CNN: The hard lesson of Dr. Deborah Birx

CNN: The hard lesson of Dr. Deborah Birx. “She, like many of us, had no idea how badly his administration would distort, ignore and deny science and the truth during the pandemic. Although she said she took the job out of a sense of obligation (‘That’s what a civil servant is supposed to do,’ she said a year later), Birx became inextricably tied to the harmful decisions of her negligent, disastrously ignorant boss.”

The Guardian: Specialist Covid infection control scientist faces threat of deportation from UK

The Guardian: Specialist Covid infection control scientist faces threat of deportation from UK. “An infection control specialist who has been offered a job as a senior NHS biomedical scientist to help tackle the pandemic is facing deportation by the Home Office, prompting fresh calls for a more ‘humane’ approach to skilled migrants. The government has refused Charles Oti, 46, from Nigeria the right to remain in the UK even though the job he was offered is among the government’s most sought-after skilled positions.”

Just Security: A Dozen Experts with Questions Congress Should Ask the Tech CEOs — On Disinformation and Extremism

Just Security: A Dozen Experts with Questions Congress Should Ask the Tech CEOs — On Disinformation and Extremism. “Next Thursday will be the first time the tech CEOs will face Congress since the January 6th siege on the U.S. Capitol, where different groups of individuals incited by disinformation campaigns led by former President Donald Trump and his allies sought to prevent the certification of the presidential election. Questions about the role of the tech platforms in contributing to radicalization and extremism and propagating disinformation related to the election are expected, according to a press release from the Committee. They are also interested in the spread of disinformation about the coronavirus pandemic.”

Duke Today: How To Reduce Severity Of The Next Global Virus Outbreak

Duke Today: How To Reduce Severity Of The Next Global Virus Outbreak. “As more people get the COVID-19 vaccine, light appears at the end of a long, bleak tunnel. But there’s far more work to do to stave off the next global virus outbreak – a future pandemic that experts say is likely if not assured. There are plenty of improvements possible, from closer relationships between public health officials and food producers to a more cohesive, global virus response network. Three Duke experts discussed these and other issues Thursday in a virtual briefing for media.”

Iowa Public Radio: Iowa Governor Did Not Consult Public Health Department Before Removing Mask Mandate, Democrats Say

Iowa Public Radio: Iowa Governor Did Not Consult Public Health Department Before Removing Mask Mandate, Democrats Say. “Multiple Democratic lawmakers said the director of the Iowa Department of Public Health told them… that Gov. Kim Reynolds did not ask for the department’s input before removing the state’s limited mask mandate. The department and the governor’s office did not deny these reports.”

The Register: AI brain drain to Google and pals threatens public sector’s ability to moderate machine-learning bias

The Register: AI brain drain to Google and pals threatens public sector’s ability to moderate machine-learning bias. “Boffins from Denmark and the UK have measured the AI brain drain and found that private industry really is soaking up tech talent at the expense of academia and public organizations. In a paper [PDF] distributed via ArXiv, authors Roman Jurowetzki and Daniel Hain, from Aalborg University Business School, and Juan Mateos-Garcia and Konstantinos Stathoulopoulos, from British charity Nesta, describe how they analyzed over 786,000 AI research studies released between 2000 and 2020 to trace career shifts from academia to industry and less frequent reverse migrations.”

Ubergizmo: TikTok Rolls Out A New Q&A Feature For Creators

Ubergizmo: TikTok Rolls Out A New Q&A Feature For Creators. “One of the cool features about Instagram’s Stories is the Q&A section, where creators can allow users to submit them questions that they can ask, or ask for answers/opinions from their followers. It’s pretty nifty and adds a degree of interaction to the platform. Now it looks like TikTok will be getting a similar feature as well.”

News @ Northeastern: On Twitter, Journalists And Politicians Have More Credibility On Vaccines Than Medical Experts, Study Finds

News @ Northeastern: On Twitter, Journalists And Politicians Have More Credibility On Vaccines Than Medical Experts, Study Finds . “Black, Indigenous, and other non-white people in the United States are more likely to rely on trusted voices within their own communities for information about the pandemic and the coronavirus vaccine, finds a new study led by researchers from Northeastern. And, at least on Twitter, all people are more receptive to information shared by journalists and politicians on both the left and right than by epidemiologists, scientists, and medical professionals.”

University at Buffalo: Twitter was right to suspend Trump’s account, UB expert says

University at Buffalo: Twitter was right to suspend Trump’s account, UB expert says. “UB geographer Monica Stephens agrees with Twitter’s decision to suspend President Donald Trump’s account following Wednesday’s insurrection in which his supporters stormed the U.S. Capitol to disrupt the process of confirming President-elect Joe Biden’s electoral victory. ‘I think that given the circumstances, Twitter did the right thing,’ says Stephens assistant professor in the Department of Geography who analyzes social media to understand how user-generated content is impacting communities, social relations and democratic processes.”

Facts won’t fix this: experts on how to fight America’s disinformation crisis (The Guardian)

The Guardian: Facts won’t fix this: experts on how to fight America’s disinformation crisis. “The consequences of Donald Trump’s repeated, baseless claims of voter fraud will come in several waves, researchers who study disinformation say, even if Trump ultimately hands over power and leaves the White House. And there is no quick or easy way to fix this crisis, they warn. Because when it comes to dealing with disinformation, simply repeating the facts doesn’t do much to change anyone’s mind.”

Exclusive: Utah leaders went rogue in early coronavirus response, emails from health experts show (Salt Lake Tribune)

Salt Lake Tribune: Exclusive: Utah leaders went rogue in early coronavirus response, emails from health experts show. “The powerful state budget managers who controlled key parts of Utah’s initial coronavirus response were skeptical about the value of medical expertise in handling the crisis and made repeated attempts to resist or subvert health officials, according to records obtained by The Salt Lake Tribune.”

Associated Press: Pandemic backlash jeopardizes public health powers, leaders

Associated Press: Pandemic backlash jeopardizes public health powers, leaders. “Across the United States, state and local public health officials such as [Tisha] Coleman have found themselves at the center of a political storm as they combat the worst pandemic in a century. With the federal response fractured, the usually invisible army of workers charged with preventing the spread of infectious diseases has become a public punching bag. Their expertise on how to fight the coronavirus is often disregarded.”

Washington Post: CIA psychological profiler who labeled Trump ‘dangerous’ dies of covid-19 at 86

Washington Post: CIA psychological profiler who labeled Trump ‘dangerous’ dies of covid-19 at 86. “As a pioneering psychological profiler for the Central Intelligence Agency and later as a consultant, Jerrold M. Post plumbed the lives, leadership styles and, at times, the mental illness of foreign heads around the globe. Over decades, his expertise and instincts were greatly in demand, especially at the White House.”