petej + emotion   112

Dreams of a No-Deal Nation | Red Pepper
Just like the original vote to Leave, the strength of the ‘no deal’ story is not its facts but its feelings, not its statistics but its sentiments. What is the story of ‘no deal nation’? No deal nation is strong, steeled for the disruption of ‘no deal’. It is powerful to the point of petulance, defiant of the demands from Brussels. But above all, it is in control, unchained from European rules, whether a customs union or the backstop. It might be materially bad, but it damn well feels good. It offers hope of a future of pride and dignity. Fighting the idea of no deal nation with facts will not work: ‘hope that is seen is not hope: for who hopes for what he sees?’

The more that ‘no deal’ demands sacrifice, the more its popularity will grow: the higher the price, the greater the prize. No deal nation is bolstered by a fuzzy reading of history, self-soothing with stories of its past. It reassures itself: the last time we stood alone, Britain emerged in triumph and the Europeans in tragedy; we prospered before 1972 and will do so again. Do not imagine that the reality of a ‘no deal’ Brexit will change this: confirmation bias will kick in. The Brexit faithful will conclude that they have been punished by devious elites who never wanted to Leave and by European opponents who never had our interests at heart. Rather than undermining Brexit, the ‘no deal’ disaster would merely confirm their suspicion they were right to vote to Leave.
UK  EU  Brexit  noDeal  BBCQT  nationalism  AndersonBenedict  storytelling  deindustrialisation  dignity  emotion  defiance  sacrifice  delusion  Lexit  stateAid  politics  dctagged  dc:creator=KibasiTom 
january 2019 by petej
Where next? How to cope with Brexit uncertainty | Books | The Guardian
The result of the referendum was a transfer of angry feelings from many leavers, those who had been economically and socially squeezed, to remainers. There was no escaping the leavers’ fury. We have all had to see the country as broken; to give up the delusion that everyone was OK. Manifestly people weren’t. The question is how to absorb and reflect on the dispossession and rage. The Brexit vote said to remainers: “You will no longer have it your way. You are going to feel threatened as we have felt threatened. You can lose your hope as we lost ours.”
UK  Brexit  referendum  anger  fear  uncertainty  psychology  emotion  division  polarisation  psychotherapy 
january 2019 by petej
The fear that lies behind aggressive masculinity | George Monbiot | Opinion | The Guardian
The age-old mistake, which has stunted countless lives, is the assumption that because physical hardship in childhood makes you physically tough, emotional hardship must make you emotionally tough. It does the opposite. It implants a vulnerability that can require a lifetime of love and therapy to repair and that, untreated, leads to an escalating series of destructive behaviours. Emotionally damaged men all too often rip apart their own lives, and those of their partners and children. I see both physical fitness and emotional strength as virtues, but they are acquired by entirely different means.
masculinity  identity  aggression  fear  decline  emotion  mentalHealth  dctagged  dc:creator=MonbiotGeorge 
january 2019 by petej
Sad by design | Eurozine
Sadness expresses the growing gap between the self-image of a perceived social status and the actual precarious reality. The temporary dip, described here under the code name ‘sadness’, can best be understood as a mirror phenomenon of the self-promotion machine that constructs the links for us. The mental state is so pervasive, the merging of social media with the self so totalizing, that we see the sadness complex as a manifestation of an ‘anti-self’ stage that we slip into and then walk away from. The anti-climax called sadness travels with the smart phone, it’s everywhere.
socialMedia  mentalHealth  identity  emotion  sadness  melancholy  design  anxiety  compulsion  engagement  manipulation 
january 2019 by petej
The Bannon-Frum Munk Debate: What Really Happened - The Atlantic
The story ends, then, in a great irony. Integral to the liberal project, again in the broad sense of the word liberal, is confidence in the power of reason. Words and arguments can overbear ignorance and prejudice. Over the long term, words and arguments can even overcome oppression and violence. That’s why liberals in the broad sense are so uniquely horrified by official lying: How can reason prevail unless words connect to reality? How can we argue against people who will spread fictions, if serviceable to them, without a qualm?

