Gwengoat/iStockBy Will Steakin and Josh Margolin, ABC News(WASHINGTON) — Violent anti-government extremists are developing communication strategies to circumvent recent clampdowns by the government and the tech industry in order to continue recruiting new members and promote their views online, according to a new confidential memo by the Department of Homeland Security.The report, issued on Monday by the department’s Office of Intelligence and Analysis and obtained by ABC News, warns that “some militia violent extremists (MVEs) are actively disguising their online social media outreach to promote violent anti-government narratives, connect with others espousing violent extremist views, and share tactical information by using layered communications,” even as social media platforms like Facebook have taken action to mitigate those efforts.Faced with tighter restrictions online, especially in the wake of the Jan. 6 Capitol insurrection, militia groups have shifted to a “layered strategy” to recruit new members by starting conversations on popular, easy-to-access platforms and gradually shifting the discussions to more secure communication services, “such as private social media groups and encrypted applications,” according to the DHS memo.“Movement to these more secure channels helps MVEs filter or disguise online communications to protect operational security, avoid violating social media platforms’ terms of service, and reserve detailed operational discussions for more secure platforms,” the memo says.The report goes on to warn that these groups’ efforts to “obfuscate their recruitment of others into these tighter-knit online communities using innocuous postings in public groups” would likely hinder social media companies’ efforts to crack down on violent militia groups on their platforms.The memo lays out three stages of communications that these groups, which include the Boogaloo movement and the Three Percenters, have allegedly resorted to amid the crackdown. It starts with recruiting via popular public apps like Facebook or Twitter, then moving to emerging networks like Parler or MeWe, then finally transitioning to “official private membership group(s)” on secure encrypted messaging applications like Telegram and Signal, which have grown even more popular among extremists following the Capitol riot.Once recruits are on the more secure platforms, says the memo, there is “frequent communication of violent extremist messaging, sharing of weapons and tactical guides, and other tactics, techniques, and procedures.”Dr. Megan Squire, a computer science professor at Elon University who tracks online extremism for the Southern Poverty Law Center, told ABC News that while the idea that extremists are using social media in “layers” is not new, it shows why applications like Telegram are “so appealing to these groups.”“This two-pronged approach provided by Telegram is a key technical asset for hate and terror groups,” Squire wrote in a 2020 report for the Centre for Analysis of the Radical Right (CARR). “Why? Because the platform offers both public channels that can be used for recruitment and propaganda, and the encrypted messaging needed for planning clandestine activity.”“Couple this with lax enforcement of its own policies about prohibited speech, and Telegram becomes a very effective tool for hate,” she wrote.Telegram did not respond to a request by ABC News for comment.On the other hand, Squire told ABC News, it appears that the bolstered restrictions put in place by some social media platforms are affecting militia groups’ recruiting ability by forcing them to be spread out further across the internet.“I have found that when groups move from one platform to two or three, it does put a few slight speed bumps in the road,” Squire said. “It is much harder to onboard someone when you’re asking them to learn two or three separate platforms, and each new technology represents an opportunity for the group to make mistakes.”Over the past year, Facebook has worked to tighten its rules against the spread of violence, hate and misinformation on its platform, including banning groups tied to QAnon and militia movements like Boogaloo. But a new report from Avaaz, a nonprofit civic advocacy group, found that extremist groups continue to thrive on Facebook despite the bans, as evidenced by over 260 Facebook pages from groups that Avaaz said “spread violence-glorifying material in the heat of the 2020 election.”And since the Capitol riot, major platforms like Facebook and Twitter have faced growing scrutiny over their role in allowing the spread of online extremism and misinformation. During a Congressional hearing last week, the three major tech leaders from Google, Facebook, and Twitter were asked to answer “yes” or “no” as to whether their platforms played a role in the lead-up to the storming of the Capitol.Only Twitter’s Jack Dorsey gave a direct answer, saying “Yes” — but adding, “You also have to take into consideration the broader ecosystem. It’s not just about the technological systems that we use.”Copyright © 2021, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.
