Journalist and Media 2017

I have written on journalism and media trends eariler few years ago. So it is time for update. What is the state of journalism and news publishing in 2017? NiemanLab’s predictions for 2017 are a good place to start thinking about what lies ahead for journalism. There, Matt Waite puts us in our place straight away by telling us that the people running the media are the problem

There has been changes on tech publishing. In January 2017 International Data Group, the owner of PCWorld magazine and market researcher IDC, on Thursday said it was being acquired by China Oceanwide Holdings Group and IDG Capital, the investment management firm run by IDG China executive Hugo Shong. In 2016 Arrow bought EE Times, EDN, TechOnline and lots more from UBM.

 

Here are some article links and information bits on journalist and media in 2017:

Soothsayers’ guides to journalism in 2017 article take a look at journalism predictions and the value of this year’s predictions.

What Journalism Needs To Do Post-Election article tells that faced with the growing recognition that the electorate was uniformed or, at minimum, deeply in the thrall of fake news, far too many journalists are responding not with calls for change but by digging in deeper to exactly the kinds of practices that got us here in the first place.

Fake News Is About to Get Even Scarier than You Ever Dreamed article says that what we saw in the 2016 election is nothing compared to what we need to prepare for in 2020 as incipient technologies appear likely to soon obliterate the line between real and fake.

YouTube’s ex-CEO and co-founder Chad Hurley service sees a massive amount of information on the problem, which will lead to people’s backlash.

Headlines matter article tells that in 2017, headlines will matter more than ever and journalists will need to wrest control of headline writing from social-optimization teams. People get their news from headlines now in a way they never did in the past.

Why new journalism grads are optimistic about 2017 article tells that since today’s college journalism students have been in school, the forecasts for their futures has been filled with words like “layoffs,” “cutbacks,” “buyouts” and “freelance.” Still many people are optimistic about the future because the main motivation for being a journalist is often “to make a difference.”

Updating social media account can be a serious job. Zuckerberg has 12+ Facebook employees helping him with posts and comments on his Facebook page and professional photographers to snap personal moments.
Wikipedia Is Being Ripped Apart By a Witch Hunt For Secretly Paid Editors article tells that with undisclosed paid editing on the rise, Wikipedians and the Wikimedia Foundation are working together to stop the practice without discouraging user participation. Paid editing is permissible under Wikimedia Foundation’s terms of use as long as they disclose these conflicts of interest on their user pages, but not all paid editors make these disclosures.

Big Internet giants are working on how to make content better for mobile devices. Instant Articles is a new way for any publisher to create fast, interactive articles on Facebook. Google’s AMP (Accelerated Mobile Pages) is a project that it aims to accelerate content on mobile devices. Both of those systems have their advantages and problems.

Clearing Out the App Stores: Government Censorship Made Easier article tells that there’s a new form of digital censorship sweeping the globe, and it could be the start of something devastating. The centralization of the internet via app stores has made government censorship easier. If the app isn’t in a country’s app store, it effectively doesn’t exist. For more than a decade, we users of digital devices have actively championed an online infrastructure that now looks uniquely vulnerable to the sanctions of despots and others who seek to control information.

1,979 Comments

  1. Tomi Engdahl says:

    A HuffPost Reporter Was Bombarded With Threats. Twitter Suspended Him.
    https://www.huffpost.com/entry/luke-obrien-doxed-threats-amymek_n_5b16bb9de4b0734a9937f2ca?guccounter=1

    When Twitter outsources policing its platform to victims of harassment, it empowers brigades of trolls and extremists.

    Reply
  2. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Bernhard Warner / The Atlantic:
    Algorithms used to take down “terrorist” videos are deleting evidence of war crimes and could hinder efforts to bring human-rights abusers to justice

    Tech Companies Are Deleting Evidence of War Crimes
    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2019/05/facebook-algorithms-are-making-it-harder/588931/

    Algorithms that take down “terrorist” videos could hamstring efforts to bring human-rights abusers to justice.

    Reply
  3. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Russia Is Targeting Europe’s Elections. So Are Far-Right Copycats.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/12/world/europe/russian-propaganda-influence-campaign-european-elections-far-right.html

    Less than two weeks before pivotal elections for the European Parliament, a constellation of websites and social media accounts linked to Russia or far-right groups is spreading disinformation, encouraging discord and amplifying distrust in the centrist parties that have governed for decades.

    European Union investigators, academics and advocacy groups say the new disinformation efforts share many of the same digital fingerprints or tactics used in previous Russian attacks, including the Kremlin’s interference in the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign.

    The activity offers fresh evidence that despite indictments, expulsions and recriminations, Russia remains undeterred in its campaign to widen political divisions and weaken Western institutions. Despite online policing efforts by American technology companies, it remains far easier to spread false information than to stop it.

    Russia remains a driving force, but researchers also discovered numerous copycats, particularly on the far right.

    Conspiracy theories are peddled freely, including that last month’s Notre-Dame fire was the work of Islamic terrorists, a spy agency, or an elite cabal that secretly runs the world.

    Often, these messages come directly from Russian news media and are repeated and amplified elsewhere.

