Tag Archives | Media

Notes from ‘Death Bird’ #1: Political alchemy and modern fakery

Rennett Stowe (CC BY 2.0)

Rennett Stowe (CC BY 2.0)

Frustration has its causes in the media-machine of last words. There are too many sources, too many crass and obvious newsrooms, and too many of the whirling sandstorms of ignorant opinions and plutocratic delivery-boys. Ah, the Poetry of Unlimited Bad Choice – who should one trust when everyone’s crooked and on the take? It seems an obvious thing to say – it’s been repeated ad nauseam – but most of it is propaganda, agenda or illusion; bullshit that gets churned up and out at such frequency and speed that saturation is inevitable. The stink ends up on everything, you can taste it in the back of your throat. God damn it… nothing is free from the contamination.

Wading through the sludge of the Media Machine leaves one feeling hollowed out, overused. The sheer bulk of information and data inflicts a drastic overstimulation of the cerebrum.… Read the rest

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More than 2,800 people are dead in Yemen – so why aren’t we outraged?

In the summer of 2014, our screens were inundated with videos of the carnage from the streets of Gaza. The European media was outraged, and the sense of moral urgency was amplified across social media. Similar outrage greeted the destruction of UNESCO heritage sites in both Iraq and Syria with the condemnation of Islamic State’s barbarism reaching a crescendo when it overtook Syria’s majestic city of Palmyra.

Compare this coverage to the almost universal silence on the ongoing war in Yemen, which is largely absent from our TV screens, Facebook and Twitter trending topics sections and the front pages of broadsheet papers.

Admittedly, the Yemen conflict is a complicated matter, where the Saudi “bad guys” in the northern half of the country are looked upon as potential saviours in the southern half. The war includes a number of factions, and provides no easy narratives for the casual news watcher to follow.… Read the rest

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Tech Time Warp of the Week: Before WIRED, There Was the Eccentric Mondo 2000

mondologo

One friend of disinformation, Klint “Klintron” Finley who writes for a legendary tech mag (Wired) writes about another, Ken “RU Sirius” Goffman, the editor of its precursor, Mondo 2000:

When WIRED launched in 1993, few people had seen anything like it. Unlike other computer magazines, it focused on people instead of machines. It was colorful—psychedelic even—at a time when computers were beige boxes made by and for the sort of people that Dilbert was about. But WIRED wasn’t totally alone.

Before WIRED, there was Mondo 2000, a magazine that fused counterculture and technology together into a surreal glossy magazine that first appeared on newsstands in 1989. A typical issue would cover everything from DIY micro-satellites to smart drugs to weird bands like The Residents.

“Mondo 2000 is here to cover the leading edge in hyperculture,” an introduction by editor Ken “R.U. Sirius” Goffman and publisher Allison “Queen Mu” Kennedy announced in the first issue.

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The Force Which Shapes The World

download4

Linda and Morris Tannehill via Not Being Governed:

But a discussion of how government could be dismantled and how free men could then build a laissez-faire society out of the pieces still doesn’t answer the question, “How do we get there?” Politicians are politicians because they enjoy wielding power over others and being honored for their “high positions.” Power and plaudits are the politician’s life, and a true politician will fight to the death (your death) if he thinks it will help him hold on to them. Even the gray, faceless bureaucrats cling to their little bits of power with the desperate tenacity of a multitude of leaches, each squirming and fighting to hold and increase his area of domination. How can we successfully oppose this vast, cancerous power structure? Where can we find a force strong enough to attack, undermine, and finally destroy its power?

Some people, gazing up at the fearsome might of the American Leviathan, have decided that our only hope lies in an eventual armed revolution.

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Black Metal Presidential Logos are Totally, um, Metal!

The 2016 election nightmare has begun and if there’s anything more boring than the candidates themselves, it’s their phony Americana inspired Mad Men reject logos. I’m yawning just thinking about them.

Artist Christophe Szpajdel has done us a solid and made them less boring. With metal.

Hellary

Hellary

Isn't Jeb Bush the lead singer for Armored Saint?

Isn’t Jeb Bush the lead singer for Armored Saint?

Totally metal, yet still a hillbilly. Go figure.

Totally metal, yet still a hillbilly. Go figure.

Almost as lame as the dead poodle he calls 'hair'. Almost.

Almost as lame as the dead poodle he calls ‘hair’. Almost.

Don't mess with Texas. Because metal beasts.

Don’t mess with Texas. Because metal beasts.

Ambigram or bad tattoo? You decide.

Ambigram or bad tattoo? You decide.

Bernie's a lot things, but he's totally NOT metal. Or electable. Or a socialist. Just sayin'.

