Tag Archives: Career

News You Can Use: 1/10/2018

  • The Worst Job in Technology: Staring at Human Depravity to Keep It Off Facebook

    The well-being of content moderators “is something we talk about with our team members and with our outsourcing vendors to make clear it’s not just contractual. It’s really important to us,” says Mark Handel, a user research manager at Facebook who helps oversee content moderation. “Is it enough? I don’t know. But it’s only getting more important and more critical.”

    Former content moderators recall having to view images of war victims who had been gutted or drowned and child soldiers engaged in killings. One former Facebook moderator reviewed a video of a cat being thrown into a microwave.

    Workers sometimes quit on their first or second day. Some leave for lunch and never come back. Others remain unsettled by the work—and what they saw as a lack of emotional support or appreciation—long after they quit.

    Shaka Tafari worked as a contractor at messaging app Whisper in 2016 soon after it began testing a messaging feature designed for high-school students. Mr. Tafari, 30, was alarmed by the number of rape references in text messages he reviewed, he says, and sometimes saw graphic photos of bestiality or people killing dogs.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-worst-job-in-technology-staring-at-human-depravity-to-keep-it-off-facebook-1514398398

  • How To Deliver Your Presentation In Half The Time You’d Allotted

    Layering. This approach simply means designing your presentation from the inside out. The inner “layer” is your key message–the most important takeaway you want your audience to leave with. The next layer consists of your other major points that directly support that key message. Then you have the details that support those key points–which together make up a third layer. Think of it kind of like dressing for cold weather: If you get too warm, you can always take off a layer. Similarly, if you get short on time, you can take off one of the outer layers. What’s really important is that you communicate your inner layers effectively.

    https://www.fastcompany.com/40513468/how-to-deliver-your-presentation-in-half-the-time-youd-allotted

  • Oneplus and Tencent: Exploring China’s technological revolution

    This is a nice follow up to SourceCast Episode 101
  • Four Reasons Resumes No Longer Work

    Technology has changed the marketplace, and HR is the only vertical that hasn’t seen a rapid transition, says Carisa Miklusak, CEO of the algorithmic hiring platform tilr. “Right now tech isn’t giving people a fair opportunity to compete,” she says. “Before you blame the resume, you need to understand that they’re a byproduct of old employer values. Titles and years of experience are no longer a person’s number-one currency.”

    https://www.fastcompany.com/40512551/4-reasons-why-resumes-no-longer-work

  • Mark Zuckerberg Resolves to ‘Fix’ Facebook in 2018

    Last fall, Facebook lurched into crisis mode after disclosing that Russia-backed entities used its platform and advertising tools to spread divisive messages to disrupt the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign. The admission sparked a rare set of congressional hearings where lawmakers grilled officials from Facebook, Twitter Inc. and Alphabet Inc.’s Google.

    More recently, several former Facebook executives and employees have expressed remorse for helping build a platform that they said was designed to foster dependence on Facebook. Those comments eventually prompted Facebook to acknowledge that certain types of social-media use could be harmful to users’ mental health.

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/mark-zuckerberg-resolves-to-fix-facebook-in-2018-1515104645
    This is a nice sentiment, but how? Details would be nice. Zuck should have a plan before he made a comment about it.

Photo: Jeremy Bishop

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News You Can Use: 11/22/2017

  • For Tech’s Deepest Problems, Women Are The Canary In The Data Mine

    The book proposes this simple but radical solution: Women should not try to adapt to the male-centric corporate world, instead women should “lean out” and create their own companies. “I’ve figured out a way to create safe space for myself in tech,” wrote Shevinsky.

    In a recent conversation, we discussed how the culture of overwork contributes to the problem of misogyny in many companies, and about how the singular focus on growth and profit drowns out ethical concerns that in the long run ultimately ruins companies. We also spoke about how feminism has said all it can, and yet things don’t seem to be getting better. And we discussed how a hostile workplace for women often indicates that a company has other ethical issues as well.

    https://www.fastcompany.com/40494460/for-techs-biggest-problems-women-are-the-canary-in-the-data-mine

  • The Surprising Thing I Gained When I Switched to a Remote Workforce

    One way that businesses are trying to stem employee turnover and are working to improve employee well-being is embracing the paradigm shift to a telecommuting workforce, aka “working from home.” A 2014 PGi survey of 1,000 workers found that 80 percent of their employers offered a telecommuting option, and about half of these employees exercised this option at least once a week. The millennial generation is all about this lifestyle, where 68 percent of millennials are more interested in a position that involves working from home and 64 percent would like the opportunity to work remotely.

    Also:

    One of the aspects of telecommuting that I didn’t think of when we first started was the increase in quality hires I was able to make. Before the switch, we were pigeonholed into hiring from the localities surrounding our business, or hiring someone who was willing to make the long commute every day — something that weighs heavily on even the best of employees.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/304422

  • A pro wrestler’s guide to confidence
  • It’s Time to Tax Companies for Using Our Personal Data

    The data tax could be a minor cost, less than 1 percent of the revenue companies earn from selling our personal data, spread out over an entire industry. Individually, no company’s bottom line would substantially suffer; collectively, the tax would pull money back to the public, from an industry profiting from material and labor that is, at its very core, our own.

