Affordable Connectivity Program, Public Domain 2022, Digital Privacy, More: Saturday ResearchBuzz, January 1, 2022

Wishing you peace, health, joy, and contentment in 2022. Much love.


The Verge: A program for cheaper internet for low-income Americans launches today. “Households can apply to take up to $30 a month off their internet service bill. For households on qualifying Tribal lands, the discount is up to $75 per month. The program could help to connect millions of people to the internet who haven’t had access to it at home, especially in communities that have historically faced more barriers to getting online.”


The Verge: Winnie-the-Pooh and around 400,000 early sound recordings enter public domain. “A. A. Milne’s Winnie-the-Pooh, Ernest Hemingway’s The Sun Also Rises, and other books, movies, and compositions from 1926 enter into the public domain today in the US. The works are now ‘free for all to copy, share, and build upon,’ according to Duke’s Center for the Study of the Public Domain, which tracks which copyrighted materials will become public each year.”

CNET: Remove all your personal info from the internet: 6 steps to disappear for good. “Unfortunately, you can never completely remove yourself from the internet, but there are ways to minimize your digital footprint, which would lower the chances of your personal data being out there. Be forewarned, however: Removing your information from the internet, as I’ve outlined below, could adversely affect your ability to communicate with potential employers. Still interested? Here are some ways to disappear your digital self.”


Wired: How to Rescue Your Photos From an Old Computer. “I recently told my cousin about a candid photo of our parents awkwardly caught mid-action, standing in front of my Christmas tree, unaware their photo was being taken. Once I described it, my cousin wanted to see it, and so did I— I realized it had been years since I’d laid eyes on it. I had assumed it was in one of the dozen photo albums in my living room, but I soon realized this photo, along with hundreds of others from my daughter’s childhood, was on one of my two retired laptops. I’m willing to bet you have memories like this too, photos stashed away on old hard drives, or a laptop you haven’t used in years that’s collecting dust in the back of your closet.”


Engadget: The tech industry’s accessibility report card for 2021 . “There are too many individual transgressions and improvements to exhaustively detail here. Due to their sheer size, though, tech’s largest companies wield the greatest influence over what the rest of the industry does. By holding them accountable, we have a better chance of seeing widespread change in the way tech thinks about inclusive design. Here’s how Apple, Google, Microsoft, Amazon, Meta (formerly Facebook) and more did to improve the accessibility of their products and services in 2021.”

Mashable: 33 years to read ‘Twilight’? This TikTok account isn’t in a hurry.. “One-line-at-a-time accounts like [Shaiann] Alger’s use a pretty simple format. Pick a book, movie, or TV show, make an account on your favorite social media platform (usually Twitter or, now, TikTok), and start tweeting a single line, sentence, or quote at a similar time each day. Some accounts go chronologically through a screenplay or book, but others mix it up. Schedule the tweets to go up each day and boom! Instant community.”

Denver Gazette: Social media groups coordinate to save animals endangered by Marshall fire. “As the Marshall fire grew, the Facebook posts flew. ‘For the small/growing fire on Middle Fork Road, please let me know if you need to coordinate horse evacuation. Currently it is 40 acres or so,’ someone posted on social media just before 11:30 a.m. Thursday. A short time later, the ‘Horse Evacuation Boulder Fort Collins Fire’ Facebook page became a life raft for farmers, ranchers and helpers.”


Techdirt: Missouri Governor Still Expects Journalists To Be Prosecuted For Showing How His Admin Leaked Teacher Social Security Numbers. “Missouri Governor Mike Parson is nothing if not consistent in his desire to stifle free speech. As you’ll recall, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch discovered that the state’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) website was programming in such an incompetent fashion that it would reveal, to anyone who knew where to look, the social security numbers of every teacher and administrator in the system (including those no longer employed there).”

KnowTechie: LastPass says your passwords are totally safe and no one’s account was compromised. “LastPass really wants you to know that the company didn’t leak any of your passwords. Earlier this week, users reported that the company notified them that their master passwords might have been compromised. But now, the company says an ‘error’ may have caused the alerts to be sent out.”

NJ: Number of women nominated to N.J. state boards climbs as lawmakers vote to create first-of-its-kind database. “The number of women nominated to serve on state boards, commissions and authorities inched higher this year as Gov. Phil Murphy’s administration and lawmakers responded to criticism that New Jersey’s vast array of boards is too white and male…. The increases come as the state Legislature approved a bill last week that will require Rutgers University to create and maintain a first-of-its-kind database listing every person appointed to a state board, commission or authority and survey them to track their race and gender.”


PsyPost: An analysis of Twitter posts suggests that people with depression show increased rumination on social media overnight. “People with depression show distinct patterns of online activity, according to a study published in Scientific Reports. Twitter users who said they had a diagnosis of depression were more active on Twitter in the evening, less active in the early morning, and ruminated more on Twitter from midnight to around 6 a.m.”

Washington Post: In 2021, tech talked up ‘the metaverse.’ One problem: It doesn’t exist.. “The metaverse doesn’t exist yet, and it probably won’t anytime soon. What does exist is an idea, an explosion of hype, and a bevy of rival apps and platforms looking to capitalize on both — without a clear path between the idea and reality. In techland, 2021 wasn’t the year of the metaverse. It was the year of rebranding existing technologies as building blocks for the metaverse, while leaving intact the corporate walls that make a true metaverse impossible.” Good afternoon, Internet…

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2 replies »

  1. Happy 2022 to the entire staff (laughing) at ResearchBuzz — with thanks (not laughing at ALL) for the work you have poured into this site over so many years!

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