Facebook’s only Dutch factchecker quits over political ad exemption

Facebook’s only Dutch factchecker quits over political ad exemption | Technology | The Guardian


Trump-China trade war: The industries hurt by US tariffs – Business Insider

Farmers in some US states are being forced into plowing their crops under — effectively burying them under soil in fields — as there is not enough room to store them in storage facilities, and they are unable to sell their products thanks to Chinese tariffs, Reuters reported last week.

All grain depots and silos are almost full, meaning farmers have to find their own storage solutions or allow their crops to rot. Neither option is particularly palatable.

…Manufacturing activity in the US slowed to a six-month low in October, with industry figures citing future protectionism and widespread uncertainty as major reasons for the slowdown.

“For the consumer, the tariffs are for the most part still an abstract idea, but for manufacturers they are real, and a big problem.”

Trump-China trade war: The industries hurt by US tariffs – Business Insider


A Reminder That ‘Fake News’ Is An Information Literacy Problem – Not A Technology Problem

Children are taught to regurgitate what others tell them and to rely on digital assistants to curate the world rather than learn to navigate the informational landscape on their own. Schools no longer teach source triangulation, conflict arbitration, separating fact from opinion, citation chaining, conducting research or even the basic concept of verification and validation. In short, we’ve stopped teaching society how to think about information, leaving our citizenry adrift in the digital wilderness increasingly saturated with falsehoods without so much as a compass or map to help them find their way to safety.

…[Silicon] Valley has doubled down on technological solutions to combating digital falsehoods, focusing on harnessing legions of “fact checkers” and turning to Website and content blacklists, algorithmic tweaks and other quick fixes that have done little to turn the tide.

…How is it possible that the nation’s most prestigious scholars and scientists at preeminent research institutions and universities could all suspend their disbelief and blindly believe that an anonymous Twitter account claiming to be a secret society “resisting” their government was everything it claimed to be without the slightest bit of verification?

…Algorithms can help citizens sort through the deluge of information around them, identifying contested narratives and disputed facts, but technology alone is not a panacea. There is no magical algorithm that can eliminate all false and misleading information online.

To truly solve the issue of “fake news” we must blend technological assistance with teaching our citizens to be literate consumers of the world around them.

Societies must teach their children from a young age how to perform research, understand sourcing, triangulate information, triage contested narratives and recognize the importance of where information comes from, not just what it says.

…A more information literate society would likely bring with it considerable economic harm to today’s viral-obsessed social platforms that thrive on digital falsehoods, meaning there will be considerable resistance from Silicon Valley to a more information literate society.

A Reminder That ‘Fake News’ Is An Information Literacy Problem – Not A Technology Problem


Errrr… Senator?

It is the accepted truth of Silicon Valley that every problem has a technological solution.

Most importantly, in the eyes of the Valley, every problem can be solved exclusively through technology without requiring society to do anything on its own. A few algorithmic tweaks, a few extra lines of code and all the world’s problems can be simply coded out of existence.

Sadly for the Valley’s technological determinists, this is far from the truth.

A Reminder That ‘Fake News’ Is An Information Literacy Problem – Not A Technology Problem

I’m just going to park this here to refer to when the desire to give a certain Senator shit for simplistic solutions to complex problems (that require actual humans to solve!) comes up.

How To Tell When Someone Else Tweets From @realDonaldTrump

 This proved particularly challenging during version one of the Trump administration, when press secretary Sean Spicer, chief of staff Reince Priebus, and alt-right interpreter Steve Bannon all had yet to be ousted. Along with advisor Kellyanne Conway, they all likely took a spin on Trump’s Twitter account at some point.

…Though he may be adept (enough) at Twitter, Trump isn’t known for being tech savvy. About two years ago, The New York Times noted that Trump “has no computer in his office (a staff member brings in a laptop to show him videos) and asks aides to print his emails for consumption the old-fashioned way.” This means that any time you see an image or video attached to one of Trump’s tweets, our good friend Dan was almost certainly the mastermind.

…Trump generally dictated tweets to his assistants during the work day, but would send out his own missives during down time. According to a different report from Trump’s first weeks in the White House, at around 6:30 pm he generally heads back to the residence to mainline cable news until sometime after midnight. So it’s relatively safe to assume that any text-only tweets coming out of @realDonaldTrump in the evening (assuming, of course, he’s not off at a rally) were typed by the man himself.

The morning, however, is when Donald Trump truly shines. Usually up by around 6 am ET or so, the president can often get a good three or four hours of Fox News under his belt before he has to go pretend to listen to the daily intelligence briefing at 10. 

…If it’s text-only and sent between 6 pm and 10 am, Donald Trump probably did the tweet.

…If it looks like it was written by the Flowers for Algernon guy after the meds start wearing off, Donald Trump probably did the tweet.

Donald Trump does not know how to thread his tweets. He certainly seems to understand that it’s a thing people do, since at some point over the last year, he started using ellipses to indicate that he wasn’t quite done yet.

Trump does not, however, seem to know that replying to his own tweets would connect his thoughts in chronological order for him, which makes for some incredible disembodied half-thoughts.

Scavino has a knack for adopting Trump’s latest mannerisms, though, and the ellipses is no different. That’s why the real tell is the threading—Scavino can’t bring himself to not take advantage of the site’s features.

…If the tweetstorm consists of a series of disconnected nonsense, Donald Trump probably did the tweet.

How To Tell When Someone Else Tweets From @realDonaldTrump | WIRED


Harris Policy Proposals That Got Lost in that Shitshow of a Campaign

Under Harris’ proposal, homebuyers who rent or live in historically redlined communities can apply for a federal grant of up to $25,000 to assist with down payments or closing costs. Harris’ campaign estimates that this will help up to 4 million families.

Redlining is the discriminatory practice of denying financial or other services for low-income and minority communities.

Harris’ policy proposal also aims to prevent discrimination in home sales, rentals and loans by promising to strengthen and strictly enforce anti-discrimination laws.

…In May, Harris reintroduced her 2018 bill to tackle racial disparities in maternal health and rolled out her proposal to fine companies that don’t achieve pay equity

Harris’ education proposal — her first major policy as a presidential candidate — would boost teacher pay, make additional investments in public schools and support programs dedicated to teacher recruitment, training and professional development, particularly at historically black colleges and universities.

Kamala Harris unveils $100 billion black homeownership plan – CNNPolitics