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Security or surveillance? How smart doorbell company Ring partners with police

Drew Harwell on doorbell-camera company Ring turning its focus to surveillance. Laura Reiley on the war over what plant-based brands can call themselves. Adam Taylor on Boris Johnson’s move to suspend Parliament, and debate, ahead of the Brexit deadline.
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Post Reports is the premier daily podcast from The Washington Post. Unparalleled reporting. Expert insight. Clear analysis. Every weekday afternoon.

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From smart doorbells to surveillance
The doorbell-camera company Ring has forged video-sharing partnerships with more than 400 police forces across the United States, granting them access to homeowners’ camera footage and a powerful role in what the company calls America’s “new neighborhood watch.” 

Ring is owned by Amazon, which bought the firm last year for more than $800 million, financial filings show. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos owns The Washington Post.

“For a lot of homeowners, they’re okay with sharing their video to police,” tech reporter Drew Harwell says. “But a lot of people are not, and they see this as a step toward Big Brother — a step toward this surveillance system where police can see a lot about us that we’re not always that comfortable with.”

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Veggie burgers caught in the crossfire of a war over the future of food
For decades, veggie burgers were the token offering to vegans at backyard barbecues, and Tofurky was the Thanksgiving benediction to the meat-free loved ones in our lives.

But as plant-based meat goes from an afterthought to a financial juggernaut that aims to change how most people eat, the opposition has suddenly awakened: Many of the country’s 800,000 cattle ranchers have declared war on Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat, which use technology to make products that hew closely to the taste and texture of meat.

“First-generation” veggie burgers and similar products are caught in the crossfire, as Laura Reiley reports.

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Boris Johnson moves to suspend Parliament ahead of Brexit deadline on Oct. 31
Queen Elizabeth II approved a request Wednesday by Prime Minister Boris Johnson to suspend, or prorogue, Parliament for several weeks ahead of Britain’s upcoming departure from the European Union, an unusual maneuver that will rob his opponents of time to thwart a no-deal Brexit.

“The reaction in Britain has been very strong,” Adam Taylor explains. “You see from opposition lawmakers they’re already calling it a constitutional crisis, saying this is something that goes against the British government and the way the British constitution works.”

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About Post Reports

Post Reports is the premier daily podcast from The Washington Post. Unparalleled reporting. Expert insight. Clear analysis. Every weekday afternoon.