January 08, 2021

n-gate.com. we can't both be right.

webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the first week of January, 2021.

My Experience at Apple
January 01, 2021 (comments) (archive since the coward deleted it)
An Internet posts the heartwarming story of having narrowly escaped a career working for Apple. Hackernews relates every bad workplace experience they've ever had. Later, Hackernews decides to attack the author of the original article, including deciding that the author must be insane. Hackernews' proof? Questionable typopgraphy.

How to overcome Phone Addiction
January 02, 2021 (comments)
Hackernews is now just voting up spam blogs, just so they can talk about their favorite smartphone software. Most of it consists of programs designed to inhibit the functionality of the device you bought. One Hackernews is mad that the Marines exist, which seems like a reasonable position. This seemed to be a reasonable position until it became evident that Hackernews had the United States Marines confused with murderous robots, when the proper reason to be mad that the Marines exist is that the Army already has a perfectly serviceable infantry.

Uber discovered they’d been defrauded out of 2/3 of their ad spend
January 03, 2021 (comments)
The headline is unclear: the numbers in question involve Uber's $150MM online ad budget. In addition, Uber was in fact defrauded out of 100% of their online advertising budget, because every dollar you spend on online advertising may as well have been flushed down the toilet. Since Hackernews' entire life revolves around using Uber to commute to their adtech day job, then using Uber to get to their kickball league with their adtech startup co-conspirators, then using Uber to get back to their loft, this story captivates Hackernews wholly. Half the comments are from Hackernews who are aware that online advertising is worthless and the other half are from other Hackernews insisting the first half is mistaken.

A group of Google workers have announced plans to unionize
January 04, 2021 (comments)
A fraction of a percent of Google's employees build a labor union out of cardboard boxes and packing tape. Google managers begin carefully documenting all of the subpar work output and general behavior problems these employees will have demonstrated by the time someone gets around to firing them. Hackernews has some kind of emotional meltdown over the idea that anyone who knows how to type javascript into a computer would refuse to pretend they are uniquely irreplaceable golden children. Along the way, we are able to determine that Hackernews is not in fact positive what a labor union is, but is happy to tell us what they think other people assume labor unions are. No technology is discussed.

GitHub is fully available in Iran
January 05, 2021 (comments)
Microsoft expands the pool of lower-income nations they can exploit. A Microsoft arrives in the Hackernews comments to handle bug requests personally, both because there isn't anything better to do with Microsoft's time and because Hackernews comprises the majority of the population of people dumb enough to pay for Github Pro accounts. Hackernews relates every story they have ever heard involving Iran.

WhatsApp gives users an ultimatum: Share data with Facebook or stop using app
January 06, 2021 (comments)
Facebook continues the war on its own users. Hackernews is absolutely positive this is the most interesting and important thing to happen on January 6, 2021. There is nothing else that even comes close to being as important as this to talk about on January 6, 2021. Nothing else is even remotely this crucial -- it received 110% the votes of the next-highest-ranked story. A change in the terms of service of a fucking chat program is definitely, for sure, the most important event of January 6, 2021. What could possibly be as important as Facebook software policies? Nothing! Not on January 6, 2021, that's for damn sure!

No meetings, no deadlines, no full-time employees
January 07, 2021 (comments)
Gumroad (business model: "Uber for Etsy") explains why it's such a pain in the ass to interact with Gumroad in any meaningful way. Hackernews realizes this country doesn't provide health care and flips the fuck out. Then Hackernews realizes the author basically scammed some venture capitalists and gullible staff into building out a business that put the author firmly into the leisure class, and fights break out over whether this is evil, genius, evil genius, or just sort of a dick move.

by http://n-gate.com/hackernews/2021/01/07/0/

January 06, 2021

Data Knightmare (Italian podcast)

DK 5x17 - Pisano, fai qualcosa di digitale!

Non bastava Immuni, adesso arriva pure il servizio civile digitale. Avanti verso il futuro, a forza di buffonate!

by Walter Vannini

January 04, 2021

Tomb, the Crypto Undertaker 2.9

… – Changes: This release fixes all bugs introduced by the unfortunate 2.8 release series in 2020 as well introduces support for BTRFS formatted Tombs. The fixes are for password insertion to work on all desktops, as well the fix to a regression when using old Zsh versions. The new feature is activated by the '-

by Jaromil

January 03, 2021

Zero Days

La Posta del Prof #1: L'importanza della chiarezza

Essere chiari è sicuramente uno degli elementi più importanti quando si spiega, si parla o si scrive.

In questo primo episodio de "La posta del Prof." rispondo a una domanda su questi temi.

by Giovanni Ziccardi

January 01, 2021

n-gate.com. we can't both be right.

webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the last week of December, 2020.

Hotwire: HTML over the Wire
December 22, 2020 (comments)
After decades of study, some webshits discover a method of sending HTML to a web browser and having the browser render it. Hackernews scrambles to the comment section to explain to us that this is not just the way shit was supposed to work in the first place: it is a special kind of innovation involving a very complex calculus involving dozens of factors Hackernews previously used to justify doing stupid shit with javascript.

Tips for a Better Life
December 23, 2020 (comments)
Some asshole with a Wordpress account has arrived to enlighten us via numbered list. Hackernews loves the bumper-sticker model of personal development, and pastes quotes from the Wordpress site for each other to read. No technology is discussed.

Ruby 3.0
December 24, 2020 (comments)
A programming language gets slightly faster to run and remains moderately unreadable. Hackernews gets paid to type in this language, so they obviously care about the release of a new version, but there is nothing interesting in the release, so they wax poetic about the meaning and impact this Perl knockoff has had on their lives.

Dasung just released a 25 inch eInk monitor
December 25, 2020 (comments)
Anyone finally makes a decent computer monitor. Contrary to the Reddit headline, nothing is "released"; we are instead treated to a propaganda film featuring a product we may not have. Hackernews, as usual, has to explain how e-ink works, suss out what differentiates it from other display mechanisms, and reprosecute the concept of patent law.

California Public Utilities Commission fired director who exposed missing $200M
December 26, 2020 (comments)
The State of California, continuing its war against its own users, uncovers a traitor in its ranks. Hackernews complains about punctuation marks in email messages and then declares that nothing will ever improve until Republicans control the Californian government. The rest of the comments are either other Hackernews asking how that would be any different or spitballing legislative changes that might enable this.

