Global Community Torah, Peru Truth and Reconciliation Commission, Tech Politics, More: Wednesday ResearchBuzz, August 30, 2023


eJewish Philanthropy: Sefaria launches first-ever digital Torah writing project . “Called the ‘Global Community Torah,’ the project, launched in honor of Sefaria’s 10th anniversary, is the first digital Torah scroll that provides the opportunity for Jews of all ages and backgrounds to participate in its writing — all 304,805 letters.”

National Security Archive: Peru’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission: 20 Years Later. “On the 20th anniversary of the Peruvian truth commission’s final report, the National Security Archive posts a core collection of declassified U.S. documents chronicling 20 years of conflict across three presidential administrations along with records relating to the 2001 decision to establish a commission to investigate the violence.”


NBC News: Elon Musk and Mark Zuckerberg are among the tech execs who will attend the Senate’s first AI forum. “Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg and other leaders in the tech industry will gather at the Capitol next month for the first in a series of policy forums to discuss ways to regulate artificial intelligence, a spokesperson for Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Monday. In addition to Musk and Zuckerberg, other confirmed chief executives include Microsoft’s Satya Nadella, Alphabet’s Sundar Pichai, OpenAI’s Sam Altman and NVIDIA’s Jensen Huang, as well as former Google CEO Eric Schmidt.”


TechCrunch: gets unfriended: Daily transactions drop 95% as hyped decentralized social app loses steam. “Activity on the app, running as an invite-only public beta since August 10, declined 95% from a peak of almost 39,000 daily transactions on August 21 to about 1,400 at the time of writing, according to Dune Analytics data from user cryptokoryo. Just seven days ago, I wondered if’s early growth would be sustainable, and we can see that the answer is clearly no.” I know my indexing of the article last week probably looked a little weird, but this is why I did it – I wanted to note a date and see how long a platform based on cryptohype could last in current conditions. Answer seems to be “not long”.

Engadget: Libby is making it easier to access magazines for free with a supported library card. “A library card is one of the most useful things you can have in your wallet. Libby offers free access to ebooks and audiobooks if you have a supported library card (some 90 percent of public libraries in North America now use OverDrive’s app). Not only that, you can also use Libby to read a host of magazines for absolutely zilch. Some updates are coming to the app next month that should make it easier to read the likes of The New Yorker, Rolling Stone, Bon Appetit and Wired for free.”


St. Louis Post-Dispatch: Missouri health agency quietly scrubbed sexual health, LGBTQ resources from website. “As Missouri lawmakers were considering the most anti-LGBTQ bills of any state, the state health department quietly scrubbed youth sexual health and LGBTQ resources from its website. Lisa Cox, the spokesperson for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, emailed the agency’s website team in late January directing the removal of links from the website’s adolescent and teen health information page.”

Fast Casual: Chipotle recruiting 7K workers via social media. “With fall being the start of the Chipotle Mexican Grill’s second-busiest season combined with the opening of over 250 restaurant this year, Chipotle is using social media to recruit over 7,000 workers. Building on the success of its ‘Behind the Foil’ documentary style television spots, Chipotle is rolling out an installment of commercials featuring unfiltered and emotional testimonials from team members about the impact Chipotle has had on their lives as well as a glimpse into daily preparation using real ingredients and classic culinary techniques.”

Rolling Stone: Chinese Intel Officers Interfered in U.S. Election. “Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo’s visit to China is putting a spotlight on the future of TikTok in the United States, where criticism of the app and its ties to Beijing reached a fever pitch this year.Despite the intense pressure on the popular short-form video app, which is owned by the Chinese technology company ByteDance, efforts to ban or regulate it in Washington have not yet borne fruit.”


CNBC: X, formerly Twitter, faces 2,200 arbitration cases and filing fees over $3 million. “X, the social network formerly known as Twitter, is facing 2,200 arbitration cases that ex-employees filed after Elon Musk took over the company, slashed headcount, and made other sweeping changes there. The filing fees alone for that volume of cases could amount to $3.5 million.”

Bloomberg: Google Play Judge Cancels Class-Action Status Won by Consumers. “Google will likely be off the hook for paying damages to 21 million users who claim in an antitrust lawsuit they were overcharged in the company’s app marketplace as a federal judge retracted a ruling that gave them class-action status.”

WIRED: The Weird, Big-Money World of Cybercrime Writing Contests . “CYBERCRIMINALS CAN BE inventive—especially if there’s money on the table. One hacker has penned a 50-page essay on how to invest in cryptocurrency and sell at the right time to make a profit. Another put together a guide for how to create a fake version of that could be used to steal people’s usernames and passwords. And another produced instructions—cryptically titled “Elegantly breed daddies on lavender”—explaining how to scam money from people who pay to watch webcam models perform. The unusual collection of documents and tutorials were all produced by cybercriminals and hackers trying to win money for their ideas, technical skills, and writing ability.”


Sydney Morning Herald: Why haven’t we regulated social media yet?. “Seven years after the Donald Trump campaign exploited social media to upend liberal democracy and unleash a new paradigm of networked populist politics, the technology remains untouched by meaningful regulation. Even as China, Russia and Iran use Western platforms to disseminate propaganda, and democracies face waves of domestic misinformation, a strategic approach toward the technology by society and government is absent.” Good morning, Internet…

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