• YouTube Discloses Percentage of Views That Go to Videos That Break its Rules - The New York Times

    It is the never-ending battle for YouTube.

    Every minute, YouTube is bombarded with videos that run afoul of its many guidelines, whether pornography or copyrighted material or violent extremism or dangerous misinformation. The company has refined its artificially intelligent computer systems in recent years to prevent most of these so-called violative videos from being uploaded to the site, but continues to come under scrutiny for its failure to curb the spread of dangerous content.

    In an effort to demonstrate its effectiveness in finding and removing rule-breaking videos, YouTube on Tuesday disclosed a new metric: the Violative View Rate. It is the percentage of total views on YouTube that come from videos that do not meet its guidelines before the videos are removed.

    In a blog post, YouTube said violative videos had accounted for 0.16 percent to 0.18 percent of all views on the platform in the fourth quarter of 2020. Or, put another way, out of every 10,000 views on YouTube, 16 to 18 were for content that broke YouTube’s rules and was eventually removed.

    While YouTube points to such reports as a form of accountability, the underlying data is based on YouTube’s own rulings for which videos violate its guidelines. If YouTube finds fewer videos to be violative — and therefore removes fewer of them — the percentage of violative video views may decrease. And none of the data is subject to an independent audit, although the company did not rule that out in the future.

    #YouTube #Culture_numérique #Auto-justification

  • The origins of ‘cancel’

    In the ’80s, a bad date inspired the musician Nile Rodgers to write a song. The track, “Your Love Is Canceled,” played on the idea of “canceling” a person for objectionable behavior, as Clyde McGrady writes in The Washington Post.

    The phrase stuck around: Rappers and reality TV stars used it, and its popularity soared once Black users on Twitter began saying it. On social media at the time, canceling someone or something “was more like changing the channel — and telling your friends and followers about it — than demanding that the TV execs take the program off the air,” McGrady writes. That has changed in recent years.

    Like a lot of Black slang, the term was appropriated by white people and has since deviated from its more innocuous origins. It became heavily politicized, applied to everything from public figures accused of sexual assault to the gender of Potato Head toys. It has followed a similar trajectory to the term “woke,” which Black activists popularized. That term has now evolved into a “single-word summation of leftist political ideology,” as Vox reports.

    Though these are some of the latest terms lifted from Black culture, they won’t be the last. “One of the biggest exports of American culture,” a linguistics professor told The Post, “is African-American language.”

    #Langage #Internet #Culture_numérique #Africains-américains

  • Émancipation et culture numérique - Attac France

    Par Hervé Le Crosnier

    Le terme de « culture numérique » est de plus en plus largement employé, souvent avec des sens différents, ou pour des contextes divers. Il sera envisagé ici comme une forme de « critique numérique », ce qui est loin de vouloir dire qu’on n’aime pas le numérique ou qu’on le rejette. Un « critique de cinéma » doit aimer le cinéma, quitte à refuser de parler de certains films qu’il juge désastreux. Un « critique de science », dans le sens que lui donne Jacques Testart, est quelqu’un qui croit en la science, mais refuse les dérives de la technoscience. L’approche proposée ici pour la culture numérique est celle d’un regard critique porté à la fois comme une réflexion sur les structures du numérique et une réflexivité sur le positionnement de chacun et chacune par rapport aux usages.


    1 - Définir la culture numérique
    2 – Internet et les mouvements sociaux
    3 – Des méga-corporations
    4 – Géopolitique du numérique
    5 – Comprendre pour agir
    6 – Penser l’écosystème numérique

    #Hervé_Le_Crosnier #Culture_numérique #Emancipation

  • What’s an NFT? And why are people suddenly spending millions on them? | CBC News

    At first blush, Sheldon Corey’s Twitter avatar, shown above, isn’t the sort of thing you’d think is worth $20,000 US. But to the Montreal investor, it’s worth every penny — if not more.

    The image is part of a collection of digital files known as CryptoPunks, which were first created more than three years ago.

    Created by a computer algorithm by software developer Larva Labs, there are about 10,000 of them out there. They were given away almost for free when they were created, but over time they have come to be very valuable to a certain subculture of people because they are among the first examples of an emerging type of digital investment known as non-fungible tokens or NFTs.