Previous Article Next Article HR HartleyOn 17 Feb 2004 in Personnel Today Related posts:No related photos. Comments are closed. Hiding away from IT contract recruitersI appear to have upset a few recruitment consultants when I alluded toharassment a few columns ago. Good! At least we’re starting a debate here, about how to move relationshipsforward so that we recruiters and consultants can reach a better state ofpractice. So, here’s some more fuel to add to the fire… Recently, I asked my friends about the worst things that happen to them inthe course of their daily working lives. Some said firing staff, others saidthey hated telling people they hadn’t got salary increases or bonuses. Another dreaded presenting to the board, and yet another (I have lots offriends) loathed facing the press (she reckons journalists are mean; I thinkthey’re lovely. Honest). I went on to relate the horror that can beset my day when the worst thingimaginable happens – an IT contract recruiter gets hold of my direct dialnumber… As a breed, man oh man – this bunch make double-glazing salespeople seemshy, and the big bloke whose pint I spilt the other night, submissive. What IT contract recruiters don’t seem to understand is that like a goodgirl on prom night, when I say no, I mean no. And any attempts at assertion,boxing in or straightforward ego-challenging are simply not going to get thempast the front door. My favourite attempt was: “Maybe I need to speak to the person whomakes the decisions.” That’s me, dummy! Anybody who receives similar onslaughts on a regular basis is more thanwelcome to come to the inaugural ‘I Got Hounded by IT Contract Recruiters UntilI was Too Afraid to Answer the Phone’ meeting. I am busy organising it rightnow The plan is to all hide and quiver behind our voicemails together. Meanwhile, you IT recruitment lot, just try backing off a little…… Hartley, our new weekly columnist with strong opinion, is an HR directorat large
The Ocean City Community Center Association unveiled a donor wall on Friday, recognizing the people who made contributions to a facility that over 35 years has become a model community hub.Former U.S. Rep. William J. Hughes Sr. speaks of the founding of the Ocean City Community Center and of the community spirit that built it.The “Afternoon of Appreciation” featured former U.S. Rep. William J. Hughes Sr., an Ocean City resident who was instrumental in the creation of the Ocean City Community Center in 1979.Hughes said his success in securing $1 million in federal economic development money for the project served as a catalyst for a community effort to raise the rest of the funding. He said the group always envisioned a community meeting place.“But I don’t think they dreamed that it would be what it is today,” he said.The facility now includes the Aquatics and Fitness Center, Free Public Library, Arts Center, Historical Museum and Senior Center — serving residents and visitors of all ages, all days of the week.“We’re blessed because we have people who love Ocean City and who are committed to Ocean City,” Hughes said.The donor wall dedication preceded a gathering in the Senior Center, where Ocean City restaurants donated an array of food and refreshments, entertainment was provided, and where Mr. and Mrs. Claus paid a visit. The event was an informal (voluntary donations) fundraiser for the OCCCA.OCCCA Chairman Ken Cooper spoke at the donor wall ceremony, thanking all the people who donated time and money to the facility and honoring the founding committee members from the 1970s:Robert AdamsGordon BerkstresserFenton CareyCarol HadtkeDan HughesDick KabatDon PileggiRon TahtJohn WalkerElaine Wimberg“This really is a community center in the truest sense of the word,” Cooper said. The Ocean City Community Center Association on Friday (Dec. 12) unveiled a new donor wall recognizing the people who have made contributions to the facility.
