A couple weeks ago, Sonny Bunch observed that VOX DOT COM, the eight-figure juicebox upstart dedicated to “explaining the news,” can seem unbearably pointless at times, and is pretty terrible at explaining things.
Ezra Klein set out to “fix the news,” by adding “crucial context,” promising to deliver a “completely different product” utilizing a “mix of technological and workflow approaches.” The mission of VOX DOT DOM, he said, was to “build stuff that would be useful for people,” or even to “build a new culture.”
And what does that “new culture” look like?
The federal government is studying how to use Twitter for surveillance on depressed people.
The University of California, San Diego (UCSD) began a study financed by the National Institutes of Health last month that will provide “population level depression monitoring” through the social media site.
The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is paying six figures to a group that worked for the “Obama for America” campaign to monitor its social media platforms so it can be more effective on Facebook and Twitter.