    While the image itself can be easily duplicated, what gives Corey’s NFT its value is that its digital ownership is unimpeachable. Logged on a digital ledger known as a blockchain that can’t be forged, the ownership can be publicly verified by anyone who cares to look, and Corey is its undisputed owner in perpetuity, or at least until he decides to sell it.

    The buyer, Miami-based art collector Pablo Rodriguez-Fraile, sold that NFT this week for almost 100 times what he paid, setting what’s believed to be a new record for NFTs at $6.6 million US. To him, he was buying a valuable piece of art akin to any other works from the great masters of their day, worthy of hanging in any museum you could name.

    “You can go in the Louvre and take a picture of the Mona Lisa and you can have it there, but it doesn’t have any value because it doesn’t have the provenance or the history of the work,” he said this week. “The reality here is that this is very, very valuable because of who is behind it.”

    Much like conventional art, the beauty of digital art may be in the eye of the beholder, but to Fernandez the real value of NFTs is in how they can certify ownership.

    She says it’s not surprising that the artistic community has jumped on board, because the conventional business model for artists and art lovers has its own set of problems. She cites the example of a New York art gallery that came upon previously undiscovered works by Mark Rothko, Jackson Pollock and others, and sold them to dozens of investors for more than $80 million.

    “The ink was right, the paper was right, people that know Rothko vouched for it,” she said.

    Despite the way the gallery owner obtained them being “a bit shady” and the verification of their status “super opaque”, customers couldn’t wait to get their hands on rare gems from such revered artists.

    There was only one problem: they were all fake, forgeries by a talented Chinese artist. “All these millionaires, including the owner of [auction company] Sotheby’s, got scammed because in the art world, provenance is created by a consensus,” she said.

    “With NFTs there is no question, it’s either there or it’s not. Period.”

    Huge waste of energy

    While Fernandez is one of many excited by the potential, the rise of NFTs has its fair share of critics who say it is just as much of a waste of energy as bitcoin is. Most NFT transactions at the moment are happening on the ethereum blockchain, and at current rates, the typical ethereum transaction currently uses about 50 kilowatt hours worth of energy to verify and process. That’s enough to power the typical Canadian home for about two days.

    A group of artists who don’t like the rise of NFTs have created an online calculator that gives a rough tabulation of the carbon footprint of any given NFT transaction. One French artist was horrified to discover the sale of one of his digital works used more energy than his studio would use over two entire years.

    She says it’s easy to think some of the assets are trivial, but so are a lot of physical collectibles. People collect high-end watches such as Rolex and save them for decades. “All that has no value to anyone who’s not into the subculture, but to whoever is in the subculture it is hugely valuable,” she said.

    #NFT #Idéologie_propriétaire #Culture_numérique #Spéculation #Blockchain

  • Le patron de Twitter Jack Dorsey vend son tout premier tweet aux enchères et il vaut déjà 2,5M$

    Jack Dorsey a publié son tout premier tweet le 21 mars 2006 et le met en vente quinze ans plus tard. © Capture d’écran Twitter

    Sur Internet, rien ne se perd et tout s’achète. Le fondateur et patron de Twitter, Jack Dorsey, vient de mettre en vente son tout premier tweet vieux de quinze ans, qui se trouve aussi être le premier tweet de l’histoire du réseau social. Vendredi dernier, il a partagé un lien vers le site de vente aux enchères Valuables pour permettre aux intéressés de faire une offre et d’acquérir le tweet historique « just setting up my twttr » ("je viens de créer mon compte twttr" en français).

    Mais comment Jack Dorsey peut-il vendre ces quelques mots, publiés sur Internet à la vue de tous et qui, en apparence, ne valent rien ? Le patron de Twitter surfe sur la vague des jetons NFT (pour « non-fungible token », des jetons non fongibles). Ces objets numériques se vendent des millions en ligne depuis plusieurs semaines. Il peut s’agir de n’importe quel contenu numérique : une vidéo, des œuvres d’art virtuelles, un album de musique, des personnages de jeux vidéos ou même un simple tweet.

