Behind the Blog: Corporate PR Stonewalling and The Sandwich Simulacrum
Behind The Blog

Behind the Blog: Corporate PR Stonewalling and The Sandwich Simulacrum

This is Behind the Blog, where we share our behind-the-scenes thoughts about how a few of our top stories of the week came together. This week, we discuss the corporate PR strategy of stonewalling the press, digital comradery, and the AI sandwich simulacrum.
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Behind the Blog: Corporate PR Stonewalling and The Sandwich Simulacrum
Behind The Blog

Behind the Blog: Corporate PR Stonewalling and The Sandwich Simulacrum

This is Behind the Blog, where we share our behind-the-scenes thoughts about how a few of our top stories of the week came together. This week, we discuss the corporate PR strategy of stonewalling the press, digital comradery, and the AI sandwich simulacrum.
A WordPress ‘Firehose’ Allows AI Companies to Buy Access to a Million Posts a Day
automattic

A WordPress ‘Firehose’ Allows AI Companies to Buy Access to a Million Posts a Day

There is a complex chain of companies buying access to WordPress and Tumblr posts through a company called SocialGist.
Unionized YouTube Workers Learn Google Laid Them All Off During City Council Meeting
YouTube

Unionized YouTube Workers Learn Google Laid Them All Off During City Council Meeting

“They just laid us all off. Our jobs are ended today. Effective immediately.” A bell rings. “I’m sorry, your time has expired."
Israeli Soldiers Are Posting Tinder Profile Pictures From Gaza
News

Israeli Soldiers Are Posting Tinder Profile Pictures From Gaza

“This is contributing to the whole normalizing of anti-Palestinian racism, and downgrading of Palestinians as if they are not human beings.”
Watch This Guy Play ‘Doom’ on a Toothbrush
doom

Watch This Guy Play ‘Doom’ on a Toothbrush

The three million toothbrush botnet wasn’t real, but this toothbrush hacked for blasting demons between brushes is.
Amazon Turkers Who Train AI Say They’re Locked Out of Their Work and Money
News

Amazon Turkers Who Train AI Say They’re Locked Out of Their Work and Money

“Our labor is what makes AI work, and it could not function without us. We are the data that makes the machine work.”
TikTok Literally Silences Cat Janice, Pop Star Who Died of Cancer, Because of Licensing Dispute
TikTok

TikTok Literally Silences Cat Janice, Pop Star Who Died of Cancer, Because of Licensing Dispute

The fallout of a TikTok licensing dispute with Universal Music Group is not just the loss of backing soundtracks, but things like Janice talking about her fight with cancer, over music that she herself created. 
Fanfiction Community Rocked By Etsy Sellers Turning Their Work Into Bound Books
etsy

Fanfiction Community Rocked By Etsy Sellers Turning Their Work Into Bound Books

Several popular shops, which clearly violated Etsy's terms of use and IP laws, were deleted after 404 Media reached out for comment.
AI-Generated Kara Swisher Biographies Flood Amazon
News

AI-Generated Kara Swisher Biographies Flood Amazon

Why Read Swisher’s Burn Book when you can read KARA SWISHER : The Heroic Biography of a defining force in Tech Journalism (The Silicon Valley’s most powerful tech journalist).
Tumblr and WordPress to Sell Users’ Data to Train AI Tools
tumblr

Tumblr and WordPress to Sell Users’ Data to Train AI Tools

Internal documents obtained by 404 Media show that Tumblr staff compiled users' data as part of a deal with Midjourney and OpenAI.
Ghost Kitchens Are Advertising AI-Generated Food on DoorDash and Grubhub
News

Ghost Kitchens Are Advertising AI-Generated Food on DoorDash and Grubhub

Reality bending, AI-generated cheesesteaks and pasta dishes are flooding food delivery services.
Podcast: Byron Tau on the New U.S. Surveillance State
Podcast

Podcast: Byron Tau on the New U.S. Surveillance State

We're trying out a new interview episode for the podcast! Our first guest is investigative journalist and author Byron Tau on the adtech surveillance industry.