Illinois Aces: You say Cairo, I say Cairo: New online resource provides audio pronunciation of Illinois places and landmarks. “A University of Illinois agricultural communications researcher and her students have created an online resource that offers proper audio pronunciation examples of places and landmarks across the state of Illinois. The tool was designed not only for broadcasters or news anchors, but for anyone publicly speaking about places in Illinois. And, of course, those curious about Illinois will also enjoy using the tool.”
Purdue University: Online tool identifies best and safest places to keep bees. “Beekeepers must… identify safe places to establish their colonies. A new online tool, developed by entomologists from Penn State University in partnership with Purdue University, the University of Illinois, the University of Minnesota and Dickinson College, helps them do just that.” Currently the tool only provides information for Indiana, Illinois, and Pennsylvania, but more states will be added over time.
Chicago Sun-Times: Cook County board votes to permanently dismantle gang database. “The Cook County Board voted to destroy the county’s gang database Thursday, setting legal steps and guidelines to make sure the database can’t be restarted. The vote was the death knell for the contentious database, also called the Regional Gang Intelligence Database. Last month, the Cook County Sheriff’s Office announced it had ‘terminated’ the database, a decision that came after no other law enforcement agency agreed to host it.”
Effingham Daily News: Illinois cultural journalism collection now available for free in Digital Public Library. “The complete contents of a south-central Illinois cultural journalism project, ‘Tales from the General Store,’ is now available at no cost in the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA). In the tradition of Foxfire, the Tales project was created by author and now-retired educator Ray Elliott to provide the opportunity for high school and college students to learn about journalism through hands-on experience in interviewing and writing about people from rural Illinois who lived and worked during the early part of the 20th century when general stores were at the heart of small, tight-knit communities. In addition to the educational student benefit, these stories have helped to preserve some of the history and culture of this era in Illinois for the public.”
The Verge: Crucial biometric privacy law survives Illinois court fight. “Privacy advocates won a crucial court victory on Friday, as the Illinois Supreme Court dismissed a case that would have pared back a state law limiting the use of facial recognition and other biometrics.”
Northern Public Radio: New Illinois Law Includes Unwanted Social Media Messages As Stalking Behavior. “Unwanted social media messages are now on the list of behaviors that can be cited when petitioning to file for stalking ‘no-contact order.’ That’s one of the hundreds of new Illinois laws that went into effect in the new year. Previously, phone calls, text messages and emails were included, but not messages from platforms like Facebook or Twitter.”
ProPublica Illinois: How to Use the Ticket Trap, Our New Database That Lets You Explore How Chicago Tickets Motorists and Collects Debt. “This week, we published a new database that lets you explore how ticketing, debt and the rates at which people appeal their tickets compare across Chicago’s 50 wards. We call it The Ticket Trap. Why? Because as our reporting over the past year has shown, thousands of Chicago motorists — particularly residents of low-income and black neighborhoods — lose their right to drive or lose their vehicles. Many file for bankruptcy as a way out.”