    The European Parliament elections, which will be held between May 23 and May 26, are regarded as a test of rising populism in the European Union. Populist leaders, many of them sympathetic to Russia, have loosely joined together in hopes of expanding their influence in the Parliament and, in turn, redirecting or subverting policymaking in Brussels.

    Intelligence officials have not publicly accused the Kremlin of backing specific candidates in Europe

    Russia dismisses accusations of meddling.

    “The election has yet to come, and we are already suspected of doing something wrong?” the Russian prime minister, Dmitri A. Medvedev, said in March. “Suspecting someone of an event that has not yet happened is a bunch of paranoid nonsense.”

    Yet even as Russia remains a concern, officials say political groups across the Continent — particularly supporters of the far right — are adopting many of the Kremlin’s tactics, further blurring who is behind the messages.

    Technology companies have toughened policies to eliminate fake accounts, but researchers say their platforms will always be fertile ground for influence campaigns. Algorithms reward content that keeps users engaged, which means posts that stir anger spread and get clicks.

    “We are fundamentally dealing with a security challenge,” said Nathaniel Gleicher, head of Facebook’s cybersecurity policy. “There are a set of actors that want to manipulate public debate.”

    Reply
  4. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Heather Kelly / CNN:
    Facebook will now ban anyone who violates its “most serious polices” from using Facebook Live for a set period of time, starting with their first offense — San Francisco (CNN Business)Two months after the mass shooting at a mosque in New Zealand was live-streamed by the accused gunman …

    Facebook changes livestream rules after New Zealand shooting
    https://edition.cnn.com/2019/05/14/tech/facebook-livestream-changes/

    Reply
  5. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Casey Newton / The Verge:
    More Democrats are considering a breakup of Facebook, with Joe Biden, Kamala Harris the latest to say they’re thinking it over, joining Elizabeth Warren, others
    https://www.theverge.com/interface/2019/5/14/18622442/facebook-breakup-joe-biden-kamala-harris-democrats-chris-hughes

    Reply
  6. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Instagram Poll Gone Wrong: Malaysian Teen Commits Suicide After 69% People Answer Yes To ‘Die’
    https://www.indiatimes.com/trending/instagram-poll-gone-wrong-malaysian-teen-commits-suicide-after-69-people-answer-yes-to-die-367312.html

    Ramkarpal Singh, a lawyer and member of parliament, said that those who voted for the teenager to die could be guilty of abetting suicide, and urged authorities to investigate the circumstances leading to her death.

    Under the Malaysian law, anyone convicted of abetting suicide of a minor could face the death penalty or can be jailed for 20 years.

    Reply
  7. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Uncovering fake news bots
    https://www.kaspersky.com/blog/fake-news-bots/26943/

    Why fake news bots are still a thing

    Nobody likes bots, but social media companies really hate them, because bots make social networks less attractive to real people. For example, Twitter periodically identifies massive numbers of bots and banishes them (leaving real people whining about losing followers). That means social networks have their own ways of detecting bots. But their efforts are not enough to wipe the bots out completely.

    Social networks don’t disclose their algorithms, but it’s safe to say their effort is based on detecting abnormal behavior. The most obvious example: If an account tries to post a hundred posts a minute, that’s certainly a bot. Or, say, an account only retweets stuff from other accounts and never posts anything on its own, that’s also most likely a bot.

    But the creators of bots are constantly learning to modify their bots so that they can bypass social media services’ techniques. And social media services cannot afford to have too many false positives; mistakenly banning a lot of real people would cause outrage, so they have to be cautious. That means a certain number of bots go undetected.

    Reply
  8. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Israeli TV Eurovision webcast hacked with fake missile alert
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/may/15/israeli-tv-eurovision-webcast-hacked-with-fake-missile-alert

    Song contest semi-final interrupted with warnings of imminent attack on Tel Aviv

    The online stream of the Eurovision semi-finals in Israel was hacked to show warnings of a missile strike and images of blasts in the host city, Tel Aviv.

    The website for KAN’s television stations was interrupted on Tuesday evening – just as the competition’s first round was beginning – with a fake alert from Israel’s army telling of an impending attack.

    Messages such as: “Risk of Missile Attack, Please Take Shelter” and: “Israel is NOT Safe. You Will See!” appeared on the screen. Animated satellite footage showed explosions in the coastal city.

    “We know that at a certain stage there was an attempt, apparently by Hamas, to commandeer our digital broadcast,” the chief executive of KAN, Eldad Koblenz, told Israel’s Army Radio.

    “But I am happy to say that within a few minutes we managed to assume control over this phenomenon.”

    Reply
  9. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Makena Kelly / The Verge:
    White House launches tool to solicit information from people who had social media accounts suspended or banned and who suspect political bias behind the actions — ‘If you suspect political bias caused such an action to be taken against you, share your story with President Trump’

    White House launches tool to report censorship on Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, and Twitter
    https://www.theverge.com/2019/5/15/18626785/white-house-trump-censorsip-tool-twitter-instagram-facebook-conservative-bias-social-media

    ‘If you suspect political bias caused such an action to be taken against you, share your story with President Trump’

    On Wednesday, the White House launched a new tool for people to use if they feel they’ve been wrongly censored, banned, or suspended on social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter.

