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24 pointers to updates, useful stuff, research news, and more. – ResearchBuzz

Please wear a mask (or even two). Wash your hands. Stay at home if you can. Please be careful. I love you.

NEW RESOURCES – EDUCATION/ENTERTAINMENT

The News-Gazette: Richard J. Leskosky | Virtual Insect Fear Film Festival to feature a bit of new, old. “Are all computer bugs bad? This year’s Insect Fear Film Festival proves that’s not the case when it goes online, like so many other film festivals, in response to safety concerns for viewers in this continuing COVID-19 virus pandemic.”

NEW RESOURCES – STATE-SPECIFIC

Florida International University: New tool tracks COVID economic recovery in South Florida. “The monthly COVID Economic Recovery Index, developed by researchers at the FIU Jorge M. Pérez Metropolitan Center, is aimed at assisting local policymakers and economic and community development officials in strategy and program development.”

UPDATES

NBC News: U.S. reaches 500,000 deaths from the coronavirus. “The coronavirus has killed more than 2,462,000 people worldwide, according to data compiled by Johns Hopkins University. More than a fifth of all deaths worldwide have occurred in the the U.S., which has less than 5 percent of the global population.”

MISINFORMATION / FACT-CHECKING

Poynter: No, Bill Gates is not calling for ‘mandatory’ vaccinations. “A YouTube video from Rebel News claims that Bill Gates is calling for the mandatory vaccination of all people, and states that the billionaire Microsoft co-founder wants pregnant people and children to be forced to take it. The video also claims that those who receive the vaccine will face a 1-in-10,000 chance of death. Both of these claims are Not Legit. Here’s how we fact-checked it.”

Jerusalem Post: Iran cleric: People who are vaccinated for COVID have ‘become homosexuals’
. “Ayatollah Abbas Tabrizian wrote on his Telegram social-media platform: ‘Don’t go near those who have had the COVID vaccine. They have become homosexuals.’”

Vanity Fair: COVID Anti-Vaxxers Are Taking Their Wild Conspiracies Into the Real World. “With COVID-19 vaccines finally being administered to the general public, the end of America’s hellish pandemic year is finally in sight. But the country’s anti-vaccine hordes are saying not so fast, claiming that the lifesaving injections are actually part of a scheme hatched by Bill Gates and Satan himself.”

The Journal (Ireland): Misleading videos of ’empty’ hospitals being shared on social media are putting extra strain on health service, say hospitals. “STAFF AT A number of hospitals around the country have criticised videos on anti-Covid 19 social media pages which suggest that hospitals are secretly ‘empty’, describing them as wrong and misleading.”

SOCIETAL IMPACT

New York Times: Is This the End of Tipping?. “During two enormous crises — a public health emergency and an economic crash — restaurant service workers have found themselves double-exposed. Those who have been able to keep their jobs have felt compelled to keep working, though they know the risks of long hours surrounded by maskless customers. Many say their average tips have declined, while they’ve been saddled with the added work of policing patrons who aren’t social distancing, or as one service worker put it, ‘babysitting for the greater good.’”

Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University: Interactive Tool Illustrates The Disparate Economic Impacts Of The Pandemic. “It’s been well-documented that households of color, especially those who rent or have lower incomes, have been particularly hard-hit, economically, by the pandemic. Last November, in conjunction with our State of the Nation’s Housing report, we released an interactive tool which included data from the Census Bureau’s Household Pulse Survey through late September. Updating the tool to include the subsequent six waves of data from the survey, we see that those trends continued through the end of the year, and conditions overall worsened for both renters and homeowners.”

Wired: The Digital Divide Is Giving American Churches Hell. “For places of worship, Covid-19 has upended traditions and emptied sacred spaces. About 45 percent of Americans attend religious services regularly, most of them in Christian churches, like Buckhead Church. Or they did, until last spring. Then shutdowns and stay-at-home orders sent congregations scrambling to move their services online, similar to schools and workplaces.”

Washington Post: The youngest victims of a national calamity, and the people they left behind. “In this new national graveyard of virus victims, the section set aside for the young held 271 children as of early February, according to data from the American Academy of Pediatrics and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Each death represents a shattered family and a trauma deepened, parents say, by the rampant belief that kids can’t get covid, or that it doesn’t much harm them when they do.” This article is a lot. If you want to skip it because you’re afraid you’ll cry yourself into a raisin, I don’t blame you. I have cried myself into a raisin.

