WBEZ | twitter http://www.wbez.org/tags/twitter Latest from WBEZ Chicago Public Radio en 'Twitter's Dying' puts spotlight on the line between abuse and voice http://www.wbez.org/news/twitters-dying-puts-spotlight-line-between-abuse-and-voice-113440 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP_926307783813_0.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Twitter has been declared dead many times before.</p><p>Last year,&nbsp;The Atlantic&nbsp;published&nbsp;<a href="http://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2014/04/a-eulogy-for-twitter/361339/">&quot;A Eulogy for Twitter&quot;</a>&nbsp;&mdash; the latest of a string of similar proclamations, which in turn&nbsp;<a href="https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/style-blog/wp/2014/05/01/twitter-isnt-dying-it-died-in-2009/">spurred a wave</a>&nbsp;of response pieces, analysis pieces and think pieces.</p><p>So here we are again.</p><p>A&nbsp;<a href="https://medium.com/bad-words/why-twitter-s-dying-and-what-you-can-learn-from-it-9ed233e37974">lengthy essay</a>&nbsp;titled &quot;Why Twitter&#39;s Dying (And What You Can Learn From It)&quot; by author Umair Haque landed on Medium.com on Oct. 13. A week later, it&#39;s still one of the site&#39;s most popular posts.</p><p>Haque&#39;s key observation has certainly struck a chord: People are abusing the social Web and companies aren&#39;t doing enough to curb it. About Twitter in particular, he writes:</p><blockquote><div><p><em>&quot;We once glorified Twitter as a great global town square, a shining agora where everyone could come together to converse. But I&#39;ve never been to a town square where people can shove, push, taunt, bully, shout, harass, threaten, stalk, creep, and mob you...for eavesdropping on a conversation that they weren&#39;t a part of...to alleviate their own existential rage...at their shattered dreams...and&nbsp;you can&#39;t even call a cop. What does that particular social phenomenon sound like to you? Twitter&nbsp;could&nbsp;have been a town square. But now it&#39;s more like a drunken, heaving mosh pit.&quot;</em></p></div></blockquote><p>Indeed, the stories of Twitter shaming, pile-ons and trolling abound, and many have decided to&nbsp;<a href="https://www.google.com/webhp?sourceid=chrome-instant&amp;ion=1&amp;espv=2&amp;ie=UTF-8#q=why%20i%20left%20twitter">quit the site</a>. We&#39;ve all witnessed the Internet&#39;s power at spreading misinformation (<a href="http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2013/04/wrongly-accused-boston-bombing-suspects-sunil-tripathi.html">Boston bombing suspects</a>) or people being continuously harassed for posting something stupid and offensive (<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/15/magazine/how-one-stupid-tweet-ruined-justine-saccos-life.html">&quot;Just kidding. I&#39;m white!&quot;</a>), something politically or socially touchy (<a href="https://medium.com/message/dear-gun-enthusiasts-fe98c264d5d9">&quot;Texas Firearms/Fear Festival&quot;</a>), or for&nbsp;<a href="http://www.psmag.com/books-and-culture/well-yes-trolling-affect-women-men-88330">posting while female</a>. (And let&#39;s not forget the&nbsp;<a href="http://gawker.com/what-is-gamergate-and-why-an-explainer-for-non-geeks-1642909080">Gamergate controversy</a>.)</p><p>Is Twitter to blame? The site didn&#39;t invent the trolls and mean spirits, who have long hidden behind the anonymity of forums and comment sections of the Web. Yet Kathy Sierra, the victim of one of the most famous online harassment cases,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.wired.com/2014/10/trolls-will-always-win/">wrote this</a>&nbsp;about Twitter in&nbsp;Wired:</p><blockquote><div><p><em>&quot;I actually got off easy, then. Most of the master trolls weren&#39;t active on Twitter in 2007. Today, they, along with their friends, fans, followers, and a zoo of anonymous sock puppet accounts are. The time from troll-has-an-idea to troll-mobilizes-brutal-assault has shrunk from weeks to minutes. Twitter, for all its good, is a hate amplifier. Twitter boosts signal power with head-snapping speed and strength. Today, Twitter (and this isn&#39;t a complaint about Twitter, it&#39;s about what Twitter enables) is the troll&#39;s best weapon for attacking you.&quot;</em></p></div></blockquote><p>But let&#39;s start with the facts: Twitter is still growing. The company has hit a rough patch recently, flooded with the news of slipping shares, executive shakeup and layoffs. But its most recent&nbsp;<a href="http://files.shareholder.com/downloads/AMDA-2F526X/885805954x0x841610/5C4BB692-3414-4D28-AC9C-EF32B9E6D6D3/Q215_Selected_Company_Metrics_and_Financials.pdf">corporate results</a>&nbsp;show not a decline in users, but a slowdown in growth: Its worldwide base of monthly active users grew to 304 million at the end of June, from 302 million at the end of March and 288 million at the end of 2014.</p><p>And here&#39;s a notable element: The vast majority of those, 239 million, are not in the United States.</p><p>One of the commenters on Haque&#39;s piece, in fact,&nbsp;<a href="https://medium.com/@uncompromise/this-is-a-particularly-western-dare-i-say-us-centric-world-view-1d7bdf23020f">accused the author</a>&nbsp;of writing from a Western or even U.S.-centric perspective, which do not reflect the value that the social network plays overseas. (Haque&#39;s piece begins with an anecdotal analysis of Twitter&#39;s thinning ranks from Dupont Circle in Washington, Madison Square in New York City and a cafe in London.)</p><p>That same signal-boosting power of Twitter that helps trolls pile up on a victim has helped people organize for political protests around the world, including in places where Internet access is restricted. (Some recent high-profile examples include the Arab Spring, Ukraine&#39;s Euromaidan demonstrations, the Jasmine Revolution in Tunisia and Iran&#39;s 2009 election protests.)</p><p>In the United States, too, Twitter serves a cross-cultural audience: A&nbsp;<a href="http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/08/19/mobile-messaging-and-social-media-2015/2015-08-19_social-media-update_11/">study by the Pew Research Center</a>&nbsp;this year found that 1 in 5 white Internet users are on Twitter, while 28 percent of black and Hispanic Internet users are on the site.