    “Too many Americans have seen their accounts suspended, banned, or fraudulently reported for unclear ‘violations’ of user policies,” the site reads. “No matter your views, if you suspect political bias caused such an action to be taken against you, share your story with President Trump.”

    https://whitehouse.typeform.com/to/Jti9QH

    Reply
  10. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Washington Post:
    White House won’t sign Christchurch Call to Action, an effort by governments and social media companies to fight online extremism, citing free speech concerns — The White House will not sign an international call to combat online extremism brokered between French and New Zealand officials …
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/technology/2019/05/15/white-house-will-not-sign-christchurch-pact-stamp-out-online-extremism-amid-free-speech-concerns/?utm_term=.4663990ed949

    Facebook:
    Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, Google, and Amazon sign on to the Christchurch Call to Action, commit to a 9-point plan to stop spread of terrorist content online — Today, Facebook’s Vice President for Global Affairs and Communications Nick Clegg joined G7 government and industry leaders …
    Facebook Joins Other Tech Companies to Support the Christchurch Call to Action
    https://newsroom.fb.com/news/2019/05/christchurch-call-to-action/

    Reply
  11. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Munsif Vengattil / Reuters:
    How political parties in India are using cheap software to send up to 100,000 WhatsApp messages a day and get around the app’s limit of five forwards per day

    In India election, a $14 software tool helps overcome WhatsApp controls
    https://www.reuters.com/article/india-election-socialmedia-whatsapp/in-india-election-a-14-software-tool-helps-overcome-whatsapp-controls-idUSKCN1SL0PZ

    Reply
  12. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Casey Newton / The Interface:
    As the definition of “bias” expands to include instances where social media users don’t have the desired outcome, it’s harder for platforms to say there is none

    https://www.getrevue.co/profile/caseynewton/issues/christchurch-calls-and-trump-hangs-up-179067

    The “tool” launched by the administration is, in fact, a Typeform page, which can be set up in a few minutes by anyone. The White House’s wording is broad enough that it might inspire anyone who has ever had a bad experience on a social network to register a complaint. “SOCIAL MEDIA PLATFORMS should advance FREEDOM OF SPEECH,” the form shouts. Whether platforms might also seek to moderate hate speech or terrorism (for example) isn’t a question that makes it into the form.
    This being the Trump White House, this new tool also appears to be a grift. As Kevin Roose put it: “The thing about the Trump Facebook bias survey is it’s just going to be used to assemble a voter file, which Trump will then pay Facebook millions of dollars to target with ads about how biased Facebook is.”

    In the meantime, “bias” is defined ever downward. In conservative parlance, it now refers to any instance in which the user of a social platform did not have a desired outcome. You didn’t appear high enough in search results? Your video wasn’t promoted by an algorithm? You were suspended for threatening to kill someone? It’s all just “bias” now.

    And for platforms, that presents a devilish trap. With the definition of “bias” constantly expanding, it becomes harder and harder to argue that it doesn’t happen. Social networks often do make mistakes around content moderation, which they have outsourced to an army of underpaid workers who must deal with near-daily changes to community standards.

    The White House’s view — to the extent that there is such a thing as a White House apart from the whims of the president — is not coherent.

    The call is a non-binding agreement, so signing it would not place any draconian new limits on speech. But it would require the Trump Administration to commit informally to de-radicalizing citizens, supporting academic research into violent extremism, and collaborating with other countries. And it refused.

    Other countries are taking much more aggressive action. Australia and Singapore have proposed onerous new laws against social platforms that require them to remove some content immediately, under penalty of massive fines or even jail time for executives. That helps to explain why the platforms all showed up in Paris today to sign the Christchurch Call, agreeing to take new action to prevent the use of live streaming and other platform technologies to promote terrorist ideologies.

    Reply
  13. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook changes algorithm to promote worthwhile & close friend content
    https://techcrunch.com/2019/05/16/facebook-algorithm-links/

    Reply
  14. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Endless facepalms.

    56 Percent Of Americans Don’t Think We Should Teach Arabic Numerals In School
    https://www.iflscience.com/editors-blog/56-percent-of-americans-dont-think-we-should-teach-arabic-numerals-in-school/

    Reply
  15. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook busts Israel-based campaign to disrupt elections
    https://www.foxnews.com/world/facebook-busts-israel-based-campaign-to-disrupt-elections

    Facebook says it has identified a private Israel-based influence campaign aimed at disrupting elections in various countries and has canceled dozens of accounts that engaged in spreading disinformation.

    Reply
  16. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The Brainwashing of a Nation
    http://sultanknish.blogspot.com/2019/05/the-brainwashing-of-nation.html?m=1

    Brainwashing isn’t a secretive event that takes place in hidden rooms. No hypnotists or vials full of chemicals are required. It takes place every day on a massive scale across the United States.

    Brainwashing isn’t magic, but it can look like magic.

    The art and science of brainwashing is well known. We don’t know it because we choose not to.

    Brainwashing happens every day. It doesn’t have to mean a complete transformation of identity. On the simplest level, it means compelling someone to believe something that isn’t true.

