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India Is Ground Zero for the Irresistible Appeal of Sanctioned Deepfakes

India Is Ground Zero For the Irresistible Appeal of Sanctioned Deepfakes

The biggest AI story this week was the showdown between Open AI and actress Scarlett Johansson over the use of a voice concerningly similar to hers after she had refused to collaborate with Open AI. This is quickly becoming a recurring typical deepfake story: someone steals the likeness of a famous person, and that person … Read more

How To Overhaul Presidential Debates? Stop Pretending it’s a Debate.

How To Overhaul Presidential Debates_ Stop Pretending it's a Debate

This past week both political parties agreed to hold a Presidential debate between President Biden and former President Trump. Many observers are already criticizing it as a waste of time and unlikely to change anyone’s mind. They are probably right, but what if they weren’t? The idea of giving the public a chance to hear directly from … Read more

What The New Ban on Non-Competes Actually Means for Companies

Banning noncompetes

This week the FTC issued a rule this week that bans non-compete clauses, estimating that up to 8,500 new startups will be created as a result of the ban. The federal agency describes the downsides of non-competes this way:  “Noncompetes are a widespread and often exploitative practice imposing contractual conditions that prevent workers from taking a … Read more

Should Prisoners Be Allowed to Use Social Media? Inside the #JailTok Movement and Debate

Should Prisoners Be Allowed To Use Social Media

There is legislation under consideration in the UK that would have “harmful content filmed inside prisons removed from social media platforms more quickly.” It stems from a disturbing case where a woman saw a video of her son’s killer rapping from prison and mocking the justice system. There are plenty of other videos on the #jailtok hashtag that show … Read more

This Brilliant Nonprofit Might Have the Answer to Solve America’s Political Division

This Brilliant Nonprofit Might Have The Answer To Solve America's Political Division

The widely publicized death of local news has created a knowledge and truth void when it comes to very important public questions. Like how are your tax dollars being spent? And what decisions are being made on a local level that affect your life and your community? Unless you happen to be a citizen with a deep … Read more

The 2024 Soft Power Survey Honors Countries Who Still Practice the Art of Diplomacy in Complex Times

The 2024 Soft Power Survey Honors Countries Who Still Practice the Art of Diplomacy In Complex Times

Pandas have long been used as a symbol of international cooperation. Known as “envoys of friendship,” the loaning of pandas from China to other nations was so popular for a time that it inspired the term “panda diplomacy” as a way to describe what is otherwise termed in geopolitical circles as “soft power.” This is … Read more

Do People Vote for Candidates Who Look Like Them?

Candidate ethnicity

There have been several studies in the past that found people tend to prefer going to doctors who share their same ethnic background. This doesn’t seem to be true when it comes to politics, as an interesting article from TIME magazine points out this week by focusing on politicians of Indian origin who are part of the Presidential … Read more

Extreme Pride in Being American Remains Near Record Low

A new Gallup poll released just in time for the 4th of July leads with the eye-catching headline that extreme pride in being American is at a record low. As often is the case with sensational headline summaries like this, the true insight of the poll is buried further in the results. First of all, while … Read more

The Most Popular Non-Obvious Stories of 2022 (Based On Reader Feedback)

Based on this combination of quantitative and qualitative data, here is a partial list of some of the most popular stories of the year, based on what my readers shared.

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