Facebook teams with UK newspaper for series of positive sponsored articles

first_img Comment Share your voice Facebook’s had a rough couple of years. With revelations that its platform was twisted into a tool for election interference, propaganda and harassment, as well as a breeding ground for hate speech, it’s hard to feel good about the social network these days. So Facebook has partnered with The Telegraph, a major UK newspaper, to publish more than two dozen stories as part of a promotional campaign to burnish its image.  The series, called “Being human in the Information Age,” includes articles ranging from defending Facebook’s mission to “bring the world closer together” to primers on how the social network is handling cyberbullying, free expression and scammers. The partnership was first reported on by Business Insider. “There’s no doubt that the internet has changed our lives,” the introduction for the series says. “Here, we take a closer look at new challenges raised by the internet like fake news and data privacy — and how social media is tackling these challenges.” A Facebook spokeswoman said the sponsored articles were part of “larger marketing efforts in the UK with the goal of educating and driving awareness of our local investments, initiatives and partnerships here in the UK that have a positive impact on people’s lives.” The Telegraph didn’t immediately responded to a request for comment. 1 Facebook Politics Tech Industry Facebook, Instagram, Twitter: What’s your relationship… The move marks Facebook’s latest effort to respond to the deluge of criticism it’s faced in the past couple of years. Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who was once whispered about as a potential contender to run for president of the United States, spends most of his time in public defending the company’s latest snafu while extolling the virtues of what it offers to the more than 2.3 billion people who log on each month. Meanwhile, people’s trust in Silicon Valley has dropped. Roughly half of Americans told the Pew Research Center last year they don’t trust social media sites to protect their data, and 62% said in 2017 that they believe online harassment is a “major problem.” Facebook’s challenge with paying for positive articles, which are marked below the headline as “Brought to you by Facebook” to indicate they’re ads, is that they don’t always work as intended.  Two days before a gunman used Facebook to livestream a massacre he committed in New Zealand, the Telegraph-Facebook partnership published an article titled “What action is Facebook taking to tackle terrorist content?” It profiled a London employee who works on Facebook’s counterterrorism team, touting how the company has removed terrorist content from its service. “Between human expertise, tooling [software development] and machine learning, we’re achieving extraordinary things, of which I’m very proud,” the Facebook employee says in the article.  After the shooting, Facebook quickly found itself explaining why it had failed to identify and stop the gunman’s livestream, copies of which spread across the internet. The series also includes an article with instructions on how to protect your privacy on social media networks, particularly on Facebook. But at no point does it offer instructions on how to close and delete your account, a remedy a former Facebook executive has recommended. First published April 3 at 5:18 p.m. PT.Updated April 4 at 12:19 p.m. PT: Adds Facebook comment. Tags 5:14 Now playing: Watch this:last_img read more