    Almost anyone can be compelled to say anything under enough stress. Many can be forced to believe it. The acid test of brainwashing is whether they will retain that belief once fight-or-flight mode passes.

    How do you brainwash a nation?

    Control the national environment, force a crisis on the country, and tap into their fear and guilt. And then you can outlaw planes, cows, skyscrapers, straws, plastic bags and the rest of the Green New Deal.

    The environmental crisis is just one example of how leftist movements can brainwash a Nation.

    Reply
  17. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Nicolas Kristen / Global Editors Network:
    Q&A with Google News creator Krishna Bharat on the impact of AI on journalism, the future of assisted interviews, and AI’s contribution to democratic processes

    Krishna Bharat on the impact of AI on journalism and democracy
    https://medium.com/global-editors-network/the-impact-of-ai-on-journalism-and-democracy-2725f7b7151c

    . Krishna Bharat, the creator of Google News, shares his thoughts on AI’s potential contributions to newsrooms and democratic processes as well as ways to democratise AI itself.

    Reply
  18. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Finland is winning the war on fake news. What it’s learned may be crucial to Western democracy
    https://edition.cnn.com/interactive/2019/05/europe/finland-fake-news-intl/

    A slide titled “Have you been hit by the Russian troll army?” included a checklist of methods used to deceive readers on social media: image and video manipulations, half-truths, intimidation and false profiles.

    Another slide, featuring a diagram of a Twitter profile page, explained how to identify bots: look for stock photos, assess the volume of posts per day, check for inconsistent translations and a lack of personal information.

    The lesson wrapped with a popular “deepfake”

    The course is part of an anti-fake news initiative launched by Finland’s government in 2014 – two years before Russia meddled in the US elections

    As the trolling ramped up in 2015, President Sauli Niinisto called on every Finn to take responsibility for the fight against false information. A year later, Finland brought in American experts to advise officials on how to recognize fake news, understand why it goes viral and develop strategies to fight it.

    Although it’s difficult to measure the results in real-time, the approach appears to be working, and now other countries are looking to Finland as an example of how to win the war on misinformation.

    “The word ‘fake news’ is thrown around very often,”

    he always asks for the source. “You can never be too sure,”

    “What we have been developing here – combining fact-checking with the critical thinking and voter literacy – is something we have seen that there is an interest in outside Finland,”

    The small and largely homogenous country consistently ranks at or near the top of almost every index – happiness, press freedom, gender equality, social justice, transparency and education – making it difficult for external actors to find fissures within society to crowbar open and exploit.

    Reply
  19. Tomi Engdahl says:

    John Scott-Railton / The Citizen Lab:
    Inside Endless Mayfly, an Iran-aligned network of websites and online personas used to spread false information targeting Saudi Arabia, the US, and Israel

    Burned After Reading Endless Mayfly’s Ephemeral Disinformation Campaign
    https://citizenlab.ca/2019/05/burned-after-reading-endless-mayflys-ephemeral-disinformation-campaign/

    Key Findings

    Endless Mayfly is an Iran-aligned network of inauthentic personas and social media accounts that spreads falsehoods and amplifies narratives critical of Saudi Arabia, the United States, and Israel.
    Endless Mayfly publishes divisive content on websites that impersonate legitimate media outlets. Inauthentic personas are then used to amplify the content into social media conversations. In some cases, these personas also privately and publicly engage journalists, political dissidents, and activists.

    Reply
  20. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Why the Guardian is changing the language it uses about the environment
    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/may/17/why-the-guardian-is-changing-the-language-it-uses-about-the-environment

    From now, house style guide recommends terms such as ‘climate crisis’ and ‘global heating’

    Instead of “climate change” the preferred terms are “climate emergency, crisis or breakdown” and “global heating” is favoured over “global warming”, although the original terms are not banned.

    Reply
  21. Tomi Engdahl says:

    My Video Went Viral. Here’s Why
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fHsa9DqmId8

    My hypothesis is that the algorithm, rather than viewer preference, drives views on the site. As the algorithm shifts, various YouTubers experience burnout (as what used to work no longer works) and right now click-through rate is the key metric. So clickable titles and thumbnails are the only way to get a lot of impressions and hence views – they are the only way to go viral.

    Reply
  22. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Who burned Notre Dame? Brussels goes after fake news as EU election nears
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-eu-election-disinformation/who-burned-notre-dame-brussels-goes-after-fake-news-as-eu-election-nears-idUSKCN1SM0LQ

    The European Union has launched a coordinated fight against fake news ahead of this month’s European Parliament elections, but officials acknowledge there are limits to what can be achieved against a danger barely recognized a few years ago.

    The risk is “very high”, said Lutz Guellner, one of the EU’s top officials in charge of the anti-disinformation campaign. “Just look at the past, the U.S. elections, what happened in France, Germany.”

    By funding fact-checking organizations, building up an in-house unit to counter disinformation from Russia, and enlisting Facebook, Google, Twitter and others, Brussels hopes to shield the 427 million people eligible to vote for the 751-seat EU chamber on May 23-26.