Just Wanted to Say Thanks
December 27, 2020 (comments)
Some computer nerds fondle each other in public. Hackernews thinks it's about time people expressed thankfulness for the endless wave of overcomplicated shit they write to ease the deployment and use of the endless wave of shit they wrote.

Why Is There a Bucatini Shortage in America?
December 28, 2020 (comments)
An asshole takes four thousand words to say "because hipster pasta is a pain to make and one of the suppliers got in trouble for not meeting federal food standards." Hackernews regards this completely uninteresting chain of events to be evidence of the abject and ultimate failure of the government of the United States of America. To finish the evening, Hackernews gets mad that different countries have different safety standards, and decides that "protectionism" is to blame.

Do You Love Me? [video]
December 29, 2020 (comments)
Boston Dynamics posts more home videos of their pets. Hackernews is sad they can't afford similar pets.

Four-day week means 'I don't waste holidays on chores'
December 30, 2020 (comments)
An actual professional news organization reports that people who don't work as much have time to do more things outside of work. Hackernews tries to decide how to find the right balance between getting paid and being happy. As usual, some assholes who can't tell the difference show up to complain about people who can.

Bitcoin is a disaster
December 31, 2020 (comments)
An Internet summarizes the obvious. Several Hackernews consider Dunning-Krugerrand to be an essential technology. Coincidentally, all of the Hackernews who feel that way are from failed states. The rest of the positive opinions come from Hackernews who were trying to buy garbage from other countries without actually owning any of that country's currency, a problem whose solution is clearly worth devoting the energy resources of a small European nation.

Better luck next year.

by http://n-gate.com/hackernews/2020/12/31/0/

Zero Days

Le mie dieci linee di ricerca per il 2021 + Buon Anno!

In questo primo podcast del 2021 illustro quali saranno le mie linee di ricerca in Università di Milano per l'anno entrante.

Sono gli argomenti che maggiormente esploreremo con i nostri studenti, sia pre sia post laurea, e che saranno oggetto di articoli, convegni e corsi sia miei, sia delle mie ricercatrici e ricercatori.

by Giovanni Ziccardi

December 31, 2020

Zero Days

Il discorso (tecnologico) di fine anno: addio al 2020, bilancio, e ultimi accorgimenti di sicurezza!

In questo ultimo podcast del 2020 faccio il punto su un anno assai difficile anche dal punto di vista tecnologico. 

Da domani, contenuti nuovi e, soprattutto, un anno nuovo!!

by Giovanni Ziccardi

December 30, 2020

Vlax

En riesgo la memoria sonora de México. La reducción del 80% en el p...

En riesgo la memoria sonora de México. La reducción del 80% en el presupuesto de la Fonoteca Nacional significa el despido de un centenar de trabajadores y poner en peligro miles de archivos invaluables.

#FonotecaNacional
https://bit.ly/3aRkJC9

En riesgo la memoria sonora de México. La reducción del 80% en el presupuesto de la Fonoteca Nacional significa el despido de un centenar de trabajadores y poner en peligro miles de archivos invaluables.#FonotecaNacionalbit.ly/3aRkJC9
Imagen/Foto


https://nitter.13ad.de/Desinformemonos/status/1344350038516928513#m

by Desinformemonos

December 28, 2020

Maemo Leste video channel

December 23, 2020

Vlax

Data Knightmare (Italian podcast)

DK 5x16 - A lezione da PornHUB

Alla fine, la prima piattaforma a prendersi la responsabilità dei contenuti postati è stata PornHUB. Dimostrando che i vari Zuckerberg, Dorsey e compagnia sono dei cialtroni buoni solo a chiagnere e fottere.

by Walter Vannini

December 22, 2020

n-gate.com. we can't both be right.

webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the third week of December, 2020.

Facebook to move UK users to California terms, avoiding EU privacy rules
December 15, 2020 (comments)
Facebook continues the war on its own users. Brexit will enable Facebook to mine even more personal information about the people who got conned into thinking Brexit was a good idea. Hackernews tries to engineer Facebook's terms of service from first principles, then whines about how GDPR has ruined their curated doomscrolling experience. Later, Hackernews incorrects each other about UK law, which is much simpler than Facebook's terms of service.

Firefox Was Always Enough
December 16, 2020 (comments)
One of the Mozilla employees who got thrown overboard in the last round of executive panic ponders exactly what the hell Mozilla is trying to accomplish. Nobody appears to know. Hackernews loves trying to figure out what various companies are doing, but can't decide whether "making new programming languages" ought to be a core business activity for a web browser company. Someone brings up FirefoxOS, which starts a huge argument about whether mobile operating systems are completely impossible to profit from. Later, the Fraternal Order of the Yeeted Mozillains takes turns talking about how it was a great place to work back when anyone had any idea what the goal was. The Order agrees that things pretty clearly started going downhill at some point, but when exactly that happened appears to be somewhere between "immediately" and "last spring."

No Cookie for You
December 17, 2020 (comments)
Github brags that it only stores "essential cookies" such as _device_id and opaque session identification shit. HTML Local Storage is used but not mentioned. While they're at it, they brag about their lack of third-party client-side analytics, which is of course nearly meaningless since the first party is Microsoft. Even Hackernews sees through this bullshit, although the three thousand votes compared to the six hundred comments would indicate they do not see particularly clearly through this bullshit. Hackernews bickers about what constitutes user tracking, then eventually stumbles on the list of organizations Github still sends your data to: Clearbit, DiscoverOrg, Eloqua, Google Analytics, LinkedIn, and Magic Robot.

Jetbrains founders turn billionaires without VC help
December 18, 2020 (comments)
The idea that people can sell computer software without incurring multimillion-dollar debt to venture capitalists is apparently so rare as to make headlines. Since the computer programs in question are basically overgrown text editors, Hackernews melts down arguing over whether the products are absolutely essential to the act of writing software or the worst thing anyone has ever tried to run on a computer. This naturally leads to hours of shouting about which programming languages are the worst. Later on, an apostate Hackernews questions the motives of venture capitalists, and the rest of Hackernews sallies forth to explain that only a complete doomed idiot would ever do such a thing.

