David Thompson
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June 02, 2021

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Lee

And then there’s Decca Aitkenhead’s classic piece, Their Homophobia is Our Fault,

That one is incredible.

David

That one is incredible.

It’s one of many examples in which it becomes fairly clear that the phenomenon isn’t so much political as psychological. Which is to say, the woe is pretentious, dishonest, and inconsolable. For some people, theatrical guilt must always be the destination, regardless of the contrivance required to get there. Watching the contortion being performed can be funny, but it is pathological.

Karl

On the lifecycle of a Tech Giant...

I used to enjoy YouTube. I'm now increasingly ashamed to admit that I still use it. But my pattern of use has changed:

- In the early days YouTube would recommend to me things I like. So I'd just visit their front page.
- Now YouTube tries to hide from me the things I'd like. So I bookmark certain channels and only visit them.
- Eventually YouTube will have banned everything I like. And I won't use it any more.

Sam Duncan

“I used to enjoy YouTube. I'm now increasingly ashamed to admit that I still use it.”

https://freetubeapp.io/

Karl

freetubeapp

Nope.
You won't solve the problem of YouTube actively despising its own clients and seeking to subversively manipulate its users by painting lipstick on it.

There are now a good many YouTube alternatives, but none of them (yet?) have the advantages which YouTube originally offered - all of my favoured channels in one place and an effective algorithm for automatically offering me both their content, and similar content I'd probably enjoy.

pst314

So, The Guardian has finally come round to the Taliban point of view. It was only a matter of time, really:

Why every single statue should be taken down

"Statues of historical figures are lazy, ugly and distort history. From Cecil Rhodes to Rosa Parks, let’s get rid of them all..."

David

You won’t solve the problem of YouTube actively despising its own clients

They do seem to have gone out of their way to make the standard product worse. The demonetisation and banning of some (to my eye, unobjectionable) content providers is hard to fathom unless one assumes a determination to narrow the scope of what can be discussed. And then of course there’s the ramping up of advertising, both before and during videos, presumably on grounds that actively degrading the user experience will make people want to pay for it.

WTP

Why every single statue should be taken down

So removal from museums as well, right? Those Pharos and Caesars in the British Museum? Would abstract figures count as well? How about relief type structures? The Elgin Marbles? Rodin's The Thinker?

This world isn't real. But it's not a simulation. We're living in a Monty Python sketch.

bobmark

your routine shopping - for groceries and maybe a pair of shoes - to be replaced, “painlessly,” with forms of “artistic expression and creativity.”

Cooking is my artistic expression - sometimes of questionable taste.

Daniel Ream

is hard to fathom

I've seen similar things happen at other companies.

Alphabet Inc.'s only real revenue stream is its AdSense service. Everything else is a rounding error, and that firehose of cash is so huge that very little can affect it meaningfully enough to trigger any change in behaviour by the organization.

The result is the organization becomes complacent about its revenue stream and loses focus on maintaining/increasing it. Mid-level managers get distracted by other agendas that are at best orthogonal to the organization's original mission. Ultimately, the C-level executives get similarly distracted and end up making disastrous strategic decisions because they think the firehose of cash will always be there.

cf. RIM/Blackberry, Nortel, etc.

Squires

Statues of historical figures are lazy, ugly and distort history.

Narcissists project.

David

Statues of historical figures are lazy, ugly and distort history.

They can also occasionally remind passers-by that other times and sensibilities existed, and that whatever ideas are currently in fashion are not some eternal default, but may, in fact, be very conditional.

Karl

Cooking is my artistic expression - sometimes of questionable taste.

We should have lunch 😉

Karl

I've seen similar things happen at other companies.

It's all about capture really - capture of the organisation by groups interested in pursuing their own agenda, and capture by the organisation of its environment which might once have constrained its behaviour.

Danno

The Guardian article is better than I expected, and he makes some valid points about public statues in general - that they don't preserve history insofar as most people don't know who the old codger underneath all the pigeon droppings is, and that they're not contemporary artifacts but retconning and territory marking by pushy activist groups with privileged access to public lands and funding... a line of reasoning he doesn't extend, for example, to the concrete-and-steel Shoah memorials every city in the West has a moral obligation to install and preserve for the next ten thousand years.

They can also occasionally remind passers-by that other times and sensibilities existed, and that whatever ideas are currently in fashion are not some eternal default, but may, in fact, be very conditional.