Bernie’s a lot things, but he’s totally NOT metal. Or electable. Or a socialist. Just sayin’.

This scary metal elephant (listen- Mastodon is NOT metal anymore.) is pretty bitchin', unlike the Donald.

This scary metal elephant (listen- Mastodon is NOT metal anymore.) is pretty bitchin’, unlike the Donald.

You can check out more HERE. Rock! \m/

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First robot wedding: The bride wore white and the groom wore out his batteries

Scott Pakulski (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Scott Pakulski (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

Lydia Willgress via Daily Mail Online:

Two robots have tied the knot in Japan in what is thought to be the first wedding of its kind in the world.

Frois, the groom, and bride Yukirin walked the aisle, wore traditional outfits and even carried out a ‘wedding kiss’ at the event in Tokyo on Saturday.

Special invitations were made, featuring a picture of the two robots inset in a heart, and the 100-strong congregation included a range of smaller robotic models.

After the ceremony the couple even managed to ‘cut a cake’ before an automated orchestra performed a song for the equivalent of their first dance.

The event was organised by Maywa Denki, which produces electronic accessories and designed the groom Frois.

Continue reading.

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Cell Phone Radiation Is Probably Cooking Your Brain and Balls (and What You Can Do About It)

mobilize

Via Midwest Real

Kevin Kunze is the filmmaker behind Mobilize, an investigative documentary exploring the negative long-term health effects of cell phone radiation. The film examines recent scientific research, follows national legislative efforts, and exposes the influence that technology companies have on public health.

ITUNES  STITCHER DOWNLOAD

This is an unfortunate rabbit hole my friends, because I love me some technology. I’m constantly ranting about it, tweeting about it, or manipulating it in some manner. It’s certainly not lost on me that without it, this show and this site wouldn’t even exist in the first place. I’ll even go out on a limb and say that technology and the insatiable, uniquely human, desire to continually lift our circumstances is intimately intertwined with the destiny of mankind (if that’s a thing).

As Terence McKenna put it:

“Technology is the real skin of our species… We take in matter that has a low degree of organization; we put it through mental filters, and we extrude jewelry, gospels, space shuttles.

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Who owns your face?

Screen shot via.

Screen shot via.

Jeff John Roberts via Fortune:

In a fateful moment for privacy, Facebook’s “Moments” uses facial recognition to expose where people went and who they were with.

What a bad week for privacy. Consumer watchdogs gave up on government talks over facial recognition software after industry groups appeared to reject even basic restrictions on face-scanning. Meanwhile, Facebook rolled out a new service called “Moments” that expands the use of the company’s powerful “faceprint” technology.

This doesn’t mean the privacy apocalypse is upon us; for now least, the Facebook “Moments” tool is just one more creepy-but-useful social media innovation. But if loss of liberty happens gradually, June of 2015 could be a watershed we look back on with regret. It marks a time when we took new steps towards accepting the use of our very faces as a universal ID card – without deciding on the rules for using it.

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AI: Coming to a Sexbot Near You

Robotica

Aaron Krumens Via Extreme Tech:

While the cynical among us knew it was only a matter of time before the rise of the sexbots, the partnering of RealDoll — maker of high end sex mannequins — with Hanson Robotics has moved that eventuality one step closer to reality.

This new venture has been dubbed Realbotix by founder and CEO Matt McMullen of RealDoll. The goal is to endow the RealDoll line of sex figurines with some basic animation, transforming them from immobile mannequins to full on androids that can follow commands and verbally respond to the user. This advanced line of sex dolls will come equipped with animatronic heads, capable of blinking and opening their mouths suggestively. The dolls will reportedly also make use of a mobile app and a virtual reality headset, whereby the physical doll provides haptic feedback for interactions taking place within the virtual reality console.

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Power of the media’s impact on medicine use revealed

The Catalyst Team

The Catalyst Team

For non-Australians (like myself), here’s a quick overview of the science program, Catalyst.

University of Sydney via EurekAlert:

More than 60,000 Australians are estimated to have reduced or discontinued their use of prescribed cholesterol-lowering statin medications following the airing of a two-part series critical of statins by ABC TV’s science program, Catalyst, a University of Sydney study reveals in the latest Medical Journal of Australia.

The analysis of the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme medication records of 191,000 people revealed that there was an immediate impact after Catalyst was aired in October 2013, with 14,000 fewer people dispensed statins per week than expected.

“In the eight months following the Catalyst broadcast, an estimated 60,897 fewer people had statins dispensed than expected. If patients continue to avoid statins over the next five years, this could result in between 1,522 and 2,900 preventable, and potentially fatal, heart attacks and strokes,” the authors report.

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