Your Social Media Posts Are Fueling the Future of Police Surveillance - Any posts on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, or any other location-tagged social media uploaded in [an] area will appear on a display at police headquarters. An uploaded Vine from one block away could show someone running away, and give the cops a starting point for their investigation. How long until that hypothetical situation is a reality? “We’re 100 percent there,” says Lee Guthman, head of business development at Geofeedia, a location-based social media monitoring site.
When Fiona Ingleby took to Twitter last April to vent about a journal’s peer-review process, she didn’t expect much of a response. With only around 100 followers on the social-media network, Ingleby — an evolutionary geneticist at the University of Sussex near Brighton, UK — guessed that she might receive a few messages of support or commiseration from close colleagues. What she got was an overwhelming wave of reaction. Social media has enabled an increasingly public discussion about the persistent problem of sexism in science.
Essena O'Neill was a social media celebrity, with over half a million followers on instagram and deals with brands to advertise their products. She was 16. Then she decided to stop. [more inside]
"Black nerds on Twitter are an eclectic group, into sci-fi/horror/nerdy shows like Doctor Who, The Walking Dead, American Horror Story and Game of Thrones, and they often view the show through a different lens, compared to a non-POC viewer. Blerd Twitter’s consistent viewership and use of blerd hashtags along with network hashtags have made them a prominent source for constructive critiques about television. Hashtags aside, Blerds will give shows a fair shot, but this community won’t hesitate to call series writers and producers out on important issues, like a lack of diversity and/or lax character development for Black characters on the show." How Twitter Blerds are Impacting the Future of TV (by Tai Gooden)
On Monday, October 26, SXSW Interactive made the call to cancel two sessions for the 2016 event: "SavePoint: A Discussion on the Gaming Community" and "Level Up: Overcoming Harassment in Games." We had hoped that hosting these two discussions in March 2016 in Austin would lead to a valuable exchange of ideas on this very important topic.[more inside]
However, in the seven days since announcing these two sessions, SXSW has received numerous threats of on-site violence related to this programming.
The challenge: if people would only know, hear, and see what poets did, then at least some of them would realize too how cool literature can actually be. - Three projects which engage in popularizing, mediating, and digitally archiving contemporary Hungarian poetry. [more inside]
A new season of Going Deep With David Rees begins next month. To help promote the show, Rees will eschew social media, taking his campaign on the road. [more inside]
Umair Haque on Why Twitter’s Dying (And What You Can Learn From It):
Can we create a better web? Sure. But I think we have to start with humility, gratitude, reality — not arrogance, privilege, blindness. Abuse isn’t a nuisance, a triviality, a minor annoyance that “those people” have to put up with for the great privilege of having our world-changing stuff in their grubby hands. It will chill, stop, and kill networks from growing, communities from blossoming, and lives from flourishing.
For Reuters, Neil Hall and Angus Berwick tell the tale of Lincolnshire hermit Rachel Denton. In 2006 Denton formally committed to living the rest of her days in solitude after a lifetime as a teacher and Carmelite nun. In addition to keeping a garden and raising chickens, she makes time in her routine to update her Twitter, Facebook, and LinkedIn profiles.
The Washington Post has a puzzle to see how well you understand social networks. The day’s political issue: whether baseball caps are fashionable. More explanation and the solution below the jump. [more inside]
"One broader implication of this is that no one should take the NSA seriously when they say they are only collecting “metadata” on whom someone contacts, rather than the content of the communication. Social network metadata is incredibly powerful." How to tell whether a Twitter user is pro-choice or pro-life without reading any of their tweets
Extreme phone pinching is the latest trend sweeping social media networks, and it involves holding your expensive phone over perilous locations.
There is plenty of space in the cultural conversation for stories about what it was like to have been depressed, but there isn’t much space or tolerance for narrating the experience in live time. That behavior, especially online, is called attention-seeking, or oversharing, or desperation. The sole exception to this rule is the cry for help, but the depressed person who isn’t sure which help to cry for is given little clearance to talk at all.--Depressiongrams: A Photo Essay
Life After A Total Hack. "A short story about the biggest fear you don’t even know you have," by Jon Methven. LinkedIn, eHarmony and Last.fm were all "hacked wide open this week [June 6, 2012] .. But what would happen to us if everything got compromised?" [more inside]
"I got out, and it’s not too late for you." - Sarah Nyberg on being the subject of an online hate mob. Meanwhile Zoe Quinn talks about sympathy for her abusers, and actions turned out to have consequences for internet troll Joshua Goldberg.
