Papers from the first academic conference on My Little Pony studies. This is the way the world ends, not with a bang but with an imbecilic giggle.
Elderly women in Japan feel more secure in prison than outside. It’s not just financial, it’s also familial. Prison provides companionship. Quite a statement of today’s society.
We may never fully fathom other cultures, so claims this Nautilus essay. To bolster its case it presents Friar Sahagun’s ethnography of the Mexica civilization. It’s gruesome and bloody, with lurid tales of a mountain of human sacrifice. But it’s also part of a strange culture with a hierarchy of nobility that the article equates to upper crust England.
These findings indicate that processes of group identification and adaption take place in online forums in a similar way as in real life settings. The decrease in use of ‘I’ and increase in use of ‘we’ signals a collective identity formation within the forum. The increased use of ‘they’ signals increased distancing to one or more outgroups. The linguistic adaption is also a signal of normal group processes, showing that individuals in online forums want to be part of the group and hence adapts to the norms of the group.
— Read on From I to We: Group Formation and Linguistic Adaption in an Online Xenophobic Forum
Armies of ‘opinion shapers’” are now used on social media by the governments of 30 countries to support their agendas and attack detractors, according to a report by the nonprofit Freedom House.
What’s the proper response to this?
MUDs as social spaces. Quite a comprehensive piece.
We used to make change mostly using law as our primary lever. Now we use the legal lever less; we use the levers of norms of markets and technology more often. #MeToo is an example of a norms-based campaign. It’s basically saying, “We’re going to challenge how people talk about sexual assault and sexual harassment.” And once we change that norm, there’s other legal pieces, market pieces, that’ll come into play. But at its heart it’s trying to change how we have certain conversations.
Zuckerman, by the way, is also known as the inventor of the pop-up ad, an achievement for which he has since apologized. In his reformed life, he is professor of MIT’s Media Lab.
A roundup of recent scholarly articles on K-Pop (who knew?), made especially relevant by the recent tragic death of Kim Jong-Hyun.