(Source: o-t-6, via murketing)
Parties are an evil inherent in free governments; but they do not have the same character and the same instincts in all periods of time.
There are periods of time when nations feel tormented by such great ills that the idea of a total change in their political constitution occurs to their mind. There are other periods when the malaise is even more profound and when the social state itself is compromised. That is the time of great revolutions and great parties.
Between these centuries of disorders and miseries, you find others when societies are at rest and when the human race seems to catch its breath. In truth, that is still only outward appearance. The march of time does not stop for peoples any more than for men; both advance each day toward an unknown future; and when we believe them stationary, it is because their movements escape us. They are men who are walking; to those who are running, they seem immobile.
Similar to the hand that marks the hours; everyone can tell the path it has already followed, but the hand must be watched for a long time to discover that it is moving.
Be that as it may, there are periods when the changes that take place in the political constitution and social state of peoples are so slow and so imperceptible, that men think they have arrived at a final state; the human mind then believes itself firmly seated on certain foundations and does not look beyond a certain horizon.
This is the time of intrigues and of small parties.
What I call great political parties are those that are attached to principles more than to their consequences, to generalities and not to particular cases, to ideas and not to men. In general, these parties have more noble traits, more generous passions, more real convictions, a more candid and bold appearance than the others. Here, particular interest, which always plays the greatest role in political passions, hides more cleverly behind the veil of public interest; sometimes it even manages to hide from the view of those whom it arouses and brings into action.
Small parties, on the contrary, are generally without political faith. Since they do not feel elevated and sustained by great objectives, their character is stamped by an egoism that occurs openly in each of their acts. They get worked up from a cold start; their language is violent, but their course is timid and uncertain. The means they use are miserable, like the very end that they propose. That is why, when a time of calm follows a violent revolution, great men seem suddenly to disappear and souls withdraw into themselves.
Great parties turn society upside down; small ones trouble it; the ones tear it apart and the others deprave it. Both have a common trait, however: to reach their ends, they hardly ever use means that conscience approves completely. There are honest men in nearly all parties, but it can be said that no party should be called an honest man. The first sometimes save society by shaking it up; the second always disturb it to no profit. — Alexis de Tocqueville on political parties. I’m generally suspicious of such generalizations, but thought it was an interesting characterization. Says more about Tocqueville than about America, I suppose.
we must avoid the simple metaphors of demasking, of throwing away the veils which are supposed to hide the naked reality.
We can see why Lacan … distances himself from the liberating gesture of saying finally that “the emperor has no clothes”. — Zizek, on how one can never fully see things through, because behind appearances are always only more appearances and no essence (via jujutsu-with-zizek)
One loves ultimately one’s desires, not the thing desired. — Friedrich Nietzsche, from Beyond Good and Evil (via violentwavesofemotion)
(Source: bringonyourwildbeasts, via alterities)
The Lacanian subject is quite literally a void or emptiness.
Symptoms are perpetual (failed) attempts to fill that a priori hole.
the … subject is the ruin of every identity or attempt to ultimately say what we are.
- Levi Bryant
The emptiness we occupy.
Sneak peek of Susan Bernofsky’s upcoming translation of Kafka’s The Metamorphosis!
Japanese Poster: Local World. Akaoni Design. 2013
“The self-tormenting melancholia
which is without doubt enjoyable,
signifies … a satisfaction of trends of
sadism and hate which relate to an
object, and which have been turned
around upon the subject’s own self”
Tasneem Raja believes the hashtag will make a comeback, albeit in a slightly different register.
Thankfully, the days of broad, generic callouts — #china, #politics, #food — from serious media sites seem to be behind us. But the use of micro-targeted hashtags that land with big impact is fascinating, and we’re going to see a lot more of these in 2014. #bringiton
This actually has been happening for quite some time, although this might be the first time someone has paid attention to the phenomenon.
Jason Kottke, one the early adopters of the blogging format, thinks the medium is dead, or to specifically as a catch-all term it is dead. And with this perhaps the “stream” will wane too.
So, R.I.P. The Blog, 1997-2013. But this isn’t cause for lament. The Stream might be on the wane but still it dominates. All media on the web and in mobile apps has blog DNA in it and will continue to for a long while. Over the past 16 years, the blog format has evolved, had social grafted onto it, and mutated into Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest and those new species have now taken over.
Interestingly, Jason links to an article by Alexis Madrigal who talks more about the changes to the “stream”.
Ed O’Keefe believes a number of new media formats will arise - basically using vine and similar apps to deliver news. Possible, remains to be seen.