    Reply
  23. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook’s latest account purge exposes Africa’s misinformation problem
    https://techcrunch.com/2019/05/20/facebook-account-purge-africa-fake-news/

    Facebook last week purged a network of hundreds of pages, groups and Instagram accounts it labeled as producing “coordinated inauthentic behavior” toward Africa.

    The activity originated in Israel and was largely targeted toward Nigeria, Senegal, Togo, Angola, Niger, and Tunisia.

    Reply
  24. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Where GDPR goes next: How digital privacy is taking over the world
    https://www.zdnet.com/article/where-gdpr-goes-next-how-digital-privacy-is-taking-over-the-world/

    One year on from the EU introducing its data protection laws, the impact is spreading around the world.

    Designed to update the privacy rights of internet users and ensure organisations are transparent and responsible when handling the personal information of customers and clients, the European Union’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) laws came into force on May 25 last year.

    GDPR was designed to protect EU citizens’ data, but the open nature of the web inevitably means it has an impact beyond its own shores. Even companies outside of the EU will often have to comply with the data protection legislation – for example, if they offer goods or services to EU citizens or if they have a branch somewhere within the trading bloc.

    This extended reach of GDPR has lead to some unexpected outcomes. One example: European internet users looking to visit some US-based news publications may find that they can’t view the websites – instead being met with pages explaining the publication didn’t comply with the new legislation and blocked them out instead.

    Some eventually found solutions to this, while a year on from the legislation being introduced some US publications continue to only show a holding page to European visitors.

    “To a large extent in the US, most users attribute GDPR with an influx of cookie notifications and see it as an annoyance, rather than what it is: an attempt by regulators to give the consumer a level of visibility and control over what data is being collected about them,” says Tim Mackey, senior technical evangelist at Synopsys.

    But soon enough, even for businesses that have no involvement with the EU, there may be no hiding from data protection legislation as countries and regions around the world look to implement their own privacy laws, including Brazil, Japan, South Korea, India and others.

    One of those is the home of Silicon Valley, California, which is set to introduce the California Consumer Privacy Act as of January 1 2020.

    Apple CEO Tim Cook has called for the US to introduce an equivalent to GDPR to prevent data being weaponised against users. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently spoke about how privacy will be the future of Facebook – even although he admits himself that some may find that hard to believe.

    Reply
  25. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Natasha Lomas / TechCrunch:
    Study: despite News Feed changes, “junk news” from known sources of disinformation in EU get 1.2x-4x the engagement of professional news sources on Facebook — A study carried out by academics at Oxford University to investigate how junk news is being shared on social media …

    Facebook still a great place to amplify pre-election junk news, EU study finds
    https://techcrunch.com/2019/05/21/facebook-still-a-great-place-to-amplify-pre-election-junk-news-eu-study-finds/

    Reply
  26. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Finland is winning the war on fake news. What it’s learned may be crucial to Western democracy
    https://edition.cnn.com/interactive/2019/05/europe/finland-fake-news-intl/

    Reply
  27. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Can You REALLY Trust Online Reviews?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pCbchoYg__k

    How can you sort out genuine online reviews from fake opinions that are bought and paid for?

    Reply
  28. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook found hosting masses of far right EU disinformation networks
    https://techcrunch.com/2019/05/22/facebook-found-hosting-masses-of-far-right-eu-disinformation-networks/

    A multi-month hunt for political disinformation spreading on Facebook in Europe suggests there are concerted efforts to use the platform to spread bogus far right propaganda to millions of voters ahead of a key EU vote which kicks off tomorrow.

    Following the independent investigation, Facebook has taken down a total of 77 pages and 230 accounts from Germany, UK, France, Italy, Spain and Poland — which had been followed by an estimated 32 million people and generated 67 million ‘interactions’ (i.e. comments, likes, shares) in the last three months alone.

    Reply
  29. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Assange Indicted Under Espionage Act, Raising First Amendment Issues
    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/05/23/us/politics/assange-indicted-espionage-act-first-amendment.html

    Julian Assange, the WikiLeaks leader, has been indicted on 17 new counts of violating the Espionage Act for his role in publishing classified military and diplomatic documents in 2010

    Legal scholars believe that prosecuting reporters over their work would violate the First Amendment, but the prospect has not yet been tested in court because the government had never charged a journalist under the Espionage Act.

    Though he is not a conventional journalist, much of what Mr. Assange does at WikiLeaks is difficult to distinguish in a legally meaningful way from what traditional news organizations like The New York Times do: seek and publish information that officials want to be secret, including classified national security matters, and take steps to protect the confidentiality of sources.

    Reply
  30. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Christchurch call − pseudo-counter-terrorism at the cost of human rights?
    https://edri.org/christchurch-call-pseudo-counter-terrorism-at-the-cost-of-human-rights/

    While the approach of the New Zealand government is sensible, and the final text of the call to action does include human rights safeguards for a free and open internet, the initiative is naïve as it relies on questionable companies and governments’ practices, inefficient in combatting terrorism, and opens the door to serious human rights breaches.

    A “sacrificed process”

    In the words of Arden herself, civil society consultations were “sacrificed” to allow for a swift process and for the call to be launched, on the occasion of the Tech for Good conference and the G7 Digital Ministers meeting. NGOs and other stakeholders such as journalists, academics and the technical community did not get a chance to submit contributions before the finalisation of the call. The rushed timeline was an obstacle to any meaningful participation in the process.