HEALTH CARE / HEALTH CARE PROVIDERS

NBC News: Organ transplant patient dies after receiving Covid-infected lungs. “Doctors say a woman in Michigan contracted Covid-19 and died last fall two months after receiving a tainted double-lung transplant from a donor who turned out to harbor the virus that causes the disease — despite showing no signs of illness and initially testing negative.”

WORLD / FEDERAL GOVERNMENT

BBC: Covid vaccine: All UK adults to be offered jab by 31 July – PM. “All adults in the UK will be offered their first dose of a coronavirus vaccine by the end of July, the prime minister has pledged. More than 17 million people have been given a jab since the UK’s Covid vaccine rollout began in December 2020.”

STATE / LOCAL GOVERNMENT

New Yorker: The Rural Alaskan Towns Leading the Country in Vaccine Distribution. “In Sitka, the small Alaskan town where I live, fifteen hundred people—out of a total population of eight thousand—have already received second doses. We’re on track to complete vaccinations this spring. In many rural towns throughout the state, it is the tribal health organizations, not the state government, that are in charge of vaccine distribution.”

Iowa Public Radio: Iowa Governor Did Not Consult Public Health Department Before Removing Mask Mandate, Democrats Say. “Multiple Democratic lawmakers said the director of the Iowa Department of Public Health told them… that Gov. Kim Reynolds did not ask for the department’s input before removing the state’s limited mask mandate. The department and the governor’s office did not deny these reports.”

INDIVIDUALS / BANDS / GROUPS

Washington Post: On social media, vaccine misinformation mixes with extreme faith. “In an insular world on the social media app TikTok, young Christians act out biblically inspired scenes in which they are forced to take a vaccine for the coronavirus, only to end up splattered in fake blood and on the brink of death. The melodramatic videos are an attempt to represent how the introduction of coronavirus vaccines could herald the biblical End Time. Along with hundreds of thousands of other vaccine-questioning posts by social media users all over the world, they’re demonstrating the ways in which health misinformation is targeting Christians, some reaching sizable audiences.”

Mother Jones: COVID-19 Has Killed 1 in 475 Native Americans. “Nationwide one in every 475 Native Americans has died from Covid since the start of the pandemic, compared with one in every 825 white Americans and one in every 645 Black Americans. Native Americans have suffered 211 deaths per 100,000 people, compared with 121 white Americans per 100,000.”

BBC: Europe’s oldest person survives Covid just before 117th birthday. “A French nun who is Europe’s oldest person has survived Covid-19, just days before her 117th birthday. Lucile Randon, who took the name of Sister Andre in 1944, tested positive for coronavirus on 16 January but didn’t develop any symptoms.”

K-12 EDUCATION

BBC: Entire school board resigns after accidental public livestream. “An entire California school board has resigned after making disparaging remarks about families in an online meeting which they did not realise was being publicly live-streamed.” If you have this much contempt for your constituents, why are you an elected official? Go pound sand.

HEALTH

CNBC: Long-haul symptoms should be a ‘wake-up call’ for young people when it comes to avoiding Covid, Texas Children’s doctor says. “About 10 to 30% of all Covid patients will suffer from long-haul symptoms, according to the latest research from Mt. Sinai’s Center for Post-Covid Care. Those numbers should be a “wake-up call” for young people and motivate them to avoid infection, Dr. Peter Hotez of Texas Children’s Hospital said on CNBC’s ‘The News with Shepard Smith.’”

TECHNOLOGY

New York Times: N.Y.’s Vaccine Websites Weren’t Working. He Built a New One for $50.. “Huge Ma, a 31-year-old software engineer for Airbnb, was stunned when he tried to make a coronavirus vaccine appointment for his mother in early January and saw that there were dozens of websites to check, each with its own sign-up protocol. The city and state appointment systems were completely distinct. ‘There has to be a better way,’ he said he remembered thinking. So, he developed one.”

BBC: The video call apps linking home workers with strangers. “When Subrato Sarker had to start working from home due to the pandemic, he found himself struggling to stay productive while being on his own. Help has come from a host of strangers across the world who – at the other end of a one-on-one video call – sit and silently do their work while Mr Sarker does his.”

RESEARCH

EurekAlert: Public attitudes about COVID-19 in response to President Trump’s social media posts. “Researchers used near real-time social media data to capture the public’s changing COVID-19-related attitudes when former President Trump was infected.”

CRIME / SECURITY / LEGAL

Ubergizmo: Instagram Scams Have Risen More Than 50% Since The Pandemic. “This is according to figures from Action Fraud, the UK police national reporting center for fraud and cyber crime. A report from the BBC details a story of how a man lost £17,000 after falling for what seemed like an investment scam based on someone he was following on Instagram.”

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