Screen Shot 2015-01-20 at 2.20.24 AM

Be Kind, for Everyone You Meet Is Misattributing This Quote in a Meme

Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle. The original, “’Be pitiful, for every man is fighting a hard battle,’ was the tender Christmas message sent by Ian Maclaren to the readers of The British Weekly” (1898) uses an unfamiliar definition of “pitiful” and uses the gender-specific “man,” so the modernized version is understandably more popular.

Screen Shot 2015-01-12 at 12.49.40 PM
1

Twine: the program that’s democratised the video gaming world

Twine games look and feel profoundly different from other games, not just because they’re made with different tools but also because they’re made by different people – including people who don’t have any calcified notions about what video games are supposed to be or how they’re supposed to work. While roughly 75% of developers at traditional video-game companies are male, many of the most prominent Twine developers are women, making…

image

When T.S. Eliot Invented the Hipster

  Prufrock cannot bring himself to ask his companion the “overwhelming question” (which he never identifies) that carries us through the poem. He is paralyzed by the same overwhelming fear of missing out (yes, “FOMO”) that plagues a generation facing endless options and clear few choices: “In a minute there is time / For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse,” Prufrock laments. Instead, not daring to “disturb the…

image
3

Why I Still Blog

I particularly value blogging because of the visibility of older content. Facebook and Twitter don’t make it easy for you to contextualize links pointing to something relevant you posted a month or a year or decade ago. It may seem right to ask, after so many years: what is left to discuss about blogging? We all know what it is. We all know what it does. What used to be…

image
3

You don’t hate millennials. You hate 21st-century technology.

A favorite observation about millennials, both in the workplace and in their daily lives, is how wired in they are with their preferred technologies. Why can’t they just pick up the phone and talk? Surely, their obsessive use of technology is driving this generation to be more isolated and cynical (and more eye contact–averse) than those that preceded it. But new research published in Psychological Science shows that over the…

Screen Shot 2014-12-18 at 3.24.15 PM

One Does Not Simply: An Introduction to the Special Issue on Internet Memes

When we envisioned a journal of visual culture issue on ‘Internet Memes’ over two years ago, we sensed that the best way to be generous to our subject matter was to not presume to know what it would look like. Academic publishing – characterized by its long review periods and labored revision processes – habitually plays tortoise to the internet’s hare. Entire online communities can rise, flourish, and evaporate in…