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One Degree Quick Reads … April 1, 2019

The future of print: from fish wrap to Facebook

Waddell’s career took him from publication to publication, city to city, and print to television, finally landing him here, a few stories above the Rideau River as a professor in the school of journalism and communication and director of the newly-launched media production and design program at Carleton.

His eyes crinkle with a sarcastic smile when he’s asked if the death of print journalism is inevitable.


Facebook makes vague noises about ‘restrictions’ on live video after tragedy

Facebook could impose new limits on who can live stream to Facebook Live following the Christchurch terror attack, which was broadcast live on the social network.

In an open letter published in the New Zealand Herald, Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg laid out steps the company is taking to change its policies following criticism after the Christchurch terrorist attack. Among them: new rules on who is allowed to use Facebook Live.


Google Can’t Please Everyone

Google hasn’t been clicking for investors lately. In part, that is because there is only so much one of the world’s largest and highest-valued companies can do to look small.


Facebook explored using a fleet of tiny, bird-sized drones to boost mobile internet speeds

Facebook has for years explored ways to help improve mobile connectivity and bring more of the population in developed countries get online, ostensibly a humanitarian effort but more of a thinly veiled ploy to bring more people into its app ecosystem. That effort’s most visible projects have been Facebook’s initiative, with its Free Basics and Express Wi-Fi offerings for fast-growing smartphone markets, and the discontinued Aquila project, which sought to fly large, solar-powered drones that could beam down internet much like Alphabet’s high-flying Loon helium balloons.


Are Echo Chambers a Threat to Intellectual Freedom?

A feature of digital communication that has provoked concern is the presumed existence of echo chambers. An echo chamber, in this context, is taken to be an environment where people experience only similar opinions to their own, and where contradictory or alternative opinions are not considered. Their existence has been taken to be a threat to debate and intellectual development by many: “The echo chamber may be comforting, but ultimately it locks us into perpetual tribalism, and does tangible damage to our understanding.”1 That is to say, the existence of the echo chamber is taken to limit our freedom to learn and to tolerate differences of opinion.


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