Bakery multinational Aryzta plans to target UK supermarkets with its full range of speciality breads and pastries by building on the links of its newly acquired Honeytop business with the big retailers.In its most recent annual report, the company, which was formed in 2008 through the merger of IAWS and Hiestand, revealed that it had acquired flatbreads producer Honeytop Speciality Foods. It now plans to use the Dunstable-based firm’s relationships with the supermarkets to develop retail sales for its other bakery brands, which include Delice de France, Cuisine de France and La Brea.”Aryzta’s main customers in the UK are limited-ser-vice restaurants, independents, convenience stores and the foodservice markets. Retail is an area in which we are not well-established,” said Aryzta’s communications manager Paul Meade. “We plan to leverage Honeytop’s access to, and relationships with, the super- markets for our full range of products. It gives us the chance to go into ISBs with our artisan bakery products.”He added that there were also opportunities to export Honey-top’s products across Europe, while the manufacturing technology at the company’s factory could be replicated in other Aryzta sites around the world.Honeytop has been investing heavily in technology, injecting £9m last year to double capacity at its plant, which included an extra 140,000sq ft of production space and high-speed tortilla lines.
We’re beyond excited to see Gregg Allman return to the stage this weekend, as the legendary Allman Brothers founder will make his first on-stage appearance at Red Rocks Amphitheatre after being forced to postpone a series of tour dates. With just a few days to go until Allman’s performance on September 25th, he sat down with Westword to talk about what had happened.In the interview, Allman reveals that a serious bout of pneumonia was what sidelined him on tour. “Right in the middle of the thing I got pneumonia,” says Allman. “Yeah, that was a drag. I was almost to the end of a tour. I had to two more to go, and damn, it just set in. I had to postpone two of the gigs, but we’ll go back and make them up, for sure.”With a fresh, clean bill of health, Allman will be headlining his own Laid Back Festival this Sunday the 25th. The festival will also feature sets from ZZ Top, Jaimoe’s Jasssz Band, Richie Furay Band, Lucie Silvas, Levon, and People’s Blues of Richmond. Laid Back features up and coming artists, because, as Allman says, “On the way up, somebody gave me a shot at it, and so I’m trying to return the favor.”We’re glad that Gregg Allman is feeling better and we can’t wait for him to return to the stage!
On Thursday, The String Cheese Incident officially released their latest single, “I Want You”, from their SCI Sound Lab. The track was initially premiered via Rolling Stone.“I Want You” marks The String Cheese Incident’s second standalone single release of the year, on the heels of February’s “Bhangra Saanj”, featuring experimental electronic fusion group Beats Antique. The band recruited The Infamous Stringdusters dobro master Andy Hall on the latest studio endeavor, written and and led by guitarist Bill Nershi.In the accompanying video for the new release, the track opens up with Nershi floating in a meditative state of mind before the camera pans to the band in the studio. Drummer Michael Travis sets the tempo with a snappy, uptempo beat, as Hall and keyboardist Kyle Hollingsworth add some smooth backing texture behind Nershi’s lead on vocals.The String Cheese Incident’s Bill Nershi shared his insights on the new track with Rolling Stone, explaining,This song was inspired by feelings for my wife. She’s been with me through thick and thin for 22 years and still brings out the best in me.Listen to The String Cheese Incident’s new song “I Want You” featuring Andy Hall below:The String Cheese Incident ft. Andy Hall – “I Want You”[Video: The String Cheese Incident]Next up for The String Cheese Incident is an intimate performance at Aspen, Colorado’s Belly Up on April 5th, followed by two headlining shows at Aspen’s inaugural The Après festival on April 6th and 7th. The String Cheese Incident’s 25th-anniversary schedule will continue with a two-night stand at The Fox Theatre in St. Louis, MO on April 19th and 20th. From there, the band will head down to the Big Easy during the second weekend of New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival for a trio of special performances including a show at The Orpheum on May 2nd and a pair of shows at Mardi Gras World with support from Pigeons Playing Ping Pong on May 3rd and 4th.The band will continue with a performance at Cumberland, MD’s DelFest on May 24th, followed by a three-night run at The Capitol Theatre in Port Chester, NY on May 25th, 26th, and 27th. SCI will also make summer festival appearances at Electric Forest, The Peach Music Festival, and FloydFest, as well as a four-night Independence Day run, and their annual three-night homecoming run at Morrison, CO’s Red Rocks Amphitheatre on July 19th, 20th, and 21st.For ticketing information and a full list of The String Cheese Incident’s upcoming tour dates, head to the band’s website.
