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Florida man sues after Samsung Galaxy Note 7 explodes in pocket

A 28-year-old man whose Galaxy Note7 exploded in his pocket while at work in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, this month has filed a lawsuit against Samsung, according to his lawyer.

>> Read more trending stories

Keith Pierro, a partner with Gold and Gold Law based in Boca Raton and Miami, said his client, Jonathan Strobel, suffered severe and "deep second-degree burns" on his right thigh and thumb when the phone exploded. He said hours after the incident, Strobel received an email from Samsung telling him to turn in his phone because of issues with the device overheating.

The lawsuit — which Pierro thinks is one of the first in the country — requests $15,000 in compensatory damages and was filed Friday morning.

"Samsung is a big corporation and they control the information that's put out. They obviously knew what was wrong (with the phone)," he said. "Unfortunately for Mr. Strobel, it was too late for the mandatory recall."

>> Related: CPSC says you should stop using the Samsung Galaxy Note 7

Samsung issued a voluntary exchange of the smartphone on Sept. 2 following reports of some batteries overheating and catching fire. Soon after, the company issued an unprecedented recall saying all owners of the phone must shut down the device because they "can overheat and pose a safety risk." In addition, the Federal Aviation Administration issued a warning asking airplane passengers to not use or charge their Galaxy Note7 devices on planes.

On the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission website, officials cite 92 reported cases of the Samsung phone overheating. Of those incidents, there were 26 reported burns and 55 cases of property damage including "fires in cars and a garage."

On Sept. 9, Strobel was working at Costco at 3250 Northlake Boulevard in Palm Beach Gardens when the phone he placed in his right pocket exploded, according to the complaint. Pierro said when Strobel realized what was happening, he attempted to remove the phone from his pocket and burned his thumb in the process. Soon after, he was able to take his pants off and be treated. Palm Beach Gardens Fire Rescue previously told The Palm Beach Post the phone appeared to have melted inside his pants.

>> Related: Samsung Note 7 recalled over exploding batteries

Strobel was one of dozens of Galaxy Note7 device owners who have had their phones catch fire in recent days, and he's not the only one in Florida.

On Sept. 8, a man's Jeep caught fire in St. Petersburg as he charged the phone in the vehicle. He told investigators he went inside to drop some things off and when he walked outside, his car was in flames. Less than a week later, Port St. Lucie Police responded to a car fire where the driver told investigators he had been charging his Galaxy Note7 before the fire began on Sept. 13

Pierro said when Strobel first told him about the incident, he thought the injuries wouldn't be terrible.

"This can't be as bad as it sounds … Then I saw the injury," he said. "He's in the healing process, but it's going to be a long road."

Messages left with Strobel were not returned Saturday. On his Facebook page, Strobel's profile picture is an Apple logo with the text: "The new iPhone7: It doesn't explode."

You can now block 'inappropriate' comments on Instagram

A new update to image-focused social media network Instagram allows users to block "inappropriate comments" with a feature that is being referred to as a "keyword moderation tool."

>> Read more trending stories  

Instagram CEO and co-founder Kevin Systrom announced the addition in a blog post Monday, saying that he and co-founder Mike Krieger "want to work diligently to maintain what has kept Instagram positive and safe, especially in the comments on your photos and videos."

"The beauty of the Instagram community is the diversity of its members," Systrom wrote. "All different types of people from diverse backgrounds, races, genders, sexual orientations, abilities and more call Instagram home, but sometimes the comments on their posts can be unkind."

The new tool allows users to block certain content by filtering comments that appear on photos by entering keywords they find offensive or inappropriate.

Comments with those words will be hidden from users' posts. Those comments won't be deleted from the platform, and others who don't record the same words as inappropriate will still see them.

Users can enter specific words by clicking the gear at the top right hand corner of their profile page, clicking "Comments" and then turning on the "Hide Inappropriate Comments" gear. Users who turn the gear on but don't enter specific words will not see "default words" provided by Instagram.

Users can also already swipe to report and delete comments and can block accounts.

Systrom said that he is committed to "(working) towards keeping Instagram a safe place for self-expression" and to "keep building features that safeguard the community and maintain what makes Instagram a positive and creative place for everyone."

