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News Feed FYI: Click-baiting

It’s hard for me to think of Facebook as the “good guy” in any situation, but I am pleased to learn that FB is adjusting its algorithm to penalize click-bait headlines. A small set of publishers who are frequently posting links with click-bait headlines that many people don’t spend time reading after they click through may see their distribution decrease in the next few months. We’re making these changes to…

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Incoming Seton Hill Students Pick Up Their MacBooks and iPads Today

I find it impossible not to be cheerful amidst all the energy on campus as new students register and move in. Our tech staff is busy distributing magical devices that can create and distribute knowledge, or destroy contemplation and attention. Are we wise enough to serve those students well? Let’s hope we are!

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BREAKING: British Burn Washington … 2 Centuries Ago

Two hundred years ago this week, during the War of 1812, invading British troops destroyed two of the nation’s most important buildings — the White House and the Capitol. The war had started over issues of tariffs and the taking of American sailors on the high seas; by the summer of 1814, British fighters were in middle of a campaign burning and looting along the coast. –BREAKING: British Burn Washington…

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How Facebook and Twitter control what you see about Ferguson

On Twitter, I see tear-gassed civilians, heavily armed cops, and reporters being arrested. On Facebook, I see people dumping buckets on their heads. The Washington Post offers a good overview of a complex, and important, issue. “The study found that, because Facebook friend networks are often composed of ‘weak ties’ where the threshold for friending someone is low, users were often negatively surprised to see their acquaintances express political opinions…

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Should your grieving mum see your digital secrets?

A US state has passed a law that will give the family of a deceased person access to their Twitter, Facebook and email accounts just as if they were physical assets. Delaware’s “Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets and Digital Accounts Act” grants heirs and the executor of the will the same powers over digital accounts or devices as over physical assets like a house or cash. The law grants access…

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The News from Ferguson – Live, on Twitter

[I]t turns out that Twitter is not just a place where scholars take notes publicly at conferences, it’s a medium that does a better job than most of including the voices of African Americans, and that matters. To a large extent what has been happening in Ferguson is the result of white folks’ near-total deafness when it comes to the lived experience of being black in America. It’s where news…