TONS of free/useful resource pointers today. 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.
Big Island Now: State Unveils New COVID-19 Website. “The Hawai‘i Department of Health said it provides timely information and resources on the coronavirus, including guidance on how to prevent and mitigate community spread, common symptoms of COVID-19 and frequently asked questions.”
WXYZ: Website aims to help bartenders and servers affected by COVID-19 shutdowns. “The website, GoTipem.com, allows bartenders and servers to enter their own digital money transaction names and people can send them a “tip” of $1, $2 or $5, as you would if you were in a restaurant.”
Milwaukee: UWM Archive is Chronicling Milwaukee’s Coronavirus Experience for History. “The site’s goal is to memorialize how Milwaukee experienced this global pandemic. Cantwell and one of his classes have taken on the task of curating submissions and material for the collection. They are enlisting the help of every Milwaukeean who wants to contribute something to the archive, be it photographs of shuttered businesses, notifications from employers, personal stories, examples of social distancing in the community, and anything else that records the strange times around us.”
WMTV: New website initiative connects Wisconsin volunteers and organizations amid COVID-19. “A new website in the state is helping to connect volunteers and organizations in Wisconsin to address pressing needs during the coronavirus outbreak. The United Way of Wisconsin, Serve Wisconsin, and the Wisconsin Volunteer Coordinators Association created the COVID-19 Response initiative on the Volunteer Wisconsin website.”
IGN India: Netflix Party Launches As A Google Chrome Extension. “You can still have a party despite social distancing, and Netflix has the perfect way for you to jam. The streaming giant launched a chrome extension that allows you and your compadres to watch Netflix shows and movies together right from the comfort of your own homes.”
Variety: Grammy Museum to Bring Artist Programs Online, Starting With Billie Eilish, Brandi Carlile, Yola. “Included in the initial rollout from the archives: nine programs featuring Eilish with her brother Finneas, Carlile, Yola, Bob Newhart, Greta Van Fleet, Kool and the Gang, X Ambassadors, Larkin Poe and Scarypoolparty, many of them recorded in the last few months. All were filmed at the 200-seat Clive Davis Theater inside the museum, located in the LA Live complex.”
Slate: Am I Expected to Home-School My Kid Right Now?. “As COVID-19 continues to spread, schools nationwide are shutting their doors for extended periods in an attempt to limit virus transmission. I’ve spent the last week or so fielding questions from parents about what this means for their children’s education, what parents should be doing to help their kids, and how best to handle all of this uncertainty. Here’s a list of some of parents’ most pressing questions, along with my answers, which I hope may help you navigate this difficult time.”
Vogue: 8 Soothing Social Media Accounts to Help Keep You Sane. “Staying informed about the latest developments of the global coronavirus pandemic, or the impending presidential election is undoubtedly important right now. But so are moments of self-care, even when ‘unplugging’ isn’t exactly feasible. Below, Vogue staffers weigh in on the social media accounts that offer welcome moments of respite on their Instagram feeds and a much-needed Twitter timeline cleanse.”
6SqFt: All of the performances, exhibits, and events from NYC cultural institutions you can stream online. “Although the coronavirus has shuttered most of the city, many museums, performance centers, libraries, and other organizations are offering free (or nearly free) online resources to entertain New Yorkers throughout this difficult period. From virtual storytime with Brooklyn Public Library librarians to live-streamed performances by the Metropolitan Opera, support local organizations safely from your home.” A bunch of listings here.
Hypebae: ‘Vogue Italia’ Grants 3 Months Of Free Access To Its Online Archives. “Through June 13, Vogue Italia has opened its digital archive of every issue from 1964 to the present. Every page is scanned in high-resolution color, and the archive’s advanced indexing system allows users to search images by designer, photographer, brand and more.”
Expats CZ: The Czech National Library has made its 206,000-title archive available online for free. “Temporary online access to the collections of the National Library and public higher-education institutions has been granted to the public on Tuesday, March 17. General Director of the National Library, Martin Kocanda and Jiří Srstka, the Director of the Collective Copyright Association (DILIA), reached the decision on Monday morning. More than 206,000 titles of monographs and periodicals will be made available online, representing over 59 million pages.”
RadioTimes: BBC to bring classic TV and radio back to iPlayer “in unprecedented times”. “The BBC has announced it will make classic TV box-sets and radio programmes available on iPlayer as part of a wide-ranging set of measures to help the nation through “challenging times” as the coronavirus pandemic continues.”
