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On The Media

Facebook Apologizes to LGBT Community and Promises Better Authentication Tools

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Chris Cox — Facebook’s Chief Product Officer — apologized for account suspensions following weeks of protest over the social media company's name policy.
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On The Media

Facebook Attempts to Teach Its Users To Recognize Satire - With A "Satire" Tag

Monday, August 18, 2014

The old "The-Onion-being-mistaken-as-real-news" rubric is now so common at this point as to be mundane. In fact, the website "literally unbelievable" exists solely catalog unsuspecting Facebookers falling for The Onion's headlines. And The Onion is no longer the only site that traffics in parody that gets passed off as real news, it's just the best known, and most clearly satirical. Sites like The Daily Currant and The National Report - both less clearly satire and significantly less funny than The Onion - regularly get picked up as real news as well. Facebook is running a test on some users where it attempts to more clearly demarcate articles from The Onion as satire

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PRI's The World

Facebook offers the best advertising for migrant-smuggling coyotes

Monday, August 11, 2014

People who smuggle migrants across the US-Mexico border, known as coyotes or polleros, are logging on to Facebook to find more clients. Satisfied customers will post reviews of their coyotes on social media, and connect their relatives to helpful smuggling contacts online.

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On The Media

Scholars Ask For Facebook's "Emotional Contagion" Study to Be Withdrawn

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Last month, Facebook announced that it had conducted an experiment in which it purposely showed a group of users only negative posts from their friends' news feeds. The premise was to test what the academics behind the research of "emotional contagion," the notion that moods can spread across networks. Well, everyone was annoyed at being manipulated, and the lead researcher in the study has apologized. The Electronic Privacy Information Center has asked for an investigation from the FTC, saying Facebook was duplicitous, manipulative, and failed to inform users of the experiment. Now, Maryland Law Professor (and friend of TLDR) James Grimmelmann, along with colleague Leslie Meltzer Henry and the faculty of the Berman Institute of Bioethics at Johns Hopkins University have asked the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences to retract the Facebook study.

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Listen to Lucy

Sheryl Sandberg adds to the glut of non-apologies

Tuesday, July 08, 2014

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Slate Political Gabfest

The Political Gabfest: The You're a Facebook Lab Rat Edition

Friday, July 04, 2014

Slate's Political Gabfest, featuring Emily Bazelon, David Plotz, and John Dickerson. This week: The High Court's Hobby Lobby decision, the impasse over immigration reform, and Facebook's ethically ambiguous research.

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The Brian Lehrer Show

Was Facebook's Mood Study Too Creepy?

Tuesday, July 01, 2014

The social media network manipulating your newsfeed is nothing new, but users were outraged when Facebook admitted to studying users' emotions. Was it legal?

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On The Media

Don't Let Facebook's Emotional Manipulation Study Make You So Mad

Monday, June 30, 2014

Last week, Facebook announced it had conducted an experiment on some of its users without their knowledge or permission. 

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The Takeaway

SCOTUS Considers Free Speech & the Internet

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

This week, the Supreme Court has agreed to consider the case Elonis v. United States in its next term, starting October 2014. The case examines the intersection between free speech and criminal behavior on the internet.

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On The Media

Facebook Tries Peer Pressure to Shame Users Into Voting

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Did you know there was an "I'm a voter" button on Facebook for the 2012 election? Neither did I. But apparently the button is meant as subtle social pressure on your facebook community to get out and vote. Today, Facebook announced that it will be expanding the "I'm a Voter" button to international elections.

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On The Media

A Study Suggests Online Activism Doesn’t Work, But The Truth is Probably More Complicated

Friday, April 18, 2014

A recent study seems to confirm what most of us already suspect - that Facebook activism isn’t likely, on its own, to lead to real world consequences. Researchers looked at the “Save Darfur” Facebook group and found that despite having 1.2 million members, the group only raised $100,000. That works out to a donation rate of 0.24 percent.

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On The Media

If You Livetweet Your Favorite Shows, You're An Outlier

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Television pushes social media really hard in its advertising these days. You'll see ads and even TV shows with hashtags in the corner, and anyone who watches AMC shows knows about their whole "second screen experience" deal which keeps you tethered to your computer while you watch The Walking Dead or Mad Men. But Nielsen has found that most viewers aren't all that engaged with social media while they watch TV. 

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On The Media

Facebook's Weak Measures Against Selling Guns on Facebook

Wednesday, March 05, 2014

PJ wrote an article a couple weeks ago about attempts to curb gun sales on Facebook. He was skeptical that such a ban would work. This week, after a lot of vocal protest and a petition that got 230,000 signatures, Facebook announced new measures to prevent Facebook gun sales. Judging by these new measures, it looks like PJ's skepticism was justified.

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On The Media

Facebook Will Now Let You Block All Articles from Any Website

Tuesday, March 04, 2014

If you’ve got a friend who posts every single Upworthy article, you can put a stop to the deluge without unfriending.

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On The Media

WhatsApp And the Hasidic Community

Thursday, February 20, 2014

Since it is used expressly for peer-to-peer communication, it doesn't require users to browse the internet, thus potentially exposing them to material they might not want to see.

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On The Media

What's Powering Facebook’s Reality Distortion Field?

Wednesday, February 12, 2014

There’s a culture of journalists who are Facebook truthers - they’ll believe anything about the company “as long as it’s totally outlandish.”

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WNYC News

When it Comes to Big Giving, New York Trails California

Monday, February 10, 2014

A new list of the country's top philanthropists highlighted 12 New York donors who gave away nearly $1.6 billion last year. That places the state second to California, where 15 philanthropists gave a combined $2.8 billion.

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The Takeaway

Is Facebook the Best Place to Archive our Memories?

Friday, February 07, 2014

Since Facebook celebrated its tenth anniversary earlier this week, hundreds of millions of users have created their own "look-back" movies, a one-minute-long reflection on a user's most-liked posts and pictures since the site began. Researcher Sherry Turkle, professor of Science Technology and Society at MIT, explores Facebook's affect on how we perceive identity and memory.

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