What you missed in Columbus for Oct. 4

Last call to register for the Nov. 2 general election, Urban Meyer causes a social media stir and more you might have missed from the weekend

Andy Downing
Columbus Alive
Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer on the sidelines during an NFL football game against the Cincinnati Bengals, Thursday, Sept. 30, 2021, in Cincinnati. (AP Photo/Zach Bolinger)

Eligible Ohio residents have until the end of the day to register to vote in the Nov. 2 general election, with early voting set to begin on Tuesday, Oct. 5. New registrations can be submitted online here or in person at the board of elections office, 1700 Morse Road on the North Side. Aaron Sellers, spokesman for the Franklin County Board of Elections, told the Dispatch that the latter will be open until 9 p.m. to accommodate last-minute registrations.

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Jacksonville Jaguars head coach Urban Meyer apparently returned to Columbus over the weekend, where the former Ohio State coach spent some time at his Short North steakhouse, um, nursing his grief the day after a Thursday night loss that dropped his team to 0-4.

Late Saturday afternoon, the Twitter account @uh_oh_urban, which has since been deleted, shared a video of the coach on the receiving end of a vigorous chair dance from a woman who was most definitely not his wife. The clip quickly went viral online, likely in part because Meyer’s past actions (mismanaging the alleged domestic abuse allegations against former OSU assistant coach Zach Smith; hiring Chris Doyle, the former Iowa strength and conditioning coach accused by Black players of being racist) continually cut against the Leader of Men brand the media has helped to construct around him, which led to Meyer teaching a “character and leadership” course at Ohio State following his run as coach. Long live irony.

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On Sunday, Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen appeared on “60 Minutes” for an interview during which she detailed some of the ways Facebook prioritized profits over safety, including: embracing an algorithm that pushes content likely to make users angry because it increases engagement; dissolving its Civil Integrity unit prior to the Jan. 6 insurrection, which was spurred in part by participants who organized on the platform; and detecting just three to five percent of the hate that takes place on the platform, according to an internal study.

“Facebook has realized that if they change the algorithm to be safer, people will spend less time on the site, they’ll click on less ads, they’ll make less money,” said Haugen, who worked on the since-dissolved Civil Integrity unit, which was aimed at combating political misinformation on the platform.

NPR has a rundown of the interview highlights here.

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The Columbus Crew’s thin playoff hopes took another shot on Sunday when the team fell 3-0 to the Philadelphia Union in a flat performance.

“At this point of the year — it's definitely a lack of focus, lack of passion,” center back Josh Williams said. “It's just so inexcusable to me. I'm embarrassed by that performance, what just happened out there, from top to bottom. I'm at a loss for words to describe how the hell we come out and we do that.”

The loss leaves the Crew six points out of the playoff picture with six games remaining. To qualify, the team would likely need to win at least five of those games, according to the Dispatch.

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Newark pumpkin carver Titus Arensberg advanced to the second round of Food Network’s “Outrageous Pumpkins.” The second round will be broadcast at 10 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 10, or just in time for the start of Christmas beer season.