Mount Sinai medical system's Dr. Ash Tewari and his team send ventilators and oxygen equipment to save lives
To honor the second birthday of their son Archie, Meghan Markle and Prince Harry have come up with an extra special way for their supporters across the globe to show their love by supporting a good cause. “We have been deeply touched over the past two years to feel the warmth and support for our family in honor of Archie’s birthday,” Meghan, 39, and Harry, 36, wrote Thursday on their Archewell Foundation website.
Shareholders voted against outgoing boss's $10m bonus after sacred Aboriginal shelters were destroyed.
- The Independent
The former mayor is facing mounting legal fees from divorces and a major defamation lawsuit
- USA TODAY
These are the best secured credits cards to build or rebuild credit with low APRs, minimal fees, and other rewards.
- The Independent
Ilhan Omar says Democrats need to grow ‘backbone’ and abolish filibuster to overcome Republican opposition
Minnesota progressive says quibbling about bipartisanship is a waste of time given intense Republican opposite to the Biden agenda
- The Independent
American officials waiting for Tehran to accept conditions in negotiations in fresh round of nuclear deal talks aiming to reinstate 2015 deal, says State Department
- USA TODAY
And another thing: Is private equity speculating on the West's water?
- The Independent
Former military man was self-described ‘anarchist’ and a trained sniper
- The Independent
The governor said he believes his state has the ‘strongest election integrity’ in the US
- The Telegraph
Friday evening UK news briefing: Keir Starmer admits Labour 'lost connection' with voters after Hartlepool defeat
Sir Keir Starmer is facing an onslaught from both sides of Labour over its devastating by-election defeat, as the Left mocked his "flag waving and suit wearing" and moderates demanded he talk more about aspiration. Heavy criticism was heaped on the Labour leader after the party ceded Hartlepool to the Conservatives for the first time since the seat's creation in 1974. Sir Keir said the party must stop "quarrelling among ourselves" and he is expected to reshuffle his front bench next month. Political Editor Ben Riley-Smith outlines seven uncomfortable questions Labour must answer. Joe Shute found out why the people of Hartlepool decided to vote Tory, with the town's new MP saying today that Labour "took Hartlepool for granted" for 47 years. Yet Tony Diver details how Jill Mortimer, pictured below left alongside Boris Johnson and a giant blow up version of the PM, could prove to be a thorn in the side for the Tories. Sherelle Jacobs writes the revolt against Labour is bigger than Brexit.
The Hollywood award organisers have been criticised for their lack of diversity and shadowy workings.
- USA TODAY
Loved "How I Met Your Mother" and wish it was still on? You can watch the Hilary Duff-led spinoff, "How I Met Your Father," on Hulu. Here's how.
- USA TODAY
White people in the U.S. continue to be vaccinated at faster rates than people of color, data shows. More need to be done to reach them, experts say.