All problems stem from man's inability to sit quietly in a room alone (2014)
December 19, 2020 (comments)
"Hacker" "News" annotates a Blase Pascal quote as being from the year 2014 because it was invoked in a Grauniad article somewhat hypocritically calling for people to shut up and think about things. Hackernews crawls over one another to make sure their web forum hears how thoughtful and mindful they are, like, all the time you guys, it's crazy. The resulting explosion of didactic navel-gazing results in instructions on the nature of Islam, modern civilization's influence on film editing practice, health tips accompanied by programming analogies, and more Prius bumper stickers than you can shake a stick at. As usual with such threads, the racket doesn't die down until Hackernews crawls so far into their own asses that they can't see the leaderboard any more. No technology is discussed, except metaphorically, which is described as "alliteration."

The web is 30 years old today
December 20, 2020 (comments)
CERN would like to remind us that the Manhattan project is not the only massive research effort which led to regions of the planet being rendered entirely inhospitable to human life. The resulting comment thread serves as this week's Hackernews Nostalgia Repository.

Russian opposition leader Navalny dupes spy into revealing how he was poisoned
December 21, 2020 (comments)
A poisoned Russian politician discovers more bad news, as it turns out the poisoners are morons. Hackernews finds out the reporters of the story had access to loads of private information about Russians, and stages a competition to see who is the most worldly and unsurprised, except for the Hackernews who decides to talk about comic books instead. Later, Hackernews tries to figure out whether all good journalists are secret CIA plants (or only most of them), why the Russian government went to the extreme lengths of secretly poisoning someone's pants instead of just using bullets, and why there are so many Russian Hackernews suddenly expressing strident opinions about western journalism.

by http://n-gate.com/hackernews/2020/12/21/0/

December 19, 2020

Dyne.org video channel

Data Knightmare (Italian podcast)

DK 5x15 - Io? No.

Non bastava la débacle di Immuni. Ora abbiamo pure IO. E Arcuri, che per i suoi successi col CoVid adesso vuole gestire la somministrazione del vaccino con ...un'app. Cosa potrebbe andare storto?

by Walter Vannini

December 18, 2020

Dyne.org video channel

December 17, 2020

Bordermonitoring.EU

Dyne.org video channel

December 15, 2020

Institute of Network Cultures

OUT NOW: TOD#39 Lives of Data edited by Sandeep Mertia

Lives of Data maps the historical and emergent dynamics of big data, computing, and society in India. Data infrastructures are now more global than ever before. In much of the world, new sociotechnical possibilities of big data and artificial intelligence are unfolding under the long shadows cast by infra/structural inequalities, colonialism, modernization, and national sovereignty. This book offers critical vantage points for looking at big data and its shadows, as they play out in uneven encounters of machinic and cultural relationalities of data in India’s socio-politically disparate and diverse contexts.

Lives of Data emerged from research projects and workshops at the Sarai programme, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies. It brings together fifteen interdisciplinary scholars and practitioners to set up a collaborative research agenda on computational cultures. The essays offer wide-ranging analyses of media and techno-scientific trajectories of data analytics, disruptive formations of digital economy, and the grounded practices of data-driven governance in India. Encompassing history, anthropology, science and technology studies (STS), media studies, civic technology, data science, digital humanities, and journalism, the essays open up possibilities for a truly situated global and sociotechnically specific understanding of the many lives of data.

Lives of Data is edited by Sandeep Mertia. He is a PhD candidate at the Department of Media, Culture, and Communication and Urban Doctoral Fellow at New York University and he is an ICT engineer by training, and former Research Associate at The Sarai Programme, Centre for the Study of Developing Societies, Delhi.

‘This remarkable collection is the first major portrait and assessment of the social and technical relationalities that constitute the ecology of big data in India today. Equally remarkably, the authors represent the first generation of scholars of digital media who speak through an Indian lens while being totally conversant with the cutting edge of global scholarship on big data.’ — Arjun Appadurai, Goddard Professor of Media, Culture, and Communication, New York University

‘Wide-ranging and incisive, Lives of Data is essential reading for those who wish to understand the seductions and contingencies of being or becoming data-driven.’ — Lisa Gitelman, author, Paper Knowledge and editor, ‘Raw Data’ Is an Oxymoron

Get the book here:

   

 

by Chloë Arkenbout

The Society for Social Studies of Science

Upgraded to Obsolescence: Age Intervention in the Era of Biohacking

Popularized by DIY scientists and quantified-selfers, the language of “biohacking” has become increasingly prevalent in anti-aging discourse. Presented with speculative futures of superhuman health and longevity, consumers and patients are invited to “hack” the aging process, reducing age to one of the many programs, or rather “bugs” that can be re-written, removed, and rendered obsolete. Drawing on recent examples from popular media and anti-aging promotional materials, I explore how the language of biohacking signals an orientation to the body that denies the acceptability of a body that is anything but optimal. In the endless strive towards the latest and greatest, the language of biohacking renders the old body obsolete, standing as nothing more than a relic of an outdated operating system.

by Kirsten L. Ellison (kellison@trentu.ca)

Zero Waste––Zero Justice?

Plastic is slowly covering the earth, accumulating in oceans, soil, air, and human and non-human bodies. In the face of this catastrophe, zero waste activists call upon us for action, detailing, how we, too, can change our lifestyle to eliminate plastic waste and save the planet. Yet, who it is that is called upon, who speaks, and whose voices and lived realities might be ignored? In this contribution, we explore the social politics of the zero waste movement. This leads us to ponder: might popular environmental movements that relegate social justice to the back seat ultimately do more harm than good?

by Sarah Maria Schönbauer (sarah.schoenbauer@tum.de)

Pandemic Sociology

In 1990, the sociologist Phil Strong wrote about “epidemic psychology” as part of his research on the recent history of AIDS. Strong described vividly how epidemics of fear, of explanation and moralization, and of (proposed) action accompanied the epidemic of the AIDS virus per se. In this essay, I draw on these formulations to think through the current COVID-19 crisis, illustrating too a pandemic of inequality. In so doing, I provide a sketch of a pandemic sociology.

by Martyn Pickersgill (martyn.pickersgill@ed.ac.uk)

Lessons from Theranos: Changing Narratives of Individual Ethics in Science and Engineering

