WhaleVis, New Mexico Land Usage, Twitter, More: Saturday Afternoon ResearchBuzz, November 18, 2023


University of Washington: WhaleVis turns more than a century of whaling data into an interactive map. “A dataset maintained by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) contains detailed information on commercial whale catches — more than 2.1 million records, predominantly from 1880 until the IWC banned whaling in 1986. Yet for researchers, distilling that data can prove its own challenge. A team at the University of Washington has created an online interactive map called WhaleVis, which lets whale researchers visualize the IWC’s data on global whale catches and whaling routes.”

KRQE: New Mexico farmers can now find land on new website. “What is a farmer without access to land? A new website launched by the New Mexico State University’s Cooperative Extension Service aims to make sure those looking for land can connect with local landowners. The site is called New Mexico LandLink. Sort of like a social media site, New Mexico LandLink lets people find each other and connect with the goal of putting good land to use.”


Politico: X can’t shirk FTC privacy settlement, or block Elon Musk’s deposition. “In an 11-page order issued less than an hour after a hearing in San Francisco federal court on Thursday, U.S. Magistrate Judge Thomas Hixson ruled he has no authority over the FTC’s administrative proceedings and declined to throw out or pause the settlement. He also said he has no authority to bar the agency from deposing the company’s owner and former CEO, Elon Musk.”


Politico: European Commission tells staff to ditch ads on X. “The European Commission’s communications department has asked all EU executive services to stop running adverts on X, the social media platform, over ‘widespread concerns relating to the spread of disinformation,’ according to an internal note obtained by Playbook.”

BBC: AI chief quits over ‘exploitative’ copyright row. “A senior executive at the tech firm Stability AI has resigned over the company’s view that it is acceptable to use copyrighted work without permission to train its products. Ed Newton-Rex was head of audio at the firm, which is based in the UK and US.”


The Hill: Campaigns are using AI. Tech companies are figuring out how to disclose what’s real.. “Meta and YouTube are crafting disclosure policies for use of generative artificial intelligence (AI) in political ads as the debate over how the government should regulate the technology stretches toward the 2024 election.”

Reuters: US SEC presses judge to force Elon Musk to testify in Twitter probe. “The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on Thursday urged a federal judge to force billionaire Elon Musk to testify for its investigation into his $44 billion takeover of social media giant Twitter, now known as X. In a document filed in federal court in San Francisco on Thursday, the SEC defended its efforts to compel Musk’s testimony, saying agency officials are acting within their authority.”

Associated Press: FTC warns food industry trade groups and influencers about disclosures on paid social media posts. “The Federal Trade Commission on Wednesday said it issued warnings to two food and beverage industry groups, as well as a dozen online influencers, for failing to adequately disclose paid social media posts that promoted a sweetener and sugary products.”


John Scalzi: Yup, Done With the Former Twitter. “Elon Musk, the most unfathomably insecure and pathetic billionaire the world has ever seen, has gone mask-off antisemite, and that means that while I had already reduced my participation on the former Twitter, now I’m off it entirely. I’m keeping the account so that no one can swoop in and take a screenname that’s been associated with me for the last fifteen years, but no more posting, and no more participation. Until and unless the service is sold to someone who isn’t Musk (and possibly even then, depending), I’m out, I’m through, I’m done.”

PetaPixel: Selfie-Related Deaths are ‘Public Health Risk’ in Age of Social Media. “In a paper published in September, researchers found that selfie-related injury and deaths have become a public health concern amid the near ubiquitous use of smartphones and social media apps. The paper scraped news reports of selfie-related deaths as well as a cross-sectional study by the iO Foundation that found 379 people were killed while taking selfies around the world between January 2008 and July 2021.” Good afternoon, Internet….

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