</p><p style="text-align: center;"><a href="http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/08/19/mobile-messaging-and-social-media-2015/2015-08-19_social-media-update_11/"><img alt="Twitter Demographics" class="attachment-large" height="511" src="http://www.pewinternet.org/files/2015/08/2015-08-19_social-media-update_11.png" width="309" /></a></p><p>And the public nature of Twitter (in contrast to Facebook&#39;s largely &quot;friend&quot;-based networking) has often amplified diverse voices in transformative ways. (The&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/2015/07/08/421083610/-los-angeles-times-recognizes-the-relevancy-of-black-twitter">powerful Black Twitter</a>&nbsp;keeping a spotlight on police misconduct,&nbsp;The New York Times&nbsp;putting the #IfTheyGunnedMeDown&nbsp;<a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2014/08/13/us/if-they-gunned-me-down-protest-on-twitter.html">story on the front page</a>, the White House&nbsp;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2015/10/20/450208945/clock-making-texas-teen-visits-white-house-for-astronomy-night">inviting for a visit</a>&nbsp;the Texas teenager who was arrested after bringing a homemade clock to school).</p><p>Social networks have also allowed people to rally against or in support of positions taken by celebrities and companies, and directly communicate with them or call them out on insensitivity. (See: Benedict Cumberbatch&nbsp;<a href="http://www.people.com/article/benedict-cumberbatch-black-actors-opportunities?xid=socialflow_twitter_peoplemag">apologizing for</a>&nbsp;the &quot;colored actors&quot; comment, Target&#39;s&nbsp;<a href="http://mashable.com/2015/08/10/target-gender-signs/#uktXlB5TGaqJ">gender-neutral toys</a>,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.adweek.com/prnewser/kenneth-coles-twitter-fail/15371?red=pr">Kenneth Cole&#39;s</a>&nbsp;&quot;uproar in Cairo...new spring collection&quot; and&nbsp;<a href="http://www.adweek.com/adfreak/digiorno-really-really-sorry-about-its-tweet-accidentally-making-light-domestic-violence-159998">DiGiorno Pizza&#39;s&nbsp;</a>domestic violence &amp; pizza improper hashtag responses.)</p><p>Haque defines abuse as broader than violent threats, to also include &quot;endless bickering, the predictable snark, the general atmosphere of little violences that permeate the social web...and the fact that the average person can&#39;t do&nbsp;anything&nbsp;about it.&quot;</p><p>The importance of retribution in cases of online harassment, beyond blocking or ignoring, is hard to overstate. But as with many cases of online speech, one man&#39;s bickering and snark is another man&#39;s freedom and dialogue:</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Twitter stands for freedom of expression. We stand for speaking truth to power. And we stand for empowering dialogue.</p>&mdash; Jack (@jack) <a href="https://twitter.com/jack/status/651003891153108997">October 5, 2015</a></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p><p>&mdash; <a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2015/10/20/449977694/twitters-dying-puts-spotlight-on-the-line-between-abuse-and-voice?ft=nprml&amp;f=449977694"><em>via NPR</em></a></p></p> Tue, 20 Oct 2015 16:51:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/twitters-dying-puts-spotlight-line-between-abuse-and-voice-113440 Twitter's suspension of sports media revives debate over fair use http://www.wbez.org/news/twitters-suspension-sports-media-revives-debate-over-fair-use-113333 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP_926307783813.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Football&#39;s popularity has made it among the most lucrative business franchises. So it should come as no surprise that the NFL and other organizations holding the broadcasting rights to games felt very strongly about Deadspin and SB Nation, popular sports publications, attracting readers by posting highlights on Twitter.</p><p>What came next were complaints of copyright violations. Then came Twitter&#39;s suspension of the accounts. Now comes the question: Do GIFs of sports highlights qualify as fair use?</p><p>Parker Higgins, director of copyright activism at civil liberties non-profit Electronic Frontier Foundation, says that may be the case.</p><p>&quot;It&#39;s a very small portion of the original,&quot; he says. &quot;It&#39;s in a different context, because there&#39;s no sound. It&#39;s not surrounded by game footage. It does seem like some of these could be fair use.&quot;</p><p>Fair use, or &quot;fair dealing&quot; as it&#39;s known in other countries, allows people to reproduce copyrighted material for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching or research. The&nbsp;<a href="https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/17/107">U.S. test for fair use</a>&nbsp;involves four steps that evaluate:</p><ol><li>the purposes of the use (is it commercial?),</li><li>the nature of the copyrighted work,</li><li>how big of a portion is being reproduced,</li><li>and how the reproduction will impact the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.</li></ol><p>Disputed uses are often settled in court, and Twitter&#39;s&nbsp;<a href="https://support.twitter.com/articles/20171959">own policies say</a>&nbsp;fair use cases are determined on a case-by-case basis. Its&nbsp;<a href="https://transparency.twitter.com/copyright-notices/2015/jan-jun">transparency reports show</a>&nbsp;that in the majority of the cases, the company does remove material from its website.</p><p>In the instance of complaints from the NFL, the Southeastern Conference, the Big 12 Conference and the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Deadspin&#39;s Twitter account was quickly restored, while the&nbsp;<a href="http://twitter.com/SBNationGIF">SBNationGIF</a>&nbsp;account remained suspended as of Tuesday evening.</p><p>Vox Media, which owns SB Nation, says it&#39;s working with Twitter to resolve the issues. Vox&#39;s statement also said the company always tries to &quot;keep our use of unlicensed third party footage within the bounds of fair use.&quot;</p><p>Both publications should have known better, says Forrester Research analyst (and football fan) Nate Elliott.</p><p>&quot;I don&#39;t know if it&#39;s the exact wording, but if you&#39;re like me, every Sunday at least twice you heard, &#39;Images, pictures and descriptions may not be used without the express written consent of the National Football League,&#39; &quot; Elliot says.</p><p>Nu Wexler, a Twitter spokesman, says the company does not comment on individual accounts, though he shared links to the individual complaints involved, which have now been posted in the&nbsp;<a href="https://www.chillingeffects.org/">Chilling Effects database</a>&nbsp;that tracks requests to remove online content.</p><p>The media companies theoretically could dispute the sports organizations&#39; complaints. Deadspin&#39;s owners at Gawker Media don&#39;t plan to sue the NFL &quot;at this time,&quot; says acting executive editor John Cook, and adds:</p><p>&quot;But its contempt for its fans&mdash;and Twitter&#39;s contempt for its users&mdash;is baffling to us.