The meteoric ascent and equally dramatic fall of Theranos has been covered prolifically in the media. Presented as an ambitious inventor gone rogue, the discursive construction of the Theranos scandal in popular media and in the biomedical community reifies tired narratives of the role of ethics in science and engineering fields more generally: narratives that emphasizes individual integrity and common sense rather than the structures and norms that leave scientists and engineers vulnerable to ethical quandaries. In this short critical engagement, I argue that the ways Theranos has been captured obscures important conversations about ethics in bioscience and biotechnology, both in the private sector and in university spaces. I call for STS scholars to engage with scientists and engineers to imagine ways to structurally embed ethics and justice in future technoscientific endeavors.

by Melanie Jeske (mel.jeske@ucsf.edu)

Sticks, Stones, and the Secular Bones of Indian Democracy

While being inspired by the compelling social protests against the Citizenship Amendment Act and National Register of Citizens in India, the authors of this critical engagement argue that now, more than ever, is time to reflect on the nature of secularism that is being invoked by nonviolent protesters. What can a focus on lathi-wielding and stone-throwing, all low technologies of governance, tell us about the practices and challenges of liberal democracy in India? This piece excavates a brief history of the lathi and stone-pelting to show what kinds of "illiberal" protests are deemed aesthetically pleasing and palatable to elites in India and abroad, which ones are not, and the dangers of this kind of exclusion with respect to new forms of Islamophobia.

by Sreela Sarkar (ssarkar@scu.edu)

Low-Carbon Research: Building a Greener and More Inclusive Academy

This essay examines how the fossil fuel energy regimes that support contemporary academic norms in turn shape and constrain knowledge production. High-carbon research methods and exchanges, particularly those that depend on aviation, produce distinct exclusions and incentives that could be reformed in the transition to a low-carbon academy. Drawing on feminist STS, alternative modes of collective research creation and collaboration are outlined, along with an assessment of their potential challenges and gains. This commentary concludes with several recommendations for incremental and institutional changes, along with a call for scholars of social and technical systems to uniquely contribute to this transition.

by Anne Pasek (apasek@ualberta.ca)

The Methodologists: a Unique Category of Scientific Actors

This essay introduces a new analytical category of scientific actors: the methodologists. These actors are distinguished by their tendency to continue to probing scientific objects that their peers consider to be settled. The methodologists are a useful category of actors for science and technology studies (STS) scholars to follow because they reveal contingencies and uncertainties in taken-for-granted science. Identifying methodologists is useful for STS analysts seeking a way into science in moments when it is no longer “in the making” or there is little active controversy. Studying methodologists is also useful for scholars seeking to understand the genesis of scientific controversies, particularly controversies about long-established methods, facts, or premises.

by Nicole C. Nelson (nicole.nelson@wisc.edu)

The Conjoined Spectacles of the “Smart Super Bowl”

This essay examines the Super Bowl and the smart city as conjoined spectacles. A focused case study on Super Bowl LIII and its staging in Atlanta, Georgia in 2019 allows us to investigate how the use of cutting-edge smart technologies, including cameras, sensors, artificial intelligence, image recognition, and data collection techniques to secure Mercedes Benz stadium naturalizes a broader anticipatory logic of state and corporate intervention, often evoked in the name of public safety and terrorism-prevention. Together the spectacles of sport and smart technologies gloss over systemic inequality and legitimize security infrastructures as well as related ideas that social problems such as a lack of affordable housing, police brutality, and environmental degradation are best addressed through technological solutions. Foregrounding the conjoined spectacles of the smart city and Super Bowl problematizes seemingly necessary security processes and social relations among people, events, technologies, and cities, inviting further research and discussions necessary for strengthening critical interventions and theorizing in these areas. 

by Mary G. McDonald (mary.mcdonald@hsoc.gatech.edu)

Unintended by Design: On the Political Uses of “Unintended Consequences”

This paper revisits the term “unintended consequences,” drawing upon an illustrative vignette to show how it is used to dismiss vital ethical and political concerns. Tracing the term to its original introduction by Robert Merton and building on feminist technoscience analyses, we uncover and rethink its widespread usage in popular and scholarly discourses and practices of technology design.

by Anne Pollock (anne.pollock@kcl.ac.uk)

Regimes of Patienthood: Developing an Intersectional Concept to Theorize Illness Experiences

In this paper, we develop the concept regimes of patienthood. Regimes of patienthood highlights the micro and macro dimensions of illness, paying close attention to how the interplay between the two creates expectations and points of intervention for people when they are ill. Such expectations may vary across time, place, and social position (e.g., age, class, ethnicity, gender, race, sexuality). Regimes of patienthood are always regimes of power and resistance, where the forms of resistance may vary based on individuals’ intersectional positions. We draw on two cases—a study of 45 mostly white, middle class adults living with autoimmune illnesses and a study of 20 Black women living with advanced cancer—to examine one dimension of regimes of patienthood—control. Although a number of social positions, such as age and race, co-produce illness experiences, we focus on three—class, insurance status, and gender—that are particularly salient in our data in relation to control. Such a move illustrates the theoretical power of regimes of patienthood for science and technology studies (STS).

by Melanie Jeske (Mel.jeske@ucsf.edu)

December 14, 2020

Vlax

Anestesia del ensueño : #video casero #remix de #cine del #dominiop...

Anestesia del ensueño : #video casero #remix de #cine del #dominiopublico

  • Sinopsis (aproximación) : Un espectro conocido visita a su querida compañera, pero una multitud le recuerda que el sentido de la vida incluye algunos desvaríos. > Tiempo : 02 : 28 min > edición #audiovisual con #softwarelibre : Kdenlive,Openshot, Audacity, en #Devuan

https://archive.org/details/anestesia-fantasy

kdlv

#copyright #audiovisual

by vlax 0°0

December 13, 2020

Vlax

#Destacadas #México

#Destacadas #México

Escucha el álbum De aquí y de allá: homenaje a la Caravana de Madres Centroamericanas que buscan a sus hijos desaparecidos en tránsito por México

https://bit.ly/33Xk1iG

#Destacadas #México Escucha el álbum De aquí y de allá: homenaje a la Caravana de Madres Centroamericanas que buscan a sus hijos desaparecidos en tránsito por México bit.ly/33Xk1iG


https://nitter.13ad.de/Desinformemonos/status/1338212370582265858#m

by Desinformemonos

December 12, 2020

Maemo Leste video channel

Institute of Network Cultures

Impakt Festival Presents Disrupt and Reflect

https://disrupt.impakt.nl/#OPENING_SCREEN

“Dopamine is the metaphor of our age,” says Geert Lovink in ‘Sad by Design’ (2019). We seek instant gratification. Online shopping fulfills our wildest and most superficial desires in a few clicks. Not only by buying (useless) stuff, but also in finding attention, likes, and, when we are completely overstimulated, in finding peace with mindfulness, yoga, or completely ‘off the Wi-Fi grid’ in nature. Disrupt and Reflect examines the economies behind the internet where our short-term needs are constantly being triggered and our impulse control is constantly being tested.