Related Smith Campus Center, re-envisioned Traditional building ceremony highlights midpoint of construction project During the past several years, planners have met with hundreds of people — including multiple groups of students, faculty, staff, and community members — to hear suggestions and develop guiding principles for the types of amenities that should be included in the project. An overwhelming consensus emerged: potential vendors must be simultaneously sustainable, local, healthy, and diverse, and have significant experience running successful food venues.The criteria gave the project’s planners a clarity of mission.“When we were developing the food program for the Smith Campus Center we sought to engage and work with food operators who were excited by the idea of partnering with Harvard in a way that was more than just signing a lease,” said Meredith Weenick, vice president for campus services. “The selected vendors are as committed as we are to the bigger picture, and their goals align with ours — goals of being sustainable, welcoming, and an integral part of the wider Harvard community.”The University required that the restaurants sign green-building leases, ensuring that their practices align with the standards outlined in Harvard’s Sustainability Plan.The focus groups also requested that the atmosphere of the new space be casual and comfortable. With hearty, “feel-good” fare throughout the day, and more than 800 indoor and outdoor seats, the new space will meet that criteria.“We’re excited to be part of the Harvard community and Harvard Square as a whole,” said Eric Papachristos, owner of Saloniki. “We feel the diversity of the neighborhood, young and old, residents and tourists, students and professors … it’s the perfect cross-section of what is going on in today’s world — and we are honored to be able to feed this community“We believe that our focus on culture, service, and integrity of our food will be a great addition to what is already happening in the Square,” he added.,The owners of Blackbird Doughnuts agreed.“As a home-grown, Boston-based artisanal doughnut shop, Blackbird’s focus has been in Boston proper. When presented with the opportunity to open in the Smith Campus Center and iconic Harvard Square, we jumped,” said owner Rebecca Roth Gullo. “The Smith Campus Center will be the crown jewel of Harvard Square and we are thrilled that Blackbird will be smack in the center of it. The area has so much going on — diversity, history, national exposure, and we are so excited to be part of the recent growth.”Bon Me has operated a food truck on Harvard’s campus since 2013 and co-owner Patrick Lynch is “thrilled” to be among the first-floor vendors. “This project is exactly the type of dynamic and vibrant space that we love to be a part of, and our healthy and unique Asian food should be a great addition to the campus and Harvard Square,” he said.Harvard has finalized lease negotiations with all of the food operators, and vendors have received the necessary zoning approvals.Denise Jillson, executive director of the Harvard Square Business Association, said the renovated center “will significantly add to the diverse and exciting character that exists throughout Harvard Square. We appreciate Harvard’s willingness to shape that project in a way that reflects the extensive dialogue and input from all community partners.” Designers hope to add common spaces, eating options, roof terrace A diverse array of food options will populate the first floor of the newly renovated Richard A. and Susan F. Smith Campus Center (SCC), which remains on track for its grand opening later this year.Pavement Coffeehouse, Swissbäkers, Bon Me, Whole Heart Provisions, Blackbird Doughnuts, Saloniki, and Oggi Gourmet will all open for business in the early fall.“Food and drink play a central role in bringing people together, and I am pleased that members of the Harvard — and Harvard Square — community will have so many options when the Smith Campus Center reopens,” said Harvard President Drew Faust. “It is exciting to imagine the kinds of conversations and collaborations that will be sparked in the new venues, and I am grateful to the many, many people who provided input and made this important project possible.” Plans for Smith Campus Center Public views first designs for creating central University gathering spaces Topping off Smith Campus Center
