Illusory Truth Effect [...]

From the Wikipedia article: "The illusory truth effect (also known as the truth effect or the illusion-of-truth effect) is the tendency to believe information to be correct after repeated exposure." This is one explanation of how Facebook's "fake news" functions to change people's minds, not simply confirm their pre-existing biases....

 

The People Derek Black Knew [...]

Derek Black, rising white nationalist star, came around to realizing the error of his beliefs not through argumentation with the enemy, but through dinners with diverse friends. On the rare occasions when Derek directed conversation during those dinners, it was about the particulars of Arabic grammar, or marine aquatics, or the roots of Christianity in medieval times....

 

Techno-Pastoralism [...]

Brautigan's Machines of Loving Grace imagines a world made more pastoral, quiet, and contemplative by computers: The text was printed over an image of electric schematics and it set out a utopian vision of a techno-pastoralism, where new digital machines could return us to a prelapsarian state, at one with nature in an electric Eden. The poem, in part: ") I like to t...

 

Prime Vietnam Directive [...]

The Prime Directive of Star Trek (or at least the embrace of it) may have evolved out of U.S. ambivalence about Vietnam. It was part of Rodenberry's vision of "progressive humanity". > The Prime Directive of "Star Trek: TOS" is primarily a way to process America's 1960s misadventure in Vietnam. Would that more generals and chickenhawks dreamed dreams that taught th...

 

Sci-fi For/Against Vietnam [...]

A breakdown of science fiction writers for and against the Vietnam War from June 1968 Galaxy Magazine: Commentary on the differences: > Looking backward at the rival camps, we may be puzzled by Pohl's inability to distinguish between either their ideologies or their conflicting roles in modern SF. For the pro-war list reads like a roll call of champions of super-s...

 

Identity Headlines [...]

Most retweeters and Facebook reposters aren't informing, or even arguing. They are using headlines the way one might use a bumper sticker: to express who there are and bond with others. From a user’s point of view, every share, like or comment is both an act of speech and an accretive piece of a public identity. Maybe some people want to be identified among their ne...

 

The Garden and the Stream [...]

From a 2015 keynote by Mike Caulfield. The Garden: The Garden is an old metaphor associated with hypertext. Those familiar with the history will recognize this. The Garden of Forking Paths from the mid-20th century. The concept of the Wiki Gardener from the 1990s. Mark Bernstein’s 1998 essay Hypertext Gardens. The Garden is the web as topology. The web as space. It...

 

The Full Story Test [...]

Related to the Bechdel Test, the Full Story Test asks three questions of news media content: 1. Are our content priorities committing us to be more inclusive and to tell stories that aren’t being told? 2. Are we tracking the diversity of staff, leadership and our board? How do we measure up? 3. Do we regularly measure the diversity of bylines and sources? Do we have...

 

The Bechdel Test [...]

The Bechdel Test asks whether a work of fiction, typically but not necessarily a film, features at least two women who talk to each other about something other than a man. The Bechdel Test is named after cartoonist Alison Bechdel. The test first appeared in her comic Dykes to Watch Out For. Movies that pass the Bechdel Test....

 

Addiction as Metaphor [...]

There was a dust-up last week following a New York Post story which described digital technologies as "digital heroin." The Verge responded with its own article, "Why calling screentime 'digital heroin' is digital garbage." The debates whether about technologies or porn or food all revolve around "what counts" as addiction. From The Verge article: Kardaras’ loose...