Copycat Legislation, Anti-Semitism, News Audio, More: Wednesday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, November 20, 2019


Center for Public Integrity: Puppies, Phones And Porn: How ‘Model Legislation’ Affects Consumers’ Lives. “Earlier this year, the Center for Public Integrity, USA TODAY and the Arizona Republic analyzed model statehouse bills to take the first nationwide accounting of how prolific copycat legislation has become. Today, the news organizations publicly released a new model legislation tracker that goes deeper, identifying copycat legislation by comparing statehouse bills to each other — and making that information accessible to the public.”

KYW News Radio: New website a ‘glossary’ of hate to expose anti-Semitism. “A new website from the American Jewish Committee is pointing out the language and anti-semitic tropes online and on social media that they say are leading to a rise in bigotry and violence.”


CNET: Google partners with publishers to bring audio news feeds to the Assistant. “Google on Tuesday said it’s bringing personalized audio news playlists to its Assistant software. The new feature will use the search giant’s algorithms and vast amounts of user data to tee up a feed of news stories tailor-made for individual people, based on their interests.”


Snopes: Google’s Do-Good Arm Tries to Make Up for Everything Else. “Google’s head of philanthropy says the company is having ‘a lot of conversations’ internally amid worries about the tech giant’s bottomless appetite for consumer data and how it uses its algorithms.”

Journalism .co .uk: Instagram news memes: explore new ways to attract younger audiences. “As younger people increasingly turn away from traditional media formats and more towards social media, news organisations are exploring new ways to remain relevant. Danish local news station TV2 Østjylland thinks it has found the answer in memes.”


Reuters: Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple offer defense in congressional antitrust probe. “Four top U.S. tech companies, Alphabet’s Google, Facebook, and Apple, responded to questions from a congressional committee by defending their practices and declining to answer some questions.”

Ars Technica: Password data for ~2.2 million users of currency and gaming sites dumped online. “Password data and other personal information belonging to as many as 2.2 million users of two websites—one a cryptocurrency wallet service and the other a gaming bot provider—have been posted online, according to Troy Hunt, the security researcher behind the Have I Been Pwned breach notification service. One haul includes personal information for as many as 1.4 million accounts from the GateHub cryptocurrency wallet service. The other contains data for about 800,000 accounts on RuneScape bot provider EpicBot.”


Phys .org: Platforms can’t settle on ‘appropriate’ engagement-boosting practices . “Is it ok to use keywords that you know people are searching for, but not ok for ‘bots’ to direct traffic to your site? Will you be punished, suspended or banned from Google, Facebook and Instagram because how you strategize with the algorithm is deemed illegitimate? Researchers at Rutgers University say more consistent standards are needed for advertisers, journalists, influencers and marketers seeking to boost their visibility on platforms such as Google, Facebook and Instagram.”

The College of New Jersey: Civil engineering students and their professor apply big data to understand New Jersey’s bumper-to-bumper lifestyle.. “On a 100-degree day in late July, civil engineering professor Tom Brennan and three students in his research lab made it snow. No, indoor precipitation was not in the forecast: the snow storm was a computer simulation of an actual one that blew in pretty much out of nowhere on the afternoon of November 15, 2018, creating traffic nightmares throughout New Jersey.”

EurekAlert: Carnegie Mellon system locates shooters using smartphone video. “Researchers at Carnegie Mellon University have developed a system that can accurately locate a shooter based on video recordings from as few as three smartphones. When demonstrated using three video recordings from the 2017 mass shooting in Las Vegas that left 58 people dead and hundreds wounded, the system correctly estimated the shooter’s actual location — the north wing of the Mandalay Bay hotel.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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