Bits'n'Pieces 9.6.2016: Kaputte Drogenpolitik, die Tiefen des Digital Age, App-Boom is over und Facebook verliert den Krieg gegen Fake-News


Drogenpolitik? Eine Katastrophe!: „Veraltet, realitätsfern, ohne wissenschaftliche Grundlage: Suchtforscher und Strafrechtler erheben schwere Vorwürfe. Deutschlands Drogenpolitik versage auf ganzer Linie.“

Geschichtsunterricht als Pflicht gegen rechte Gewalt [ab der zehnten Klasse. Ich gehe davon aus, dass das Fach vorher bereits Pflichtfach ist.]: „Im Kampf gegen Rechtsextremismus macht Sachsen Geschichte wieder zum Pflichtfach. Die Schüler müssten Totalitarismus verstehen lernen, sagt Regierungschef Tillich.“

Shell gibt Bohrrechte in der Arktis auf: „Der Ölkonzern Shell hat seine Erkundungs-Lizenzen in der kanadischen Arktis an eine Umweltorganisation abgegeben. Der Schritt hat auch wirtschaftliche Gründe. Denn durch die niedrigen Ölpreise lohnt sich die Erkundung neuer Vorkommen nur noch bedingt.“

🕴 VW-Abgasaffäre: Jurist wollte offenbar Daten verschwinden lassen: „Kurz vor Bekanntwerden des VW-Abgasskandals hat eine Führungskraft offenbar versucht, Daten beiseite schaffen zu lassen. Einem Medienbericht zufolge wird wegen versuchter Strafvereitelung ermittelt.“

lol Marokko verbietet Zeitunglesen in der Öffentlichkeit: „Das gebührenfreie Lesen periodischer Printmedien soll in Marokko illegal werden. Damit wird ein Wunsch der Verleger erfüllt.“

The Mind of Donald Trump „It was as if the golden-haired guest sitting across the table were an actor playing a part on the London stage. 'It was Donald Trump playing Donald Trump,' Griffin observed. There was something unreal about it.“


🍞🖕 The New Front for the Culture Wars Is Facebook Meme Pages: „Here is a remarkably stupid statement that is also true: A Facebook page created to distribute memes about garlic bread is now embroiled in controversy after posting a meme (about garlic bread) that some readers considered transphobic.“
Inside the civil war at Garlic Bread Memes, the Facebook page in turmoil over an allegedly transphobic meme

😲🔫 Chewbacca Mom has made over $400k and now charges for autographs: „According to TMZ, the viral star, whose real name is Candace Payne, charged $20 for autographs and photos at Dallas' Fan Expo on Sunday. Her booth was next to Game of Thrones star Jack Gleeson's.“

Not at all convinced by their methodology, but here you go: Algorithm knows when corporate money is pushing memes online.

It’s like a doping test for memes. An algorithm can detect when a Twitter hashtag or meme has received more attention than expected. This can show it got an artificial boost from corporate advertising dollars, says Emilio Ferrara of the University of Southern California, who led the team.

Twitter normally labels tweets that have been paid for or sponsored. But hashtags can be promoted by other means, such as via websites or TV, Ferrara says. “If we can learn the characteristics of promoted campaigns, then maybe we can detect and even predict them,” he says.

The team trained their algorithm by having it learn how a promoted meme labelled as such by Twitter looks and circulates. Once trained, it also found unlabelled promotional campaigns, like #GameofThrones or #AmericanIdol, which had been advertised elsewhere. Overall, the algorithm tested 95 per cent accurate, missing just one in every 20 of the memes that Twitter explicitly promotes. Ferrara and his colleagues presented their results at the Tenth International AAAI Conference on Web and Social Media.

German publishers are pooling data to compete with Google and Facebook: „Axel Springer, Gruner + Jahr, RTL owner Bertelsmann Group, and Der Speigel [sic!] owner are among eight of the 10 biggest publishing groups in Germany to be pooling masses of reader data, from just under 1,000 websites including tabloid Bild, and other major titles.
The raw data goes into a single platform called Emetriq, a subsidiary owned by Deutsche Telekom, which sifts through and cleans it up, to create highly targeted, quality audience segments that publishers can use to boost their advertising packages.“

Is Facebook losing its war on fake news?: „Despite vowing to give articles from hoax sites less prominence in its newsfeed, Facebook seems to be making little headway in the battle for truth“.

⚡️💡‼️ Dieser Text und die dazugehörenden Buchtipps, must Read: In the Depths of the Digital Age.