&quot;</p><p>&mdash;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/alltechconsidered/2015/10/13/448378976/twitters-suspension-of-sports-media-revives-debate-over-fair-use?ft=nprml&amp;f=448378976" target="_blank"><em> via NPR</em></a></p></p> Tue, 13 Oct 2015 09:59:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/twitters-suspension-sports-media-revives-debate-over-fair-use-113333 Snowden's Twitter account could put domestic surveillance back on the radar http://www.wbez.org/news/snowdens-twitter-account-could-put-domestic-surveillance-back-radar-113113 <p><p>Twitter&#39;s newest high-profile user just might push the issue of domestic surveillance back into the presidential campaign&#39;s conversation.</p><p>Edward Snowden sent his first-ever tweet at noon on Tuesday, asking, &quot;Can you hear me now?&quot;</p><p>One Republican candidate clearly did. Within the hour, former New York Gov. George Pataki had retweeted the NSA whistleblower, calling him &quot;a traitor who put American lives at risk.&quot;</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Some say you have courage, I saw real courage on <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/Sept11?src=hash">#Sept11</a> You are just a traitor who put American lives at risk. <a href="https://t.co/RRWtmMzyxE">https://t.co/RRWtmMzyxE</a></p>&mdash; George E. Pataki (@GovernorPataki) <a href="https://twitter.com/GovernorPataki/status/648895670980583424">September 29, 2015</a></blockquote><div>It could have just been an attempt to generate buzz by Pataki, who is struggling for traction in the polls. A new study by George Washington University&#39;s Graduate School of Political Management and Zignal Labs found that Pataki commanded just 0.2 percent of social media&#39;s political conversation this summer.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>But it&#39;s already clear that Twitter will provide Snowden an enormous platform, should he decide to wade into the campaign&#39;s policy debates from Moscow. Within four hours of his first tweet, Snowden had amassed 400,000 followers.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><p><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Snowden.jpg" style="height: 169px; width: 300px; margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; float: right;" title="A frame grab made from AFPTV footage Edward Snowden speaking in an unidentified location in October 2013. (AFP/AFP/Getty Images)" /></p><div>Snowden&#39;s revelations about the National Security Agency&#39;s vast web of domestic surveillance made international headlines in 2013. But until now, the issue has largely been dormant in the presidential campaign.</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div>One notable exception: an intense back-and-forth between Kentucky Sen. Rand Paul and New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie during the first Republican presidential debate that ended with Paul repeatedly yelling, &quot;get a warrant!&quot; as Christie called the Senator&#39;s NSA opposition &quot;completely ridiculous.&quot;</div><div>&nbsp;</div><div style="text-align: center;"><iframe allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/OKkJ-K8qPXo?rel=0" width="560"></iframe></div><div>&nbsp;</div><div><p>&quot;It seems to me that domestic surveillance has totally fallen off the radar,&quot; said Stephen Vladeck, an American University law professor who edits a national security blog called &quot;Just Security. &quot;I find that both disappointing and surprising.&quot;</p><p>Vladeck said increased attention on the fight against ISIS is partially to blame, as Republican candidates have focused on out-flanking each other, when it comes to aggressive foreign policy platforms.</p><p>&quot;I would have thought that, especially in this Republican primary field, surveillance especially but a whole host of national security issues, in general, would have been fat fodder. What can Congress do about ISIS? What can Congress do about surveillance reform ... Guantanamo?&quot;</p><p>Vladeck recently posted&nbsp;<a href="https://www.justsecurity.org/26278/national-security-questions-presidential-candidates-answer/">six potential debate questions</a>&nbsp;about national security issues, including what candidates would plan on doing when a key portion of the USA Freedom Act expires in 2017.</p><p>But, as much as Vladeck is hoping for a high-profile debate about domestic surveillance, he doesn&#39;t think Edward Snowden&#39;s Twitter account is the thing to kick-start it. &quot;Snowden started this conversation. I don&#39;t think he&#39;s the best conduit for this conversation.&quot;</p><p>&quot;Too many folks have too strong of feelings about him personally,&quot; he added. &quot;I think he&#39;s an important figure, but I don&#39;t think this conversation is going to be led by him.&quot;</p><p style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/Snowden%20%282%29.jpg" style="margin-left: 10px; margin-right: 10px; height: 405px; width: 600px;" title=" In this Feb. 14, 2015 file photo, Edward Snowden appears on a live video feed broadcast from Moscow at an event sponsored by ACLU Hawaii in Honolulu. The former National Security Agency worker, who leaked classified documents about government surveillance, started tweeting Tuesday, Sept. 29, 2015. (AP Photo/Marco Garcia, File)" /></p><p>Regardless, the Twitter community took notice. Here&#39;s a Twitter-produced gif of where in the world people responded to or tweeted about Snowden&#39;s new account:</p></div><div><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p dir="ltr" lang="en">Today <a href="https://twitter.com/Snowden">@Snowden</a> joined Twitter, and here&#39;s the world&#39;s response. <a href="http://t.co/d6HgVvdRsf">pic.twitter.com/d6HgVvdRsf</a></p>&mdash; Twitter (@twitter) <a href="https://twitter.com/twitter/status/648938950812274688">September 29, 2015</a></blockquote></div><p>And it appears that Snowden will be bringing a sense of humor to the social media platform. So far he&#39;s only following one account: the NSA&#39;s.&nbsp;</p><p>&mdash;<a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2015/09/29/444531467/snowdens-twitter-account-could-put-domestic-surveillance-back-on-the-radar?ft=nprml&amp;f=444531467"><em> via NPR&#39;s </em></a><em><a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2015/09/29/444531467/snowdens-twitter-account-could-put-domestic-surveillance-back-on-the-radar?ft=nprml&amp;f=444531467">It&#39;s</a></em><a href="http://www.npr.org/sections/itsallpolitics/2015/09/29/444531467/snowdens-twitter-account-could-put-domestic-surveillance-back-on-the-radar?ft=nprml&amp;f=444531467"><em> All Politics</em></a></p></p> Tue, 29 Sep 2015 15:35:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/snowdens-twitter-account-could-put-domestic-surveillance-back-radar-113113 Chicago girl receives threat for aiding Syrian protesters with social media http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/chicago-girl-receives-threat-aiding-syrian-protesters-social-media-112832 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/StoryCorps 150904 Alaa bh.