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Unicorn Riot Can’t Livestream via Twitter, ‘Perhaps Permanently’

Plus positive U of M updates, dog influenza closes shelters, and KinhDo kicks it in today's Flyover.

Facebook: Unicorn Riot|

Unicorn Riot encountering Minnesota State Patrol in 2022.

Welcome back to The Flyover, your daily digest of what local media outlets and Twitter-ers are gabbing about.

No More Live Unicorn Rioting on Twitter

Remember back when lazy media narratives around the Arab Spring exalted social media companies for their transformative, democratizing powers to enact social and political change? Seems like a million years ago. These days, a shitposting billionaire huckster holds the reigns at Twitter, and his free-speech blustering appears more fraudulent by the month. (Revisit our conversations with two temporarily banned local journalists here.) Consider what Unicorn Riot announced Thursday. The locally based nonprofit newsroom, whose heroic on-the-ground coverage of protests around the country is deserving of mainstream accolades, updated followers with the following:

The "apparently unannounced" technical downgrading happened about two weeks ago, according to UR, and they're exploring "possible workarounds to this degradation in Twitter's live media infrastructure." Thankfully, you can still livestream Unicorn Riot via Facebook, YouTube, and Twitch. We reached out to co-founder Niko Georgiades for comment, but didn't immediately hear back.

Gopher Goings-On: Grad Workers Win Union; CLA Backtracks Course Gutting

Back in February we spoke with Anya Auerbach, a third-year U of M PhD candidate, as she helped launch the UMN Graduate Labor Union. “No. 1 at the top of most people’s list is pay; we’re dramatically underpaid," she told us, speaking on behalf of around 4,000 fellow union hopefuls who work a wide swath of jobs at the U—T.A.s, running labs, research, museum curators. Today the results of their landslide union election went public: The union is official, with 97% of the 2,557 ballots cast voting for it. Similar labor campaigns have failed five times since 1974, so these Gopher grad workers are savoring the W. "The energy among grad workers this week was palpable. This victory is a testament to the workers who have taken the time to imagine what is possible and how much stronger we are together,” Yusra Murad, a current graduate worker, says via press release. “We’re so excited to advocate for our collective at the bargaining table."

Elsewhere on campus, the College of Liberal Arts will not be gutting its ethnic and gender studies departments. CLA council chairs sounded the alarm last week but, it turns out, the dramatic cuts were based on faulty math. "We discovered that a budget coding issue had miscalculated," CLA Dean John Coleman informed colleagues, as reported by Sahan Journal. "It’s a little embarrassing to have to write to you about that error, but given a choice I suppose I’d rather be embarrassed and have relatively positive news to share as in this instance." While the discovery of $940,000 surprise dollars is good, Coleman stressed that the college is still budget-crunched due to shrinking enrollment. We know where they could find $260,000...

Keep Your Doggos Home, Folks

Canine influenza has been raging through the Twin Cities this month. According to reports from the Animal Humane Society, about 200 dogs have gotten sick, and seven have had to be put down. It got so bad that all three locations—Golden Valley, Coon Rapids, Woodbury—have had to shut down and quarantine, re-opening mid-May at the earliest. It’s also believed that the flu is making its way through the forever-home population, though, much like COVID access to testing and recognizing symptoms can be difficult. So at this point in time, experts recommend a pandemic-style lockdown for dogs, encouraging owners to avoid dog parks, limit interactions with other dogs at dog-friendly pubs or while taking walks, and, if possible, keep them home from daycare. “Even a dog that appears to have recovered can continue to shed infectious virus for 30 days,” writes the Minnesota Board of Animal Health in its guidelines.  

Dog influenza is also keeping dogs from taking part in the AHS’s Walk for Animals for the first time in 52 years. Pretty much every other type of creature, big or small, is still encouraged to attend, however: “Past Walks have included rabbits, guinea pigs, hamsters, ferrets, goats, ponies, chickens, ducks, snakes, spiders, ants, a giant tortoise, and even a wallaby.” Sounds adorable!

KinhDo to Close This Weekend

Mere moments after we published our EXHAUSTIVE list of April's restaurant openings, closings, and coming-soon-ings earlier today, the Star Tribune hit us with a late addition: After 36 years, Uptown's KinhDo will close for good after service on Sunday. On the restaurant's GoFundMe page, which launched in February '22 to help with enduring Covid challenges and other financial hardships, son of the owners Jonathan Rowe says the closure comes after issues with KinhDo's landlord in addition to staffing challenges. "At this time, I am asking for donations to help with the financial burden that closing KinhDo will have on its employees," Rowe writes. "These employees are my extended family."

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