Politico: Team Trump quietly launches new social media platform

Politico: Team Trump quietly launches new social media platform. “Former President Donald Trump’s team quietly launched a new social media platform on Thursday, billing it as an alternative to Big Tech sites. The platform, called GETTR, advertised its mission statement as ‘fighting cancel culture, promoting common sense, defending free speech, challenging social media monopolies, and creating a true marketplace of ideas.’”

Pew: 70% of U.S. social media users never or rarely post or share about political, social issues

Pew (PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW!): 70% of U.S. social media users never or rarely post or share about political, social issues. “When asked about five potential reasons for why they do not post about these topics, the top two reasons users cite are concerns that the things they post or share will be used against them and not wanting to be attacked for their views. About a third of those who never or rarely post or share about these issues say that each statement is a major reason.”

Fighting online extremism: Polarization in social media and how to improve the public conversation (Phys .org)

Phys .org: Fighting online extremism: Polarization in social media and how to improve the public conversation. “In his new book, “Breaking the Social Media Prism,” [Chris] Bail dives into political polarization and its manifestations on social media platforms like Twitter and Facebook. Spun from research he and others have done at Duke’s Polarization Lab, Bail examines why political partisans are so unlikely to be swayed by other points of view, and offers tips and tools for people attempting to navigate social media in good faith.”

KSNT: Kansas bill seeks to prevent social media sites from blocking political speech

KSNT: Kansas bill seeks to prevent social media sites from blocking political speech. “After the 2020 election and the controversies that followed, Hutchinson Senator Mark Steffen decided to sponsor a bill to address what social media allows. The new proposal specifically states that harassing and objectionable speech cannot include political information or expression.”

PsyPost: New study sheds light on the complicated relationship between Trump support and the COVID-19 pandemic

PsyPost: New study sheds light on the complicated relationship between Trump support and the COVID-19 pandemic. “Donald Trump appears to have benefited from a rally-round-the-flag effect among Republicans concerned with COVID-19 during the early stages of the novel coronavirus outbreak in the United States, according to new research published in PLOS One. But this effect had reversed itself just a few months later.”

CNN: Right-wing misinformation on Facebook is more engaging than its left-wing counterpart, research finds

CNN: Right-wing misinformation on Facebook is more engaging than its left-wing counterpart, research finds. “According to the research, accounts rated by outside media watchdogs as being far-right and frequent spreaders of misinformation are far more likely to generate likes, shares and other forms of engagement on their respective Facebook pages than right-wing sources of reliable information — which in turn are better at generating engagement than left-wing sources of misinformation.”

Phys .org: Different social media platforms foster different levels of segregation in online communities

Phys .org: Different social media platforms foster different levels of segregation in online communities. “A team of researchers from Ca’Foscari Univerity of Venice, the Institute for Scientific Interchange Foundation, the University of Brescia and the Sapienza University of Rome has found that different kinds of social media platforms foster different levels of segregation in online communities. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group describes their study of millions of online posts on several leading social media sites and what they found.”

How Americans Navigated the News in 2020: A Tumultuous Year in Review (Pew Research)

Pew (PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW PEW!): How Americans Navigated the News in 2020: A Tumultuous Year in Review. “From November 2019 through December 2020, the Pathways project explored how Americans’ news habits and attitudes related to what they heard, perceived and knew about the 2020 presidential election and COVID-19…. Over the course of the year, as part of the project, the Center published more than 50 individual analyses and made data from more than 580 survey questions available to the public in an interactive data tool. We now have the opportunity to look back at the findings over the full course of the year and gather together the key takeaways that emerged.”

Dr. Anthony Fauci: Divisiveness has failed America “in every single way” (CBS News)

CBS News: Dr. Anthony Fauci: Divisiveness has failed America “in every single way”. “It is a measure of Tony Fauci’s durability that, at the age of 80 he has just taken on a new title, working for Joe Biden – his seventh president – as his chief medical advisor. ‘What we’re gonna be seeing over the next months is much more of a coordinated, synergistic partnership between the federal government and the states,’ Fauci said. ‘So, I believe we’re gonna see a turnaround in attitude when the federal government and the states start working together much more, as opposed to “You’re on your own.”‘

Wired: Platforms Must Pay for Their Role in the Insurrection

Wired: Platforms Must Pay for Their Role in the Insurrection. “In their relentless pursuit of engagement and profits, these platforms created algorithms that amplify hate speech, disinformation, and conspiracy theories. This harmful content is particularly engaging and serves as the lubricant for businesses as profitable as they are influential. These platforms also enforce their terms of service in ways that favor extreme speech and behavior, predominantly right-wing extremism.”

Slate: Facebook Kowtowed to Conservatives and Got Nothing in Return

Slate: Facebook Kowtowed to Conservatives and Got Nothing in Return. “Facebook has spent much of the past four years kowtowing to conservatives, treating right-wing news outlets with kid gloves even as they flouted its rules and spread disinformation, while bending over backward to avoid offending the Trump administration. By almost all accounts, the company hoped that playing nice would stave off any kind of serious regulatory crackdown on its business, or at least spare it some angry presidential tweets (while, of course, keeping Republican eyeballs glued to its news feed). This strategy seems to have failed rather badly.”