    L’intérêt des NFT repose sur leur authenticité : ceux qui les acquièrent sont souvent des collectionneurs, et une blockchain garantit le caractère unique de chaque objet virtuel.

    #NFT #Idéologie_propriétaire #Culture_numérique #Spéculation #Blockchain

  • Memes for sale | TechCrunch

    The creator of the Nyan Cat, Chris Torres, has organized an informal collection of meme originators — the creators or original popularizers of meme images — into a two-week-long auction of their works. Under the hashtag #memeconomy the creators of memes like Bad Luck Brian, Coughing Cat, Kitty Cat Dance, Scumbag Steve, Twerky Pepe and some others are finally finding a way to monetize the creation of genuine cultural phenomena that have been used freely for decades.

    They’re mostly being hosted on booming new crypto art and collectibles platform Foundation, which launched in February and has already hosted $6 million in sales of over 1,000 NFTs. I have a lot to say about NFTs and can’t say them all here, but I found this project fascinating and wanted to note it. The fact is that memes are internet art (sorry). They are unique creations that took elements of participatory and performance art and injected them into the veins of the internet. In many ways, they have millions of creators, as the original editions may have planted the seed but every use and permutation gave them additional strands of DNA, crafting their cultural importance upload by upload. They have let us express ourselves — our desire, disgust, joy and lust — when words just wouldn’t suffice.

    These “originals” are made original by the act of them being minted on the blockchain by the original artists. I know, it’s a distinction that may seem slim when the same images can be had anywhere at any time, but that’s the beauty of the re-organization that is happening within all of DeFi and crypto at the moment. We are stripping out layers of commerce and communication that benefited only platforms and participants that took part in the origination and sale of art from the perspective of frameworks like the DMCA and DRM. Those relationships are being rethought. The recapture of value for works that have already been broadly distributed has been historically relegated to “licensing them for t-shirts.” And extremely rarely elevated to the level of fine art sale.

    #NFT #Idéologie_propriétaire #Culture_numérique #Spéculation #Blockchain

  • Vendre un tweet 2,1 millions d’euros, des vidéos pour cinq millions : les NFT, nouvel eldorado numérique ?

    FactuelUne technologie reposant sur des certifications permises par les blockchains permet, désormais, d’obtenir des titres de propriété d’objets numériques de toutes sortes et de les vendre.

    Des certifications numériques

    Pourtant possiblement visibles par tous gratuitement sur un site d’hébergement de vidéos comme YouTube, les clips vendus sur NBA Top Shot suscitent une telle frénésie, car leurs acquéreurs en deviennent les propriétaires officiels.

    Ces vidéos sont, en effet, des Non-Fungible Tokens (NFT, des jetons non fongibles, en français). Un sigle qui recouvre toutes les métadonnées associées aux fichiers vidéo concernés. Ces informations établissent avec certitude que chaque vidéo est bien l’originale : l’acheteur du moment a la garantie qu’il acquiert la vidéo d’un joueur de basket directement créée pour cette occasion, et non une copie.

    Ce qui explique pourquoi les NFT sont apparus dans de nombreux secteurs : les arts, le jeu vidéo, le sport ou encore la réalité virtuelle. Les collectionneurs – et les spéculateurs – se les arrachent sur des plates-formes d’échange spécialisées, telles que OpenSea ou Rarible. Les transactions se font le plus souvent en cryptomonnaies, même si une plate-forme comme NBA Top Shot facilite l’expérience en autorisant les modes de paiement traditionnels.

    Récemment, la chanteuse Grimes a vendu aux enchères une série de clips musicaux en NFT pour un montant total d’environ cinq millions d’euros. Une gravure de Banksy a, elle, été détruite après avoir été reproduite en NFT, puis vendue en ligne pour 229 ethers, soit l’équivalent de 350 000 euros au moment où ces lignes ont été écrites.

