Stuff Big And Small

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Denialism: what drives people to reject the truth

We are all in denial, some of the time at least. Part of being human, and living in a society with other humans, is finding clever ways to express – and conceal – our feelings. From the most sophisticated diplomatic language to the baldest lie, humans find ways to deceive. Deceptions are not …

Climate

'Fiction is outperforming reality': how YouTube's algorithm distorts truth

The algorithm does not appear to be optimising for what is truthful, or balanced, or healthy for democracy Guillaume Chaslot, an ex-Google engineer<p>It was one of January’s most viral videos. Logan Paul, a YouTube celebrity, stumbles across a dead man hanging from a tree. The 22-year-old, who is in a …

Internet

The Visionless Society

Imagine yourself in early 2019. The Democrats, despite never articulating a political vision other than not being Donald Trump and refusing to roll …

Stop reading what Facebook tells you to read

<i>An open memo, to all marginally-smart people/consumers of internet "content":</i><p>Hi.<p>Some questions. Do you...<p>Want the internet to be better in 2018?<p>Want …

The Warlock Hunt

#Metoo, of course. Women are not going nuts for no reason. We’re fed up with feeling prickles down our spine as we walk alone on dimly lit streets. …

Sexual Harassment

The death of the internet

If we lose this, we lose everything.<p>When I was very young, before I was on the internet — even before the internet was really a thing you could “go …

YouTube’s algorithms are terrorizing a generation of children

<i>Please be advised: This essay describes disturbing things and links to disturbing graphic and video content. You don’t have to read it, and are advised to take caution exploring further.</i><p>As someone who grew up on the internet, I credit it as one of the most important influences on who I am today. I …

Internet

The corrosion of truth in these strange times is terrifying | Richard Flanagan

Lies have become alternative facts and truth irrelevant in the face of power, while we all give up our privacy<p>In Book 8 of The Odyssey we read that the gods weave misfortune so that later generations have something to sing about.<p>It wasn’t a god but a conman who now leads me to describe how – some …

Google wants to run cities without being elected. Don't let it | Jathan Sadowski

Alphabet, the parent company of Google, does not suffer from a lack of ambition. Its subsidiaries are tackling topics ranging from autonomous vehicles to smart homes, artificial intelligence to biotech life extension. So perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise that Alphabet has decided it will plan, …

Smart Cities

Google’s plan to revolutionise cities is a takeover in all but name

Last June Volume, a leading magazine on architecture and design, published an article on the GoogleUrbanism project. Conceived at a renowned design institute in Moscow, the project charts a plausible urban future based on cities acting as important sites for “data extractivism” – the conversion of …

'Our minds can be hijacked': the tech insiders who fear a smartphone dystopia

Google, Twitter and Facebook workers who helped make technology so addictive are disconnecting themselves from the internet. <b>Paul Lewis</b> reports on the Silicon Valley refuseniks alarmed by a race for human attention<p>Justin Rosenstein had tweaked his laptop’s operating system to block Reddit, banned …

Social Media

Israel-Palestine: the real reason there’s still no peace

The possibility of a lasting deal seems as far away as ever – and the history of failed negotiations suggests it’s largely because Israel prefers the status quo<p>Scattered over the land between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean Sea lie the remnants of failed peace plans, international summits, …

Israel

The great digital-age swindle… and the man fighting back

He was tour manager for the Band, producer of Mean Streets… so why, at nearly 70, is Jonathan Taplin taking on Facebook and co?<p>We are all – or nearly all – slaves to technology. Think about how many times you consult Google every day. Consider the role that social media like Facebook and Twitter …

Social Media

Is Your City Being Sold Off to Global Elites?