Yes, which means that statues being unfashionable and eroded and ignored by most passers-by can be a feature and not a bug. Not everything has to be in the foreground and on-message and current-year. Since I gave up on Mad Men after season 2, I haven't been able to watch a historical drama - they've become pedantically preservationist about details like 1962 characters wearing 1962 fashions and not 1961 or 1963, but they've got the wrecking balls out in a pretty thorough and determined way for historical sensibilities, which have to be subverted and re-evaluated through a current-year lens, and representatives of the current-year being put into time machines to deliver anachronistic ripostes.

Directrix Gazer

The hothouse flowers have grown convinced that the glass is blocking them from receiving the sun's full glory, and have concieved a desire to shatter it.

Daniel Ream

they've got the wrecking balls out in a pretty thorough and determined way for historical sensibilities

While this certainly happens, as an amateur historian I will point out that it is effectively impossible to make a period piece of entertainment that is both accurate and watchable. 1962 is as far removed us as the Victorian era was from 1962, give or take a year or two. People in 1962 behaved in ways that would be shockingly offensive even to paleoconservatives in 2021, much as people in 1962 would have been appalled by the attitudes in historically accurate Victorian fiction. Some amount of anachronicity will always be there; the debate is simply where and how much.

pst314

"The Guardian article is better than I expected, and he makes some valid points about public statues in general..."

Yes, so it's not as lumpen as much of what is printed in the Grauniad, but of course all that is beside the point: All excuses for erasing history should be condemned.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Homophobic inseams.

That is all, carry on.

ComputerLabRat

Why are knee-length shorts homophobic?

Are gay men supposed to run around in Daisy Dukes? Isn't that rather clownishly stereotyping?

svh

Homophobic inseams.

Band name.

Governor Squid

...actively degrading the user experience will make people want to pay for it.

My YouTube streams have been absolutely bombarded with ads for Google Fi. The "jingle" (if you can call it such) is some sort of improv stream-of-consciousness nonsense, with no melody, no meter, no rhythm, no scansion -- it's a dog's breakfast of a "song." For days, I've been wondering just who they're targeting with their colo(u)rful nails-on-a-blackboard campaign, until just now, when David's observation made me realize that Google doesn't give a pair of dingo's kidneys if any of us get their stupid mobile phone plan -- they're really just trying to beat us into submission and make us pay for a premium subscription in order to make the horrible "jingle" go away!

Bastards.

pst314

Are gay men supposed to run around in Daisy Dukes? Isn't that rather clownishly stereotyping?

It's okay when they're stereotyping themselves. You should have seen the "AIDS Awareness" materials that gay activists were forcing into people's hands back in the day. [ rolls eyes ]

pst314

Bastards.

In other words, they are the Sirius Cybernetics Corporation.

WTP

Sometimes I have no idea where YouTube gets its suggestions for me from. Right now, while I have suggestions for a Cheers episode and an Andy Ngo piece on Antifa, I also have something about how Blondie's "Heart of Glass" changed the world...or something, something about a game called Game of Khans (????), a couple Jordan Peterson clips (so that makes perfect sense) and...for some inexplicable reason, Donald O'Connor tap dancing on roller skates. I mean Jesus Christ I could understand...but...

Directrix Gazer

I've seen people in a couple of places now complaining about YouTube ads. Do people not know about ad-blockers? Or perhaps this is only in reference to viewing the site on mobile or via a streaming device?

pst314

I've seen people in a couple of places now complaining about YouTube ads. Do people not know about ad-blockers?

I think they are talking about ads that appear in the video you are watching, and which therefore cannot be blocked. Google has been getting increasingly annoying: The first ad finishes and a second ad immediately begins. Ads appear every 5 to 10 minutes through the entire video. And so on.

pst314

Sometimes I have no idea where YouTube gets its suggestions for me from.

I strongly suspect that Google was paid to place those suggestions.

Directrix Gazer

I think they are talking about ads that appear in the video you are watching, and which therefore cannot be blocked. Google has been getting increasingly annoying: The first ad finishes and a second ad immediately begins. Ads appear every 5 to 10 minutes through the entire video. And so on.

I don't get these, as far as I can tell. Running Adblock Plus on Firefox, I get only the actual video content plus any in-line endorsements by the YouTuber.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

...I get only the actual video content plus any in-line endorsements by the YouTuber.