Disrupt and Reflect is a web project that is alternately extremely over-stimulating and very calming. It is a collection of creative and critical reflections in which, at different tempos, the viewer becomes part of the mechanisms of acceleration and stillness as they are currently occurring in our digital society. The online project consists of talks and artist presentations, accompanied by video interviews with the participants. Disrupt & Reflect is a collaborative project with the research track Post-Digital Cultures at Fontys University of Applied Sciences.

When everyone is always connected, disconnection and quietness is a scarcity. Less distraction, less incentives, more human attention. Of course, ‘less of more’ also makes money: technologies that regulate your internet use, Wi-Fi-free cafes, technology-free retreats and spas; the web is full of solutions for those suffering an information overload. The burnout industry is booming. Click – click – click – I just bought another self-help guide that promises a better, more efficient version of me. Digital detox has become a mainstream sales strategy where human contact is considered a luxury item. And due to COVID-19 we have all become screenagers, we have all experienced moments of digital fatigue, and a lack of real human touch and dopamine shots. Have a monetized hug by watching ‘~Cozy~ Hugs & Kisses ASMR ❤’ (633.998 views) on YouTube.

For this project we commissioned artists and theorists to critically and creatively reflect on how these apparently opposite modes of ‘overdrive’ and ‘nothingness’ behind the internet and digital technologies work. Their contributions are accompanied with random roulette interviews. How can we create a more nuanced understanding of the overwhelming influence of digital technology and the human capacity to deal with it in a healthy way? How can we come up with smart solutions that do not continuously take our self-discipline to the test? How can we escape the attention economy?

With contributions by: Anxious to Make (Emily & Liat) https://anxioustomake.ga/, Katriona Beales katrionabeales.com/, Roos Groothuizen roos.gr/, Dasha Ilina https://dashailina.com/, Annika Kappner http://www.annikakappner.com/, Dr. Gerald Moore, Pinar Yoldas https://www.pinaryoldas.info/

Webdesign: TeYosh (Sofija & Teodora) https://www.teyosh.com/

Curated by Nadine Roestenburg

by Geert Lovink

December 11, 2020

Dyne.org video channel

Data Knightmare (Italian podcast)

DK 5x14 - Greta sì, Eva no?

Per qualche motivo, se un'adolescente trova astuto perdere un giorno di scuola la settimana per protestare contro il cambiamento climatico è un eroe dell'umanità, mentre se vuole seguire le lezioni davanti alla scuola per protestare contro la DAD, è una minaccia per la privacy.

by Walter Vannini

December 10, 2020

Dyne.org video channel

December 09, 2020

Data Knightmare (Italian podcast)

DK 5x13 - Salvare i succhiadati? Anche no.

Tutti a stracciarsi le vesti per Schrems II. Ma il solo problema è salvare il business delle big tech.

by Walter Vannini

December 08, 2020

Institute of Network Cultures

The Conspiracy Theorist as Influencer

Here’s a conversation starter: “What do you do?” “I research conspiracy theories.” This response is usually met with varied forms of excitement and curiosity: “Oh, sick, I love conspiracy theories!”, “Like what, 9/11? You know, I think it was an inside job”, “You know, I think this corona stuff is made up by [insert global superpower/anti-Semitic trope/alien conspiracy] to control us!!!1”.

Let’s get straight, I understand that “good”, or at least legitimized, knowledge is not a neutral notion. I also understand that conspiracy theories are, in the end, alternative ways of processing information in an increasingly networked age, “a way of making links in the combined sense of discovering as well as creating”[1] 

It might be comforting to think that the shadowy figures that populate the more unpleasant corners of the internet, as well as your aunt on Facebook, are cretins who genuinely believe the narratives they spout to their audience of galaxy brains. It helps recalibrate our own position as sane, thinking, intelligent citizens and identifies a scapegoat in a nebulous uneducated, media-illiterate class that seemingly dispenses with science and logic. 

What some of these conspiracists understand better than most is that this game is not one of winning people’s minds, but their hearts. All clichés aside, appealing to users’ logic with sound arguments and facts simply doesn’t do the trick anymore. You have to be able to generate clicks.

Why Are Conspiracy Theorists So Obsessed with Collagen?

Much like all entrepreneurs, conspiracy theorists need an actual product to sell, something that can finance their efforts to propagate arcane stories about “evil lizard people” and the like. And while they do traffic in conspiracies, they often must find other things to capitalize, especially in a precarious platform landscape, where demonetization and deplatforming are lurking around the corner. 

RedPill Living: QAnon truther Dustin Nemos’ eshop.

 

From Dauntless Dialogue on YouTube.

Rebecca Lewis has previously pointed out that political content creators use tactics linked to lifestyle influencers, and build their brand identity, connect with their audience, and market their (political) ideas in similar ways[2]. It’s not merely the shadowy Algorithm, which radicalizes the masses, but the networked potential and influence dynamics of the platform itself, as well as the ability it affords to capitalize on extant demand. 

It isn’t especially surprising that a number of lifestyle and wellness influencers have also realized this and begun repackaging and seamlessly integrating QAnon and pro-Trump hashtags into their saccharine Insta-aesthetics. The alternative wellness industry (think essential oils and healing crystals), already suspicious of pharmaceutical companies and mainstream talking points around health and dieting, serves as an ideal mouthpiece for such content.

 

The “Live Laugh Love” aesthetics of QAnon.

 

Who said makeup tutorials and QAnon propaganda didn’t go together?

