Revolutionary War Records, Move Mirror, Snapcash, More: Monday Evening Buzz, July 23, 2018


South Carolina Department of Archives and History: SCDAH Announces Digitization Of Over 11,000 Revolutionary War Records. “The South Carolina Department of Archives and History (SCDAH) is pleased to announce that the records series “Accounts Audited of Claims Growing out of the Revolution in South Carolina 1775-1856” is now active and images are available on the Online Records Index. This record consists of 11,170 documents presented by citizens to the treasury in support of claims for military service, supplies, and other contributions rendered during the latter part of the Revolutionary War. Most of the files contain an auditor’s cover paper, which includes the name of claimant, a brief description of their service provided, and the amount of their claim and its adjusted value. Additionally, if an indent was issued, its number and the claimant’s signature verifying its receipt were also included as well as receipts and affidavits to the validity of the claim.”

Google Blog: Move Mirror: You move and 80,000 images move with you. “There are a lot of impressive uses for machine learning these days, like detecting objects in images, helping to detect diseases, and even enabling cars to drive themselves. But AI can also be used in more playful ways. That’s why we made Move Mirror—an AI Experiment that lets you explore pictures in a fun new way, just by moving around. Move in front of your webcam and Move Mirror will match your real-time movements to hundreds of images of people doing similar poses around the world.”


Snapchat will shut down Snapcash, forfeiting to Venmo
. “Snapcash ended up a way to pay adult performers for private content over Snapchat, not just a way to pay your friends. But Snapchat will abandon the peer-to-peer payment space on August 30th. Code buried in Snapchat’s Android app includes a ‘Snapcash deprecation message’ that displays ‘Snapcash will no longer be available after %s [date]’. Shutting down the feature would bring an end to Snapchat’s four-year partnership with Square to power the feature for sending people money.”


Ars Technica: Dark Patterns are designed to trick you (and they’re all over the Web). “It happens to the best of us. After looking closely at a bank statement or cable bill, suddenly a small, unrecognizable charge appears. Fine print sleuthing soon provides the answer—somehow, you accidentally signed up for a service. Whether it was an unnoticed pre-marked checkbox or an offhanded verbal agreement at the end of a long phone call, now a charge arrives each month because naturally the promotion has ended. If the possibility of a refund exists, it’ll be found at the end of 45 minutes of holding music or a week’s worth of angry e-mails.”

New York Times: What Stays on Facebook and What Goes? The Social Network Cannot Answer. “Facebook was once the most nimble company of its generation. The speed at which it adapted to every challenge was legendary. It needed only about a decade to go from a dorm-room start-up to the largest and most influential communications platform in the world. But it’s been two years since an American presidential campaign in which the company was a primary vector for misinformation and state-sponsored political interference — and Facebook still seems paralyzed over how to respond.”

Poynter: Fact-checkers have debunked this fake news site 80 times. It’s still publishing on Facebook.. “YourNewsWire is one of the most popular fake news publishers in the world. The website, run by two men in Los Angeles, regularly pumps out hoaxes and conspiracy theories. It has promoted the Pizzagate conspiracy theory and has been the subject of a glossy profile by The Hollywood Reporter. And despite being debunked at least 80 times, and having its posts fact-checked as false through Facebook’s fact-checking partnership at least 45 times, YourNewsWire is still publishing on the platform — amassing hundreds of thousands of engagements each month.”

Motherboard: Why Is Google Translate Spitting Out Sinister Religious Prophecies?. “Type the word ‘dog’ into Google Translate 19 times, request that the nonsensical message be flipped from Maori into English, and out pops what appears to be a garbled religious prophecy. ‘Doomsday Clock is three minutes at twelve,’ it reads. ‘We are experiencing characters and a dramatic developments in the world, which indicate that we are increasingly approaching the end times and Jesus’ return.'”


Wired: How A Facebook Group For Sexual Assault Survivors Became A Tool For Harassment. “WIRED spoke to five women who were in the group, including Amanda, some of whom provided screenshots to support their accounts. They described harassment by many of those new profiles, who threatened in some cases to contact their abusers or to call child protective services regarding their children. One troll commented that they had collected all of the women’s posts about abuse in a file, implying they could still be released even if they were deleted from Facebook.”

Techdirt: ‘Smart’ TVs Remain The Poster Child For Dismal Privacy, Transparency & Security Standards. “The dumpster fire that passes for security and privacy standards in the internet of things space is by now pretty well understood. It’s also pretty clear that in this sector, ‘smart TV’ vendors have been among the laziest sectors around in terms of making sure private consumer data is adequately encrypted, and that consumers understand that their viewing habits and even some in-room conversations are being hoovered up and monetized, usually sloppily.”


Nieman Lab: “Angry face” Facebook: Rage now trumps “love” in reactions to legislators’ Facebook posts. “Facebook has gotten angrier since the election: Facebook users are increasingly using the ‘angry’ reaction in response to legislators’ Facebook posts, Pew finds.” Good evening, Internet…

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