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June 22 2018

14:56
ISP: Piracy “Extortion Letters” Benefit ‘Greedy’ Companies, Not Poor Artists
07:35
TVAddons Founder “Resigns” to Ensure Kodi Addon Platform’s Longevity

June 21 2018

17:55
Cloudflare Settles Dangerous Piracy Liability Lawsuit
16:20

Welcome Atavist! A Groundbreaking Publishing Platform Joins the WordPress.com Family

Today we’re announcing that Atavist, a multimedia publishing platform and award-winning magazine, will be joining WordPress.com parent company Automattic.

This news is exciting to me on a few levels — eight years ago I had my first introduction to Atavist when I met a journalist named Evan Ratliff for coffee at Housing Works in New York. He showed me the first pieces of what became a bold new platform for long-form storytelling, which he created with co-founders Jefferson Rabb and Nicholas Thompson. At the time I had just started Longreads, so we shared an interest in seeing a revival for long-form journalism on the open web.

Fast-forward to today and we’re thrilled to have the Atavist and Longreads teams now together under the WordPress.com banner. Atavist’s publishing platform will be moving over to WordPress, and its award-winning magazine The Atavist will continue to serve up outstanding in-depth storytelling with a new feature each month, under the editorship of Seyward Darby. Also joining the team is Atavist CEO Rabb and head of product communications Kathleen Ross.

I chatted with Rabb, Darby, and Ross about what’s next.

Jeff, Seyward, Kathleen, we’re excited you’re here! You’ve had a terrific run over the past eight years — leading innovation around the design and process of multimedia storytelling, winning many awards along the way — what are your hopes and priorities for Atavist moving forward?

RABB: Thank you, I’m thrilled to be here! My number one hope in joining [WordPress.com parent company] Automattic is to bring everything we have built and learned to an audience that is orders of magnitude larger. I’ve spent the past eight years honing a toolset and sensibility for digital journalism, and now I’m excited to put this to use for a mass audience. When these are integrated into WordPress, I am hoping we will have an unbeatable product for storytelling and journalism. There are many fascinating challenges and problems in journalism today, and now more than ever I want to be part of the solution.

DARBY: I’m also excited to be here! I’ve been at The Atavist Magazine for the last 15 months, and it’s the best job I’ve ever had. The list of things I love about our publication is too long to include in full, but some highlights are the intimate collaborations with creators, the anchoring belief in the timeless power of cinematic storytelling, and the commitment to nurturing the next generation of long-form writers. Certainly, we work with big-name journalists, but we’re also a magazine that supports up-and-coming narrative writers who want to take a swing at a really, really big story. I love nothing more than helping someone crack the code on a 15,000-word feature’s complex structure. (I’m a big fan of Post-It notes and story trees, and of fist-pumping to no one in particular when an article section falls into place.)

Moving forward, the magazine’s foundational priorities will remain the same: We’ll tell great stories, design them beautifully, treat our collaborators well, and have a lot of fun in the process. My hope is that, by combining forces with WordPress.com, we’ll get to push the boundaries of our projects: dive into more multi-part narrative investigations, produce more original video or audio where it makes good sense, improve the diversity of our roster of writers and artists, and provide journalists with the resources and time they need to report the hell out of topics they’re passionate about.

Winning awards and getting our stories optioned for film/TV, which we also have a strong track record of doing, will be goals, absolutely, but never at the expense of providing a quality experience to every person who contributes to or reads The Atavist.

Tell us about some of your favorite stories you’ve hosted.

DARBY: I’m proud of every story I’ve shepherded as the executive editor, so it’s hard for me to pick favorites. The most successful Atavist stories share the same key ingredients: a propulsive, satisfying narrative, rich characters, and scenes that make readers feel immersed in the world the writer is describing. At first blush, Kenneth R. Rosen’s story “The Devil’s Henchmen,” about what is being done with the bodies of the ISIS dead in Mosul, doesn’t seem to have much in common with Amitha Kalaichandran’s “Losing Conner’s Mind,” about a family’s quest to save a child from a rare, fatal disease; Allyn Gaestel’s “Things Fall Apart,” about an over-hyped art installation in Nigeria; Mike Mariani’s “Promethea Unbound,” about the tortured life of a child genius; or David Mark Simpson’s “Not Fuzz,” about a millionaire hotelier who moonlights as a serial police impersonator. Yet these stories all have compelling plots about everyday people whose lives are shaped by sheer will and unpredictable circumstance. You can’t put them down because you want to know what’s going to happen.

As for Atavist stories that predate my time at the magazine, I’ll award a few superlatives. Quirkiest goes to Jon Mooallem’s “American Hippopotamus,” about a bizarre plan to alter the national diet. Most Lyrical goes to Leslie Jamison’s “52 Blue,” about the world’s loneliest whale. Most Ambitious goes to Evan Ratliff’s epic “The Mastermind,” about a crime lord whose empire spanned pretty much the whole world. (It’s soon to be a book and TV show.) And Couldn’t Get It Out of My Head goes to Will Hunt and Matt Wolfe’s “The Ghosts of Pickering Trail,” about a family living in a haunted house. I’ll stop there, but I really could go on and on.

