Congressional Research Service RSS, Block Party, Twitter, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, May 31, 2023


Disruptive Library Technology Jester: Congressional Research Service Syndication Feed. “Use your favorite search engine to look for ‘Congressional Research Service RSS or Atom’; you’ll find a few attempts to gather selected reports or comprehensive archives that stopped functioning years ago. And that is a real shame because these reports are good, taxpayer-funded work that should be more widely known. So I created a syndication feed in Atom.”


Mashable: Popular anti-troll tool Block Party shuts down. “Last week, Twitter launched a new API subscription tier that was supposedly meant for ‘startups.’ Instead of drawing startups in, though, it’s already claiming victims. Block Party, a popular anti-harassment tool, has now gone on ‘indefinite hiatus.'”

Axios: Twitter only worth 33% of what Musk-led investors paid, Fidelity says . “In Fidelity’s latest Twitter markdown, the financial services giant estimated in a monthly report of portfolio valuations that the company is now worth about $15 billion, or 33% of the October purchase price, per a Bloomberg assessment Tuesday.”

Engadget: Bluesky now lets you choose your own algorithm. “Bluesky, the Jack Dorsey-backed decentralized Twitter alternative, has released one of its most significant updates to date: the ability for users to choose their own algorithms. The service, which is still in a closed beta, released its ‘custom feeds’ feature, which allows people to subscribe to a range of different algorithms and make their own for others to follow.”


New York Times: Inside Sudan’s War, ‘There’s Another War for Art’. “Dozens of Sudanese artists and curators have fled their studios and galleries in the capital, jeopardizing thousands of artworks and imperiling an art scene central to the 2019 revolution.”

Search Engine Journal: Executive Director Of WordPress On 20 Years Of Innovation. “On May 27, 2023, WordPress celebrates 20 years of extraordinary growth. It powers approximately 43% of all websites and is the leading content management system by far. How did WordPress achieve this milestone and will it be able to continue as arguably the most successful open source project ever?”


Ars Technica: Minnesota enacts right-to-repair law that covers more devices than any other state . “It doesn’t cover video game consoles, medical gear, farm or construction equipment, digital security tools, or cars. But in demanding that manuals, tools, and parts be made available for most electronics and appliances, Minnesota’s recently passed right-to-repair bill covers the most ground of any US state yet.”

Politico: Russia’s Wagner Group uses Twitter and Facebook to hunt new recruits. “Russia’s paramilitary Wagner Group has been using Twitter and Facebook to recruit medics, drone operators and even psychologists to aid fighting operations, including in Ukraine, according to exclusive research seen by POLITICO. Job ads for Wagner, which has mercenaries operating in several countries, have reached nearly 120,000 views on the two social media platforms over the last ten months, according to Logically, a U.K. disinformation-focused research group.”

Reuters: Dutch parliament chair calls on Twitter to prevent threatening messages on platform. “The chairwoman of the Dutch parliament on Wednesday called on Twitter to act to stop threats being broadcast on the social media platform against the country’s lawmakers.”


Sidney Morning Herald: Anti-Voice accounts on Twitter ‘abusive with impunity’ by using false identities. “The most active Twitter accounts opposing the Indigenous Voice to parliament are people using false identities who are stoking an increasingly divisive online campaign, rather than computerised ‘bots’, an analysis reveals.”

University of Portsmouth: New research uses AI to analyse propaganda tweets on Iranian nuclear deal. “Thousands of state-sponsored propaganda tweets on the Iranian nuclear deal have been analysed using artificial intelligence by experts at the University of Portsmouth.”

The Conversation: AI is helping us read ancient Mesopotamian literature. “The primary objective of the eBL project is to advance the understanding of Babylonian literature by reconstructing it to the fullest extent possible. Additionally, the project aims to provide a user-friendly platform containing extensive transliterations of cuneiform tablet fragments, along with a robust search tool, to address the abiding problem of the fragmented nature of Mesopotamian literature.” Good morning, Internet…

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