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Alan Dershowitz is speaking at U of I on April 26

The attorney, who has represented Mike Tyson, Patty Hearst, and Jim Bakker, and who was part of the O.J. defense team, will be giving a public lecture at Foellinger Auditorium beginning at 7 p.m. The event is free.

His name has been in the news the past couple of days, because he had dinner with Trump on the heels of the Michael Cohen raids. He's been outspoken against the Mueller investigation, despite his liberal political leanings, and was particularly fired up about the raids in a segment on New Day this morning. If you've got a few minutes, it's a pretty interesting back and forth with Chris Cuomo.

Photo from Facebook
Video

Watch Illinois Senator Durbin (and other members of Congress) grill Mark Zuckerberg

“Mr. Zuckerberg, would you be comfortable sharing with us the name of the hotel you stayed in last night?”

This is what Senator Dick Durbin said to Zuck, which got some laughs, of course. I'm sure you can guess what Zuck responded with.

I realize this SPlog might seem like clickbait, given that this is more of a national (eh, global) issue. However, given that it's relevant to most everyone, seeing Durbin question Facebook Overlord Mark Zuckerberg at yesterday's hearing, it feels like an OK thing to post given that he's an Illinois representative.

A few weeks back, I posted about former U of I Professor Dr. Safiya Noble discussing this issue of privacy and Facebook. Yesterday, the hearing you've all been seeing float across the internet, and be made into memes time and time again, happened.

Watch Durbin's questioning first, and then go to the quick 3 minute highlight reel to check out what you missed. The whole testimony is out there, but that's five hours long. So, have fun with that if you desire.

Top photo screenshot from the video.

Video

You should know that Sinclair Broadcast Group’s WICS/WICD broadcasts in C-U

Over the weekend, Deadspin published this article and video discussing the Sinclair Broadcast Group. The group owns roughly 200 television stations across the country, has recently been under heavy criticism after the video circulated with dozens of stations reading the same script criticizing so-called "fake news" stories.

This is a monster story, but not really one that should surprise many considering how conglomerated the media landscape has become. John Oliver discussed this on his show Last Week Tonight months ago, and commented on it today as it has resurfaced since the Deadspin post, calling the group a "brainwashed cult".

So, here's something that stood out to me this weekend, after looking through the link that Deadspin provided, which lists which stations are owned and operated by this media group:

One of those stations, WICS, is based in Springfield, and owned by this group. Their affiliate, WICD, is a station that broadcasts to Champaign, Urbana, and Danville. This is information that's being broadcast in this community.

If you haven't watched the video, you should. You can see it below.

Donald Trump has defended Sinclair today.

If you're interested in learning more about this Sinclair Broadcast Group's recent activity, look no further than this New York Times article about their intents to purchase Tribune Media, which has been a battle with the Justice Department for many months.

Top photo is a screenshot from Deadspin's video.

Video

Watch former U of I Professor Dr. Safiya Noble discuss Facebook on CNN

Former U of I professor Dr. Safiya Umoja Noble is now at the University of Southern California (USC) Annenberg School of Communication, and her academic research focuses on the design of digital media platforms on the internet and their impact on society. She just published a book called Algorithms of Oppression (and we posted about her a short time ago), and was recently featured on CNN to discuss the recent issues with Facebook's privacy and how they've handled user data.

Watch the clip below:

Top photo is a screenshot from the video.
Video

Champaign Park District Eggstravaganza is this Saturday

Have kids ages 10 and under? Give 'em a basket and head to West Side Park on Saturday. There will be hayrack rides from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m., and a giant egg hunt will happen at 11 a.m. Here are more details from the Facebook event:

Eggstravaganza - FREE
March 31 @ West Side Park
Hayrack Rides: 10am-Noon (weather permitting)
Egg Hunt: 11am SHARP

Ages: Children ages 10 and under. Adult supervision required.

Join Champaign Park District at West Side Park where thousands of eggs wait to be found. Free hayrack rides will take place from 10am-Noon and there will be a special guest on site for all the little egg hunters to enjoy! Don’t forget your basket – the egg hunt starts at 11am sharp! Age divisions will be labeled in different sections of the park.

*Bring a basket or bag!!

Here's a video of the event from a few years back...cute kids scrambling for candy!

Photo from Facebook

Video

CUDO Plays hosting fifth annual Grand Exhibition on Sunday

Game enthusiasts rejoice! Sunday, March 11th from 1 to 8 p.m. you can head over to Broadway Food Hall to be a play games designed by CUDO Plays, a local board game competition. The event is free, and there are games available for all skill levels. Here's more info from their website:

CUDO Plays, your local Board Game Design Competition, is excited to announce that it’s holding its fifth annual Grand Exhibition on Sunday, March 11th from 1-8pm at the brand new Broadway Food Hall in Urbana!

CUDO Plays brings together local gamers, designers, and makers to build unique, homemade board games. Twenty-two teams submitted original board games this season and the Grand Exhibition will give them an opportunity to show them off to the public and commemorate their efforts. Each game will be playable by attendees. At the end of the evening, teams will be awarded prizes for excellence in the following categories: Accessibility, Marketability, Replay Value, Craft, Visual Design, Enrichment, Innovation, and Theme.

This is a free, family-friendly event, and anyone with an interest in board gaming or design is invited to stop by and experience the wonderful local creations. There will be a diverse range of games, everything from building contraptions to win a Queen’s favor to jamming out in a band! With a delightful mix of eclectic genres and skill levels, there’s something for everybody.

A breakdown of the Grand Exhibition:
1pm – 5pm: Gaming
5pm – 7:00pm: Dinner, featuring the restaurants and bar of Broadway Food Hall!
7:00pm: Awards Ceremony

CUDO Plays is sponsored mainly by local businesses, with prizes provided by Gopher Mafia Games, Live Action Games, Titan Games, Dr. G’s Brainworks, Volition, the Indie Game Alliance, Print and Play Games, and The Game Crafter.

For more information about CUDO Plays, please visit cudoplays.com

Video / Word

Hasan Minhaj is coming to the Illini Union on April 2

Comedian, actor, and The Daily Show veteran Hasan Minhaj is coming to the Illini Union on April 2. Admission is free with i-card.

Hasan Minhaj is fresh off a banner year in 2017, performing at the 2017 White House Correspondents' Dinner and getting critical acclaim for his Netflix comedy special Homecoming King.

Here's Hasan roasting the US government, something that unites us as a disgruntled people:

Video

AgTech Innovation Summit returns to Champaign tomorrow

From the press release

Experts at the intersection of agriculture and technology will meet on Wednesday, February 28, during the third annual Agriculture Technology Innovation Summit hosted by the University of Illinois Research Park.

The Agriculture Technology Innovation Summit provides attendees a look at cutting-edge trends and insights into this ever-evolving field. It features panelists from across the AgTech ecosystem, from innovators to academics, leading ag corporations to growers, investors and startups.

Attendees also include AgTech startups from all over the Midwest, many of whom are participating in the Midwest I-Corps Node Industry Connect program, which is funded by the National Science Foundation.

The event will take place at the I-Hotel and Conference Center in Champaign from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. A multinational audience of over 300 people are registered.

A full news release is available at:
http://researchpark.illinois.edu/news/agriculture-technology-innovation-summit