CLOSE
Illinois Institute of Technology
Illinois Institute of Technology

1986 College Newspaper Confirms People Have Always Been Jerks Online

Illinois Institute of Technology
Illinois Institute of Technology

What is it about the Internet that makes people act like jerks? (Not you, kind reader; we mean everybody else.) The anonymity granted by comment sections and social media networks often gets blamed, as does the general lack of consequence seen for bad online behavior. A Chinese study from 2013 showed that angrier posts on social media got shared more, meaning there may actually be incentive to being incendiary.

Whatever the reasons, one thing certainly is for sure: being a schmuck online isn’t a new phenomenon. This is evidenced by a 1986 story on “flaming” that appeared in Technology News [PDF], the Illinois Institute of Technology’s old student newspaper:

Technology News // May 5, 1986

Email as you or I know it wasn’t even around back then, as IIT had just installed a rudimentary, intra-campus messaging service. Still, even early adapters to the nascent Internet managed to behave like miserable little twits. Old habits, huh?

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
technology
Facebook Just Made It Easier to Tell the Difference Between Fake News and Real Reporting
iStock
iStock

On Facebook, fake news stories "reporting" international conflicts over Toblerones can appear alongside fact-checked journalism from trustworthy outlets. This leads to some bogus stories racking up thousands of shares while real news stories are deemed "fake" by those who disagree with them. With its latest news feature, Facebook aims to make the distinction between factual and fictional posts clearer.

As The Verge reports, articles shared on Facebook will now display a "trust indicator" icon. Clicking on it reveals information about the publisher of the piece, including their ethics statement, corrections policy, fact-checking process, ownership structures, and masthead. By providing that context, Facebook hopes that more users will make better decisions about which news outlets to trust and which to disregard.

The social media network is launching the feature with a handful of publishers and plans to open it up to more down the road. But unless it becomes mandatory for all media pages, it won't be the end of Facebook's fake news problem: Phony sites and real publishers that leave this information blank will still look the same in the eyes of some readers. Additionally, the feature only works when people go out of their way to check it, so it requires users to be skeptical in the first place.

If you want to avoid the fake news in your feed, looking for trust indicators is a good place to start. To further sharpen your BS-detecting skills, try adopting the CRAAP system: The American Library Association has been using it to spot sketchy sources since before the Facebook era.

[h/t The Verge]

nextArticle.image_alt|e
iStock
arrow
Live Smarter
How to Stop Instagram Photos From Automatically Posting to Facebook
iStock
iStock

If you have Instagram photos you don’t mind sharing with your aunts, exes, and former high school classmates, Facebook is the perfect place to post them. But some pictures are better suited to more intimate audiences: For those scenarios, you’ll want to unlink your Facebook from your Instagram account. The Daily Dot put together a simple how-to guide.

To keep your Instagram photos from automatically showing up on your Facebook profile, head to the Instagram app. Go to your profile, tap the gear icon next to Edit Profile, and then scroll down to the Linked Accounts option under Settings. If every photo you share through Instagram is published on Facebook, you should see Facebook highlighted in blue with a checkmark next to it under Linked Accounts. After tapping this, hit the Unlink Facebook button and Unlink a second time when the app asks you to confirm your decision.

Once that’s taken care of, any new posts you share through Instagram will only be seen by your Instagram followers (unless your account is linked to Twitter or some other social media site, in which case you can follow the same steps above). To undo this action, just return to Linked Accounts and tap Facebook to join the two accounts again.

This is a smart way to limit your social media presence or curb potential damage if hackers ever access your Instagram. But if you’re looking to distance yourself from Facebook because of issues you have with the site itself, simply unlinking it from Instagram won’t cut it. Facebook owns Instagram, so any information you post to either profile goes to the same place. There are better ways to control how Facebook handles your personal data. Read this to learn more about the social media giant’s ad targeting practices and what you can do about them.

[h/t The Daily Dot]

SECTIONS

arrow
LIVE SMARTER
More from mental floss studios