John Remmers’s review of The Witch Elm
3 of 5 stars to The Witch Elm by Tana French
from twitter
11 days ago
The Ethically Questionable Math Game Taking Over U.S. Schools
“The whole issue of having ads in a program like this is extremely troubling, and I think that viewing ads should not be a part of the school day,” Golin says. “It really indoctrinates kids into that virtual junk economy. I don’t think we should be teaching kids that the reason to learn is so you can buy a virtual reward for a character that doesn’t even really exist.”
education  games  exploitation 
7 weeks ago
Is this a turning point for publishing?
Publishing and advertising both need to bend back toward where they came from, and what works. I see hope for that in the news today. In Refinery29 Lays Off 10% of Staff as 2018 Revenue Comes Up Short, by Todd Spangler, (@xpangler) of Variety reports, Digital media company Refinery29, facing a 5% revenue shortfall for the year, is cutting 10% of its workforce, or about 40 employees.Digital media company Refinery29, facing a 5% revenue shortfall for the year, is cutting 10% of its workforce, or about 40 employees. Company co-founders and co-CEOs Philippe von Borries and Justin Stefano announced the cuts in an internal memo. “While our 2018 revenue will show continued year-over-year growth, we are projecting to come in approximately 5% short of our goal,” they wrote. As a result of its financial pressures, “we will be parting ways with approximately 10% of our workforce.” The latest cuts, first reported by the Wall Street Journal, come after New York-based Refinery29 laid off 34 employees in December 2017. Refinery29, which targets a millennial female audience, is going to cut back on content “with a short shelf life,” according to the execs. “While this type of content has been driving views, it has not yielded a great monetization strategy to justify the same level of continued investment.” Von Borries and Stefano wrote that they see sustainable growth in “premium, evergreen” programming, and plan to produce more video (both short- and long-form) on that front. I’ve boldfaced the important stuff. To explain why it’s important, dig this, in Refinery29 Lays Off 10% of Its Staff, Unifies Sales Team, by Melynda Fuller (@MGrace_Fuller) in MediaPost: As part of the restructuring, Refinery29 will also unify its sales teams into a unified Customer Solutions Group, in addition to a Sales Planning and Operations Group. This suggests Refinery29 is becoming a high-integrity publication, and not just another content pump and eyeball-shooting gallery for adtech (tracking-based advertising). (This Digiday piece by @maxwillens may suggest the same.) If that’s so, then there is new hope: not just for publishing online, but for the kind of brand advertising that actually sponsors publications, and which has worked for both brands and publications since forever in the offline world. By now pretty much all of online advertising is adtech, which doesn’t sponsor publishers. Instead it uses publishers to mark and track eyeballs wherever they might go. It does that by p
advertising  docsearls  adtech  branding 
october 2018
Thoughts on Peace in an Air Raid - Virginia Woolf
The searchlights, wavering across the flat, have picked up the plane now. From this window one can see a little silver insect turning and twisting in the light. The guns go pop pop pop. Then they cease. Probably the raider was brought down behind the hill. One of the pilots landed safe in a field near here the other day. He said to his captors, speaking fairly good English, “How glad I am that the fight is over!” Then an Englishman gave him a cigarette, and an Englishwoman made him a cup of tea. That would seem to show that if you can free the man from the machine, the seed does not fall upon altogether stony ground. The seed may be fertile.
virginia  woolf  war 
september 2018
Why Older People Have Always Trashed Young People – Youth, Now – Medium
We talk of children in terms of continuation. They carry on our traditions. They take our names. We delight in how they look like us, act like us, think like us. We want our kids to adopt our politics, our causes, our sense of meaning. In our children, we seek immortality.

But then they grow up, and we discover they’re not us. They are their own people. They’ll find their own politics, their own causes, their own sense of meaning. They’re more interested in the future than the past. They’ll know their parents’ names, of course, and probably their grandparents’ names, but perhaps not their great-grandparents’ names, and certainly not their great-great-grandparents’ names. Which means one day they’ll have children, and those children will have children, and our names will begin to be forgotten too. We will slip into nothingness, remembered by nobody, having left no recognizable impact.

That’s why we say these kids are no good. We can’t accept that life goes on without us. And instead of accepting it, we lay the blame for the whole state of affairs at the feet of the next generation.
culture  kids  generation-gap 
september 2018
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