The City Paper: Colombia to lift indoor face mask mandate within weeks

The City Paper: Colombia to lift indoor face mask mandate within weeks. “After a week in which Colombia registered record lows in per-day infections and deaths from coronavirus, the country’s Minister of Health, Fernando Ruíz confirmed in an interview with El Tiempo that the indoor face mask mandate could be lifted ‘within weeks.’ The declaration comes as Colombia registered one death from COVID-19 on Wednesday, and has averaged below 10 during the last fortnight.”

University of Notre Dame: Literatures of Annihilation, Exile, and Resistance Launches New Website

University of Notre Dame: Literatures of Annihilation, Exile, and Resistance Launches New Website. “The new website includes an archive of recorded events featuring transnational writers and scholars from Iraq, Iran, Palestine, Syria, Egypt, Lebanon, Colombia, Chile and the United States whose work bears witness to truth and history and to the global struggle for freedom.”

By boat, by motorbike, by foot: The journey to vaccinate Colombia’s remotest communities (Washington Post)

Washington Post: By boat, by motorbike, by foot: The journey to vaccinate Colombia’s remotest communities. “Across the Andes, a region that has reported some of the world’s highest covid-19 death rates, teams are traversing deserts, mountains, rainforests and rivers to vaccinate isolated communities. Such teams are particularly active in Colombia, a country of more than 48 million people, where about 16 percent of the population lives in rural areas that were often neglected by the government during more than five decades of armed conflict.”

The City Paper: Colombia home to 20% of world’s butterfly species, reveals report

The City Paper: Colombia home to 20% of world’s butterfly species, reveals report. “The yellow butterflies that swarm the imaginary and magical landscapes of Nobel Laureate Gabriel García Márquez’s One Hundred Years of Solitude are just one species of 3,642 that inhabit the very real Colombia, and country home to 20% of all butterfly species on the planet. The findings are the result of years of research by scientists, collectors, students and amateurs documenting species across topographically challenging terrain. The list of 3,642 species and 2,085 subspecies was compiled by Dr Blanca Huertas, Senior Curator at the Natural History Museum in London.”

BBC: Venezuelans brave ‘brutal’ migrant route made tougher by pandemic

BBC: Venezuelans brave ‘brutal’ migrant route made tougher by pandemic. “Ángel García breathed heavily through his mouth as he hiked out of Pamplona, a scenic town nested in the Andes Mountains and located 2,300 meters above sea level. With his belongings stuffed into a blue back-pack and a red gym bag that hung from his right shoulder, the 21-year-old was making a 1,600km (1,000 mile) trek to the Colombian city of Cali, where he was hoping to live with a cousin and find construction work.”

Reuters: Colombia orders Google to comply with data protection rules

Reuters: Colombia orders Google to comply with data protection rules. “Colombian regulators on Friday ordered Alphabet Inc’s Google to clearly ask each user whether the world’s largest search engine can use their personal data which is being captured without authorization. Non-compliance could lead to investigations, sanctions and fines equivalent to 1.76 billion pesos ($480,500), the Superintendency of Industry and Commerce said in a statement.”

BBC: How a Colombian market is using AI to combat Covid-19 outbreaks

BBC: How a Colombian market is using AI to combat Covid-19 outbreaks. “Mr Palacio explains how they use facial recognition software connected to cameras at the entrances and to security cameras around the building to collect data on the vendors and market-dwellers. Among the data they collect is their age range, gender, and if the person is wearing their mask correctly in order to assess risks and more vulnerable demographics. Thermal cameras can take the temperature of 200 people per minute, he says. If someone has a high temperature or wears their mask incorrectly, an alarm will go off and alert market security.”

BBC: Anonymous letters providing solace in the pandemic

BBC: Anonymous letters providing solace in the pandemic. “When the letter arrived at Daniel Guzmán’s doorstep, it provided him with a glimmer of hope during one of the hardest moments of his life. ‘Keep going, when this is all over, you will walk out of the house with your head held high and your heart willing to give the best of you,’ it read. It was signed simply ‘Niña Peregrina’ (Spanish for ‘Wandering Girl’) Niña Peregrina’s was one one of hundreds of letters that have been exchanged by complete strangers in the Colombian city of Medellín during the country’s months-long quarantine.”