Cory Haik thinks we’ll see more of anticipatory news - basically Google Now on steroids. Interesting to figure out, what can an aggregator learn from this?
Notes on Nieman Labs’ predictions about 2014.
Michael Schudson says a newspaper conveys more than just stories -
I hope, someone will also notice that journalism is neither all about data nor all about stories. It is also “Heavy rain expected tomorrow” or “Mandela dead at 95″ — the former related to data but not data, the latter implying a story (as every obituary does, as every life does) but not a story. It is a news “item,” and very useful to millions of people as advice, as notice, as guidance, as admonition, as recipe — but not a story.
Allen Tan is interested in ambient interfaces that provides news at a quick glance from multiple devices
Ambient interfaces will begin to appear as data trickles into watches, televisions, clocks, cars — but with new affordances. While smartphones and tablets are deeply personal and interactive, these new devices sit in communal space, in the background: How do you design something that accepts minimal input but is aware of its environment? What does glanceable information look like?
Will story extracts (like that news bot) be helpful with these new devices?
Jennifer Brandel… ok.. that’s a lot of buzzwords, but this quote is interesting — “There will not actually be “an app for that” — instead, a responsive website.”
Philip Bump believes that reporters will find it easier to identify authentic witnesses to events in 2014 based on location data embedded in to social media tools.
But phones already have tools to trigger reminders or alerts based on location, something IFTTT is expanding with proximity triggers, using your phone’s location to create a rudimentary sort of RFID-simulator. Understanding the phone as a location-based tool isn’t insignificant. Get smart developers expanding how that understanding is applied, and suddenly you have an ad hoc witness verification system. Geolocated tweets. More Instagrams. An instantaneously identifiable and near-instantaneously confirmable pool of witnesses.
Proximity triggers is interesting.
Maria Bustillos on the conversations about news that lets interest groups coalesce around topics.
Mandy Brown wants a better experience for all users, including those on older devices.
That is, in our enthusiasm for expanding what we can do on the web, let’s not forget what makes it better than other mediums: the potential to reach anyone, anywhere, regardless of their abilities or wealth. Our designs cannot be beautiful if they are not also universal — crafted to reach a maximum variety of people.
Adrienne LaFrance writes about how we should ditch old stereotypical beats for more ‘fluid’ beats.
This new structure better lends itself to high-impact reporting. A reporter who covers “transparency” instead of just “media” or just “campaign finance,” for example, is poised to find connections and patterns that exist in the world but otherwise aren’t typically reported — or even identified. That reporter is then well positioned to be a trusted guide on any number of stories related to transparency issues.
This is a concept already in use by Quarts (qz.com), and possibly emerging in other sources like medium.com.
Sarah Marshall thinks “News sites will find new ways to use social media to surface stories from the archives and extend the lifecycle of content.” I’ve already seen sites like LRB use the same strategy, since they have really good old content. Can this possibly be used in an aggregator?
Katie Zhu hopes that sites/apps will provide news contextually based on what we are doing or where we are:
The bottom line is this: We’ve always listened to our readers. But readers don’t necessarily know what they want. Using a phone’s gyroscope and accelerometer, we can gather realtime data about how people are using their device at a given point in time — we know if they are walking or lying down, we know the weather and their location — and use all this knowledge to decide when to serve what content to readers and through what medium.
Here’s the tablet news app I’m hoping for in 2014: something that detects when I’m lying down in bed (it knows my device orientation and, using the ambient light sensor, can detect it’s dark) and serves me the sort of video content that I never have time to watch during the day.
It will be interesting to watch how this will be used.
Lauren Rabaino wants contextualization, and news streams to be more like ‘stories’ - away from individual articles to overarching narrative.
Events don’t happen on 24-hour news cycles, and the most important of those events can’t be captured in 2,000-word stories. But that’s how we publish, because that’s how newspapers and daily broadcasts are designed. Topics that impact our lives have winding histories, key players over time, topical shifts that are important to understanding the whole story. They don’t really start over every day with a new angle, as we’d force readers to believe. We’re limiting the opportunity for our readers to understand all the intersecting impacts by reducing that important context into a few paragraphs of background on each new development we write about.
This also, sort of (or maybe could) tie in with the previous idea of “obsessions” and ‘fluid beats’. Away from set topics, to emerging topics, with more contextual information.
New (politically correct) forms of class segregation. (at Nasandhura Palace Hotel)
Protest Smoke - because all the zealots have a free license to lecture smokers. You & your health for fucks sake. Go suck on a car exhaust if you’re worried about passive smoke.
A perfect blue day (at Raalhugandu)