Misinformation, Internet Bandwidth & Hacking in the World of Coronavirus

Nicholas Thompson, Editor-in-chief of WIRED reflects on the state of technology in the world of COVID-19: Question one: In this new world of coronavirus, how vulnerable are we to the spread of misinformation and how do we combat it?

We are extremely vulnerable because we're hyperemotional. We're desperate for a cure. We're looking for any thread of optimism we can find, and so people are able to exploit that. What can we do about it? Well, the platforms have to take responsibility like they've never before. Journalists have to take responsibility. And the good news, platforms are taking strong actions, stronger than in the past.


With many people working from home, will there be an Internet bandwidth issue?

There already is in Europe. Netflix had to move from high definition streaming to standard definition streaming. Hasn't come to United States yet, and I think we'll be OK. One interesting side note, mobile bandwidth will be fine because everybody is at home using Wi-Fi, not their mobile phones.

Why does coronavirus set the stage for hacking?

Well, sort of for the same reasons it sets the stage for misinformation. We're desperate to find any bit of goodness out there, and it makes us susceptible. When your emotions are at a very high level, that's where hackers can take advantage of you.


How will our cities and lives change in the future? What about a structure with a roller skating rink above a swimming pool, made out of transparent solar panels that power the entire park? This was the innovation invented by Eni's young researchers based on Luminescent Solar Concentrators, developed through Eni's research.

Watch the latest episode of Funny Applications, Eni's video series that imagines new uses for technology.

For 30 years, citizens of Hong Kong have gathered in Victoria Park on the evening of June 4 to honor the peaceful protesters massacred in Beijing's Tiananmen Square on that date in 1989. It has been the only public Tiananmen commemoration permitted on Chinese soil.

This year, the park was surrounded by barricades to keep people out. The officially stated reason for the shut-down? Crowds spread coronavirus. (In this city of more than 7 million, COVID has so far killed four people.)

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In an interview with GZERO World host Ian Bremmer, Hong Kong lawmaker Dennis Kwok, an outspoken pro-democracy advocate, expresses his concerns that the current "draconian" laws China's leadership is forcing upon his city has expedited the end of the "one country, two systems" policy established in 1997.

Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

Big news, of course, that former Secretary of Defense Mattis comes out with a public statement basically calling Trump's rule, his actions, unconstitutional and unfit for office, more divisive than any president he's ever seen.

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French protests over racial injustice: The George Floyd protests in the United States have sparked solidarity demonstrations around the world, with people flocking to US embassies in Berlin, London and elsewhere to express their outrage. But they have also inspired other countries to reexamine racial justice within their own societies. In France, where street demonstrations are practically a national pastime, thousands of people have gathered in support of the family of Adama Traoré, a 24-year old black man who died in police custody back in 2016. At least 20,000 Parisians demonstrated Wednesday, despite coronavirus bans on public gatherings. Protesters adopted similar language to the Floyd protests, demanding accountability for the officers who violently pinned down Traoré during a dispute over an identity check, leading to his death. Renewed focus on this case, which has become a potent symbol of police brutality in France, comes as coronavirus lockdowns have recently stoked tensions between the police and the mostly-minority residents of Paris' banlieues (low-income suburbs).

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