The ruse of ‘fake news’

first_img Town halls, without the screaming or scripting Catching criminals through their relatives’ DNA Panelists ponder the future of journalism in a click-happy, unsourced world Fake news is giving reality a run for its money Related The Boston Globe To ensure that false content isn’t amplified across platforms, the study called on companies to do a better job of policing the use of software bots that control fake accounts — studies have estimated that anywhere from 9 to 15 percent of active Twitter accounts are bots, and that there may be as many as 60 million bots on Facebook — and identify and remove false content.“Generally, the platforms should avoid accidentally amplifying low-quality content when detecting what is trending,” Lazer said. “That seems like a no-brainer.”Though major companies like Google, Facebook, and Twitter have taken steps to counteract fake news, with Twitter moving to block accounts linked to Russian misinformation and Facebook announcing plans to shift its algorithm to account for “quality” in its content curation, the authors said the platforms have not provided enough detail about those steps for the research community to evaluate them properly.The authors outline two primary strategies to stem the flow and influence of fake news: empowering individuals to better evaluate the credibility of news and news sources they encounter, and making structural changes to prevent exposure to fake news in the first place.Though neither goal will be easy, Baum and Lazer admit, both could, over time, help restore citizen trust and credibility in news and information sources.“Our call here is to promote interdisciplinary research with the objective of reducing the spread of fake news and of addressing the underlying pathologies it has revealed,” the authors wrote. “More broadly, we must answer a fundamental question: How can we create a news ecosystem and culture that values and promotes truth?”This research was supported with funding from the Shorenstein Center at the Harvard Kennedy School and the NULab for Texts, Maps, and Networks at Northeastern University. Finding genetic needles in database haystacks As Americans increasingly turn to social media as their primary source for news and information, the dangers posed by the phenomenon of “fake news” are growing.Reports of foreign influence on the 2016 U.S. presidential election are only the most high-profile example of how the infusion of misinformation into social media can influence democratic institutions. Determining how to measure and counter untruths in the digital age, however, is still in its early stages.In a recent study described in the journal Science, lead authors Matthew Baum, the Marvin Kalb Professor of Global Communications, David Lazer, a professor at Northeastern University and an associate of the Harvard Institute for Quantitative Social Science, and more than a dozen co-authors argue that a multidisciplinary effort is needed to understand better how the internet spreads content and how readers process the news and information they consume. Such broad-based efforts are necessary, the authors said, “to reduce the spread of fake news and to address the underlying pathologies it has revealed.”“There needs to be some regular auditing of what the platforms are doing and how much this information is spreading,” Lazer added, “because there is a collective interest in the quality of the information ecosystem that we all live in.”In addition to Baum and Lazer, the paper was co-authored by Yochai Benkler, Adam J. Berinsky, Kelly M. Greenhill, Filippo Menczer, Miriam J. Metzger, Brendan Nyhan, Gordon Pennycook, David Rothschild, Michael Schudson, Steven A. Sloman, Cass R. Sunstein, Emily A. Thorson, Duncan J. Watts, and Jonathan L. Zittrain.The rise of fake news, the authors said, can be chalked up in part to two opposing trends in American society. Recent Gallup polls have found a growing mistrust of U.S. media, and studies have also said that nearly half of Americans “often or sometimes” get their news from social media, with Facebook being the dominant source.While those platforms have enabled new information sources and voices to emerge, they have also made it far easier for people to engage only with homogeneous social networks and take in only information that affirms their own views, thereby exacerbating the ideological divides in the country.“The internet has reduced many [previously enforced] constraints on dissemination of news. This allows outlets that do not embody these norms to compete online with those that do on a relatively more equal footing than was possible offline,” the authors argued in the paper. “This has contributed to the abandonment of traditional news sources that had long enjoyed high levels of public trust and credibility.”In some cases, Baum and Lazer said, social networks have unwittingly become complicit in amplifying fake news.As an example, they point to Twitter’s trending mechanism. When the platform notices a surge in tweets about a particular topic — such as a celebrity’s birthday or an approaching nor’easter — Twitter may list the topic as trending. But studies have repeatedly shown that the process can be manipulated. In one case journalists found that for as little as $200, a company in Saudi Arabia would deploy an army of bots to make any hashtag trend for a few hours.last_img read more