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>When Alaa Basatneh was six months old her parents moved from Syria to Chicago. Alaa went to school here but always paid close attention to news from the Middle East. In 2010 what became known as &ldquo;The Arab Spring&rdquo; transformed the region, and Alaa watched closely. She was only&nbsp;nineteen years old and living in the United States, but as Alaa tells her friend Zainab Khan, she&nbsp;felt she had to get involved.</p><p><em>StoryCorps&rsquo; mission is to provide Americans of all backgrounds and beliefs with the opportunity to share, record and preserve their stories. These excerpts, edited by WBEZ, present some of our favorites from the current visit, as well as from previous trips.</em></p></p> Thu, 03 Sep 2015 09:18:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/series/storycorps/chicago-girl-receives-threat-aiding-syrian-protesters-social-media-112832 The digital afterlife http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2014-10-31/digital-afterlife-111035 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Beersheba_War_Cemetery.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The world has changed more in the past 10 years than in the previous 500.</p><p>It used to be that when mankind stopped wandering and settled down with a desire to own property and things, laws or wars were required to settle disputes.</p><p>Property was easy to manage, because it was mostly physical. Land, papers, livestock and personal belongings. Today our music, pictures, books, movies, financial information and medical records are digital, and managing property has become exceedingly complex.</p><p>Somewhere along the way fiduciaries were created, people whose job it was to represent the best interests of those who were either dead or incapacitated. Into their hands, the law gave access to property and things that might be stored on that property or in other places.</p><p>People began to plan their estates and create orders for their handpicked fiduciaries to carry out upon their death. In this way, property passed from one person to another in a more or less peaceful and orderly fashion.</p><p>While most people still have physical properties like homes or cars or businesses, many people have developed digital assets that are increasingly valuable.</p><p>Online banking, insurance, forms filled out for the department of motor vehicles, medical records, credit cards and almost every aspect of our lives is digitized today.</p><p>We have tens if not hundreds of passwords to access our digital lives. And we have the cloud.</p><p>Because the World Wide Web is only 25 years old, we don&rsquo;t have much of a plan for how to pass along our digital property.</p><p>One big difference is that until recently, individuals owned and controlled their physical property, because it was mostly in a physical space where people could go and collect it. In the digital age, for the most part, they still own and control their physical property, but it&rsquo;s often maintained by a third party like your photos on Facebook or your online bank records or your investment portfolio.</p><p>There are three things you need to know about your digital life if you are thinking about how to preserve it should you become incapacitated or die.</p><p><strong>The Fiduciary System</strong></p><p>The age-old fiduciary system still is strongly in place. If you draw up a will and name a fiduciary to handle your business, the courts of law will honor this.</p><p>The problem with fiduciaries is that they can often access your physical property and records without too much trouble, but they might not be able to access your digital property.</p><p>This is because each state has different laws governing digital assets, if they have laws at all, and companies like <a href="https://info.yahoo.com/legal/us/yahoo/utos/utos-173.html">Yahoo</a>, <a href="https://support.google.com/mail/answer/14300?hl=en">Google</a>, <a href="https://www.facebook.com/help/150486848354038">Facebook</a>, <a href="https://support.twitter.com/groups/33-report-a-violation/topics/122-reporting-violations/articles/87894-how-to-contact-twitter-about-a-deceased-user#">Twitter </a>and many others like banks or even government agencies have very few policies detailing how loved ones or even fiduciaries can get access to a deceased or incapacitated person&rsquo;s account. And with no overarching law to govern them, it&rsquo;s kind of like the wild west out there.</p><p>That was until the <a href="http://www.uniformlaws.org/Committee.aspx?title=Fiduciary+Access+to+Digital+Assets">Uniform Fiduciary Access to Digital Assets Act</a> was created last summer.</p><p>&ldquo;What the new law does is it extends the old law of fiduciary access to allow people to manage someone else&#39;s property and it extends it to digital assets which are now online,&rdquo; Ben Orzeske, legislative council for the Uniform Law Commission said.</p><p>If you put in your will how you would like your digital assets handled upon your death or incapacitation, UFADDA, as the law has come to be called, should help insure that your digital assets become accessible to your fiduciary.</p><p>This is if you live in Delaware, of course.</p><p>For now, it&rsquo;s the first and only state to have adopted UFADDA.</p><p>Because the uniform legislation was created and approved this summer and most legislative sessions in most states won&rsquo;t begin again until January of 2015, the law hasn&rsquo;t had a chance to circulate widely.</p><p>Legal experts say that the most effective way to handle your digital assets is to include them in your will, so even without UFADDA firmly in place in all 50 states, you&rsquo;re more likely to secure your digital belongings if you include information about them in a will.</p><p><strong>Digital Death Services</strong></p><p>Like digital undertakers, a new type of service is emerging as people using social media pass away. As of 2012, there were upwards of <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/07/death-facebook-dead-profiles_n_2245397.html">30 million accounts of dead people</a> on Facebook alone. And <a href="http://blogs.mcafee.com/consumer/digital-assets">a recent study estimates</a> our digital assets average about $34,000 in value, which creates the impetus for entrepreneurs to provide the kind of help that can make it easy to manage your digital estate upon your passing or incapacitation.