Happy birthday to the Internet!
You know, that thing that brings us cats and stuff. Forty-four years ago today, a message moved between two computers connected through a network designed to enable the sharing of information between various government funded science projects.
Columnist Michael Hilzik looks back at the web’s infancy, including a forward-looking 1968 paper titled “The Computer as a Communication Device,” co-written by Robert W. Taylor, one of the lead officers at the Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency.
"In a few years," the paper began, "men will be able to communicate more effectively through a machine than face to face."
Communicating online, he concluded, “will be as natural an extension of individual work as face-to-face communication is now.”
Read more on the Internet’s origins here, or just click around pretty much anywhere else on this page because, amazingly, you’re on the Internet right now!
test reblogged from motherjones
An NPR host’s tweeted bereavement
"Weekend Edition Saturday" host Scott Simon lost his mother, Patricia Lyons Simon Newman Monday night, but not before spending, and sharing, many hours at her side.
His more than 1.2 million Twitter followers have, over the course of the month, witnessed Simon documenting her struggles in the ICU, and his own difficulties in seeing his mother’s life ebb away before him.
Simon’s tweets show just how social media allows for new ways of coping with the inevitability of death, and the weight of the final moments spent with loved ones:
Many followers praised Simon’s openness for giving them the sense that they were not suffering alone. As one user put it, “comforting to know others are going through the same thing as my fam. May your mom pass peacefully, as I hope my father will.”
For just a sample of Simon’s poignant messages (more can be found via NPR):
Mother asks, “Will this go on forever?” She means pain, dread. “No.” She says, “But we’ll go on forever. You & me.” Yes.— Scott Simon (@nprscottsimon)
I love holding my mother’s hand. Haven’t held it like this since I was 9. Why did I stop? I thought it unmanly? What crap.— Scott Simon (@nprscottsimon)
Photo: Wally Skalij / Los Angeles
Tumblr users have always had the option of marking their account as NSFW, and since around 10% of Tumblr is porn, people were generally pretty good at labelling their blogs.
However, under Tumblr’s new content restrictions, posts from Adult-rated blogs will no longer show up on tags. Any tags. Also, Tumblr is able to flag your account as Adult without you labelling it as such—although users do have the option of appealing to the “Trust & Safety Team” if their feel their blog has been flagged unfairly.
Adult blogs are now unsearchable.
If your blog has been flagged as Adult, nothing you post will ever appear on Tumblr’s public tag searches. Your posts will only be visible to your own followers and the followers of people who reblog your content.
This means that if you want to publicize something like a Kickstarter campaign or political message, or even to signal boost a personal plea for help, that post will still not show up on Tumblr’s internal search engine. You are cut off from everyone except your own circle of followers.
Also, Many Tumblr users are finding that some tags have disappeared entirely from Tumblr’s iPhone app.
It’s unclear whether this is directly linked to the new content restrictions, but for example, iPhone users searching the #gay, #lesbian or #bisexual tags have reported seeing the result “No posts found,” although #bi, #lgbt and #queer still produce results. [READ MORE]
Continuing to reblog this story because this is 100% bad news bears.
This is an awkward situation all around. How do you think Tumblr could have handled this situation better, folks? I bet they’d love constructive feedback here. Shoot us an ask. Will share the best ideas with everyone.
Head on over to ShortFormBlog for a interesting discussion on how Tumblr should manage its complicated NSFW issue.
test reblogged from shortformblog
Time to feel a bit old if you remember Reddit’s first-ever post, or LiveJournal’s initial “this is a test,” entry!
test reblogged from laughingsquid
Edward Snowden: From contractor to leaker
Plenty is now known about the National Security Agency programs that Snowden helped exposed last week in a series of leaks to the Guardian and Washington Post, and now his past is slowly being unearthed.
Snowden started life in Elizabeth City, a river port along North Carolina’s coast. His family soon moved to a gray clapboard home in Ellicott City, a Baltimore suburb near the NSA’s vast headquarters at Ft. Meade. He told the Guardian that he struggled in high school and eventually dropped out. A neighbor, Joyce Kinsey, recalled him as a quiet boy who often was on his computer.
Meanwhile, Snowden’s current location is unknown after he checked out of a ritzy Hong Kong hotel earlier this week, and his former employer Booz Allen Hamilton formally fired him today.
Read more on his past here.
Photos: Guardian / EPA, Mario Tama / Getty Images,
Meet Edward Snowden: The man behind the leaks
A former CIA employee and defense contractor, Snowden revealed his identity to the world earlier today, putting an end to speculation as to who leaked secret government surveillance programs to the Guardian and Washington Post.
The 29-year-old is currently holed up in Hong Kong as the controversy over the various revelations he divulged continues. And though he is wary of the U.S. government reaching for him, he’s said he never intended to remain anonymous. As he told the Post:
“Allowing the United States government to intimidate its people with threats of retaliation for revealing wrongdoing is contrary to the public interest.”
