SDF podcast 8: Seek out those you can trust

Question Everything

In the latest episode 8 of The Small Data Forum podcast, hosted by Thomas Stoeckle in conversation with regulars Neville Hobson and Sam Knowles, we explore whether following the ‘interesting times’ of 2016, we are seeing some sort of ‘regression to the mean’, with a right wing populist not succeeding in general elections in the Netherlands, with Emmanuel Macron becoming president of France, and with Chelsea FC winning the Premier League (following Leicester City’s surprise success last year). And such is the nature of our continuously evolving subject matter, when we have completed a podcast, we often find that on key discussion points, there is already more, and breaking news. The Facebook Files Just days after recording our latest musings […]

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How to play your part in fighting fake news

Facebook News Feed

One of the scourges of modern connected times is the rise of so-called fake news, a phenomenon that’s invasive and pervasive and a driver of distrust about what you read, see and hear online as well as fear, uncertainty and doubt about the sources that publish it. And not only such reactions upon immediate discovery, but also the unwitting spread of fake news by those who publish, talk about or share such content without knowing it’s false. It’s not new by any means – in the pre-internet days, it was called propaganda. Today, though, with the vast connectedness with others we enjoy via the global internet, it is so easy to amplify falsehoods, wittingly or unwittingly, with a quick retweet […]

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Generation Z vs Millennials: There’s quite a difference

For much of the past decade, Millennials has been the generation that was the comparative one whenever anyone talked about behavioural and other differences between generations in contemporary society. Not only in the cultural and consumer contexts but also in the workplace. It’s fair to say that marketers and brand managers now understand a great deal about that generation in terms of behaviours, expectations, preferences and other consumer indicators. Employers understand much about them in terms of workplace expectations and behaviours. Yet I wonder whether there’s a fixation on Millennials that doesn’t see how time has passed and that there’s a next generation that requires attention, far more than has been given thus far, apparently. That generation is the so-called […]

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Mastodon, the hot new social network like Twitter, kind of

A new social network started up six months ago and began picking up speed last week as it echoes the early days of Twitter. It’s called Mastodon and was born out of frustration with changes being made on Twitter, according to an interview with founder Eugen Rochko in The Verge. Last year, after Twitter began moving away from a purely chronological feed, Rochko began building the back end for what would become Mastodon. Instead of building a unified service, Rochko envisioned something more like email, or RSS: a distributed system that lets you send public messages to anyone who follows you on the service. Anyone can create a server and host their own instance of Mastodon, and Mastodon works in […]

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How Twitter Works – a legal opinion

Royal Courts of Justice

Most reasonable people are aware that if you publicly publish something defamatory about someone else that is false, you can be sued for libel. If you lose the legal case, it can be expensive for you in terms of damage to your reputation as well as a financial cost. (Related: the difference between libel and slander in UK law.) And I’d add that most reasonable people are also aware that the same rules on libel apply to all methods of public communication, including online. So, for instance, if you tweet something bad about someone that’s false, they can sue you for libel. Which is precisely what happened in the case of Jack Monroe vs Katie Hopkins, the judgement of which was published on March […]

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