National Poetry Month, Creative Commons, Google Drive, More: Monday Evening Buzz, April 16, 2018


Library of Congress: New Recordings Online for National Poetry Month. “National Poetry Month is here, and we’re over the moon to announce the release of 50 additional recordings from the Archive of Recorded Poetry and Literature, now available to stream online. The archive—a collection dating back to 1943, when Allen Tate was consultant in poetry—contains nearly 2,000 audio recordings of celebrated poets and writers participating in literary events at the Library of Congress, along with sessions recorded in the recording laboratory in the Library’s Jefferson Building. Most of these recordings were originally captured on magnetic tape reels and have only been accessible by visiting the Library in person.”


Creative Commons: Announcing Open Registration for CC Certificates. “In response to the growing use of CC licenses globally, and the corresponding need for open licensing expertise, Creative Commons is officially launching the CC Certificate program today. Registration for the Certificate program is now open and details are available on the Certificates website. The CC Certificate provides an-in depth study of Creative Commons licenses and open practices – helping you become an expert in open licensing and the Commons. The program is offered both as a 10-week online course starting in July 2018 as well as a week-long, in-person bootcamp in 2019.”

Lifehacker: How to Use Google Drive’s New ‘View History’ Feature. “If you use Google Docs (or Sheets, or Slides) you may have noticed a recent pop-up letting you know that ‘Editors can now see you view history.’ Without any context, the message is a little confusing—even disconcerting if you’re the paranoid type—but there’s nothing to be worried about. Here’s what you need to know about the latest feature coming to Google Drive.”


How-To Geek: The Best Ways to Automatically Back Up the Photos on Your Smartphone. “The best camera is the one you have with you, and most of the time that’s going to be your smartphone. You probably capture lots of important moments with your phone, so you also need to make sure you’re keeping those moments backed up.” Multiple comments on the article point out the non-inclusion of OneDrive.


Nieman Lab: Here’s how The New York Times is trying to preserve millions of old pages the way they were originally published. “Adobe is sunsetting the software, which powered so many early web games and videos, in December 2020; browsers like Chrome, Edge, and Safari have already choked off or limited support for Flash Player over the past few years. The fate of so many Flash games and interactives, absent proper guardians, is part of a broader problem: how to rescue work painstakingly built on now-outdated formats from the dustbin of internet history. It’s one The New York Times has been grappling with for its two decades of online content.”

Bloomberg Businessweek: Instagram Looks Like Facebook’s Best Hope. “Through the glass doors, beyond the giant camera logo and before the artisan coffee stand, visitors to Instagram’s headquarters in Menlo Park, Calif., are invited to pause and commemorate the moment. Along one wall are three brightly painted dioramas: a night sky, a moonscape, and a pink sunrise with white plastic clouds in the foreground. The depictions, evoking the company’s famous photo filters, are joined by arched doorways so guests can step between the three sets, taking a portrait in each. That this display celebrates a now instantly recognizable form—the selfies shared within Instagram’s smartphone app—is a testament to the company’s success and cultural impact. But what’s missing from this scene is any sign of Facebook.” A really deep dive.


CNET: Yahoo and AOL just gave themselves the right to read your emails (again). “Oath, the media division of Verizon that runs both AOL and Yahoo, is finally unifying the privacy policy of its two giant legacy Internet brands. That means an updated set of privacy terms and policies for hundreds of millions of users. And in an online world where privacy expectations have been radically reshaped in light of Facebook’s Cambridge Analytica mess, it’s more important than ever to read the fine print on those splash screens.”

The Guardian: Facebook and Cambridge Analytica face class action lawsuit. “British and US lawyers have launched a joint class action against Facebook, Cambridge Analytica and two other companies for allegedly misusing the personal data of more than 71 million people. The lawsuit claims the firms obtained users’ private information from the social media network to develop ‘political propaganda campaigns’ in the UK and the US.”

Associated Press: Body parts from threatened wildlife widely sold on Facebook. “Facebook is displaying advertisements for well-known American corporations on group pages operated by overseas wildlife traffickers illegally selling the body parts of threatened animals, including elephant ivory, rhino horn and tiger teeth. In a secret complaint filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission, wildlife preservation advocates allege that Facebook’s failure to stop illicit traders using its service for illegal activity violates the social network’s responsibilities as a publicly traded company.”


TechCrunch: Facebook shouldn’t block you from finding friends on competitors. “Twitter, Vine, Voxer, MessageMe. Facebook has repeatedly cut off competitors from its feature for finding your Facebook friends on their apps… after jumpstarting its own social graph by convincing people to upload their Gmail contacts. Meanwhile, Facebook’s Download Your Information tool merely exports a text list of friends’ names you can’t use elsewhere. As Congress considers potential regulation following Mark Zuckerberg’s testimonies, it should prioritize leveling the playing field for aspiring alternatives to Facebook and letting consumers choose where to social network. And as a show of good faith and argument against it abusing its monopoly, Facebook should make our friend list truly portable.” Good evening, Internet…

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