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A Robotic Dog’s Mortality

Fascinating video journalism from the New York Times. They didn’t shed, chew the sofa or bite the postman, but for thousands of people Sony’s Aibo robotic dog was the closest thing to a real canine companion. So when the Japanese company stopped servicing the robots last year, eight years after it ended production, owners faced a wrenching prospect: that their aging “pets” would break down for good. —The New York Times

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Clickbait Tactics Drive the Writing of Headlines on ABC News

I probably should not be surprised, but when I saw this run of several headlines on the ABC News website, I was struck by how deliberately uninformative they are. I added some useful information that could have been in the headline. A print journalist writes a headline for someone who’s already holding the newspaper, so giving away the actual news in the headline won’t lose a sale. But a link…

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Actually, this post really *is* about ethics in journalism.

People – journalists and non-journalists – who want to interact with others about the topic of journalism ethics should be transparent, courteous and civilized. One person should never harass, threaten or demean another.Also, people in the U.S. are not forced to read, view or listen to stories from news organizations. If a person believes the information from a certain organization is inaccurate, they’re free to find other sources. People can support and…

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Warning: Don’t Download Software From SourceForge If You Can Help It

Looks like SourceForge has backtracked on this particular issue, but I’m happy  to pass along the warning that SourceForge has engaged in these tactics.  GIMP is the free, open-source digital editing tool that I use (a replacement for PhotoShop). In 2013, GIMP’s developers pulled the GIMP Windows downloads from SourceForge. SourceForge was full of misleading advertisements masquerading as “Download” buttons — something that’s a problem all over the web. SourceForge…

You'll Probably Believe These 7 Not-Amazing Reasons Why Listicles Suck (#4 is as Painfully Obvious as the Rest)
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That “Top 5” countdown listicle stuffs 5 pages of runners-up between #2 and #1.

Relaxing in bed on the first Sunday morning of my summer break, I web-surfed across the name of something I was interested in, on a “Top 5” list. I host some “Top #X Whatevers” pages on my website, but I put all the items (writing tips of some sort) on one page, and include a table of contents that you can use to jump directly to the item you want…

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Technology won’t fix America’s neediest schools. It makes bad education worse.

[N]o matter how good the design, and despite rigorous tests of impact, I have never seen technology systematically overcome the socio-economic divides that exist in education. Children who are behind need high-quality adult guidance more than anything else. Many people believe that technology “levels the playing field” of learning, but what I’ve discovered is that it does no such thing. —The Washington Post

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Time article with clickbaity headline: Web users annoyed by marketing tricks

This Time magazine article is a good one, but that “what you think you know is wrong” headline is more of the same obnoxious clickbait that the article itself critiques, so here’s a bit of what I found useful. Scrolling is more acceptable behavior than it used to be. We’re all much more used to scrolling now, especially when using mobile devices. Just because we click a link doesn’t mean…