Wednesday, March 07, 2018

About NME

The NME has announced it is closing its print edition and becoming a digital-only product. The end of an era, if that era hadn’t ended in about 2002 (or 1995 or 1981 or pick the year you finally gave up and grew up).

PS: That said, a glance at the cover wrap of that last issue perhaps unwittingly explains what’s really gone wrong for print media:

PPS: And inside, confirmation of exactly how bland and impotent a beast the NME has become, when even the mildest swear is asterisked into oblivion:

Monday, March 05, 2018

About Duchamp and Cage

Lovely write-up in Hyperallergic of the Duchamp/Cage chess match, 50 years ago today.
While all artists are not chess players, all chess players are artists.

Tuesday, February 27, 2018

About posthumanism (again)

The career paths that remain free from threats by encroaching technology seem to be vanishing by the day. Now, fashion models join the list, as Dolce & Gabbana replaces the skinny, glum-looking ladies with drones.

PS: On similar lines, the tale of Shudu Gram, the model who doesn’t exist.

Saturday, February 24, 2018

Thursday, February 22, 2018

About empathy

President Trump’s notes for his meeting yesterday with high school students and parents to discuss school shootings. Picture by Carolyn Koster/AP.

Wednesday, February 21, 2018

About sensitivity

An interesting article from the Chicago Tribune about the trend for publishers and authors to hire “sensitivity readers” to scan texts for That Which May Offend. A couple of excerpts:
Clayton [one of the readers], who is black, sees her role as a vital one. “Books for me are supposed to be vehicles for pleasure, they're supposed to be escapist and fun,” she says. They're not supposed to be a place where readers “encounter harmful versions” and stereotypes of people like them.
Vehicles for pleasure? Escapist and fun? Why would you pay for your book to be read by someone who has such a reductive view of what reading is for? Then author Kate Messner opines:
I wouldn’t dream of sending those books out into the world without getting help to make sure I’m representing those issues in a way that’s realistic and sensitive.
Realistic and sensitive? If you had to make a choice between the two, Kate, which would you pick?

Sunday, February 18, 2018

About education

Education secretary Damian Hinds on proposals for variation in tuition fees between courses:
What we need to look at is the different aspects of pricing — the cost that it is to put on the course, the value that it is to the student and also the value to our society as a whole and to our economy for the future.
“Value.” Such an interesting word.