Sunday CoronaBuzz, March 15, 2020: 31 pointers to articles, new resources, useful stuff, and more.

This newsletter now has its own Twitter account at @buzz_corona , if you want to see individual items as they’re added. I’m only doing one of these newsletters a day so they’re going to be enormous. Wash your hands. I love you.


PR Newswire: Elsevier Gives Full Access to its Content on its COVID-19 Information Center for PubMed Central and Other Public Health Databases to Accelerate Fight Against Coronavirus (PRESS RELEASE). “From today, Elsevier, a global leader in research publishing and information analytics specializing in science and health, is making all its research and data content on its COVID-19 Information Center available to PubMed Central, the archive of biomedical and lifescience at the US National Institutes of Health’s National Library of Medicine, and the other publicly funded repositories globally, such as the WHO COVID database, for as long as needed while the public health emergency is ongoing. This additional access allows researchers to use artificial intelligence to keep up with the rapidly growing body of literature and identify trends as countries around the world address this global health crisis.”

Administration for Community Living: Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). “As guidance is updated, ACL will post or link to it on this page and share it through the ACL Updates email service. In addition, ACL recommends following the guidance issued by state and local health departments, and watch the CDC website for the latest national information.” This page appears to be updated frequently.

A new Omeka collection, the title of which will do wonderful things for your blood pressure: A Journal Of The Plague Year: An Archive Of COVID19. From the about page: “Join us in creating this repository of our uncertain moment. We are acting not just as historians, but as chroniclers, recorders, memoirists, image collectors. Contribute your experience and impressions of how CoVid19 has affected our lives, from the mundane to the extraordinary, including the ways things haven’t changed at all. Contribute text, images, video, tweets, texts, Facebook posts, Instagram or Snapchat memes, and screenshots of the news and emails–anything that speaks to paradoxes of the moment. Imagine, as we are, what future historian might need to write about and understand this historical moment.”

From the Ohio Department of Health but not limited to Ohio: COVID-19 Checklists. Searchable by keyword, fast to read and easy to digest, good stuff.

Breaking News Ireland: ‘We won’t see anyone stuck’ by Covid-19: New website coordinates self-isolation helpers. “What started yesterday as a Twitter trend: #selfisolationhelp is now a website. Building on Helen O’Rahilly’s work on twitter, Johnathan Randall has developed a website to link self-isolation volunteers.”

Framingham Source: CatholicTV Network Launches New Website To View Daily Masses. “The CatholicTV Network will launch a new, simplified website where viewers can easily watch daily Masses from the CatholicTV chapel, yesterday, March 13…. viewers can watch the Mass in English every day from Sunday to Friday and the Mass in Spanish every Sunday.”


Ubergizmo: You Can Now Play Pokemon GO Without Having To Leave The House. “To prevent their players from potentially catching the virus, Niantic has announced that they will be modifying some of the game’s mechanics that will temporarily allow players to enjoy Pokemon GO from the safety of their homes, at least to a certain extent. For example, there will be an increase in the number of habitats so that players will be able to find new Pokemon GO while playing closer to their homes.”

Mass Live: Coronavirus and colleges: U-Haul offers free moving services to students impacted by COVID-19 outbreak. “The moving and storage business will be extending 30 days of self-storage at no cost to all college and university students impacted by unforeseen changes to their campuses’ schedules, according to a statement from company President John Taylor.”

Route Fifty: How to Understand Your State’s Coronavirus Numbers. “The main thing to do is orient yourself, so you know where to find the numbers. It’s different for every state. Most post a table, some write them in text, still others generate a PDF, as Massachusetts does. We’re encouraging states to publish and update a table of data, and have seen promising changes from many states, including New Jersey, Louisiana, and Colorado.”

