It's remarkable that the emerging consensus is that Google, FB, and Twitter already have such excessive power over the public discourse that we must ... urgently give them even more power to decide of their own discretion who and what gets to be excluded from that discourse.
What's remarkable is not that the idea is out there, but how it's so widely taken as astonishing that private companies -- who have no obligation to provide recourse of appeal for their decisions -- haven't already taken it upon themselves to serve as arbiters of public speech.
Re which you really must read @adamjwhitedc on why "the pressure for Google to adopt ever more expansive interpretations of “exploitative,” “authoritative,” and “what people are looking for” will doubtless rise": thenewatlantis.com/publications/g…
I had a piece in a prominent publication with something like a 1000 word count constraint, and there were points where the difference between these two amounted to 20 words, which meant losing an entire argument or important qualification.
Giving academics titles like "sociology professor" rather than "Thaddeus Q. Zarathustra Distinguished Professor of Sociology and Executive Director of the Zarathustra Family Intradisciplinary Institute for Sociological Studies" might help here.
Last night my amoeba croaked from his petri dish, "Why do philosophers remain stuck in an impasse between attributing mind either only to top chess players or else to the entire universe when even phototactic water beetles modulate their behavior by sensing light?" I was shook.
My amoeba dutifully cited Noë, Action in Perception. I asked if his generalization was not thus uncharitably broad. Sneering, he replied I knew nothing of the lingering prejudice against the Continentals in English-speaking programs, and wriggled to the far side of his dish.
The co-opting by Brand Twitter of Weird Twitter — whose premise is ironic mashups of ad jingles and Lovecraft as a subversion of the despair-inducing conceit of buying pancakes as a path to fulfillment — to sell pancakes is an untold scandal. people.com/food/dennys-tw…
This a sad time to remind that the contagion effect (which I've long warned about re mass shootings) is very well established for suicides, especially celebrity suicides. Use caution in your coverage. reportingonsuicide.org
Seeing lots of claims that the increase in mass/school shootings is a myth. The problem is a profusion of definitions, which yield very different trends. The salient trait is not where shootings happen or how many deaths. It's the active-shooter profile. And those are increasing.
You can tinker with the definitions to say that there is more than one mass shooting every day and everyone is about to die, or that there has been no increase at all and Sorry, the Facts Say You're Hysterical. These are both bogus. It's still rare, but definitely increasing.
I wish the @FBI would update their list continuously instead of every few years, because it's the most well-focused on the distinctive profile of the rampage shooting of any list out there (except perhaps for Mother Jones's) and could clear up misinfo if cited more often.
There is a strain of self-assuredly realist bioethical thought that says: You think new thing X is terrible? Well, we already do similar thing Y! (Realizing that the possibility of X is a good reason to stop doing Y is never an option.)
I don't mean to say pet euthanasia is an example of this, to be clear. There really is a clear moral difference.
Some thoughts on why we and our institutions may be failing to deal with mass shootings because we approach them as part of broader problems, not as a distinct and self-perpetuating plague.
The problem with almost every narrative that mass shootings are “actually an X problem” is that X is usually so broad it’s like saying the real problem with asteroid impacts is that the Earth is so big.
Take mental health: It’s easy to say “mass shootings are really a mental health problem” because, well, you’d have to be crazy to commit one, right?
No, not really. James Knoll: “the literature does not reflect a strong link with serious mental illness.”
On this terrible anniversary, some thoughts on the debate over the role of the media in mass shootings. #SandyHook /1
To start, I'll just reiterate that the evidence for a social contagion effect in mass shootings, fed by media attention, is extensive. Here's my closest look at that. 2/ wsj.com/articles/what-…
But this is a hard problem. A great many researchers agree that mass shootings are imitative. There is much less agreement on whether the effect is more conscious (infamy-seeking) or environmental (contagion). And also little consensus on how media should change practices. 3/