Speculative Annotation, Tiananmen Square Museum, Black Trans Femme Artists, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, August 4, 2021


Library of Congress: Speculative Annotation Invites Public to Interact with Digitized Collections at the Library of Congress. “Created by artist and 2021 Innovator in Residence Courtney McClellan, Speculative Annotation is an open-source dynamic web application and public art project. The app presents a unique mini collection of free-to-use items from the Library for students, teachers and learners to annotate through captions, drawings and other types of mark-making. As a special feature for Speculative Annotation users, the app includes a collection of informative, engaging annotations from Library experts and resources on the Library’s website.”

South China Morning Post: Virtual Tiananmen Square museum crowdfunded by Hong Kong vigil organiser launches. “The online museum offers a timeline of the 1989 student-led pro-democracy movement in Beijing, including the subsequent crackdown and its aftermath. It also provides a list of those killed, injured and forced to go into exile. The website dedicates a chapter to Hong Kong’s role in backing the student movement and later commemorating the crackdown over the past three decades.” The museum is currently in Chinese only, but more languages are expected.

Bob FM: Fashion Nova’s Huge Contribution To Support Black Trans Femme Artists. “Black Trans Femme Artists (BTFA) collective, a community-based organization, revolves around art production and preservation by Black trans nonbinary femmes and Black trans women. It provides them the support and resources they need to thrive. This organization received donations to the tune of $25,000 from Fashion Nova’s Women on Top.” According to this article, a database of Black Trans Femme artists around the world will soon be launched by this organization.


Engadget: Facebook disables accounts of NYU team looking into political ad targeting. “Before the US election last year, a team of researchers from New York University’s engineering school launched a project to gather more data on political ads. In particular, the team wanted to know how political advertisers choose the demographic their ads target and don’t target. Shortly after the project called the NYU Ad Observatory went live, however, Facebook notified the researchers that their efforts violate its terms of service related to bulk data collection. Now, the social network has announced that it has ‘disabled the accounts, apps, Pages and platform access associated with NYU’s Ad Observatory Project and its operators…'”

BBC: WhatsApp ‘view once’ brings disappearing photos and videos. “WhatsApp is rolling out a feature that allows users to have photos or videos vanish after they are seen. After the recipient opens the image for the first time, ‘view once’ deletes it, without saving it to a phone.”

CNET: How to use Apple’s Hide My Email feature to kick spammers out of your inbox. “Some spam is sent with malicious intent, but a lot of it boils down to harmless email clogging up your inbox, creating a cacophony of advertisements you don’t want to see, and plenty of time-consuming work to delete or unsubscribe. Apple is taking aim at email spam with a new tool called Hide My Email, which aims to thin out your inbox by keeping email spam from showing up in the first place.? Note that this is a premium service, not free.


New York Times: Iraq Reclaims 17,000 Looted Artifacts, Its Biggest-Ever Repatriation. “When the Iraqi prime minister’s plane touched down in Baghdad last week after an official visit to the United States, its cargo included 17,000 archaeological artifacts returned by a prominent museum and an Ivy League university in the largest-ever repatriation of looted Iraqi antiquities.”

ZDNet: He thought iPhone users were stupid. Then his Google Pixel stopped working. “It’s long been an issue with Google that many of its phones are excellent, but much of what surrounds them — the marketing and the customer service — are slightly less than excellent, drifting toward the really not very good. You’d think the company would fully commit, one way or the other. Yet it’s constantly seemed to resist, preferring to hang in slow, suspended animation.”


BNN Bloomberg: Google Accused in Suit of Fixing Ad Rates With a Facebook Deal. “Alphabet Inc.’s Google was accused in an antitrust lawsuit of giving itself the edge in online advertising by cutting a cozy deal with Facebook that gives the social network an advantage in virtual auctions which determine whose ads appear where.”

Wired: France Cracked Down on Google’s Ad Tech. What’s Next?. “In a single judgement, the regulator, known as the Autorité de la Concurrence in French, managed to reshape how Google’s advertising technology works. The ruling revolves around technologies within Google’s Ad Manager—a platform that helps companies buy and sell the ads that are shown on billions of web pages.”

The Register: Australian court rules an AI can be considered an inventor on patent filings. “In a case brought by Stephen Thaler, who has filed and lost similar cases in other jurisdictions, Australia’s Federal Court last month heard and decided that the nation’s Commissioner of Patents erred when deciding that an AI can’t be considered an inventor.”


Sydney Morning Herald: The Olympics have convinced me to ditch social media for good. “The penny dropped last Thursday afternoon as Jess Fox won gold in the women’s C1 canoe slalom. If you were watching on Seven, you were crying with her, equally happy and relieved because of the sadness of what happened two days earlier in the K1. If you were scrolling through Twitter, the sentiment was far different. Here, in the cesspool of anonymous public opinion, much of the talk was about her father, Richard, who had called the event off a TV in a small room in Melbourne.”

Irish Times: Era of self-regulation by social media giants must end. “There is much that is good about social media – it can keep us informed, connected with friends, share ideas and crowdfund. It is transforming how we interact, mostly in a positive way. However, listening to evidence presented before the committee, as well as having heard so many stories privately and in the media about online abuse, anonymous trolling and algorithmic bias, it is clear that the era of self-regulation by the tech companies has to end.” Good morning, Internet…

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