Manipulated photos and videos flood our fragmented, polluted, and increasingly automated information ecosystem, from a synthetically generated “deepfake,” to the far more common problem of older images resurfacing and being shared with a different context.
After a black bird-watcher filmed a white dog-walker on May 25 calling the police on him in response to his request she obey the dog-leash laws in the Ramble woodlands area of Central Park, New York, the video went viral. “I’m going to tell them there’s an African American man threatening my life”, Amy Cooper informed Christian Cooper (no relation) before she called 911 and made a deliberately dramatic false accusation. Melody Cooper, discussing her decision to post her brother’s footage online, told hosts of American talk show The View that she “wanted to shine a light on” Amy Cooper’s…
The news: IBM has said the company will stop developing or selling facial recognition software due to concerns the technology is used to promote racism. In a letter to Congress, IBM’s CEO Arvind Krishna said the tech giant opposes any technology used “for mass surveillance, racial profiling, violations of basic human rights and freedoms.”
A group of publishers is suing the Internet Archive over its trove of free ebooks. The lawsuit, filed on behalf of Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins Publishers, John Wiley & Sons, and Penguin Random House, claims the Internet Archive is practically committing theft by putting over 1.3 million titles up for free for anyone to download, The New York Times reports.
Podcasting platform Stitcher said number podcasts have grown by 129,000% (that’s not a typo) in the last decade. In its annual podcasting report, the company said creators published 7 million episodes on the platform in 2019, as compared to 350,000 episodes published in 2010. Stitcher said that while people are publishing more podcasts, the average episode length is now 2.4 minutes shorter, as compared to an average episode in 2013. The report has some interesting tidbits about genres (true crime being the #1), formats, listening habits, and age group of listeners. I wish the study covered the topic of podfasters — p