Duke University Libraries Preservation Underground: Working From Home Options for Conservation Labs. “As the Covid-19 virus spreads, we have started planning for work that Conservation staff can do at home should we be told to stay off campus. As of this publication we have not been asked to stay home but preservation professionals prepare for the worst and hope for the best. This has been a thought provoking exercise and everyone has contributed to our brainstorming. We wanted to share what we have drafted to date in case any other labs are in a similar situation.”

NPR: The New Coronavirus Can Live On Surfaces For 2-3 Days — Here’s How To Clean Them. “How long can the new coronavirus live on a surface, like say, a door handle, after someone infected touches it with dirty fingers? A study out this week finds that the virus can survive on hard surfaces such as plastic and stainless steel for up to 72 hours and on cardboard for up to 24 hours.”

The Auburn Plainsman: Charter Spectrum to offer free internet services to students affected by coronavirus closures. “Charter Spectrum is offering free Spectrum broadband and Wi-Fi access for 60 days to households with K-12 or college students who do not already have a Spectrum broadband subscription, according to a release from Charter Spectrum. To enroll in this service call 1-844-488-8395. The company is waving installation fees for new student households.”

Screen Rant: Coronavirus: Never Forget To Wash Your Hands With This iPhone App. “One of the easiest ways people can help to reduce the spread of coronavirus is to regularly wash their hands, and there’s now a new iPhone app available to remind them.”

Pointer to a Covid Twitter List in this article from BuzzMachine: In this crisis, God bless the net. “What we need most right now is expertise. Thanks to the net, it’s not at all hard to find. I spent a few hours putting together a COVID Twitter list of more than 200 experts: doctors, epidemiologists, academics, policymakers, and journalists. It is already invaluable to me, giving me and anyone who cares to follow it news, facts, data, education, context, answers. Between social and search, good information is easy to find — and disinformation easy to deflate and ignore.”

Audubon: The Joy of Birds. “Birds bring us happiness in so many ways—especially in trying times. Whether you’re just looking for a lift, unable to enjoy the outdoors, or in desperate need of distraction, look no further than this birdy care package, from Audubon to you.” Photography, humor, activities, virtual tours…

BusinessWire: OpenSesame Offers Free Access to Coronavirus Preparedness and Remote Work Training (PRESS RELEASE). “OpenSesame, the global elearning innovator, announced unlimited free access to coronavirus preparedness and remote work training for any organization through 15 May 2020. The offer includes elearning courses in multiple languages on preventing coronavirus and other illnesses as well as working and managing employees remotely.”

Playbill: Metropolitan Opera, After Shutting Its Doors, Will Offer Free Streams From Live in HD Catalog. “Beginning March 16, the Met will stream a title from its Live in HD series each night through the duration of the closure. The performances, originally captured as live broadcasts in movie theatres worldwide, will begin at 7:30 PM from the company’s homepage. (The featured performances—and several others—are available via the Met Opera on Demand subscription service, though the videos in the nightly series will be made available for free for 20 hours following the initial stream).”

From PBS Kids on Twitter: “Is your child’s school closed due to COVID-19? PBS KIDS is launching a weekday newsletter to share activities and tips you can use to keep your child playing and learning at home.”

Information is Beautiful: COVID-19 #CoronaVirus Infographic Datapack. Regularly-updated information about COVID-19: rates of infection, media mentions, contagiousness, etc.

Phys .org: How do I include my pets in my family’s emergency planning for COVID-19?. “The American Veterinary Medical Association (AVMA) has created a helpful toolkit on how to include pets in preparedness planning for house fires, natural disasters, and other emergencies. I recommend reviewing the AVMA’s pet-evacuation kit checklist for a list of items to have on hand—and stocking up on two weeks’ worth of food, water, medicines, flea and tick prevention, kitty litter (if needed), and cleaning supplies for your pet.”


Neowin: Instagram is clamping down on coronavirus AR effects. “Instagram announced today new measures meant to help curb the spread of misinformation surrounding the coronavirus pandemic (COVID-19). One of these steps is cracking down on AR effects related to the virus.”

