Congressional Science Committee tweets link to Breitbart climate denial by self-confessed bullshit artist

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

James Delingpole is an invective-hurling anti-climate science columnist who has candidly admitted that he doesn't bother to read scientific papers, calling himself a "an interpreter of interpretations." Read the rest

Out of 8 companies surveyed, only Twitter would rule out helping Trump build a database of Muslims

twitterbird_rgb-png

Trump's Muslim database promise was extreme, even by Trump's standards; worse news, the US tech industry has built out a surveillance capability that would let him do it. Read the rest

NYT publishes damning, deep look at Trump's commercial/presidential conflicts of interests, so Trump tweets crazy fake-vote conspiracy

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

As George W Bush taught us: "fool me twice, we don't get fooled again." Read the rest

Beyond fake news: the "constructed realities" of the polarized world

1-zsefi3jtdolczzqbfn2dmg

Gilad Lotan -- our favorite fake-news sleuthing data-scientist -- writes about the problem of not-quite-fake news, which is much more pernicious than mere lies: it's news that uses attention-shaping, one-sided "news" accounts that divide their readers into their own "constructed realities." Read the rest

Wisconsin: America's top voting-machine security expert says count was irregular; Fed judge says gerrymandering was unconstitutional

flag_of_wisconsin-svg

University of Michigan prof J Alex Halderman (previously) is one of America's top experts on voting machine security (see this, for example), and he's issued a joint statement with voting-rights attorney John Bonifaz to the Clinton campaign, advising them to ask for a recount of the Wisconsin votes. Read the rest

Twitterbot experiment suggests that public disapproval by white men can reduce harassers' use of racist language

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

NYU PhD candidate Kevin Munger made a set of four male-seeming twitterbots that attempted to "socially sanction" white Twitter users who habitually used racial epithets (he reasons that these two characteristics are a good proxy for harassment): the bots could be white or black (that is, have names that have been experimentally shown to be associated with "whiteness" or "blackness") and could have 2 followers or 500 of them. Read the rest

Before Trump condemned post-election protests, he called on Americans to "fight like hell and stop this great and disgusting injustice"

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

Donald Trump's inaugural presidential tweet moaned that "Now professional protesters, incited by the media, are protesting. Very unfair!" was posted even as he was deleting his 2012 post-Obama election tweets repeatedly calling for a "revolution." Read the rest

President-elect Trump returns to Twitter to lash out at "very unfair" media

Cw8qV7DUkAArti0

Today he was shown around the White House by outgoing president Barack Obama. This evening he's back on Twitter, angry at the media. President-elect Donald Trump has found his phone.

Read the rest

San Francisco high-school students stage a mass walkout in protest of Trump

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

Go, kids, go! Read the rest

Donald Trump's campaign takes away his right to tweet without supervision

donald_trump_2013_cropped_more

Trump's press team no longer lets him control his own Twitter account, according to campaign insiders who spoke to the New York Times; now he must dictate proposed tweets to grownups who decide whether to publish them. Read the rest

Twitter killing Vine video service makes the internet worse

27-vines-.w710.h473.2x

Brian Feldman explains why Twitter's decision to kill the Vine looping video service makes the internet worse.

The point of Vine was never to generate the next Fellini. It was to have dumb, stupid free play on an internet increasingly hostile to that kind of freedom, whether because of surveillance or heavy-handed advertiser presence or trolls. The lack of adult supervision or corporate culture may have made it somewhat impenetrable, but it also made it feel free in a way no other social network really does.

Vine also had what Silicon Valley types describe as a poor "culture fit."

Vine wasn’t just dominated by teenagers — it was dominated by teenagers of color. Especially black teens, who created a disproportionate number of popular Vines and used the social network to demonstrate wit, intelligence, creativity, and comic timing that was rarely given a spotlight elsewhere.

Twitter's decision to kill it is being felt as deep pain on the web. Twitter itself is worse than unpleasant: it's the oxygen keeping the internet on fire, feeding trolls, harassers and white supremacists. Vine, on the other hand, was adorable, funny, impervious to the hate and great because "there were no brands or grown ups or neonazis to ruin it."

But business is interested in at least two of those three things.

People often wonder why Twitter, more than other major social networks, is having so much difficulty figuring out ways to combat abuse. It is already far from a free-speech environment, after all, offering private intellectual property enforcement and (at least in a few cases) region-specific political censorship. Read the rest

President Obama reads mean tweets about himself

@nathan: "Barack Obama is the Nickelback of presidents."

@DJ_lcpl: "Barack Obama...bro, do you even lift!?" (Obama's response: "Well, I lifted the ban on Cuban cigars, that's worth something.")

@realDonaldTrump: "President Obama will go down as perhaps the worst president in the history of the United States!" (Obama's response: "Well, @realDonaldTrump, at least I will go down as a president.")

Read the rest

Twitter to cut hundreds of jobs

twitlarge

I still love Twitter and hope it finds a way forward. But it looks like all the potential suitors have passed on buying it, and job cuts are in the offing.

Twitter Inc., having failed to sell itself, is planning to fire about 8 percent of its workforce as the struggling social-media company prepares to go it alone for the time being. Twitter may eliminate about 300 people, the same percentage it did last year when co-founder Jack Dorsey took over as chief executive officer, according to people familiar with the matter. Planning for the cuts is still fluid and the number could change, they added. The people asked not to be identified talking about private company plans.

The other day, "George Zimmerman" was trending again. It was right there in the little box on the homepage. When you clicked on this hashtag, the second result was (and still is) an exhortation to follow a fake/ironic George Zimmerman account, with this bio:

Perhaps I get unique results for some algorithmic or settings-based reason that escapes me; it shows up irrespective of whether I have the "sensitive media" content filters checked. It looks like anyone from Salesforce or Disney who fired up Twitter last week and clicked on this promoted topical hashtag got this in their face. Maybe it's naive to think they would have been influenced by this, or that it's an easy thing to exclude at Twitter's scale. But I can't escape the nagging feeling that it being there represents a decision. Read the rest

New York Times devotes a 2-page spread to "The 281 People, Places and Things Donald Trump Has Insulted on Twitter"

cviq5rbwyaqeh56-1

[Full size]

The 281 People, Places and Things Donald Trump Has Insulted on Twitter: A Complete List [Jasmine C. Lee and Kevin Quealy/New York Times] Read the rest

Lawsuit: mayor's social media blocklists are public records

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

Miami Beach mayor Philip Levine has a history of blocking his critics on social media, including Grant Stern, who runs the Photography is Not a Crime group. Read the rest

Hillary Clinton campaign fundraising tool: auto-donate every time Trump tweets

050-056c026d-1c66-4d42-9fae-a8

The Troll Trump campaign has a simple, ingenious mechanic: it lets you pledge a small donation every time Trump posts a new tweet, meaning that the more Trump loses his temper and posts enraged tweetstorms, the more he raises for his arch-rival. (via /.) Read the rest

Ecuadoran Embassy confirms it changed its wifi password to lock out Assange

flag_of_ecuador-svg

The Ecuadoran Embassy in London has confirmed Wikileaks' accusation that it terminated Julian Assange's access to its wifi network because it disapproved of Assange and Wikileaks' "intervention in the affairs of other states" by publishing material pertaining to the impending US election. Read the rest

More posts