through the screen doors of discretion

Posts tagged with 'community'.



Feel like you’ve been transported back to dial-up today? Dozens of Internet companies are participating in a symbolic slowdown of their sites in a protest for net neutrality. Netflix, Etsy, and Tumblr (to name just a few) joined in its “Internet Slowdown Day.”

Read More>

I always enjoy how Tumblr forces us to pay attention. It’s usually a technical intervention to prompt a community one. And I know (and like) the people running the Battle for the Net. Good on them. 

(via kenyatta)


How the Internet Works, Part 867, Reddit Edition

An infectious twelve-ish-year-old boy going by the name Sir Fedora posted a video on YouTube the other day celebrating the fact that the very first video he ever posted had received a like.

Not one among many or one like from someone particularly special. Just, simply, a single like. As in that first integer between zero and two. And that one like made that 12-ish-year-old happy.

So he celebrated with a new video.

Meantime, a Redditor stumbled across Sir Fedora’s video and posted this:

Incredibly enthusiastic, weird kid makes a video celebrating getting 1 YouTube like. Would be funny to get him a few subs and see his reaction.

The Internet, as the Internet is sometimes wont to do, took over. Or, at least, Reddit did.

Introducing: Operation Through The Roof.

Sir Fedora’s video celebrating his one like is now pushing a million views. He has over 70 thousand YouTube subscribers. Over on his recently started Twitter account he has over 46 thousand followers.

All because he was enthused by one like, and someone else liked that.

We all start somewhere.

Meantime, a Giant Panda tumbles about in the snow.

Image: Operation Through The Roof, via dragonboltz.

Love it so hard. 

(via kenyatta)

"Mancuso showed a slide depicting how trees in a forest organize themselves into far-flung networks, using the underground web of mycorrhizal fungi which connects their roots to exchange information.

The pattern of nutrient traffic showed how “mother trees” were using the network to nourish shaded seedlings, including their offspring — which the trees can apparently recognize as kin — until they’re tall enough to reach the light. And, in a striking example of interspecies cooperation, Simard found that fir trees were using the fungal web to trade nutrients with paper-bark birch trees over the course of the season. The evergreen species will tide over the deciduous one when it has sugars to spare, and then call in the debt later in the season. For the forest community, the value of this cooperative underground economy appears to be better over-all health, more total photosynthesis, and greater resilience in the face of disturbance."

Michael Pollan, “The Intelligent Plant” 

The trees are socialists.

(via winesburgohio)


Self-annealing properties of trees in a forest. 

Though we weren’t separate from the world, it was easy to forget the connections. A rutted gravel road, our only line to civilisation, snaked around the steep northern edge of the property. We were a mile and a half from town, 30 miles from a Wal­mart, 70 miles from a Starbucks, and more than an hour’s drive from anything that qualified as an airport. The quiet was thick and heavy, except when the coyotes, with their healthy sense of theatre, howled into the moonlight.

The Ghost Commune,” Michelle Nijhuis, Aeon Magazine, October 31, 2013. 

I think about the idea of the ‘human grid’ often and models for secular contemplative life in wide open spaces. 

Revolutionary, disruptive, magical, wizards, and on and on—contemporary digital culture has co-opted the language of revolution and magic without the muscle, ethics, conviction, or imagination of either. And it’s not that those things aren’t possible, we just aren’t living up to their meaning and instead saturating ourselves with hyperbole. These are words you have to earn, and slinging them around strips the words of their powerful meaning. Can you take a real revolution seriously if you are bombarded with messaging that your phone is revolutionary?

The Inferno of Independence,” Frank Chimero, September 24, 2013. 

"There’s so much that startup “culture” isn’t doing, and there are so many of us that stare into that world and don’t see ourselves reflected in it. So let’s not try for it. Let’s do what we’re already doing—building amazing things, creating incredible cultures and communities, changing the world—but let’s do it ourselves. Let the douchebags have their increasingly insular world. We’ve got the rest of this one to change."
"The #noshare hashtag is a humble attempt at regaining some agency over the machines - and yes the corporations and governments using said machines. To this end, #noshare is a social hack that seeks to make a public statement and establish a new norm: the right to be social without being sensed or exploited without our knowledge or consent. While traditional privacy may be dead, most of us know the difference between right and wrong. This may foster positive social pressure to respect the use of #noshare."

Patrick Meier & Bellagio/PopTech Fellows ponder ways to bolster data privacy in the era of Big Data. Read more (via poptech)



      laura olin: robdelaney: After Cory Monteith was found dead in his hotel room I...


After Cory Monteith was found dead in his hotel room I tweeted: “Love to Cory Monteith. If drugs/alcohol are killing you, there is help available. I got sober 11 yrs ago at 25. It can be done.”

I got three types of responses. The first were variations of “Thanks for saying that.” The second were “Hold up buddy; we don’t know it was drugs or alcohol that killed him.” The third were “He tried to get help! He went to rehab before. It doesn’t always work.”

1. Happy to do it.

2. We didn’t know. Now we do.

3. I know it doesn’t always work. As I said, I got sober at 25. I first sought help and tried to quit drinking in earnest at 16. I was first encouraged to get help at 15. So I know it can take multiple tries to get and stay sober if you’re an alcoholic or drug addict. I know a lot of sober alcoholics and addicts and I can’t name one who examined their disastrous life one day and thought “Enough of this nonsense” and then got and stayed sober after one try. One of the hallmarks of alcoholism and addiction is multiple attempts to curb your use/abuse of drugs and alcohol.

I’m only writing this because I sensed a fatalism in some of the replies I received from people, suggesting they believe that some folks are destined to OD and die. Fuck that. Fuck you if you think that. Addiction is a brutal, cunning, shapeshifting enemy, but I’ve seen people from every walk of life kick it in the fucking mouth. But if you want to beat it, you must ACKNOWLEDGE ITS STRENGTH and work out in your basement every day, including weekends and holidays, and then when you encounter it on a country road or a city street corner or a weekend barbecue or a subway platform, beat its fucking skull in before it gets the chance to do the same to you. Because it will, because that’s its job.

Booze and drugs are elemental; they don’t care about the alcoholic/addict. They don’t love her, they don’t hate her. But they’ll kill her dead if she doesn’t stand arm in arm with her brothers and sisters and GET HIP to the skill set that will allow her to continue to draw breath in a world where booze and drugs exist, just like firetrucks and cliffs and other things that will kill you without even noticing.

So when someone ODs or kills themselves or crashes a car and dies due to their alcohol/drug use, I don’t say “C’est la vie…,” I say “Fuck that shit,” and I circle the wagons with my other survivor friends and we go over the battle plans a FIVE-HUNDREDTH time, figure out where our dead friend that we love and mourn deviated, and we prepare to greet the coming day in a manner that will give something other than our addictions a fair shot at killing us.

I have to more to say on this another time. Until then, signal boost. We’re all in this together. Truly. 

(via lauraolin)

"African Americans are victim not just to gross racial profiling, as was Trayvon Martin, but also to linguistic discrimination, a little-understood prejudice that springs directly from linguistic prescription. Some forms of prescription, like rules against split infinitives and ending sentences in prepositions, illogically impose grammatical rules that do not naturally occur in language, but are, on some level, harmless. Others, like our culture’s categorical repudiation of African American English, have social ramifications easily as severe as racial profiling. It can be awfully difficult to excel in school, to succeed in the professional world, or to deliver credible testimony in court when virtually every institution in your society operates with the assumption that your language is fundamentally incorrect and takes it as an indicator of your intelligence."