Twitter’s making a bigger bet on private messaging. The company announced on its developer blog today that starting in July it’s removing the 140-character limit on direct messages; the private messages you can send to another Twitter user. The news comes on the same day that Twitter CEO Dick Costolo announced he was stepping down.
Yeah, there’s really not a lot to say here. Emboldened by House Speaker John Boehner’s brave new low in cynical pandering, the House Judiciary Committee went there, co-opting the images of many different, probably-liberal, probably-opposed-to-harsh-immigration-crackdown-policy Hollywood actresses in the process.
Do they think that “the youth” are so dumb as to agree with anything that’s presented in listicle form? Or are they just classless?
Apparently these guys have now moved on to Russian social networks, Facebook, and Tumblr. Ugh. Please don’t pass on anything they post if you see it. Yeah, I know they’re horrible and there are people out there who delight in showing how awful some Muslims can behave, but helping this group disseminate their pathological propaganda is a really bad idea.
A jihadi forum associated with the Islamic State (IS) militant group has warned its members to avoid using the popular WhatsApp messaging application, citing security concerns. […]
The announcement warns that even though WhatsApp is a popular application for instant messaging, including among “ordinary Muslims,” it is not secure and is being used “in the war against the mujahedin.”
According to the announcement, WhatsApp is helping the National Security Agency (NSA) and Britain’s Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) to spy on users. Use of WhatsApp poses a threat to the sharing of information and pictures and a list of secure apps that can be used to share data will be released soon, the announcement says.
Considerable media attention has been given to the Islamic State group’s use of social media, including tools like WhatsApp, audio sharing site SoundCloud, and microblogging site Twitter. […]
The BBC has warned that Palestinians in Gaza and their supporters are using false images on Twitter to garner sympathy for their cause.
Many of the images that supposedly show Gaza under bombardment over the past week are neither current nor from Gaza, the global news organization wrote.
“Some of the images are of the current situation in Gaza,” the BBC said, “but a #BBCtrending analysis has found that some date as far back as 2009 and others are from conflicts in Syria and Iraq.”
Edit: Now with the link to the BBC: bbc.com
Why is Frozen such a big hit? The experts want to know, in hopes that Hollywood can create another viral megahit.
Story, characters, timing, music, acting — these are all necessary ingredients. Disney has made other hit animated classics, but why does this one cut across every demographic?
For one thing, the movie’s appeal is more universal than the usual Disney fluff, as George Bizer, a psychologist at Union College, found after interviewing college students.
While responses were predictably varied, one theme seemed to resonate: everyone could identify with Elsa. She wasn’t your typical princess. She wasn’t your typical Disney character. Born with magical powers that she couldn’t quite control, she meant well but caused harm, both on a personal scale (hurting her sister, repeatedly) and a global one (cursing her kingdom, by mistake). She was flawed—actually flawed, in a way that resulted in real mistakes and real consequences. Everyone could interpret her in a unique way and find that the arc of her story applied directly to them. For some, it was about emotional repression; for others, about gender and identity; for others still, about broader social acceptance and depression. “The character identification is the driving force,” says Wells, whose own research focusses on perception and the visual appeal of film. “It’s why people tend to identify with that medium always—it allows them to be put in those roles and experiment through that.” She recalls the sheer diversity of the students who joined the discussion: a mixture, split evenly between genders, of representatives of the L.G.B.T. community, artists, scientists. “Here they were, all so different, and they were talking about how it represents them, not ideally but realistically,” she told me.
Another strong point of appeal: the story keeps the audience engaged because it subverts expected tropes and stereotypes, over and over. “It’s the furthest thing from a typical princess movie,” Wells says. “The handsome prince is evil. The person with the magical powers is good. It spins Disney on its head.” It also, unlike prior Disney films, aces the Bechdel Test: not only are both leads female, but they certainly talk about things other than men. It is the women, in fact, not the men, who save the day, repeatedly—and a selfless act of sacrifice rather than a “kiss of true love” that ends up winning. “Frozen” is, in other words, the strong, relatable, and nuanced story that Litman and Simonton identified.
That Disney allowed social media like YouTube to reproduce the songs — especially “Let It Go” — which was quite contrary to Disney’s usual rabid copyright protectionism, helped, too.
This may not seem like a large issue - but with citizen and crowd sourced journalism likely to make a huge push this summer, if the people cannot get their information out, we will be left sourcing it from the msm - not an ideal situation in what promises to be the most tweeted event to this point in history.