What he said, Adblock on a Mozilla (not Firefox(spit)) variant, zip for ads.

Uma Thurmond's Feet

"And then of course there’s the ramping up of advertising, both before and during videos, presumably on grounds that actively degrading the user experience will make people want to pay for it."

*cough* AdBlocker for Youtube *cough*

That and Easy YouTube Downloader Video Express on Firefox make using YT a joy, except for the other nonsense.

Uma Thurmond's Feet

Now I see I'm not the only one suggesting blockers. The joy of the downloader means I can avoid the ads in the middle of the video as ell.

ComputerLabRat

What the others above have said. I use AdBlock Plus for Mozilla on my computers and for Safari on my ancient mobile phone, and I don't get ads in the videos. So far, at least, I can access most videos, too, although after the Google bots see this that may change. I get more advertising in the Safari Mobile version of YouTube (I will not use their app) but it's under and around the video, not in it.

pst314

I don't get these, as far as I can tell. Running Adblock Plus on Firefox, I get only the actual video content plus any in-line endorsements by the YouTuber.

I am astonished. Will have to give that a try.

Karl

Amazing isnt' it, the lengths we have to go to defend ourselves against websites we actually want to visit?

I use Adblocker Ultimate and NoScript, and it's a reassuringly Web 1.0 experience. Apart from having to assure every single fucking page that yes, I do know about cookies, and yes I do accept their usage.

On the occasion (at work - don't tell anyone) that I accidentally browse the web unprotected I'm actually horrified at what a screaming, dancing, frantic, gibbering unusable mess it all is.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Amazing isnt' it, the lengths we have to go to defend ourselves against websites we actually want to visit?

That, and spyware, which most browsers are. For you Firefox users, something to consider. Granted, it doesn't suck as much as Chrome, but these guys have compiled an interesting list.

Some of the browsers made for Linux have versions for computers and Macs.

aelfheld
We're living in a Monty Python sketch.

Monty Python sketches have a certain consistency & logic about them.

'Woke' is singularly lacking in both, being largely a game of recondite posturing.

Daniel Ream

these guys have compiled an interesting list.

Their work on documenting browser security is impressive, but when they devote significant column inches to "Pokemon got too easy so we need to destroy capitalism" I feel like their conclusions need to be taken with some skepticism.

I own five consoles and several hundred games and **** I hate video gamers.

David

On the occasion… that I accidentally browse the web unprotected I’m actually horrified at what a screaming, dancing, frantic, gibbering unusable mess it all is.

Whenever I’ve had to check some article on a local newspaper site and been obliged to go commando, with no adblocker, it’s been quite the experience. Even with a fast connection, it can take forever for the avalanche of garbage to download, before said garbage immediately obscures any content you were hoping to read. Given the low priority of the content, the layouts are terrible, at times practically illegible, with articles even jumping about the screen as you’re trying to read them, in order to make way for more adverts, and with ad banners quite literally covering headlines before you can finish reading them. At times, it’s almost stroboscopic, a migraine waiting to happen.

Wacko Byrd

Ad blockers are homophobic.

Karl

Odd isn't it, how so many people's 'best self' is a raving loony?

pst314

Odd isn't it, how so many people's 'best self' is a raving loony?

Indeed. It seems that she merely went from one set of lunatic beliefs and practices to another.

"I think I knew one sober person..."

She avoided them because they were "boring" while they avoided her because she was stupid and shallow and toxic.

pst314

Odd isn't it, how so many people's 'best self' is a raving loony?

"...at this she points to a machine that resembles a particularly glossy food processor – 'which will infuse the water with hydrogen molecules and enable me to become my best self.' "

So she is still a self-absorbed, ignorant bint. She merely replaced sex and drugs with obsessive diet fads and "health" drugs.

David

which will infuse the water with hydrogen molecules and enable me to become my best self.

A while ago, I was chatting to someone who was enthusiastically telling me about some of her friends and peers, mostly ladies in their fifties, who were into “wellness” and who had spent quite a lot of time, many decades, “finding themselves.” I asked exactly how long this process was supposed to take, for supposed adults, and whether any great discovery was yet in sight. I then realised, belatedly, that this was not a line of enquiry that was expected, or particularly welcome.