</p><p>Companies like <a href="https://www.afternote.com/">Afternote</a>, <a href="http://www.b-emortal.com/">b-eMortal</a> and <a href="https://www.deadmansswitch.net/">Dead Man&rsquo;s Switch</a> offer users a way to do everything from distribute their digital assets to providing access by sending emails posthumously. <a href="http://www.thedigitalbeyond.com/online-services-list/">This is a pretty comprehensive list</a> of digital death services, but none of them are the complete package, and few will provide the kind of peace of mind that legally documenting your digital assets in a will could provide.</p><p><strong>Password Management</strong></p><p>The simplest solution to the problem of what happens to your digital life once you die is to just give someone you trust access to your passwords.</p><p>&ldquo;Estate planning experts say the most important thing you can do, if you don&rsquo;t have a will, is just to have a list of your accounts and your usernames and passwords in some secure place, whether that be online or offline or wherever and to let someone that you trust know about it.&rdquo; Maeve Duggan, a research analyst with Pew Research Center, said.</p><p>Password management systems can be a useful way keep your digital assets protected while at the same time creating the peace of mind in knowing that someone other than you, whom you trust, can access your information should something happen to you.</p><p>Some of the best password management systems are <a href="https://agilebits.com/onepassword">1Password</a>, <a href="https://keepersecurity.com/">Keeper</a>, <a href="http://www.roboform.com/">RoboForm</a>, <a href="https://msevensoftware.com/msecure_ios">MSecure</a>, <a href="https://www.dashlane.com/">Dashlane</a>, <a href="https://www.passwordbox.com/">PasswordBox</a> and <a href="https://lastpass.com/">LastPass</a>. There are many others with too many features to mention, but they offer a good way to control where you digital assets go if you don&rsquo;t want to provide those instructions in a will.</p><p>Whatever way you choose to preserve your digital assets for those who come after you, you might want to consider your priorities.</p><p>&ldquo;I kind of see online assets as falling into two general categories,&rdquo; Maeve Duggan said. &ldquo;The first has a really practical or financial value. Stuff like your online bank accounts, any medical records, insurance documents, loans. The second is the sentimental, nostalgic kinds of things. Photos, music, certain emails. But I will say that it depends on which you think is more important to prioritize.&rdquo;</p><p><em><a href="http://www.wbez.org/users/takimoff" rel="author">Tim Akimoff</a> is the Director of Digital Content at WBEZ. You can follow him on <a href="https://twitter.com/timakimoff"> Twitter</a> and <a href="https://www.facebook.com/timakimoff"> Facebook. </a></em></p><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 31 Oct 2014 11:58:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/afternoon-shift/2014-10-31/digital-afterlife-111035 Iraq's new government http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-09-10/iraqs-new-government-110778 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/AP840324389257.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>The Iraqi government has formed a new coalition. We&#39;ll take a look at who&#39;s in it and how this will affect U.S. policy in the region.</p><div class="storify"><iframe allowtransparency="true" frameborder="no" height="750" src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-iraq-s-new-government/embed?header=false&amp;border=false" width="100%"></iframe><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-iraq-s-new-government.js?header=false&border=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/worldview-iraq-s-new-government" target="_blank">View the story "Worldview: Iraq's new government" on Storify</a>]</noscript></div></p> Wed, 10 Sep 2014 12:05:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/worldview/2014-09-10/iraqs-new-government-110778 How prominent Chicagoans handled their first tweet http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/how-prominent-chicagoans-handled-their-first-tweet-109900 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/firsttweet.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>Today is Twitter&#39;s 8th birthday, marked by the first tweet ever sent, a short introduction from Chairman Jack Dorsey at 3:50 p.m. on March 21, 2006.</p><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>just setting up my twttr</p>&mdash; Jack Dorsey (@jack) <a href="https://twitter.com/jack/statuses/20">March 21, 2006</a></blockquote><script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><p>Since that first tweet Twitter has amassed more than 600 million users, with 240 million active every month.</p><p>To celebrate its beginning, Twitter launched a tool Thursday that lets all its users do the same thing by <a href="https://discover.twitter.com/first-tweet">looking up their first tweets</a>. Since then the social network has been flooded with digital nostalgia as users reflect on their first interaction with what has become a major part of communication on the Internet.</p><p>We wanted to take a look at how prominent Chicagoans used their first tweet, so we put together a list of the biggest names and other interesting accounts. Let us know if there&#39;s anyone you think we should add</p><h3>Big Names</h3><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Thinking we&#39;re only one signature away from ending the war in Iraq. Learn more at http://www.barackobama.com</p>&mdash; Barack Obama (@BarackObama) <a href="https://twitter.com/BarackObama/statuses/44240662">April 29, 2007</a></blockquote><script async src="//platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>HI TWITTERS . THANK YOU FOR A WARM WELCOME. FEELING REALLY 21st CENTURY .</p>&mdash; Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) <a href="https://twitter.com/Oprah/statuses/1542224596">April 17, 2009</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Attention sneaker fiends, future legends and fans of the game: the official Twitter for Jordan is now live.</p>&mdash; Jordan (@Jumpman23) <a href="https://twitter.com/Jumpman23/statuses/27874665743">October 19, 2010</a></blockquote><script async src="https://platform.twitter.com/widgets.js" charset="utf-8"></script><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>One of the surprises you get when growing older is that the people you knew when you were young are young forever</p>&mdash; Roger Ebert (@ebertchicago) <a href="https://twitter.com/ebertchicago/statuses/4608482314">October 4, 2009</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>NEW SONG AND VISUAL FROM MY NEW ALBUM BEING PROJECTED TONIGHT ACROSS THE GLOBE ON 66 BUILDINGS, LOCATIONS @ <a href="http://t.co/7BZwfPawwZ">http://t.co/7BZwfPawwZ</a></p>&mdash; KANYE WEST (@kanyewest) <a href="https://twitter.com/kanyewest/statuses/335569132214972416">May 18, 2013</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>GOD IS GREAT!