Political figures attacked and praised the leaks on the Sunday shows, with Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) notably calling for Americans to sign up with a class-action lawsuit to challenge the government’s activities.
Photo: Ewen MacAskill, The Guardian / Associated Presss
The NSA, PRISM, Verizon and more: Just how much privacy do you really have?
A revelation from the Guardian Wednesday shed new light on the depth of information the government has been secretly obtaining on Americans, exposing that the National Security Agency has been collecting phone records for Verizon customers for years.
Before the dust even had a chance to settle on that story, another leak prompted the NSA to admit it has also been tapping into the servers of nine of the world’s leading Internet companies to probe into emails, photos, documents and more.
President Obama earlier today addressed the Internet investigations:
"This does not apply to U.S. citizens, and this does not apply to people living in the United States."
Obama also dismissed those expressing concerns over the broad reach of the NSA’s data-mining:
“You can’t have 100 percent security and also then have 100 percent privacy. And zero inconvenience.”
Photos: Saul Loeb / AFP/Getty Images, EPA, Associated Press
Since we launched our first sponsored post on Tumblr Radar one year ago, we’ve been proud to see our partners bring their most creative work to Tumblr. Their posts have already earned more than 10 million likes and reblogs.
Today, we’ll start to bring sponsored posts to your Dashboard on the web. Just like in our mobile apps, these posts will simply blend in with the posts from the blogs you follow.
Now back to your regularly scheduled Dashboard!
The Tumblrs, they are a-changin’
test reblogged from staff
One photographer’s return to Flickr
Flickr has recently fallen by the wayside as newer photography upstarts like Instagram and even Google+, but with Yahoo now throwing its weight around (something we Tumblr folks should be well aware of) the longstanding site has been given some new features like a new interface and 1 TB of free storage.
And our own photographer, Robert Lachman, has been drawn back into the fold after a two-year absence from the site. So far, he’s enjoying the revisions, and wrote about his newfound appreciation for Flickr over at Framework.
Beyond the photos, Robert has another tidbit of wisdom about the nature of similar online platforms:
I use Instagram as my main photo app to send photos to my social networking sites, Twitter and Facebook, and directing a photo to Flickr is just one extra click.
But it adds up to a lot of time. I thought computers were supposed to save us time. Social networking has become a full-time job.
Photo: Robert Lachman / Flickr
In this week’s Newsweek, a little something about Yahoo & Tumblr’s marriage. And a request: “Please don’t mess with any of our favorite Tumblrs, like the beauties below.”
- BEST TUMBLR FOR BREAKING NEWS: SHORTFORMBLOG
- MOST LOL-WORTHY ANIMAL TUMBLR: CATS THAT LOOK LIKE RON SWANSON
- BEST CROWDSOURCED TECH TUMBLR: THE INTERNET WISHLIST
- MOST CHARMING VINTAGE-Y TUMBLR: QUESTIONABLE ADVICE AND ADVERTISEMENTS
- MOST STIMULATING ART-AND-DESIGN TUMBLR: HELLO YOU CREATIVES
- MOST GORGEOUS PHOTOGRAPHY TUMBLR: FOTOJOURNALISMUS
- TRAVEL TUMBLR THAT’S ALMOST AS GOOD AS AN ACTUAL TRIP: THE TRAVEL NETWORK
- MOST POP-CULTURE-SAVVY FASHION TUMBLR: TEXTBOOK
- BEST BOYFRIEND TUMBLR: YOUR LL BEAN BOYFRIEND
Congrats everyone! Now go follow those tumblrs and get them up in yo’ dashboard. Sorry about the caps, btw, we copy/pasted straight from the website and did we feel like going through and rewriting these headilnes? No we did not. We are too busy applauding. Click through though to see what we wrote about each winner.
Some great picks in here!
test reblogged from newsweek
Background on the Yahoo-Tumblr deal
Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has been looking to revitalize Yahoo since hopping aboard last year, examining several companies for possible acquisition. But it wasn’t until early this morning that Yahoo’s big push to gain the trust of a younger online audience was finally confirmed with a $1.1-billion purchase of Tumblr.
But many of the Tumblr faithful are concerned about Yahoo’s shaky track record in properly handling fresh acquisitions:
Yahoo has a history of buying promising young companies only to let them waste away. Acquisitions under previous Yahoo chiefs such as Geocities, an early social networking site, and Flickr, the popular photo sharing website, were long neglected within the company.
Mayer, aware of the widespread concerns of an audience that contains many users who weren’t even alive when Yahoo began, maintains that Tumblr will be independent:
We promise not to screw it up. Tumblr is incredibly special and has a great thing going. We will operate Tumblr independently. David Karp will remain CEO. The product roadmap, their team, their wit and irreverence will all remain the same as will their mission to empower creators to make their best work and get it in front of the audience they deserve.
Read more on the Yahoo-Tumblr deal via tech reporter Jessica Guynn, or sound off below on whether Yahoo’s move is brilliant, or doomed to be a bust.