It makes sense that conspiracy theories become more insidious when they linger behind more “wholesome” aesthetics or commendable causes, like wellness and spirituality. Take Maryam Henein, for instance: the director of an award-winning documentary Vanishing of the Bees, about bee preservation, is also a prolific COVID-19 conspiracy peddler.

This is also the case when it comes to the supposed anti-establishment cadence of conspiracism. In the Netherlands, a plethora of influencers and celebrities have parroted the talking points of conspiracy group Viruswaarheid, calling on people to: “get the government back under control”. Viruswaarheid has also received support from the right-wing FvD’s embattled leader Thierry Baudet. 

Critiquing Critique

This is the caveat of basing one’s politics around resisting a loosely defined status quo. Georgio Agamben’s op-eds from earlier this year excoriating the state of exception imposed by governments and the belief that COVID-19 was no more serious a threat than the common flu curiously mirror the theories emerging from more reactionary corners of the web. Indeed, refusal to comply with the imposed measures is often framed in terms of resisting authority. 

Back in 2004, Bruno Latour [Author disclaimer: As a grad student in an STS-heavy media studies program, I am legally obliged to quote Latour] wrote that the spirit of critical thinking and healthy doubt has been deformed by conspiracists[3]. Inhabiting an increasingly complex networked landscape, and grappling with the lessening importance of our decisions, also means that we are primed to look for connections and eager to make sense of things[4]. Conspiracy theorists might be the most eager of all.

I do consider myself a person with decent critical thinking abilities, but I also find myself torn between the imperative to question constructs like objectivity [Author disclaimer: As a grad student in the humanities, I am also legally obliged to reject grand narratives] and my contempt for simplistic explanations for complex, systemic issues. Conspiracy theories, for all their convolutedness, are the latter, as they generally are mutations of preexisting fears, anxieties, and moral panics, things which easily lend themselves to appropriation by conspiracy theorists. As Marc Tuters and Peter Knight explain in The Conversation, “[c]onspiracy theorists usually have a complete worldview, through which they interpret new information and events, to fit their existing theory”. 

Despite what Russell Muirhead and Nancy L. Rosenblum recently diagnosed as “conspiracy without the theory”, conspiracy supporters, including corona-deniers, often instrumentalize scientism just as often as their opponents do, albeit in different ways, likely because they are aware of its authoritative appeal. Despite their apparent critique of the “status quo”, many of these conspiracists still invoke authority in order to consolidate their credibility, from citing “experts” to masquerading as experts themselves.

What makes this penchant for critique, as well as the appeal to authority, even more interesting is its pairing with faith and religiously inflected spirituality. Born-again Christian and Q interpreter Praying Medic, whose real name is David Hayes, embodies this apparent contradiction. A prolific author of books about spiritual healing, he has more recently veered into Q and Covid-19 conspiracy territory[5]

Apocalyptic language and skepticism seem to not go well together, but they might actually explain how conspiratorial narratives like QAnon have managed to mobilize and sustain such a diverse following, uniting 4chan denizens following digital “crumbs” with mommy bloggers fearing for the safety of their children.

Teh Internet Is Serious Business

Researchers conducting work at the intersections of online subcultures, trolling, and bigotry have pointed out that ambivalence is a feature of this volatile landscape. This landscape bears more of a resemblance to the anarchic and playful cyberspace of the 90s than the post-2010s platformized web, where the offline and online are increasingly converging around the performance of a stable, quantifiable, and datafied identity. Anonymous image boards have cultivated a reputation as spaces where meaning is produced through the carnivalesque performance of identity (via linguistic signifiers rather than other conventional identity markers) and the mockery of all things serious. This ludic spirit has in more recent years been transformed into, well, a cesspool of bigotry; and, in the face of the supposed political dominance of technocratic liberalism, the memetic turn of the 2010s can be understood as a reactionary attempt towards “metapolitics”, the (ironically) Gramscian project of transposing politics in the domain of culture. 

All of this has been widely discussed and written about, of course, but it bears repeating. For the past five or so years, journalists and commentators have been caught up in the vortex of the reactionary right and its discontents—fringe internet fora and the conspiracy theories that these have spawned—often while lacking the conceptual tools to discuss these phenomena. To explain that irony and ambivalence are fundamental features of these discourses is not to take them lightly, but is crucial in order to understand them. 

And now the million-dollar question: what happens when there’s money to be made?

(Former?) alt-right darling, Laura Southern, was recently the subject of a profile in The Atlantic, which, besides painting a rather grim (with a dash of Schadenfreude) image of the way this political space treats its women, has also confirmed the suspicion of many: genuine belief in extreme ideas isn’t actually a prerequisite to publicly espouse them. In fact, we might argue that being a woman, a person of color, an LGBTQI+ individual with reactionary ideas offers an easier pathway to attention and therefore speaking engagements, and monetization opportunities; take a look at Milo Yiannopoulos (before his dramatic fall from alt-right grace). 

If these reactionary ideas can easily be combined with latent societal fears and anxieties—the perfect raw material for the creation and dissemination of conspiracy theories—,well, even better!

But weren’t conspiracy theories supposed to be fringe, marginal, and decidedly unmainstream?

The Platformization of Conspiracy Production(?)

We are arguably living through an era in which leisure is being absorbed by the neoliberal imperative of productivity. Before the “influencer’ was a venerable career path, she was an average person mediating between companies and audiences in a more or less hobbyistic manner. As the perception of the influencer is becoming increasingly imbued with inflections of celebrity, and conventional professions burdened with demands of self-branding, we are now observing figures like the journalist-as-influencer, the academic-as-influencer, the meme producer (or poacher)-as-influencer. Why not, then, the conspiracy theorist as influencer?

It is indeed a bit surprising that the figures which emerged from the murky waters of anonymous imageboard culture are building their profiles as (soooort of) legitimate entrepreneurs. Pizzagate, QAnon, and the Epstein-didn’t-kill-himself narrative were initially based on the anonymous crowdsourcing and crumb-collection of 4chan. Here a marked separation of the “real” from the online is encouraged, and the entrepreneurial spirit cultivated by mainstream platforms becomes a target of ridicule. But conspiracy entrepreneurs, like Dustin Nemos, who was recently interviewed by CBS News as one of the “leaders” of QAnon (itself an oxymoron, if we look at the non-hierarchical vernacular spaces from which QAnon originates), not only denounce anonymity but also, by monetizing their content, the ostensibly idealistic premises that are still venerated in these domains. 

