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New Tech City

Putting heart and the human experience into tech coverage, WNYC's New Tech City with Manoush Zomorodi investigates what all the data, constant connectivity, and perpetual "upgrades" really mean for daily life. Follow @newtechcity and subscribe to the podcast for stories of discovery on how the digital age is altering our brains, relationships, and values. 

On The Media

Between Two Poles

Friday, June 27, 2014

The Pew Research Center recently published a study titled “Political Polarization in the American Public,” which prompted a wave of alarmist reporting about how Americans are more ideologically divided than ever before. But, as Stanford political scientist Morris Fiorina explains, that's not what Pew's data actually shows.

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On The Media

Cellphone Searching, Tiny Antennas, and the High Court

Friday, June 27, 2014

This week, the Supreme Court ruled on two media technology cases, one that may save the bacon of Big Broadcast and Cable, and another that privacy advocates are heralding as a win. Bob talks with Slate's Dahlia Lithwick about the impact of these decisions.

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On The Media

#30 - The Russian Troll Army

Thursday, June 26, 2014

To help sway public opinion, a company called the Internet Research Agency pays people in Russia to go to an office and post pro-Kremlin comments all day.

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On The Media

Piracy Snitches Get...Vacations?

Thursday, June 26, 2014

For years the BSA, a group that represents the intellectual property interests of a number of software companies around the world, has been encouraging people to report their employers for using unlicensed software. Earlier this year they started offering informants part of the profits of a lawsuit or settlement, and apparently it’s working.

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On The Media

The Supreme Court Sides Against Aereo

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Since its inception, the streaming service has faced a barrage of lawsuits from broadcasters saying that it violates copyright law's prohibition against "public performance" of their content. Aereo consistently won lawsuits in lower courts, but today the company went up against the major broadcasters and lost.

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On The Media

Canadians Now Have to Ask For Permission To Spam You

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Canadian lawmakers passed a very ambitious anti-spam law that goes into effect July 1. Individual spammers can be fined up to $1 million, companies that spam can be fined up to $10 million, according to the CBC. 

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On The Media

New York Wants to Ban Tiger Cuddling Pictures

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Many men on Tinder like to post profile pictures of themselves cuddling tigers. 

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On The Media

Ok, Ok. We'll Talk About "Yo."

Friday, June 20, 2014

This week, the tech press did backflips over an app called "Yo." It's a messaging app that allows users to text the word "Yo." Nothing else. Just the word "Yo." Let that sink in for a second before we move on.

It was heralded as geniusit was derided as stupid. It was the subject of a conversation about meaning and subtext in online communication. It was given the avant garde treatment it deserved. Disregarding what was written about it, yo has cornered the internet's fickle attention long enough to enter the top 10 in the App store. By any metric, that's a victory.

We didn't write about it. Mostly because we thought there wasn't much to say that hadn't already been said. I think I acknowledged its existence on my twitter feed. Yo.

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On The Media

Threats in Cyberspace

Friday, June 20, 2014

The Supreme Court will hear a case involving Anthony Elonis, a Pennsylvania man serving jail time for posting death threats against his wife on Facebook. Elonis says he didn’t mean it literally, and it’s up to the High Court to decide if that distinction matters. Brooke talks with Slate's Dahlia Lithwick about the impact this case could have on how violent speech online is viewed in the eyes of the law.

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On The Media

Extremist Social Media

Friday, June 20, 2014

ISIS and its brutal offensive in Iraq has left the media reeling. But social media has become another battleground. Intelwire.com editor J.M. Berger has been tracking ISIS on social media for the last year, and he talks with Brooke about how the group's online strategy is better honed than its extremist competitors.

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On The Media

ISIS's Media Offensive, Online Death Threats, and What NPR Is (and Isn't)

Friday, June 20, 2014

ISIS's Twitter and television offensive, the effects of language on your morals, and what NPR is and what it isn't. 

On The Media

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

People Who Get Paid To Edit Wikipedia Articles Now Have to Admit It

Thursday, June 19, 2014

The Wikimedia Foundation announced a rule change this week. Anyone who’s been paid to edit a wikipedia page (public relations firms, for instance) is now required to disclose that on the site.

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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

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

250 New Emoji Characters Announced

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Unicode Consortium released two hundred fifty new emoji yesterday. The new set doesn't add any racial diversity, although you do get an image of a derelict house. 

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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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