January 6, LinkedIn, Mozilla, More: Friday ResearchBuzz, January 7, 2022


Smithsonian Magazine: Archiving the January 6 Insurrection for History. “Religion, curators point out, played a role in the insurrection. The [National Museum of American History], which recently announced the formation of its Center for the Understanding of Religion in American History, is collaborating with the University of Alabama’s Department of Religious Studies. A new website, ‘Uncivil Religion: January 6, 2021,’ features essays from scholars and archived digital materials from the insurrection. The site will catalog tweets, videos and FBI files to document how religious beliefs played a role in the attack.”


TechCrunch: LinkedIn is launching interactive, Clubhouse-style audio events this month in beta; a video version will come this spring. “LinkedIn, now with more than 800 million people listing their professional profiles to build out their careers, is taking its next steps to get them to spend more time on the platform. The company is rolling out a new events platform, where it will be listing, hosting and marketing interactive, virtual live events.”

The Verge: Mozilla pauses accepting crypto donations following backlash. “Mozilla, the nonprofit organization that makes the Firefox web browser, announced Thursday that it would be pausing the ability to accept cryptocurrency donations following significant backlash spurred in part by a Mozilla founder, Jamie Zawinski (via Business Insider).”

FactCheck: Death of Betty White Leads to Swirl of Falsehoods on Social Media. “TV actress Betty White passed away at age 99 on Dec. 31. Following her passing, various falsehoods appeared on social media about White, including claims that she died after getting a COVID-19 booster shot and that she was the sister of former first lady Barbara Bush. White died of natural causes, according to her agent, and she had no siblings.”


PR Newswire: A digital future for Black poetry at JMU, thanks to new $2 million grant (PRESS RELEASE). “The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has awarded James Madison University $2 million over four and a half years to secure the digital future of the Furious Flower Poetry Center, the nation’s first academic center devoted to Black poetry. This generous grant will support the Center’s internationally recognized leadership and provide for archival description, digital preservation, and global access to an extensive archive of Furious Flower poetry and spoken word performance videos held by JMU Libraries Special Collections.”

Mashable: It’s time to rethink how you speak to young people about their bodies. “Elyse Myers has a message for the adults scrolling TikTok: Find better ways to address young people about their physical appearance. Or better yet, don’t talk about it at all. In a recent viral video, the 28-year-old creator shared her own struggles with negative body image after a passing comment made by an adult in seventh grade. It’s invited people, women in particular, to share stories about the staying power of an adult’s comments on a young person’s body, and is a lesson in how to appropriately teach kids about confidence and respect.”

ZDNet: Google Chrome rival Brave reports another big jump in users. “Brave, the Chromium-based and privacy-focused browser, now has 50 million monthly active users. That total means user numbers have more than doubled from the 24 million it had at the end of 2020.”


Techdirt: The VPN Is On Everybody’s Shitlist After Years Of Scammy Providers And Empty Promises . “As privacy scandals and hacks grew over the last decade, VPNs quickly emerged as a sort of mystical panacea, that could protect you from all harm on the internet. Of course, this resulted in a flood of VPN competitors who were outright scams, made misleading statements about what data is collected, or failed to protect consumer data. The end result is a new trend in the press where about once a month we get a new story informing you that you probably don’t actually need a VPN.” Gack, I can’t imagine connecting to public or even semi-public networks (hotel WiFi) without using a VPN.

Daily Sabah: 40 arrested in Twitch corruption probe in Turkey. “Demirören News Agency (DHA) reported that some suspects had collaborated with streamers who were aware that the bit payments were made using stolen credit cards and took their share. Bits cannot be converted to actual money but the scammers are accused of getting payment in actual money from streamers in exchange of huge troves of bits they sent. The scheme was allegedly used for money laundering by criminal groups.”

Sky News: Mafia fugitive arrested after being spotted on Google Street View in Spain. “A Sicilian mafia fugitive who was on the run for nearly 20 years was caught after being spotted on Google Street View. Gioacchino Gammino, 61, was tracked down to Galapagar in Spain – a town near Madrid – after a picture showed a man resembling him chatting outside a fruit shop.”


Business Insider: QAnon networks are evading Twitter’s crackdown on disinformation to pump out pro-Capitol-riot propaganda, study says. “Networks of QAnon accounts are using unusual tactics to evade Twitter’s ban on disinformation and flood the platform with conspiracy theories, a study shared with Insider found.”

North Carolina State University: This is How Students Can Learn Problem-Solving Skills in Social Studies. “A new study led by a researcher from North Carolina State University offers lessons on how social studies teachers could use computational thinking and computer-based resources to analyze primary source data, such as economic information, maps or historical documents. The findings suggest that these approaches advance not only computational thinking, but also student understanding of social studies concepts.”

World Economic Forum: 1,500 endangered languages could disappear by the end of the century. “There are 7,000 documented languages currently spoken across the world, but half of them could be endangered, according to a new study. It is predicted that 1,500 known languages may no longer be spoken by the end of this century. Researchers from The Australian National University (ANU) analyzed thousands of languages to identify factors that put endangered ones at risk. The findings highlight a link between higher levels of schooling and language loss, as regionally dominant languages taught in class often overshadow indigenous tongues.” Good morning, Internet…

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