Illiberals and anti-liberals, on the other hand, appreciate the dark energy of human irrationality—not merely as a fact of our nature to be negotiated, but as a potent political resource. People do not think; they feel. They do not believe what is true; they regard as true that which they wish to believe. A lie that affirms us will gain more credence than a truth that challenges us. That’s the foundational insight on which Trump built his business career. It’s the insight on which Trump’s supporters built first their campaign for president and now their presidency itself.
USA  politics  BannonStephen  populism  misinformation  manipulation  emotion  rationality  reason  liberalism  FrumDavid  debate 
november 2018 by petej
How feelings took over the world | Culture | The Guardian
These two distinctions – between mind and body, and war and peace – now appear to have lost credibility altogether, with the result that we experience conflict intruding into everyday life with increasing regularity. Since the 1990s, rapid advances in neuroscience have elevated the brain over the mind as the main way by which we understand ourselves, demonstrating the importance of emotion and physiology to all decision making. Meanwhile, new forms of violence have emerged, in which states are attacked by non-state groups (such as Islamic State), interstate conflicts are fought using nonmilitary means (such as cyberwarfare), and the distinction between policing and military intervention becomes blurred. Our condition is one of nervous states, with individuals and governments existing in a state of constant and heightened alertness, relying increasingly on feeling rather than fact.

When reason itself is in peril, there is an understandable instinct to try to revive or rescue something from the past. It has become a cliche to celebrate the rugged individualism, cold rationality and truth-seeking courage of the scientific pioneers. But in our current age, when intelligence and calculation are performed faster and more accurately by machines than by people, an alternative ideal is needed. Perhaps the great virtue of the scientific method is not that it is smart (which is now an attribute of phones, cities and fridges) but that it is slow and careful. Maybe it is not more intelligence that we need right now, but less speed and more care, both in our thinking and our feeling. After all, emotions (including anger) can be eminently reasonable, if they are granted the time to be articulated and heard. Conversely, advanced intelligence can be entirely unreasonable, when it moves at such speed as to defy any possibility of dialogue.
emotion  rationality  OxfordCircus  panic  misinformation  socialMedia  fear  instinct  rumours  virality  Germany  refugees  Facebook  populism  psychology  violence  policing  militarisation  terrorism  experts  trust  elites  resentment  inequality  exclusion  disenfranchisement  dctagged  dc:creator=DaviesWill 
september 2018 by petej
Designing Emotion: How Facebook Affordances Give Us The Blues - Cyborgology
“It’s how you use it” is wholly unsatisfying, philosophically misguided, and a total corporate cop-out that places disproportionate responsibility on individual users while ignoring the politics and power of design. It’s also a strangely projective conclusion to what began as a reflexive internal examination of technological effects.

If the trendy onslaught of new materialism has taught us anything, it’s that things are not just objects of use, but have meaningful shaping capacities. That objects are efficacious isn’t a new idea, nor is it niche. Within media studies, we can look to Marshall McLuhan who, 50-plus years ago, established quite succinctly that the medium is the message. From STS, we can look to Actor Network Theory (ANT), through which Bruno Latour clarified that while guns don’t kill people on their own, the technology of the gun is integral to violence.
Facebook  socialMedia  psychology  design  emotion  behaviour  algorithms  manipulation  affordances  private  public  dctagged  dc:creator=DavisJenny 
december 2017 by petej
John Lanchester reviews ‘The Attention Merchants’ by Tim Wu, ‘Chaos Monkeys’ by Antonio García Martínez and ‘Move Fast and Break Things’ by Jonathan Taplin · LRB 17 August 2017
"What this means is that even more than it is in the advertising business, Facebook is in the surveillance business. Facebook, in fact, is the biggest surveillance-based enterprise in the history of mankind. It knows far, far more about you than the most intrusive government has ever known about its citizens. It’s amazing that people haven’t really understood this about the company. I’ve spent time thinking about Facebook, and the thing I keep coming back to is that its users don’t realise what it is the company does. What Facebook does is watch you, and then use what it knows about you and your behaviour to sell ads. I’m not sure there has ever been a more complete disconnect between what a company says it does – ‘connect’, ‘build communities’ – and the commercial reality. Note that the company’s knowledge about its users isn’t used merely to target ads but to shape the flow of news to them. Since there is so much content posted on the site, the algorithms used to filter and direct that content are the thing that determines what you see: people think their news feed is largely to do with their friends and interests, and it sort of is, with the crucial proviso that it is their friends and interests as mediated by the commercial interests of Facebook. Your eyes are directed towards the place where they are most valuable for Facebook."

