Why Press the ‘Publish’ Button?

In thinking about ways that the internet is changing writing, Colin Walker asks: what exactly happens in a person’s mind when they push the ‘publish now’ button? Why make one’s words public? Writing privately, as a way of life, might be a means of self-development. Maintaining a personal archive of thoughts for future reference is …

Intentional bloggers

Hi Colin, I appreciated your post about the scale of social networks and how Micro.blog fits in the picture. I prefer reading people’s blog posts above all else. I’ve lost interest in learning about all the minutiae of people’s lives that has come to characterize social media use in general, mostly because I’ve lost interest …

Is deleting Facebook a luxury?

In a fascinating talk at the London School of Economics, Catherine De Vries argues that Euroscepticism is a ‘luxury good.’ The countries that are doing economically better are paradoxically the hotbeds of anti-EU sentiments, susceptible to populist propositions that they are being taken advantage of by other countries. By contrast, more fragile economies intuitively grasp …

Not getting angry about issues that make me angry

I have been thinking about this image a lot recently: This graphic is taken from research published this summer. The image represents 563,312 tweets about three polarizing issues in the United States: gun control, same-sex marriage, and climate change. The study presented two particularly compelling findings. First, tweets that are emotional and moral are retweeted …

This ain’t the fringes

Social media went from this ‘thing’ that could ‘influence’ political campaigns to the frontline battlefield of geopolitics. And now we suddenly realize that the discourses of our democracies and republics are mediated and hosted by private corporations. Digital literacy is democratic literacy. The two are not distinct.

Farewell Social Media

I recently purged the data from my Facebook account. This effort was shockingly labour intensive: it took a browser script all weekend to crunch, and still many aspects of the process required manual execution. Torching years and years of old Facebook activity felt so liberating that I found another script to do the same thing …