    Reply
  31. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook releases community standards enforcement report
    https://techcrunch.com/2019/05/23/facebook-releases-community-standards-enforcement-report/

    Facebook has just released its latest community standards enforcement report and the verdict is in: people are awful, and happy to share how awful they are with the world.

    While the company’s algorithms and internal moderators have become exceedingly good at tracking myriad violations before they’re reported to the company, hate speech, online bullying, harassment and the nuances of interpersonal awfulness still have the company flummoxed.

    In most instances, Facebook is able to enforce its own standards and catches between 90% and over 99% of community standards violations itself. But those numbers are far lower for bullying

    the creation of fake accounts. In the first quarter of the year, Facebook found and removed 2.19 billion fake accounts.

    company took down nearly 1.76 billion instances of spammy content in the first quarter.

    Reply
  32. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Supolla ja muilla viranomaisilla ei ole havaintoja Suomeen kohdistuvasta vaali­vaikuttamisesta
    Turvallisuuskomitealla havaintoja vaalikeskusteluihin liittyvästä automatisoitujen tilien käytöstä.
    https://www.hs.fi/politiikka/art-2000006118785.html

    Reply
  33. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Cate Cadell / Reuters:
    As the Tiananmen anniversary nears, censorship by Chinese internet companies has ramped up and is largely automated with AI and voice and image recognition tech — BEIJING (Reuters) – It’s the most sensitive day of the year for China’s internet, the anniversary of the bloody June 4 crackdown …

    China’s robot censors crank up as Tiananmen anniversary nears
    https://www.reuters.com/article/us-china-tiananmen-censorship/chinas-robot-censors-crank-up-as-tiananmen-anniversary-nears-idUSKCN1SW03Y

    It’s the most sensitive day of the year for China’s internet, the anniversary of the bloody June 4 crackdown on pro-democracy protests at Tiananmen Square, and with under two weeks to go, China’s robot censors are working overtime.

    Reply
  34. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Yancey Strickler / OneZero:
    The internet is becoming a dark forest, full of life that’s retreated from public view, as private spaces like Facebook Groups and invite-only forums have grown

    The Dark Forest Theory of the Internet
    This is also what the internet is becoming: a dark forest
    https://onezero.medium.com/the-dark-forest-theory-of-the-internet-7dc3e68a7cb1

    Reply
  35. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Geoff Colvin / Fortune:
    A look at AT&T’s grand vision of transforming into a “modern media company” spanning multiple content networks, distribution channels, and customer data streams

    AT&T Has Become a New Kind of Media Giant
    http://fortune.com/longform/att-media-company/

    Bellhead CEO Randall Stephenson is taking on Netflix and Comcast simultaneously. It won’t be easy.

    Using company properties to publicize the show’s final-season premiere on AT&T-owned HBO is a minor example of the synergies he foresees; AT&T wireless customers with top-tier plans can also get HBO for free, for example. That’s a result of another titanic battle, the end in February of AT&T’s fight with the U.S. Department of Justice to win legal clearance to fully integrate operations with the Time Warner A-list media properties AT&T had agreed to buy more than two years earlier: most prominently, HBO, Warner Bros., CNN, TBS, and TNT.

    Stephenson’s strategy is breathtaking in scale and scope, the largest transformation underway at any company in the Fortune 500. AT&T’s main traditional competitor, Verizon, has chosen an entirely different path, and Stephenson’s new rivals are in markedly different businesses.

    Reply
  36. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Assange Charged With 17 New Counts Under Espionage Act
    https://www.securityweek.com/assange-charged-17-new-counts-under-espionage-act

    A superseding indictment returned by a U.S. federal grand jury on Thursday charges WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange with 18 counts related to illegally obtaining and disclosing classified information.

    Reply
  37. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The real reasons why China bans foreign tech companies
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=swuir_7YIPs

    China’s internet is censored. You already know this. But do you also know why? (The Story Behind Ep. 23)

    Reply
  38. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Facebook Figures Five Percent of Accounts Are Fake
    https://www.securityweek.com/facebook-figures-five-percent-accounts-are-fake

    Facebook on Thursday said it recently disabled billions of bogus accounts set up by “bad actors” and that five percent of active accounts are likely fakes.

    Reply
  39. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Technoviking: The Meme That Sued Its Creator
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ajYsC9-poLw

    The Story Of Technoviking – 2016 – Short Version – EN DE ES subs
    https://vimeo.com/140265561

    Reply
  40. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Jessica Davies / Digiday:
    Four German publishing groups, Axel Springer, Funke Mediengruppe, RTL, and Gruner+Jahr, will sell their combined ad inventory in an effort to combat Big Tech

    Germany’s biggest publisher sales houses unite to fight Google, Facebook and Amazon
    https://digiday.com/media/germanys-biggest-publisher-sales-houses-unite-fight-google-facebook-amazon/

    The goal: to actively pull media agency and direct-advertiser investment from the platforms into the media groups’ pots. Ad alliance executives will seek to lock in negotiated, custom, annual agreements with media agencies and advertisers that want to work directly with the publishers.

