Mother Jones: Barack Obama’s Library, the First Digital-Driven Presidential Archives in History, Breaks Ground Today

Mother Jones: Barack Obama’s Library, the First Digital-Driven Presidential Archives in History, Breaks Ground Today. “The center, as the New York Times reports, ‘won’t actually be a presidential library. In a break with precedent, there will be no research library on site, and none of Mr. Obama’s official presidential records. Instead, the Obama Foundation will pay to digitize the roughly 30 million pages of unclassified paper records from the administration so they can be made available online.’ Alongside the center will sit a museum, a sports space, a test kitchen, an art plaza, a kids’ area, and a new branch of the Chicago Public Library.”

NBC News: Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen launch podcast on Spotify

NBC News: Barack Obama and Bruce Springsteen launch podcast on Spotify. “Spotify on Monday announced the launch of ‘Renegades: Born in the USA,’ featuring the former president and the legendary rock star in conversation on issues ranging from politics and the state of America to fatherhood, marriage and manhood. The conversations will span eight episodes, the first two of which go live on Monday.”

New York Times: ‘Birtherism’ Lies About Kamala Harris Exceed Those About Obama

New York Times: a href=”https://www.nytimes.com/2020/09/22/technology/birtherism-lies-kamala-harris.html”>‘Birtherism’ Lies About Kamala Harris Exceed Those About Obama. “Toxic misinformation has continued reaching new heights in 2020. One sign of that? ‘Birtherism’ misinformation about Senator Kamala Harris, the Democratic vice-presidential nominee, now exceeds that about President Barack Obama at its peak in 2017, according to a new analysis.”

Smithsonian Magazine: Help Transcribe Field Notes Penned by S. Ann Dunham, a Pioneering Anthropologist and Barack Obama’s Mother

Smithsonian Magazine: Help Transcribe Field Notes Penned by S. Ann Dunham, a Pioneering Anthropologist and Barack Obama’s Mother. “The S. Ann Dunham papers, 1965-2013, were donated to the NAA in 2013 by Dunham’s daughter, Maya Soetoro-Ng. The donation included field notebooks, correspondence, reports, research proposals, case studies, surveys, lectures, photographs, research files and floppy disks document of Dunham’s dissertation research on blacksmithing, and her professional work as a consultant for organizations like the Ford Foundation and Bank Raykat Indonesia (BRI). Beginning today, the public can contribute to the NAA’s effort to transcribe Dunham’s field notes.”

CNN: Obama criticizes leadership on coronavirus response, gives three pieces of advice in virtual commencement addresses

CNN: Obama criticizes leadership on coronavirus response, gives three pieces of advice in virtual commencement addresses. “Former President Barack Obama told college graduates that the ‘folks in charge’ don’t always know what they’re doing in rare public criticism of the Trump administration on Saturday. Obama criticized the handling of the coronavirus pandemic without mentioning President Donald Trump by name, just a week after privately critiquing the administration’s response to the Covid-19 crisis.”

CNET: YouTube’s virtual graduation will include Barack and Michelle Obama, BTS, Lady Gaga

CNET: YouTube’s virtual graduation will include Barack and Michelle Obama, BTS, Lady Gaga. “Not to be outdone by John Krasinski’s star-studded virtual graduation, YouTube is holding one of its own on June 6, for people whose celebrations have been stopped by the coronavirus pandemic. ‘Dear Class of 2020’ plans to feature Barack and Michelle Obama, BTS and Lady Gaga, along with Google CEO Sundar Pichai and activist Malala Yousafzai.”

Political Activism and Social Media: Friends or Foes? (McGill International Review)

McGill International Review: Political Activism and Social Media: Friends or Foes?. “Political awareness and political activism must go beyond the realm of social media. Although holding judgmental views about politicians with controversial beliefs bodes well for ensuring the legitimacy of political awareness in contemporary American politics, censuring these politicians solely through the use of social media may have undesirable effects. In light of the 2020 Democratic Party presidential primaries, Obama unsurprisingly fears that the Democrats will ‘have such a small party and will not be able to win’ if assessments of candidates are based on such purity tests.” This article does a great job of laying out all the problems with and arguments for social media activism and its accompanying mechanisms like cancel culture. But it doesn’t come to concrete conclusions, and who can blame it? Informative but unavoidably frustrating.

Brookings: With Obama’s official papers living online, what might be lost?

Brookings: With Obama’s official papers living online, what might be lost?. “The announcement that President Barack Obama’s official papers will be digitized is a break from tradition. It is clearly a nod to contemporary life, and some might view it as a welcome change from driving for miles to sift through paper documents in presidential libraries. But the decision to go digital rather than place the paper records in a research library has created a stir in the community of people who make a living doing research in presidential libraries. With presidential libraries already facing challenges, a transition to online-only resources could come at the cost of one of their greatest assets: the knowledge and commitment of the archivists, whose expertise in both the presidency and the organization of the collection is an immense resource for researchers.”