The crowd has always been the field in which isolation dissolves, even among strangers, and the individual will merges into collective impersonal force. The protective distance that human beings maintain between themselves and others—their personal space—typically varies among cultures and personalities, but disappears entirely in a crowd where everyone is pressed together in one undifferentiated mass. The oldest form of the crowd, Elias Canetti wrote in Crowds and Power (1960), is the “baiting crowd” that forms in order to kill someone, a crowd that today pleases itself by taking selfies while cheering a political candidate’s murderous fantasies.

Wendy Hui Kyong Chun’s Updating to Remain the Same, using a different vocabulary from Canetti’s, describes the ways in which the habit of making and seeking “updates” of our own and other people’s status creates a similar crowd: “Through…habits, individual actions coalesce bodies into monstrously connected chimeras.” The Internet, in Chun’s account, is a world always in crisis, in panic at the latest e-mail viruses, pursuing, for example, an elusive Ugandan warlord merely by viewing an immensely popular YouTube video about him. Crises create change; but the habit of constant updating of one’s Facebook status, always reusing a familiar conventional syntax, paradoxically leaves everything the same. “To be is to be updated”: one must update in order to give “evidence of one’s ongoing existence.” Hence Chun’s subtitle: “Habitual New Media.” The Internet, in its vastness, induces a sense of personal powerlessness that can be relieved by joining a crowd—until the crowd reshapes itself, as it always does, and must be joined again. As the Red Queen told Alice, “It takes all the running you can do, to keep in the same place.”


Inside the topsy-turvy world of Useless, Unsuccessful, and/or Unpopular Memes: „The Facebook group Drewes helps moderate, Useless, Unsuccessful, and/or Unpopular Memes, is the most interesting thing happening in meme culture right now, and it’s not on 4chan, Reddit, or Tumblr. It’s not even clear whether the things UUUM makes are “memes” at all.
Yeah, they have all the formal properties: they’re images, usually with words. But where are the rage faces? Where’s Pepe the Frog? Where are the SpongeBob SquarePants characters? You won’t find them here. Instead, you’re drowning in weird musical wordplay and cerebral pop culture references, hacked together with inconsistent Photoshop. You won’t see the same familiar characters and themes repeating—in fact, you’ll probably never see the same image twice. It’s against the rules.
Founded in 2014 by a group of friends out of a Louisiana college town, UUUM isn’t so much a parody of meme culture as a roast, a critical response. But it’s also fun—a hell of a lot more fun than the dozenth Mr. Krabs reaction meme you’ve seen on Twitter today.“

Tech & Science

🚗🚀💥 lol Welcome to Larry Page’s Secret Flying-Car Factories. it's Flying Car-Time again. Pls note that Larry Pages „secret“ Flying-Car-Company Zee.Aero kinda rhymes with zero. As in „Zero chances this will lead anywhere.“

China plans massive sea lab 10,000 feet underwater

China is speeding up efforts to design and build a manned deep-sea platform to help it hunt for minerals in the South China Sea, one that may also serve a military purpose in the disputed waters.

Such an oceanic “space station” would be located as much as 3,000 meters (9,800 feet) below the surface, according to a recent Science Ministry presentation viewed by Bloomberg. The project was mentioned in China’s current five-year economic plan released in March and ranked number two on a list of the top 100 science and technology priorities.

The app boom is over: „Your phone is full of apps, and you're done downloading new ones — unless they're Snapchat or Uber. […] Globally, the mobile phone market is still growing, so the app market is as well. But not by much.“

Mystery human hobbits ruled tiny Asian island 700,000 years ago


"Wir brauchen eine eigenständige Comicförderung": „'Comic ist Kunst' - unter dem Titel beschäftigt sich das Berliner Abgeordnetenhaus am Montag mit der Comic-Kultur in Berlin. Gast der Anhörung ist der Vorsitzende des Comicvereins - wir haben ihn dazu befragt.“

Choose Life, choose Tweed

The Life and Death of a Modern-Day Bonnie and Clyde: „How a young couple's two-week crime spree took a violent turn, gained a cult following and ended in a hail of bullets“.

🍔🍟❤️ McDonald's: you can sneer, but it's the glue that holds communities together: „When many lower-income Americans feel isolated and empty, they yearn for physical social networks. All across US, this happens organically at McDonald’s.“


Outdoor-Prince would like to have a word regarding purple Backpacks.