Free Speech For Me But Not For Thee

“I think that what Tucker says much of the time is completely reprehensible and divorced from reality,” Lemon said, “but he has a right to be in a space and not be accosted and not be ambushed by anyone.”

—Don Lemon, CNN anchor, quoted by Sarah Polus, “Don Lemon defends Tucker Carlson amid confrontation video.TheHill.com, July 27, 2021.

Not the only news anchor with this opinion, apparently. I’ll point out the obvious. If there is no forum where you are held to account, where you have to respond, seriously, to questions and criticism, then you’ve left with only the court of public opinion and the ambush interview or comment. Don’t like it? Select a different outlet to respond in good faith to criticism or pursue another line of work.

It reminds me of a quote I once read by David Lee Roth. His interviewer asked him how he handles fame since so many celebrities have trouble with it. He said, roughly, “Oh, honey, that’s the job.”

Jumbo

“Jumbo (Android, iOS) isn’t a social media app replacement as such, but it can help you lock down the social networks that you’re already signed up for (and where your friends will already be). At the moment it comprehensively covers Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, and though some of its features require a subscription, you do get a lot for free.

One of the best features that Jumbo brings to the table is auto-deleting your posts after a certain amount of time has elapsed, so you’re never leaving behind a long digital trail. It’ll also advise you on ways in which you can limit your exposure and increase your privacy on the apps you’ve got connected (by turning off face recognition or photo tags, for instance).

—David Nield, “6 Privacy-Focused Alternatives to the Apps You Use Every Day.” Wired. December 13, 2020.

Social Chronophage

“The social industry doesn’t just eat our time with endless stimulus and algorithmic scrolling; it eats our time by creating and promoting people who exist only to be explained to, people to whom the world has been created anew every morning, people for whom every settled sociological, scientific, and political argument of modernity must be rehashed, rewritten, and re-accounted, this time with their participation.

These people, with their just-asking questions and vapid open letters, are dullards and bores, pettifoggers and casuists, cowards and dissemblers, time-wasters of the worst sort…Time is not infinite. None of us can afford to spend what is left of it dallying with the stupid and bland.”

—Max Read, “Going Postal.” Book Forum. Sept/Oct/Nov 2020.

Review of Richard Seymour’s The Twittering Machine, which is worth reading in its own right.

h/t Velcro City Tourist Board.