Berkman Buzz: March 14, 2013

March 14, 2013

The Berkman Buzz is selected weekly from the posts of Berkman Center people and projects.
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Teens and Technology 2013: New Survey Findings from Pew Research Center & Berkman Center

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Smartphone adoption among American teens has increased substantially and mobile access to the internet is pervasive. One in four teens are “cell-mostly” internet users, who say they mostly go online using their phone and not using some other device such as a desktop or laptop computer.

These are among the new findings from a nationally representative Pew Research Center survey of 802 youth ages 12-17 and their parents that explored technology use.

From the Berkman Center, "Teens and Technology 2013: New Survey Findings from Pew Research Center & Berkman Center"
Read the full report

Zeynep Tufekci explores how Twitter can fight the spread of errors

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A common complaint about online platforms such as Twitter and Facebook is that errors and rumors propagate too easily. For example, Andy Carvin’s recent book A Distant Witness has striking examples from the Arab uprisings of 2011–and documents his extensive efforts to counter and quelch them. It’s certainly important for some people to actively play the role of fact-checkers but a lot of the errors are honest mistakes made by a wide variety of people. I’ve written previously on comparing structural sources of error in traditional journalism with social media environments and there is a lot to be done at the institutional and individual level. But that is never the whole picture. We should also be thinking about the role of design of online platforms on how to counter, correct and halt the spread of errors.

From Zeynep Tufekci's blog post, "Habemus Erratum: How Twitter Could Help Fight the Spread of Errors"
About Zeynep | @techsoc

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Given enough randomness, there's a tweet that predicts every major event. This one predicted the new pope last month
Andrés Monroy-Hernández (@andresmh)

danah boyd inducted into the SXSW-Interactive Hall of Fame

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The truth is that at this stage, the contemporary SXSW is a bit alien to me. I’m a geek. My rudimentary social skills allow me to mostly pass in most mainstream settings, but I am dreadful at casual talk and am drained by large crowds. Long lines terrify me and my hearing is pretty crap so I can’t have conversations at parties where the music overwhelms. So I often feel like a fish out of water in this new incarnation of cool. But whenever I go to Austin, I can’t help but grin with joy at how successful SXSWi has become precisely because I wanted to see a space where diverse voices could gather and engage over the future of tech.

And it’s in this context that I was both startled by and grateful for the induction into the Hall of Fame. SXSW has meant so much to me for so long that being inducted feels like a huge gift from a conference that has given me so much. I’m so very very thankful for having this event, even if I barely know a fraction of the attendees at this stage. And I’m honored by those who see me as a central part of this community, even if I feel like an awkward alien.

From danah boyd's blog post, "thank you SXSW"
About danah | @zephoria

David Weinberger ponders events vs. facts in journalism

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I want to know what happened. But what happened in Tunisia was not that some personage uttered some words. What happened was that the Islamist party failed to forge a coalition that is likely to bring that country stability. In the same way, what happened last November was not the aggregated sum of factual accounts of how people marked X’s on ballots, and was not even the county-by-county vote tallies. If you started to tell me all of that, I’d be shouting until blue in the face, “But who won the election????” because that’s what happened. Events happen, and events have meaning, which means they only show up from a point of view.

From David Weinberger's blog post, "[2b2k] Events are not the facts"
About David | @dweinberger

Meg Leta Ambrose considers "pre-dating" and first impressions

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I, like most privacy researchers, spend most of my time considering how negative information online is harmful to the subject of that information. Reading Glamour at the gym last night, I came across an article about how “pre-dating” affects relationships – got me thinking more about how too much information impacts the searcher and for the first time, how good truthful information impacts the searcher.

From Meg Leta Ambrose's blog post, "The Impact of (Good) Online First Impressions"
About Meg | @megleta

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Ken Herz & @djspooky discuss nature of a sample vs cover: With the limited scope given fair use, easier to recreate (cover) than reuse #sxsw
Wendy Seltzer (@wseltzer)

Moldova Without Government: What's Next – East or West?

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On March 5, Moldova’s Parliament passed a no-confidence motion, dismissing the country's pro-European three-party coalition government led by Vlad Filat. Just a few weeks earlier, Moldova seemed to be the greatest hope on the European Union’s Eastern borders. Now, it is headed for a serious political crisis.

From Diana Lungu's blog post for Global Voices, "Moldova Without Government: What's Next – East or West?"
About Global Voices Online | @globalvoices

This Buzz was compiled by Rebekah Heacock.

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Last updated

March 14, 2013