NBC Sports: How you can watch every Eagles game of last decade for free. “Through May 31, NFL Game Pass will be free for all fans. If you’re not familiar with NFL Game Pass, it’s basically the NFL’s online library of every NFL game. It includes all games from 2009-19 and multiple versions. Those versions include the full broadcast, condensed games and even All-22 access if you want to break down some film.”
Digiday: Publishers are unlocking fitness classes for people stuck at home. “Unlocking paid online fitness classes may seem like a strange move when the only option for most people is to work out at home. But some fitness and wellness publishers have done exactly that.”
The National: The show goes online: where to stream live concerts and operas. “A growing number of artists, ensembles and orchestras are migrating online for free performances – ranging from intimate bedroom jams to full orchestral concerts in empty theatres – to provide healing through music during challenging times. Leading the charge in the region is The Fridge. Known for its concert season, held in Al Quoz, the events company is taking their shows on the virtual road and have announced that its 22nd season will all be streamed online.” A lot of Middle Eastern and European artists I had not seen elsewhere.
Attitude: Cancelled BFI Flare Goes Online With 230 Films, And We Are Pumped. “Some cinema lovers are already stuck at home over the coming weeks due to the Corona Virus pandemic, which forced the BFI Flare London LGBTIQ+ Film Festival due to start yesterday [18 March] to cancel. But in great news for queer film fans everywhere, the festival will now become BFI Flare at Home.”
Lowyat: Scribd Makes Entire Digital Library Of eBooks And AudioBooks Free For A Month. “Scribd, the US-based ebook and audiobook subscription service, announced that it is making its entire digital library free for everyone to access for the next 30 days. As you can guess, one of the main reasons the company is making its content accessible is to provide individuals who are self-quarantining or working from due to the ongoing Coronavirus (COVID-19) health issue.”
Vice: Google Is Putting Amazon Prime Ads on Russia-Backed Sites Spreading Coronavirus Conspiracies. “New research by the Global Disinformation Network has revealed that 1,400 fake news websites spreading coronavirus conspiracy theories across Europe have been funded to the tune of $76 million by ad tech companies — with more than 60% of the revenue coming from Google alone. Many of those websites are linked to the Kremlin or directly funded by the Russian government.”
Neowin: Google pauses Chrome releases to keep it stable. “Typically, a new update for Chrome and Chrome OS arrives every six weeks, but Google is temporarily halting new releases. The reason is to keep things ‘stable, secure, and reliable’ for all of the folks that are working from home due to the COVID-19 coronavirus.”
Techdirt: Social Media Promised To Block Covid-19 Misinformation; But They’re Also Blocking Legit Info Too. “Sing it with me, folks: content moderation is impossible to do well at scale. Over the last few weeks, all of the big social media platforms have talked about their intense efforts to block misinformation about Covid-19. It appeared to be something of an all hands on deck situation for employees (mostly working from home) at these companies. Indeed, earlier this week, Facebook, Google, Linkedin, Microsoft, Reddit, Twitter, and YouTube all released a joint statement about how they’re working together to fight Covid-19 misinformation, and hoping other platforms would join in. However, battling misinformation is not always so easy — as Facebook discovered yesterday.”
Bing Blogs: Stay informed on the coronavirus pandemic with Bing and Microsoft News. “Simply search for ‘covid19’, ‘coronavirus information’, or a related term, and you’ll find a tally of the cases in your geographic region as well as an up-to-date summary of global cases. This information is aggregated across multiple sources such as the Center for Disease Control, the World Health Organization, and other authoritative sources. As the situation is changing rapidly, we’re refreshing the data multiple times per day, and show a timestamp for when we published the latest available data.”
Las Vegas Review-Journal: Las Vegas strip club to offer drive-thru peep shows. “Little Darlings strip club will begin offering drive-through strip shows for those who want to indulge in some adult entertainment, but do not want to enter the building, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending people keep 6 feet in distance between themselves and others.”
Digital Trends: Spanish police are using drones to scold citizens who go outside. “While the majority of people are taking social distancing and shelter-in-place orders seriously, some aren’t, and police in Spain have adopted a new tool to help convince those people to stay indoors: Drones.”