CNN: Twitter could have caused a coronavirus panic in New York. It’s not doing a lot about it. “Tweets falsely claiming that New York City was going into lockdown as a result of the coronavirus swirled around Twitter Thursday evening. A ‘citywide quarantine’ was about to come into place, one user falsely claimed.”


The Verge: Activists pick up their phones and move online as coronavirus curbs protests. “Mass protests are indefinitely on hold, some grassroots groups say, amid efforts to contain the spread of the novel coronavirus. Groups like the Sunrise Movement — which had also planned to join the Wall Street rally — are turning to online activism and phone banking to keep momentum going. Sunrise, which has pushed for a Green New Deal by occupying the offices of ranking Democrats like Nancy Pelosi, tells The Verge that it is postponing all of its mass mobilizations and in-person trainings until further notice.”

Vulture: It Could Be an Incredibly Quiet Year’: 13 Artists On Bracing for Post-Coronavirus Life. “If you think the coronavirus pandemic’s only affected massive festivals like SXSW and Coachella and big-scale tours like Billie Eilish’s and Cher’s, think again. As more metropolitan areas take necessary steps in an effort to contain the virus’s spread, thousands of smaller acts are having their entire year — and, in many cases, their only source of income — completely wiped out.”

The Chive: Portland distillery turns their alcohol waste into free hand sanitizer (9 Photos). “According to Jon Poteet, the owner, this move is a no-brainer. During the process of distilling their own spirits, the first batch of alcohol that comes out, isn’t drinkable. Until now, they’ve been using it as a cleaning agent to keep the place shiny and disinfected.”

The Next Web: Porn sites have turned coronavirus into a viral marketing scheme — and it’s working. “While the coronavirus pandemic is forcing governments across the world to put entire nations under lockdown, adult entertainment companies have found a way to spin this health crisis into yet another opportunity to make you watch more porn — and according to data, the strategy is working.”


NPR: COMIC: I Spent A Day In Coronavirus Awareness Mode. Epidemiologists, How Did I Do?. “So I spent one day last week trying to be aware of doing all the right things. I mean, how hard can it be to wash your hands a lot and avoid crowds? I followed guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization. Then I asked epidemiologists to grade me. Scroll to the end of the comic to find out how I did.”

The Guardian: Anti-inflammatories may aggravate Covid-19, France advises. “The country’s health minister, Olivier Véran, who is a qualified doctor and neurologist, tweeted on Saturday: ‘The taking of anti-inflammatories [ibuprofen, cortisone … ] could be a factor in aggravating the infection. In case of fever, take paracetamol. If you are already taking anti-inflammatory drugs, ask your doctor’s advice.'”


Reuters: Exclusive: Fewer poll workers, coronavirus, spark fears of election day woes in Ohio Democratic primary. “Nearly a quarter of Ohio’s counties are deploying fewer poll workers for the state’s Democratic primary on Tuesday than they have in previous presidential election years, raising concerns from voting-rights advocates who say the reductions could lengthen lines at the polls.”

Politico: Inside Jared Kushner’s coronavirus research: A wide net on a giant Facebook group. “Just before midnight Wednesday, a doctor asked a group of fellow emergency room physicians on Facebook how they would combat the escalating coronavirus outbreak. ‘I have direct channel to person now in charge at White House,’ Kurt Kloss wrote in his post. The next morning, after hundreds of doctors responded, Kloss explained why he sought the suggestions: Jared Kushner, President Donald Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser, had asked him for recommendations.”

Poynter: Hoaxes about coronavirus tests have political uses and can push patients away. “Who has the right to be tested for the 2019 coronavirus? Only those with symptoms, or also those who are in quarantine but feeling fine? How much does the test cost? Will uninsured people have to pay out of pocket? Or is the government covering testing costs? Over the past week, the volume of false answers to those questions on social media caught the attention of fact-checkers that are part of the #CoronaVirusFacts/#DatosCoronaVirus alliance.”

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