Saturday, November 20, 2021

Cooperative Social Media Were Liberating, Commercial Social Media Are Controlling

The original cooperative social media were liberating, social media operated as a conduit for advertising is controlling. At the very beginning of social media, APIs were open and there were multiple different clients providing different ways to experience the feeds. Problem is, as soon as you allow that, who is going to allow advertising in their feed? So user choice in clients was taken away.

Some of the old cooperative social media are still around. They work on donated resources or a free/pay system, but, similar to public television and radio, they do not have the reach of the advertising-controlled systems that run addiction algorithms. There are times when I suspect that the only way to run good social media is to run them as nonprofit cooperatives.

A few notes on the Rittenhouse Verdict

I don't think the Rittenhouse verdict is, in fact, a license to shoot protesters, even in Wisconsin. There was just enough ambiguity in the evidence against Rittenhouse (and a sympathetic judge and disgusting public attitudes to mental illness) to get him off. People who overtly go looking for trouble and them claim self-defense will probably be convicted. But, damn, people are going to be shot while the right-wing crazies figure this out.

There is, I think, a parallel with young suicide bombers; they are usually young men because they are vulnerable to manipulation by respected authorities. I expect we’ll see some died-in-the-wool white supremacists committing more acts of terrorism but by and large these will lead to convictions. But there will be a great and deliberate effort to persuade young people, especially young men, to provoke violence and escalate to lethal force.

We should outlaw open carry at protests and replace Judge Schroeder.