A new “Catching Up With ‘Coddling’”! We’re looking at the effects of bureaucratization on campus. In other words, as colleges evolve into megacorporations, what does that mean for inquiry, education, & #freespeech? 1/21
In describing the relationship between bureaucratization & the decisions campuses make, we consider three basic frameworks: the narrow corporatism theory, the broader corporatism theory, & the strong corporatism theory. 3/21
Recommended to me by @kmele, it has had a profound effect on my thinking on the state of the world.
The book introduces two key concepts I’ve incorporated into my “modular argument” for #freespeech. 2/10
1st: “Gurri’s negation,” his observation that the explosion of social media & information technology has tremendous power to tear down institutions, ideas, & people (e.g. cancel culture), but, as of yet, very little ability to create or sustain. 3/10
THREAD: This week, we got an email from someone who found our Catching Up With “Coddling” (CUWC) series on thecoddling.com & asked why we stopped the series after 2 articles. Concerning, b/c we’ve published 8 of them so far! 1/12 cc: @JonHaidt
It was our fault that the articles were not as easy to find as they should have been, so we’re making navigation tweaks with the help of FIRE's great web dev @jpmerig. If YOU didn’t know about them, read on! 2/12
CUWC part 1: Introduction. It, well, introduces the series, identifying the trends we’ll update with new information we’ve learned since the book was released. 3/12
THREAD: For some fun TGIF fare let’s highlight some great @TheFIREorg gifs (TGIGIFs?) made by our AMAZING comms staff! (All of which are available through the gif button on Twitter & Facebook!) 1/8
I LOVE this animation of the logo for my blog, the Eternally Radical Idea! It salutes 3 once-radical ideas — the earth’s elliptical orbit around the sun, the structure of hydrogen AND Doctor Manhattan’s iconic symbol! 2/8
This adorable gif is from our Speech Code of the Month for February 2021. We feel like we’re stuck in a Groundhog’s Day-style time loop, having complained about this civility policy @JohnsHopkins since 2006! 3/8
THREAD: In our 8th installment of Catching Up With Coddling, our series updating trends @JonHaidt and I covered in Coddling of the American Mind, we’re covering free play & childhood independence with help from @FreeRangeKids & @DianeRedleaf. 1/10
Since 2018, studies have continued to confirm the positive effects of free play on childhood development. For example, Feb 2020 meta-analysis of 16 studies showed a variety of benefits of outdoor free play vs structured indoor play 2/10
A 2020 study on an elementary school that implemented @LetGrowOrg Play Club where students participate in unstructured free play found that participants reported better moods & greater readiness to learn. 3/10
In Dec. 2019, students complained about Negy’s tweets, calling them racist & harmful; @UCF said they were #freespeech. In June 2020, students complained again. This time, @UCF solicited more complaints & opened an investigation. (2/22)
The day after that, @UCF held a video chat where students asked about Negy. Admin said, “the wheels are in motion… believe that by the time you get on the campus as a freshman, it will have been dealt with.” (The “it” was Prof Negy.) (3/22)
For part 7 of our “Catching Up With ‘Coddling’” series, I sat down with @TheAtlantic’s @katejulian to take a long look at the role of parents in childhood anxiety, some potential causes, AND a promising new treatment. 1/15
If you haven’t seen it yet, “Catching Up With ‘Coddling’” is where we revisit the topics in @JonHaidt & my 2018 book, “The Coddling of the American Mind,” with new data, developments, and caveats. 2/15
.@katejulian’s May cover story in The Atlantic, “What Happened to American Childhood,” focuses squarely on how parental anxiety contributes to anxiety in kids, & what parents (who are sometimes irrational/afraid) can do about it. 3/15
THREAD: So @vox writer @seanilling just said that ppl like me worry too much about #freespeech b/c “speech has never been freer.” Bizarre assertion in 2020. Speech was probably freer in 2005 before the "democratic recession" began, but it was certainly freer in, say, 2015. (1/65)
It’s important to address this because there’s been a trend in “nothing to see here,” thinly sourced stories claiming that nobody should really worry about free speech, Cancel Culture, or any of these themes. (2/65)
So, where to begin?
First, I'll start with the global picture, but don't worry, I'll get to my specialty, censorship in US higher education, later in this thread.
Bottomline: The situation for global #freespeech has gotten worse this year & over the past several years (3/65)
1) Do a search on our website. Good chance we've already written on it.
2) If we JUST found out about it or it JUST happened, we are probably already looking into it diligently in addition to the *1500* other cases we got this year.