Kutubdia biodiversity in danger

first_imgHere was the embankment that had saved Kutubdia from different cyclonic stroms over the years. Photo: Jewel SheelBoth local and foreign investors are keen to set up industries in Kutubdia island while the government also has similar plans. However, environmentalists warn unplanned growth of industries may destroy the environment and biodiversity of the island.Coastal islands like Maheskhali, Kutubdia, Sonadia and St Martin’s are sanctuaries for amphibians and aquatic animals. There are four to five species of dolphins and two species of tortoise that are on the verge of extinction.Director general of the Department of Environment (DoE), AKM Rafique Ahammed, told Prothom Alo, “Those who want to set up industries in the island have to get an approval. If any of the industries poses a risk to the environment, it has to carry out Environment Impact Assessment (EIA).”According to Petrobangla, local company Beximco has sought 700 acres of land to the power, energy and mineral resources ministry. Beximco in its website said the island would be its centre of investment for the energy sector.Bangladesh Economic Zone Authority (BEZA) also wants to establish an economic zone in the island.Two Indian companies dealing with Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) have shown their interest to set up terminals in Kutubdia as well, as did another Indonesian company.Petrobangla officials said investors in the energy sector are also showing interest in Kutubdia.The government is constructing a sea port at Matharbari. Once it is done, large vessels carrying heavy machinery will be able to berth at the Matarbari seaport and it would be a suitable place to establish an LNG terminal. Kutubdia is four kilometers away from Matarbari. This will facilitate bringing in raw materials and LNG containers.Kutubdia upazila chairman Faridul Islam Chowdhury said there is no electricity in the area and most of the embankments are damaged. After the cyclonic storm in 1991, many people left Kutubdia. Some are still leaving, too.He said the prime minister had pledged that electricity will be available by 2020.Local people get employment opportunities if industries are set up, he further said, arguing that they will not leave.Shahera Begum lives in a hut near Kutubdia island. While talking to this correspondent on 27 December 2018, she had said her house would be protected due to the embankment despite the fury of the sea.After the cyclonic storm Fani had hit the island on 4 May, a fisherman of the island said a portion of the embankment was engulfed by the sea. However, Shahera’s cottage survived. But it is now at risk of erosion.A big portion of Kutubdia island was engulfed by the Bay of Bengal and the embankments were damaged by the storms one after another. The residents of the island are leaving their ancestral houses, crop fields and fish enclosures. Where they are settling anew, they are naming the place ‘Kutubdiapara’.According to the local administration, these people are settling at Cox’s Bazar Sadar, Maheskhali, Ramu, Chakaria, Dulahazara and Kekua, Khagrachhari, Bandarban, Rangamati Sadar and Chattogram Sadar and Anwara upazila.The lighthouse which had been giving light to sailors since 1848 it broke down during the cyclone of 1991. The administration did not take any steps to this end. People have now started living in the area named ‘Lighthousepara’.Life and riskOne has to go to Kutubdia from Magnama Ghat of Pekua Upazila of Cox’s Bazar by trawler. There is a small bazaar one kilometre away from the ghat. Fish and salt are sold in the market here. One can see the towers of windmills few kilometres later.There is no boundary around the power plants set up on nearly eight acres of land. The security system is not up to the standard while electricity supply is not more than one megawatt. A total of 350 families receive electricity for seven to eight hours a day. There is also a solar and a diesel-powered power station. Only 12 per cent of the islanders get electricity.There have been bumper production of both salt and rice this year. More than 700 tonnes of salt were produced in about 7,000 acres of land. The farmers are, however, worried for its low price. Again, the paddy invented for salty lands by the scientists had a good yield. But the rice prices are also low.Four researchers from two US universities published a research report on geographical changes in Kutubdia in 2017. The study says the size of the island was 77 square kilometres in 1972, but it shrunk to 68 square kilometres in 2013.Meanwhile, a study carried out by the Center for Environmental and Geographic Information Services (CEGIS), a government agency, says the total area of Kutubdia island was about 100 square kilometres in 1840. As many as 40 square kilometres of the lands were reduced due to erosion. Upazila administration data also give similar impression.Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, executive director of Coast Trust, an organisation working on coastal development, said due to erosion and lack of damns the island and the residents’ lives are at stake.”Scattered plans will not help to protect this island. We need an inclusive plan. The problem will increase if the residents are displaced,” he added.As per the upazila administration data, there was a 40-kilometre embankment around the island. Half of the damn collapsed in the 1991 cyclone. It was reduced to eight kilometres by the onslaught of the cyclone Sidr, Aila, Roanu, Mahasen and the latest Fani. As a result, a large part of the island goes under water in regular tide.Upazila Nirbahi Officer (UNO) Dipak Kumar Roy said he has requested the Water Development Board to repair the damn as soon as possible.The water level of the sea is very high at the moment. It should be kept in mind while repairing the embankments, he added.Secretary to the Ministry of Water Resources, Kabir Bin Anwar, said the ministry had decided to repair and rebuild the damns.Also, mangrove forests will be created to protect the coast as the Ministry of Forest and Environment and the directorate will remain responsible to protect the biodiversity of the island.According to Kutubdia upazila administration, every year there is erosion in different places of the island in normal tide. Two years ago the island’s population was about 300,000. It is less than half now.Another 5,000 people have been left vulnerable due to cyclone Fani, he added.Ishtiaq Uddin Ahmed, former country director for the International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN), stressed the need for rehabilitating the residents of the island.”Local residents must be protected before any project is implemented there and erosion must be stopped, too,” he said.”Otherwise, being one of the vital source of salt and fishes, the island, its inhabitants and the proposed investment will be in danger,” he observed.”Coastal islands like Kutubdia protect the country from the initial strike of storm surge. Before upgrading it to an industrial area, it’s overall wellbeing has to be kept in mind,” Inshtiaq further said.*This report, originally published in Prothom Alo’s print edition, has been rewritten in English by Rabiul Islam and Farjana Liakat.last_img read more