Here’s a quick roundup of stories you may have missed today. New Version of Idina & Kristin’s WickedWe imagine this release will be, well, popular! To celebrate the 13th Broadway anniversary of Stephen Schwartz’s Wicked’s on October 30, the Grammy-winning, multi-platinum original cast recording has received its first-ever wide release on vinyl as a double LP via Verve/UMe. Featuring the vocal talents of a certain Idina Menzel and Kristin Chenoweth, the record has been on Billboard’s Top Cast Albums Chart for 557 weeks, including 333 weeks at number one. The blockbuster continues to defy gravity eight shows a week at the Main Stem’s Gershwin Theatre and currently stars Jennifer DiNoia and Carrie St. Louis.LCT Eyes Colin Firth-Led My Fair Lady RevivalWouldn’t it be loverly if the My Fair Lady revival really is now closer to landing on Broadway? According to the New York Post, Lincoln Center Theater is now interested in staging the project, which as we previously reported currently has Colin Firth on board to star as Henry Higgins, with Bartlett Sher directing. Names in the mix to play Eliza Doolittle have so far included Oscar winner Anne Hathaway and Tony nominee Carey Mulligan. Kelli Barrett danced all night in Lerner and Loewe’s classic tuner at Sag Harbor’s Bay Street Theater over the summer. Julia Andrews, the first Broadway Eliza, has directed an incarnation of the tuner that is currently running in Sydney, Australia.Win Walk-On Dancing Role on Hairspray Live!Good morning, Baltimore! Want to be on NBC’s Hairspray Live! alongside Harvey Fierstein, Jennifer Hudson, Ariana Grande, Kristin Chenoweth, Derek Hough and so many more? A dance contest has been set for September 15 at the Hippodrome Theater in Baltimore and is open to residents of the WBAL-TV market. The winner will be flown to Los Angeles and be part of the Peacock Network’s live telecast on December 7. The project’s star, Maddie Baillio, who plays Tracy Turnblad, will join an array of producers and choreographers as judges. Contestants should watch the videos featuring Hough and be expected to perform as he explains the step-by-step dance moves. Click here for all the forms and details!Alex Brightman to Emcee Broadway SalutesSchool of Rock’s Alex Brightman will host the eighth annual Broadway Salutes event, which celebrates theater professionals who have worked 25, 35 and 50+ years on Broadway. Directed by Marc Bruni, special guest performers will include Leslie Kritzer and Rashidra Scott; the ceremony is scheduled for September 20 in Shubert Alley from 3:30 PM.P.S. Just because it’s Friday, check out the Broadway supernova and pocket diva’s rendition of “Popular” below. You’re welcome, have a thrillifying weekend! Star Files View Comments Idina Menzel & Kristin Chenoweth in ‘Wicked'(Photo: Joan Marcus) Kristin Chenoweth
Every year, Americans spend about $2 billion on fresh flowers for Mother’s Day. While fresh flowers are gorgeous, they have a short shelf life. This year, why not skip the bouquet and make Mom a living collection of flowers and plants that may last for years?Self-contained gardens filled with woody perennials like shrubs and accented with colorful vines and annuals can add color and texture to any corner of the home and can be maintained with little work.“The important thing to remember when creating a container garden is that you can show your personal creativity and showcase your mother’s favorite flowers, be it a small tree like a Japanese maple, a variety of edible plants she can use to cook for you or a particular color theme she loves, ” said Matt Chappell, associate professor of horticulture at the University of Georgia’s Department of Horticulture.When planning a container garden as a gift, it’s important not only to make your container garden aesthetically pleasing, but also to set the one receiving the gift up for success, Chappell said. Nobody wants a container garden that’s stressful to maintain or that they feel guilty about potentially killing.Here are a few tips for container garden composition and survival:Theme: There’s a tremendous diversity of plants out there. It can be easy to end up with a jumbled mess of a container garden if you don’t start out with a plan. Themes can be as loose as Southern forest staples with small conifers, hostas, small, woody ferns and flowering vines or as concrete as a pizza garden that features basil plants, tomatoes and small pepper plants.Variety: When you have your theme, think of plants of different heights, colors and textures that fit within your theme. Many successful container gardens start with a taller, woody perennial to give the container weight and height that’s surrounded by colorful annuals or perennials. Avoid putting too many plants with feathery or needle-like leaves together because this can lead to a fuzzy, messy-looking