Migrant farmworkers, many of whom belong to communities of color that have been disproportionately affected by Covid-19, are essential workers…
What does tracking the provenance of news stories tell us about authenticity and authentication in international news reporting? In this essay, Alejandro Paz explores sourcing and citational practices and imagines more robust methods for tracing the circulation of news.
The recent re-capturing of state power by the Taliban has led to much speculation of how they will rule Afghanistan. In this essay, Adam Baczko argues that one key part of the answer is to understand how the Taliban governed the rural territories they controlled while insurgents, in particular the judicial system they established. The Taliban courts, run by clerics, in many cases were seen as more legitimate and consistent, and less corrupt, than those set up by the NATO-backed Afghan government. Whether the localized social order that the Taliban created as a rebel group can now be replicated throughout the country as the ruling regime is open to question.
Drawing on interviews with professional social media marketers, Johan Lindquist and Esther Weltevrede break down how the algorithmic infrastructure of platforms such as Instagram shape public understandings of "authentic" politicians, influencers, and businesses.
Amid the Covid-19 pandemic, the transition of many offices to remote work has led to new ways for employers to track workers’ movements, behavior, and productivity. Through their SSRC-funded research, Jessica Vitak and Michael Zimmer surveyed remote workers in the US about perceptions of current workplace monitoring practices. They argue that worker concerns about reductions in privacy and independence at work might have negative outcomes on worker productivity, satisfaction, and well-being.
Distrust in vaccines is not a new phenomenon and has existed since the first inoculations in the eighteenth century. Through her SSRC funded research, Allyson M. Poska investigated the Spanish Empire’s smallpox eradication campaign and how colonial subjects, particularly Indigenous and Afro-descendant peoples, in Spanish-controlled Peru resisted the government’s vaccination program. Vaccine hesitancy, Poska argues, was partly instigated by distrust of a colonial system that administered discriminatory policies and enforced slavery.
In examining the current landscape of anti-disinformation research, Maite Taboada argues that social media companies sharing larger data samples with researchers could help efforts to distinguish between true and false information through language and text analysis.
Despite calls from both ends of the political spectrum to regulate social media platforms, new federal action has been slow to materialize. However, Steph Hill outlines how social, political, and advertising pressures may be creating a new system of regulation stemming not from governmental sources but from fellow corporate actors.