Link About It: This Week’s Picks

Donating frequent flyer miles to migrants, unveiling Minecraft's Uncensored Library, archiving the internet and more from around the web

Miles4Migrants Donates Frequent Flyer Miles to Those in Need

Miles4Migrants, a non-profit founded back in 2016, has been using donated frequent flyer miles to provide people impacted by war, violence, persecution and disaster with the opportunity to migrate safely. Focused on individuals and families who are legally allowed to travel, but can’t afford airfares, Miles4Migrants relies on public donations and also collaborates with other non-profits to make these difficult journeys a little easier. In just two days this week, between 16 and 18 August, the organization received 52 million frequent flyer miles and credit card points, $15,000 in travel vouchers and $100,000 in cash donations. Find out more about the organization at Miles4Migrants.

Image courtesy of Miles4Migrants

The Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine is More Important Than Ever

A non-profit library supporting more than 400 billion archived web pages, the Internet Archive turns 25 this year. While new content appears every second, much of the internet also continues to disappear through shut downs, updates, transformations and changing culture. Thus, the archive’s Wayback Machine has become an even more important tool. It’s not only about design preservation, but also fundamental to protecting the history of the internet as events unfurled and facts were shared. Further, “anyone can be a citizen archivist and preserve history,” Fast Company reports. Read more about the necessity of saving internet history there.

Image courtesy of tussik13/iStock 

Hedgerows Provide an Important Climate Solution

A trademark of the English garden, the hedgerow provides more than privacy and represents more than a cliche; the humble shrub offers an important climate solution. Britain already boasts 310,000 miles of hedgerow, but the Climate Change Committee (an independent entity based in the UK, founded under the Climate Change Act 2008) suggests planting 40% more by 2050, as they “slow down the runoff of water, guarding against flooding and soil erosion, and act as barriers to help prevent pesticide and fertilizer pollution getting into water supplies.” Hedgerows also help with air quality as they trap pollution. While we often think of massive forests providing the climate solutions we need, planting hedges is something many individuals can do help, making the climate crisis feel slightly less hopeless. Read more at The Guardian.

Image courtesy of Steven Booth/Alamy

Reporters Without Borders’ Uncensored Library in Minecraft

The non-profit Reporters Without Borders and creative advertising agency DDB have assembled a virtual repository for freedom of the press, aptly named The Uncensored Library, inside the game Minecraft. Thanks to blockchain technology, governments are unable to surveil or censor any of the content within, which aims to provide gamers with otherwise banned articles. The entire library can be downloaded as an offline map for gamers to read. In conjunction with design studio BlockWorks, and informed by the design of the New York Public Library, 24 people from 16 countries used 12.5 million “digital Lego blocks” to construct the virtual destination. Read more about the library’s contents and mission at Dezeen.

Image courtesy of Minecraft 

Eruptions Result in Mount Etna Growing 100 Feet

In just six months, one of Italy’s three active volcanoes, Mount Etna (located on the east coast of Sicily), has grown 100 feet taller due to its 50 eruptions. Satellite images reveal that the most active of the volcano’s four summit craters is now the tallest at 11,013 feet above sea level. Mount Etna actually began its life as a submarine volcano that “slowly grew above sea level as it erupted, time and again, gradually increasing its height with solidified lava,” according to Space. It has erupted some 200 times each year since the first recorded eruption back in 1500 BC. Read more about this topographic growth at Space.

Image courtesy of Shawn Appel/Unsplash

Link About It is our filtered look at the web, shared daily in Link and on social media, and rounded up every Saturday morning. Hero image courtesy of Minecraft