Fake news creators are a lot like computer hackers.
To understand the comparison, we need to look at hackers’ motives. The problem here is that hackers — like fake news creators — have many motives.
Plus, there are many types of hackers. In a post to the blog Infosec, a site devoted to information security, Penny Hoelscher wrote that hackers’ motives “vary widely, from the terrorist hacker wanting to save the planet to the script kiddie wanting to destroy their ex-spouse.”
If you’re not familiar with the term “script kiddies,” they’re simply hacker-wannabes, “usually low-skilled, but they can be a menace to individuals they target to harass or whose lives they try to infiltrate,” Hoelscher wrote.
The motives we give hackers and the categories in which they’re placed mirror many of those of fake news producers.
Read more at https://www.vindy.com/life/lifestyles/2020/09/fake-news-creators-are-a-lot-like-hackers/ (may encounter paywall).
The 1988 U.S. presidential election was the first time I cared about politics. George H. W. Bush, the incumbent vice president, was running against Massachusetts Gov. Michael Dukakis.
But that’s not why I cared. I didn’t care if Bush or Dukakis won. I didn’t fancy myself a Democrat or Republican.
Having recently turned 18 and registered with the selective service, my thought was “Hey, I’m finally an adult. I’m going to conquer the world.”
The first step was to elect a president. Time to cast my vote. This was my first big obstacle to world domination.
It also was my first big adult fail.
OK, it wasn’t really a huge failure, but it felt like it. Little did I know how hard it would be for a newly minted grown-up to find voting information. When I asked, Mom said, “You just vote at the same place I do. We’ll get you there.”
“Of course! Mom knows,” I thought. Mom was relatively active in politics. She voted in every election. Before I was born, she marched with Dad in Washington for different issues. Mom would certainly have all the important information.
On Election Day, I arrived at our local polling place with Mom. No sooner did I walk in the door...
Read more at https://www.vindy.com/life/lifestyles/2020/09/social-media-doesnt-let-you-forget-to-vote/ (may encounter paywall).
Popular mapping apps Google Maps and Waze have a lot in common.
In many ways, they’re like sisters raised by the same parent company (Google). Like families with multiple children, where one kid might get more attention than the other at times, they’re both equally loved.
Google Maps, the popular sister, dominates the most-downloaded mapping app category for Android and iOS platforms. According to Statista, Maps recorded nearly 155 million downloads in 2019, dwarfing Waze’s 25 million (Apple Maps ranked a distant third).
With that many downloads, it’s easy to understand why Google might show Maps some preferential treatment.
Waze, however, is clearly the fun sister. While the older sister is all business, Waze gives friends and acquaintances all the bells and whistles, traffic cameras, route updates and entertaining features that Google Maps does not.
But both sisters are equally accurate at providing step-by-step directions. This is because they share a similar genetic code (i.e., programming). After all, they both benefit from Google’s all-powerful framework.
The major difference is that...
Read more at https://www.vindy.com/life/lifestyles/2020/09/google-and-waze-maps-have-a-lot-in-common/ (may encounter paywall).
This semester I’m teaching a course at YSU on Netflix and streaming services. You’re probably thinking “Whoa. What an easy class! They probably just sit around and watch movies all day.”
Some days I wish that was true. Instead, my students learn how streaming platforms work, terms we use to talk about video-on-demand (e.g., subscriptions, pay-per-views), advertising and marketing strategies, and binge-watching.
Of course, we tackle fun stuff, too, like producing and developing new shows and other streaming content.
And OK, yes, we’ll watch a few shows together as a class if for no other reason than some of these students have yet to see some of the best Netflix has to offer. After all, what good would a Netflix seminar be if we didn’t spend time talking about “Stranger Things,” “Black Mirror” and the “Tiger King” documentary?
COVID-19 is complicating my ability to teach this course in the way I would during a normal semester. A handful of mask-wearing students come to our Payiavlas classroom in YSU’s new Constantini Media Center, while the rest attend from a distance, opting to participate via video conference.
Read more at https://www.vindy.com/life/lifestyles/2020/09/watch-videos-together-with-browser-extensions/ (may encounter paywall).
Dr. Adam C. Earnheardt is professor of communication studies the department of communication at Youngstown State University in Youngstown, OH, USA where he also directs the graduate program in professional communication. He researches and writes about communication and relationships, parenting and sports. He writes a weekly column for The Vindicator and Tribune-Chronicle newspapers on social media and society.