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Category Archives: Social Media

How the Media Industry Keeps Losing the Future

The New York Times [unpaywalled]- “Roger Fidler tried his best, but the excellent business of journalism is gone for good. Can the idea of “news” survive in a digital world?…Cutbacks were just announced at Law360, The Intercept and the youth-oriented video site NowThis, which laid off half its staff. The tech news site Engadget, which comprehensively tracks tech layoffs, laid off its top editors and other staff members. Condé Nast and Time are shedding employees. The continued existence of Vice Media, once valued at $5.7 billion, and Sports Illustrated, in another era the most influential sports publication, is uncertain. The Los Angeles Times and The Washington Post eliminated hundreds of journalists between them. One out of four newspapers that existed in 2005 no longer does. The slow crash of newspapers and magazines would be of limited interest save for one thing: Traditional media had at its core the exalted and difficult mission of communicating information about the world. From investigative reports on government to coverage of local politicians, the news served to make all the institutions and individuals covered a bit more transparent and, possibly, more honest. The advice columns, movie reviews, recipes, stock data, weather report and just about everything else in newspapers moved easily online — except the news itself. Local and regional coverage had a hard time establishing itself as a paying proposition. Now there are signs that the whole concept of “news” is fading. Asked where they get their local news, nearly as many respondents to a Gallup poll said social media as mentioned newspapers and magazines. A recent attempt to give people free subscriptions to their local papers in Pennsylvania as part of an academic study drew almost no takers…”

Publishing for Profit: Selecting the Best Publisher

Via LLRX – Publishing for Profit: Selecting the Best Publisher – Jerry Lawson offers his expert advise on how lawyers (and other ambitious people) can profit by publishing. One method is to begin by focusing on your desired result. What are the best publishers for you and your work product? Lawson offers a couple of ways… Continue Reading

Tumblr and WordPress to Sell Users’ Data to Train AI Tools

404Media: “Tumblr and WordPress.com are preparing to sell user data to Midjourney and OpenAI, according to a source with internal knowledge about the deals and internal documentation referring to the deals. The exact types of data from each platform going to each company are not spelled out in documentation we’ve reviewed, but internal communications reviewed… Continue Reading

Where democracy is most at risk

The Economist: Four lessons from EIU’s new ranking of democracies – “In theory this year should be a triumphant one for democracy. More people are expected to vote in national elections in 2024 than ever before. But many elections will be problematic. This year’s democracy index published by EIU, our sister company, shows that only… Continue Reading

When Media Outlets Shutter, Why Are the Websites Wiped, Too?

Slate: “On Thursday morning, a rumor started to circulate among media workers. Vice senior editor Janus Rose disclosed that staffers were in possession of an anonymous tip that management planned to shutter Vice—and delete the entire website. Employees had noticed the company disabled a Google feature that allowed them to download their emails. “Fun times… Continue Reading

The Supreme Court is about to decide the future of online speech

The Verge: “Social media companies have long made their own rules about the content they allow on their sites. But a pair of cases set to be argued before the Supreme Court on Monday will test the limits of that freedom, examining whether they can be legally required to host users’ speech. The cases, Moody… Continue Reading

Instagram’s Uneasy Rise as a News Site

The New York Times [read free]: “In this year’s presidential election, more people are turning to Instagram for news, even as the platform tries de-emphasizing “political content.”…Mosheh Oinounou of Mo News is part of a crop of personalities who have figured out how to package information and deliver it on Instagram, increasingly turning the social… Continue Reading

Silicon Valley has its own ascendant political ideology. It’s past time we call it what it is.

The Rise of Techno-Authoritarianism by Adrienne LaFrance [The Atlantic; read free] “Silicon Valley still attracts many immensely talented people who strive to do good, and who are working to realize the best possible version of a more connected, data-rich global society. Even the most deleterious companies have built some wonderful tools. But these tools, at scale,… Continue Reading

Politics makes bastards of us all: Why moral judgment is politically situational

Kyle Hull, Clarisse Warren, Kevin Smith. Politics makes bastards of us all: Why moral judgment is politically situational [full text free to read]. Political Psychology, 2024; DOI: 10.1111/pops.12954 – “Moral judgment is politically situational—people are more forgiving of transgressive copartisans and more likely to behave punitively and unethically toward political opponents. Such differences are widely observed,… Continue Reading