</p>&mdash; Billy Corgan (@Billy) <a href="https://twitter.com/Billy/statuses/1529035061">April 15, 2009</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p><a href="https://twitter.com/search?q=%23aye&amp;src=hash">#aye</a> aye watchu say WATCHU Think I SAY !</p>&mdash; AlmightySo (@ChiefKeef) <a href="https://twitter.com/ChiefKeef/statuses/16339561136">June 16, 2010</a></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p><h3>The Machine</h3><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>The new City of Chicago website launched today. Visit www.cityofchicago.org and let us know what you think.</p>&mdash; Richard M. Daley (@MayorDaley) <a href="https://twitter.com/MayorDaley/statuses/10384380367">March 12, 2010</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Ready to tell it like it is? Welcome to the official Chicago for Rahm twitterfeed!</p>&mdash; Rahm Emanuel (@RahmEmanuel) <a href="https://twitter.com/RahmEmanuel/statuses/26591737245">October 6, 2010</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Wait for it....getting the house in order...</p>&mdash; ChicagosMayor (@ChicagosMayor) <a href="https://twitter.com/ChicagosMayor/statuses/76670258823438336">June 3, 2011</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>An official announcement from the CTA: Hello.</p>&mdash; cta (@cta) <a href="https://twitter.com/cta/statuses/131399950058786816">November 1, 2011</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Traffic alert: On July 3-4, the City anticipates closing several downtown streets, as conditions warrant. Public transit is recommended.</p>&mdash; CDOT (@ChicagoDOT) <a href="https://twitter.com/ChicagoDOT/statuses/2443171909">July 2, 2009</a></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p><h3>The Media</h3><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>This is the unofficial Twitter account for the Chicago Tribune newspaper. Follow me for your daily dose of news!</p>&mdash; Chicago Tribune (@chicagotribune) <a href="https://twitter.com/chicagotribune/statuses/138936822">July 7, 2007</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>A man is facing jail after admitting he stole 1,613 pairs of panties and bras from laundry rooms. http://tinyurl.com/yu38o9</p>&mdash; Chicago Sun-Times (@Suntimes) <a href="https://twitter.com/Suntimes/statuses/656068932">January 29, 2008</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Reform is in the air at City Hall. So is bullshit. http://tinyurl.com/cpy5v8</p>&mdash; Mick Dumke (@mickeyd1971) <a href="https://twitter.com/mickeyd1971/statuses/1309013571">March 11, 2009</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Do you know what Chicago neighborhood you&#39;re in? Don&#39;t believe the Realtors. Read Konkol&#39;s Korner in the Sun-Times. http://tiny.cc/qSoTt</p>&mdash; Mark Konkol (@Konkolskorner) <a href="https://twitter.com/Konkolskorner/statuses/6813694197">December 19, 2009</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Tweet #1. A new post on the WGNtv.com weather blog about some of the T-Storms headed our way &amp; 90 deg temps? http://tinyurl.com/weatherblog</p>&mdash; Skilling (@Skilling) <a href="https://twitter.com/Skilling/statuses/2552095891">July 9, 2009</a></blockquote><h3>&nbsp;</h3><h3>From WBEZ</h3><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>This twitter feed will deliver all stories produced by the WBEZ news team, as well as special programming announcements and breaking news.</p>&mdash; WBEZ (@WBEZ) <a href="https://twitter.com/WBEZ/statuses/766752291">March 4, 2008</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>is finally here! Will this take up all of my time?</p>&mdash; Niala (@NialaBoodhoo) <a href="https://twitter.com/NialaBoodhoo/statuses/1131600348">January 19, 2009</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>listening to Andrew&#39;s shared i-tunes. No rap.</p>&mdash; JustinKaufmann (@JustinKaufmann) <a href="https://twitter.com/JustinKaufmann/statuses/868444247">July 25, 2008</a></blockquote><blockquote class="twitter-tweet" lang="en"><p>Have joined Twitter, just because somebody told me to.</p>&mdash; Peter Sagal (@petersagal) <a href="https://twitter.com/petersagal/statuses/825474818">June 2, 2008</a></blockquote><p>&nbsp;</p></p> Fri, 21 Mar 2014 09:45:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/news/culture/how-prominent-chicagoans-handled-their-first-tweet-109900 Twitter, fandom, and why ABC's 'Scandal' matters http://www.wbez.org/blogs/britt-julious/2013-10/twitter-fandom-and-why-abcs-scandal-matters-108838 <p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/551127_688902614472857_511757039_n.jpg" style="height: 414px; width: 620px;" title="(Facebook/Scandal)" /></div><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">The stigma of Shonda Rhimes&rsquo; shows are not unfounded. Now entering its 10th season, <em>Grey&rsquo;s Anatomy</em> has emerged as a constant, if not deeply flawed television show. Although most television shows require a level of implausibility for the sake of plot, <em>Grey&rsquo;s Anatomy</em> jumped the shark numerous times to settle into its role of over-the-top drama.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">But for a show like <em>Scandal</em>, the over-the-top drama works. Set in the highest Washington, D.C. political circles, the more ridiculous <em>Scandal</em> becomes, the more entertaining it becomes for its viewer. <em>Scandal</em> has thus far succeeded by emphasizing its strengths. Its stellar cast keeps the plotlines safe from devolving into utter madness. As &ldquo;fixer&rdquo; Olivia Pope, Kerry Washington is a more than capable lead, inducing both envy and frustration in her show&rsquo;s viewers.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">More than anything, <em>Scandal</em>&rsquo;s near-perfect formula of intrigue, sex, and crazy has created and sustained a community of fans that are dedicated to the show&rsquo;s plot and the show&rsquo;s success.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">There is nothing greater in television watching right now than live tweeting with other <em>Scandal</em> fans.&nbsp;</span>Last night I&nbsp;<a href="https://twitter.com/britticisms/status/385596526140997632" target="_blank">joked</a>&nbsp;that the return of&nbsp;<em>Scandal</em>&nbsp;was a return to the &ldquo;Black Girl Twitter&rdquo; community I loved so deeply. Without provocation, we all began watching and talking about the show as it aired. My timeline explodes with chatter about the show, its characters, the clothing, and the music as it airs.