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Posts tagged "Internet"

Internet Trolls Have a Case of the Mondays

Internet Trolls Have a Case of the Mondays

A doozie of an article from the WSJ last week, provocatively titled, “We’re All Internet Trolls (Sometimes).” The piece highlights recent research out of Stanford and Cornell on the patterns and habits of internet trolling. Like any study of taboo topics, the research has its own missing pieces, but some of the findings are, frankly, revealing:

New research by computer scientists from Stanford and Cornell universities suggests this sort of thing—a generally reasonable person writing a post or leaving a comment that includes an attack or even outright harassment—happens all the time. The most likely time for people to turn into trolls?…

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Another Week Ends: Cognitive Dissonance, Internet Addiction, Middle-Aged Mortals, and Unanswered Prayers

Another Week Ends: Cognitive Dissonance, Internet Addiction, Middle-Aged Mortals, and Unanswered Prayers

Update: Accompanying episode of The Mockingcast up on iTunes now!

ONE. On Monday, Mallory Ortberg, founder of The Toast (the-toast.net), posted a video in which she discusses her experience founding a blog. It’s safe to say that we’ve become fans of The Toast here at Mockingbird, and Ortberg’s language in this video, and her transparency, explains why. She speaks in a direct, very honest (and extremely funny) way, reminding us that when we look at the true ridiculousness of everyday life we experience the freedom to laugh at ourselves.

She starts by calling out performancism, the anxiety that accompanies trying to live…

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The Internet and the Ache in Franzen's Purity

The Internet and the Ache in Franzen’s Purity

Jonathan Franzen’s new novel, Purity, came out last week, and although it temporarily cost me some good moods and positive self-regard, I got through it. Franzen has a real knack for exposing the ugly personal implications behind most of my daily behaviors. He has a low anthropology, which is partially why his writing is so attractive. Purity includes his take on what the Internet and social media mean for the contemporary self as well as his accurate insights into relationships and family life, achieved so memorably in Freedom and The Corrections. This book gets in your face but also boasts…

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Another Week Ends: More PC, Orthorexia, Perfect Ripostes, Grace in Addiction in Asheville, SBTB Redivivus, and Implausible Pop-Country Songs

Another Week Ends: More PC, Orthorexia, Perfect Ripostes, Grace in Addiction in Asheville, SBTB Redivivus, and Implausible Pop-Country Songs

1. One subject that’s been on our minds lately is political correctness, the orthodoxy of speech by which the progressives are divided from the bigots. It’s a division almost as absolute as that between righteous and sinners, and the press and universities – places supposed to be bastions of the liberal ideal of open speech – have instead been on the forefront of the new censorship. Fredrick deBoer, a leftist activist and grad student at Purdue, weighs in:

I have seen, with my own two eyes, a 19 year old white woman — smart, well-meaning, passionate — literally run crying from a classroom…

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What Do Dave Eggers, Dirty Toes and Shampoo Have in Common?

What Do Dave Eggers, Dirty Toes and Shampoo Have in Common?

If God was interested in being clean, I wonder if he might have stalled the incarnation a millennium or two until the days of close-toed shoes or indoor plumbing. He would then have had the fortune of choosing from fifty different kinds of shampoo at Kroger, or the experience of a soothing pedicure to rinse out the Palestinian dirt from under his thick yellow toenails.

Cultural progression, it seems to me, moves increasingly anti-dirt. Dave Eggers’ newest book, The Circle, focuses on a not-so distant future in which the latest form of social media, TruYou, has usurped all other internet big…

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Browser Histories and Manic Mental Ticker Tape

Browser Histories and Manic Mental Ticker Tape

An amazing little post appeared on The New Yorker culture pages a couple of days ago, Andrea Denhoed’s “A Fake Facebook Wedding.” She kicks off with a description of an ingenious if enraging prank before going on to ponder what our browser histories have to say about us–not always the most comfortable of subjects. Browser histories, after all, may be the most potent gateway to the human need for substitution/slate-cleaning/absolution that modern life offers, ht KW:

When we talk about the “dark side” of the Internet, we’re usually talking about criminal deception, or sometimes about porn, but what about the time…

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Is Google Searching Me?

Is Google Searching Me?

After reading this very short clip from Nicholas Carr over at NPR’s Marketplace, I immediately had to order his book The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains. For now, I’ll suffice it to say this won’t be the only post on Carr; he’s a terrific writer of science and the brain and it doesn’t keep him from speaking confessionally, or leading off Chapter 1 with 2001: A Space Odyssey. It’s not so much neuroscience as it is a scientist’s probe into a very “being” shift that is happening here in the internet age–you know, as if streaming…

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