Like so many other things, including sociality, labor, and cultural production, it is unsurprising that the dissemination of conspiracies might also become subsumed into the logic of what Anne Helmond has called platformization, or the “rise of the platform as the dominant infrastructural and economic model of the social web”[6].

As we are beginning to see with other kinds of celebrity, the more “established”, old-school conspiracy entrepreneurs, like David Icke (who has been banned from Facebook, YouTube, and Twitter), are increasingly being replaced by a new crop of conspiracy influencers, who have found a precarious home on YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram (as well as alt-right-friendly platforms, like Bitchute). While their viewership is generally smaller than that of the alt-right celebrities Lewis writes about, they mimic their techniques of influence, having established an alternative (facts?) media ecology, where conventional influencer practices, such as collaborations, brand deals, promotional codes, subscriptions, memberships, and merchandise, provide opportunities for the monetization of controversial content. What is sold, beyond snake oil, is an overarching lifestyle.

Of course, these creators, whether it’s the “old-school” Q interpreters or the pastel-tinted lifestyle bloggers, are aware of the dangers of deplatforming, which is why their branding takes on the added urgency of having to adapt to perceived censorship, introducing new hashtags, as well as grammatical and spelling mistakes in an effort to obfuscate the true meaning behind their hashtags and posts.

If we assume that these millennial and Gen Z conspiracy entrepreneurs do not, literally and figuratively, buy what they sell, is it only profit that motivates their peddling of outlandish theories and dicey remedies? What about the ludic, mischievous essence that undergirds the spaces where such theories often circulate? Of course, monetization and name-making betray this. And QAnon buffs having a meltdown about their supreme leader failing to sweep this election implies that not everything is a joke, after all.

Joe M, noted Q influencer, handling Trump’s loss extremely well.

On the other hand, the dissemination of misinformation is facilitated by hordes of bots, meme factories[7] or digital armies[8], all of which indicate a standardization and a certain professionalization, in line with what we’ve been seeing in other forms of invisible, “free”, and immaterial labor performed online. Platforms are now more intensely cracking down on disinformation, but this response has only come after influencers on Instagram and YouTube amassed thousands of followers by posting conspiracist content.

Does this signal the capitulation of previously untouched grounds to the logics of platformization, professionalization, and expropriation of collectively produced vernacular creativity? And if so, does this mean that the last major frontier of the playful, irreverent, and unmonetizable “old internet” is a white supremacist-infested swamp? 

There is something profoundly depressing about that.

References

[1]Jodi Dean. Aliens in America: Conspiracy Cultures from Outerspace to Cyberspace. Cornell University Press, 1998, p. 143.

[2]span style=”font-weight: 400;”>Rebecca Lewis. “Alternative Influence: Broadcasting the Reactionary Right on YouTube.’ Data & Society, 2018, https://datasociety.net/wp-content/uploads/2018/09/DS_Alternative_Influence.pdf

[3] Bruno Latour. “Has Critique Ran out of Steam?” Critical Inquiry, 30, no. 2, Winter 2004.

[4]Dean, Aliens in America.

[5]The “medic” in his moniker might imply medical training and incur a legitimacy, particularly regarding his coronavirus-related videos, but Hayes is actually a paramedic. 

[6]Anne Helmond.“The Platformization of the Web: Making Web Data Platform Ready.” Social Media + Society, July 2015, https://doi.org/10.1177/2056305115603080

[7]Crystal Abidin. “Meme factory cultures and content pivoting in Singapore and Malaysia during COVID-19”. HKS Misinformation Review,  July 15 2020, https://misinforeview.hks.harvard.edu/article/meme-factory-cultures-and-content-pivoting-in-singapore-and-malaysia-during-covid-19/.

[8] Estrella Gualda Caballero. “Social network analysis, social big data and conspiracy theories”. Routledge Handbook of Conspiracy Theories, Routledge, 2020, pp. 135-147.

 

by Eleni Maragkou

Vlax

In people like ours : the hyoid bone from the front

In people like ours : the hyoid bone from the front

via -> Anatomical Illustrations, by Qasim Zafar in Flickr

#publicdomain #drawing #anatomy

by vlax 0°0

December 06, 2020

Zero Days

VITA DA... DPO (S02 E05). Dialoghiamo con la Dott.ssa Paola Zambon (Torino)

In questo nuovo episodio di Vita da... DPO parliamo con la dottoressa commercialista Paola Zambon di Torino, da tempo attenta alle problematiche correlate al GDPR che si presentano negli Ordini Professionali.

by Giovanni Ziccardi

Vlax

#teaching #teachingmanuelacasasoli #education Context can motivate ...

#teaching #teachingmanuelacasasoli #education
Context can motivate mathematics; and it can also extinguish interest. Context can be part of the mathematics; and it can distract. Context can humanize mathematics learning; but humanizing mathematics is not exclusively about context.
The Calculus of Context

by Manuela Casasoli

December 03, 2020

Vlax

December 02, 2020

Vlax

#Radio Assembly line - Línea de ensamblado en #fábrica de #radio re...

#Radio Assembly line - Línea de ensamblado en #fábrica de #radio receptores

#PublicDomain #silent #movie via Internet Archive.org

Making the Synchrophase in Grebeland

https://archive.org/details/6267MakingTheSynchrophaseInGrebeland01353329

#cine #silente sobre receptores de #radio en video sin #audio > ¡esto es la gloria! :)

by vlax 0°0

December 01, 2020

Institute of Network Cultures

LCCP Symposium Memory for the Future: Thinking with Bernard Stiegler

Bernard Stiegler’s unexpected passing away in August 2020 left many things unfinished. His philosophical work, that had started by a seminal theory of technics as memory and evolved towards an interrogation of the automatic society, now examined from the perspective of anthropic and neganthropic tendencies of the world marked by pervasive AI, ultraliberalism and climate catastrophe.

In order to commemorate the span of this multifaceted work, but above all in order to probe its future, the Leiden University Center for Continental Philosophy (LCCP) and the Institute for Science in Society of the Radboud University of Nijmegen summon a meeting of both academics and actors from civil society.

Due to Covid restrictions the symposium will take place online.

