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Clickbait writers hate this English professor’s time-saving trick!

Defeat clickbaiters with this one weird trick! You won’t believe how punctuation can save you time. Will you regret clicking that headline phrased as a question? (You can safely avoid clicking any headline phrased as a question, promises an emotional reaction, or hedges a claim with “may” or “could be”. You won’t miss anything important if you don’t click that bait.)

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Former Facebook Workers: We Routinely Suppressed [a Certain Political Slant] News

One day when I was an undergraduate working for one of two competing student papers, two rallies were held on opposite sides of the downtown mall. One group held signs like “Keep your laws off my body,” and “Keep abortion safe and legal,” and the other group held signs like “It’s a child, not a choice” and “Abortion stops a beating heart.” The student paper I did not work for ran…


Facebook Hired Journalists to Train Its Trending Topics Algorithm

Recently I noticed an unusually incendiary phrase in the Facebook “trending” list, and noticed that several people in my feed were reacting strongly to that language. When I clicked the link, I was taken to a page that did not actually contain that phrase. When I searched for the source of that phrase, the results came up nil. A few hours later, searched turned up bloggers who were angrily…


For News Outlets Squeezed From the Middle, It’s Bend or Bust

Hundreds of thousands of people on Facebook followed BuzzFeed’s live video of two people putting rubber bands around a watermelon until it burst. We should all reflect on how journalism can make the news that is truly important interesting enough to compete with exploding fruit. Traditional media companies face the increasingly daunting task of hooking already-inundated audiences, but they also have more tools than ever to lure them. Videos, podcasts,…