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    | 311 notes
    Today, we want to defend Tumblr, after it was cowardly hacked yesterday.

Bim Adewunmi: You can hack it, you can bash it, but Tumblr’s still got it
Like any internet community, it is not without its flaws. Here, the hackers’ comments came uncomfortably close to a lot of Tumblr users’ excesses. It is sometimes a deeply silly place, keen on self-congratulation. It is also largely decadent, and because it is made of millions of fallible human beings, it’s not always terribly original or profound. But that does not mean it does not have the capacity to be those things, and it often is.
Tumblr is where I go to laugh, but it also a fantastic place to learn: this is where I first read about Trayvon Martin, for example. It often hosts some of the most eloquent and nuanced conversations about society, from gender to race to equality and social justice. It is a community that gives and shares and supports its own – only last night, I witnessed people organise a whip-round for a fellow Tumblr user who needed to get out of an abusive situation fast.
It can be a brilliant place, because it is a lot more than the sum of is parts: you get out of it what you put in. Not many sites can give you all of that and a gif of Chris Evans punching a bag in slo-mo. And for that reason, I’ll remain onboard. No contest.
Read the rest here

    Today, we want to defend Tumblr, after it was cowardly hacked yesterday.

    Bim Adewunmi: You can hack it, you can bash it, but Tumblr’s still got it

    Like any internet community, it is not without its flaws. Here, the hackers’ comments came uncomfortably close to a lot of Tumblr users’ excesses. It is sometimes a deeply silly place, keen on self-congratulation. It is also largely decadent, and because it is made of millions of fallible human beings, it’s not always terribly original or profound. But that does not mean it does not have the capacity to be those things, and it often is.

    Tumblr is where I go to laugh, but it also a fantastic place to learn: this is where I first read about Trayvon Martin, for example. It often hosts some of the most eloquent and nuanced conversations about society, from gender to race to equality and social justice. It is a community that gives and shares and supports its own – only last night, I witnessed people organise a whip-round for a fellow Tumblr user who needed to get out of an abusive situation fast.

    It can be a brilliant place, because it is a lot more than the sum of is parts: you get out of it what you put in. Not many sites can give you all of that and a gif of Chris Evans punching a bag in slo-mo. And for that reason, I’ll remain onboard. No contest.

    Read the rest here

  2. Photo

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    Arwa Madhawi explains the appeal of @YourinAmerica:
I mean, how hard can it be? When in Rome, speak Roman, and when in America, speak American. You know the sort of thing: you say tomato, they say Heinz; you say potato they say fries. It’s cultural integration 101, but apparently some people didn’t get the memo. Luckily for those people, there’s Twitter, which is awash with helpful sorts imparting advice such as: “If your in America and can’t speak English then you shouldn’t own a donut shop.” There are, indeed, so many nouveau nativists defending the sanctity of American English while simultaneously slaughtering it that they’ve spawned their own Twitter-bot.
Set up last Friday, @YourinAmerica is devoted to responding to Joycean formulations such as “I really hate when people sitting near us speaking in a foreign language your in America you speak American”, with concise lessons on the use of your versus you’re. The account, which now has over 12,000 followers, seems to have struck a cultural chord. It gained nearly 8,000 followers in three days just from the repetition and reiteration of a basic rule of grammar, albeit with a few snarky hashtags thrown in. Meanwhile, many of the people posting the offensive remarks have swiftly deleted them. Grammar fascists 1, fascists 0.
Read the rest here

    Arwa Madhawi explains the appeal of @YourinAmerica:

    I mean, how hard can it be? When in Rome, speak Roman, and when in America, speak American. You know the sort of thing: you say tomato, they say Heinz; you say potato they say fries. It’s cultural integration 101, but apparently some people didn’t get the memo. Luckily for those people, there’s Twitter, which is awash with helpful sorts imparting advice such as: “If your in America and can’t speak English then you shouldn’t own a donut shop.” There are, indeed, so many nouveau nativists defending the sanctity of American English while simultaneously slaughtering it that they’ve spawned their own Twitter-bot.

    Set up last Friday, @YourinAmerica is devoted to responding to Joycean formulations such as “I really hate when people sitting near us speaking in a foreign language your in America you speak American”, with concise lessons on the use of your versus you’re. The account, which now has over 12,000 followers, seems to have struck a cultural chord. It gained nearly 8,000 followers in three days just from the repetition and reiteration of a basic rule of grammar, albeit with a few snarky hashtags thrown in. Meanwhile, many of the people posting the offensive remarks have swiftly deleted them. Grammar fascists 1, fascists 0.

    Read the rest here

  3. Quote

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    Try to imagine the online behaviours that people consider humorously objectionable (the humblebrag, the promo, the retweeting of compliments and “Follow Friday” recommendations) enacted in real life. Imagine telling friends and strangers that someone thinks you’re brilliant, or that you’re about to reach a certain number of followers and would like to thank them all, or repeating every compliment on a work you have produced with a straight face. It is simply the sign of a “weak and disturbed personality”, as Talal Thaqafi, a psychologist who backed up the fatwa with his medical opinion, declared. Wincingly close to the bone, he also went on to say that those who indulged in such behaviour “suffer from an internal void, and by increasing amounts of followers, he or she satisfies such a void, and draws attention to him or herself”. Nesrine Malik on the Saudi cleric who declared a fatwa on buying Twitter followers
  4. Five steps to becoming a heavyweight Twitter fighter

    | 2 notes

    Here’s rule #2:

    • Hit hard and hit low

    You’re in full view on a public forum, making Twitter the perfect venue to show everyone your intellectual bravery by using every instrument at your disposal to attack your antagonist. Well, maybe not racism as that’s quite frowned on. But misogyny? That is very much on the table. When [food critic] Coren told [Huff Po journalist] Vincent “go fuck yourself you barren old hag”, this was obviously a thoroughly clever reductio ad absurdum of her temerity in saying she wasn’t interested in reading about Coren’s own spawn endlessly. Even if it did look a lot like the plain rank sexism of implying that a woman’s opinion was worthless if she wasn’t pretty, young and fertile. Handily, it also showed that Coren was not, in fact, one step up from a Mumsnet blogpost, but several stages down, and rolling around with the slime in the nappy bin.

    To read the other rules, go here

  5. What’s so wrong with eating alone?

    | 27 notes

    Earlier this week, CNN reported on a new social networking site called Invite for a Bite. The concept is to match women with platonic lunch or dinner partners so that we can avoid the shame and loneliness of eating alone. Except, some of us love eating alone. My preference is to bring along a book or an iPhone’s worth of Instapapered articles, but even when eavesdropping is the only entertainment on offer, I still consider eating alone to be one of life’s greatest pleasures (topped only by solitary cinema visits).

    For an introvert like me, the site promotes the idea that hanging out with a random stranger (or several) is fun. It’s not that I’m against making friends, but compulsory small talk is torturous. And I’ve been cornered by enough strangers in cafes, shops and on public transport to get an idea of how the British public thinks.

    Diane Shipley on eating alone: nuthin’ wrong with that! Is this something you enjoy?

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