Derek Powazek Profile picture
“The lost patron saint of traumatized designers.” Author of “Design for Community.” Then: early web community pioneer. Now: farmer at @milkbarnfarm. He/him.
7 Apr
Can't get over what an amazing accomplishment the vaccine is, the speed of its creation and rollout, and how we should all be celebrating this amazing American moment ... but we're not because the GOP and Fox News made it partisan from the jump just to protect their chief idiot.
I got my first vaccine dose in a convention center staffed by volunteers and members of different uniformed branches of the military, all working together, surrounded by my neighbors rolling up their sleeves to protect themselves and each other. It was beautiful.
This should be a national moment of pride, representing the best America can do when we all put our backs to the wheel together.

Instead, the morons in my neighborhood are still running around maskless and screaming about tyranny because they're brainwashed by outrage peddlers.
Read 5 tweets
7 Apr
Easier to pick the three I'd keep: MCU, Star Wars, and Star Trek. And honestly the last two are iffy, based on the most recent offerings. Maybe, I dunno, we should come up with new things.
DC: I will always love the animated series' from my youth. That's my Justice League. But let's be real, there's only been one decent DC movie (WW) and the rest have ranged from amusingly bad (Aquaman) to unamusingly bad (everything else).
Jurassic Park: One good movie and an endless series of soulless cash grabs. Next.
Read 14 tweets
6 Apr
The mistake is ever taking Republicans seriously.
Everything Republicans say should be seen as a toddler making up stories and responded to with that same energy.

"Okay, Mitchie. What a great story. You're so creative! Why don't you go play in the yard. The adults are governing."
"Well, Mitchie, in a democracy, we want everyone to vote. Yes, even them! See, that's what makes democracy work. You'll understand the consent of the people when you're older."
Read 5 tweets
6 Apr
Wow. So many lives cut short for so long. I never thought I'd see it.
All us Gen Xers looked at the Covid guidelines and went, "yup, okay, happy to help" because we're old enough to remember watching young people die horribly from a virus.
I remember the candlelight vigils. I remember the anger at a government that did nothing. I remember crying at the quilt.
Read 6 tweets
6 Apr
I have to say, Falcon and The Winter Soldier has left me cold so far, but the Loki show looks like so much fucking fun.
The Falcon and the Winter Soldier is pretty much what you'd expect from a Marvel TV show. Characters you know, dealing with the continuing universe, some action and some (painful) quips. It's all really unsurprising so far.
WandaVision was so weird and so surprising that it set my expectations to maximum. So something so formulaic after that is a letdown, even if it's not bad.
Read 4 tweets
5 Apr
This genuinely made me laugh. ImageImage
And to think of how many hours I spent listening to that guy in my youth.
Anyway, hey moron, you already need vaccines to travel.
Read 10 tweets
1 Apr
Listening to today's episode of The Daily and it's SO CLEAR how this unionization drive at Amazon could have been avoided if they'd treated their employees like people instead of cogs in a machine.
nytimes.com/2021/04/01/pod…
If you track your people BY THE SECOND and you DO NOT COMMUNICATE THE RULES, it's going to make them CRAZY. This is so obvious it hurts.
It reminds me of a startup I worked at (name omitted) where I wound up in a middle management role (again) because the CEO was so bad at being a human, he built a software tracking system to monitor a specific employee because that was easier for him than having ONE CONVERSATION.
Read 10 tweets
30 Mar
Twitter's complete abdication to protect us from trolling an bots is why Amazon is able to use it to bully and harass us and stock it with fake users to try and influence its workers' union vote. theguardian.com/technology/202…
A properly managed community wouldn't have fake accounts cropping up like a toxic algae bloom. A properly designed community wouldn't allow a PR strategy based in generating anger and outrage.
Twitter is a toxic place because the c-suite of Twitter wants it to be.
Read 5 tweets
28 Jan
Today is #HolocaustRemembranceDay and I've been thinking about what to say all day.
I am who and what and where I am because of the Holocaust. In so many ways.
I was born in the US, but my dad was born in Austria in a Displaced Persons Camp. He was there because his parents fled their tiny town of Dobre, Poland, before the real killing started.
Read 20 tweets
27 Jan
Honestly still coming to the realization that America's longstanding hatred of "communism" is really a hatred of all communal behavior, aka people coming together in solidarity, aka actual real politically-active community.

America hates community.
And America teaches Americans to be suspicious of any kind of community-based thinking. When you talk about "what would be good for the community," people look at you like you're crazy or naive or dangerous.
Honestly can you think of an American story about a group of people coming together to do ANYTHING besides win a war or a game? Can you think of a story about a community coming together to just, like, make sure everyone is okay?
Read 5 tweets
10 Jan
All the words are meaningless. They just want power and will do anything to get it. Ignore the words. Watch the actions.
They said “blue lives matter” and then beat and killed a cop. They said they were defending democracy while preventing an election certification. Now they say “we have to unify” while supporting insurrectionists.

