Thursday, January 18, 2024

Burn After Wearing

 Pakistan launches retaliatory airstrikes on Iran, as conflict spreads

Burn After Wearing

Grist – A mountain of used clothes appeared in Chile’s desert. Then it went up in flames: “…Pino, director of Santiago’s Fashion System Observatory at Universidad Diego Portales, had planned this trip for months. Astudillo had volunteered to be their guide. The mound of discarded fabric in the middle of the Atacama weighed an estimated 11,000 to 59,000 tons, equivalent to one or two times the Brooklyn Bridge.  By the time the team reached the gates of El Paso de la Mula, more than half of the clothes pile was on fire. Smoke obscured everything, hanging like an opaque black curtain. Municipal authorities turned the group away, forbidding them to stay on the premises. 

But Astudillo knew the landscape, so she directed the team to the dune’s far side, where access was still unimpeded.  There, the students surveyed the inferno. It was “like a war,” Pino said. She felt waves of heat. Black smoke unspooled from the burning clothes. The air was dense and hard to breathe. Smoke coated the back of their throats and clogged their nostrils with the acrid smell of melting plastic. They covered their faces, trying not to breathe it in. Then the group heard a series of loud pops as mini explosions burst from within the vast expanse of burning garments…

Astudillo had uncovered clothing produced by the world’s most well-known brands: Nautica, Adidas, Wrangler, Old Navy, H&M, Ralph Lauren, Tommy Hilfiger, Forever 21, Zara, Banana Republic. Store tags still dangled from many of her findings. The clothes had come to the Atacama from Europe, the United States, Korea, and Japan. Now, as Astudillo began taking pictures and uploading them to Instagram, Pino wandered the mound, horrified and fascinated by the grotesque volume and variety of apparel: ski jackets, ball gowns, bathing suits…”

Asking people to “do the research” on fake news stories makes them seem more believable, not less

Nieman Lab: “A new study asked thousands to evaluate the accuracy of news articles — both real and fake — by doing some research online. But for many, heading to Google led them farther from the truth, not closer… Media literacy proponents often advocate doing your own research — emphasis on the search, since Google is typically Tool No. 1 here — as a weapon against misinformation. Search horizontally, they say — opening new tabs to seek confirmation or debunking — rather than keep scrolling vertically. But what if, instead of yanking you toward the light, doing your own research leads you deeper into the information dark? That’s the question raised by an interesting new paper that was published over the winter break in Nature. Its title is “Online searches to evaluate misinformation can increase its perceived veracity,” and its authors are Kevin AslettZeve SandersonWilliam GodelNathaniel PersilyJonathan Nagler, and Joshua A. Tucker. (Lead author Aslett is at the University of Central Florida and Nate Persily is at Stanford. The other four authors are all at NYU.) Here’s the abstract; emphases, as usual, are mine:…Here, across five experiments, we present consistent evidence that online search to evaluate the truthfulness of false news articles actually increases the probability of believing them. To shed light on this relationship, we combine survey data with digital trace data collected using a custom browser extension. We find that the search effect is concentrated among individuals for whom search engines return lower-quality information….”

Fox Corp. launches blockchain platform to negotiate with AI firms

Via Fox Corp. – Confirm the authenticity of digital content across FOX media outlets. “Conveniently search, verify, and share your findings. Please note that the VERIFY TOOLcurrently supports verification of content from limited publications.

Verifying Image Files:

  • Upload the image file you want to verify. The supported file formats are .jpeg, .png, .avif, and .webp.
  • The VERIFY TOOL will search our database for a matching image.If a match is found, the VERIFY TOOL will display the result.

Verifying Article Links:

  • Enter the article’s link and click Search [Fox links only]
  • The VERIFY TOOL will search the database for a relevant article published to the Content Graph.
  • If a match is found, the VERIFY TOOL will display the result.
  • The VERIFY TOOL allows users to authenticate ownership of content published to the VERIFY’s Content Graph, where content is hashed and cryptographically signed, binding it to its verified owner.”