Five things worth sharing from the last week or so, brought to you by a different member of the Browser Media team every Friday.
This week’s My Five is by Kerry.
1. Twitter bot exposes gender pay gaps
Nothing attracts virtue signalling, hypocritical self promotion quite like an awareness day. This time it was the case of International Women’s Day, inevitably attracting companies to boast about how they support gender equality and celebrate their female colleagues and their careers.
The problem is, not all of those companies put their money where their mouths are, and were getting called out on it by the Gender Pay Gap Bot, which went viral on Tuesday when it revealed how much less the companies posting about International Women’s Day were paying their female employees than their male employees.
Employers were given fair warning, with the account’s bio stating “Employers, if you tweet about International Women’s Day, I’ll retweet your gender pay gap”, and as the retweeting began, so too did mass deleting of IWD posts by companies scared they were about to be exposed. Although it’s worth pointing out that a few did reply and provide the context behind their pay gaps.
It was only larger companies that could be exposed, as In the UK, companies with more than 250 employees are required to publicly share data about the differences in pay between men and women.
2. Facebook Protect feels very ‘2022’
Many people simply assumed it was a phishing scam when they received an email from Facebook this week, claiming “your account requires advanced security” and urging users to click a link urgently to enable Facebook Protect.
But it turns out, it’s a real thing. Facebook Protect is designed to provide an extra layer of security for high risk accounts and was originally created to help elected officials and political candidates avoid having their accounts hacked. With everything going on in the world, and increased threats of cyber attacks, Facebook has now extended Facbook Protect to include accounts with high numbers of followers, those associated with important Pages, or those that hold significance in the greater community.
It basically just helps people set up two-factor authentication, and forces Page admins to secure their accounts with two-factor authentication too, as well as use their real names, and confirm their locations, as part of the platform’s mission to help stop spread misinformation.
Here’s how to enable it, if you’re one of the privileged few.
3. Twitter launches privacy protected site on the dark web
Sticking with the theme of ‘wouldn’t it be nice if these things didn’t have to exist’, Twitter has launched a privacy protected version of its site to bypass surveillance and censorship after Russia restricted access to the platform.
Joining the likes of Facebook and the BBC, Twitter has made a version of its site available on Tor. It’s what is known as an ‘onion’ service, where users can access this version of the platform by downloading the Tor browser, which allows people to access sites on what is also referred to as the dark web. Instead of .com, onion sites have a .onion suffix.
This is possibly the most important and long-awaited tweet that I’ve ever composed.
On behalf of @Twitter, I am delighted to announce their new @TorProject onion service, at:https://t.co/Un8u0AEXeE pic.twitter.com/AgEV4ZZt3k
— Alec Muffett (@AlecMuffett) March 8, 2022
4. Page Experience for desktop has finished rolling out
This week Google confirmed that the page experience update for desktop has now finished rolling out, after nine days. It includes all the current signals of the mobile version of the page experience update, apart from, obviously, the page needing to be mobile-friendly.
The page experience update is now slowly rolling out for desktop. It will be complete by the end of March 2022. Learn more about the update: https://t.co/FQvMx3Ymaf
— Google Search Central (@googlesearchc) February 22, 2022
Realistically, this update is unlikely to cause any significant change, and is certainly nothing to panic about, but if you’ve been consciously working on improvements around usability and site speed on a desktop, then you might start to see your efforts rewarded.
5. Wheels vs doors
The internet did what it does best this week and distracted us all from real life with a debate about whether there are more wheels or doors in the world.
My mates and I are having the STUPIDEST debate…
And I am here for it.
Do you think there are more doors or wheels in the world?
— Ryan Nixon (@NewYorkNixon) March 5, 2022
My initial reaction was “there are nine million bicycles in Beijing” (thanks Katie), and none of those have doors, so it must be wheels. But then I quickly switched teams to doors when I saw tweets about skyscrapers and cruise ships, and (a personal turning point), cupboard doors.
The debate could go on forever, so personally, I’m happy to go with this theory:
There are exactly as many doors as there are wheels. Every time a door is created, a wheel of equal magnitude is created in the opposite direction
— Bobby Hoffman (@nomorebobby) March 10, 2022