</p><p dir="ltr"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1238890_680036928692759_691831075_n.jpg" style="height: 207px; width: 310px; float: left;" title="(Facebook/Scandal)" /><a href="http://www.pewinternet.org/Presentations/2009/44--Twitter-and-status-updating.aspx" target="_blank">According</a> to a 2009 study from the Pew Research Center&rsquo;s <a href="http://www.pewinternet.org/Reports/2009/17-Twitter-and-Status-Updating-Fall-2009.aspx">Pew Internet and American Life Project</a>, Twitter users are more likely to be African-American women. As well, <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/17/arts/television/scandal-on-abc-is-breaking-barriers.html?pagewanted=1&amp;%2359;adxnnlx=1358514825-5e%20djvuRuiG14b3JjZiqVg&amp;%2359&amp;_r=1&amp;%2359;adxnnl=1&amp;pagewanted=all&amp;" target="_blank">according to a report from the <em>New York Times</em></a> of Nielsen ratings, &ldquo;<em>Scandal</em> is the highest rated scripted drama among African-Americans, with 10.1 percent of black households, or an average of 1.8 million viewers, tuning in during the first half of the season.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34"><em>Scandal</em> premiered as the first television drama starring a black woman in nearly 40 years. Two years after its premiere, the television landscape is minisculely better. Earlier this year, NBC premiered (and quickly canceled) the drama <em>Deception</em>, starring Meagan Good. The show included similar themes to <em>Scandal</em> (revenge, secrets, affairs), but suffered due to a poor time slot and an even poorer narrative structure.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">Still, <em>Deception</em> was an early sign that broadcast networks are making small strides in creating television shows that feature and cater to more diverse audiences. Successes breed copies. Successes breed trends.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">Earlier this fall, FOX premiered <em>Sleepy Hollow</em>, a supernatural thriller starring Nicole Beharie. If her character&rsquo;s race was needed specifically for the plot remains to be seen. As it stands, this is the third drama on a major network to star a black woman in the past two years. Whereas we waited 40 years for <em>Scandal</em>, audiences now only had to wait a summer hiatus for additional diversity on their screens.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">If a trend is now &ldquo;black female lead,&rdquo; it can potentially lead to the sort of television landscape that is sorely needed. However, if the trend proves unsuccessful, there could be a backlash, a desire to not include diversity on upcoming shows as it has proven (just once) to be unsuccessful.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">&ldquo;<em>Scandal</em> this week!&rdquo; my aunt exclaimed at the dinner table this past Sunday. There sat three generations of black women and each was as duly invested in the show as the other. We all loved it for different reasons.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">My mother and aunt love the plot, but love the troubled and troubling romance between President Fitzgerald Grant and Olivia more than anything. My grandmother invested time in it like other dramas and soap operas she loves (Tyler Perry&rsquo;s <em>The Haves and The Have Nots</em> being her favorite). For me, <em>Scandal</em> is all about the plot twists and Olivia. Each new episode is a moment to watch history unfold. From the beginning, <em>Scandal</em> felt capital &lsquo;I&rsquo; Important and I invested time in it because of that.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">In an interview for the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/17/arts/television/scandal-on-abc-is-breaking-barriers.html?pagewanted=1&amp;%2359;adxnnlx=1358514825-5e%20djvuRuiG14b3JjZiqVg&amp;%2359&amp;_r=1&amp;%2359;adxnnl=1&amp;pagewanted=all&amp;" target="_blank"><em>New York Times</em></a>, author Joan Morgan said, &ldquo;</span>It&rsquo;s about seeing the show where black women and other women are represented less about race and more about who they are.&rdquo;</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-29fcfb70-7e9e-2bb4-96da-46e34161db34">Olivia Pope matters. On a show as ballsy and enthralling as <em>Scandal</em>, Olivia is the constant that keeps the show grounded in reality. With Olivia, we find a lead who is at once strong, vulnerable, and multifaceted. And although that means a lot to black female fans, it can and does mean a lot to <em>Scandal</em>&rsquo;s audience in general. </span></p><p>Hollywood is not merely a system of numbers. It is a system, period. It works through formulas and avoids risks. Audiences certainly suffer for this system, but when the system succeeds, there is little stopping executives from making the same decision, over and over again, wishing for the same results. When it comes to diversity, one can only hope that Hollywood finds this formula a lasting one.</p><p><em>Britt Julious is the co-host of&nbsp;<a href="https://soundcloud.com/wbezs-changing-channels" target="_blank">WBEZ&#39;s Changing Channels</a>, a podcast about the future of television. She also writes about race and culture in and outside of Chicago. Follow Britt&#39;s essays for&nbsp;<a href="http://wbez.tumblr.com/" target="_blank">WBEZ&#39;s Tumblr</a>&nbsp;or on Twitter&nbsp;<a href="http://twitter.com/britticisms" target="_blank">@britticisms</a>.</em></p></p> Thu, 03 Oct 2013 11:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/britt-julious/2013-10/twitter-fandom-and-why-abcs-scandal-matters-108838 For television, Twitter is the new live water cooler conversation http://www.wbez.org/blogs/britt-julious/2013-08/television-twitter-new-live-water-cooler-conversation-108332 <p><div class="image-insert-image " style="text-align: center;"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/1017181_141685442694900_462625651_n.jpg" style="width: 600px;" title="(Facebook/Orange is the New Black)" /></div><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb">The only thing busier than my Twitter timeline during a live airing of MTV&rsquo;s &quot;Catfish&quot; is my Twitter timeline during a live airing of ABC&rsquo;s &quot;Scandal.&quot; Both shows illicit the sort of rabid fan response that can turn outsiders into insiders. </span></p><p dir="ltr">The same thing also recently happened with the release of Netflix&rsquo;s &quot;Orange is the New Black.&quot; Despite breaking the format of traditional network television by releasing a complete season at once, for a few days after, #OITNB was a trending topic.