Program

Thursday 3 December, 2020: Stiegler’s Engagements

14:00-14:15 Susanna Lindberg: Opening of Symposium

14:15 – 15:15

  • Pieter Lemmens: “Bernard Stiegler in memoriam / eulogy / tribute”
  • Gerald Moore: “Covid-19 and the Intermittent Society”

15:30 – 16:30

  • Dan Ross: “From the market of information to the pharmacology of the gift”
  • Anaïs Nony “Scenes of disruption: future’s power and the technological rules of law”

16:45 – 17:45

  • Mischa Twitchin: “Mnemotechnics and the Discrete Voice”
  • Harry Halpin & Geert Lovink: “Stiegler’s Technical Legacy: Another Social Network Is Possible. A Dialogue between Harry Halpin & Geert Lovink”

18:00 – 19:30

  • Judith Wambacq & Bart Buseyne: discussion with Anne Alombert (Internation), Victor Chaix (Les amis de la génération de Greta Thunberg) and Maël Montévil (Project Plaine Commune)

Friday 4 December, 2020: Thinking Through Bernard Stiegler

14:00-15:00

  • Jean-Luc Nancy: “Stiegler, mélancolie et négativité”
  • Erich Hörl: “A Thinking of Suspension”

15:15-16:15

  • Antoinette Rouvroy: “Postscript on Automatic Society”
  • Erik Bordeleau: “The Cosmo-Financial Pharmakon: Tending techniques for (non)scalable localities”

16:30-17:30

  • Jan Masschelein: “School as ‘otium of the people’: the letter… and the voice?”
  • Paul Willemarck: “Necessary default and tertiary retention”

17:45-18:45

  • Jean-Hugues Barthélémy: Jean-Hugues Barthélémy: “Ontological Difference, Technological Differance and Semantic Difference. The Problem of decentered Reconstruction of Philosophy after ‘Deconstruction’”
  • Georgios Tsagdis: “Negentropy after Stiegler”

18:45-19:00

  • Susanna Lindberg: Closing Remarks

 

More information and registration: https://www.universiteitleiden.nl/en/events/2020/12/lccp-symposium-memory-for-the-future-thinking-with-bernard-stiegler

by Chloë Arkenbout

November 27, 2020

Data Knightmare (Italian podcast)

DK 5x12 - Fuck Me Different

Apple e Microsoft finalmente d'accordo: paghiamo un PC, otteniamo un terminale!

by Walter Vannini

November 22, 2020

n-gate.com. we can't both be right.

webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the third week of November, 2020.

“Facebook has taken the name of my open source project ”
November 15, 2020 (comments)
A webshit and a larger webshit both suck at naming projects. There are about a million shitty opinions on display from Hackernews, the most prevalent of which is "this is not Facebook's fault, but instead the fault of the person Facebook paid to do it, as well as the fault of those other Facebook employees who contributed to its production," as though Facebook were some remote entity only tangentially involved with the activities of the people it hires. Several pages of misapprehensions about copyright law follow, none of which even approaches the core lesson from this tale: Github is a garbage platform designed and operated by people who still have no idea how to manage their primary product.

YouTube-dl's repository has been restored
November 16, 2020 (comments)
Faced with massive outcry moderate disappointment widespread awareness two or three bloggers whining about the removal of the source code for a popular web utility being removed from one (1) source code hosting platform, Microsoft decides to post nearly two thousand words describing their heroism in not only pressing the 'undelete' button on their admin interface, but also taking on the staggeringly selfless community-building work of "actually reading incoming messages to see if they make sense before acting on them." Hackernews doesn't know what prompted this change, but that doesn't stop them from endlessly speculating on the minutes of whatever disinterested corporate Zoom call contained the decision. Most the rest of the contents are Hackernews offering "helpful" summaries of the events to date, which are gratifyingly unburdened by excessively strenuous adherence to fact or even comprehension.

Servo’s new home
November 17, 2020 (comments)
Having been kicked out of its parents' basement, a detachment of the Rust Evanglism Strike Force wanders into a nearby abbey for shelter, setting up the plot of Season 2, wherein they discover the charity is coming from their actual competitors. One of the foot soldiers arrives in the comments to declare enthusiasm for the current situation; Hackernews wants to know what the plan is from here, but receives only silence. Hackernews, accustomed to a goals vacuum in the world of Rust development, happily spitballs possible outcomes, while the rest of the Rust Evanglism Strike Force circulates in other threads and insists that anyone gives a shit about Servo.

DisneyMustPay Alan Dean Foster
November 18, 2020 (comments)
A business dispute goes public. Hackernews recognizes the names of both sides of the dispute, and so it is time to dust off the law degrees from WIkipedia University and litigate this in the Court of Forum Comments. Predictably, the result is pages of Hackernews incorrecting one another on copyright law, accounting, the specific facts of this dispute, and the nature of intellectual property itself. No technology is discussed.

Beirut Port Explosion
November 19, 2020 (comments)
Some analysts explain that the April explosion of a building in Beirut occurred because safety protocols were not enforced, which is obvious, but also which safety protocols and how they were violated, which is useful. Hackernews appreciates a good set of 3D models, but is more interested in either bitching about the quality of oversight from the government of Lebanon (a country which almost none of the commenters could point to on a map) or the idea that social media has obviated the need for state-level intelligence agencies. Hackernews is approximately equally qualified to defend either position.

Cover Your Tracks
November 20, 2020 (comments)
In accordance with their tradition, the Electronic Frontier Foundation has created a new website to tell us how fucked we are by advertisers, while containing almost no advice for fixing any of it. The website assesses the information your web browser sends to their servers, and then tells you to install their browser extension. Hackernews despairs of ever solving this problem, either because the attackers are too well-funded to ever truly fall behind in a privacy arms race or because Hackernews are the ones implementing the user tracking at their day job. Nonetheless, Hackernews spends a pleasant afternoon fucking with browser settings to try to get the high score.

I Miss Working from the Office
November 21, 2020 (comments)
An Internet would like the COVID-19 pandemic to end. Hackernews blogs about the difference between working from home and working from work; the satisfaction with the former overall seems to depend entirely on housing costs where Hackernews lives. The solution, says Hackernews, is to move some place cheaper, because fixing problems is impossible.

by http://n-gate.com/hackernews/2020/11/21/0/

November 21, 2020

Dyne.org video channel