Not all comments are created equal: the case for ending online comments - Jessica Valenti for The Guardian. Previously: All of the commenting, none of the comments., What We Comment About When We Comment About Commenting
The U.S. Trans Survey, currently being conducted by the National Center for Transgender Equality, "will give researchers, policymakers, and advocates the ability to see the experiences of trans people over time, how things are changing, and what can be done to improve the lives of trans people."
So you're an university or research institute with a special collections library full of interesting books and other cool stuff and you're pressured to get down with the kids in social media but don't want to? Sarah Werner has you covered: How to Destroy Special Collections with Social Media.
"They Don’t Give a Damn about Governing... Once allied with but now increasingly hostile to the Republican hierarchy, conservative media is shaping the party’s agenda in ways that are impeding Republicans’ ability to govern and to win presidential elections."
After months of social media sparring, the Arrow TV superhero / WWE fanboy / giant nerd actor Stephen Amell will don full Oliver Queen-ish kayfabe to face his WWE nemesis Stardust on WWE Monday Night RAW. [Mild Arrow season 3 / The Flash season 1 spoilers within] [more inside]
The IBM Watson Personality Insights service uses linguistic analytics to extract a spectrum of cognitive and social characteristics from the text data that a person generates through blogs, tweets, forum posts, and more. Just enter a chunk of text with at least 100 recognized words and Watson will break down your (or Hitler's or Donald Trump's) personality compared to other participants. [more inside]
After a failed attempt to overthrow the president of Gambia in December 2014, the US authorities charged two middle-class Americans from Texas and Minnesota. But why did they think they could succeed?
That Time the Internet Sent a SWAT Team to My Mom's House
My mom asked what I had said to make people so angry, and what I had done to upset strangers so badly.Caroline Sinders, an interaction designer and researcher with IBM, describes how researching ways to prevent online abuse made her, and her family, the victim of a SWATting.
I’ve never felt worse about myself.
Em Ford is a filmmaker, beauty blogger, and former model. When Ford, who suffers from acne, began posting pictures of herself without makeup on social media, she received over 100,000 comments. In response, she created the short film, You Look Disgusting [SLYT] "to show how social media can set unrealistic expectations on both women and men." [more inside]
Jun, a small Andalusian town founded by the Romans 2,200 years ago, is using Twitter to reduce bureaucracy, serve its citizens, and run a more efficient administration.
Last March, activist Asam Ahmad posted a critique of call-out culture, arguing that public call-outs for bad behavior on social media are an ineffective as well as toxic method of furthering social justice. Instead, he advocates Ngọc Loan Trần's concept of calling-in, which emphasizes compassion and kindness while holding people accountable for their actions. While call-out culture is often criticized based on its effects on more privileged people, it can also have negative consequences for marginalized groups. For example, language policing can stifle discussion about social injustice. [more inside]
"Four Twitter bots I've made over the past few months. @man_products: products for men, @lady_products: products for ladies, @likeuberbut, a terrible startup idea generator and @medrobot, which reminds you to take your medications." From Mefi's own NoraReed (previously), via MetaFilter Projects [more inside]
Reporting, Reviewing, and Responding to Harassment on Twitter [via mefi projects] For three weeks last November, Women, Action, and the Media (WAM!) accepted harassment reports that they escalated to Twitter, collecting data on the experience of harassment and the process of reporting it. A team of academics published a comprehensive report on what they found, with a focus on the people reporting and receiving harassment, the kinds of harassment that were reported, Twitter's response to harassment reports, the process of reviewing harassment reports, and challenges for reporting processes. [more inside]
"I don't think they're all necessarily horrible people..." In an impressive display of solid intelligence tradecraft, the IC Watch project has released the Transparency Toolkit, whereby social media sites were mined for keywords, project names, employers, and locations known or suspected to be associated with the U.S. Intelligence Community. [more inside]
...can I help you with that? PLOS (The Public Library of Science) gets rid of reviewer and editor as a result of sexist statements, from Science Insider; Retraction Watch's summary. Here's the direct link to the apology and update on peer review policy from the PLOS ONE blog. Finally, this story gets the BuzzFeed treatment, plus some of the scientific community's responses using the hashtag AddMaleAuthorGate (additional examples: 1, 2, 3, 4, and the Microsoft Assistant paperclip: 5)
The New Yorker investigates the differences between "e-laughter" in its latest cultural commentary. [more inside]
"There is nothing borrowed, or blue." As the Sixth Circuit marriage cases head to the Supreme Court on Tuesday, LGBT organizations make their closing arguments via YouTube.
The Random Startup Website Generator is brought to you by a pair of Georgia Tech computer science students. via Slashdot
"Basically, somebody who worked at Twitter back in 2009 added me to that list, and all of a sudden my online network got upgraded to the kind of numbers that are usually only reserved for rock stars." Nobody Famous — what it's like to have the social network of a celebrity, without actually being famous, by Mefi's own Anil Dash.