</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb">Not every show can create this sort of fire. Nielsen recently released a study called <a href="http://www.nielsen.com/us/en/newswire/2013/the-follow-back--understanding-the-two-way-causal-influence-betw.html">&ldquo;The Follow-Back&rdquo;</a> that analyzed TV ratings and accompanying tweets. It found&nbsp;</span>Twitter messages were shown to cause a &ldquo;significant increase&rdquo; in ratings 29 percent of the time.</p><p dir="ltr">This was especially true for competitive/reality-based television shows, sports, and comedies. &quot;Catfish&quot; corresponds with their findings, but why do shows like &quot;Orange is the New Black&quot; and &quot;Scandal&quot;&nbsp;also have such significant representation in the Twittersphere?</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb">Unlike other network dramas, both &quot;Orange is the New Black&quot; and &quot;Scandal&quot; inhabit a special quality often missing: the ability to aggressively interact with viewers. With &quot;Orange is the New Black,&quot; the interaction lies in the ways in which we can view it.&nbsp;</span></p><p dir="ltr">Its release is made for binge watching. But rather than discovering the show on one&rsquo;s own time, it&rsquo;s calculated release and critical acclaim escalated its appeal. Consumers could read a positive review from <em>The New Yorker</em>&rsquo;s Emily Nussbaum, and then curl up with all 13 episodes.</p><p dir="ltr">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb"><img alt="" class="image-original_image" src="http://www.wbez.org/system/files/styles/original_image/llo/insert-images/BCjXolgCUAAnFlq.png" style="height: 241px; width: 300px; float: left;" title="(Twitter/darbystnchfld)" />With &quot;Scandal,&quot; the interaction lies with the wild plot lines that dive from one extreme to the next. But like &quot;Catfish&quot; and &quot;Orange is the New Black,&quot; this show&#39;s&nbsp;plot lines make you want to talk about them.<br /><br />In <a href="http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=185534670" target="_blank">an interview</a> with Michelle Martin about &quot;Scandal&rsquo;s&quot;&nbsp;Twitter popularity, Gene Demby of&nbsp;NPR&#39;s Code Switch said, &ldquo;It&#39;s like watching the Super Bowl on DVR, right? You want to be in the room with everyone kind of yelling at the screen and rolling their eyes and throwing their hands up and saying all kinds of snarky stuff.&rdquo;<br /><br />There is information to decipher, but unlike a show like &quot;Mad Men&quot; that often requires research to understand its layers of references to things like &quot;Dante&rsquo;s Inferno&quot; or &quot;Rosemary&rsquo;s Baby,&quot; these shows keep you glued to their characters&nbsp;</span>&mdash; what they do and don&rsquo;t say and what will ultimately happen to them. It&rsquo;s almost impossible to not engage.</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb">The fever of their fandom inspires other people to both start watching the show and to participate in the discussion. I only watched a handful of prior episodes before I started watching the current season of &quot;Catfish.&quot; But while scanning my Twitter feed during the premiere of the first episode, I noticed most people were talking about only one thing: what was happening on their screens. Soon enough, I began participating at well. There was no desire to try and &ldquo;fit in&rdquo; with the discussion at hand; rather the action of the screen was so compelling that there was little I could hold back.</span></p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb">We consume television in a fractured state. The UK drama &quot;Skins&quot; ended on Monday after seven seasons. I have never watched an episode on my television. Instead, I relied on illegal streaming websites to fuel my passion for a show that perfectly encapsulates the confusion, desire, and melancholy of being a young person. </span></p><p dir="ltr">Other shows I save for massive DVR viewings. If I miss an episode of a favorite series, I can wait until the next morning to find a clear stream on the network&rsquo;s website. And for shows that slipped between my fingers during the regular television season, there are always rentable DVDs. This is Netflix&rsquo;s bread and butter.</p><p dir="ltr"><span id="docs-internal-guid-7475917e-5df9-bb31-a78e-f85bbf5b22fb">In that sense, social media as a place of community helps fuel the lost group aspect of television watching. Twitter connects TV to its live, collective habits. It is a reminder that entertainment can be even greater when matched with others who equally care about it. </span></p><p dir="ltr">My family and I often watched shows together in my parents&rsquo; bedroom. When we got older and busier, this fell away, but my sister and I still found time to watch our favorite shows together and pause our viewings to comment on the situations before us.</p><p dir="ltr">I live alone now and I didn&rsquo;t realize I missed this social interaction. But with the release of shows like &quot;Scandal&quot;&nbsp;or &quot;Orange is the New Black,&quot; I am finding that the social (with family, with friends and strangers, too) is merely a few clicks away.</p><p dir="ltr">&nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr">What is your favorite TV show to engage with online? Let us know in the comments section. &nbsp;</p><p dir="ltr"><em>&quot;Catfish&quot; airs Tuesdays at 9pm CST on MTV. &quot;Orange is the New Black&quot; is available on Netflix Instant Streaming. &quot;Scandal&quot; returns in the fall to ABC on Thursdays at 9pm CST.</em></p><p dir="ltr"><em>Britt Julious&nbsp;writes about culture in and outside of Chicago. Follow Britt&#39;s essays for&nbsp;<a href="http://wbez.tumblr.com/" target="_blank">WBEZ&#39;s Tumblr</a>&nbsp;or on Twitter&nbsp;<a href="http://twitter.com/britticisms" target="_blank">@britticisms</a>.</em></p></p> Thu, 08 Aug 2013 10:00:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/blogs/britt-julious/2013-08/television-twitter-new-live-water-cooler-conversation-108332 Morning Shift: Palm oil's unsavory beginnings http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-08-07/morning-shift-palm-oils-unsavory-beginnings-108314 <img typeof="foaf:Image" src="http://llnw.wbez.org//main-images/Palm Oil-Flickr- cyn_nister.jpg" alt="" /><p><p>We discuss the Bloomberg investigation into the unsavory practices in the palm oil industry. And do you care who your children&#39;s role models are? Baseball&#39;s recent PED scandal is calling the issue of role models to the plate.</p><script src="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-37.js?header=false"></script><noscript>[<a href="//storify.com/WBEZ/morning-shift-37" target="_blank">View the story "Morning Shift: Palm oil's unsavory beginnings" on Storify</a>]</noscript></p> Wed, 07 Aug 2013 08:38:00 -0500 http://www.wbez.org/programs/morning-shift-tony-sarabia/2013-08-07/morning-shift-palm-oils-unsavory-beginnings-108314