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TLDR #34 - The Accidental Outing of Rwanda's Most Powerful Troll

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Steve Terrill is a journalist who worked in Rwanda, until he accidentally got the office of Rwanda's president to implicate itself in a long-running online harassment campaign.
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On The Media

#34 - The Accidental Outing of Rwanda's Most Powerful Troll

Monday, August 18, 2014

Steve Terrill is a journalist who works in Rwanda until he accidentally got the office of Rwanda's president to implicate itself in a long-running online harassment campaign.
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On The Media

TLDR #32 - An Imperfect Match

Monday, August 04, 2014

Last week, dating site OK Cupid put up a blog post describing experiments it conducted on its users. In one experiment, the site told users who were bad matches for one another that they were actually good matches, and vice versa. Alex and PJ talk to OK Cupid President and co-founder Christian Rudder about the ubiquity of online user experimentation and his defense of potentially sending OK Cupid's users on bad dates.

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On The Media

#32 - An Imperfect Match

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Some users of dating site OkCupid are upset at revelations that it was deliberately experimenting on its users by taking people who were bad matches and telling they were actually good for one another.

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On The Media

#31 - Race Swap

Thursday, July 17, 2014

What happened when a black woman writer went online disguised as a white man? She got a lot fewer death threats, for one thing.

 

 

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On The Media

TLDR #2 - Stereotyped

Monday, July 07, 2014

This is a repeat of TLDR #2.

Christopher Hermelin has a project called "The Roving Typist," where he writes stories for people in the park on his typewriter. One day last summer, he found his photo posted to Reddit, and suddenly his image was the butt of jokes all over the internet. We talked to him about what it feels like to become a meme.

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TLDR #30 - The Russian Troll Army

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Last month, documents surfaced that showed a company called the Internet Research Agency was paying people in Russia to go to an office and post pro-Kremlin comments all day. Alex talks to Buzzfeed's Max Seddon about why they do it, and how successful they actually are at swaying public opinion.

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On The Media

TLDR #29 - Olivia Taters, Robot Teenager

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Rob Dubbin accidentally built a teenage girl named Olivia Taters who lives on the internet. She may not always communicate in complete sentences, but she's convincing enough that teenagers actually converse with her. Also, she's very, very funny. PJ talks to Dubbin about how Olivia came into existence, and what she's been talking about lately.

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On The Media

#29 - Olivia Taters, Robot Teenager

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

She may not always communicate in complete sentences, but she's convincing enough that teenagers actually converse with her. Also, she's very, very funny.

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On The Media

On the Internet someone will always believe that you’re Rachel Leigh Cook.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Bill Gates, like several billion other people, has kids. His eldest is named Jennifer Katharine Gates, and a chunk of the Internet seems to think that she looks identical to actress Rachel Leigh Cook. The problem with that is that she looks nothing like Cook, people have just been posting images of Cook labeled as photos of Gates for years. A search for her name on Google Image Search yields a wall of photos of Cook, along with one or two of the real Gates.

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On The Media

Match.Com Uses Facial Recognition Software To Pair Users With People Who Look Like Their Exes

Monday, June 16, 2014

When it comes to dating, people generally have a type. Blonds, brunettes, big noses, little ears, a person often finds an immutable set of physical characteristics attractive. It's just a fact. So enterprising online dating company Match.com is hoping to capitalize on this tendency. Partnering with an LA based company called Three Day Rule that matches people to dates using facial recognition software, users will be asked to send in pictures of their exes, which will be used to determine who they will be matched with on the site. 

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On The Media

Should Some Death Threats Be Considered Protected Speech?

Monday, June 16, 2014

According to a new Supreme Court ruling, some death threats are more death threat-y than others.

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On The Media

A Website That Allows You To Make Homer Simpson Disappear Into Any Picture You Wish

Friday, June 13, 2014

Have you ever had a family photo that you thought could use some sprucing up? Maybe you would like Homer Simpson to slowly back into it and disappear as though the picture were a hedge? Sure, we all would. Well, thanks to modern technology, what was once a dream is now a reality!

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On The Media

We're Happy to Report That Webdriver Torso Is Not A Viral Advertisement

Monday, June 09, 2014

The secret is out, and we're happy to report that it's not a viral ad for a sci-fi property or a stupid art project.

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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

#28 - No Trail

Thursday, June 05, 2014

The murder of Philip Welsh remains unsolved, largely because he didn't use the internet, and left no digital trail. 

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On The Media

The Internet Responds To Net Neutrality in a Big Way

Wednesday, June 04, 2014

Last Sunday, John Oliver gave a 13-minute soliloquy about the fragile state of net neutrality, and ended with a plea exhorting the trolls of the internet to contact the FCC and let it know just how they felt. Looks like it worked.

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On The Media

TLDR #27 - How Google is Killing the Best Site On the Internet

Monday, June 02, 2014

A couple weeks ago, Matt Haughey, the founder of TLDR's favorite website, Metafilter, announced that his website is dying. And he says it's because Google algorithmically stopped directing traffic to the site over a year ago. Alex tries to figure out what you do when Google's algorithm decides it no longer likes you.

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