Summary of “How everything on the internet became clickbait”

Basically every news site covered the story – this Google News page that I archived is particularly horrifying – each putting their own tiny spin on it to keep it on-brand.
There truly is nothing new under the sun – not fake news; not Fox News repeating Donald Trump’s talking points back to him; not even Buzzfeed quizzes.
What has changed is people’s attitudes towards the news media: in 1973, the General Social Survey found that 14% of Americans had “Hardly any” confidence in the press; by 2016, that number was 50%. In All The News That’s Fit to Sell, Stanford Communications Professor James Hamilton provides a framework for why people consume news: the “Four D’s” of Duty, Diversion, Drama, and Display.
The scale of outlets has always had an important implication for people motivated by display: if you know that millions of other people are also watching Fox News – and in particular, the people you expect to actually encounter and have political conversations with – then you know that the news you hear about will be relevant to those conversations.
As the internet grew as a source of news, the number of separate firms appealing to smaller niches exploded.
The same people who were raised on Woodward and Bernstein were still in power, and they initially tried to replicate traditional newspapers online – just check out the front page of the New York Times website in 1996.
This “Information gap” clickbait headline was premised on attracting a readership primarily motivated by duty and diversion – people who want to be informed and entertained by the news.
New media cuts through the comparative advantage held by legacy media organizations by aiming directly for shares on social media; if you see that your friend posts a news story, you don’t need to look at the publisher to know if your friends have already approved of it.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The friend effect: why the secret of health and happiness is surprisingly simple”

This research is far from the first to suggest a link between eating with others and happiness.
Researchers at the University of Oxford last year found that the more that people eat with others, the more likely they are to feel happy and satisfied with their lives.
“The kinds of things that you do around the table with other people are very good at triggering the endorphin system, which is part of the brain’s pain-management system. Endorphins are opioids, they are chemically related to morphine – they are produced by the brain and give you an opiate high. That’s what you get when you do all this social stuff, including patting, cuddling and stroking. It is central to the way primates in general bond in their social groups and relationships.”
“You can eat as much as you like, you can slob about, you can drink as much alcohol as you like – the effect is very modest compared with these other two factors.”
One study from the University of Michigan found that replacing face-to-face contact with friends and family with messages on social media, emails or text messages could double our risk of depression.
“Homelessness and unemployment in particular takes us out of contact with others. In addition to the obvious harms of homelessness, it does massively increase social isolation and anxiety. To take that even further, many people are in exile from their communities. In mental health services, we see an enormous amount of grief, depression and anxiety in people who are asylum seekers and refugees and much of that is not just due to trauma or torture or detention or fleeing from their country, but from the severe rupture of being cut off from their families and communities of origin.”
As Gilbert says, the best relationships are the ones where people love us for our perceived dark sides and flaws.
Instead of texting a friend or messaging them on social media, why not knock on their door, look them in the eye and make yourselves both feel better?

The orginal article.

Summary of “NPR Choice page”

By choosing “I agree” below, you agree that NPR’s sites use cookies, similar tracking and storage technologies, and information about the device you use to access our sites to enhance your viewing, listening and user experience, personalize content, personalize messages from NPR’s sponsors, provide social media features, and analyze NPR’s traffic.
This information is shared with social media services, sponsorship, analytics and other third-party service providers.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The trouble with charitable billionaires”

In the CEO society, the exercise of social responsibilities is no longer debated in terms of whether corporations should or shouldn’t be responsible for more than their own business interests.
The increasingly public role taken by CEOs is related to a renewed corporate focus on their wider social responsibility.
There is a further economic incentive for CEOs to avoid making fundamental changes to their operations in the name of social justice, in that a large portion of CEO remuneration often consists of company stock and options.
Charitable activity permits CEOs to be philanthropic rather than economically progressive or politically democratic.
The trumpeting of the CEOs’ personal generosity can grant an implicit right for their corporations to act ruthlessly and with little consideration for the broader social effects of their activities.
The hypocrisy revealed by CEOs claiming to be dedicated to social responsibility and charity also exposes a deeper authoritarian morality that prevails in the CEO society.
As the heads of these corporations, CEOs are now quasi-politicians.
One only has to think of the increasing power of the World Economic Forum, whose annual meeting in Davos in Switzerland sees corporate CEOs and senior politicians getting together with the ostensible goal of “Improving the world”, a now time-honoured ritual that symbolises the global power and agency of CEOs.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Twitter Is Set Up to Reap Rewards from Harvesting Our Attention-And Moral Outrage Is a Big Part”

