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Let's just hang out and read some things

First, I really appreciated an article that [personal profile] conuly just posted, entitled Why did fans flee LiveJournal, and where will they go after Tumblr?. I'll admit that I clicked the article link because I have been a longtime LJ user, and was curious about the ebb and flow of different social media forums. That said, it was useful to read about why a more specific user base ("fans") wound up at LJ, and why that user base moved on, so as to think some more about different kinds of uses of this shared space we call the internet. It was particularly interesting to learn about Archive of Our Own, and how women learned to code by working on it. I also appreciated how site users who identify as "fans" use sites as forums for creative expression.

Then I turned around and read The problem with #deleteBookOfFace (also posted by C). The two articles seem linked, to me, because they're both about this conversation on how we interact with each other online, just now with more commerce and advertising mixed in. I wonder if I would be more satisfied with the website of Social Media Brand F if I could pay an annual use fee and have more clear, direct control over structure and function (not that they're in any kind of position to do any sort of restructuring in such a fashion, heh). Hmm.

I don't have any conclusions to offer from these musings.

So instead, let's read two things about insects.

I appreciate this article about how eating insects is an American tradition, which talks about how this historical culinary practice was discouraged by European settlers because it was taken as evidence of cultural inferiority. Ugh, thanksnothanks, awful historic white people, for your destruction of interesting culinary traditions. I especially like the idea of the insect fruitcakes - old-fashioned granola bar precursors!

Meanwhile, this article about the (completely legal) sale of a Wallace's Giant Bee specimen for $9000 made me depressed, but it's still important to read about.

I also eventually became grateful for someone's rediscovery of a 2015 article about Whale Fall, which I subsequently saw shared on several social media platforms. Was it the inspiration for Ursula V's Hugo speech? Regardless, while a lot of the article is depressing, it's beautifully and poetically written.

The whale fall article reminds me of reading recently about short-chain fluorochemicals, which have been developed in recent years to replace longer-chain fluorochemicals. After being developed and put into widespread use, the longer-chain fluorochemicals were subsequently shown to bioaccumulate and have harmful effects on humans and wildlife. A problem is that our social/political/bureaucratic processes aren't structured very well to test for these kinds of harmful effects before these kinds of compounds get into manufactured goods and general use. And everything always winds up in waterways and then the ocean.

Well, back to work.

This entry was originally posted at https://rebeccmeister.dreamwidth.org/1218073.html. Please comment there using OpenID.

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