    “This level of cooperation [between sales houses] would have been unthinkable in the past,”

    “Growth has been assumed by Google, YouTube and Facebook,” added Schwecke. “With this framework and cooperation, we want to get back our fair share. Amazon is also relevant in the German market and growing. This is the base of our future growth: to find the right mix of reach, relevance, service and highest ad quality that you can generate for advertisers and agencies.”

    Reply
  41. Tomi Engdahl says:

    The latest key newsroom job: membership editor
    https://digiday.com/media/latest-key-newsroom-job-membership-editor/

    Publishers hunting for membership revenue need to test, develop and distribute new kinds of content for a specific pocket of their audience. That’s given rise to new kind of role, the membership editor, which a growing number of publishers are trying to fill — and figure out where to stash — within their organizations.

    Publishers including Quartz, The Guardian and The Atlantic already have people in the role — The Guardian’s has been there for years — but over the past six months, publishers ranging from HuffPost and BuzzFeed News to more specialized sites such as The Intercept and Texas Tribune have all put up job listings for membership editors.

    The responsibilities for these roles differ significantly.

    responsibilities: Connect with product, marketing and editorial colleagues; develop messaging and distribution strategies for content; develop ways to market membership products. But the balance between those tasks varies widely, illustrating how nascent membership operations are at most media companies.

    Reply
  42. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Gerrit De Vynck / Bloomberg:
    The rise of Chrome and its open source Chromium sibling, often used in new browser projects, raises concerns about Google’s effective power over the web

    Google’s Chrome Becomes Web ‘Gatekeeper’ and Rivals Complain
    https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2019-05-28/google-s-chrome-becomes-web-gatekeeper-and-rivals-complain

    Once underdog, browser now labeled ‘spyware,’ ‘monopolist’
    Company accused of stalling approvals for rival browsers

    When Samuel Maddock built a browser that lets friends watch an online video at the same time, he used what seemed like the cheapest and simplest option: Chromium, a free, open-source version of Google’s Chrome web browser.

    Maddock’s creation worked well, but because it was based on Chromium, he needed another Google product called Widevine to authenticate users and prevent video piracy.

    answer: sorry, you can’t use the software for that.

    He wasn’t doing anything illegal.

    “You have these gatekeepers like Google that decide which projects can work and if you’re not granted that permission you’re screwed,’’ Maddock said.

    This is one small developer working on a small project. But his story demonstrates how Google’s dominance of the browser market — and the underlying technology tools — gives the company far-reaching control over how the web works, and who gets to create new ways of accessing it.

    regulators from India to the European Union are looking for ways to keep it in check. The EU has already fined Google for breaking antitrust laws in the markets for online search, display advertising and mobile operating systems.

    Few home-grown Google products have been as successful as Chrome. Launched in 2008, it has more than 63% of the market and about 70% on desktop computers, according to StatCounter data. Mozilla’s Firefox is far behind

    Google won by offering consumers a fast, customizable browser for free, while embracing open web standards. Now that Chrome is the clear leader, it controls how the standards are set.

    Most major browsers are now built on the Chromium software code base that Google maintains. Opera, an indie browser that’s been used by techies for years, swapped its code base for Chromium in 2013. Even Microsoft is making the switch this year. That creates a snowball effect, where fewer web developers build for niche browsers, leading those browsers to switch over to Chromium to avoid getting left behind.

    This leaves Chrome’s competitors relying on Google employees who do most of the work to keep Chromium software code up to date. Chromium is open source, so anyone can suggest changes to it, but the majority of programmers who approve contributions are Google employees

    Chrome is so ascendant these days that web developers often don’t bother to test their sites on competing browsers. Google services including YouTube, Docs and Gmail sometimes don’t work as well on rival browsers, sending frustrated users to Chrome. Instead of just another ship slicing through the sea of the web, Chrome is becoming the ocean.

    “Whatever Chrome does is what the standard is, everyone else has to follow,” said Andreas Gal, the former chief technology officer of Mozilla.

    “There were dozens and dozens of ‘oopsies,’ where Google ships something and, ‘oops,’ it doesn’t work in Firefox,’’ Gal said. “They say oh we’re going to fix it right away, in two months, and in the meantime every time the user goes to these sites, they think, ‘oh, Firefox is broken.’’’

    Google has tried to mitigate this problem. It has a separate project focused on making different browsers behave in more uniform ways so website developers have less tweaking to do.

    Chrome Was Just a Ripple in 2009

    Microsoft’s Internet Explorer dominated the browser market a decade ago

    That dominance means Google sets the standard for what the internet is supposed to be. And in that vision, advertising and user data collection are the defaults.

    “Small-share browsers are at the mercy of Google, and Google is stalling us for no communicated-to-us reason,’’

    Winning the browser war has done a lot more for Google than just allow it to create a friendly space for its other web services. When Chrome users are logged-in to a Google account, the company can follow them around the web, cataloging what sites they visit. All the data help Google’s ad products improve.

    “Chrome is independent from the ads group, but of course we collaborate with them, we both have a shared goal of a free and open web,’’ Fisher said. “Part of making the web really great is that there’s a diversity of content for users to consume.’’