ROSS: Before I worked for Atavist, I actually worked right down the hall, so I have been reading the magazine for a long time. To me, the best Atavist Magazine stories are transporting: in “Welcome to Dog World,” Blair Braverman shows us Alaska; socialites head to Sioux Falls, South Dakota, for an early feminist victory in “The Divorce Colony” by April White; and James Verini’s “Love and Ruin” (the title story of our 2016 collection) is a romance and historical epic all in one, and I think about Nancy Hatch Dupree’s library in Afghanistan often. “A Family Matter” may be one of the most important stories we’ve done. Finally, I love stories about spectacular failures, so I have to mention Mitch Moxley’s article “Sunk,” which is about a disastrous attempt to make an epic movie about mermaids; plus, the piece has some excellent moments of maximalist design, including pixelated fish that bob across the page.

RABB: I have a soft spot for the very first stories such as “Lifted,” “Piano Demon,” and “My Mother’s Lover.” In addition to being great pieces of writing, they were the petri dishes in which our experimental approach to storytelling was born. They included ideas such as pop-up annotations, maps, and immersive sound elements. Even though the way we distribute our articles has changed dramatically since those stories were published—back then, they were exclusively on the Atavist mobile app and Kindle—many of the concepts and approaches in them formed the DNA of our company’s product. Developing those first few stories was an exciting and vital time for me.

Finally, I’m wondering what you think about the state of storytelling on the open web today. Where do you think things are headed?

DARBY: There are so many stories being told in the digital space right now, in so many ways, and to so many different audiences. Take SKAM Austin, which D.T. Max recently wrote about for The New Yorker. It’s a teen drama told entirely through Facebook posts, Instagram stories, texts, and other digital scraps and marginalia—a story crafted for its young target audience, based on the way they consume information and communicate with one another. That project is fictional, but there’s similar experimentation happening in the non-fiction space. Certainly, publications are pushing the envelope on transmedia (multi-platform storytelling) and rethinking story structure based on how events now unfold in real time in the palm of your hand. I’m thinking of projects like WIRED‘s story on police brutality, “How Social Media Shaped the Three Days That Shook America,” and National Geographic‘s partnership with ProPublica, “How the U.S. Triggered a Massacre in Mexico.” Recently, I was a fellow at the Sundance Institute’s New Frontier Lab, an incubator for storytellers who work with emerging technologies like VR, AR, and AI. It was incredible to hear the ways that this diverse group is reimagining how to create and deliver narratives. I can’t wait for all of the projects they were workshopping to be out in the world, and I hope to bring what I learned there to bear on my work at Automattic.

That said, I’m a journalist first, and when it comes to technology, I always have this nagging fear that form might compromise substance. No one should tell a story entirely via social media or VR or video just because they can; they should do so because there’s actual benefit—to the story itself, to the audience reached, and so on. I’m reminded of my very first job out of college, back in the aughts. I was a journalist in Eastern Europe and Central Asia, and I also conducted research on media training needs in the region. I met lots of aspiring journalists who said, “This international NGO helped me set up a blog, but I don’t even really know how to conduct an interview or fact-check. Can someone help me with that?” The experience has always stuck with me as a reminder that the basics of great journalism should apply no matter the platform. At The Atavist, we like to say that story comes first, and by that we mean plot and accuracy, then form and reach.

16:00
Contributing to the AMP Project
14:00

Bookmark Posts with Save For Later

Maybe you’re reading a blog post while sipping your morning tea when you suddenly realize it’s getting late, or you’re browsing on the bus — but you just got to your stop.

The WordPress.com Reader is a great tool for catching up with your favorite blogs or exploring interesting new reads. And now, you can save those posts and resume reading at your leisure with Save For Later.

How does it work?

First, make sure you have the newest version of the  WordPress app on your phone or tablet — version 10.2. Open the app, and head into the Reader.

Saving content for later

Whenever you find a post you’d like to save for later, tap the bookmark icon (Bookmark outlined). The icon will change from an outline to a solid color (Bookmark solid background) so you know the post has been saved.

Repeat the process as many times as you like! You can save posts from your list of Followed Sites, Discover, Search, or My Likes — anywhere in the Reader.

Reading your saved content

When you’re ready to read, open the app again, go back to the Reader, and select Saved Posts. Everything you saved will be waiting for you there, even if your device is offline.

Once you’ve read a post, you can remove it by tapping the bookmark icon again.

A few other notes

In this initial release, images aren’t guaranteed to be available offline. More importantly, Saved Posts is currently a device-specific feature — saved posts aren’t synced between devices or the web, so they’re only available on the device where you saved them. Logging out or uninstalling the app will delete them.

Give feedback and get involved

The WordPress mobile apps are free and available on both Android and iOS.