3) Ask yourself: "Shouldn't I do some basic research first before slamming folks? Might I be unfairly smearing a field involving serious & devoted professionals who do work I don’t even bother to look into?”
I understand you are much more concerned about other aspects of the culture war. That’s fine. I am too. But you have a lot of friends & followers who have spent countless hours reporting on problems relating to unusually intense conformist norms coming from campus, like...
Whenever we (@TheEagleOnline) printed something controversial, someone would come into my office demanding I fire a reporter or columnist. Sometimes over something tiny, other times something understandably controversial. 2/7
.@Portland_State graduate student Lindy Treece said “I’m going to accept the results of the election no matter what because I’m not a snowflake” in a social work class. When she finished these words, she was muted, her camera shut off, AND THEN... 1/7 thefire.org/portland-state…
...the prof told her she could only return to class if she agreed not to use “derogatory” language.
Lindy replied that she could NOT & argued that what’s “derogatory'' is subjective & as an autistic person, she’s often unaware how people will be impacted before she speaks. 2/7
It’s a week about choices! Either click the link below to read my response to a bizarre claim that I/@TheFIREorg only care about the speech of my “wealthy friends,” OR continue reading to learn about the oft-misunderstood heckler’s veto! 0/5
Today, the inimitable @AdGo writes for my blog on one of the worst misunderstandings of a #freespeech concept (in this case, the heckler’s veto) I’ve ever seen from a university administrator — which is REALLY saying something. 1/5
The heckler’s veto is when an individual or group attempts to silence a speaker through noise, intimidation, or violence. The First Amendment requires government actors to avoid empowering the veto against protected speech. 2/5
Before starting this thread, I’ve really noticed a big uptick in people struggling in terms of mental health this month. Here is the thread with my best advice of what to do if you’re feeling depressed: 0/24
THREAD: @RynoWeiss & I wrote how Twitter’s enormous gaffe w/r/t banning the Biden @nypost article demonstrates 3 important concepts for understanding censorship: The Streisand Effect, Censorship Envy, & the Slippery Slope Tendency. 1/24
#NYPost published an article about docs given to them by @RudyGiuliani, allegedly scraped from a laptop owned by Joe Biden’s son.
FB & Twitter took steps to “limit its spread.” Twitter took the possibly unprecedented step of blocking the article from being tweeted or DMed. 2/24
When @JonHaidt and I decided to turn our “Coddling” into a book, we had no idea it would focus so much on parenting, but the more research we did, the more evident it became that Gen Z’s peculiarities come from dramatic shifts in parenting. 2/23
For the types of kids who go to elite colleges, parenting has shifted from relaxed and permissive to intensive, scheduled, and controlled. At best it can be called “authoritative parenting” but at worst it earns the title “helicopter parenting” 3/23
THREAD about time travel: A common misconception is that time travel is either impossible or the technology is so far in the future as is to be irrelevant. This is actually not the case. 1/8
Leaving aside the theoretical possibility of traveling backwards in time, traveling forward in time at an accelerated rate has been understood for well over a century now. 2/8
It was even confirmed in a 1971 experiment where two atomic clocks were synchronized, and one was flown twice around the world in a jet. It ended up behind its twin on the ground, meaning it had "traveled" to the future! 3/8 en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hafele%E2…
Taylor Swift has always been a strong songwriter with a special talent for storytelling. Folklore takes it to the next level, with her collaboration with @aaron_dessner of @TheNational, one of my favorite bands of the last 15 years. Give it a chance. 2/4
I was surprised & choked up by the shout out to me & @TheFIREorg!
"One of my favorite people in all of the [US] is my liberal civil libertarian friend Greg Lukianoff. Greg is the president of [FIRE], one of the last truly non-partisan civil liberties [orgs] in the [US]." 2/5
David is indeed one of my favorite people as well & I learned so much from working with him. FIRE tries to model genuine viewpoint diversity internally & I have learned endless lessons from working with smart, thoughtful folks on the other side of the political spectrum. 3/5
The “Bedrock Principle”: The idea that you must not ban something simply because it is offensive is one of the most fundamental elements of freedom of speech & First Amendment law. 1/20 thefire.org/the-bedrock-pr…
When I first launched this blog earlier this year, I promised that one thing I would do was create a “modular argument” for freedom of speech.
My first blog post was part of that modular argument. 2/20
The "pure informational theory of #freespeech", (that it's always best to know what people really think), & my "lab in the looking glass" metaphor are two key components of my idiosyncratic view on freedom of speech. 3/20