Selling or sold: influencers and the commodification of social media (The Michigan Daily)

The Michigan Daily: Selling or sold: influencers and the commodification of social media. “In some ways, social media has made beauty feel more imperative for the average woman. When you’re looking up to half a dozen models in magazines or TV, it’s easy to disassociate or consider their beauty unattainable. But when you look down at your phone and see hundreds of seemingly ‘normal’ women profiting off of their adherence to — or occasional rejection of — the prevailing beauty standard, it’s much harder to draw the line between the real and idealized woman.” This is the article that led me to Lane Kizziah and y’all, her writing just sparkles. So solid.

ZDNet: On Facebook, quoting ‘Dune’ gets you suspended while posting COVID and vaccine misinformation gets you recommended

ZDNet: On Facebook, quoting ‘Dune’ gets you suspended while posting COVID and vaccine misinformation gets you recommended. “Quoting movies doesn’t hurt or result in the death of anyone. But do you know what does? Spreading misinformation about vaccines and COVID-19. That absolutely will kill people. On July 20, the internet news watchdog NewsGuard presented a report to the World Health Organization. The report’s conclusion: Not only has Facebook failed to be proactive in the removal of misinformation about vaccines and COVID-19, but the social platform is actively enabling and accelerating its spread.”

Mashable: Book clubs should always meet on Zoom

Mashable: Book clubs should always meet on Zoom. “I read a lot, and I love the low pressure engagement of a virtual book club. I was bad at attending book clubs in real life before the pandemic, because my book club friends and I all have very busy schedules, so finding a time for us all to meet up was difficult. Scheduling online hangouts is easier because you can do them from anywhere — at your family’s house, with your partner, or even from your own bed. Now that the meetups are returning to apartments and bars, scheduling is once again more difficult and, honestly, I don’t want to participate in them anymore.”

New York Times: Why People Are So Awful Online

New York Times: Why People Are So Awful Online. “Increasingly, I’ve felt that online engagement is fueled by the hopelessness many people feel when we consider the state of the world and the challenges we deal with in our day-to-day lives. Online spaces offer the hopeful fiction of a tangible cause and effect — an injustice answered by an immediate consequence. On Twitter, we can wield a small measure of power, avenge wrongs, punish villains, exalt the pure of heart. In our quest for this simulacrum of justice, however, we have lost all sense of proportion and scale.”

The Verge: The Day the Good Internet Died

The Verge: The Day the Good Internet Died. “Logging on feels like participating in the setup to a Yogi Berra 2.0 ‘terrible food, and such small portions!’–style joke—except that the punch line is about, like, public health statistics instead of prime rib. In the past week alone, the president of the United States and Facebook, each citing the tech company’s handling of pandemic info, have bickered publicly about, oh, just Facebook’s ratio of murderousness to societal benefit. (In other news, there’s a new Space Jam movie out with a villain who is an evil computer named ‘Al-G Rhythm.’)”

Opinion: This San Francisco-based website is neo-Nazis’ favorite to spread their hatred (SF Gate)

SF Gate: Opinion: This San Francisco-based website is neo-Nazis’ favorite to spread their hatred. “For the past decade, Middle East Media Research Institute (MEMRI) research has been exposing the Internet Archive’s enabling of Al-Qaeda, ISIS and other jihadi propaganda efforts and its function as a database for their distribution of materials, recruitment campaigns, incitement of violence, fundraising and even daily radio programs. We wrote that ISIS liked the platform because there was no way to flag objectionable content for review and removal — unlike on other platforms such as YouTube. Today, the Internet Archive enables neo-Nazis and white supremacists in the same ways, and its terms of use still deny responsibility for content uploaded to it.”

Mashable: Facebook’s response to Biden and his COVID misinfo criticism is a big miss

Mashable: Facebook’s response to Biden and his COVID misinfo criticism is a big miss. “Even if Facebook’s argument is that the company is doing everything correctly now, the fact is that the algorithm it created, which continues to award reactionary content — i.e. conspiracy theories, misinformation — that receives the most engagement, undermines positive efforts. Also, there’s plenty of damage done before corrective actions can be taken in the first place.”

The Scotsman: A backlash is growing against sexist abuse on social media that gives me hope – Laura Waddell

The Scotsman: A backlash is growing against sexist abuse on social media that gives me hope – Laura Waddell. “What the most serious incidents I’ve experienced have in common is misogyny. Every time I’ve received online abuse I can’t easily ignore, implicating my physical safety, it has been tinged with misogynist language. Like domestic abusers, online abusers evoke fear and intimidation. That’s bad enough. But what can be even more demoralising for the victim is seeing others excuse aggression towards women. No matter how blatantly intimidating the missives, on every occasion I’ve been seriously abused online, representatives of the old boys’ network have appeared to congregate around the offender.”

Sydney Morning Herald: Privacy laws must change to protect kids from social media data harvesting

Sydney Morning Herald: Privacy laws must change to protect kids from social media data harvesting. “One estimate suggests more than 72 million data points are collected about children by advertisers alone before they turn the ripe age of 13. So much what they say, think, do is being sneakily tracked and stolen without meaningful consent. But why does consent in this case matter? The perpetrators are some of the most powerful and wealthy companies on the planet.”

The Atlantic: You Really Need to Quit Twitter

The Atlantic: You Really Need to Quit Twitter. “I’m almost 60, and in these many decades I’ve seen people—some of them good friends—taken down by all kinds of things. Alcohol and drugs, mostly. A few years ago, I lost someone to heroin, and hundreds of us sat at his funeral in wordless communion. I know a couple of people who couldn’t shake gambling, and many plagued by food and sex and all the other great distractions. But in all these years—almost 60!—I haven’t had trouble with any of those things. Until now. You know what finally took me down? Fucking Twitter.”

Sydney Morning Herald: National Archives funding welcomed, but more needed

Sydney Morning Herald: National Archives funding welcomed, but more needed. “When one of Australia’s most experienced public servants, David Tune, conducted an extensive review of the National Archives’ funding requirements he stressed that a piecemeal approach to saving the nation’s records would never be enough. Structural reform was essential. That is important to keep in mind, because while the federal government’s recently announced provision of $67.7 million to preserve the most at-risk items of Australia’s history is certainly welcome, much more is needed.”

The Citizen (Tanzania): The UN’s refugee data shame, and what needs to be done

The Citizen (Tanzania): The UN’s refugee data shame, and what needs to be done. “Back in 2017, I wrote of the risks of the UN’s refugee agency, UNHCR, collecting biometric registration data from Rohingya refugees, noting that the data could be used to drive unwilling repatriation; that collecting such data may make refugees believe their access to aid depends upon providing such data; and that – once collected or shared – such biometric data is virtually impossible to get rid of. Nearly four years later, a report from Human Rights Watch (HRW) says these worst-case scenarios have come true: A detailed database of the Rohingya refugee population has been handed over to Myanmar’s government, which drove them across the border into Bangladesh almost four years ago.”

Techdirt: Changing Section 230 Won’t Make The Internet A Kinder, Gentler Place

Techdirt: Changing Section 230 Won’t Make The Internet A Kinder, Gentler Place. “Users dedicated to spreading lies or hateful content are a tiny minority, but weakening Section 230 will make their job easier. When content moderation doesn’t go their way—and it usually doesn’t—they’re willing to sue. As the cases below show, Section 230 is rightfully used to quickly dismiss their lawsuits. If lawmakers weaken Section 230, these meritless suits will linger in court longer, costing online services more and making them leery of moderate the speech of known litigious users. That result could make it easier for these users to spread lies online.”