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  • Singapore’s misinformation law
  • Wildfire of Australia misinformation
  • The Murdoch rift on climate change
  • FB political ad controversy continues
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The Conversation
Online misinformation works, or so it would seem. One of the more interesting statistics from the 2019 UK general election was that 88% of advertisements posted on social media by the Conservative Party pushed figures that had already been deemed misleading by the UK’s leading fact-checking organisation, Full Fact. And, of course, the Conservatives won the election by a comfortable margin.

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The Guardian
The intense disinformation campaign online about the causes of the bushfires is a mad scramble from interests that are vested in ongoing climate denial

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The Guardian
A misleading figure suggesting 183 arsonists have been arrested “since the start of the bushfire season” spread across the globe on Wednesday, after initial reports in News Corp were picked up by Donald Trump Jr, US far-right websites and popular alt-right personalities.

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AP
The theory took root in vague form well before Donald Trump laid claim to the White House in 2016. The candidate’s close confidant tweeted about it. His campaign chairman apparently spoke about it with people close to him

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The Conversation
Last week, Netflix dropped the trailer for Gwyneth Paltrow’s new show The Goop Lab. It is a six-episode docuseries launching on Jan. 24 that, according to the trailers, focuses on approaches to wellness that are “out there,” “unregulated” and “dangerous.” (Read: science-free.)

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Washington Post
The Trump administration has for nearly two years ignored mounting evidence that Russian operatives and other foreign actors were deliberately targeting U.S. troops and veterans with online disinformation amplified on a massive scale, a leading veterans group said.

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The Guardian
Iran’s missile attacks on two Iraqi airbases have been accompanied by a spread of online disinformation, falsely labelled images and claims of news sources being hacked, which have added to jitters in the region regarding the attacks.

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Taipei Times
Taiwan People’s Party (TPP) Secretary-General Chang Jer-yang (張哲揚) yesterday filed a lawsuit over an online article claiming that China Central Television (CCTV) is backing the party in Saturday’s legislative elections.

Editor’s Note: One of the first elections of the year was held in Taiwan. Here the Taipei Times covers the controversy over the alleged preference of China’s CCTV in the contest.

AP
SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook has decided not to limit how political ads can be targeted to specific groups of people, as its main digital-ad rival Google did in November to fight misinformation. Neither will it ban political ads outright, as Twitter did last October. And it still won’t fact check them, as it’s faced pressure to do.

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AFP
A Singaporean opposition party has mounted the first legal challenge against an online misinformation law that activists have said is being used to silence criticism of the government ahead of elections.

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CNN
White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham has rebuffed a recent CNN opinion piece from 13 former White House press secretaries, foreign service and military officials arguing for the return of daily press briefings.

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AFP
“So disappointed that #MarkZuckerberg values profit more than truthfulness that I’ve decided to delete my Facebook account,” Hamill tweeted Sunday evening.

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AZ Jewish Post
Only 12 states currently require schools to teach students about the Holocaust. Michael Beller and Josh Kay, the founders of Arizona Teaching the Holocaust, want to make Arizona state number 13.

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Rappler
MANILA, Philippines – Does fact checking make an impact? Publishers are concerned that it doesn’t, even though they think the media should do more to call out lies and half-truths made by politicians.

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The Guardian
Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp and Fox cited for ‘frustrating’ coverage of Australian bushfires

Editor’s Note: Several of the articles on this list deal with climate change and the Australian bushfires. Here the Guardian gives an in-depth look to the role of James Murdoch criticizing the stance of his father’s newspapers in their homeland.

Boing Boing
Everyone knows Facebook is doing the opposite of helping ensure the integrity of the 2020 election, so it makes sense it would pay Teen Vogue to run a fake article titled “How Facebook Is Helping Ensure the Integrity of the 2020 Election.”

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AFP
Photo: Marcus Yam/Los Angeles Times via Getty Images

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The New York Times
WOMBEYAN CAVES, Australia – Deep in the burning forests south of Sydney last week, volunteer firefighters were clearing a track through the woods, hoping to hold back a nearby blaze, when one of them shouted over the crunching of bulldozers.

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Reuters
JAKARTA/LONDON – As Indonesia celebrated its National Heroes’ Day last year, official military social media accounts lavished praise on Corporal Yunanto Nugroho for the “myriad awards he has won in the field of IT.”

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AFP
A senior Facebook executive on Tuesday said the world’s biggest social network unintentionally helped put Donald Trump in the White House but warned against dramatic rule changes.

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Rappler
Currently in test phase, the feature lets you choose whether you want everybody to be able to reply, just your followers, or no one at all

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The Conversation
Kenyan president Uhuru Kenyatta recently signed into law the Data Protection Bill. Passed after several years of debate and delay, the new law places restrictions on the collection and use of digital data by governments and private corporations. The restrictions are similar to those included in a new data protection regulation passed by Nigeria this year

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Rappler
Claim: A magnitude 7.8 earthquake will supposedly hit on Wednesday, January 15, affecting 15 cities in Luzon.

Editor’s Note: Rappler, based in the Philippines, has made it its business to cover misinformation. Here they look at claims that an earthquake could be predicted for today, January 15, after activity at the Taal Volcano.

The Guardian
Two big announcements were made in the US political media this week, and the outcome of one will likely have a profound effect on the 2020 election. The New York Times announced the process and date for revealing which candidate it will endorse on the very crowded Democratic ticket, and Facebook reiterated its policies (or maybe lack of them) on political advertising.

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Reuters
SAN FRANCISCO – Popular video-sharing app TikTok issued a broad ban on Jan 8 against “misleading information” that could cause harm to its community or the public, setting itself apart from rivals like Facebook which say that they do not want to be arbiters of truth.

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