Don’t shame people who don’t wear masks. It won’t work.

Don’t shame people who don’t wear masks. It won't work.
Don’t shame people who don’t wear masks. It won’t work.

Before the coronavirus pandemic, Americans were already an angry lot.

The past four years unleashed a nightmare in the United States: a tyrant president determined to set the country’s clock back to a time when inequality was common and accepted, and willing to do just about anything to realize his vision. Those who oppose President Trump’s agenda began marching in the streets while he effectively decried such opposition as un-American. Meanwhile, his devout supporters sometimes rally in public with guns at their sides.

Now, the anger has reached a newly horrific pitch. Trapped by a virus that could kill hundreds of thousands of people if left unchecked, people are sad and desperate. They want life to return to normal. They want to scream at those who make normalcy impossible by foregoing common sense or ignoring the rules. The people who

Read More

Is ‘cancel culture’ really a threat to free speech?

“The 360” shows you diverse perspectives on the day’s top stories and debates.

What’s happening

The phrase “Twitter, do your thing” can set off a potentially powerful series of events in what has become a repeated online phenomenon: A person or brand does something considered offensive or problematic, a social media user posts about it and the incident snowballs across the internet, allowing countless people to put pressure on a person or organization until that entity is “canceled.”

The idea of “cancel culture” — first coined by Black Twitter users — dates back to 2015 and began as a means of calling out friends or acquaintances. Since then it has evolved to targeting the powerful, sometimes with highly effective results (for example, the #MeToo movement and #OscarsSoWhite campaign). Public shaming is in no way new, but the internet has made the process of “canceling” even more potent and widespread.

More

Read More

As the Virus Deepens Financial Trouble, Colleges Turn to Layoffs

Dorms on East Green at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, June 21, 2020. (Maddie McGarvey/The New York Times)
Dorms on East Green at Ohio University in Athens, Ohio, June 21, 2020. (Maddie McGarvey/The New York Times)

LAKEWOOD, Ohio — Hammered by mounting coronavirus costs and anticipating lost revenue from international students, fall sports and state budgets gutted by the pandemic, colleges and universities nationwide have begun eyeing what until now has been seen as a last resort — thinning the ranks of their faculty.

The University of Akron this week became one of the first schools in the country to make deep cuts in the number of full-time professors on its staff, with the board of trustees voting Wednesday to lay off about a fifth of the university’s unionized workforce to balance its budget, including nearly 100 faculty members.

Other universities have also trimmed teaching positions, although most have limited themselves to those without tenure. This month, the University of Texas at San Antonio laid off 69 instructors,

Read More

How YouTube’s bias algorithm hurts those looking for information on health

YouTube hosts millions of videos related to health care.

The Health Information National Trends Survey reports that 75% of Americans go to the internet first when looking for information about health or medical topics. YouTube is one of the most popular online platforms, with billions of views every day, and has emerged as a significant source of health information.

Several public health agencies, such as state health departments, have invested resources in YouTube as a channel for health communication. Patients with chronic health conditions especially rely on social media, including YouTube videos, to learn more about how to manage their conditions.

But video recommendations on such sites could exacerbate preexisting disparities in health.

A significant fraction of the U.S. population is estimated to have limited health literacy, or the capacity to obtain, process and understand basic health information, such as the ability to read and comprehend prescription bottles, appointment slips

Read More

This Bat Is Not the Size of a Human (But It Is Very Big)

Photo credit: Reddit / Sakundes
Photo credit: Reddit / Sakundes

From Prevention

  • A viral photo of what appears to be a massive bat has been making the rounds online. The photo, in which a flying fox—a type of bat—is seen perched upside down, is a bit misleading, though.

  • While flying foxes are the largest bats in the world, they don’t get as big as the one in the picture appears to be.

  • The camera trick known as “forced perspective” is what makes this bat seem so huge.

The Earth has long been home to startlingly massive megafauna. Just look at the monster penguins that roamed what was once New Zealand or the humongous sloths that ambled around South America. In more modern times, these big beasts are scarce, but they’re still around—and the latest one to grab the internet’s attention is known as the flying fox.

