katiecouric

Whom he follows: Christians, flat tax supporters, 2016 rivals Marco Rubio, Rand Paul, John Kasich, Bobby Jindal

Whom he doesn’t follow: 2016 rivals Jeb Bush, Donald Trump, Rick Perry, Carly Fiorina, Ted Cruz, Chris Christie, Ben Carson, Rick Santorum

Notables: Arnold Schwarzenegger @Schwarzenegger, Bill Clinton @billclinton, Actor and veterans advocate Gary Sinise @GarySinise.

Jeb Bush @JebBush

Followers: 325,000

Following: 193

Last account followed: South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson @AGAlanWilson.

Whom he follows: Florida and national Republican politicians, many of his opponents for president. Many of the Bush clan, including his father.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Democrats.

Notables: Rapper Pitbull @pitbull, Pope Francis @Pontifex, golfer Greg Norman @SharkGregNorman.

John Kasich @JohnKasich

Followers: 111,000

Following: 9,703

Last account followed: Joe Sullivan @JoeSully4 Harvard University director of men’s basketball operation.

Whom he follows: Seemingly every Republican member of Congress, Republican clubs from coast to coast, and many people who declare support for his Republican opponents in their background photo.

Whom he doesn’t follow: Democrats, except @HillaryClinton; rival Donald Trump.

Notables: Boxer Evander Holyfield @holyfield, “Tonight Show” host Jimmy Fallon @jimmyfallon.

Chris Christie @ChrisChristie

Followers: 55,381

Following: 175

Last follow: The Daily Show @TheDailyShow

Whom he follows: Heavy mix of Republican politicians, news media and sports and music figures.

Whom he doesn’t follow: His opponents in the presidential campaign.

Notables: Musicians Stevie Van Zandt @StevieVanZandt and Bruno Mars @BrunoMars, broadcaster Howard Stern @HowardStern, basketball player LeBron James @KingJames, Dallas Cowboys @dallascowboys.