The 2020 election In the weeks before the November 3 election, the big social media sites took steps to mitigate election-related extremism and disinformation. Twitter rolled out labels for all mail-in ballot misinformation and put a prompt on tweeted articles to encourage people to read them before retweeting. Facebook blocked QAnon groups and, later, restricted QAnon-adjacent accounts pushing “SaveTheChildren” conspiracy theories. Facebook also began prohibiting Holocaust denial posts. YouTube labeled and blocked advertising for election-related fake information, though it left in place many videos promoting conspiracy theories. … [Read more...] about The rise, fall, and future of Parler, the right-wing site that Amazon shut down
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A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn It’s always a good time to read, or reread, A People’s History of the United States by Howard Zinn, but it may be a more salient text today than ever before. The book shows how the American history we learned in school is often an obfuscation of real events, wherein large groups of Americans have been repeatedly exploited by privileged interests. The relevance to design is perhaps not direct, but in 2021 I can’t think of anything more important for a designer to prioritize than understanding what it means to be a citizen of this country. —Khoi Vinh, senior director of product design, Adobe … [Read more...] about The 14 most important books for designers to read right now
While it has been disruptive for less than two decades, the pervasiveness of online shopping has made e-commerce feel like it’s been around for a whole lot longer. When Marc Andreessen introduced the first widely distributed web browser in the early 1990s, it was only a matter of time before the platform became monetized. No one remembers the companies who started it all, paving the way for the likes of First Virtual and CyberCash, but everyone knows eBay and Amazon, the ones who scaled, disrupted market spaces, and broke the mold. There’s no doubt they’ve kept innovation as a key component to their business model, but young upstarts are creeping in behind them with new groundbreaking models. … [Read more...] about What The Fancy Is Doing Right With Online Shopping
These “coded” symbols, and others newly borrowed from Norse myth, are even harder to spot and condemn. Sky recently canceled a reality TV show after viewers complained one contestant was covered in tattoos—including on his face—that could be seen as having far-right connotations. But if certain symbols are hard for the general public to spot, they are certainly dog whistles to members of an increasingly global white supremacist movement who know exactly what they mean. … [Read more...] about Why far-right groups co-opt Norse symbols
We’ve seen the U.K.’s Department for Transport announce a 2 billion pound package to encourage active travel and aimed at doubling cycling and increasing walking to work by 2025. Similarly, Paris rolled out 650 kilometers of cycleways, Milan revealed that it will transform 35 km to support cycling and walking infrastructure, and Germany decided to expand its cycle lanes to meet the demand of active travelers. … [Read more...] about The pandemic created a biking explosion. How can cities make it permanent?