Billy Brady from NYU built on Berger and Milkman’s work by analyzing hundreds of thousands of tweets in an effort to understand the role of moral emotions-the feelings associated with our sense of right and wrong, like pride and outrage-in social networks.
In a recent article in Nature Human Behavior, Crockett argued that the constant triggering of moral outrage-an ancient emotion that motivates the shaming and punishing of others-on social media not only makes money for tech companies, but also alters how we experience and express the emotion.
What’s more, Crockett suggested that social media may uncouple the expression and experience of moral outrage.
“[J]ust as a habitual snacker eats without feeling hungry,” she wrote, “a habitual online shamer might express outrage without actually feeling outraged.” Studies on social media activity could illuminate, she concluded, “How new technologies might transform ancient social emotions from a force for collective good into a tool for collective self-destruction.”
Which raises the question: To what extent do social media companies have a moral obligation to improve the way we communicate with each other? Facebook C.E.O. Mark Zuckerberg is one of many tech executives who were once skeptical of their own power.
“And so if there is data that continues to come in that shows that social media is amplifying , then I think they do have a moral obligation.”
There are no easy solutions to any of these issues, perhaps because moral outrage online is a mixed bag.
At the same time, she continued, digital media may reduce moral outrage’s benefits for society by “Reducing the likelihood that norm-enforcing messages reach their targets” and possibly by imposing “New social costs by increasing polarization.” Until we find solutions, our moral emotions will remain subject to monetized technological forces that nobody fully understands.

The orginal article.

Summary of “is it because of the 50-year rage cycle?”

“People like you and me have wanted societies to be less violent and hierarchical and we have worked at that. We’ve never actually succeeded. We’ve managed to persuade people to take their foot off other people’s throats, when they felt secure enough.” Anger is remarkable not in and of itself, but when it becomes so widespread that it feels like the dominant cultural force.
The psychotherapeutic perspective would not reject these economic factors, nor argue that anger is a new phenomenon.
Aaron Balick, a psychotherapist and the author of a perceptive and surprisingly readable academic account, The Psychodynamics of Social Networking, says: “I think for sure anger is more expressed. What you see of it is a consequence of emotional contagion, which I think social media is partly responsible for. There’s an anger-bandwagon effect: someone expresses it and this drives someone else to express it as well.” Psychologically speaking, the important thing is not the emotion, but what you do with it; whether you vent, process or suppress it.
Thanks to Facebook, 15,000 people can get a righteous thrill of expressed rage.
Social media has given us a way to transmute that anger from the workplace – which often we do not have the power to change – to every other area of life.
To distinguish “Good” anger from “Bad” anger – indeed, to determine whether anything productive could come of a given spurt of rage – it is worth considering the purpose of anger.
“Its purpose is to maintain personal boundaries. So, if somebody crosses you, gets in your space, insults you, touches you, you’re going to get angry and the productive use of anger is to say: ‘Fuck off,'” Balick says.
Anger has a “Motivation of closeness”, which Herrera explains simply: “Normally, when we get angry, we show a natural tendency to get closer to what made us angry to try to eliminate it.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “The unexpected catharsis of an Instagram location page”

