Chronicle of Higher Education: Every Sunday, These Historians Go to the Movies — All in the Name of Digital Community. “Have you ever, while watching the movie Julie & Julia, drawn comparisons between Julia Child’s struggle to find the right publisher and the mercurial marketplace of academic publishing? You probably haven’t. But historians have.”
The Verge: How A Vermont Social Network Became A Model For Online Communities. “Front Porch Forum had come to Moretown just months before, but the site had spread throughout much of the state, town by town, since it was founded in 2000 in Burlington. The site looks like a relic from another era; its website is clean and minimal, without the pictures, reaction buttons or comment fields that most social platforms have implemented today. Users register using their real name and address, and gain access to the forum for their town or neighborhood. This network of 185 forums covers each town in Vermont, as well as a handful in neighboring New York and New Hampshire.”
Mozilla Blog: The Coral Project is Moving to Vox Media. “Since 2015, the Mozilla Foundation has incubated The Coral Project to support journalism and improve online dialog around the world through privacy-centered, open source software. Originally founded as a two-year collaboration between Mozilla, The New York Times and the Washington Post, it became entirely a Mozilla project in 2017.” Is it just me or does it feel like Mozilla is just shedding a lot of stuff?
Lifehacker: Find Specialty Subreddits With This Tool. “The cool thing about Reddit is that you can subscribe to just the subreddits you like, and ignore everything you don’t. The smaller, more specialized subreddits are the best, but they’re harder to find. The new tool sayit helps you find them.”
The Verge: Facebook shelved a feature intended to promote civil political discourse. “The Wall Street Journal reports that Facebook had begun working on a feature that would encourage users of opposing political beliefs to interact in a more positive way. But the project — known as ‘Common Ground’ — was reportedly halted after Facebook’s global head of policy raised concerns that it could lead to accusations that the site was biased against conservatives.”
Charged: Fortnite isn’t a game, it’s a place. “I’ve played a lot of Fortnite this year, and I was struggling to understand why I liked the game so much. It’s fun to play, but usually I get bored of multiplayer because I’m being constantly killed, can’t keep up with the hardcore players or it just gets stale. Fortnite is different, because it’s not even about the game at all: it’s a place we’re all going together.”
EurekAlert: Subtle visual cues nudge users to reveal more in online forum. “In a study, researchers found that people using an online sexual health forum featuring computer graphics, called icons, that implied a sense of crowd size and connectivity, revealed more sensitive information than visitors to a site without those visual cues, said S. Shyam Sundar, James P. Jimirro Professor of Media Effects and co-director of the Media Effects Research Laboratory. Pictures meant to convey a sense of community on the web forum did not significantly affect the user’s disclosure, he added.”