Monday, December 19, 2022
Friday, December 16, 2022
Is Trump’s audience so dumb they bought $100 Trump Superhero NFT’s thinking they’d appreciate in value?
Or is Trum’s audience so dumb they bought $100 digital pictures of Trump as Homelander not realizing they were also technically a crypto investment?
Or did someone just launder half a million dollars through Trump?
The world may never know…
Thursday, December 15, 2022
Going forward, I won’t even be posting links on Twitter.
The purge of Musk-covering journalists was the last straw. Musk is, of course, well within his rights to make up whatever new terms of service he sees fit and then arbitrarily claim to apply them to whoever he wants. It’s his system, and he gets to.
But the reasons he’s doing it are obvious and execrable. Don’t even remotely consider the arguments of choads who equate this to their worst fantasies of what Twitter was up to pre-Musk, and their much looser definition of “journalist”, in order to justify it. What’s different is who they’re targeting and why, and it’s more than just a difference of “right vs. left” opinion. But you know that.
If you don’t make a living that involves promoting yourself on Twitter, I recommend you disengage too. Stop posting. Stop liking and retweeting. Starve the beast of content. If you can, switch to a third-party client that lets you read stuff without seeing ads. If you do make a living that involves promoting yourself on Twitter, it’s obviously a lot more difficult, but eventually there won’t be much of an audience left to promote to.
Here’s where the content goes. youaredumb.net and oldnerd.net. Theyr’re bog-standard Google Blogger, do what you need to do to see or be alerted. I’ll keep using Mastodon and Post (and try to get that info in the links this weekend) and whatever else tries to capture Twitter’s disaffected audience, but for putting my thoughts out there, this is the place. Because that place is a fascist shitshow.
Monday, December 12, 2022
At this point in time, being willfully ignorant - shutting yourself off and unplugging from the moment-to-moment drama and hubbub of everything that’s going on, whether it be the Twitter drama or, say, sitting Congresscritters saying that if they’d done Jan 6 they’d have done it right and brought guns - feels like dereliction of duty.
Blissful, sweet, wonderful, luxuriously tempting dereliction of duty that could only lead to more happiness and joy.
Sunday, December 11, 2022
As Twitter somehow seems to find new ways to get worse, here’s how I see the current landscape.
Mastodon: Has reached a point of “mostly functional” for me, but most of the people who follow me on Twitter aren’t there and most of the people I follow are either not there or not posting.
Hive: Appears to have been killed dead by massive security flaws.
Post: Took me half an hour to even find how to get on the waiting list to be considered for an account, which’ll happen when you name your social media company after the verb for putting something on all social media. Currently indestinguishable from a data harvesting scheme from the early 2000’s but I’m told that once you get on it’s an actual thing?
Counter Social: Haven’t messed with this yet because it seemed like a Mastodon spinoff and the last thing I need are Mastodon’s sloppy seconds. Could be convinced otherwise as things get desperate.
Twitter: Twitter seems to be a test of how quickly you can heat a pot and still keep all the frogs in it. Everyone seems to be waiting for it to hit bottom so they can decide if the career and personal benefits outweigh the final ethical and societal cost and it keeps not hitting bottom. Even just posting links without searchable and engageable content leaves me with a sour taste in my mouth at this point but I have no idea how even that is working. with the audience. Seems like not well but maybe everyone’s still finding things here? I’m not sure how shouting into an empty void and shouting into a sparsely populated void is different in any meaningful way but it does feel different.
For about ten years now, we’ve been living in a world, and in a society, that is structured to greatly reward people when millions and millions of people say “Jesus Fucking Christ, what an insufferable, evil, and wrong complete asshole you are.”
It’s not just that a substantial audience for insufferable, evil, wrong assholes, although that’s a significant part of it. And it’s not even that the systems in place to officially declare that someone is an insufferable, evil, wrong asshole have deteriorated to the point that they’re worthless, although that’s a significant part of it too.
But the biggest part of it is that a variety of socioeconomic factors have led to the decision, at an institutional level, that there really is no such thing as bad press.
“There’s no such thing as bad press” was a saying, not a fact. Hitler got a lot of bad press, at least until recently. To pick a more recent example, Jared from Subway got a ton of press and it didn’t work out well for him.
