Facebook Spot-tests New Local News Feed

I have no reason to trust Facebook to filter my news for me. However, so many people get their news by social media, maybe this will be an easy way for people to check whether a viral meme is a hoax. Maybe an option marked “Look up vetted news reports related to this post.” Yes, advertising the way the process will work is a big improvement over their previous cloaked-in-secrecy…

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Mentoring skills, communication/listening, empathy, critical thinking define successful employees in Google self-study. (STEM knowlege? Not as important.)

A Google self-study found that its own most successful employees had soft skills, such as mentoring ability, empathy, and critical thinking and problem-solving. “Those traits sound more like what one gains as an English or theater major than as a programmer,” according to the Washington Post. [A]mong the eight most important qualities of Google’s top employees, STEM expertise comes in dead last. The seven top characteristics of success at Google…

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Replacing Disputed Flags with Related Articles

Instead of flagging links to questionable news items, Facebook will instead hide them. Which is nice, but it still means we have to trust the algorithm Facebook uses. (Don’t trust Facebook to filter your news for you.) False news undermines the unique value that Facebook offers: the ability for you to connect with family and friends in meaningful ways. It’s why we’re investing in better technology and more people to…

PR Pop Quiz: Intro to Crisis Management

Pop quiz for public relations 101. Scenario 1: You run a wildly popular app that incorporates video with a live host. You learn that a reporter is writing a personality profile of your host. Do you offer some cheerful quotes and then make a note to get your host to sign a new contract that handles such things as media requests (and maybe giving him a raise because he’s obviously a…

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Local news is the building block of a national democracy.

Yesterday, I asked my students, “How many of you spent $4 on a cup of coffee in the last month? How many have spent that much to support local news?” “If people don’t get local news, they don’t know what’s going on in their community. If they don’t know what’s going on in their community, they don’t get involved in their community. If they’re not involved in their community, and…

Did you share Russian fake news? Facebook, apparently unable to insert items directly in our feeds, will make you jump through hoops to find out.

Did you share fake news from Russia during the US Presidential election? Grudgingly following up on a Congressional order, Facebook will permit you to jump through hoops to find out. Because Facebook apparently does not have the technology to insert items of its choosing directly in user feeds, the social media company has helpfully provided a new option in its maze of settings. Whether you have unknowingly participated in the…