    Just bought Death Of The Old by @Grimezsz for 258ETH. Anhedonia is a pure banger💥. This garage beat with high pitch… https://t.co/s6KByr318p
    — ThisIsAito (@aito.eth 🥚❤️)

    « Je viens d’acheter [la vidéo du morceau] Death Of The Old de Grimes pour 258 ETH », soit environ 388 000 dollars, se félicitait l’acheteur sur Twitter – en postant également la vidéo dont il est devenu propriétaire. La vidéo est également librement accessible ailleurs sur Internet.

    Depuis peu, la plate-forme Valuables propose de convertir des tweets en NFT pour les revendre. Jack Dorsey, le fondateur de Twitter et défenseur des cryptomonnaies, s’est pris au jeu et a mis aux enchères son premier message posté sur Twitter. Pour l’heure, un entrepreneur du secteur de la blockchain a posé l’enchère la plus haute : elle s’élève à environ… 2,1 millions d’euros.

    Autant d’objets numériques qui restent librement consultables par tous les internautes et copiables à l’infini (grâce au bon vieux « Enregistrer sous » et autres captures d’écran), mais dont les fichiers originaux viennent de trouver de nouveaux propriétaires officiels.

    #NFT #Idéologie_propriétaire #Culture_numérique #Spéculation #Blockchain

  • Anne Cordier : “Les activités sur écran font partie de l’univers de nos enfants” - enfants

    Avec les divers confinements, le numérique a pris une nouvelle place au sein des familles. Comment protéger et accompagner nos enfants ? Anne Cordier, maîtresse de conférences HDR en sciences de l’information et de la communication, nous éclaire sur notre rôle de parents… tout en nous déculpabilisant.

    Anne cordier chercheuse

    Les différents confinements ont-ils changé le rapport aux écrans au sein de la famille ?

    Les questions se sont posées différemment. Il me semble que les adultes parlent autrement des pratiques des enfants. Pendant le confinement, on a pris conscience que les écrans pouvaient être créateurs de lien social. On a vu se développer des liens intrafamiliaux, les parents se sont plus intéressés à ce que faisaient les enfants sur les écrans.

    Mais on a aussi entendu des parents culpabiliser parce que le temps que leurs enfants passaient devant un écran avait augmenté…

    Eh bien je voudrais leur dire qu’ils ne sont pas de mauvais parents pour autant ! De manière générale, on tient à leur encontre un discours très culpabilisant. Ils ne feraient jamais ce qu’il faut ! Si un parent met son enfant devant un écran le temps qu’il prépare à manger pour toute la famille, où est le drame ?

    D’autant qu’il faut mesurer le caractère exceptionnel de la période que nous vivons. Nous avons un fonctionnement très différent de la normale. Nous sommes beaucoup les uns sur les autres, c’est normal qu’on cherche des îlots d’isolement. Et puis, avec le retour à l’école, les choses se sont déjà rééquilibrées.

    Lire aussi : Les écrans dans les familles pendant le confinement, entretien avec Serge Tisseron

    Est-ce que le critère du temps passé devant un écran est parlant ?

    Il ne me semble pas très signifiant. Ce qui l’est davantage, c’est l’activité qui est réalisée. Rappelons quand même que ce critère du temps ne repose sur rien de scientifique. Il n’y a aucune étude qui nous dise que tant de temps passé provoque tel effet. Si un parent me dit “mon enfant a joué tout l’après-midi avec son train électrique”, tout va bien parce que cela répond à notre image d’Épinal qui veut qu’il joue avec du concret.

    Mais déplacer un bonhomme sur un écran, c’est concret aussi !

    Il ne s’agit pas de remplacer l’un par l’autre, mais ces activités sont complémentaires. Finalement, c’est le même discours que celui que nous tenaient nos parents sur la télé. Personnellement, je suis de la génération Loft Story, cela ne m’a pas empêchée de devenir prof !

    Comment faire pour que, dans le rapport aux écrans, la relation parents/enfants soit apaisée ?

    Il nous faut déjà entendre que les codes culturels et de socialisation ont évolué. Interdire ne sert à rien. Au contraire, cela poussera plutôt l’enfant à s’y précipiter. Quand un parent reproche à un enfant “c’est n’importe quoi ce que tu regardes, ce à quoi tu joues”, on crée un fossé d’incompréhension qui rompt la possibilité de dialogue. On a le droit d’avoir un temps de sidération. Mais ensuite, il faut demander “pourquoi tu fais ça ? Qu’est-ce que ça t’apporte ?”

