Daily Californian, Native American Heritage Month, Facebook, More: Sunday Buzz, November 20, 2016

The headline is right – this the Sunday Buzz. Monday coming soon. Sorry, technical difficulties over the weekend.


Over at UC Berkeley, there’s a project underway to digitize student newspaper The Daily Californian. But more than that: “Beyond the task of digitizing every Daily Cal issue, we are also working to deploy technologies such as open-source optical character recognition that will make our archives searchable and taggable. In doing so, we hope to serve as a resource to other student newspapers and organizations beginning the project of digitizing their own papers. We also hope to give the public the opportunity to engage with past stories like never before, allowing readers to explore how key issues were reported throughout the years and understand the historical Bay Area through the wealth of knowledge contained in our archives.”

To celebrate Native American Heritage Month, Google has added several items to Google Expeditions. “To celebrate Native culture and spread awareness about its richness and history, we’ve added several Google Expeditions that explore various aspects of Indian Country, allowing students all over the globe to learn about topics ranging from Southwest tribes to powwows to the Battle of the Little Bighorn. Through Expeditions, students can virtually visit Crow Fair, often referred to as ‘The Teepee Capital of the World,’ where 1,500 teepees line the banks of the Little Bighorn River in Montana. Through this virtual visit, they can experience traditional tribal dancing, a horse parade and a rodeo — all moments of celebration that help preserve Native American heritage.”


Quartz: Facebook’s detailed open-source maps show the gaps in global internet connectivity. “To bring people the internet, first you have to figure out where there is no internet. That’s why Facebook this week released a series of maps that begin the process of charting the gaps in access and connectivity around the world. The first set of maps, made available on Nov. 16, include Pretoria in South Africa, Lilongwe in Malawi, and the Ghanaian capital Accra, as well as cities in Haiti and Sri Lanka.”


WIRED: Coders Think They Can Burst Your Filter Bubble with Tech. “As Americans increasnigly live their lives online, they risk encountering people they disagree with less than ever. Digital lives are circumscribed by algorithms and social media networks that create separate but homogenous red or blue realities. Filter bubbles are a problem technology didn’t create but certainly seems to exacerbate. Now, technologists are trying to use software to burst those same bubbles.”

NPR: Post-Election, Overwhelmed Facebook Users Unfriend, Cut Back. “Facebook is a source of news for a majority of American adults, but in the vitriol and propaganda of the 2016 election, its proverbial public square for many users has devolved into a never-ending Thanksgiving-dinner debate — or an omnipresent Speakers’ Corner. As [Michael] Lowder says his father put it, opining on social media is the equivalent of shouting off a soapbox in the street: a declaration, rather than discussion.”


From Barbados Today: Social media hampering death notification process in Barbados. “The indiscriminate use of social media to display harrowing images of fatalities is posing serious challenges to the Royal Barbados Police Force (RPBF) as it pertains to the delicate task of notifying relatives of victims. Assistant Commissioner of Police Lila Strickland said the rise in the use of platforms such as Facebook and Instagram sometimes means the families of accident and crime victims find out before lawmen have an opportunity to properly inform them.”


From the New York Times: Quit Social Media. Your Career May Depend on It. “I’m a millennial computer scientist who also writes books and runs a blog. Demographically speaking I should be a heavy social media user, but that is not the case. I’ve never had a social media account. At the moment, this makes me an outlier, but I think many more people should follow my lead and quit these services. There are many issues with social media, from its corrosion of civic life to its cultural shallowness, but the argument I want to make here is more pragmatic: You should quit social media because it can hurt your career.” Good morning, Internet…

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1 reply »

  1. I quit Facebook the other day, at least until after January. I haven’t done any active commentary on issues for several years, but I could see friends (both real-world and virtual) and family fighting and causing lots of hurt feelings all round. I’d just had enough. I couldn’t stand by and watch this stuff, so I put it on hold, in hopes things may settle down after the inauguration.

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