Opinion: We’re not calling out Nicki Minaj. We’re calling her in. (Washington Post)

Washington Post: Opinion: We’re not calling out Nicki Minaj. We’re calling her in.. “Minaj’s now-infamous post follows comments from other Black musicians, such as the rapper Busta Rhymes and R&B singers Tank and Summer Walker, who have taken to stages and social media to question the safety and utility of the vaccines. Given the unique trust many Black people afford Black musicians — and the understandable skepticism with which many regard the medical establishment — it is extra critical we make sure these celebrities have all the information they need to talk about the vaccines responsibly. And the best way to do so is without judgment.”

The Center Square: Maryland launches social media initiative to combat COVID-19 misinformation

The Center Square: Maryland launches social media initiative to combat COVID-19 misinformation. “Maryland’s Department of Health is taking the battle against COVID-19 misinformation into its own hands. In a Monday morning news release, the department said it is launching a social media campaign designed to combat misinformation and disinformation related to COVID-19 to ensure accurate information is distributed about lifesaving vaccines, the importance of testing, and other facts.”

TechCrunch: DoNotPay’s ‘robot lawyer’ can now help report potholes or fallen trees to the city, file damage claims

TechCrunch: DoNotPay’s ‘robot lawyer’ can now help report potholes or fallen trees to the city, file damage claims . “DoNotPay, a company that makes annoying processes less annoying through automation, might be able to help. Their ‘robot lawyer,’ as the company calls it, started out as a service meant to help people more easily fight parking tickets. Over time it’s learned a bunch of new tricks, like helping users end tough-to-cancel subscriptions, get refunds they’re owed and more. Its latest thing? Helping users report issues like potholes, fallen trees/branches and broken streetlights to their city government — and if said issue damaged your property or cost you money, it’ll help get you paid back.”

Sora News 24: 74-year-old Japanese politician starts Instagram account for open dialog about COVID-19

Sora News 24: 74-year-old Japanese politician starts Instagram account for open dialog about COVID-19. “Shigeru Omi is the current head of the Japan Community Health Care Organization, which is the government department that manages the social health care system. Prior to that he also served as a director for the WHO and tackled past pandemics such as polio and SARS. Omi has also been heavily involved in handling the COVID-19 pandemic in Japan since February, 2020. However, despite advances in vaccines and treatments, infection rates have been soaring to their highest levels ever. Fearing that the causes for this are becoming more social than medical, the 74-year-old virologist is taking the fight against COVID-19 to an arena way outside his comfort zone: the Internet.”

Bloomberg: Who Runs Twitter’s @Twitter?

Bloomberg: Who Runs Twitter’s @Twitter?. “For most of its existence, the company used its formal Twitter accounts the way you’d expect a large, public-facing company to use its Twitter accounts. Tweets were long, and the language was formal. Then in late 2018, the company adopted a more conversational approach. Twitter’s tweets got shorter and wittier. They were suddenly topical, and sometimes downright funny. Twitter took on a voice that was noticeably self-aware, as was the case with Fleets.”

ScienceBlog: Social Media Messages From Health Care Workers Help Reduce Travel-Related Covid-19 Spread

ScienceBlog: Social Media Messages From Health Care Workers Help Reduce Travel-Related Covid-19 Spread. “A randomized evaluation of a nationwide information campaign on Facebook found that short messages from physicians and nurses had a significant impact on reducing holiday travel and decreasing subsequent Covid-19 infection rates. Researchers found that the campaign, which reached almost 30 million Facebook users, was an impactful and cost-effective way to slow the spread of Covid-19 and enact behavior change.”

NewsWise: Individualistic COVID-19 vaccine messages had best effect in US study

NewsWise: Individualistic COVID-19 vaccine messages had best effect in US study. “The study… tested messages on nearly 400 participants from across the United States in July 2020 before COVID-19 vaccines were available—and before misinformation on them was widespread. The researchers also found that ‘loss’ framing, highlighting the potential health problems from not getting a vaccine, was slightly more effective than the positive ‘gain’ framing that stresses the benefits.”

Ohio Senate: Ohio Redistricting Commission Launches Redistricting.Ohio.Gov

Ohio Senate: Ohio Redistricting Commission Launches Redistricting.Ohio.Gov. “In addition to providing details about dates and locations for the Commission’s upcoming regional public hearings, the website provides access to witness slips for Ohioans who are interested in testifying in-person or submitting written testimony to the Commission. The website also provides access to 2020 U.S. Census data, which members of the public can use to create map proposals of their own. Maps can be uploaded to the website as ZIP files.”

AP: Misinformation at public forums vexes local boards, big tech

AP: Misinformation at public forums vexes local boards, big tech. “There are plenty of places to turn for accurate information about COVID-19. Your physician. Local health departments. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control. But not, perhaps, your local government’s public comment session. During a meeting of the St. Louis County Council earlier this month, opponents of a possible mask mandate made so many misleading comments about masks, vaccines and COVID-19 that YouTube removed the video for violating its policies against false claims about the virus.”

Brookings Institution: Nigeria’s Twitter ban is a misplaced priority

Brookings Institution: Nigeria’s Twitter ban is a misplaced priority. “Political activists have the most dominant voice in the conversation while institutional actors and organizations have some of the smallest. While Nigerian citizens and activists continue to use the platform, the Nigerian government has effectively shut itself out from the conversation with only the governor of Oyo State, Seyi Makinde, still maintaining a presence on Twitter.”

Institute of Museum and Library Services: IMLS Awards More Than 200 Grants to Help Museums Meet Community Needs

Institute of Museum and Library Services: IMLS Awards More Than 200 Grants to Help Museums Meet Community Needs. “The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced grant awards totaling $29,545,363 for museums across the nation to improve services to their communities. Through the agency’s largest competitive grant program, Museums for America, and its special initiatives, Museums Empowered and Inspire! Grants for Small Museums, a total of 208 projects were selected from 758 applications requesting $99,543,356. Institutions receiving awards are matching them with $35,214,339 in non-federal funds.”

The Next Web: Algorithms are providing a way to fairly select citizens’ assemblies

The Next Web: Algorithms are providing a way to fairly select citizens’ assemblies. “In the UK and France, for example, citizens’ assemblies have been convened to deliberate responses to climate change. But selecting the members of these bodies is a complicated task. Ideally, citizens’ assemblies should be both representative and randomly selected. Balancing these two requirements is challenging as the volunteers tend to be unrepresentative of the whole population.”