Sunday, April 16, 2017

Disrupted Tech and Human Resources

Almanac: Theodore Dalrymple on outrage 

INK BOTTLE“Outrage is a substitute for religion: It convinces us that our existence has some kind of meaning or significance beyond itself, that is to say beyond the paltry flux of day-to-day existence, especially when that existence is a securely comfortable one. Therefore we go looking for things to be outraged about as anteaters look for ants. Of all emotions, outrage is not only one of the most pleasurable but also one of the most reliable.”
Theodore Dalrymple, “Better Left Unsaid” (Taki’s Magazine, Dec. 31, 2016, courtesy of Patrick Kurp)

Tax March turns into demand for Trump's IRS filings; 20 reported arrests

Thousands of protesters turned out Saturday in events across the country to demand President Trump release his full IRS returns, mostly large-but-peaceful ...

Google and Facebook will grab 70 per cent of digital ad spend by 2020

As Robert Conquest once said, “The simplest way to explain the behavior of any bureaucratic organization is to assume that it is controlled by a cabal of its enemies.”

 Stewart, Daxton, Killer Apps: Vanishing Messages, Encrypted Communications, and Challenges to Freedom of Information Laws When Public Officials “Go Dark”  - Broken link (April 13, 2017). Available at SSRN:
“In the early weeks of the new presidential administration, White House staffers were communicating among themselves and leaking to journalists using apps such as Signal and Confide, which allow users to encrypt messages or to make them vanish after being received. By using these apps, government officials are “going dark” by avoiding detection of their communications in a way that undercuts freedom of information laws. In this paper, the author explores the challenges presented by encrypted and ephemeral messaging apps when used by government employees, examining three policy approaches – banning use of the apps, enhancing existing archiving and record-keeping practices, or legislatively expanding quasi-government body definitions – as potential ways to manage the threat to open records laws these “killer apps” present.”

"What does the junior Supreme Court justice do? Kagan tells Gorsuch it starts in the kitchen." Robert Barnes of The Washington Post has this report

Rich Americans live up to 15 years longer than poor peers, studies find The Guardian

Pew Report – “Many experts fear uncivil and manipulative behaviors on the internet will persist – and may get worse. This will lead to a splintering of social media into AI-patrolled and regulated ‘safe spaces’ separated from free-for-all zones. Some worry this will hurt the open exchange of ideas and compromise privacy..Since the early 2000s, the wider diffusion of the network, the dawn of Web 2.0 and social media’s increasingly influential impacts, and the maturation of strategic uses of online platforms to influence the public for economic and political gain have altered discourse. In recent years, prominent internet analysts and the public at large have expressed increasing concerns that the content, tone and intent of online interactions have undergone an evolution that threatens its future and theirs. Events and discussions unfolding over the past year highlight the struggles ahead..”

"What’s most convenient isn’t always what’s most effective. New research finds that people tend to overestimate the power of their persuasiveness via text-based communication, and underestimate the power of their persuasiveness via face-to-face communication." (HBR: A face-to-face request is 34 times more successful than an email)

"Joining high court, the real Neil Gorsuch set to stand up": Nancy Benac of The Associated Press has a report that begins, "Somewhere between the Republican caricature of the next justice of the Supreme Court as a folksy family guy and the Democrats' demonization of him as a cold-hearted automaton, stands Neil Gorsuch."
Larry Miller’s take is both more modern and more accurate.
“The most important thing I thought students needed was the one thing you’re never allowed to teach.”

Kassel, A. (2017, January). Disruptive Technology: Selected Sources, Musings, and a Bit of Speculation, Online Searcher 41 (1), 31-35.

Via the author: “I address topics such as:

1. What disruptive technology means for information professionals
2. Why it’s important to incorporate Web research.

Academic librarians may need to address and update policies and work with faculty to make changes. Valuable resources, wherever you find them, should be incorporated into teaching and training, imo. I make the point that not all questions can be easily or fully be answered using academic resources alone. Quoting the article, I think the flowing sentences are particularly pertinent to your questions

Centrelink’s notorious method of contacting citizens and suggesting they might owe a debt to the government is an example of poor public administration that fails to meet the requirements of administrative law, according to the Ombudsman’s office.

“We found there were issues with the usability and transparency of the system,” acting Ombudsman Richard Glenn said in a brief statement. “There were deficiencies in DHS’ service delivery and communication to customers and staff when implementing the system.”

The oversight agency has been prodding the Department of Human Services into making incremental “positive changes to the system” since it began its investigation into the much-maligned system in mid-January. But its final report, published this week, backs up complaints about the Online Compliance Initiative and says more improvements are needed to fix a list of problems that could have been prevented through better planning, testing and risk management.

Singapore 'stooges' want for ATO rules 


Staffer accuses Australian Tax Office of bullying