ecosystem explorer displaying blank / null uowid

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ecosystem explorer displaying blank / null uowid

We have no events in the esm repository where the uowid is blank or null.  But, the 'Jobs' portlet displays a lot of rows with blank / null uowid, uowTS.  The "Status" column has a value of "NEW" in every case where the uowid is missing.  What is happening and how can I prevent this behaviour?  I tried adding a filter of UOWID <> '' or UOWID > 'a'.  These are return no data even though both should return a lot of data.  I was able to make the rows go away by using a filter '!NEW'. 

What creates the status of "NEW"?