Advertorial: Cargostore Worldwide Trading opens container depot in Eemshaven

first_imgBy Cargostore Worldwide Trading LtdCargostore Worldwide Trading Ltd have opened a container depot in Eemshaven to meet the demands of their customers in Northern Europe. Utilising DHSS yard space, the independent depot is testimony to the rapid growth the company has experienced, necessitating the expansion into Holland to supply offshore equipment efficiently.The depot enables Cargostore to manage a full range of Offshore DNV 2.7-1 certified equipment and have an established point of contact for customers within Eemshaven and the surrounding provinces. Cargostore is one of the few CCU and container rental companies that has a complete and diverse range of Offshore DNV 2.7-1 CCUs on the ground in strategic ports covering the entire North Sea area, allowing them to support the Offshore & Offshore Wind Industry to an outstanding degree.The newly secured affiliation between Cargostore and Eemshaven comes rapidly after the appointment of Dennis Shouwenaar within the London-based global offshore & shipping container specialist as the Sales Manager Offshore Northern Europe, working remotely in Holland.The new Holland base aligns with Cargostore’s strategic motto of ‘Global reach, local touch’ which aims to provide the very best in customer service for its clients worldwide. It is the second global office/depot to be established by Cargostore within the last six months; the other based in Abu Dhabi, UAE.With a background working within both the shipping container and offshore industries, Schouwenaar brings knowledge of sales logistics, specialist equipment and the dynamics of offshore trade to his role at Cargostore.Says Sales Manager Offshore Northern Europe Dennis Schouwenaar: “I was delighted to join Cargostore as they are one of the world’s fastest growing suppliers of offshore DNV 2.7-1 certified CCUs and ISO shipping containers worldwide. I believe one of our strengths is the ability to provide the very highest level of customer service which is made possible by our local speaking staff, constant availability and strategic offices and depots in the UK, Abu Dhabi, USA, Middle East, Germany and in the Netherlands.“There are exciting times ahead in the Offshore Energy & Renewable Energy sector and I am looking forward to meeting these challenges together as part of the Cargostore Worldwide Trading Ltd. team.“Our further investment in equipment in the region is a further demonstration of Cargostore’s commitment to ensure our customers always receive the best equipment and service that they deserve.Keen to supply their Northern Europe customers without delay, Cargostore has stocked their depots with equipment and has the capacity to meet demand immediately.Disclosure: This article was produced by Cargostore Worldwide Trading Ltd and does not necessarily reflect the view of Offshore Energy Today. No member of the editorial team took part in creation of this advertorial.last_img read more

Dhrupad Kashyap Bags Silver At Commonwealth Chess Championship 2019

first_imgGUWAHATI: Dhrupad Kashyap of Assam Chess Club won silver medal at the Commonwealth Chess Championship 2019 which concluded at New Delhi on Sunday. Dhrupad, a grade IX student of Sarala Birla Gyan Jyoti School, Amingaon, scored 5 points in 7 rounds competition and remained undefeated in the entire tournament. In the final round he drew his game with Grandmaster Erigaisi Arjun of Telengana who emerged champion in the event. Dhrupad by virtue of his excellent performance also gained a total of 66 FIDE Rating from this tournament. Also Read: Dhrupad Kashyap wins in Inter School Chess held in Guwahatilast_img

Canelo to face GGG in September

first_imgLAS VEGAS, Nevada (AP):Minutes after turning what was touted as a big fight into a glorified sparring session, Saul ‘Canelo’ Alvarez invited his next opponent into the ring.About 90 minutes later, Alvarez had already changed into a suit and tie to pose for the first stare down with Gennady ‘GGG’ Golovkin.At long last, Alvarez is ready to give boxing fans what they want. The two will square off on September 16, Mexican Independence Day.”I’m very happy that this fight is finally here,” Alvarez said through an interpreter, “the one that a lot of you said would never be made.”Alvarez, who had been fighting at light middleweight, had been accused of ducking the heavier Golovkin for a year. But after pummelling countryman Julio Cesar Chavez Jr on Saturday night, Mexico’s top fighter is eager for the long overdue mega fight to determine the middleweight champion.”For us, this is the biggest fight in boxing,” Golovkin said.The Kazakhstan native owns the IBF, WBA and WBC middleweight titles. Alvarez had to relinquish his WBC belt to Golovkin (37-0, 33 KOs) last year when he declined a mandatory challenge.GOING TO HAPPEN”I’ve always stated that Triple G will happen in 2017,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Alvarez’s promoter. “Everybody was saying, ‘Why are you afraid of Triple G? Why is this not going to happen?’ I told everybody it’s going to happen in September, and we’re extremely proud and happy that this fight is going to take place.”Still to be determined is the venue, and De La Hoya insisted it could be “anywhere in the world.” One possibility is AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas, which would allow for a crowd upwards of 100,000. The Dallas Cowboys play away from home that weekend, making it an option.last_img read more