How the Internet is honouring the late Kobe Bryant, Facebook’s redesign and “clear history” button, coronavirus and the spread of misinformation, Bell Let’s Talk, the best Superbowl ads this year (so far), more new emojis, and some much-needed Friday Fun.
Remembering Kobe and Gianna Bryant
Hearts around the world were shattered last weekend after the news about Kobe Bryant’s tragic passing broke. The retired five-time NBA champion was travelling with his 13-year-old daughter, Gianna, and seven others when their helicopter crashed, killing all nine people on board.
People everywhere have taken to social media to honour the Black Mamba, and if a 16-year-old from Vancouver gets his way, Kobe could be the inspiration behind the NBA’s next logo.
Nikyar Moghtader started an online petition to change the NBA’s logo to incorporate Kobe, and it’s gone viral with close to 3-million signatures. According to the Huffington Post, petition website Change.org revealed celebrities such as Snoop Dogg, T.I., Justin Bieber, Usher, Vanessa Hudgens, Adam Levine, Meek Mill and Naomi Campbell have all signed on and shared the request.
The logo currently features the silhouette of another basketball legend, Jerry West, who was also devastated by the news of Kobe’s passing.
How do you think the NBA should honour Kobe’s legacy? Our hearts go out to the families and friends of those lost in the tragic accident.
Bell Let’s Talk Day Sets a New Record in Support of Canadian Mental Health
This past Wednesday marked the 10th anniversary of Bell Let’s Talk Day.
Your actions counted! Bell Let’s Talk Day sets a new record with 154,387,425 messages of support for mental health, and $7,719,371.25 more Bell funding for Canadian mental health. #BellLetsTalk Learn more: https://t.co/jPfR5xMb8Y
— Bell Let's Talk (@Bell_LetsTalk) January 30, 2020
This year’s theme, Mental Health: Every Action Counts, set a new record with 154,387,425 messages of support for mental health, and $7,719,371.25 more Bell funding for Canadian mental health. #BellLetsTalk was once again the top Twitter trend, both in Canada and worldwide.
Let’s take a look at some of the celebs and other notable figures who joined in on the conversation:
It’s the 10th year of #BellLetsTalk and, while we’ve come a long way from where the conversation on mental health started, there’s still more work to do to end stigma & make sure Canadians can get the support they need. So let’s keep talking, Canada!
— Justin Trudeau (@JustinTrudeau) January 29, 2020
Join the important conversation on mental health and remember there are many ways to get help // Joignez vous à l’importante conversation sur la santé mentale et sachez qu’il existe plusieurs façons d’aller chercher de l’aide. – Céline xx… #BellCause #BellLetsTalk
— Celine Dion (@celinedion) January 29, 2020
Today is #BellLetsTalk Day! Every year, Bell donates 5¢ to Canadian mental health initiatives for every retweet. Last year, we had 25K retweets. Let’s beat that!
— Ellen DeGeneres (@TheEllenShow) January 29, 2020
— Toronto Raptors (@Raptors) January 29, 2020
Twitter to Tweak Search Results to Fight Coronavirus Misinformation
With the spread of coronavirus comes the spread of misinformation. As conspiracy theories about the virus spread on social media, Twitter is taking new steps to limit the spread of false facts.
The company announced it will prevent automated search results likely to “direct individuals to non-credible content” and instead point users to authoritative information from organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
We want to help you access credible information, especially when it comes to public health.
— Twitter Public Policy (@Policy) January 29, 2020
When users search for information about the #coronavirus, they’ll be met with credible information first. Twitter has formed partnerships with organizations in 14 countries including the U.S., Australia and Japan, and says it will expand to more locations as necessary.
Facebook Launches “Clear History” Feature and Shares Upcoming Redesign
After almost two years of waiting, Facebook is finally giving users the ability to delete the browsing history it uses to serve personalized ads.
The “Off-Facebook Activity” menu was made available to all users as of this past Tuesday. The menu allows users to manage their off-Facebook activity and provides a list of every website and app that Facebook tracks when you’re not actually using Facebook.
If you want to get rid of that data, simply click the “Clear History” button and voila! You can also choose to “Manage Future Activity” to opt out of data harvesting going forward.
Also new from Facebook this week: the app’s upcoming desktop redesign.
The new layout is less cluttered, features brighter icons, and will be dropping to users around the world sometime before this spring. A small percentage of people will be invited to try “The New Facebook” before it launches.
Ring Smart Doorbell Caught Sharing User Data
According to an investigation by the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Amazon’s Ring smart doorbell surveillance product is under fire for misuse of customer information.
The EFF says Ring users weren’t aware their data was being shared, and even more alarming, their data was shared with Facebook regardless of whether they had a Facebook account or not.
Shared information includes names, private IP addresses, mobile network carriers, persistent identifiers and sensor data on the devices of paying customers.
Super Bowl 54’s Best Ads (So Far)
This weekend marks Super Bowl 54, and if you’re not into football, at least there’s always the ads and epic halftime show.
Here are some of our favourite Super Bowl commercials from 2020 so far:
More Inclusive Emoji Are on Their Way
On Thursday, the Unicode Consortium announced the addition of 117 new emoji for 2020, dropping later this year as part of Emoji 13.0.
The update will include 62 brand-new emoji as well as 55 new gender and skin-tone variants, including gender-inclusive emoji.
Other notable additions to the mix: the transgender flag – from a proposal co-sponsored by Google and Microsoft, person feeding a baby a bottle, two people hugging, and many more animals, food items, and other objects.
Get your first look at all the new designs here:
This Cutie Calls Himself the ‘Shirley Temple King’ and We’re Here For It
He regularly travels around his hometown of Fairfield County, Connecticut to give his brutally honest reviews on local restaurants’ take on the non-alcoholic drink. Leo rates his findings with cherry emojis (so cute!) and isn’t afraid to give a little constructive criticism when necessary.
Our hearts can’t take it!