The Oregon Trail Generation: Life Before and After Mainstream Tech A big part of what makes us the square peg in the round hole of named generations is our strange relationship with technology and the internet. We came of age just as the very essence of communication was experiencing a seismic shift, and it’s given us a unique perspective that’s half analog old school and half digital new school.
After years of grief and demands for improvement and ineffective response on their side(previously, previously, previously, etc), which led to the creation of solutions like GG autoblocker(previously), Twitter has updated their user policy in a fairly significant way. They've also added a system which will attempt to algorithmically identify harassment. Victims of previous online abuse are on board with the concept. The response isn't completely positive, however.
In an interview with Lucky Peach, Lockhart Steele (previously) talks about "flooding the zone" in the blog era:
One of the things that I try to say to the team at all of our sites is, Hey, let’s not be afraid to still be weird. Because as you get bigger, you can get forced to just be so mainstream. You have more people coming to your site, so you have more readers who are going to be confused by your obsessions, who are going to be like, What’s the joke, I don’t get it. And you have to be okay with people not getting it.via Super Punch
Incumbent President of Nigeria Goodluck Jonathan today conceded defeat in last weekend's election, and called President-Elect Muhammadu Buhari to congratulate him. The election has generally appeared to be the fairest in Nigeria's history and mostly free of the bloodshed of Jonathan's 2011 defeat of Buhari; this transition will mark Nigeria's first transfer of power to an opposition party after an election. Buhari's presidency will be his second administration as leader of Nigeria after acting as the head of a military junta from 1983 to 1985. [more inside]
Adweek points to Groupon as the current reigning monarch of social media. Someone/s at Groupon have been killing it with jokes on Facebook, responding to questions about a deal they offered for the Banana Bunker, a product that is apparently a real thing. Previously.
Seth Shostak, director of the Center for SETI Research at the SETI Institute, suggests in a NYT Op-Ed that we should "offer the aliens Big Data."
Such a large corpus — with its text, pictures, videos and sounds — would allow clever extraterrestrials to decipher much about our society, and even formulate questions that could be answered with the material in hand.Previously, Stephen Hawking has disagreed.
The Wall Street Journal reports on how Google favored its own shopping, travel services over rivals, and the U.S. antitrust probe of Google:
The 160-page critique, which was supposed to remain private but was inadvertently disclosed in an open-records request, concluded that Google’s “conduct has resulted—and will result—in real harm to consumers and to innovation in the online search and advertising markets.”Is Google an unelected superpower? A truly sinister social networking platform could manipulate public opinion even more effectively. (Previously)
Putin Has Vanished, but Rumors Are Popping Up Everywhere.
“I have enough trouble keeping track of the whereabouts of one world leader,” said Eric Schultz, a White House spokesman. “I would refer you to the Russians for questions on theirs. I’m sure they’ll be very responsive.”This is, in large part, a crisis of the Kremlin’s making. (Previously)
That's the argument made by Ben Thomas earlier this week. Thomas charges that overenthusiastic viral sharing of half-baked scientific projects can make it more difficult for more well-planned projects to achieve success, particularly when high-profile crowdfunded projects go on to flop badly. Worse, the public backlash when real, messier science fails to live up to the flashy, unrealistic claims that media and social media hype blows up can have repercussions even for scientists who are funded by traditional grants. Signe Cane has a useful criticism of Thomas' piece with advice for non-specialists on how to try to separate cool things in real scientific work from cool things that are mostly hype and exaggerations. On the flip side of crowdfunding, Jacquelyn Gill shares her experience of using crowdfunding to fund her scientific research, ultimately concluding that it was a hell of a lot of work for relatively minimal payout. And Terry McGlynn, another ecologist, expresses some reservations about the effects of crowdfunding and other publicly marketed initiatives on science more broadly.
Today, March 6, is Blackout Day, "a day where black people post, share, reblog, like, and distribute other photos of black people on social media. This includes Tumblr, Instagram, the petri dish known as Facebook, Vine, Twitter, and any other site that allows you to share photos." (FAQ, official master post)
Earlier this month, ...[(Rap) Genius] (previously)... quietly introduced what could become its most significant feature—the ability to annotate any page on the web. Currently in beta testing, the new functionality lets users add genius.com/ to the beginning of any URL to access a version of the page on Genius. The page is fully annotatable, so users can highlight and annotate any text on the page and view others’ annotations. The only public announcement of this feature so far is a mysterious, meme-bending billboard on Canal St. in NYC.