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Berkman Buzz: May 30, 2014

May 30, 2014

The Berkman Buzz is selected weekly from the posts of Berkman Center people and projects.
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Rey Junco argues sexting isn't as big a problem as it seems

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American society has a double standard when it comes to sexuality. We have a puritanical taboo against talking about sexuality directly, yet we are fine with the sexual images that pervade television and glossy magazines.

We sexualize children in advertising by turning girls into objects that bear little resemblance to what young women actually look like. And we do this in movies where even animated characters take on curvaceous hips and big breasts.

But then when it comes to our kids having some kind of sexual identity, we freak out. That needs to stop.

From Rey Junco's piece for CNN Opinion, "What's the big deal about sexting?"
About Rey | @reyjunco

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"the most joyless new technology to hit the world since we first laid eyes on MS-DOS." @nytimes on #Soylent #dumb http://t.co/lqYwdWc4jx
Baratunde Thurston (@baratunde)

Willow Brugh reflects on #YesAllWomen

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It is vital to make it clear that the objectification of, violence against, etc+preposition, women is absolutely unacceptable, and that continuance is untenable. It is possible, even necessary, in the same moment and breath, to have empathy for the fear experienced by being on the other side of the coin of these atrocities. How dehumanizing it must be to be expected to treat other human beings as objects. And most of the language we have around this phenomena is in Feminism, which is villainized during the propagation of these issues. How can one make use of tools closed off by the simple fact of where and when and with whom they grew up?

These issues are systemic, a positive (not “yay”, but “self-reinforcing”) feedback loop. (Not the only components in this feedback loop, clearly). Until we address the root cause for women being cautious of men – the high likelihood of violence being inflicted upon them – that caution is a legitimate response to a very real threat. We must make our way up Maslow’s Hierarchy of needs – not in series, but in parallel, with a focus on the more dire.

From Willow Brugh's blog post, "The Fears of Inequality"
About Willow | @willowbl00

Susan Crawford + team release new report on community fiber

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Most Americans don’t know how much better our data-transport story could be — because they haven’t been to the places around the world where cheap unlimited symmetric communications capacity is taken for granted.

This is a social issue that undermines everything we want to accomplish as a country: response to climate change, better educational outcomes, reduction of inequality, creation of new jobs, creation of greater public trust…

Here’s the good news: Many mayors in America are unwilling to settle for this situation. They’re considering clearing the way for fiber networks to be built by public or private entities that use city conduit, pole access, and other assets. (There are already more than 400 communities across the country with their own networks serving local businesses and/or residents.)

From Susan Crawford's blog post, "Fiber by cities: Washington DC, San Francisco, Seattle"
About Susan | @scrawford

Bruce Schneier: "The NSA is Not Made of Magic"

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I am regularly asked what is the most surprising thing about the Snowden NSA documents. It's this: the NSA is not made of magic. Its tools are no different from what we have in our world, it's just better-funded. X-KEYSCORE is Bro plus memory. FOXACID is Metasploit with a budget. QUANTUM is AirPwn with a seriously privileged position on the backbone. The NSA breaks crypto not with super-secret cryptanalysis, but by using standard hacking tricks such as exploiting weak implementations and default keys.

From Bruce Schneier's blog post, "The NSA is Not Made of Magic"
About Bruce | @schneierblog

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power of ideas, experiments & networks--not organizations! great piece on @berkmancenter alum troublemaker @timhwang http://t.co/CKxJXACYdGColin Maclay (@cmac)

What Happens When a Muslim, Jew, Christian, Atheist and Agnostic Travel the World Together?

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Victor, Josselin, Samuel, Ilan and Ismael are atheist, agnostic, Christian, Jewish and Muslim, in that order. With religious tolerance in mind, the five twenty-something French students, decided to travel across the world from July 2013 to June 2014 for their Interfaith Tour. The goal? To raise awareness of the many interfaith projects already out there making a difference.

In French-language interviews with Global Voices, the group offered details on the project and described their experiences along the way.

From Elise Lecamp's post for Global Voices (translated by Rakotomalala), "What Happens When a Muslim, Jew, Christian, Atheist and Agnostic Travel the World Together?"
About Global Voices Online | @globalvoices

This Buzz was compiled by Rebekah Heacock.

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Last updated May 30, 2014