Category Archives: Did you Know?

The spreading of misinformation online






The wide availability of user-provided content in online social media facilitates the aggregation of people around common interests, worldviews, and narratives. However, the World Wide Web (WWW) also allows for the rapid dissemination of unsubstantiated rumors and conspiracy theories that often elicit rapid, large, but naive social responses.

PDF here:

via Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America


YouTube Backs Its Users With New Fair Use Protection Program 

YouTube announced a new program to help users fight back against outrageous copyright threats. The company has created a ‘Fair Use Protection’ program that will cover legal costs of users who, in the company’s view, have been unfairly targeted for takedown.

Source: YouTube Backs Its Users With New Fair Use Protection Program | Electronic Frontier Foundation

No More Pencils, No More Books.

The students in Whelan’s class are all using the same program, called ALEKS. But peek over their shoulders and you’ll see that each student is working on a different sort of problem. A young woman near the corner of the room is plugging her way through a basic linear equation. The young man to her left is trying to wrap his mind around a story problem involving fractions. Nearby, a more advanced student is simplifying equations that involve both variables and fractions.

At first glance, each student appears to be at a different point in the course. And that’s true, in one sense. But it’s more accurate to say that the course is literally different for each student.

Source: The Textbook Is Dying. Meet the Artificially Intelligent Software That’s Replacing It. 

Open Access Is a Human Rights Issue (Open Access Week, One Week Late)

Let’s not portray casual sharing as more heroic than it is, though. A network of friends with institutional connections is not a luxury that everyone has. Emailing papers doesn’t fix a system in which the most cutting-edge knowledge is only available to a few people. If anything, casual sharing of limited-access papers only underscores the problem: limiting access to research keeps knowledge away from people without the same connections and privileges.

Source: Open Access Is a Human Rights Issue | Electronic Frontier Foundation

How Trade Agreements Harm Open Access and Open Source (Open Access Week, One Week Late)

Open access isn’t explicitly covered in any of the secretive trade negotiations that are currently underway, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), the Trans-Atlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), and the Trade In Services Agreement (TISA). But that doesn’t mean that they won’t have a negative impact on those seeking to publish or use open access materials.

Source: How Trade Agreements Harm Open Access and Open Source | Electronic Frontier Foundation