- The New York Times
There’s a decent chance you’ve had at least one of these rumors, all false, relayed to you as fact recently: that President Joe Biden plans to force Americans to eat less meat; that Virginia is eliminating advanced math in schools to advance racial equality; and that border officials are mass-purchasing copies of Vice President Kamala Harris’ book to hand out to refugee children. All were amplified by partisan actors. But you’re just as likely, if not more so, to have heard it relayed from someone you know. And you may have noticed that these cycles of falsehood-fueled outrage keep recurring. Sign up for The Morning newsletter from the New York Times We are in an era of endemic misinformation — and outright disinformation. Plenty of bad actors are helping the trend along. But the real drivers, some experts believe, are social and psychological forces that make people prone to sharing and believing misinformation in the first place. And those forces are only on the rise. “Why are misperceptions about contentious issues in politics and science seemingly so persistent and difficult to correct?” Brendan Nyhan, a Dartmouth College political scientist, posed in a new paper in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. It’s not for want of good information, which is ubiquitous. Exposure to good information does not reliably instill accurate beliefs anyway. Rather, Nyhan writes, a growing body of evidence suggests that the ultimate culprits are “cognitive and memory limitations, directional motivations to defend or support some group identity or existing belief, and messages from other people and political elites.” Put more simply, people become more prone to misinformation when three things happen. First, and perhaps most important, is when conditions in society make people feel a greater need for what social scientists call ingrouping — a belief that their social identity is a source of strength and superiority, and that other groups can be blamed for their problems. As much as we like to think of ourselves as rational beings who put truth-seeking above all else, we are social animals wired for survival. In times of perceived conflict or social change, we seek security in groups. And that makes us eager to consume information, true or not, that lets us see the world as a conflict putting our righteous ingroup against a nefarious outgroup. This need can emerge especially out of a sense of social destabilization. As a result, misinformation is often prevalent among communities that feel destabilized by unwanted change or, in the case of some minorities, powerless in the face of dominant forces. Framing everything as a grand conflict against scheming enemies can feel enormously reassuring. And that’s why perhaps the greatest culprit of our era of misinformation may be, more than any one particular misinformer, the era-defining rise in social polarization. “At the mass level, greater partisan divisions in social identity are generating intense hostility toward opposition partisans,” which has “seemingly increased the political system’s vulnerability to partisan misinformation,” Nyhan wrote in an earlier paper. Growing hostility between the two halves of America feeds social distrust, which makes people more prone to rumor and falsehood. It also makes people cling much more tightly to their partisan identities. And once our brains switch into “identity-based conflict” mode, we become desperately hungry for information that will affirm that sense of us versus them, and much less concerned about things like truth or accuracy. In an email, Nyhan said it can be methodologically difficult to nail down the precise relationship between overall polarization in society and overall misinformation, but there is abundant evidence that an individual with more polarized views becomes more prone to believing falsehoods. The second driver of the misinformation era is the emergence of high-profile political figures who encourage their followers to go ahead and indulge their desire for identity-affirming misinformation. After all, an atmosphere of all-out political conflict often benefits those leaders, at least in the short term, by rallying people behind them. And then there is the third factor — a shift to social media, which is a powerful outlet for composers of disinformation, a pervasive vector for misinformation itself and a multiplier of the other risk factors. “Media has changed, the environment has changed, and that has a potentially big impact on our natural behavior,” said William Brady, a Yale University social psychologist. “When you post things, you’re highly aware of the feedback that you get, the social feedback in terms of likes and shares,” Brady said. So when misinformation appeals to social impulses more than the truth does, it gets more attention online, which means people feel rewarded and encouraged for spreading it. “Depending on the platform, especially, humans are very sensitive to social reward,” he said. Research demonstrates that people who get positive feedback for posting inflammatory or false statements become much likelier to do so again in the future. “You are affected by that.” In 2016, media scholars Jieun Shin and Kjerstin Thorson analyzed a dataset of 300 million tweets from the 2012 election. Twitter users, they found, “selectively share fact-checking messages that cheerlead their own candidate and denigrate the opposing party’s candidate.” And when users encountered a fact-check that revealed their candidate had gotten something wrong, their response wasn’t to get mad at the politician for lying. It was to attack the fact checkers. “We have found that Twitter users tend to retweet to show