    This idea is not new. It is, essentially, a sales tax, among the oldest taxes that exist, but it hasn’t been done because assigning a fixed monetary value to our data can be very difficult. For a lot of internet businesses, our personal data either primarily flows through the business or remains locked within.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/14/business/dealbook/taxing-companies-for-using-our-personal-data.html

  • The Washington Post Is A Software Company Now

    Since 2014, a new Post operation now called Arc Publishing has offered the publishing system the company originally used for WashingtonPost.com as a service. That allows other news organizations to use the Post’s tools for writers and editors. Arc also shoulders the responsibility of ensuring that readers get a snappy, reliable experience when they visit a site on a PC or mobile device. It’s like a high-end version of Squarespace or WordPress.com, tailored to solve the content problems of a particular industry.

    By offloading the creation of publishing tools and the hosting of sites, media companies can concentrate on the journalism itself rather than the technical requirements of getting it in front of readers. Scot Gillespie, the Washington Post’s chief technology officer, says that Arc’s value proposition is “let us run the CMS [content management system] for you, the creation of circulation. You focus on differentiation.”

    https://www.fastcompany.com/40495770/the-washington-post-is-a-software-company-now

Photo: Felix Russell-Saw

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News You Can Use: 11/15/2017

  • I Learned a Lot About Strong Company Culture From Jeff Bezos — But There’s 1 Strategy I Won’t Copy

    Amazon’s culture is fairly cutthroat and trust does not run high. Every year employees are stack ranked and those at the bottom of the list are cut. In theory, it’s important to keep the bar for performance high and this is one of the ways Amazon does that. But, this practice pits employees against each other. Instead of working as teammates they compete as rivals. Trust is essential in building a healthy company. You need every person on the team to be willing to shift priorities and pitch in on initiatives that fall well outside their defined job role in order to make the company successful. You need a culture where people have each other’s backs. If you get the right people on board and align them all around a single vision, this will happen naturally.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/304037

  • Don’t Struggle Always to Be the ‘Smartest Person in the Room.’ Instead, Rely on a Mentor.

    Find several mentors who share your passions. When you reach out to mentors — and aim to have more than one — look for common ground according to your passion for similar challenges and objectives. Then, when you approach these individuals, emphasize these shared passions in a letter or speech to demonstrate the potential of a collaboration.

    Don’t just ask someone generically and blandly to be your mentor; you’ll risk coming across as a “social climber.” Mentors want to be aligned with those who share similar values and goals.

    https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/304265

  • John Oliver: Economic Development (NSFW)

    Once again, I beat Mr. Oliver to the punch (Obviously I love Last Week Tonight, and just feel vindicated that we cover the same topics (and that I am a little ahead of the trend every once and a while).
  • Facebook, WeWork and others use this startup to make swag

    “People think of swag as junk but it shouldn’t be,” Swag co-founder Jeremy Parker told TechCrunch. “It could be an amazing marketing tool if it’s built right.”

    Swag.com offers products like water bottles, umbrellas, shirts, jackets, USB drives, bags and other items from brands like Patagonia, Case Logic. Once you pick the product, you upload your designs, specify how many you want printed and then wait for Swag to send you the production mockup for approval.

    Standard production time takes about 15 days while priority production takes 10 days and costs a bit more. Production doesn’t start until the customer has approved the mockup. Since Swag works directly with the manufacturer and vendor, it doesn’t have to hold any inventory.

    https://techcrunch.com/2017/11/06/facebook-wework-and-others-use-this-startup-to-make-swag/?ncid=rss
    I really do enjoy good company swag and there is so much bad swag that I end up tossing.

  • How Facebook Figures Out Everyone You’ve Ever Met

    Behind the Facebook profile you’ve built for yourself is another one, a shadow profile, built from the inboxes and smartphones of other Facebook users. Contact information you’ve never given the network gets associated with your account, making it easier for Facebook to more completely map your social connections.

    Facebook isn’t scanning the work email of the attorney above. But it likely has her work email address on file, even if she never gave it to Facebook herself. If anyone who has the lawyer’s address in their contacts has chosen to share it with Facebook, the company can link her to anyone else who has it, such as the defense counsel in one of her cases.

    https://gizmodo.com/how-facebook-figures-out-everyone-youve-ever-met-1819822691

Photo: Jase Ess

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SourceCast: Episode 94: Youtube Edition

It was a slow technology news week, so I went back to through the last 6 weeks of “News That You Can Use” to provide career advice and a few personal examples of that advice in use.

Photo: Clem Onojeghuo

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SourceCast: Episode 94: Career Advice

This week I follow the threads of months of “News That You Can Use” posts to weave together career advice for taking interviews, dealing with unusual interview questions and situations, and how to handle not getting the job.

Photo: ORNELLA BINNI

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