Category Archives: Uncategorized

The Orwellian Nightmare, 21st Century Edition

Time magazine has published an excellent article on the George Orwell 1984 outcome that we are now living under, in a way that Orwell would never have imagined. It turns out, it’s not state surveillance we need to fear, it’s surveillance by private businesses. The author, Shoshana Duboff, coins the terms “surveillance capitalism” and and “instrumentarian power” and notes:

“Instrumentarian power delivers our futures to surveillance capitalism’s interests, yet because this new power does not claim our bodies through violence and fear, we undervalue its effects and lower our guard [emphasis mine]. Instrumentarian power does not want to break us; it simply wants to automate us. To this end, it exiles us from our own behavior. It does not care what we think, feel or do, as long as we think, feel and do things in ways that are accessible to Big Other’s billions of sensate, computational, actuating eyes and ears.”

The psychological effects this is having are not be underestimated. The article is here:

https://time.com/5602363/george-orwell-1984-anniversary-surveillance-capitalism/?utm_source=time.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=the-brief&utm_content=2019060710am&xid=newsletter-brief

 


Violent Video Games and Personality Traits

There’s been a lot of research about the relationship of playing violent video games and real-world violent behavior. Now comes a study reported on by Medscape that apparently shows the arrow of causality has little to do with violent game playing and a LOT to do with a person’s “trait aggression.” As the article points out, “…although the violent video game condition had some effect, it was washed out by trait aggression, the natural aggressive tendency of the child.”

Here’s the link:

https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/913679?nlid=130107_381&src=WNL_mdplsnews_190607_mscpedit_wir&uac=172126CK&spon=17&impID=1987730&faf=1


Gen Z’ers Leaving Social Media?

Michael Spencer, writing in Medium, says yes, they are. He has some good information to share about why they are leaving and what it means for the social media genre. Here’s the link:

https://medium.com/wom-protocol/why-gen-z-are-breaking-up-with-social-media-5ebc1755a744

 


Video Games and Neuroplasticity

Medscape has a nice interview with three panelists from the recent annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology. All three are themselves gamers and they provide some interesting insights into gaming. Here’s the link:

https://www.medscape.com/viewarticle/913131?nlid=129975_424&src=WNL_mdplsfeat_190528_mscpedit_psyc&uac=172126CK&spon=12&impID=1977377&faf=1#vp_1

 


The Media Are Us?

Here’s an interesting read on how fictional on-screen characters can be quite real to us. This certainly echoes research by Bandura and others when it comes to real personal affective impact of fictional characters and that it’s not just kids who seem to behave as though Mickey Mouse is real. Adults are equally likely to see fiction as impactful as reality.

https://www.hollywoodreporter.com/heat-vision/avengers-fans-are-mourning-endgame-deaths-1203380?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=THR%27s%20Today%20in%20Entertainment_2019-04-20%2005:30:00_wrobinson&utm_term=hollywoodreporter_tie

 


Facebook’s Faux Reforms

Andrew Burt, chief privacy officer and legal engineer at data management platform Immuta, has written an article appearing in Harvard Business Review that takes Zuckerberg and company to task for proposing “reforms” that are already being imposed. Essentially, as Burt sees it, Zuckerberg offers nothing of value with his recent mea culpa. The business model is still the business model, which has birthed all the problems.

It’s an interesting read. Here’s the link:

https://hbr.org/2019/04/can-facebook-ever-be-fixed?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=THR%27s%20Today%20in%20Entertainment_now_2019-04-09%2007:11:45_wrobinson&utm_term=hollywoodreporter_tie

 


Is Facebook Really Changing?

This article in Wired seems to point to a “Yes” answer:

https://www.wired.com/story/facebook-busy-weekend-news-feed-livestream/?CNDID=56758853&CNDID=56758853&bxid=Mzc2NzU4MzgyMDExS0&hasha=fb36b6219a698abc73809df259b300bf&hashb=8f2595a247bca0ebff3a165ffef30598811f7d27&mbid=nl_040219_daily_list1_p2&source=DAILY_NEWSLETTER&utm_brand=wired&utm_mailing=WIRED%20NL%20040219%20(1)&utm_medium=email&utm_source=nl

It’s certainly a step or two in the right direction!


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