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Category Archives: Internet

Instagram Now Fact-Checks, but Who Will Do the Checking?

Wired – Facebook says it will extend its fact-checking program to Instagram. But the system is already overwhelmed and may not be able to handle more information. “Facebook announced on Thursday that it would expand a fact-checking program to its Instagram image-sharing service. Instagram users in the US can now report content they believe is… Continue Reading

Linking Liability

Inside Higher Education – Sci-Hub, a repository for pirated research papers, is widely acknowledged to be illegal. But is sharing a link to the site illegal, too? “There is little dispute that Sci-Hub, the website that provides free access to millions of proprietary academic papers, is illegal. Yet, despite being successfully sued twice by major… Continue Reading

Anti-Piracy Efforts Are Unlikely to Beat Sci-Hub

Follow-up to previous posting with related links – Elsevier sends copyright threat to site for linking to Sci-Hub – see Torrent Freak – “Elsevier and other academic publishers see ‘pirate’ site Sci-Hub as a major threat to their billion-dollar industries. Many researchers, however, can’t function properly without the notorious site. Since anti-piracy efforts are unlikely… Continue Reading

Google’s ‘Assignments’ tool flags plagiarism and missing sources

engadget – Students can proactively use the tool to improve their work. “Google is setting out to make plagiarism harder than ever. The search giant today announced the launch of Assignments, a new grading software for higher education instructors who use G Suite for Education. Formerly known as Coursework, Assignments will allow instructors to create,… Continue Reading

Dark Patterns at Scale: Findings from a Crawl of 11K Shopping Websites

“Dark patterns are user interface design choices that benefit an online service by coercing, steering, or deceiving users into making unintended and potentially harmful decisions. We conducted a large-scale study, analyzing ~53K product pages from ~11K shopping websites to characterize and quantify the prevalence of dark patterns. We discovered 1,818 instances of dark patterns on… Continue Reading

Cutting the Funding of Disinformation: The Ad-Tech Solution

Global Disinformation Index: “Based on our research, we have mapped out how there is an unchecked funding line provided to disinformation domains thanks to online ads automatically placed by ad exchanges on them.” The world wide web turned 30 years old in 2019. Since its invention, how we live our lives online – and off… Continue Reading

Attempting to to keep your name and address off the internet – not easy

Cory Doctorow – Boing Boing – A tip on how to keep your name and address off the internet. “There are dozens of free “peoplefinder” sites that buy up commercial databases and combine them with other sources to make your home address searchable. You can find instances where this has happened to you by googling… Continue Reading

Update Windows 10 Immediately, Warns Microsoft

Fortune: “Microsoft is sounding a red alert to Windows 10 users, warning them to update their operating systems immediately. The company, in a blog post Tuesday, warned of two “critical” vulnerabilities that rival the previous “BlueKeep” crisis. As with that bug, the new issues are described as “wormable,” meaning hackers could use them to spread… Continue Reading

Google open-sources Live Transcribe’s speech engine

VentureBeat: “Google today open-sourced the speech engine that powers its Android speech recognition transcription tool Live Transcribe. The company hopes doing so will let any developer deliver captions for long-form conversations. The source code is available now on GitHub. Google released Live Transcribe in February. The tool uses machine learning algorithms to turn audio into… Continue Reading

The Version Museum

Kottke.org: “The mission of Version Museum is to record and present what the interfaces of software and websites looked like, from their earliest versions until now. The site’s tagline is “a visual history of your favorite technology”. Here’s the history of Facebook; …The collection isn’t huge, but the father/son team behind it hits the high… Continue Reading