None of their words matter. Look at what they DO.
This is the thing that took me the longest to learn because I like words, and I usually believe people when they talk.

But these insurrectionists only use words as cover. It’s just a whoosh of static to distract while they plan their next bloody battle.
Read 7 tweets
10 Jan
There are multiple overlapping problems, but you cannot separate the power of tech companies from our current mess. They’re accelerants.
Of course white supremacy existed before the internet. That’s a bullshit argument. No one is saying tech companies invented white supremacy. We’re saying they nurtured it, spread it, and accelerated it, because the CEOs can’t admit their role in spreading it.
Trump is a vile invention of America, making use of every aspect of our culture to bring out the devils in our nature. All he does is exploit our weaknesses using every opportunity. Social media was one of those exploits. I don’t believe he would have become president without it.
Read 4 tweets
9 Jan
I’m hearing a lot of pundits talk about the Trump bans as if they’re some new policy. They’re not. Facebook and Twitter have long had rules against the incitement of violence. The only thing that changed is they started enforcing them.
If you want to play pundit and say that they should be focusing on all their other problems, fine. Yes they should. But don’t you dare overlook how important this is.
When the social media companies have policies that they do not enforce, it shows every troll in the world that they don’t have to follow the rules either. That ended yesterday for the biggest troll in history.
Read 5 tweets
9 Jan
Facebook and Twitter banning Trump sends an incredibly powerful message:

No one is exempt from the rules these communities set. Not even the sitting president.
This sends a powerful message to the next generation of trolls who think they can get rich and famous by ostentatiously breaking the rules.

Is it at the last minute? Sure. They should have done it years ago. But I’m still glad they did it now.
Read 6 tweets
9 Jan
Trump is deplatformed and TikTok is still here.
vm.tiktok.com/ZMJ7XuyFa/
And it’s still fantastic.
vm.tiktok.com/ZMJ7XfMMm/
Really fantastic.
vm.tiktok.com/ZMJ7XVobS/
Read 23 tweets
9 Jan
Two things will definitely happen next:

1. A chorus of assholes will scream bloody murder, lash out on Twitter, and get suspended, too.

2. A wave bad takes from old media and people who don’t know what censorship actually is.
And also:

3. There’s a tsunami of “if Trump gets banned why is this guy allowed?” heading for Twitter Support right now. Pray for them. It’s gonna be rough. I hope Twitter is staffed up and ready to pay some overtime.
4. You will hear the term “slippery slope” a lot. It means “if you enforce the rules here, don’t you have to do it everywhere?”

The answer is yes. They always did.
Read 10 tweets
8 Jan
The adrenaline has worn off. Now the depression sets in.
I am completely despondent.
Now we live in a world where the President can point at the Capitol and say “attack!” and his followers do attack, and people die, and nothing much changes.
Read 6 tweets
30 Aug 20
Hey tech reporters who follow me: A man in Portland is dead tonight because a bunch of extremists planned an armed event on Facebook. Who is gonna ask Facebook about this?
Here's the post where they told their members to bring their guns.
How does this not violate Facebook's rules?
How many deaths are acceptable to be planned on Facebook?
Was this event allowed because it's a pro-Trump group?
Read 6 tweets
19 Sep 19
Fuck your pro users.
I’m not joking. Everything that’s wrong with Twitter and YouTube boils down to them being cowed by their biggest users.
Your biggest users have problems and needs that normal users do not. If you’re building for them, you’re leaving the vast majority of your users in the dust.
Read 10 tweets
12 Aug 19
One completely consistent divide I’ve observed over the years: anyone who has actually managed a community knows not to feed trolls. The people who think that drawing attention to trolls is helping have never managed a community.
“Don’t feed the trolls” was a mantra for early web communities because we saw what happens when you don’t. When you draw attention to trolls, you create more trolls. They’re drawn to it like moths to a streetlight.
Note that “don’t feed the trolls” does NOT mean “don’t do anything.” On the contrary, you have to do something. It’s just that the things you do must be invisible to the troll. If they know they’ve got your attention, they will never let it go.
Read 19 tweets
13 Apr 19
This episode was equal parts interesting and infuriating.
youarenotsosmart.com/2019/04/09/yan…
Scratch any conspiracy theory deep enough and you’ll find anti-Semitism. So this isn’t some abstract investigation into an amusing subculture. This is people who hate me and my family. They believe things that put us in ovens. It’s deadly fucking serious to me.
And it’s NOT EQUAL between democrats and republicans. We have a president now who is actively supporting lunatic conspiracy theories. That CHANGES EVERYTHING.
Read 13 tweets