Bangkok is home, but that temple is where my heart is.
He tagged every location he visited, leaving behind breadcrumbs that would lead me to the temple’s location page on Instagram and filling a void I didn’t know existed.
Before my brother’s Instagram, I had never thought to search and explore the temple there.
Today, the location page is full of images of visitors touring all the corners of the temple grounds, one image or story at a time.
For as long as locals and tourists stopped by the temple, which is located near the popular bar area of Khao San Road, its Instagram location tag would always be populated by strangers who’ve unknowingly helped me visit him with every innocent click of the share button.
I think this is why it is difficult for me to quit Facebook or Instagram.
Still, for all the shallowness of social media’s mission to “Connect” people, we can’t deny that at the core, apps like Facebook and Instagram have intensified the way we find each other and discover ourselves.
I often wonder what he would have thought of Instagram if he was alive today.

The orginal article.

Summary of “What it’s like to be an introvert and what everyone gets wrong about them”

Being an introvert isn’t really anything to do with how much you like spending time with other people.
“So when you are out in a social environment that is very highly stimulating, what happens is that while the extrovert gets more and more incandescent and magnetic, the introvert starts shrinking and shrinking away.”
This means an introvert has a really busy mind worrying about what’s going to happen.
Basically, for an introvert an event is never just an event.
“You can be an extrovert and have social anxiety, or be painfully shy, or socially awkward. The difference is an introvert will tend to recharge on their own and an extrovert needs busy surroundings and busy situations in order to recharge.”
An introvert probably aims to get to know just two new people, but they will hope to foster the beginnings of a deep relationship.
“When you spend time having fun or resting in your introvert hangovers, you can accelerate your professional and personal growth,” Neo said.
“The more comfortable you are with telling people: ‘I have an introvert hangover; this is the time for myself. I’m blocking these chunks of time dedicated to me,’ the more you are able to own yourself as an introvert – rather than thinking there’s something wrong with you.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “Memes That Kill: The Future Of Information Warfare”

According to the university’s paper on the experiment, grafting audio clips onto a realistic, lip synched video can “Change what [Obama] appears to be saying in a target video to match the input audio track.”
It’s easy to imagine how such an altered video – if good enough to look authentic – could quickly wreak havoc, either in the US or abroad. Advances in AI are ushering in a new era of fake video and audio that will have profound effects on the future of diplomacy.
Then the system grafted and blended those mouth shapes onto an existing target video and adjusted timing to create a new realistic, lip-synced video.
Future iterations of the lip-synch tech being developed at UW are focused on using less data to generate the fake clips – going from 10 or more hours of video training data down to just one.
These tools will undoubtedly impact the future of diplomatic decision making: imagine a rash of fake videos muddying the waters during sensitive peace negotiations in a conflict-ridden part of the world.
Reputational manipulation involves the use of digital video and audio deceptions to attack a person’s reputation.
The lab uses Google Earth and the search engine Wolfram Alpha to cross-reference surroundings and weather conditions in videos to see if the video was captured under the conditions it claims.
Eulerian Video Magnification technology that can help spot AI-generated people in videos.

The orginal article.

Summary of “Young People Are Lonelier Than Their Elders”

Young People Are Lonelier Than Their Elders : Shots – Health News A nationwide survey by health insurer Cigna finds that loneliness is widespread in America.
Using one of the best-known tools for measuring loneliness – the UCLA Loneliness Scale – Cigna surveyed 20,000 adults online across the country.
People scoring 43 and above were considered lonely in the Cigna survey, with a higher score suggesting a greater level of loneliness and social isolation.
The survey found that the average loneliness score in America is 44, which suggests that “Most Americans are considered lonely,” according to the report released Tuesday by the health insurer.
The results are consistent with other previous research, says Julianne Holt-Lunstad, a psychologist at Brigham Young University, who studies loneliness and its health effects.
Several studies in recent years, including ones by Holt-Lunstad, have documented the public health effect of loneliness.
The Greatest Generation, people ages 72 and above, had a score of 38.6 on the loneliness scale.
The Cigna survey didn’t find a correlation between social media use and feelings of loneliness.

The orginal article.