A new Life of Tech


James DeGale aiming to dethrone only champion in Floyd Mayweather stable

James DeGale and Eddie Hearn

No fighter was ever able to beat Floyd Mayweather Jr in the ring but James DeGale can do the next best thing when he faces Badou Jack in a super middleweight title unification fight on Saturday night in Brooklyn.

DeGale, the 30-year-old from London who holds the IBF championship at 168lbs, is expected to beat Jack, the WBC belt-holder, in one of the best fights that can be made in the division today.

A victory in the main event of a stacked card at the Barclays Center would not only help DeGale consolidate power at super‑middleweight and build anticipation for a blockbuster outdoor homecoming fight back home in the spring but it could dethrone the lone world champion in Mayweather’s nascent promotional stable.

Mayweather, who retired more than 16 months ago, was back in the headlines this week when he resurrected talk of a three fight showdown with the UFC superstar Conor McGregor, one that would generate stupefying amounts of revenue but ultimately carry no greater significance than Breezy v Soulja Boy.

However, as he spoke on Thursday behind designer sunglasses during the press conference at the Highline Ballroom in Manhattan’s Chelsea neighbourhood, Mayweather’s promotional hat appeared snugly fit. “Am I coming back? Absolutely not,” he said. “I want to live through these fighters.”

DeGale could deliver a setback to those plans on Saturday should he prevail, leaving the Mayweather Promotions stable of a little more than a dozen fighters without a world champion for the first time since Ishe Smith captured a light middleweight strap to break the company’s maiden in February 2013.

Eddie Hearn, who promotes DeGale, is confident his fighter can pull it off. “Badou Jack is a great fighter, an underrated fighter, but this guy here is a whole other level,” Hearn said. “Styles make fights but there isn’t really a style to beat James DeGale. He adapts to anything.”

Should the 30-year-old southpaw known as Chunky get through next Saturday’s challenge and emerge as the No1 name in the super middleweight division, there were will be no shortage of options. That could include a showdown with Andre Ward, the longtime 168lb champion who in November won the unified light-heavyweight title from Sergey Kovalev by a razor-thin decision.


Twitter founder feels ‘complicated’ about Donald Trump’s tweeting

Jack Dorsey conceded that Donald Trump excelled in his use of Twitter.
Jack Dorsey conceded that Donald Trump excelled in his use of Twitter. Photograph: Jim Lo Scalzo/EPA

For the first time, Twitter’s chief executive, Jack Dorsey, has described his “complicated” feelings about the US president-elect Donald Trump’s use of the social media service.

Speaking at the Code Commerce conference in California, Dorsey demurred when asked if he felt responsible for Trump’s election. “America is responsible for Donald Trump being president,” he said, before conceding that, more than any other candidate, Trump excelled in his use of Twitter.

“He’s known how to use it for quite some time. I think it’s an important time for the company and service. And having the president-elect on our service, using it as a direct line of communication, allows everyone to see what’s on his mind in the moment. I think that’s interesting. I think it’s fascinating. I haven’t seen that before.

“We’re definitely entering a new world where everything is on the surface and we can all see it in real time and we can have conversations about it. Where does that go? I’m not really sure. But it’s definitely been fascinating to learn from.”

Asked how he felt about Trump’s use of the service, Dorsey said: “Complicated”.

“I feel very proud of the role of the service and what it stands for and everything that we’ve done, and that continues to accelerate every single day. Especially as it’s had such a spotlight on it through his usage and through the election.”

More than any other social network, Twitter has taken a stand against the surge of far-right activity that followed Donald Trump’s victory. A few days after the election, the company announced a host of new safety features, including a crackdown on hate speech and a renewed focus on training its moderators to better react to threats of violence and hateful conduct.

“The amount of abuse, bullying, and harassment seen across the internet has risen sharply over the past few years,” Twitter said at the time. “In the worst cases, this type of conduct threatens human dignity, which we should all stand together to protect.”

That same day, Twitter banned a host of notable “alt-right” users, members of the far-right subculture who push a meme-filled variant of traditional white supremacist views. Banned accounts included that of Richard B Spencer, a white nationalist Trump supporter who hosted a conference last month where supporters gave Nazi salutes.

While Twitter has received praise from some for taking action, the move has also raised difficult questions for the company: what would it do if the president-elect tweeted views that his supporters have been banned from the network for expressing?


Only 20% of US adults have information overload, but those who do feel burden

Even though there are greater flows of information, people have more tools to help them deal with it, senior researcher John Horrigan said.
Even though there are greater flows of information, people have more tools to help them deal with it, senior researcher John Horrigan said. Photograph: Jeff Huang / Alamy/Alamy

Some 20% of American adults feel the burden of information overload, with that figure at least doubling among those from poorer or less educated backgrounds, according to a report released today by the Pew Research Center.

“The large majority of Americans do not feel that information overload is a problem for them,” the authors of the report said, pointing out that fewer Americans feel overloaded now than they did in 2006, when the figure was 27%. Furthermore, 77% of US adults say they like having so much information at their fingertips.

“We thought it was surprising that the rate was so low and that it has fallen fairly substantially in the last decade,” said senior researcher John Horrigan. He suggested that the decline in people reporting information overload is due to the increased availability of digital access tools such as tablet computers, smartphones and broadband.

“Even though there are greater flows of information flying around, we think the fact that people have more tools to help them allows them to deal with it,” he said.

However, the sense of “information overwhelm” is made worse by the digital divide. “Those who are more likely to feel information overload have less technology and are poorer, less well-educated and older,” the authors said.

Forty-five percent of people with high school degrees sometimes feel stressed about the amount of information they have to follow, compared with 39% of those with college degrees or more. Similarly, 47% of those whose household income is less than $30,000 sometimes feel stressed by the information they have to keep track of compared with 39% of those earning more than $75,000.

The problem becomes even more acute in specific situations when institutions such as banks, government agencies or schools impose high information demands on people.

“There are some members of society that don’t have the range of tools that many of us do. They are the ones that feel the stress. It suggests that institutions might want to be more patient with parts of the population who may not be as digitally sophisticated,” Horrigan said.

“Information overload is a terrible scourge of modern society,” said Jonathan Spira, author of Overload, a book that examines the cost of the problem to businesses. “It has caused people to lose their ability to manage thoughts and ideas, contemplate, and even reason and think.

“After 15 years of studying the problem of information overload I was so overloaded I had to find something else to do.”

Spira believes, contrary to Pew’s research, that the problem is getting worse and that it is illustrated by the current epidemic of fake news. “That’s an information overload problem. There is so much information out there that people are no longer able to distinguish between legitimate information and fake news.”

Information overload is not without its upsides, according to Pew’s report. “People’s abilities to access information online can open new doors to knowledge, facilitate connections with friends and make all sorts of transactions convenient,” researchers said.