If you have any questions or feedback, reach out to our in-app support team by tapping Me → Help & Support → Contact Us.

If you’re a developer and would like to contribute to the project, learn how you can get involved .

Happy reading, now or later!

 

09:11
Nintendo Switch Piracy is “Unstoppable” – Until People Go Online

June 20 2018

17:10
SET TV Tells Netflix, Amazon & Hollywood That it’s “No Longer Available”
16:00
Google Summer of Code 2018 statistics part 2
09:35
EU Parliament Committee Adopts Piracy ‘Upload Filter’ Proposal

June 19 2018

16:18
Think Tank: Congress Should Make Streaming Piracy a Felony
13:37
The Pirate Bay’s Frozen in Time, No New Uploads
07:38
BitTorrent Is Reportedly Selling for $140 Million
00:01

Field Notes: WooCommerce Workshop for Women

Automatticians, the people who build WordPress.com, participate in events and projects around the world every day. Periodically, they report back on the exciting things they do in the community.

Members of Automattic’s Happiness team have traveled to Southeast Asia three times since last September to meet people in communities across the region. Our goal? To encourage people based in South Asia to apply to join us in supporting WordPress.com, WooCommerce, and Jetpack users.

In January 2018, the Happiness Engineer Hiring team, our Events Team, and Mahangu Weerasinghe, a Happiness team lead, collaborated to take a slightly different approach to recruitment in the region. Automattic is a company that aims to build a diverse and inclusive work environment, yet we’d been seeing significantly lower numbers of women applying from South and Southeast Asia. There are a few efforts in the WordPress community to encourage and empower women to get more involved, and we decided the add our voice by organizing a workshop for women. Our plan was straightforward: a free, one-day workshop to inspire participants to set up an online store for themselves or put their newfound skills to use for clients. We talked about the Membership and Subscription extensions for WooCommerce and the Sensei plugin — invaluable tools for enhancing an online store, setting up recurring payments, and managing memberships.

The first workshop took place in January. We chose Udaipur, India, thanks to its strong WordPress community. We attended WordCamp Udaipur, which was organized by an all-female team, and took the opportunity to staff a booth there while our colleague, Rahul Gupta, gave a presentation about how WordPress helped him put food on the table. The next day, we welcomed 40 women to the workshop, exceeding our expectations and requiring us to bring in extra seats!

After the workshop, we invited the community to join us for networking over tea and chatted again with some of the folks we’d met the day before. While the main focus of our trip was outreach to women, we also wanted to do something for the larger community.

One of the attendees was Digication’s Surbhi Jain, who works on digital literacy and skills in India and runs WordPress workshops for students — including in remote areas — increasing awareness and teaching WordPress hands-on. Surbhi attended our workshop to level up her skills and to network, and she’s been helping us spread the word about our hiring efforts since the event.

From Udaipur we traveled to Mumbai, where we taught an abbreviated version of the workshop to women of the local WordPress meetup community. We invited them to learn about options they could use to turn their online store into a membership site and to create and manage products with recurring payments.

We had such a positive response in India that we decided to try the workshop model in Singapore, a city with a strong technology community. The Happiness Engineer Hiring team, affectionately known as Athena, met up with Leviosa, another Happiness team, to co-host the workshop. Two team members, Kruti Dugade and Rose Pajaroja, led the sessions. Kruti had recently joined Automattic — after attending our visit to the Mumbai WordPress user group in September! Again, we drew from the local WordPress community to find attendees and also reached out to other women-in-tech groups. Just like in India, we had a very positive response.

One of my favorite moments during this trip happened at the networking event directly following the workshop. I was standing in a circle of six women — three young women who worked at a web-design firm together, one woman in her 50s who was running a successful family-powered marketing business, an expat from the US, and me. We chatted for quite a while as they shared the struggles and joys of tech in Singapore. It was fascinating to get a glimpse of their work and lives, and learn about the commonalities and differences in our experiences of navigating both.

Since this series of events, we’ve seen an increase of applicants from the region, both male and female. We’ve already hired two new Automatticians from among the people we met during our trip and hope to welcome more in the months to come.

As we strive to provide world-class support to our customers in South and Southeast Asia, we want our team to reflect as many of the diverse communities across this vast region. If you or someone you know is interested, we’re hiring.

Meeting new WordPress friends in India in Singapore was a wonderful experience. While we don’t currently have plans for similar workshops, we hope to have more opportunities in the future to connect with people from other regions.

June 18 2018

12:59
YouTube’s Blocks MIT Courses, Blender Videos, and More (Updated)
08:07
Foxtel Pirate Site Blocking Application Could Be Granted in Record Time
07:09
Top 10 Most Pirated Movies of The Week on BitTorrent – 06/18/18

June 17 2018

17:15
Torrents Turn Rambo-Prequel Novel into a Success
09:40
Sceper Set to Return After Attempted Sale “Turned Into a Scam”

June 16 2018

17:38
U.S. Drops Indictment Against Alleged Operator of Pirate App Store
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