March Madness, Twitter, Windows Updates, More: Sunday Buzz, April 1, 2018

ResearchBuzz strives to remain an April Fools Day free zone. If you read a link here and realize I got snookered, please let me know. I will repeat this request through Monday’s issues.


Variety: NCAA March Madness: Twitter to Live-Stream Final Four Weekend ‘Watch Parties’. “What’s the next best thing to live-streaming actual 2018 NCAA March Madness Final Four games? For Twitter, it’s hosting a live video and chat hub with video commentary and real-time tweets for hoops fans to follow during the men’s college basketball championship.”

The Register: Microsoft patches patch for Meltdown bug patch: Windows 7, Server 2008 rushed an emergency fix . “Microsoft today issued an emergency security update to correct a security update it issued earlier this month to correct a security update it issued in January and February.”

The Verge: This is Facebook’s self-defense plan for the 2018 midterm elections. “Facebook has a four-part plan to protect its platform from malicious attacks during the 2018 US midterm elections, company executives said today. In a conference call with reporters, representatives from Facebook’s security, product, and advertising teams laid out their strategy for preventing the kinds of problems that plagued it during the 2016 campaign. While most bad actors are motivated by profits, executives said, state-sponsored attackers continue in their efforts to manipulate public opinion using posts on Facebook.”


MakeUseOf: How to Work Offline From Any Device: The Essential Tools You’ll Need. “Do you need an effective way to help keep your focus on your work? Unplug from the internet. You know it works. But first, you’ll need to set up your computer with a few essential tools that will help you get a big chunk of your work done offline. Let’s round up 10 potential ones for you.” Nice roundup!


I normally try to put no more than four links in every given section. But I’m breaking my own rule today, partially because this is such a good article and partially because I do this for posterity. Posterity, if you want a good overview of why 2018 is just so weird, read this. The Verge: How a tweet about a chicken and a hair dryer got its own news cycle. “On March 21st, New Yorker food correspondent Helen Rosner tweeted a photo of her pointing a Dyson Supersonic Hair Dryer at a raw chicken. She was trying to remove moisture and maximize the crispiness of the chicken skin before roasting it, and she wanted to share her snow day plans with her followers. But this story is not about chicken. Well, it’s kind of about chicken. It’s also about Twitter and digital media and misogyny and The Daily Mail. ‘Hair dryer chicken’ is in the midst of its own internet life cycle, and Rosner doesn’t really have anything to do with it anymore.”

Poynter: In the era of fake news, is April Fools’ Day funny anymore?. “On April Fools’ Day, real news organizations used to publish fake news. The Capital Times reported in 1933 that the dome had toppled off the Wisconsin statehouse. In 1977, The Guardian published a lengthy travel feature story on the fictional San Serriffe islands. PC/Computing magazine covered a fake bill banning the use of the internet while drunk in 1994. But in 2018, April Fools’ Day feels different.”

The Next Web: Ethereum’s creator is mad at Facebook for not removing fake profiles of him. “Ethereum founder Vitalik Buterin has been dealing with tons of fraudulent Twitter impersonators seeking to steal cryptocurrency from naive investors – but it seems the trend has gradually caught on to other social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. The young entrepreneur has taken to Twitter to criticize Facebook and Instagram for allowing clearly fraudulent accounts to exist on their platforms. Buterin also took a moment to ask his followers to report the fake accounts, because he does not have one himself.”

Mashable: TV’s ridiculously fake websites and apps are things of beauty. “One of the most special things in television universes are the ridiculously fake apps and websites that characters use. Generally, there are two types of these fake internet-ings. The first are the type that are just stand-ins for real-world sites and apps that would’ve cost the production company licensing fees otherwise. The second are the type that exist solely within the fictional universe and serve their unique storyline purposes.” Here for April Fools Day.

TubeFilter: As YouTube Cracks Down On Firearm Videos, Niche Video Platforms Look To Seize An Opportunity. “YouTube’s recent restrictions on firearm content, which include bans on videos that link to the sale of guns and videos that teach viewers how to install attachments like high-capacity magazines, have already had dramatic effects on the online video community’s hunters, sport shooters, and weapons enthusiasts. As those creators try to figure out if they will be able to have a future on the world’s top video site, several other niche players are looking to fill the void. Full30, a site specifically dedicated to firearm content, has announced an expansion, while the Utah Gun Exchange, a retail platform, has positioned itself to enter the video industry as well.”


TechCrunch: New York City is launching public cybersecurity tools to keep residents from getting hacked . “In a week of harrowing city-level cyber attacks, New York is taking some precautions. While the timing is coincidental, New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio just announced that the city will introduce the first tools in its suite of cybersecurity offerings to protect residents against malicious online activity, particularly on mobile devices.”

Courthouse News Service: Facebook Urged To Reconsider Harvesting of Facial Data. “As it faces an onslaught of fresh criticism over its handling of private data, a federal judge urged Facebook on Thursday to look long and hard at its practice of harvesting facial data from online photos.”


EOS: Five Weird Archives That Scientists Use to Study Past Climates. “Long-lived trees aren’t necessarily found everywhere. You can’t take an ice core in a desert. As a result, evidence for climate fluctuations on local and regional scales is lacking around the world. To solve this puzzle, scientists get creative. They’re examining nature for whatever they can find that lays down layer after layer over a large chunk of time in relatively undisturbed environments. And in the process, they’ve stumbled on some new, intriguing archives. Here are five of the weirdest ones we’ve found.” Aqueducts! Whale earwax! Good morning, Internet…

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