But with the current crop of insufferable, evil, and wrong complete assholes, whether it’s a Sinema, a Rowling, a Chapelle, a Musk, or of course a Trump, the socioeconomic benefits of being awful now so far outweigh the personal cost that the only reasons NOT to do it are ethical and moral ones. Which creates a perfect environment for sociopaths to thrive.
Remember when “doubling down” was supposed to carry an element of risk? The blackjack term was brought over to the political side of the discourse BECAUSE it was a gamble. Not backing down from your awfulness used to be a risk because there was a chance that society and institutions would turn against you and reject you.
But not anymore. Doubling down pays out 99.9A% of the time, and we’ll see how it works out for Kanye. Who wouldn’t take those odds?
I don’t have an answer. If you ignore it, you let it grow and fester and turn into action. And if you pay attention to it, you reward it with importance and attention in an economy that’s almost exclusively attention-based. It all ends badly.
Friday, December 9, 2022
Thursday, December 1, 2022
At least we know that Neuralink isn’t a secret plot for mind control, because anyone who’d hear Elon Musk say “I want to open up your brain and put my equipment in it” and signs on the dotted line is already a successful product of his current, public plot for mind control.
I didn’t even want that fucker’s stuff on my roof.
Tuesday, November 29, 2022
Funny how Congress definitely can pass a law to force rail workers to take what they’re given because the rail work is so vital to the economy, they they apparently definitely can’t pass a law forcing rail companies to give the workers what they ask for because their work is so vital to the economy.
Monday, November 28, 2022
Sunday, November 27, 2022
This is a bit of an expansion of some thoughts I had in the early days of the post-Elon Twitter Upfuckery, but the fun, for sufficiently loose definitions of fun, part of all this is that post-Elon Twitter is a rare example of right-wing conspiracy theories meeting reality and exploding.
The reason this doesn’t happen very often is that there are systems in place whose sole purpose is to deliberately insulate the beliefs of the right from reality. For a long time, that insulating layer were Republicans in power, who played along with the rubes but didn’t get high on their own supply.
But by the time the inmates were fully in charge of the asylum, the combination of generally complex systems and an entire infrastructure designed to create an alternate version of reality meant that right-wing conspiracy theories were rarely acted upon, and, on the off chance they were, the results of that were obfuscated to make sure the worldview’s legitimacy remained intact.
This, of course, was not true. Twitter’s moderation was inconsistent and capricious because, first, moderation is hard, and second, Twitter’s moderation goal wasn’t “keep people safe” but rather “prevent Twitter from being yelled at too badly”, which made them very slow to react to things like neo-Nazi death threat campaigns.
The solution was, at least nominally, FrEe SpEeCh, defined as “zero consequences for the vilest fucking ideas on the planet”, which of course blew up when some of the new legal comedy was anti-Musk free speech, which didn’t stay free for very long.
An even bigger example is the Blue Check Debacle, still unfolding as I write this. The right-wing conspiracy theory was that Twitter’s blue check system was elitist and capricious because the Elites wanted to impose their Elite Faux Expertise on the unwashed masses, and that’s why their COVID-denial account couldn’t get a blue check. They even turned “blue-check” into one of their fun made up pejoratives.
In reality, blue checks were elitist and capricious because tech weirdos have starfucker tendencies and power corrupts and instead of checks meaning “you are who you say you are” they decided it meant “we’re not going to bother letting people know you are who you say you are unless we think you’re important” which is a fundamentally elitist and capricious metric.
But because they had incorrectly identified the problem in their eternal quest for victimhood, Twitter’s “fix” was to let everyone have the “important” part for a nominal fee and ignore the “you are who you say you are” part. Great solution to the problem if that was the problem but of course it wasn’t and it blew up spectacularly and now they’re scrambling to find a convoluted plan that pretends they were right all along while keeping people from impersonating Eli Lilly.
