Drawing on interviews with professional social media marketers, Johan Lindquist and Esther Weltevrede break down how the algorithmic infrastructure of…
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.
The Covid-19 Pandemic Endangers Sex Worker Health and Safety, Underscoring Need for Structural Reformsby Denton Callander, Étienne Meunier and Mariah Grant
The Covid-19 pandemic has affected people across all walks of life, among them sex workers. In this essay based on their SSRC-funded research, Denton Callander, Étienne Meunier, and Mariah Grant examine how the pandemic has impacted sex workers in the United States, analyzing the role stigma plays in heightening the health, social, and economic threats posed by the pandemic. To ameliorate sex workers’ conditions, the authors argue for decriminalizing sex work and providing long-term support.
To help contextualize current efforts to identify and combat online misinformation, Rebecca Emigh gives a history of authentication methods for oral, visual, and literary news through multiple eras of Western history.
Yasmin Ortiga and Karen Anne S. Liao conducted research supported by the SSRC on the dramatic disruptions that Filipino labor migrants experienced as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, and the support (or lack thereof) of their plight by the Filipino state. Arguing that labor as well as commodity supply chains have been thrown in upheaval, the authors describe the limits of the Philippines’ labor export strategy. In particular, they focus on two sets of labor migrants—nurses unable to take jobs abroad, and repatriated cruise ship workers—for whom dignified work at home was unavailable. Ortiga and Liao conclude that treating labor as a commodity has deep human and social costs.
Renan Gonçalves Leonel da Silva and Larry Au share results of their SSRC-supported study that compares three countries whose response to the pandemic has been especially fraught: Brazil, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Through a deep analysis of mainstream media coverage, they identify and analyze the different ways that Covid skepticism played out in these countries. Drawing on the concept of “sociotechnical imaginaries,” the authors show how blind spots in the ways experts and policymakers explain the need for certain responses can spark contestation over them.
Despite popular perceptions that trust in news media is on the decline, trust may actually be ascendant. However, Rachel Moran argues, to understand trust in media today, one has to understand its relational nature. Relational trust is tied to hyper-individualized assessments of the authenticity of the journalist that give leverage to micro-celebrities and pseudo journalists on social media.