Fast Facts

Gary Pattillo is reference librarian at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, e-mail: pattillo@email.unc.edu

Colleges that received the most applications

“More than 100,000 people applied for fall 2017 admission into the undergraduate program at the University of California-Los Angeles, which received more applications than any other ranked school in the U.S. News Best Colleges rankings. UCLA had about 13,800 more applicants than the school with the second-highest number of applicants: the University of California-San Diego. Eight of the 10 undergraduate institutions with the most applicants are public schools based in California.”

Ilana Kowarski, “10 Colleges That Received the Most Applications | The Short List: Colleges,” U.S. News & World Report, October 30, 2018, https://www.usnews.com/education/best-colleges/the-short-list-college/articles/colleges-that-received-the-most-applications (retrieved January 8, 2019).

Book sales

“As of the end of 2017, about 45 percent (up from 37 percent in 2015) of all print sales and 83 percent of all ebook sales happen through Amazon channels.”

Craig Mod, “The ‘Future Book’ Is Here, but It’s Not What We Expected,” Wired, December 20, 2018, https://www.wired.com/story/future-book-is-here-but-not-what-we-expected (retrieved January 7, 2019).

Imprisoned journalists

“For the third year in a row, 251 or more journalists are jailed around the world, suggesting the authoritarian approach to critical news coverage is more than a temporary spike. China, Egypt, and Saudi Arabia imprisoned more journalists than last year, and Turkey remained the world’s worst jailer.”

Elana Beiser, “Hundreds of Journalists Jailed Globally Becomes the New Normal,” Committee to Protect Journalists, December 13, 2018, https://cpj.org/reports/2018/12/journalists-jailed-imprisoned-turkey-china-egypt-saudi-arabia.php (retrieved January 8, 2019).

“How Much of the Internet Is Fake?”

“Year after year, less than 60 percent of web traffic is human; some years, according to some researchers, a healthy majority of it is bot. For a period of time in 2013, the Times reported this year, a full half of YouTube traffic was ‘bots masquerading as people.’” Metrics to measure web traffic are unreliable, fake accounts abound on social media, and significant portions of text content and video are fake and/or auto-generated and driven by algorithms.

Max Read, “How Much of the Internet Is Fake?” New York Magazine Intelligencer, December 26, 2018, http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2018/12/how-much-of-the-internet-is-fake.html (retrieved January 7, 2019).

Social media accounts

In one study, “32 percent of all users in the UK and U.S. say they have deactivated or closed a social media account in the past 12 months. More men (37 percent) have closed or deactivated an account than women (25 percent) in both the UK and the U.S.

Nisa Bayindir, “The Progress of Social Media as a Social Tool,” GlobalWebIndex Blog, September 25, 2018, https://blog.globalwebindex.com/chart-of-the-week/how-social-is-social-media (retrieved January 7, 2019).

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