Email Archiving, Superpod, FamilySearch, More: Monday ResearchBuzz, January 7, 2019


State Archives of North Carolina: $1.1M grant from Mellon Foundation will facilitate advances in email curation . “The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill has received a grant for $1.1 million from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation for a project to develop a toolset that will enable institutions to more quickly and efficiently process emails included in born-digital collections. The UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) is partnering with the State Archives of North Carolina under the NC Department of Natural and Cultural Resources (NC DNCR) for the two-year project, which will launch in January. The Review, Appraisal, and Triage of Mail (RATOM) project’s goals are particularly significant for organizations, including libraries, archives and museums (LAMs), that need to provide public access to records while protecting private information.”

Search Engine Land: Google buys expert community and ‘answer engine’ Superpod for $60 million. “Google has acquired another ‘answer engine.’ The company paid roughly $60 million for Superpod, predominantly for the team, according to published reports. Superpod matched audience questions and expert answers across a broad range of topics.”

FamilySearch: What’s Coming to FamilySearch in 2019. “The popular, free genealogy website,, has many plans for the new year, including enhanced record search and Family Tree search capabilities, new online discovery experiences, and more! In addition to over 300 million additional historical records and images for family history discoveries, look for the following new offerings in 2019.”


Search Engine Journal: Free SEO Site Audit Tools. “There are many free tools available for site auditing tests. These free SEO Site Auditing tools provide data that is complementary to paid site auditing tools. These SEO tools are well worth bookmarking regardless of whether you pay for a site auditing tools or not.” Decent annotation.


Scoop Culture: Radical Archiving Project Announced. “The Radical Aotearoa Digital Archive, or RADAR Project, has been announced in Dunedin with a launch date set for next month. RADAR is a project aimed at preserving and promulgating the publishing culture of the radical left in New Zealand, primarily by maintaining a collection of digitized materials online.”

South China Morning Post: LinkedIn reverses course after censoring Chinese profile page of US-based human rights activist Zhou Fengsuo. “LinkedIn has restored access to the profile page of a prominent Chinese human rights activist, a day after the career networking site told him his page in China had been censored in accordance with the company’s commitment to adhering to the ‘requirements of the Chinese government’.”

CBC: The influencers: How Ottawa uses popular online hosts to get its messages out
. “Florence Lavoie is 22 years old, works at home producing and distributing French language videos on YouTube. It’s lightweight, slice-of-life stuff, mostly: tips on makeup, dating, shopping and diet (one September post ranking lip balm flavours picked up 34,000 views). She’s been posting videos online since age 10. Her bubbly, upbeat on-camera persona has earned her north of 85,000 subscribers — enough to make YouTube her full-time job, enough to bring her to the attention of the Government of Canada, which hired her in March to produce and distribute a short online video warning young people about the dangers of opioid abuse.”


The Verge: The Weather Channel app unlawfully obtained user location data, says prosecutor. “The Weather Channel app misled millions of users into allowing it to access their personal location data, profiting off of the data for commercial purposes, the city attorney of Los Angeles alleged in a lawsuit filed on Thursday.”

Make Tech Easier: Tool That Can Mass-Hijack Google Chromecast Was Uploaded to Github. “You might not agree with this method, but the goal was to show people that they need to not leave their Google Chromecast devices connected to the Internet when not in use. The Crashcast tool was published on Github as a warning to Chromecast owners. It’s the same vulnerability that hackers used to take over Chromecast devices and broadcast a PewDiePie message.”

The Register: Fake ‘U’s! Phishing creeps use homebrew fonts as message ciphers to evade filters . “Security house Proofpoint reports this week that miscreants hoping to steal login credentials from customers of ‘a major retail bank’ were able to hide their phishing emails from automatic detection tools by seemingly scrambling their messages into gibberish. Once rendered in an email client, the messages appear as coherent text, thanks to a custom font unscrambling the letters.”


Nieman Lab: In 2018, push alerts featured less yelling and more thinking. “More push alerts, less breaking news, less emoji: An analysis of 30 publishers’ mobile notifications shows that the infrastructure of alerts has stayed the same but newsroom managers are thinking differently about how to use them.” Anybody remember PointCast? Anybody? … I’m old.

Dermatology Times: Improving the reporting of social media recruitment for clinical trials. “The popularity of social media has created a new opportunity for the research community to recruit study participants. Recent data indicate that nearly 70% of U.S. adults use some social media1. Coinciding with the surge of social media adoption, study teams increasingly report the use of social media to enhance recruitment in clinical research with promising but mixed results2,3. Recruitment of study participants is a significant problem, particularly in clinical trials. It remains a critical roadblock to successful clinical and translational research4,5.” This article has several references, thus the numbers. Good morning, Internet…

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