    Lire aussi : Pourquoi accuser l’écran est un faux débat ?

    Mais le rôle du parent est aussi de protéger face à des contenus qui peuvent ne pas être adaptés…

    Bien sûr. Et l’éducation, ce n’est pas juste “vas-y, épanouis-toi !” Le parent est aussi là comme garde-fou. Le processus de surveillance est essentiel. On peut dire à notre enfant que ce n’est pas pour l’embêter, mais qu’on est inquiet. On peut aussi lui demander son avis, comment il se prémunit contre ça. Et lui dire de ne pas hésiter à nous en parler s’il tombe sur un contenu pas adapté. En lui rappelant que ce n’est pas de sa faute. Car, quand cela survient, les enfants ont tendance à culpabiliser.

    Le contrôle parental sur les écrans peut-il être la solution ?
    Personnellement, je n’y suis pas favorable, si la démarche n’est pas expliquée. Il faut éclairer l’enfant sur le comment et le pourquoi.

    La question des écrans peut aussi constituer un point de crispation entre les parents…

    Oui car elle éprouve notre rapport à la parentalité, à notre propre enfance. Elle cristallise le “être ensemble” entre le “je” et le “nous”. Dans les études, on voit d’ailleurs que ce sont souvent les mères qui prennent la charge des règles à mettre en place et à appliquer. Il y a vraiment un enjeu genré autour de cette question.

    Selon vous, il convient de reconsidérer le regard que nous, adultes, portons sur les écrans ?

    Oui, il nous faut apprendre à considérer ces activités comme aussi importantes que celles de la “vraie vie”. Si votre enfant perd un match de foot, vous allez le consoler. Eh bien si ce match se déroule sur un écran, il nous faut aussi prendre sa déception en charge car l’émotion n’en est pas moins réelle. Il nous faut considérer ces activités sur écran comme faisant partie de leur univers.

    Propos recueillis par Joséphine Lebard

    Crédits : Benoît Teillet – © Bayard jeunesse 2020

    #Anne_Cordier #Confinement #Médias_sociaux #Culture_numérique #Enfants

  • Why the Dancing Robots Are a Really, Really Big Problem. | by James J. Ward | The Startup | Dec, 2020 | Medium

    Yes, the cynical view is probably right (at least in part), but that’s not what makes this video so problematic, in my view. The real issue is that what you’re seeing is a visual lie. The robots are not dancing, even though it looks like they are. And that’s a big problem.

    Humans dance for all kinds of reasons. We dance because we’re happy or angry, we dance to be part of a community or we do it by ourselves, we dance as part of elaborate rituals or because Bruce Springsteen held out a hand to us at a concert. Dancing, in fact, is one of the things that humans have in common across cultures, geographies, and time — we love to dance, and whenever we do it, it’s because we are taking part in an activity we understand to have some kind of meaning, even if we don’t know what it is. Perhaps that’s the point, how can we even explain dancing? As Isadora Duncan once said, “If I could tell you what it meant there would be no point in dancing it.”

    Robots, though? Robots don’t dance. That’s not some sort of critique of a robot or shade-throwing. I don’t criticize my hammer for not being able to recite Seamus Heaney. Tools serve functions and move in the ways designed or concocted for them — but they have no innerworldly life that swells and expresses itself in dancing. We might like to anthropomorphize them, imbue them with humanness largely because we do that to everything. We talk to our toasters and cut deals with our cars (“Just make it ten more miles!”) because we relate to a world filled with things made by humans as though that world was filled with humans, or at least things with a little humanity. And so when we watch the video, we see robots moving in a way that we sometimes do or wish we could, we experience the music, the rhythmic motion, the human-like gestures, and they all combine to give us an impression of joyfulness, exuberance, and idea that we should love them, now that they can dance.

    But they can’t.