Apple customers complain about iPhone 'touch disease'

Many Apple customers are reporting problems with their iPhones, saying the new 6 and 6 Plus models have what's being called "touch disease."

It happens when the screen freezes up and you can't reboot the phone, rendering the device useless.

Eric Lindstrom practically runs his entire business on his iPhone 6 Plus. He's a social media manager for several clients.

>> Read more trending stories  

"Approximately 10 months ago my touchscreen started acting very strange, totally unresponsive," he said. "And I'm getting the flicker now too, which is another evidence of the problem. The phone just starts to flash a white bar."

WSOC Action 9 found similar complaints all over social media.

Some customers are even suing Apple over it, accusing the company of fraud. They said the phones have a defect and that Apple knew about it.

Apparently, Apple designed earlier iPhones differently, but the company changed the design for the 6 and 6 Plus, a change that may have made those models more prone to touch disease.

CLICK HERE to read the lawsuit

Lindstrom said Apple told him to delete everything on his phone and add it all back on, one at a time. Not only was that a hassle, he said it didn't work.

He told WSOC Action 9 that Apple then tried to sell him a new touchscreen for $200. He declined.

"You know, first world problems I guess. I feel sort of bad about what I'm complaining about," Lindstrom said. But he also feels bad his phone doesn't work.

WSOC Action 9 reached out to Apple three times in the past 10 days, but the company has not responded.

Published reports claim that the company will give you a refurbished replacement if your iPhone is still under warranty. Hopefully, that one doesn't have "touch disease" too. If it's not under warranty, WSOC Action 9 is told the repair runs between $85 and $249.

Apple iOS 10 debuts emojis and fonts no one seems to like

Newer isn't always better.

If Twitter complaints are any indication, those who have updated their iPhones to iOS 10 don't like the the change in style of emojis and aren't sure what to make of the new font.

>> Read more trending stories

The fuss comes as another problem users say they are having with iOS 10.

The new operating system, which began rolling out for users Tuesday, was met with complaints that it crashes devices.

Related: Apple responds to user complaints that iOS 10 crashes their iPhone

Aesthetically, some users are not happy with the new, bold font seen in different apps, especially the redesigned Apple Music application.

For some users, it's the redesign of emojis that is worse. 

The overhaul of Apple emojis comes after it was announced that the gun emoji would be replaced with a water pistol on the new OS.

Facebook co-founder donates $20M to stop Trump

Facebook co-founder Dustin Moskovitz doesn't normally make contributions in presidential elections — but when he does, he donates $20 million.

The billionaire and his wife are shelling out the cash to help stop Donald Trump from becoming president. The money will be split between multiple political groups, including some directly backing Hillary Clinton.

>> Read more trending stories

Moskovitz's never-Trump donation also came with an endorsement for Clinton. He wrote, "The Republican Party, and Donald Trump in particular, is running on a zero-sum vision, stressing a false contest between their constituency and the rest of the world."

Moskovitz and his wife donate to less-political causes, as well, through their organization Good Ventures, which they founded in 2011 after pledging to give most of their money away.

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Attention, parents: 4 obscure apps you need to know about

Kids and teens will pick up the newest technology fast as they head back to school, and that means they could be using apps that could put them in danger without parents even realizing it. 

Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat are all popular, but WFXT uncovered obscure apps that should keep parents on alert. 

Robert Siciliano, online security expert with Hotspot Shield, said what you don't know can harm your kids.

>> Read more trending stories

"There are apps out there today that look and act like apps we know and trust, but they are in fact ruses – fake apps designed to confuse or lie to the parent," Siciliano said.

Siciliano took WFXT through a list of apps parents might not know about and fall off their radars:  

CALCULATOR%Siciliano said this app is designed to mask itself as the calculator app and the parent would not know that the child installed it to hide all their inappropriate pictures.  

AUDIO MANAGERHe said this app is a decoy. It's designed to pose as the audio manager for the phone, but it is in fact there to mask and hide inappropriate photos and inappropriate text messages – essentially, anything the child wants to hide from the parents.  