Despite their common name, flying foxes are actually bats

Read More

Iran halts execution of 3 convicted over November protests

Tehran (AFP) – Iran has halted the executions of three young men linked to deadly November protests, sentences which had sparked widespread outrage, one of the accused’s lawyers told AFP on Sunday.

Last week a court had upheld their death sentences over evidence the judiciary said was found on their phones of them setting alight banks, buses and public buildings during the wave of anti-government demonstrations.

“We conveyed a request to review the verdict to the supreme court and they have accepted it,” the lawyer, Babak Paknia, said over the phone.

“We hope the verdict will be overturned.”

The lawyer identified the three as friends Amirhossein Moradi, a 26-year-old retail worker, Said Tamjidi, a 28-year-old driver for Snapp (Iran’s Uber), and Mohammad Rajabi, also 26 and unemployed.

They were sentenced to death for “collusion to endanger national security” and “destroying and setting fire to public property with the aim of

Read More

Trump’s campaign to paint Biden as mentally unfit becomes a gamble

WASHINGTON – Less than four months from the November election, President Donald Trump’s attacks on presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s mental fitness are an integral part of the president’s re-election message: the focus of television advertisements, talking points and open challenges from the president.

But analysts have raised questions over whether Trump’s strategy of focusing on the former vice president’s age is backfiring with a key demographic – seniors.

Making it an even riskier play, the attacks have heightened expectations for Trump’s debate performances this fall and invited skepticism about his own fitness. The strategy itself has proven difficult to execute as Biden campaigns from his home in Delaware, limiting the gaffe-prone candidate’s opportunities for flubs.

For months, Biden, 77, has dismissed the name calling and innuendo but more recently he’s hitting back more forcefully and trying to turn the argument about mental fitness back on the 74-year-old Trump.

“This

Read More

Which Online Bank Is Right for You?

Some of the links in this post are from our sponsors. We provide you with accurate, reliable information. Learn more about how we make money and select our advertising partners.

Online-only banks are attractive to anyone looking for a simple and convenient banking solution.

While most traditional branch banks offer online banking and mobile apps, digital banking platforms tend to blow them out of the water in user experience and convenience — because they’re created by technology companies.

These companies let you access the products and services you’re used to from traditional banks, but they layer on features through robust apps to help you simplify your life and work toward financial goals.

As the landscape for online banks becomes increasingly competitive, digital banking apps look more and more similar — but each stands out through unique features designed for specific lifestyles and financial goals.

Two leading players in the online

Read More

How ‘Knives Out’ and a fan page for Ana de Armas harness the power of stan Twitter

Ana de Armas as Marta Cabrera in "Knives Out." <span class="copyright">(Lionsgate)</span>
Ana de Armas as Marta Cabrera in “Knives Out.” (Lionsgate)

The “Knives Out” social media team and the Twitter account @ArmasUpdates have a common goal: to celebrate last year’s hit whodunit and, by extension, the movie’s breakout star, Ana de Armas.

But two of the actress’s biggest Twitter cheerleaders found themselves at odds this month after the 23-year-old cinephile behind @ArmasUpdates publicly exposed the @KnivesOut account for blocking him on the platform. The resulting feud went somewhat viral — albeit among a niche audience — even catching the attention of director Rian Johnson who, like many others, wondered what was afoot.

When examined with a detective’s magnifying glass, the clash is a case study of the intersection of film marketing and stan Twitter — a subset of social media devoted to championing, or “stanning,” a certain celebrity, film, TV series, etc. In their approaches to audience engagement, movie studios and

Read More

Adding a 3-D Printer to the Garage Might Finally Make Sense

From Car and Driver

The gentleman who sold me my first car, a 1969 Datsun 2000, asked me to cup my hands as he poured out a jumble of letters. I dropped them onto the faded yellow hood of the roadster and arranged them: D-A-T-S-U-N. They likely cost pennies to produce, but they were priceless to me, even the T with missing a nib that would make attaching it to the car difficult. If I lost any of these letters in 1989, that was it. I had no way to replace them. I couldn’t scour online auctions, because those didn’t exist. While there were far more Datsuns on the road in the ’80s than there are now, it was unlikely anyone else near me would part with their precious portions of the alphabet. And don’t even get me started on the anxiety I had about losing the “Datsun” and “2000”

Read More