Brazil Deforestation, Archival Footage, Hurricane Pollution, More: Thursday Buzz, September 14, 2017


Reuters: Bunge, partners launch Brazil database to combat deforestation. “Bunge Inc and partners on Tuesday launched an online database aimed at helping companies make investment and purchasing decisions that discourage farmers from cutting down trees for arable land. The Portuguese-language database … currently has data on Brazil’s Cerrado and will later include the Amazon region. The information can be used to assess the social and environmental risks of contributing to deforestation through soybean planting expansion in Brazil, the world’s largest exporter of the oilseeds.”

PRNewswire: Media Marketplace Pond5 Debuts World’s Largest Collection of Licensable Royalty-Free Archival Footage (PRESS RELEASE). “Pond5, the world’s leading marketplace for licensing royalty-free footage and other media, today announced the launch of its archival footage collection — the largest of its kind — now available to producers and creative professionals across the globe. Expertly curated by international historians, the new Pond5 Archival Collection is one of the most comprehensive video libraries of historical moments and everyday life from the past 100 years, including rare footage spanning the 20th century, from major global events to authentic scenes of everyday life. Highlights from the collection include stunning footage of World War II, the Space Race, and the 20th century’s most important world leaders. Also featured are a wealth of clips acquired from European footage agency Framepool, ranging from rarely seen historical moments to home video footage of daily life from throughout the decades — much of which is now exclusive to Pond5.”

Civicist: New Spill Tracker Enlists Crowd To Help Monitor Pollution After Hurricanes. “After Hurricane Harvey hit Texas, a nonprofit organization that uses satellite imagery to monitor the environment launched a tool for citizens to report pollution caused by flooding. Built on the crowdmapping platform Ushahidi, the Harvey Spill Tracker maps reports of oil, chemical, or hazardous waste spills and other incidents based on satellite images, eyewitness accounts, and National Response Center alerts. Later today the organization will release an updated version that expands the region covered to parts of the country impacted by Hurricane Irma.”


SEO Roundtable: Google Wants You To Ignore The Cache Date. “Google’s John Mueller once before told us to ignore this cache date when it comes to thinking about when GoogleBot last crawled the site or the page. But in this case above, John is simply saying ignore the date, it doesn’t help you in any way for SEO purposes.” If the cache date is not reliable HOW ABOUT YOU JUST REMOVE IT.


TechCrunch: Everything Apple announced at its iPhone X keynote. This is the first roundup article I could find. Unfortunately it’s a gallery / slideshow. But if you want to get the basics on what Apple announced without buckets of hype, here ya go.


Smithsonian: This Replica of a Tlingit Killer Whale Hat Is Spurring Dialogue About Digitization. “In all fairness, the 3D-milled replica of the original Killer Whale hat is a meticulously crafted feat of modern technology. Innovation, however, does not equate to the spiritual significance embodied by the real Kéet S’aaxw, and this differentiation is important: It’s why the Killer Whale hat (and its copy), the southeastern Alaska-based Dakl’aweidi clan and the Smithsonian Institution have become embroiled in the challenges of the ongoing issues surrounding repatriation, artifact digitization and cultural heritage.”

Miami Herald: With no word from Keys after Irma, worried relatives turn to social media. “They’ve created group Facebook pages to trade information. Some have scoured amateur and news video clips on Twitter for any familiar landmarks. Others have turned to calling and messaging reporters in the disaster zone. For displaced Florida Keys residents and relatives of those stuck on the islands, the search for information about the effects of Hurricane Irma has become increasingly frustrating because all cell service and internet connections are down.”


Wired: Yelp Claims Google Broke Promise To Antitrust Regulators. “YELP IS ACCUSING Google, its longtime rival in local search, of scraping photographs of local businesses from Yelp and other sites for use in Google search results, violating promises that Google made in 2012 as part of a settlement to end a Federal Trade Commission investigation.”

VentureBeat: China to create national cybersecurity database. “China said on Wednesday it will create a national data repository for information on cyber attacks and require telecom firms, internet companies and domain name providers to report threats to it.”


Sunlight Foundation: Technology companies should publish political advertising files online. “The United States of America has now fallen off the online disclosure cliff that Sunlight has warned of for years: the lack of transparency for political ad spending and related activity online created a significant vulnerability in our public accountability laws. While more transparency was rendered to TV stations, ‘dark ads’ have flourished online. Last week’s reporting confirms that Facebook was used by Russians used to influence the 2016 election. The full extent of that interference is still not understood publicly, even now.”

Newswise: Scientists Want to Study Your Tweets; Is It Ethical?. “Did you know researchers are reading and analyzing your tweets and Facebook posts in the name of science? If so, how do you feel about it? If you feel unsettled, what would make you feel better? What’s legal and what’s not in the age of big-data research? And even if it is legal, is it ethical?” Social media helps students learn scientific argumentation better, study says. “Adults often bemoan the amount of time young people spend staring at a screen and browsing social media. But social media can not only be a way to teach students elements of the scientific process, those who took part in a program to learn scientific argumentation through social media learned the components of argumentation better than their peers who did not, a University of Kansas study has found.” Good morning, Internet…

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