Bloomberg: It’s Covid Code Red in Latin America With No Signs of Peaking

Bloomberg: It’s Covid Code Red in Latin America With No Signs of Peaking. “When a top World Health Organization official this week declared Latin America the new epicenter for Covid-19, few experts in the region needed to be persuaded. The data are overwhelming — and overwhelmingly dreadful. The number of regional cases stands at 1.17 million. Demographic giants Brazil and Mexico are posting among the fastest growth rates and logging daily death records. Viral illness is also rising in Peru, Colombia, Chile and Bolivia.”

Yale News: Yale, Field Museum map species diversity in South American national parks

Yale News: Yale, Field Museum map species diversity in South American national parks. “Park rangers, naturalists, tourists, educators, and land managers can now take a virtual tour of species diversity across three South American countries thanks to a new information dashboard created by researchers at Yale University and the Field Museum in Chicago. The Biodiversity Dashboard lists almost 5,500 species found in and around national parks in three of the world’s most biodiverse countries: Colombia, Ecuador, and Peru.”

Reuters: Colombia’s coronavirus app troubles show rocky path without tech from Apple, Google

Reuters: Colombia’s coronavirus app troubles show rocky path without tech from Apple, Google. “Colombia has removed the contact-tracing feature in its official app for informing residents about the novel coronavirus after experiencing glitches, but aims to rebuild using potentially more reliable technology from Apple Inc and Alphabet Inc’s Google, a government official told Reuters.”

Remezcla: This Photo Archive Holds the Untold History of Colombia’s Trans Community

Remezcla: This Photo Archive Holds the Untold History of Colombia’s Trans Community. “Each photograph is a gateway to many stories. That’s what the Bogotá-born artist Manuel Parra, known as Manu Mojito, learned early on as he met the trans ‘mothers’ of Colombia’s capital. These women shared with him vintage photographs from their family albums — of parties, beauty pageants, pride parades and of complex lives that had gone unnoticed by most of society. Then, almost eight years ago, Parra conceived the idea of Colombia Trans History. He imagined an archive of images, taken from the photo albums of trans women, that could weave together an alternative telling of trans women’s history in relation to what had been narrated by the predominant media of the times, which usually framed trans women as criminals.”

What’s Up with WhatsApp: The Widespread Use of WhatsApp in Political Campaigning in the Global South (Tactical Tech)

Tactical Tech: What’s Up with WhatsApp: The Widespread Use of WhatsApp in Political Campaigning in the Global South. “The past few years have seen WhatsApp become an increasingly powerful and influential tool for political campaigns in the Global South. For many people in the Global North, it may come as a surprise that participation in large WhatsApp groups constitutes the majority of online communication for many users in South America, Africa and Southeast Asia. While WhatsApp helps politicians reach voters and constituents in areas that don’t otherwise have access to the internet, it also extends the reach and primacy of Facebook (who own the platform) in the democratic process in these countries. This article reveals some of the many ways WhatsApp is being deployed as a major part of the political process in countries including Brazil, Colombia, Kenya and Malaysia.”

Nieman Lab: La Pulla’s wildly popular YouTube videos (born at a 130-year-old newspaper) are bringing hard news to young Colombians

Nieman Lab: La Pulla’s wildly popular YouTube videos (born at a 130-year-old newspaper) are bringing hard news to young Colombians. “María Paulina Baena gets stopped on the streets of Bogota, Colombia. Young people ask to take selfies with her and tell her how much they love La Pulla. The 27-year-old is the public face of the satirical video column that has shaken up the way young people consume news in Colombia. Created two years ago by five young journalists from the country’s oldest newspaper, the 130-year-old El Espectador, La Pulla has succeeded at what publishers worldwide long to do — connect with millennial audiences.”