Monday, November 22, 2021

Fear and shame are making it harder to fight ransomware and accidental data loss

 At dramatic rehearsals, the only author that's better than an absent one is a dead one.

— George S. Kaufman, born in 1889

Tech Republic: “A study of knowledge workers in 10 countries found that workplace cultures of blame and fear are causing businesses to lose critical, sensitive data that could have otherwise been saved if employees were comfortable enough to come forward Enterprise data protection company Veritas Technologies published the study, which focused on “the damage that workplace blame cultures are having on the success of cloud adoption,” and focuses specifically on worker response to incidents they’ve had on those platforms…”

Fear and shame are making it harder to fight ransomware and accidental data loss

You Are the Object of a Secret Extraction Operation - New York Times Opinion, Dr. Shoshana Zuboff, professor emeritus at Harvard Business School and the author of The Age of Surveillance Capitalism –  “Facebook is not just any corporation. It reached trillion-dollar status in a single decade by applying the logic of what I call surveillance capitalism — an economic system built on the secret extraction and manipulation of human data — to its vision of connecting the entire world. Facebook and other leading surveillance capitalist corporations now control information flows and communication infrastructures across the world. These infrastructures are critical to the possibility of a democratic society, yet our democracies have allowed these companies to own, operate and mediate our information spaces unconstrained by public law. The result has been a hidden revolution in how information is produced, circulated and acted upon. A parade of revelations since 2016, amplified by the whistle-blower Frances Haugen’s documentation and personal testimony, bears witness to the consequences of this revolution. 

The world’s liberal democracies now confront a tragedy of the “un-commons.” Information spaces that people assume to be public are strictly ruled by private commercial interests for maximum profit. The internet as a self-regulating market has been revealed as a failed experiment. Surveillance capitalism leaves a trail of social wreckage in its wake: the wholesale destruction of privacy, the intensification of social inequality, the poisoning of social discourse with defactualized information, the demolition of social norms and the weakening of democratic institutions. These social harms are not random. They are tightly coupled effects of evolving economic operations. Each harm paves the way for the next and is dependent on what went before.

 There is no way to escape the machine systems that surveil us, whether we are shopping, driving or walking in the park. All roads to economic and social participation now lead through surveillance capitalism’s profit-maximizing institutional terrain, a condition that has intensified during nearly two years of global plague. Will Facebook’s digital violence finally trigger our commitment to take back the “un-commons”? Will we confront the fundamental but long ignored questions of an information civilization: How should we organize and govern the information and communication spaces of the digital century in ways that sustain and advance democratic values and principles?…”

The Story of One Whale Who Tried to Bridge the Linguistic Divide Between Animals and HumansSmithsonian

Top Barclays investors raise alarm over terms of Jes Staley’s exit FT. Previously on our show: “Jes Staley exchanged 1,200 emails with Epstein that included unexplained phrases.” Well, at least Staley isn’t a lizard.

The Behaviors and Attitudes of U.S. Adults on Twitter

“Roughly one-quarter of U.S. adults now use Twitter, and the site has become a space where users get newsdiscuss topics like sports, engage in personal communication or hear from elected officials. Pew Research Center recently conducted an in-depth survey of U.S. adults who use Twitter, looking to better understand their behaviors and experiences on the site along with their attitudes towards the service. The survey included a subset of respondents who shared their Twitter profiles for research purposes, allowing their survey responses to be matched to their actual Twitter activity. As in many of the Center’s surveys of technology and online platforms, this study finds that Twitter users report a mix of both positive and negative experiences on the site. For instance, 46% of these users say the site has increased their understanding of current events in the last year, and 30% say it has made them feel more politically engaged. On the other hand, 33% of users report seeing a lot of misleading or inaccurate information there, and 53% say inaccurate or misleading information is a major problem on the site. The analysis also reveals another familiar pattern on social media: that a relatively small share of highly active users produce the vast majority of content. An analysis of tweets by this representative sample of U.S. adult Twitter users from June 12 to Sept. 12, 2021, finds that the most active 25% of U.S. adults on Twitter by tweet volume produced 97% of all tweets from these users…”

Scientists Used AI to Track Spiders Building Webs in The Dark in Unprecedented Detail Science Alert 

Try, try and try again: why did modern humans take so long to settle in Europe? Guardian 

  1. Fine-Tuning, by Simon Friederich.
  2. Fuzzy Logic, by Petr Cintula, Christian G. Fermüller, and Carles Noguera.
  3. Moral Sentimentalism, by Antti Kauppinen.
  4. Naturalism in Classical Indian Philosophy, by Amita Chatterjee.
  5. Cusanus, Nicolaus [Nicolas of Cusa], by Clyde Lee Miller.
  6. Self-Knowledge, by Brie Gertler.
  7. Suicide, by Michael Cholbi.
  8. John Anderson, by Creagh McLean Cole.
  9. Publicity, by Axel Gosseries and Tom Parr

IEP      ∅  


  1. The Epistemology of Groups by Jennifer Lackey is reviewed by Jeff Dunn.  

1000-Word Philosophy      

  1. Cosmological Arguments for the Existence of God, by Thomas Metcalf. 

Project Vox      ∅  

Recent Philosophy Book Reviews in Non-Academic Media     

  1. The Philosophy of Symbolic Forms by Ernst Cassirer, translated by Steve G. Lofts, is reviewed by Jonathan Rée at London Review of Books. 

Compiled by Michael Glawson

Bonus: The simplest explanation