BURN NOTESnapchat is old news for some kids and teens, and "Burn Note" is becoming more popular. Siciliano said, "Burn Note is essentially is designed like Snapchat to hide and mask data and in the end it erases or deletes any instant messages quickly and efficiently so parents can't see it."

OMEGLESiciliano says savvy online predators are lurking on apps on your child's smartphone and you might not even know it. He warns parents to take a look to see if their kids are using Omegle.

"Omegle is another one of those apps that can facilitate chats with complete strangers, so your child could be communicating with a user named 14-year-old Charlie who is 40-year-old Ed and your kid or you may never know it," Siciliano told WFXT.  

He advises a simple step for parents to take to keep an eye on their kids' apps.

"It's really important that parents set up their devices so that they sync up with iCloud so that parents know exactly what apps are being installed on the child's device. That way, if a child installs an app, it's installed on the parents' device, as well," Siciliano said.  

Spoiler: Amazon accidentally unveils iPhone 7 early

An hour before Apple was scheduled to announce its latest addition to the iPhone line on Wednesday, Amazon accidentally posted its specialized page for the iPhone 7.

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The page's appearance was first reported by Gizmodo, which noted it at 12:25 p.m. ET. Apple's event, at which the company was expected to announce the iPhone 7, was scheduled to start at 1 p.m. ET.

The Amazon page for "everything you need for the new iPhone 7" showed links for Bluetooth headphones, which appeared to confirm rumors that the iPhone 7 will not have an earbud jack, and photos of what appeared to be two back-facing cameras.

>> Related: Apple iPhone 7 event: What time is it; live stream; what’s new; how much for the phone?

Apple is holding its media event at the Bill Graham Civic Auditorium in San Francisco. Citing "leaks," many people have speculated that the iPhone 7 will take center stage at the event, along with a possible look at a new Apple Watch. The event will also be livestreamed on Apple's website.

Warner Bros. files copyright claim against itself

With torrents and pirated versions of popular movies plastered all over the web, it's understandable that big studios would try to protect their property. But Warner Bros. went a little overboard.

The blog TorrentFreak found out that, in its haste to remove pirated content, the studio accidentally tried to take down movies for sale on its own website.

>> Read more trending stories

The takedown requests were made by a third party called Vobile on Warner Bros.' behalf. Vobile asked Google to remove sites that hosted movies such as "The Dark Knight" and "The Matrix," including Amazon and WarnerBros.com.

The TorrentFreak writer told the BBC: "Piracy monitoring firms often use automated systems to find and report copyright infringing websites. I'm fairly certain that this happened here as well, considering the obvious mistakes that were made."

While it's funny to laugh at Warner Bros. for trying to pull its own films, the misstep highlights a serious issue with the way companies can abuse the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, or DMCA.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation pointed out that copyright enforcement companies can ignore potential mitigating factors like fair use.

Notably, a mother had a video briefly pulled from YouTube because her 1-year-old son was dancing while Prince's copyrighted classic, "Let's Go Crazy," was playing in the background.

The audio is pretty grainy, and there was clearly no intent to steal money from Prince or his record label, but there's just no way for a computer to judge intent.

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YouTube stars unhappy with site over ad money

YouTube's standards for what videos YouTubers can make money on have gotten them into a little bit of trouble. Some are equating the rules for advertiser-friendly videos to censorship.

>> Read more trending stories

Some things that can prevent YouTubers from making money on their videos? Sexual humor, violence and vulgar language.

Philip DeFranco has been one of the most vocal YouTubers to express concern over the rules. He argues that taking away monetization is "a form of censorship" and that it makes regularly producing videos not in line with the company's advertising guidelines unsustainable for those trying to make money.

DeFranco pointed out that one of the most challenging advertiser-friendly criteria might be about just covering current events. 

Monetization can be taken away if videos include "controversial or sensitive subjects and events, including subjects related to war, political conflicts, natural disasters and tragedies, even if graphic imagery is not shown."

But as YouTube pointed out in a statement to media, this isn't a new policy. The company simply made it easier for YouTubers to find out when a video has been de-monetized and appeal it if they want to.

As a Forbes contributor who's also a YouTuber pointed out, that knowledge could actually benefit YouTubers in the long run.

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