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Race

Wednesday News: Apple announces new products, Barnes & Noble loses less money this quarter, Man Booker Prize is now multinational,  and victim blaming Janay Rice

Wednesday News: Apple announces new products, Barnes & Noble loses less...

F is for Fanboy/Fangirl. You know who you are. You buy a new Apple device every single year. You line up outside Apple Stores waiting for it to appear. You pick fights with Phandroids (aka Google Android fans) about what phone had which feature first. You are in hog heaven right about now.

… and also for Fitness. A new app designed to give you a comprehensive view of your daily activity, via the watch’s motion-tracking sensors.

… and also for Four Point Seven and Five Point Five. Those are the screen sizes of the two new iPhones, the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6 Plus. They’re substantially larger than the iPhone 5s but are more in line with the size of competing Android phones. –Yahoo Tech

Analysts are projecting a loss of 22 cents per share for the fiscal year. After being $1.33 billion a year ago, analysts project revenue to drop 5% year-over-year to $1.26 billion for the quarter. For the year, revenue is projected to roll in at $6.10 billion –Forbes

In other award news, though:

Louise Erdrich has been named winner of the 2014 PEN/Saul Bellow Award for Achievement in American Fiction.

. . .

Ursula K. Le Guin has been named winner of the National Book Foundation’s 2014 Medal for Distinguished Contribution to American Letters. She will receive this honor at the 65th National Book Awards ceremony in New York on Nov. 19. –Washington Post

The Root has a piece detailing some of the “worst responses” to the video if you want to witness the awfulness.

And if you haven’t seen the video yet, be warned: it’s incredibly disturbing.

That we feel entitled (and excited) to access gut-wrenching images of a woman being abused – to be entranced by the looks of domestic violence – speaks volumes not only about the man who battered her, but also about we who gaze in parasitic rapture. We click and consume, comment and carry on. What are we saying about ourselves when we place (black) women’s pain under a microscope only to better consume the full kaleidoscope of their suffering?
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Black women are often systematically excluded from both the category of “woman” and that of “victim”. Our pain, these days as ever, can never be pure enough. –The Guardian

Tuesday News: Reddit’s dilemma, Adobe Digital Edition 4, Baptist responds to The Economist, and authors buying reviews

Tuesday News: Reddit’s dilemma, Adobe Digital Edition 4, Baptist responds to...

It is pretty much impossible to be a free speech absolutist without having to defend the right to publicize some really skeevy stuff. And for absolutist First Amendment attorneys and scholars, the principle might be enough. But for the corporate entity Reddit (which is largely owned by Conde Nast’s parent company), the “ideal” of unfettered free speech is unlikely to remain uncompromised – for good and bad.

The challenge for Reddit now is: How does it retain its commitment to such free-speech principles while it is trying to raise money from a group of what could be nervous or conservative venture funds? Twitter has also wrestled with its early commitment to being the “free-speech wing of the free-speech party,” and its desire to grow and generate revenue for its public shareholders has led to a form of quasi-censorship in which certain tweets and accounts are banned or hidden from users at the request of governments. But Twitter’s challenges are like a day at the beach compared with Reddit’s.

Remaining committed to free speech is hard enough when the speech you are trying to protect is violent or homophobic or repulsive in a number of other ways, but it becomes exponentially more difficult when you have investors with hundreds of millions of dollars on the line breathing down your neck. Will Reddit start to water down its commitment, in the hope that it can bridge those two divides without losing its soul? Or will it be forced to mimic Facebook, which routinely removes photos of women breast-feeding and never says why? –Gigaom

For example, Adobe DE 4.0 does not support embedded audio or video, and it is also lacking support for basics like right to left languages (Arabic, Hebrew, etc) . The search function is incomplete, and the app is also lacking advanced rendering features (such as knockout, overprint, and non-separable blend modes). And last but not least, mouse wheel scrolling is officially not supported for Epub3 ebooks. –The Digital Reader

But the Economist didn’t apologize for dismissing what slaves said about slavery. That kind of arrogance remains part of a wider, more subtle pattern in how black testimony often gets treated – sometimes unknowingly – as less reliable than white. The Economist reviewer was saying that the key sources of my book, African Americans – black people – cannot be believed.

As the historian Jelani Cobb pointed out to MSNBC’s Chris Hayes on Friday night, the reviewer’s ideas about slavery’s history are not actually as uncommon as many of us would like to believe. He’s right: All across the American south, you can go to historic plantation sites still pushing the idea that slaves who had a “good” master were happy, and “faithful.” –The Guardian

To date — it’s currently Sunday, 7 September 2014 — no Goodreads author has lost her or his account due to buying of fiverr reviews. Even though Patrick, Director of Author Marketing (or whatever his official title is) hinted that authors could be deleted if they were buying fiverr reviews, not one has been so terminated.
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Frustration with Goodreads’ lack of action on this issue prompted me to announce publicly that I would no longer spend my limited free time doing their job for them. I would not track down the information, collect the screen shots, do the leg work to clean up their site of fraudulent — and illegal — “ads” masquerading as customer reviews. I didn’t say I’d stop doing it; I just wasn’t going to give the information to Goodreads any more. I was, shall we say, moving house. –Linda Hilton