"Here in the rich world, the focus is more on monetisation, and it’s in this area that I have to admit something which is probably already apparent. I am scared of Facebook. The company’s ambition, its ruthlessness, and its lack of a moral compass scare me. It goes back to that moment of its creation, Zuckerberg at his keyboard after a few drinks creating a website to compare people’s appearance, not for any real reason other than that he was able to do it. That’s the crucial thing about Facebook, the main thing which isn’t understood about its motivation: it does things because it can. Zuckerberg knows how to do something, and other people don’t, so he does it. Motivation of that type doesn’t work in the Hollywood version of life, so Aaron Sorkin had to give Zuck a motive to do with social aspiration and rejection. But that’s wrong, completely wrong. He isn’t motivated by that kind of garden-variety psychology. He does this because he can, and justifications about ‘connection’ and ‘community’ are ex post facto rationalisations. The drive is simpler and more basic. That’s why the impulse to growth has been so fundamental to the company, which is in many respects more like a virus than it is like a business. Grow and multiply and monetise. Why? There is no why. Because.

Automation and artificial intelligence are going to have a big impact in all kinds of worlds. These technologies are new and real and they are coming soon. Facebook is deeply interested in these trends. We don’t know where this is going, we don’t know what the social costs and consequences will be, we don’t know what will be the next area of life to be hollowed out, the next business model to be destroyed, the next company to go the way of Polaroid or the next business to go the way of journalism or the next set of tools and techniques to become available to the people who used Facebook to manipulate the elections of 2016. We just don’t know what’s next, but we know it’s likely to be consequential, and that a big part will be played by the world’s biggest social network. On the evidence of Facebook’s actions so far, it’s impossible to face this prospect without unease."
Facebook  socialMedia  ZuckerbergMark  attention  business  psychology  ThielPeter  mimeticDesire  GiraudRene  filterBubble  identity  fakeNews  misinformation  Russia  TrumpDonald  advertising  surveillance  surveillanceCapitalism  businessModels  targeting  personalData  monetisation  tracking  Experian  creditCards  algorithms  auctions  Google  monopoly  duopoly  manipulation  emotion  happiness  mentalHealth  dctagged  dc:creator=LanchesterJohn  LRB 
august 2017 by petej
Politics doesn’t need a brick through the window, or civility. It needs basic fairness | Abi Wilkinson | Opinion | The Guardian
In the rush to condemn such toxic behaviour, however, I think a subtle distinction has been lost. Actions can certainly be morally unacceptable. In my opinion, emotions cannot. Really, it’s a manifestation of extreme privilege to insist that people engage with politics in a calm and emotionless way. The further you are from experiencing any negative effects of the policy you’re debating, the more cushioned and secure your social position, the easier it is to adhere to the Oxford Union norms of cool detachment and skilful argument.

MPs might only be human, but they also hold a power over the lives of 70 million fallible, vulnerable human beings. Telling people that they’re wrong to feel anger towards an individual who voted to restrict housing benefit and place them at risk of homelessness is patently absurd. Similarly, journalists hold an unusual level of social power that makes them a reasonable target of scrutiny. If we think social media discourse can influence behaviour, why would that not also be true of mainstream media?