KMIZ: With Cincinnati Zoo closed, Fiona the hippo goes online. “Fiona, the three-year-old hippo who became a worldwide celebrity when she was born at a record-breaking low weight of 29 pounds and managed to survive against the odds, will kick off a series of “Home Safari” livestreams from the Ohio zoo.”
The New York Times: Without Places to Gather, Debut Novelists Reimagine Book Promotion. “For many first-time novelists, years of hard work (and often solitary time) culminate in seeing their book come into the world: going to festivals and bookstores to read sections aloud and connecting with readers face to face, inhabiting with others the worlds they built. But with social distancing guidelines discouraging gatherings of more than 10 people, publishing a debut has changed in ways that authors couldn’t have foreseen just a few weeks ago. We spoke to several debut novelists about their books, their plans to promote their work and their days during this unusual time.”
LADBible: Musicians Are Playing Mini Concerts On Social Media For People. “The coronavirus has caused some of the biggest music festivals around the world to cancel or postpone. Artists have suspended their world or national tours, leaving many fans reeling that they won’t be able to see their favourite act up close and personal. But some of these mega celebrities have decided to give people a show on social media instead.”
Vogue: “Stay Safe and Strong, Love You”: How 15 Designers Are Spreading Digital Messages of Hope During the Coronavirus Crisis. “In the fashion community, many designers and founders of independent labels are feeling the angst of social distancing too. Like all of us, they feel sad, frightened, and stuck, but still motivated to make change. Many have taken to Instagram to speak out about the effects of the virus and the uphill battle that we all still have in the fight against it. Their storefronts are closing and their businesses are more than likely declining, but many, including Cate Holstein, Kerby Jean-Raymond, Simon Porte Jacquemus, and Brandon Maxwell are staying positive via social media.”
BBC: US jails begin releasing prisoners to stem Covid-19 infections. “US jails are to let out inmates as cases of coronavirus infections are being reported in prisons. New York City is releasing ‘vulnerable’ prisoners, the mayor said on Wednesday, days after Los Angeles and Cleveland freed hundreds of inmates.”
BBC: Coronavirus protest in Brazil sees millions bang pots from balconies. “People in Brazil have expressed anger at President Jair Bolsonaro’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic by banging pots and pans together on balconies. Millions of protesters in the cities of São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro appeared at windows on Wednesday evening calling for the president to step down.”
Slate: Coronavirus Diaries: I’m a Biologist in Milan Working Nonstop to Understand COVID-19. “On Feb. 21, COVID-19 broke into our laboratory and turned everything upside down. It was supposed to be a day like any other, but nothing goes as planned anymore. That afternoon, we should have gone to the graduation of a student who did his thesis with us, but in the end only one colleague of mine went. The rest of us immediately put our heads down and started working on the virus.”
Geeks are Sexy: Thank God For the Motherf*cking Nerds Right Now – A Rap Homage to Coronavirus Fighters. “In these surreal, frightening times, I’ve been realizing more than ever how helplessly reliant and dependent I am, as a non-smart person, on all the incredibly intelligent, hard-working professionals who’ve dedicated their lives to becoming experts in their respective fields. To the doctors, healthcare workers, epidemiologists, immunologists, microbiologists, and all the other ‘ists,’ we would be F&#ked without you.” As you might imagine, lots of swearing.
Insider: This online calculator tells you exactly how much toilet roll you actually need to buy. “London web developer Dave Stewart created online and mobile app Got Paper? in 24 hours over the past weekend in an attempt to solve a human problem while adding a bit of British humor into the mix.”
POLITICS AND SECURITY
ZDNet: Thousands of COVID-19 scam and malware sites are being created on a daily basis. “In the midst of a global coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, hackers are not letting a disaster go to waste and have now automated their coronavirus-related scams to industrial levels. According to multiple reports, cybercriminals are now creating and putting out thousands of coronavirus-related websites on a daily basis.”
The Siasat Daily: 2 US Senators slam Google for face mask ads. “Two Democratic senators have slammed Google for allowing face mask-selling ads on its platform, asking the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to pursue enforcement action against the tech giant.”
BetaNews: Hackers using COVID-19 specials to drum up business on the dark web. “We all know that hackers and cybercriminals are keen to cash in on any opportunity to spread their wares. Researchers at Check Point have uncovered that hackers are using COVID-19 to offer specials and discounts on the dark net.”
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