approval, argue, gain attention and entertain,” researcher Jon-Patrick Allem wrote last year, summarizing a study he had co-authored. “Truthfulness of a post or accuracy of a claim was not an identified motivation for retweeting.” In another study, published last month in Nature, a team of psychologists tracked thousands of users interacting with false information. Republican test subjects who were shown a false headline about migrants trying to enter the United States (“Over 500 ‘Migrant Caravaners’ Arrested With Suicide Vests”) mostly identified it as false; only 16% called it accurate. But if the experimenters instead asked the subjects to decide whether to share the headline, 51% said they would. “Most people do not want to spread misinformation,” the study’s authors wrote. “But the social media context focuses their attention on factors other than truth and accuracy.” In a highly polarized society like today’s United States — or, for that matter, India or parts of Europe — those incentives pull heavily toward ingroup solidarity and outgroup derogation. They do not much favor consensus reality or abstract ideals of accuracy. As people get more prone to misinformation, opportunists and charlatans are also getting better at exploiting this. That can mean tear-it-all-down populists who rise on promises to smash the establishment and control minorities. It can also mean government agencies or freelance hacker groups stirring up social divisions abroad for their benefit. But the roots of the crisis go deeper. “The problem is that when we encounter opposing views in the age and context of social media, it’s not like reading them in a newspaper while sitting alone,” sociologist Zeynep Tufekci wrote in a much-circulated MIT Technology Review article. “It’s like hearing them from the opposing team while sitting with our fellow fans in a football stadium. Online, we’re connected with our communities, and we seek approval from our like-minded peers. We bond with our team by yelling at the fans of the other one.” In an ecosystem where that sense of identity conflict is all-consuming, she wrote, “belonging is stronger than facts.” This article originally appeared in The New York Times. © 2021 The New York Times Company
- The Independent
What will happen to the George Floyd memorial – and all the others of Black men killed by Minneapolis police?
For every George Floyd there are countless other killings that receive minimal publicity, writes Andrew Buncombe in Minneapolis
- Architectural Digest
From Quebec to California, these unique properties are reaching new heights—and they're all on the market Originally Appeared on Architectural Digest
- The Independent
Texas follows Florida in passing voting restrictions based on Trump’s ‘Big Lie’ after late-night debate
Texas becomes the latest red state to introduce tighter voting rules following the 2020 election where Republicans lost the White House and the Senate
- Business Insider
A Capitol riot suspect yelled 'f--- all of you!' at his Zoom court hearing then hung up on the judge, reports say
Landon Copeland caused chaos in his Zoom hearing and disrupted other sessions on Thursday, reports said.
- Associated Press
The company says the order by Gov. Ron DeSantis is at odds with guidelines from federal health authorities that would let cruise ships sail in U.S. waters if nearly all passengers and crew members are vaccinated. “It is a classic state-versus-federal-government issue,” says Frank Del Rio, CEO of parent Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings.
- The Week
Conservatives say McConnell is battling the Democrats' voting rights bill with 'Supreme Court fight' fervor
Florida on Thursday joined Georgia in enacting a sweeping Republican election law that constricts voting rights in the state, and Texas, which already had some of the most stringent voting laws in the country, is on the cusp of joining them. Democrats were not able to stop the new voting laws in the country's biggest red states, but House Democrats passed their own countervailing national voting rights legislation, the "For the People Act" or HR1, in March, and Senate Democrats are working on their own version, S1. When Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) said Wednesday that "100 percent of my focus is on stopping this new administration," these voting reform bills might have been what he had in mind. McConnell has publicly and privately conveyed his fervent opposition to the legislation. But "what's different, conservatives say, is his personal level of commitment behind-the-scenes to educate activists on just how damaging the legislation would be to the future electoral prospects of Republicans," McClatchy D.C. reports. "So many times the conservative movement only works with McConnell when it's a Supreme Court nomination, or a Supreme Court fight," Jessica Anderson, executive director of Heritage Action, tells McClatchy. "And so we've been trying to change that with HR 1 and S1 and really make this fight similar and more akin to a Supreme Court fight, where it's like an all-hands-on-deck effort." As the Senate prepares to mark up the legislation in the Rules & Administration Committee next week, "some progressives have warned that McConnell is taking the legislation more seriously than even Democrats are," McClatchy reports. "At the moment, McConnell looks to hold the advantage," with moderate Democrats "fretting about the sheer size of the bill" and Republicans confident Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) will side with them in the 50-50 Senate. More stories from theweek.com5 brutally funny cartoons about the GOP's shunning of Liz CheneyThe insurrectionists are winningLiz Cheney's heresy