    Diversity of browsers is another matter.

    Reply
  43. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Why Do Stupid People Think They’re Intelligent?
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oFL5NoM9GVE

    Comments:

    “Being smart is knowing when you are wrong. Being intelligent is knowing why you are wrong.”

    Winning a argument against a genius is near impossible…
    But winning a argument against an idiot is impossible…
    “Some greek dude 300BC”

    “The problem with internet quotes is that they are very often unverified.”
    -Abraham Lincoln

    -The trouble with stupid people is that like the dead they are unaware of their own condition !
    -Intellectual Honesty requires great discipline ….
    -Nothing and no one is above ridicule, criticism, scrutiny or improvement, especially me :)
    -Only a skeptical mind is truly an open mind……

    “The Whole problem with the world is that fools and fanatics are always so sure of themselves, and wise people are filled with doubts.”
    Bertrand Russell

    “Never argue with a fool. They’ll drag you down to their level and beat you with the experience.”
    -Mark Twain

    “Ignorance more often begets confidence than does knowledge.” – Charles Darwin

    “Dumb People are always blissfully unaware of how dumb they really are.”
    -Patrick Star

    “A sign of an agile mind is to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it as true” :)
    To win an argument and yet to still lose the debate is immensely frustrating…..
    Pay attention when arguing with the stupid to the moment when they stop arguing the point and start trying to undermine you, “You’re opinionated, egotistical, narrow minded” etc. etc.

    When you are reasonably certain you are intelligent but are also aware of the Dunning-Kruger Effect

    Stupid people always try to make other people “feel” stupid.
    (John Walker 2019)

    ”The problem with speaking in quotes is people often forget to think for themselves” Anise in the amazing world of gumball

    “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know” Ernest Herniway (or something like that, not bothering to Google the guys real name).

    Comments: I’m gonna quote smart people to appear more intelligent

    don’t know who said it, but the quote I am thinking of is something along the lines of:
    “Never argue with a fool because people might not know the difference”. I think it was Murphy who did Murphy’s law but we can argue that.
    I think we should all be open to thoughts from all angles, and squeeze out the pieces we might never have considered and call that mining fools gold!

    Smart people are smart enough to know they are smart and stupid people aren’t smart enough to know that they they aren’t smart.

    Reply
  44. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Keach Hagey / Wall Street Journal:
    Study on behavioral ad targeting finds that publishers only get about 4% more revenue for an ad impression that has a cookie enabled than for one that doesn’t

    Behavioral Ad Targeting Not Paying Off for Publishers, Study Suggests
    Finding could affect where publishers line up in brewing privacy battles
    https://www.wsj.com/articles/behavioral-ad-targeting-not-paying-off-for-publishers-study-suggests-11559167195

    Are creepy advertisements really necessary to support the free web?

    A new academic study suggests they aren’t.

    Behavioral advertising, which involves collecting data about readers’ online behavior and using it to serve them specially tailored ads, often through bits of code called cookies, has become the dominant force in digital advertising in recent years.

    That modest gain for publishers stands in contrast to the vastly larger sums advertisers are willing to pay for behaviorally targeted ads.

    researchers at the University of Minnesota, University of California, Irvine, and Carnegie Mellon University suggest publishers only get about 4% more revenue for an ad impression that has a cookie enabled than for one that doesn’t.

    That modest gain for publishers stands in contrast to the vastly larger sums advertisers are willing to pay for behaviorally targeted ads.

    Much of the premium likely is being eaten up by the so-called “ad tech tax,” the middlemen’s fees that eat up 60 cents of every dollar spent on programmatic ads, according to marketing intelligence firm Warc.

    The online ad ecosystem is complex and opaque

    Publishers’ inability to benefit much from behavioral targeting could have implications for policy as lawmakers in Washington, D.C., debate the shape of national privacy legislation.

    “It is a huge finding in terms of the policy debate,”

    “All of these externalities with regard to the ad economy—the harm to privacy, the expansion of government surveillance, the ability to microtarget and drive divisive content—were often justified to industry because of this ‘huge’ value to publishers,” Mr. Soltani said.

    The shift toward behavioral targeting has come along with two other trends: the emergence of the Google- Facebook duopoly, which in 2018 accounted for 58% of U.S. digital ad spending, according to eMarketer Inc.; and the stalling of digital display ad revenue growth for many digital publishers.

    Reply
  45. Tomi Engdahl says:

    Jim Waterson / The Guardian:
    Ofcom finds 78% of Britons have concerns about harmful online experiences, with 70% of citizens wanting more regulation of social media, up from 52% a year ago

    Britons increasingly fearful of internet risks, Ofcom research shows
    Support for regulation grows as 78% express concern over harmful experiences
    https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2019/may/30/britons-increasingly-fearful-of-internet-risks-ofcom-research-shows

    Reply
  46. Tomi Engdahl says:

    White Nationalist Groups Banned By Facebook Are Still On The Platform
    https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/janelytvynenko/facebook-white-nationalist-ban-evaded

    “Facebook likes to make a PR move and say that they’re doing something, but they don’t always follow up on that.”

    Reply

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