Latinx Movie Directors, Nevada Maps, YouTube, More: Monday ResearchBuzz, July 20, 2020


Deadline: Alberto Belli, Aurora Guerrero, Joel Novoa And Diego Velasco Launch First-Ever Latinx Directors Database. “The site focuses on creating a simple user experience for both sides of the pipeline. Studio executives, producers, showrunners and agents will be able to find directors of all genres with specific heritage, specialties, and levels of experience. In addition, users can easily watch reels and access current representation. It’s essentially a valuable resource to seek out creators of Latinx descent.”

Nevada Today: New Library Digital Collection: State Land Office Maps. “The University Libraries has recently added close to 3,000 plat maps from the State Land Office to the digital archive. These maps date from 1870 to 1988, with the bulk having been created before 1930. They feature the work of surveyors tasked with documenting land divisions in the state.”


Tubefilter: YouTube Adds Mental Health Information Panels To Videos About Depression, Anxiety. “Since the beginning of the pandemic, YouTube has significantly increased its use of health information panels, which pop up in search results and under videos to provide factual information and updates about specific topics. Now, the platform has expanded these panels to address two common mental illnesses: depression and anxiety. Beginning today, users who search for either illness will see a popup with information and an online screening tool.”


MakeUseOf: 6 Kid-Friendly Websites for Free Arts and Crafts Activities for Children. “This article focuses more on non-screen activities, although some of the websites include those. But there’s always a happy go-between. these free interactive art games for kids will develop color and art skills, and are child-appropriate. It’s no substitute for paints and palettes, but it is a launching point for digital design.”


CNN: Here are all the battlefronts TikTok is currently fighting on. “US officials say they’re considering banning the app over security concerns related to TikTok and its parent company, Beijing-based internet company ByteDance, following a similar decision by India. In the meantime, at least one US corporation is already taking action to restrict use of the app on company phones. The situation has TikTok scrambling to try to prove its reliability.”

Digiday: Slack is fueling media’s bottom-up revolution. “When media executives have to put out fires, they meet staffers where they live — on Slack, the enterprise software service where employees communicate, plan, gossip, talk shit about bosses and each other — and increasingly, organize themselves to fight for their rights. The irony of Slack is that media business leaders gravitated to it years ago as a tool to make the labor force more efficient and available at all hours. And now, those same workers are using Slack to fight back against their capitalist bosses.”

Search Engine Journal: Google Search Allegedly Boosts YouTube Results Ahead of Competitors . “Google prefers ranking content from YouTube over other video sources, according to a new report in the Wall Street Journal. When Facebook and other competitors host a video that also appears on YouTube, Google will allegedly push the YouTube result ahead of others in search results.”


Chicago Reporter: Chicago Police Department partially restores access to arrests data following outcry. “The Chicago Police Department has partially restored access to critical arrests data that was removed after the Reporter used it to refute official claims about arrests made in the early days of unrest due to the Minneapolis police killing of George Floyd. The data was made available two days after the Reporter published a story about how access to the API, a tool used by journalists and researchers to do timely analyses, had been shut down.”

New York Times: Border Agency Fires 4, Suspends 38 for Social Media Posts. “The Border Patrol’s parent agency said Friday that it fired four employees and suspended 38 without pay for inappropriate social media activity following revelations of a secret Facebook group that mocked members of Congress and migrants.”


Jerusalem Post: US members of Congress use social media more than ever before – study. “US members of Congress, both Democrats and Republicans, are more involved on social media platforms than ever before, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis published on Thursday. The analysis is based on a database of every tweet and Facebook post from members of Congress since 2015. It concludes that the congressional social media landscape has undergone vast changes in recent years.”

ZDNet: GitHub just buried a giant open-source archive in an Arctic vault for 1,000 years. “Microsoft-owned GitHub has finally moved its snapshot of all active public repositories on the site to a vault in Norway. GiHub announced the archiving plan last November and on February 20 followed through with the 21 terabyte snapshot written to 186 reels of film.”

Techdirt: Fan Uses AI Software To Lipread What Actors Really Said In TV Series Before Chinese Authorities Censored Them. “The AI technology involved using Google’s Facemesh package, which can track key ‘landmarks’ on faces in images and videos. By analyzing the lip movements, it is possible to predict the sounds of a Chinese syllable. However, there is a particular problem that makes it hard to lipread Chinese using AI. There are many homophones in Chinese (similar sounds, different meanings). In order to get around this problem, [Eury] Chen explored the possible sequences of Chinese characters to find the ones that best match the plot at that point. As his blog post (and the ChinAI translation) explains, this allowed him to work out why certain lines were blocked by the Chinese authorities — turns out it was for totally petty reasons.” Good morning, Internet…

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