Skip to main content

Co-founder of Elgg and Known; former investor at Matter;
CTO at The 19th.

benwerd

benwerd

benwerd

19thnews.org

 

Rohingya seek reparations from Facebook for role in massacre

“But a new and comprehensive report by Amnesty International states that Facebook’s preferred narrative is false. The platform, Amnesty says, wasn’t merely a passive site with insufficient content moderation. Instead, Meta’s algorithms “proactively amplified and promoted content” on Facebook, which incited violent hatred against the Rohingya beginning as early as 2012.”

· Links

 

Inside Podcasters' Explosive Audience Growth

“Each time a player taps on one of these fleeting in-game ads—and wins some virtual loot for doing so—a podcast episode begins downloading on their device. The podcast company, in turn, can claim the gamer as a new listener to its program and add another coveted download to its overall tally.”

· Links

 

Artist receives first known US copyright registration for latent diffusion AI art

“In what might be a first, a New York-based artist named Kris Kashtanova has received US copyright registration on their graphic novel that features AI-generated artwork created by latent diffusion AI.”

· Links

 

Climate change is turning the trees into gluttons

“Although other factors like climate and pests can somewhat affect a tree’s volume, the study found that elevated carbon levels consistently led to an increase of wood volume in 10 different temperate forest groups across the country. This suggests that trees are helping to shield Earth’s ecosystem from the impacts of global warming through their rapid growth.”

· Links

 

Meridian

Meridian finds places based on a user’s latitude and longitude - and is open source and distributed. Useful for all kinds of purposes, not least indieweb checkin apps.

· Links

 

Gender Queer: A Memoir, by Maia Kobabe

A heartfelt memoir that I wish more kids had access to. Its place to the top of banned book lists is a travesty. I was surprised how emotional I found it; the last few pages brought me to tears unexpectedly. I find this kind of raw honesty to be very inspiring.

· Links

 

Maggie Haberman: A Reckoning With Donald Trump

“I was curious when Trump said he had kept in touch with other world leaders since leaving office. I asked whether that included Russia’s Vladimir Putin and China’s Xi Jinping, and he said no. But when I mentioned North Korea’s Kim Jong-un, he responded, “Well, I don’t want to say exactly, but …” before trailing off. I learned after the interview that he had been telling people at Mar-a-Lago that he was still in contact with North Korea’s supreme leader, whose picture with Trump hung on the wall of his new office at his club.”

· Links

 

Banned in the USA: The Growing Movement to Censor Books in Schools

“Some groups appear to feed off work to promote diverse books, contorting those efforts to further their own censorious ends. They have inverted the purpose of lists compiled for teachers and librarians interested in introducing a more diverse set of reading materials into the classroom or library.” Despicable.

· Links

 

How ‘Star Trek: The Motion Picture’ Finally, After 43 Years, Got Completed

“The problem with the theatrical cut was, simply, it wasn’t done. It feels long and slow because the movie hadn’t been edited properly. Scenes that may only last two or three seconds too long, or literally one frame, add up over the course of a movie to make it feel long. Now, after 1500 or so edits, Star Trek: The Motion Picture is a film that finally feels properly paced, looks stunning, and, after long last, no longer keeps the viewer at arm’s length.”

· Links

 

Human Capital

“TED was for bearing hearts, not souls.” A fun short story from the world of Reap3r.

· Links

 

Pound plummets as UK government announces biggest tax cuts in 50 years

I'm very sorry to see what's happening to the country I grew up in. Sabotage after sabotage after sabotage.

· Links

 

Have I Been Trained?

I plugged my own face into the site, and sure enough, I’m part of the training set. It also showed me pictures of my friends. Feels weird. See if you can generate something involving me?

· Links

 

Facebook Report: Censorship Violated Palestinian Rights

“Meta deleted Arabic content relating to the violence at a far greater rate than Hebrew-language posts, confirming long-running complaints of disparate speech enforcement in the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. The disparity, the report found, was perpetuated among posts reviewed both by human employees and automated software.”

· Links

 

Capitalism and extreme poverty: A global analysis of real wages, human height, and mortality since the long 16th century

“The rise of capitalism from the long 16th century onward is associated with a decline in wages to below subsistence, a deterioration in human stature, and an upturn in premature mortality. […] Where progress has occurred, significant improvements in human welfare began only around the 20th century. These gains coincide with the rise of anti-colonial and socialist political movements.”

· Links

 

California's dead will have a new burial option: Human composting

“This new law will provide California’s 39 million residents with a meaningful funeral option that offers significant savings in carbon emissions, water and land usage over conventional burial or cremation.”

· Links

 

US Military Bought Mass Monitoring Tool That Includes Internet Browsing, Email Data

“Multiple branches of the U.S. military have bought access to a powerful internet monitoring tool that claims to cover over 90 percent of the world’s internet traffic.”

· Links

 

Most Republicans Support Declaring the United States a Christian Nation

“Fully 61 percent of Republicans supported declaring the United States a Christian nation. In other words, even though over half of Republicans previously said such a move would be unconstitutional, a majority of GOP voters would still support this declaration.”

· Links

 

Food Means Home

A recipe book collated by 30 unaccompanied minor asylum seekers. Just completely lovely.

· Links

 

Pentagon reviews psychological operations amid Facebook, Twitter complaints

“The Pentagon has ordered a sweeping audit of how it conducts clandestine information warfare after major social media companies identified and took offline fake accounts suspected of being run by the U.S. military in violation of the platforms’ rules.”

· Links

 

More US Employers Are Trapping Workers in a New Form of Indentured Servitude

“Bosses in industries such as retail, health care and logistics are reverting to an old tactic and trapping people in miserable jobs by threatening to saddle them with debt if they quit. Workers across the United States in fields ranging from nursing to trucking have been discouraged from leaving jobs they hate or can’t afford to keep because employers vow to charge them for training costs if they quit before an arbitrary deadline.”

· Links

 

The Internet We Could Have Had

“The internet we do have, however, is figured much differently. It is figured as a tool of political domination. It is the apotheosis of the forms of domination secretly hidden inside the stories of progress and liberation. It is capitalism, colonialism, imperialism, slavery, and environmental destruction all rolled into one hideous hydra whose heads are Zuckerberg, Bezos, Pichai, Cook, with Musk and Thiel at the ass end.”

· Links

 

The smoking gun in Martha's Vineyard

“Migrants from Venezuela were provided with false information to convince them to board flights chartered by Florida Governor Ron DeSantis (R). The documents suggest that the flights were not just a callous political stunt but potentially a crime.”

· Links

 

Gender differences and bias in open source: pull request acceptance of women versus men

“Surprisingly, our results show that women’s contributions tend to be accepted more often than men’s. However, for contributors who are outsiders to a project and their gender is identifiable, men’s acceptance rates are higher. Our results suggest that although women on GitHub may be more competent overall, bias against them exists nonetheless.”

· Links

 

How a news investigation shed light on potential patient privacy violations

“The health system said the tracking tool was intended to help track the success of a promotional campaign to connect more patients to its MyChart patient portal, which involved Facebook advertisements. But it was configured improperly, which allowed Meta to obtain patient information such as email addresses, phone numbers, computer IP addresses, contact information and appointment details.”

· Links

 

WordPress+IndieWeb as the OS of the Open Social Web

Nice indieweb thoughts and presentation. As an aside, I’ve added Hypothesis annotations to my site, inspired by Ton’s site.

· Links

Discover more IndieWeb sites
Discover more blogs on Blogroll