container.Compatibility: While variety in color and shape will help create an interesting container garden, plants need to have similar water and sunlight requirements if the garden as a whole is going to survive. Avoid mixing shade-loving plants with plants that need full sun, or mixing cacti with lush shade- and moisture-loving plants like hostas.Growth rates: Plants that are grown together in the same container also need to have similar growth habits. If you use one vigorously growing plant in the same pot as a slow-growing plant, the fast-growing plant may end up taking over and choking out its container mates.If a fast-growing variety is essential to your composition, plant it in its own plastic pot, and then plant that pot in the larger container. This will keep the roots from taking over the garden.Spacing: Whether they are slow growers or fast growers, you can expect your plants to continue to get taller and to spread out as time goes on. You don’t want the plants to become crowded. The best practice is to fill your container two-thirds of the way with plants to give all plants room to grow.Irrigation: The most important part of maintaining any container is keeping it properly watered. Newly planted containers need to be watered once every two to five days. Well-established containers that have grown for a few months will have to be watered daily during the spring and summer, and about once a week during the late fall and winter.Water the container until water starts to drain from the bottom of the pot. Any additional water is a waste.Fertilization: The best way to fertilize container gardens is to use slow-release fertilizers and to apply them once or twice a year, depending on the instructions. Planters should avoid fertilizing their container gardens after August because fertilization can spur new growth and that growth could be damaged by any early cold weather.For more details on building a successful container garden and for suggestions on plant combinations, visit extension.uga.edu/publications/ and read “Success with Mixed Containers Using Perennial and Woody Plants” (Bulletin 1418).
The United State of America: Land of the free, home of the really freaking tired. According to the National Sleep Foundation, 74 percent of Americans experience some sort of sleep problem at least three nights a week, and 29 percent said they had fallen asleep at work within the last month.Not getting enough sleep has been linked to an increase in hypertension, obesity, heart attacks, fevers, and even premature death. A 2010 Penn State study found that people who log less than six hours a night of sleep are four times more likely to die prematurely of any cause than those who slept longer. Meanwhile, Americans are sleeping less and less each year. According to the most recent Sleep Foundation poll, we log an average 6:40 of sleep a night.“We’re not sleeping as much as we used to, and it’s rapidly becoming a public health concern,” says Dr. Chris Winter, the director of the Martha Jefferson Sleep Medicine Center in Charlottesville, Va. “Most people think about sleep as the absence of wakefulness. But sleep is an entirely separate process where lots of very important things are happening. If you’re not getting deep sleep, you’re not spiking that growth hormone which affects muscle growth, your immune system, everything that goes into well-being.”Recent studies at Stanford University suggest extra sleep can dramatically improve athletic performance. Increasing sleep above eight hours a night for six weeks led to faster sprint times and quicker reaction times while improving the athlete’s sense of well-being.“I think within the next several years, sleep will follow the path of sports nutrition,” says Winter, who consults with a number of professional athletes. “In 2020, every team will consult with a sleep specialist. Every athlete will consider sleep a part of their training.”Many of the teams that Winter works with already employ “sleep extension” practices with injured athletes. The quantity and quality of sleep affects growth hormone and insulin levels, which improve recovery times.“If we improve athletes’ sleep, and they run faster or make more free throws, we can say to the rest of the world, ‘look at what an impact this can have on your quality of life,’” says Winter.By the Numbers6:40 Hours of sleep the average American adult gets per night, according to the Sleep Foundation annual poll.10:00 Hours of sleep Stanford students got nightly for six weeks during the sleep studies in 2009, showing impressive athletic gains in the process. 1 2