Three Reasons Apples iCloud Isnt Ready for Business

first_img Enroll Now for Free Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now 1. iCloud is personal, not professional. It is overwhelmingly geared toward individual users with more than one Apple device. The problem is that the same service used to sync music and television shows is also used to share calendars and documents between devices. Differentiating professional data, contacts, calendars and documents from personal ones, while possible, can require more time and effort than some entrepreneurs are willing to put in. Related: Steve Jobs: Victim of His Own Dogged Determination? 2. Collaboration is limited or doesn’t work.Apple’s iCloud is device-dependent. Group-sharing options — for instance, syncing calendars among co-workers — are limited, and when they are present they’re restricted to other iCloud users. Not only does this require your colleagues to own an Apple device, they also must be using a compatible operating system and have an iCloud account set up.The iCloud also lacks document sharing capability. For limited document storage — say you need to access a document on the road from your iPhone — it can work, but the document has to be stored in your personal iCloud. Again, the iCloud is a solo experience.Related: How Apple’s Siri Could Destroy Local SEO 3. Other business sharing solutions do it better.To some, it might seem as though Apple is trying to reinvent the wheel when it comes to business file sharing. Other team-based document sharing solutions such as San Mateo, Calif.-based Sugar Sync or Google Apps can usually be easier to set up and more flexible.The mobile version of Google Apps — which can be accessed on an iPhone, iPad or even an iPod Touch — is fast, stable, device-agnostic and allows for first-rate team access. All it takes is to bookmark your Google Apps account homepage in your iPhone or click on the Apps button in the Google iPhone app to create a superior solution to the iCloud.Given its limited scope and that there are so many other ways to access files from the Web, why bother with iCloud? Our bet is that most businesses won’t.Related: Why Entrepreneurs Love Steve Jobs Have you tried or do you use Apple’s iCloud? Tell us about your experience in the comments section below. While Apple may be a gem in the eyes of its customers, one of its newest features — the iCloud — is sorely lacking when it comes to applications for small-business users.Apple markets iCloud, its cloud-computing and file-syncing service, as a powerful content storage solution. But businesses can struggle to get serious productivity out of iCloud. And as an enticement for businesses looking to switch over to Apple products, iCloud doesn’t begin to make the sale.Here are three reasons you might want to skip the Apple iCloud for your business: min readcenter_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. February 6, 2012last_img read more

Google Increases User Privacy Controls

first_img Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. This story originally appeared on Reuters 2 min read June 1, 2015 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Register Now » Google increased privacy controls for users and rolled out a website on Monday that answers frequently asked questions in response to increasing concern over how the search giant collects and uses its massive amounts of data.Users have been able to control certain privacy settings for months or years, such as whether to save web browser and location history, which is also used in targeted advertising.But managing the controls is confusing and time consuming because the settings are in various places across the web that are not always easy to find.Now users will be able to use My Account, which provides a privacy checkup and security checkup, or lists where people can check off which data they want to be public and private.Google’s new website answers frequently asked questions, such as whether the company sells personal data and what information is given to advertisers.”We knew that users find privacy and security really mysterious so we wanted to make it very approachable,” said Guemmy Kim, product manager for account controls and settings.Data control has become increasingly important to users in recent years as more day-to-day activity has moved to the Internet.In 2013, Edward Snowden leaked classified documents that showed the U.S. National Security Agency was engaging in mass collection of phone records, placing companies that have enormous amounts of data, such as Google, Facebook and Apple, under increasing scrutiny.Only 9 percent of people in a recent Pew survey felt they had a “lot” of control over their data.Monday’s rollout comes on the heels of newly increased app permissions for Android, which Google announced at its annual developer’s conference last week. The new system mirrors the app permissions on Apple’s iPhones, which do not allow apps to automatically access numerous types of data, such as location or phone contacts.(Reporting By Yasmeen Abutaleb; Editing by Michael Perry)last_img read more