California bans employers from demanding your password for Email, Twitter, Facebook

From California Governor Jerry Brown:

“Today I am signing Assembly Bill 1844 and Senate Bill 1349, which prohibit universities and employers from demanding your email and social media passwords,” he wrote in a Facebook post. “California pioneered the social media revolution. These laws protect Californians from unwarranted invasions of their social media accounts.”

I didn’t know this was a problem, companies demanding passwords from employees for their email, Twitter, and Facebook accounts. I can’t imagine how this would come up and how I would react. Though, I have heard stories and there are, from c|net, “more than 100 cases currently before the National Labor Relations Board that involve employer workplace policies around social media.”

Good to see this practice banned before it becomes more widespread.

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Los Angeles has second most solar installations in California, behind leader San Diego

Los Angeles ranks second in the state in terms of the number of solar installations on residential, commercial and government buildings, with just over 4,000 projects installed. Los Angles is also second in the state in terms of the total amount of solar electricity generated, measured in capacity, with 36 megawatts.

“The good news is Los Angeles is closing in on San Diego’s lead as America’s #1 solar city,” said Michelle Kinman.

Every megawatt of solar power installed in the Los Angeles area prevents the emission of nearly 700 pounds of smog-forming pollution per year.

A recent report by the Solar Energy Industry Association shows that California is home to over 3,500 solar companies that employ more than 25,000 people.

In the past two years, Los Angeles has nearly tripled the amount of rooftop solar installations. From 1999 through 2009, Los Angeles installed just over 1,000 solar rooftop systems, totaling over 13 MW.

Governor Jerry Brown has called for a significant expansion of California’s rooftop solar market by putting out a vision of installing 12 gigawatts (a gigawatt is 1000 megawatts, or twelve times California’s current solar rooftop market) by 2020.

Los Angeles Unified School District at Richard E. Byrd Middle School in Sun Valley, which recently had a 362 kW solar system on a parking lot shade structure, which will save the District more than $1.6 million over the span of the 20 years and $60,000 in the first year.

via Environment California


Los Angeles is also tops in the state (and country) for water conservation.

The Tao of Moonbeam and the Most Expensive Election Ever

I feel for Meg Whitman. The former candidate for Governor of California spent 141 million dollars of her own money and lost. A loss made even more bitter by how she lost. Old Moonbeam barely announced his candidacy, waiting till what seemed like the last possible moment. Then refusing to raise money or run TV ads until late in the game, even waiting till a month before the election for TV ads. Finally, Moonbeam just grumbled his way to the Governor’s mansion, proudly proclaiming his political-ness, grouchiness, and cheapness.

“In choosing the oldest man ever to run the young state of California, voters decided that a grumpy penny-pincher is just what they need at a time when the state is so broke it cannot fix park benches or investigate burglaries.”

Which I think is awesome! It’s so California. Just when you think it’s going one way the state diverts and heads down a completely new path. It does fit the name, The Tao of Moonbeam, as written by Timothy Egan in the New York Times. Which is a great opinion piece well worth reading.

I guess at this point you may be asking, who the hell is Moonbeam?

It’s Jerry Brown and the name comes from Linda Ronstadt when they were lovers. Apparently the name leaked to the press in 1976 and it has stuck ever since. Back then Jerry Brown was an Obama-like superstar. The young politician was good looking, twice the Governor of California, and often a president candidate.

The popular definition of the name was “young, idealistic, and non-traditional”. A reference that some thought would hurt ‘Governor Moonbeam’, and it probably did hurt his presidential ambitions, but in California it became a point of pride. Especially as the state rose to dominate the country with its economy and culture. The story gets better though as the feud between Jerry, Ronstadt, and the press heats up…for more on this check out, How Jerry Became ‘Governor Moonbeam’, by Jesse McKinley in the New York Times.

I love California!