The question isn’t about the level of anger that is acceptable, it’s about the forms of expression of that anger that should be condoned. Obviously, physical violence isn’t justified. Similarly, racism, sexism and other forms of prejudice don’t become more or less acceptable depending on the specific target of the slurs. What about other insults, though? Is it OK to describe a politician as “evil”, for instance, or is a blanket condemnation of an individual always toxic? Does it make a difference whether comments are addressed to politicians rather than made about them?
politics  emotion  anger  power  violence  insults  harassment  threats  dctagged  dc:creator=WilkinsonAbi 
july 2016 by petej
Facebook Reactions are not wow.
"Perhaps that means that reactions will end up meaning next to nothing. When you look at a recent post, you’ll see a count of the total number of Reactions and likes: the raw number of people who responded to your little joke or tortured confession. The sheer number of reactions is elevated above their emotional content. When you receive a crying symbol or a laughing one on a post, you may not even notice which of your friends has expressed sadness or delight. All that matters is how many people have recognized you."
socialMedia  Facebook  FacebookLike  reactions  emotion  communication  identity  digitalIdentity 
february 2016 by petej
Like This So I Know I'm Real | Hazlitt
"The Internet may be based around necessary indifference—to filter out content we don’t have the time or energy for, and even to throw up boundaries that prevent IRL from encroaching too much on web activity (an irony beyond belief, that one). But the basic, harsh truth of the Internet is that seeing and being seen remain the only ways to feel like you’re participating in the first place. We don’t exist because we will ourselves into being—we exist because others deign to notice. All we can do is try our best to strike a balance between saying what needs to be said and caring too much about what others will “like”—which is to say, whether they “like” (and like) us at all."
Facebook  FacebookLike  reactions  socialMedia  identity  digitalIdentity  performance  attention  emotion  indifference 
february 2016 by petej
"Can I help?" Emotional labour and precarity | openDemocracy
"Post-crash, the psychological power play between managers and the managed is more fraught than ever, with far more at stake. But employees, especially women, are no longer allowed to separate their working life from their personal life. Much of work now relies on emotional performance and projecting the impression that your working self is your whole self - the long term implications for women are yet to be seen."
work  labour  jobs  zeroHours  precarity  employment  affectiveLabour  emotionalLabour  affect  emotion 
june 2015 by petej
New Left Project | Where is the Anti-War Movement?
"Long-term, the State of Iraq is probably finished. If ISIS wins, an Islamic state will be established dividing what is now Iraq into a Kurdish north, an ISIS-ruled state in the centre and a southern Shi’ite entity. Or ISIS will be defeated by the Kurdish forces (the government’s forces seem unable to) who will establish an independent state, in which case Iraq and Syria will lose substantial territory and Turkey will have serious problems. The state system the intervention is trying to preserve, in other words, is probably dead anyway. What I’m trying to get at is, the specifics matter. Once you appreciate them, bombing starts to look like an implausible attempt to fix a complex political problem with a technological military solution."
ISIS  Iraq  Syria  military  intervention  politics  emotion  sentiment  Maliki  sectarianism  interview  dctagged  dc:contributor=SeymourRichard 
september 2014 by petej
Facebook’s algorithm — why our assumptions are wrong, and our concerns are right // Culture Digitally
" does Facebook have an obligation to be fair-minded, or impartial, or representative, or exhaustive, in its selection of posts that address public concerns?
The answers to these questions, I believe, are not clear. And this goes well beyond one research study, it is a much broader question about Facebook’s responsibility. But the intense response to this research, on the part of press, academics, and Facebook users, should speak to them. Maybe we latch onto specific incidents like a research intervention, maybe we grab onto scary bogeymen like the NSA, maybe we get hooked on critical angles on the problem like the debate about “free labor,” maybe we lash out only when the opportunity is provided like when Facebook tries to use our posts as advertising. But together, I think these represent a deeper discomfort about an information environment where the content is ours but the selection is theirs."
Facebook  socialMedia  emotion  manipulation  filtering  algorithms  research  communication  trust  control  power  experiment 
july 2014 by petej
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