"See the little pair of shoes?" Kerry Starchuk brings her minivan to a halt before a sprawling manse with antebellum columns and a cast-iron fence …

Real Estate

Liberals gave investors ‘extraordinary control’ over infrastructure bank: opposition

Opposition parties accused the Liberal government of being too cozy with global wealth funds, after documents revealed extensive interactions between investors and federal officials in the planning and promotion of the Canada Infrastructure Bank.<p>Both the Conservatives and NDP raised the issue …

Always fresh? Canada's Tim Hortons coffee chain steams into UK

Canadian company Tim Hortons is to open its first UK coffee shop in May, entering the crowded but still growing British market for food and drink on the go.<p>Promising to bring its “signature coffee, delicious food and Canadian charm” to the UK, the chain’s first UK coffee shop – also its first in …

10 of Canada's best lesser-known national parks

To mark its 150th anniversary, Canada is offering free entry to its stunning national parks. But which to pick? We select 10 lesser-known wildernesses<p>Canada has vast swathes of unspoiled nature, from coasts to mountains to tundra and frozen Arctic deserts. While some of these spectacular landscapes …

Blame Canada: Trudeau forced on defensive as Trump targets trade

When asked this week what he had learned about Donald Trump during the US president’s first months in power, Justin Trudeau paused.<p>“I’ve learned that he listens,” the Canadian prime minister replied after a few seconds. “He is a little bit unlike many politicians.”<p>As laughter broke out among the …

Stop swooning over Justin Trudeau. The man is a disaster for the planet | Bill McKibben

Donald Trump is so spectacularly horrible that it’s hard to look away – especially now that he’s discovered bombs. But precisely because everyone’s staring gape-mouthed in his direction, other world leaders are able to get away with almost anything. Don’t believe me? Look one country north, at …

Canadian province makes it illegal to require women to wear high heels

The provincial government in British Columbia, Canada, has amended workplace legislation to prevent employers to force women to wear high heels at work.<p>BC Green party leader Andrew Weaver filed a private member’s bill in March “designed to prevent employers from setting varying footwear and other …

New Brunswick becomes first Canada province to offer free abortion pill

New Brunswick has become the first province in Canada to distribute an abortion pill for free, in a major step for a region that previously had one of the country’s strictest policies on women’s reproductive rights.<p>The provincial health minister, Victor Boudreau, unveiled the policy on Tuesday, …

Abortion, Holocaust comparison prompts calls for sex ed investigation in Alberta

Sexual health advocates are calling for a provincewide investigation of Alberta's sex education curriculum after a video comparing abortion to the …

Trump's immigration policies are opening a door to the Silicon Valley of the North

It's a startup founder's dream: a community of 2,500 early-stage tech companies, a government investing in high-tech innovation and expediting work permits, and venture-capital investment levels not seen since the heyday of the dot-com bubble.<p>This isn't San Francisco, New York, or London — it's …

Silicon Valley

These 10 companies control everything you buy

These companies — Nestlé, PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, Unilever, Danone, General Mills, Kellogg's, Mars, Associated British Foods, and Mondelez — each employ thousands and make billions of dollars in revenue every year.<p>In an effort to push these companies to make positive changes — and for customers to …

General Mills

Someone is spying on cellphones in the nation's capital

A months-long CBC News/Radio-Canada investigation has revealed that someone is using devices that track and spy on cellphones in the area around …

Landlords fear property values will go up in smoke with marijuana legalization

Marijuana could be legal in Canada as early as next summer, and landlords are already concerned that new laws could pose risks to their property.<p>The …

CIBC CEO explains why bank is replacing Canadian staff with workers from India

CIBC's CEO issued an internal staff memo Friday to address a CBC News story revealing that the bank is eliminating up to 130 Toronto finance jobs and …

The wild west of weed: will legalisation work for Canada?

Opposite a bleak government building in suburban Ottawa, Canada, a barebones “cannabis clinic” – with just a cash register, jeweller’s scales and a glass counter – is doing a brisk trade. “Pirate! Muslim! Gangster! Yes! We all smoke!” shouts one teen as he high-fives the owner, Rohmi. He pockets …

Historical ban on potlatch ceremony has lingering effects for Indigenous women, author says

The effects of a decades-long ban that dates back to the 19th century on a traditional First Nations ceremony are still being felt today, …