Trump challenges fail, Facebook's ineffective policy, playing Diana Spencer
THE BIG STORY
Here's what all the good news about coronavirus vaccines means for you
For starters, healthcare workers could start receiving vaccine shots as early as December. Yes, this December.
Yesterday, the pharmaceutical company Moderna said its vaccine is more than 94% effective. Moderna is the second to report such promising results, after Pfizer announced its early vaccine data. Both companies' results did not include the actual data from their trial and have yet to be peer-reviewed.
How far are the vaccines away from approval? Because the majority of severe side effects from vaccines come in the first two months after someone gets the shots, the FDA is requiring that companies collect two months of safety data before they ask the agency to authorize wider distribution. Moderna and Pfizer both said they expected to have that data available within weeks.
Both vaccines require two shots — Pfizer's shots are given four weeks apart, Moderna's three weeks.
With these favorable results, distribution will move quickly. Most states have plans that include starting with vaccines for healthcare workers, then vulnerable populations and essential workers. Dr. Anthony Fauci and other experts have suggested that mass vaccination in the US can start around April.
Gonna be a bright, bright, bright sunshiny day. BuzzFeed News; Getty Images
STAYING ON TOP OF THIS
Trump and Republicans had a very bad 72 hours in court trying to challenge election results
Donald Trump's campaign hasn't focused its legal efforts to challenge the results on one state or one issue, instead pursuing challenges big and small across the country.
But despite the campaign's messaging that the sheer quantity of legal challenges speaks to a deeper problem with the legitimacy of the election, judges haven't handed down decisions to validate that rhetoric.
The bulk of the challenges that are still active are in Pennsylvania. Since Friday, state and federal judges in the state have rejected Trump's challenges to small batches of ballots ranging from the hundreds to the low thousands. It's worth noting that Joe Biden leads in Pennsylvania by 68,000 votes.
Immigration officials have been told not to communicate with Joe Biden's transition team. An official at the agency that oversees US immigration and naturalization services told employees not to communicate with the president-elect's transition team until a Trump appointee "deems the results 'clear'" and recognizes the winner of the election.
This neo-Nazi group is organizing on Facebook despite a year-old ban. Ukraine's Azov movement, which the State Department calls a "nationalist hate group," is running ads, organizing violence, and exporting its far-right ideas.
Facebook has a rule to stop calls to arms. Moderators didn't enforce it ahead of the Kenosha shootings. We've learned that Facebook failed to enforce a year-old call to arms policy that specifically prohibited event pages from encouraging people to bring weapons to intimidate and harass vulnerable individuals.
NOT VERY EFFECTIVE
Facebook knows that adding labels to Trump's false claims does little to stop their spread
In the last couple of weeks, Trump has repeatedly spread false information questioning President-elect Biden's victory. These posts have received massive engagement on Facebook.
The social media company has attempted to temper this by adding labels to the false claims directing people to accurate information about the election and its results.
The data scientist said the labels on Trump's claims "decreases their reshares by ~8%" but because the president's posts get so much engagement, "the decrease is not going to change shares by orders of magnitude."
IT MIGHT BE AWKWARD
Emma Corrin, who plays Princess Diana on The Crown, said she'd probably leave if she saw Prince William or Harry at a party
Corrin plays Diana Spencer in the show's first portrayal of the Princess of Wales. She'll only appear for one season — in Seasons 5 and 6, the role will be played by Elizabeth Debicki — but Corrin's portrayal has earned her rave reviews.
She told GQ she can't imagine what Prince William or Harry think of the show. "If someone made a programme about my grandma, who died last year, that would be difficult for me to watch," she told the magazine.