Rio de Janeiro’s legendary Maracanã stadium was in a frenzy. Brazil had trounced the Spanish world champions. Yet 73,000 soccer fans could scarcely send a text message to celebrate.
The final of the 2013 Confederations Cup, a dress rehearsal for this year’s World Cup, was a promising 3-0 victory for Brazil’s national team but a bad omen for its cellphone network.
Despite costly investments and another year to prepare, phone companies are still struggling to provide adequate coverage of key sites for the tournament starting in June.
Several stadiums were delivered months late and work at major airports remains unfinished, forcing the telecoms industry to cut back and in some cases even cancel planned investments.
“Where we don’t have much time, we probably won’t be able to give complete coverage for the stadiums,” said Eduardo Levy, head of a Brazilian industry group tasked with preparing cellphone coverage at World Cup venues.
If the problems from last year recur, it may be hard for fans to make a phone call at a big game, let alone upload photos or peruse social media.
Coming in May - everything you need to know about the world’s largest sporting event :
On March 4 in Adana province, a 22-year-old woman attempted to commit suicide because she had been unexpectedly denied an abortion at a government hospital
On March 11, a peculiar headline appeared in the press and on social media: “Turkish Society of Obstetrics and Gynecology: Abortion is banned covertly.” Things get a bit tricky here, because the law has not changed. The head of the OB/GYN association, Dr. Cansun Demir, told Al-Monitor, “The option to click on ‘Abortion’ is removed from our Web page.” Hence, his doctors can no longer approve this procedure, and the government will not cover the expense.
Demir explained, “The right to choose to terminate a pregnancy based on the woman’s decision is legal, but we cannot provide the service. What is left to medical doctors is either classifying any abortion as a medical necessity or redirecting the woman to seek private care to terminate the pregnancy.” Demir said they cannot comprehend or explain the legal basis of this change to the patients, because it appears to be arbitrary.
Dozens of Popular WeChat Accounts Deleted Amidst Crackdown: Shanghaiist
WeChat is a growing social media app in China, and abroad. Within China’s borders, it’s giving Sina Weibo — a homebrewed version of Twitter — a run for its money. And like Weibo, WeChat has attracted the attention of China’s Internet censors.
Dozens of popular WeChat accounts, some with hundreds upon thousands of followers, were shut down or suspended yesterday, most likely in part of the government’s sweeping crackdown on online content.
Many of the accounts were operated by online news outlets like NetEase or popular columnists such as Xu Danei, whose account had an estimated 200,000 subscribers. South China Morning Post cited industry insiders who said the suspension order was handed down yesterday afternoon with no given reason, and that most of the shuttered accounts were known for posting commentaries on articles covering current affairs.
“No reason was given,” the insider said. “Some of the accounts were shut permanently.”
Some of America’s right wing Twitterati were complaining about a “gulag” of banned accounts last year — a gulag that exists mostly in their own heads. Here’s what a real “Twitter gulag” looks like, and what real (not imagined) government censorship looks like.
Take that, Dr. Ben Carson.
For discussion. I really disagree but I’d rather I’d rather hear from our community first. If interested anyway. My perspective might be changed by those who grew up with internet 2.0 and up.
I once worked with Steven Spielberg on the development of Minority Report, derived from the short story by Philip K. Dick featuring a future society that uses surveillance to arrest criminals before they commit a crime. I have to admit I thought Dick’s idea of “pre-crime” to be unrealistic back then. I don’t anymore.
Most likely, 50 years from now ubiquitous monitoring and surveillance will be the norm. The internet is a tracking machine. It is engineered to track. We will ceaselessly self-track and be tracked by the greater network, corporations, and governments. Everything that can be measured is already tracked, and all that was previously unmeasureable is becoming quantified, digitized, and trackable.
If today’s social media has taught us anything about ourselves as a species it is that the human impulse to share trumps the human impulse for privacy.
The remedy for over-secrecy is to think in terms of coveillance, so that we make tracking and monitoring as symmetrical — and transparent — as possible. That way the monitoring can be regulated, mistakes appealed and corrected, specific boundaries set and enforced. A massively surveilled world is not a world I would design (or even desire), but massive surveillance is coming either way because that is the bias of digital technology and we might as well surveil well and civilly.