    No, robots don’t dance: they carry out the very precise movements that their — exceedingly clever — programmers design to move in a way that humans will perceive as dancing. It is a simulacrum, a trompe l’oeil, a conjurer’s trick. And it works not because of something inherent in the machinery, but because of something inherent in ours: our ever-present capacity for finding the familiar. It looks like human dancing, except it’s an utterly meaningless act, stripped of any social, cultural, historical, or religious context, and carried out as a humblebrag show of technological might. Also: the robots are terrible at doing the Mashed Potato.

    The moment we get high-functioning, human-like robots we sexualize them or force them to move in ways that we think are entertaining, or both. And this is where the ethics become so crucial. We don’t owe a robot human rights; they aren’t human, and we should really be spending our time figuring out how to make sure that humans have human rights. But when we allow, celebrate, and laugh at things like this Boston Dynamics video, we’re tacitly approving a view of the world where domination and control over pseudo-humans becomes increasingly hard to distinguish from the same desire for domination and control over actual humans.

    Any ethical framework would tell you this is troubling. You don’t need to know your consequentialism from your deontology to understand that cultivating and promoting a view of the world where “things that are human-like but less human than I am get to be used however I want” will be a problem.

    #Robots #Intelligence_artificielle #Danse #Ethique #Culture_numérique

    • voir peut-être aussi Stiegler (2016) :


      Je réfléchis au rapport entre la technique et le mal […] Adorno et Horkheimer en 1944 disent que les industries culturelles sont en train de produire une nouvelle forme de barbarie. […] Ils soutiennent qu’à travers les industries culturelles, la raison se transforme en rationalisation, ce qui signifie pour moi la réduction de la raison au calcul, à la calculabilité. Ils montrent comment s’instaure un système qui est apparu dès les années 20 aux Etats-Unis, et qui va considérablement s’étendre avec la télévision. Il s’agit d’un système entre la production automatisée des automobiles, la consommation et la crétinisation qui va s’instaurer, d’après eux, avec les industries dites de programmes.

      Ce processus va bien plus loin encore selon moi avec les technologies numériques, ce qu’on appelle la data économie, mais je pense qu’il faut rouvrir ce dossier sur d’autres bases que celles de Adorno et Horkheimer (…) Nous vivons nous au 21ème siècle une véritable révolution des conditions de la pensée par une exploitation désormais absolument systématique des capacités de calcul artificiel qui est en train de totalement bouleverser notre horizon de pensée.

  • En Afrique du Sud, le ministre et ses gousses d’ail

    Rien, de toute cette année de crise, ne l’aura fait dévier d’un iota. Tito Mboweni, le ministre des finances sud-africain, un homme de 61 ans qui se disait « trop vieux » pour la fonction, lorsque le premier gouvernement de Cyril Ramaphosa était en train d’être constitué, en 2018, n’a pas cédé un pouce de terrain… sur sa façon de cuisiner.

    Que de critiques, que de sarcasmes sur ses manquements de « chef » ne lui a-t-il pas fallu endurer tout au long de 2020, année au cours de laquelle, par ailleurs, il a mené l’économie de son pays dans la tempête. Mais il continue. Sa dernière recette de l’année : un foie de bœuf sauté (encore raté, selon l’opinion sud-africaine, qui suit tout ça de près).

    Tito Mboweni aux fourneaux, c’est l’anti-instagrammeur en action, la volonté faite homme de faire les choses à sa manière, sans fioritures ni compromis. La chose est d’autant plus facile à suivre que l’ex-gouverneur de la Banque centrale, entre 1999 et 2010 – du reste, il préfère être appelé gouverneur que chef –, poste tout sur Twitter. Les ingrédients, ses questions (« Pilchards ce soir ? »), l’incroyable pyramide de gousses d’ail qu’il s’apprête à intégrer à un plat, et le résultat.

    Parfois, il prend une photo de sa table de dîner : son couvert, le plat, un verre d’eau. Déluge de moqueries (depuis « C’est quoi ce verre d’eau », jusqu’à « Depuis quand on mange avec des couverts ? »). Mais, en définitive, le voilà suivi par près d’un million d’abonnés.