It’s all playing out in real time, and failing spectacularly, because, again, the insulating layers that keep this from happening are mostly absent. Elon himself is a product and active member of right-wing white nationalist faux-aggrieved Twitter, so he’s ruling based on those beliefs. And because Twitter is its own broadcast network, in a way, it’s all being aired, publicly, in real time, with minimal filtration. It’s glorious to watch, assuming you can isolate that feeling from the giant pile of collateral damage that’s happening.
Saturday, November 26, 2022
Wednesday, November 23, 2022
The Colorado nightclub shooter’s father and grandfather are both vile, virulent, violent homophobes of the highest order. So on the off chance the shooter is in fact enby, and it’s not just a lawyerly ploy from a group of people whose entire thesis is that people can and do identify that way frivolously, casually, falsely, and for personal gain, the shooting was STILL the direct result of right-wing homophobia and hate and the environment that creates.
They pulled this shit with the last (for a sufficiently loose definition of last, as must be said with mass shootings) right-wing mass shooting terrorist. Find a thing they think is exclusively identified with liberals (last time it was “from Berkeley”), and loudly proclaim that despite all the obvious evidence to the contrary, it couldn’t possibly be their fault.
Monday, November 21, 2022
Sunday, November 20, 2022
OK. Here’s the deal. I cannot in good conscience keep provicing content to Twitter now that Trump’s back on it. They brought him back for the engagement boost and the only way to counter that is with engagement removal.
So. The Not A Blog is back, and it’s a fucking blog now. Twitter is microblogging, this is macroblogging. Unleess I only have a little to say, at which point it’ll be a tweet-length micropost here.
Posts and content will continue to be linked to on Twitter but that’s it, until the site burns to the ground or I’m confident the tiny audience has moved on to other platforms.
One of those platforms is Mastodon. Yes, the carob of social media. Some of my weeks-old follow requests finally processed, so maybe it’s working better? You should be able to search me there with You Are Dumb or my official Mastodon address, @firstname.lastname@example.org
I may, in fact, have to fuck with Instagram, at least for Oldnderd, but we’ll see.
I believe you can “follow” Blogger blogs and also RSS them and over the next few weeks I’m gonna see if there are things I should be doing to make that work.
Coming out of retirement because, frankly, the possibly fatal wounding of Twitter gives me some stuff to say that I’m not necessarily seeing said a lot of other places, so I might as well say it myself.
And one thing Elon Musk has accomplished, for a sufficiently loose definition of the term, is to have a group of followers with worse arguments than Trump’s. It’s hard to believe, but hear me out. It’s a lot like the arguments of Trump supporters, but with less variety. It’s a small, shitty subset of the Trump arguments, which makes it even more repetitive.
But my “favorite”, that we’ll be discussing today, is “And yet here you are, USING TWITTER!” to anyone complaining about how Musk is treating Twitter’s rules, policies, pricing, or employees. Oooh, you sneaky Musckvite, you’ve caught me, a Twitter user, using Twitter to complain about Twitter, which I use. Clearly, you’ve won the day.
Twitter, you see, is a social media site. And every single social media site is a Faustian deal with the forces of evil. Facebook’s litany of evil is well documented, but if that’s where your family posts its news, you shake hands with Zuckerberg and count your fingers after.
Mastodon? Guess what, you’re now the Carob Person. Using Mastodon is constantly insisting to everyone who loves chocolate that once you get used to the weird taste and texture, it really is superior to chocolate in every way.
Twitter’s Faustian bargain, pre-Musk, was fairly standard. Twitter is an aggregation of the comments section every news article used to have before they decided that was too much work and they could just post the article on Twitter and let it happen there. Inadequate and inconsistent moderation meant a constant stream of harassment if your account or your tweet saw enough eyeballs.
It’s Twitter behavior that led to the coining of “reply guy”. You’re welcome.
The point is, there isn’t some magical non-Twitter place to go to interact with people the way you do on Twitter, which is why Twitter still even fucking existed for Musk to buy. This is how all social media companies of any size retain their position - by creating a web of connections that makes it very difficult to leave no matter how bad the experience gets or how toxic the ownership becomes.
That paradigm stops applying, of course, when some dipshit takes over and fires everyone who keeps it running properly because they refuse to be hardcore serfs in his dudebro fiefdom. Which is another reason to dust off the ol’ URL and point it somewhere moderately functional.