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Intellectual Takeout posted an excerpt from a fascinating article by James E. Miller at Takimag, sardonically titled: “Facebook is Not Watching You.”

Miller says social media, in particular Facebook, is altering our concept of the news.

Referencing an article from the Washington Post, Miller writes: “Facebook is using its algorithm to control the flow of news. While social media platforms like Twitter are broadcasting information in real time, Mark Zuckerberg’s brainchild is filtering ‘upsetting’ content – including the rash of violence in Ferguson. Think of it as a trigger warning to protect delicate sensibilities. Or more accurately: information suppression.”

Surprised? Now we learn that Facebook is manipulating the newsfeed via a new marketing ploy to disrupt how stories are spread. Instead, FB is boosting positive stories while suppressing negative content.

Miller writes that in a national crisis, the Internet serves as a community bulletin board: “Regarding Michael Brown, millions of opinions on the [#Ferguson] teenager’s death are popping up on social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Reddit. In all this proselytizing, armchair commentators are discovering something new: not all social networks are playing along.”

It’s a fascinating read. Especially if you’re a Facebook user, in which case, it’s a “must read.”

Fun photo tricks with your smart phone!

How do you snap a photo underwater with your smartphone? Create a panorama sequence? Create a zoom lens? Create a macro lens?

Photographer Lorenz Holder demonstrates seven creative photography tips and tricks using an iPhone 5S! You’ll be among more than two million who have viewed this video.

Facebook page of the week

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Together We Served: “TogetherWeServed.com is the largest military only network for active duty and veteran US military servicemen and women to reconnect and record a legacy of their military service. Commencing with the launch of its US Marines website on the Marine Corps Birthday in 2003, Togetherwerserved.com has produced a series of US Military heritage websites for each of the 5 major service branches – US Marine Corps, US Navy, US Air Force, US Army and US Coast Guard – and has over 1.3 Members.” – From the “about” section.

While you’re on this page, be sure to read “A Sailor’s Dying Wish”. If it doesn’t move you, I don’t know what will.

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Blog of the week

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My choice for this week’s pick has been around a while. The American Digest by Gerard Vanderleun debuted on the Internet in June 2003 with the inaugural post, “Do You Want Fries with That?”

Vanderleun is a popular blogger on the conservative side of things, imparting words of dry wit, wisdom, humor, and a kaleidoscope of topics. He’s generous with links too. American Digest is chock full, directing traffic to other blogs that Vanderleun finds interesting.

The only thing we could find about him on his site was this: “Coming Soon: 100 Facts About Gerard Van der Leun. A breathless world awaits. March, 2006.”

But now, the world no longer waits. Vanderleun’s impressive profile is here.

Last Saturday he posted a brief, headlined “The Medium Is the Message”: “When you move your home, the most important tool turns out to be a twenty dollar bill. Lots of them. Collecting a stack from the bank yesterday, this one turned up.”

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“What’s in your wallet?” he asks.

Funny he would ask. I recently found this in my wallet.

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Check out American Digest. You’ll like it.

140901ice-creamI scream, you  scream, we all scream for ice cream!

Find the best ice cream shops in your state on this interactive map assembled as a result of thousands of PBS fans who nominated their favorite ice cream shops in America.

Lest you think the cold and creamy treat is bad for you, here are some reasons why it is healthy!

  • Bone-strengthening calcium (10 percent daily recommended value in ½ cup)
  • Vitamins D, A, B12 and K
  • Protein (10 percent daily recommended value in ½ cup)
  • Low glycemic index (meaning that there is less chance you’ll have blood sugar spikes and drops associated with most carbohydrates.)

If you must indulge, the healthiest ice creams are Haagen-Dazs Mango Fat Free Sorbet; Ben & Jerry’s Black Raspberry Swirl Low Fat Frozen Yogurt; Ben & Jerry’s Strawberry Ice Cream; Baskins-Robbins Light Aloha Brownie Ice Cream; and Haagen-Dazs Cranberry Blueberry Fat Free Sorbet.

Amounts are given in half-cup measures. Now you tell me, can you be satisfied with a measly half cup of ice cream? That’s equal to a scoop the size of one of Obama’s golf balls!

“This is exasperating!”

One of the funniest videos you’ll see today is this little guy’s reaction when his mother tells him she’s expecting another baby. To say he’s not too happy about it would be an understatement. Posted on YouTube on August 20, it has been viewed 1,753,386 times as of this writing.

“This makes no sense!” he storms, as he next demands earplugs to protect against another squalling baby. “This is exasperating.”

Watch it. It’s hilarious.

 

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