Archive for February, 2012
We’re back from a Presidents Day break last week (and, well, for me from being very under the weather as well).
- Pew Research on Privacy: The Pew Internet and American Life Project released new data on social network users and privacy, “Privacy management on social media sites.” The report notes, ”Profile “pruning” is on the rise. Deleting unwanted friends, comments and photo tags [has grown] in popularity.”
- Pinterest and Copyright: While Pinterest is continuing to grow in adoption, questions about its ability to manage copyright issues are also rising. See: “Is Pinterest a Haven for Copyright Violations?,” “Pinterest’s uneasy relationship with copyright law: what happens next” and “New code lets websites opt-out of Pinterest.”
- Twitter and Rumors: Two interesting pieces on the intersection of Twitter and rumors or misinformation. “Twitter and Death Hoaxes, Alive and Sadly, Well,” from the New York Times; and from The Guardian, a fascinating interactive look at how specific rumors spread on Twitter during the UK riots last year, “Riot rumours: how misinformation spread on Twitter during a time of crisis.”
- New NPR Ethics Handbook: Craig Silverman at Poynter reviewed NPR’s new Ethics Handbook, “NPR handbook offers accuracy tips for all news orgs, including ‘errors are inevitable.’”
- China and Social Media: Nieman Journalism Lab reviewed a fairly new site that draws news from social media within China called Tea Leaf Nation, “Tea Leaf Nation: A look at China through a social media lens.”
- China and Human Rights: This is a worth listening, but if you didn’t hear the This American Life episode in January with Mike Daisey, “Mr. Daisey and the Apple Factory,” it’s recommended. (Part of the episode is excerpted from Daisey’s live show, “The Agony and the Ecstasy of Steve Jobs,” running in NYC currently at the Public Theater).
This is my first post since the Logos Institute Blog began its weekly “what we’re reading” series.
I haven’t been reading as much lately as I usually do, because I’ve been putting the finishing touches on my next book, about which you’ll hear much more in the coming months.
But when I’ve read it has mostly been building upon my reflections on China by paying attention to what others with far more experience there are saying.
An excellent starting point for anyone interested in understanding China from the perspective of the United States is Henry Kissinger’s On China. This first-hand account from the nation’s architect of the 1972 Opening to China is both a fascinating read and a good guidebook to the seminal moments in China’s and the United States’ increasingly important relationship.
But to really understand how China got from 1972 to the present, from a Chinese perspective, the indispensable read is Deng Xiaoping and the Transformation of China by Ezra F. Vogel. The author is Henry Ford II Professor of Social Sciences at Harvard. He took a break from teaching to spend time in the CIA in the 1990s as the National Intelligence Officer for East Asia. His voluminous and deeply-researched book includes private and Party papers, interviews with family members and participants at major events, and a deep understanding of the day-to-day workings of the key players.
It’s particularly interesting (and both fun and scary) to read Deng’s accounts of his meetings with Henry Kissinger side-by-side with Kissinger’s. The book also places those meetings into a Chinese context and shows how the U.S. mis-calculated significantly again and again in its relationships with China — from the risk of Chinese intervention in the Korean war to China’s relationship with Vietnam. China invaded Vietnam soon after we left, worried about Vietnam’s likely invasion of Cambodia and fearing Soviet encirclement. So much for our fear of global communist domination.
From Facebook’s IPO to the Komen/Planned Parenthood crisis to the biggest television event of the year, it was a full week.
- Facebook IPO: Facebook finally filed for its IPO last week, one of the most widely read pieces of financial communication in a long time. A helpful summary from The New York Times, “Facebook Filing: The Highlights.”
- Komen for the Cure/Planned Parenthood Crisis: Komen’s decision to halt funding of a Planned Parenthood program that provided breast cancer screenings resulted in a crisis that spread like wildfire and ended with a change in policy and apology from Komen at the end of last week. Good summary by Kivi Leroux Miller, “The Accidental Rebranding of Komen for the Cure;” good media analysis by Jay Rosen, “Interview as Train Wreck: Susan G. Komen Foundation meets Andrea Mitchell;” and a good example from Beth Kanter of the use of Pinterest in protest, “Komen Can Kiss My Mammogram.”
- Pinterest: Speaking of Pinterest, reading lots of analysis and research on this new(ish) social site, including on referral traffic, demographics, its relationship to copyright laws, strong brand examples, and “What Pinterest is Doing That Facebook Isn’t.”
- Super Bowl: The big game by the numbers, from Google and Twitter, which saw record tweet-per-second activity last night.