ComputerLabRat

Odd isn't it, how so many people's 'best self' is a raving loony?

Indeed. Worse if they have the quid to blow on all the loony gadgetry, pills, and powders.

Related to stupid, shallow, smug cows, an article that was linked at the bottom of the above quoted article, also in the Telegraph Women section:

https://web.archive.org/web/20210602165415/https://www.telegraph.co.uk/women/life/wont-have-vaccine-no-friend-mine/

The woman she unfriended was lucky - who needs that shallow toxicity in their lives?

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Taylor is in no danger of going “completely woo-woo,"...

True, not of "going" when one is already gone.

Governor Squid

She merely replaced sex and drugs with obsessive diet fads and "health" drugs.

I think she's absolutely fabulous, sweetie dahling.

pst314

Odd isn't it, how so many people's 'best self' is a raving loony?

"To her left is a wall of kombucha. 'I drink it morning, noon and night. I drink it like I used to drink wine.' "

Kombucha seems to be just the latest "superfood" fad. I know people who seem a bit fanatical about it. Later, of course, it will be shown to be nothing special and the easily led will move on to the next thing.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

Completely unrelated except for the moonbattery, as we haven't had Interpretive Dance for a spell, I bring you The Chicago Teachers Union performing "Safe Return... or No Return."

The original title of "Yeah, We Really Are Just Looking For Reasons Not To Go Back To Work" was nixed by The Union Committee For Not Going Back To Work as they thought it might bring too much attention to why the hell public schools in Chicago need dance teachers.

Be sure to have the volume on for this one.

Darleen

To her left is a wall of kombucha. “I drink it morning, noon and night. I drink it like I used to drink wine.” And oh, how she used to drink wine

But she claims herself to be alcohol and sugar free?

Kombucha contains alcohol, vinegar, B vitamins, caffeine, sugar, and other substances. (snip)

Special Precautions and Warnings

Pregnancy and breast-feeding: Kombucha is POSSIBLY UNSAFE during pregnancy and breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.

Alcoholism: Kombucha contains alcohol. Avoid it if you have a drinking problem.

Diabetes: Kombucha might affect blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Watch for signs of low blood sugar (hypoglycemia) and monitor your blood sugar carefully if you have diabetes and use kombucha.

Rxc

It was interesting that the Guardian article talked about taking down all the statues, including Ghandi, MLK, and Risa Parks, and even Saddam Hussein, but there was no mention of ANY Marxist-Leninist-Stalinist-Maoist statues. The right wing and the great humanitarians were mentioned but not the socialists. I don't think they are all gone, yet.

Karl

From the interpretive dance tweet: "It's our livelihoods ... versus our lives"

Funny, I don't see any evidence of them having to make that choice.

pst314

Kombucha contains alcohol, vinegar, B vitamins, caffeine, sugar, and other substances. (snip)

I only knew about vinegar, not the alcohol and caffeine. The latter two might explain part of its popularity: virtuous stimulation.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

♫If you're going
To San Francisco,
Be sure to have
A fire extinguisher
For your hair...♫

Darleen

Andy Ngo is back, confirming that Portland is longer part of the USA.

pst314

♫If you're going to San Francisco
You're gonna meet some evil people there...♫

Karl

A fire extinguisher for your hair

I especially appreciated how they blurred out the miscreants' faces so as not to stigmatise arsonists who set fire to innocent people's hair on public transport.

Farnsworth M Muldoon

♫If you're going
To San Francisco,
A city official,
Will try to take your wallet there...♫

sH2

Woke NFL...

https://pjmedia.com/instapundit/453771/

Governor Squid

Woke NFL...

Virtue signalling seems to work great amongst the ignorant and neurotic herds on Twitter, but most of us normals see it and wonder what egregious sins the person is trying to cover up or atone for.

TimT

The Guardian article is better than I expected, and he makes some valid points about public statues in general - that they don't preserve history insofar as most people don't know who the old codger underneath all the pigeon droppings is, and that they're not contemporary artifacts but retconning and territory marking by pushy activist groups with privileged access to public lands and funding.

We place too much of an educational burden on art. Nobody will think of history when passing these statues by. I'll be satisfied if they look nice, if they add charm to the built environment.

Darleen

Time for some giggles ... followed by belly laughs.

I'm still wiping my eyes and chuckling.

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