Monday, January 25, 2016

Virtual reality: A new frontier in journalism ethics

The sun is shining. Oleg, a Ukrainian boy of 11, smiles as he bikes down a street lined with trees and ruined houses. His companion rides slightly behind, gesturing into the distance and shouting.
This scene from "The Displaced" stands apart from the others. Much of the 11-minute film from The New York Times Magazine is harsh and unforgiving, telling the story of three children driven from their homes by war. It does so through virtual reality, immersing viewers in the swamps of South Sudan, the rural Ukrainian village of Nikishino, the cucumber fields of Lebanon. In a movie darkened by suffering, Oleg's joyful race down the street shows the resilience of children in the face of terrible hardship. Virtual reality: A new frontier in journalism ethics

Watch Our HBO Episode About How the UK’s Cocaine Habit Funds Islamic Extremists Vice 

The ABC has denied the claim but in a number of messages on Twitter and Facebook Nick Ross claimed otherwise. “Mixed emotions here: I’ve left the ABC. Some stuff still falling out but hey, I can potentially write about #NBN again(!)..” he tweeted. When asked by a Twitter user if he was “gagged”, Ross replied “yes”.
In a statement published by The Australian, the ABC said: “As our record makes clear, the ABC covers all issues of public importance thoroughly and independently.”
“The Bible is, after all, a deeply personal book for most people. And although one of the main lessons of Kushner’s investigation is that there is more distance and artifice between the original Bible and its modern reader than many would care to admit, she has done a wonderful job of capturing the passionate complexity of the process that has led us here.”
The Grammar of God by Aviya Kushner

Danny Leigh on Oscar favourite ‘Spotlight’ and cinema’s relationship with the media Journalism in the movies
… And how this helped give rise to the criminal empire of Chapo Guzmán

How DEA Agents Took Down Mexico's Most Vicious Drug Cartel

Gary L. Alford was running on adrenaline when he arrived for work on a Monday in June 2013, at the Drug Enforcement Administration office in the Chelsea neighborhood of Manhattan. A tax investigator, he had spent much of the weekend in the living room of his New Jersey townhouse, scrolling through arcane chat rooms and old blog posts, reading on well after his fiancée had gone to sleep.

The work had given Mr. Alford what he believed was the answer to a mystery that had confounded investigators for nearly two years: the identity of the mastermind behind the online drug bazaar known as Silk Road -- a criminal known only by his screen name, Dread Pirate Roberts.

When Mr. Alford showed up for work that Monday, he had a real name and a location. He assumed the news would be greeted with excitement. Instead, he says, he got the brushoff. 
He recalls asking the prosecutor on the case, out of frustration, ''What about what I said is not compelling?''
After the arrest, though, his role in the case was recognized with a plaque from his superiors featuring a quotation from Sherlock Holmes: ''The world is full of obvious things which nobody by chance ever observes.''

horses links
The Gun by Fuminori Nakamura, translated by Allison Markin Powell:
Like any good potboiler worth its salt, Fuminori Nakamura’s The Gun wastes no time setting up its premise: “Last night, I found a gun. Or you could say I stole it, I’m not really sure. I’ve never seen something so beautiful, or that feels so right in my hand. I didn’t have much interest in guns before, but the moment I saw it, all I could think about was making it mine.”
The “I” here is a young man named Nishikawa. He’s probably in his 20s, because he’s a university student, but beyond that, there’s not much to glean from his personal life, because he’s not one for introspection. Much more fascinating is his new object of obsession, and like a man sleepwalking through life, Nishikawa finally seems to have a purpose: to use that gun.
For a debut novel, there is a lot to like here. Despite some clunky and repetitive prose, Nakamura knows how to ratchet up the tension, as we slowly progress from Nishikawa simply owning the gun, to taking care of the gun, to bringing the gun around with him, until finally, feeling like he needs to shoot that gun, at something or someone. Even as readers we know this is a foregone conclusion, but Nakamura, particularly as we barrel into the climax, knows how to employ multiple bait and switches to keep us guessing as to Nishikawa’s ultimate fate.
For the rest of the review, go here

A primer on the damaging movement to privatize public schools Washington Post 

Income Inequality Makes Whole Countries Less Happy Harvard Business Review. The bigger deal is that inequality shortens lifespans, even among the rich. 

It’s time for Europe to turn the tables on bullying Britain Guardian
Taking Ukraine’s carrot IRRUSSIANALITY  

Cologne attacks: Germany to make foreign deportations easier BBC 

Germany Just Screwed Europe Global Guerrillas  

Swedish police investigating alleged officer-led coverup of sexual assaults by migrants Washington Post 

Iran detains 10 US sailors in Gulf BBC. Not one but two boats had mechanical problems and drifted into Iranian waters 

The Internet of Things that Talk About You Behind Your Back Bruce Schneier 

What are Americans willing to trade their privacy for? Christian Science Monitor. Confirms that people will agree to surveillance if it’s pitched as enhancing their “security”

Are liberals or conservatives more simple-minded?

"Interesting to see “The Social Network” movie in 2010 end with ‘ is now valued at $25 billion’. Today,  market cap is $280b.”  Tweet here.

Publisher Penguin Random House in the UK is the latest company to change the way it hires new job applicants. The company has announced its future job applicants will no longer need a university degree to apply for work.

HOW SEXISSSSSSS: Defining Sexism Down.  The poor dears.  They should stay home.  Hiding from the evil world outside