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Monthly Archives: February 2022

How to avoid sharing bad information about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine

MIT Technology Review: “The fast-paced online coverage of the Russian invasion of Ukraine on Wednesday followed a pattern that’s become familiar in other recent crises that have unfolded around the world. Photos, videos, and other information are posted and reshared across platforms much faster than they can be verified. The result is that falsehoods are mistaken for truth and amplified, even by well-intentioned people. This can help bad actors to terrorize innocent civilians or advance disturbing ideologies, causing real harm. Disinformation has been a prominent and explicit part of the Russian government’s campaign to justify the invasion. Russia falsely claimed that Ukrainian forces in Donbas, a city in the southeastern part of the country that harbors a large number of pro-Russian separatists, were planning violent attacks, engaging in antagonistic shelling, and committing genocide. Fake videos of those nonexistent attacks became part of a domestic propaganda campaign. (The US government, meanwhile, has been working to debunk and “prebunk” these lies.) Meanwhile, even people who are not part of such government campaigns may intentionally share bad, misleading, or false information about the invasion to promote ideological narratives, or simply to harvest clicks, with little care about the harm they’re causing. In other cases, honest mistakes made amid the fog of war take off and go viral…”

The Quiet Way Advertisers Are Tracking Your Browsing

Wired: “Creepy cookies that track all your online activity are (slowly) being eradicated. In recent years major web browsers, including Safari and Firefox, have restricted the practice. Even Chrome has realized that cookies present a privacy nightmare. But stopping them ends only one kind of online tracking—others are arguably worse. Fingerprinting, which involves gathering detailed… Continue Reading

An intro to AI, made for students

Google Blog: “Adorable, operatic blobs. A global, online guessing game. Scribbles that transform into works of art. These may not sound like they’re part of a curriculum, but learning the basics of how artificial intelligence (AI) works doesn’t have to be complicated, super-technical or boring. To celebrate Digital Learning Day, we’re releasing a new lesson… Continue Reading

Americans increasingly want to move on from COVID-19

Axios/Ipsos Coronavirus Index: “With new COVID-19 cases plummeting as the Omicron variant continues to recede, Americans report lower risk perceptions of the virus and are increasingly returning to their normal, pre-COVID life. In response, many believe the country should move towards reopening.The poll also finds that while nearly eight in ten (78%) believe we are… Continue Reading

Twitter to Label Tweets Linking to Russian State Media

Security Week: “Twitter will put warnings on tweets sharing links to Russian state-affiliated media, the platform said Monday, as Kremlin-tied outlets are accused of spreading misinformation on Moscow’s invasion of Ukraine.  Pressure is on social media giants to squelch misleading or false information about the attack, which has drawn fierce international condemnation. Kremlin-run media outlets… Continue Reading

A guide to writing accessible image captions

Mashable – Make it easier for everyone to enjoy your pretty Instagram posts and funny tweets: “Making your social media profiles accessible to the majority of people stumbling across your posts is an intentional practice. From Instagram and Twitter photo descriptions to captioning audio on your TikTok videos, you have to consciously add these accessibility… Continue Reading

The Online Security Reset Guide

Washington Post: Keeping you safe from scammers, hackers and digital threats…The Washington Post’s Help Desk has gathered the easiest and most effective tips for securing your identity, money and information online. Cybercrime isn’t going anywhere, but you can protect yourself from hacks, scams and theft with a few new habits. Call it our digital hygiene… Continue Reading

Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine: Overview of U.S. and Allied Responses

Russia’s Invasion of Ukraine: Overview of U.S. and Allied Responses, February 25, 2022: Russia launched a full-scale air, land, and sea attack on the independent and democratic state of Ukraine on February 24, 2022. The United States and its allies around the world have condemned Russia’s “unprecedented military aggression”as “unprovoked and unjustified.” On February 24,… Continue Reading

Ukraine Pushes to Unplug Russia From the Internet

Rolling Stone: “Ukrainian officials are asking a key organization responsible for the operation of the Internet to disconnect all Russian sites from the global computer network-of-networks, Rolling Stone has learned. It’s the latest attempt to turn Russia into a pariah state in retaliation for its the Kremlin’s invasion of Ukraine. Experts call it a massive… Continue Reading

The Grammarly tradeoff: Is better writing worth exposing business data?

Protocol: “Writing tools including Grammarly use data from users to train their AI. Some businesses, especially those making products or software, worry it puts their intellectual property at risk. People using writing assistants at work might love sending polished emails to colleagues or crafting smarter company social media posts. Their company’s IT and legal teams… Continue Reading

IPCC Sixth Assessment Report: Climate Change 2022

“Human-induced climate change is causing dangerous and widespread disruption in nature and affecting the lives of billions of people around the world, despite efforts to reduce the risks. People and ecosystems least able to cope are being hardest hit, said scientists in the latest Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report, Climate Change 2022: Impacts,… Continue Reading