Ukraine Archives Rescue Team, Wartime Fact-Checking, Mykhailo Fedorov, More: Ukraine Update, March 15, 2022


CBC: University of Alberta initiative aims to protect Ukrainian archives, research. “The Canadian Institute of Ukrainian Studies (CIUS) recently helped launch an initiative offering free, secure cloud storage to archivists, librarians, scientists and other institutions in Ukraine. Director Natalia Khanenko-Friesen said the Ukraine Archives Rescue Team came as a result of brainstorming on how to assist colleagues in areas afflicted by the devastation of the Russian invasion.”

TimeOut: This handy website helps you fact-check news about the Russia-Ukraine war. “Luckily, a new website is trying to cut through the sludge of mistruths. It’s … a collaborative project from the International Fact-Checking Network Signatories. The initiative brings together the work of 120 fact-checking organisations in dozens of countries around the world, all of which cover stories and images not just circulating through Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and TikTok but also on news sites.”

NoCamels: Windward Offers Predictive Data To Minimize Maritime Risk From Sanctions In Russia. “Windward, the Israeli company providing predictive intelligence and data insights for the maritime ecosystem announced the launch of a solution on Monday designed to aid Windward customers in minimizing risk exposure in maritime trade related to ongoing sanctions against Russia.”


Search Engine Land: Bing’s ‘Russian invasion of Ukraine’ results show Opinions section and timelines. “Microsoft Bing’s search results for queries related to the conflict in Ukraine show an Opinions section and two timelines (one in the main column and another in the knowledge panel).”


TIME: ‘It’s Our Home Turf.’ The Man On Ukraine’s Digital Frontline. “Less than 48 hours after appealing to Elon Musk on Twitter, Ukraine’s Minister of Digital Transformation, Mykhailo Fedorov, posted a photo of a truckload of satellite dishes. The SpaceX founder had come through with help for Ukrainians trying to connect to the Internet amid Russia’s invasion, Fedorov said in the Feb. 28 tweet: ‘Starlink—here. Thanks, @elonmusk.’ Many marveled at the seemingly miraculous speed with which the 31-year old former IT entrepreneur, who is now serving as Ukraine’s youngest cabinet minister, had been able to enlist the help of the world’s richest man. But Fedorov wasn’t surprised.”

New Yorker: Vlogging the War. “With the help of a database launched by Ukraine’s Ministry of Internal Affairs, a YouTuber from Kyiv is calling strangers in Russia and telling them just what their boys in uniform are doing across the border.”

CNET: How the Ukrainian War Forced Some to Survive on Crypto. “[Artyom] Fedosov is one of approximately 5.5 million Ukrainians who own cryptocurrency. His ability to live off bitcoin and ether is music to the ears of cryptocurrency proponents. They point out that situations like Fedosov’s, when the financial system stutters or fails, are the precise reason bitcoin was created. Using a cryptocurrency wallet — as opposed to going through an intermediary exchange like Binance — holders can access their cryptocurrency with nothing more than an internet connection and a 12-word seed phrase.”

Washington Post: When war comes to work: Tensions rise for Ukrainian workers at freelance marketplace. “A real-time information war is playing out among Ukrainian and Russian freelancers on internal communication channels operated by Toptal. The heated debates about Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and misinformation is forcing Toptal to moderate sensitive geopolitical conversations. It’s also receiving backlash from pro-Ukraine freelancers, who want the company to take a stronger stance on the war. It’s a microcosm of the war playing out in the workplace and highlights the difficulties global companies must navigate when dealing with employees in a war zone.”

Washington Post: Boston doctors wanted to help Ukrainians. They made YouTube tutorials on how to control bleeding wounds.. “As heavy metal music plays in the background, a doctor grabs a piece of cloth and places it atop an open wound on a medical dummy. Pressing on the cloth with both hands, he applies pressure. Later, he secures a tourniquet to the dummy’s leg. The video is less than 40 seconds long — but its creators say it could help save lives in Ukraine.”


The Guardian: ‘It’s the right thing to do’: the 300,000 volunteer hackers coming together to fight Russia. “Kali – and many others who contributed to this article – declined to share his real name because some of the action he is taking is illegal and because he fears Russian retaliation. He is one of about 300,000 people who have signed up to a group on the chat app Telegram called ‘IT Army of Ukraine’, through which participants are assigned tasks designed to take the fight to Vladimir Putin. In so doing, they are trying to level the playing field between one of the world’s superpowers and Ukraine as it faces bombardment and invasion.”

The Register: Ukraine using Clearview AI facial recognition technology. “The Ukrainian government is using facial recognition technology from startup Clearview AI to help them identify the dead, reveal Russian assailants, and combat misinformation from the Russian government and its allies. Reuters reported yesterday that the country’s Ministry of Defense began using Clearview’s search engine for faces over the weekend.”


The Conversation: Russian government accounts are using a Twitter loophole to spread disinformation. “We tracked the Twitter activity of 75 official Russian government accounts and found they are a major source and amplifier of disinformation. At time of writing these accounts together have a total of 7,366,622 followers. They have been retweeted 35.9 million times, received 29.8 million likes, and 4 million replies. Between 25 February and 3 March 2022, about these accounts made 1,157 tweets – and around three quarters were about Ukraine. The accounts have tried to spread false narratives to justify the invasion.”

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