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ISIS on the TV Screen

Friday, June 20, 2014

As ISIS storms through Iraq, its allies and enemies wage an information war on television. Elliott Colla, professor of Arabic and Islamic Studies at Georgetown and author of the crime novel, Baghdad Central, has been watching the events unfold onscreen alongside his wife's Iraqi family, who recently resettled from Baghdad to Amman. Colla reads part of his essay, “Watching ISIS on TV,” published in the online magazine Jadaliyya, and talks with Brooke about the origins of Iraq's frenzied media landscape.

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On The Media

Timesify Makes It Look Like You're Reading a New York Times Article, Even When You're Not

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Every human adult person has at least one website they read religiously, but that they shamefully alt + tab away from whenever a coworker walks by. 

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On The Media

Your Congressperson Has An Email Address Now, Whether They Want it Or Not

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

It’s surprisingly hard to email your elected officials. There’s a forest of forms and hoops to jump through, presumably because politicians get tons of spam and want to make it so that the only people who email them are real humans who have made a dogged attempt to do so. Which is good for their inboxes, but arguably a little wobbly as a democratic idea.

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On The Media

Lawsuit Against Peoria's Mayor, Who Raided a House Over a Parody Twitter Account

Friday, June 13, 2014

Last year, 29-year-old Jon Daniel created @peoriamayor, a twitter account that parodied Mayor Jim Ardis as a foul-mouthed, booze swilling, drug taking buffoon with a predilection for prostitutes. It was a sloppily written, immature joke, featuring tweets like "...Who stole my crackpipe?" and "If you don't like Peoria and u wanna sit here and bitch about den leave." Daniel says it was meant as a joke for his friends.

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On The Media

Managing a Monster

Friday, June 13, 2014

Slender Man, the fictional online horror meme, has been much discussed in cable news lately, cited as the motive behind two violent attacks. But the genesis of the Slender Man was far from sinister. Back in January OTM producer and TLDR co-host Alex Goldman talked to Slender Man's creator, Eric Knudsen, Programming note: A longer version of this story originally appeared on TLDR -- OTM's new blog and podcast

 

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On The Media

Failing the Turing Test

Friday, June 13, 2014

It was widely reported this week that for the first time ever, a computer program had passed the "Turing Test." The trouble is, the story was a sham. Brooke talks with Tech Dirt's Mike Masnick about how the media should have known better. 

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On The Media

The Bergdahl Controversy, The Slenderman Panic, and a Cantor Narrative

Friday, June 13, 2014

This week On the Media analyzes the Bowe Bergdahl controversy - the story of a prisoner exchange that has quickly become a partisan issue. Plus, a conversation with the creator of Slender Man - the online horror meme at the center of at least two deadly assaults. 

On The Media

Trying to Make it News

Friday, June 13, 2014

For years the Sudanese government has been waging a bombing campaign against civilians in Nuba, a region in the country's South. The conflict has gone unreported by most media outlets, except one: Nuba Reports. Brooke talks with the site's founder, Ryan Boyette, about his efforts to bring global attention to the crisis. 

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On The Media

A Prisoner Dilemma

Friday, June 13, 2014

The exchange of American POW Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl for five Taliban prisoners in Guantanamo has set off a political firestorm whose flames have been fanned by wild speculation in the absence of clear facts. Brooke wades through the breathless conjecture to ponder what's really behind this controversy.

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On The Media

Intelligence Community Directive 119

Friday, June 13, 2014

Back in April, the Office of the Director of National Intelligence’s website quietly posted Intelligence Community Directive 119, whose implications could be devastating for journalists. Bob speaks to Steven Aftergood about what effect this directive could have on contact between intelligence officials and the press.

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A Cantor Narrative

Friday, June 13, 2014

The moment it became clear House Majority Leader Eric Cantor would suffer a shocking primary loss to David Brat, reporters began speculating about what the result would mean for Republican candidates across the country. Bob talks with North Star Opinion Research President Whit Ayers who says the media is once again extrapolating too much from too little.  

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On The Media

Game Changer

Friday, June 13, 2014

Tetris, the world's most ubiquitous and probably most addictive video game, turned thirty this week. To celebrate, we revisit Bob's conversation with the creator of Tetris, Alexey Pajitnov, on the game's twenty-fifth anniversary back in 2009.

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On The Media

Google Finally Speaks On the Record About Metafilter

Thursday, June 12, 2014

On TLDR episode #27, we talked to Matt Haughey, the owner of Metafilter, about how his site saw a sudden traffic drop in November, 2012. He attributed the drop to a change in Google’s algorithm, something we essentially couldn’t confirm because Google refused to comment. Danny Sullivan, who also featured in our story, reports that yesterday, Google’s search-swami Matt Cutts confirmed that Metafilter was indeed hit by a change in the algorithm.

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On The Media

RSS Reader Feedly is Being Held Hostage By a DDOS Attack

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Feedly, one of the most popular post-Google Reader RSS readers, has been unavailable for hours due to a denial of service attack against the site.

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On The Media

The New "Game" By Minecraft's Creator Is An Indictment of Independent Games

Monday, June 09, 2014

Markus "Notch" Persson, the creator of the massively successful independent game Minecraft has a long-awaited follow up to his groundbreaking open world game. Unfortunately for fans, his new "game," Cliffhorse, is deliberately an unplayable mess.

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On The Media

TLDR #28 - No Trail

Sunday, June 08, 2014

In February of this year, Philip Welsh of Silver Spring, Maryland, was murdered. His murder remains unsolved, largely because he didn't use the internet, and left no digital trail. Alex talks to Philip's family and reporter Dan Morse about the case.

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On The Media

Yes, We Were Followed On Twitter By Taye Diggs. No, We're Not Special

Friday, June 06, 2014

On TLDR #26, we talked to Buzzfeed's Charlie Warzel about what we can glean from people's non-textual online communication. Like their Twitter favorites, their Facebook likes, who they choose to follow on Instagram, and what it means to us common folk when a celebrity interacts with us online.

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On The Media

Colbert Wages War on Amazon

Friday, June 06, 2014

Here's what happens when the mega-globo store starts picking on one publisher. Specifically, Stephen Colbert's publisher.

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On The Media

Data after Death

Friday, June 06, 2014

We don’t know for certain who owns our digital legacies after we die. A group of legal volunteers called the Uniform Law Commission is trying to sort this out with model legislation they call the Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act, or FADA. The goal is to give executors and other legal proxies access to files created by the deceased. Bob speaks to Suzanne Brown Walsh, attorney and chair of FADA, about the act.

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On The Media

A Year of Snowden

Friday, June 06, 2014

On the one-year anniversary of Edward Snowden’s NSA leaks, Brooke reflects on the man who set off a global debate about surveillance and the right to privacy, and whose personal saga and public image continue to intrigue and divide us.

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