    It started off well. A simple meal of ox liver with vergies. Great idea. It did not work out. I need an assistant… https://t.co/c8Ucqtx9nZ
    — tito_mboweni (@Tito Mboweni)

    Des ratages célèbres

    Il est impossible de déterminer la part de calcul, de liberté et de fantaisie dans ce feuilleton anticulinaire. De toute évidence, le ministre des finances est un cuisinier atroce authentique. Son poulet terne et gris baignant dans un vague mélange très aqueux prétendant au nom de sauce a déclenché une tempête de commentaires, de moqueries, de mèmes, et donné naissance à une publicité.

    Juste avant la fin de cette année de ratages désormais célèbres, Tito Mboweni a suggéré qu’il lui faudrait peut-être, pour 2021, se trouver un « cuisinier adjoint », et une star de la télé-réalité, chef renommé, le pourchasse d’ailleurs de ses assiduités pour tenir ce rôle.

    Soit le ministre se moque du qu’en-dira-t-on, soit il a trouvé que cette veine lui réussissait. La chose pourrait être étudiée d’un point de vue de communication politique.

    #médias_sociaux #Communication_politique #cuisine #Culture_numérique

  • The Eight Pieces of Pop Culture That Defined the Trump Era - POLITICO

    Certain cultural figures loom so large that they eventually serve as shorthand for the spirit of their times. There’s Michael Jackson, the personification of the smiley-face maximalism of Reagan’s 1980s; Lucille Ball and the aspirational domesticity of the Eisenhower era; even Homer Simpson, a postmodern joke of a patriarch befitting the irony-soaked Clinton 1990s.

    As America’s Trump years come to an end, there is only one pop culture figure who fits that era-defining mold: Donald Trump himself. But unlike those earlier figures, Trump doesn’t represent any single, unifying truth about our character; rather, he’s a symbol of how fragmented it has become. That’s partially thanks to his waging a relentless, cable news-fueled culture war, but it’s also the result of long-developing trends in media.

    For decades, cultural Jeremiahs have prophesied the death of the monoculture—a shared, unifying cultural experience that spans race, class and regional difference. With the decline of broadcasting, social platforms cannibalizing traditional news, and YouTube and personalized streaming services serving up an endless buffet of new content “based on your viewing history,” the long, slow death of that phenomenon accelerated wildly just as Trump rose to power.

    There is no single story that the books, films and pop cultural miscellany of the Trump presidency can tell us about its character. So, instead of trying to impose a narrative on the cultural chaos of the past five years, we’ve decided to let it speak for itself.

    These eight items represent the social upheaval, cries for justice, death-grip nostalgia, internet-abetted hustle and quietly driftless contemplation that have marked this era. They’ve come in forms both disruptively cutting edge and surprisingly old school. Individually, none can fully explain how we got from Trump’s 2015 escalator ride to this uncertain, transitional moment. But the ways in which they speak to their creators’ own perspectives—and, implicitly, to one another—tell us plenty about the character of a nation that will be seeking to fill the spotlight left empty when Trump finally exits the stage.

    The “Renegade” dance/meme
    The joys and risks that come with the democratization of fame.

    If you’re over the age of 30, the words “mmmxneil,” “dubsmash” and “shiggy” probably mean nothing to you. Nearly everyone else will recognize them as points in the constellation of viral online music and dance trends that bubbled up to the mainstream through their popularity on TikTok, the China-based social media app that launched a thousand tech policy takes in the Trump administration’s waning days.

    If you’re not familiar, the app is home to short (less than a minute) videos, usually featuring some kind of ephemeral joke, dance or meme reference, with about 100 million active users in the U.S. alone. It’s built for virality—you see someone’s dance or joke, you do your own iteration of it, your friends see your version and replicate it, and so on. Most emblematic as a cultural phenomenon is perhaps the platform’s most popular dance, at least for the fleeting moment in which such things burn brightly and flame out: the Renegade.

    Seemingly everyone went viral with their version of the dance, from the Grammy-winning rapper Lizzo to various K-Pop stars to homegrown TikTok superstar Charli D’Amelio. One person who didn’t, however, was its creator: a 14-year-old dance student in the Atlanta suburbs named Jalaiah Harmon.

    In late 2019, Harmon uploaded a simple homemade video of the dance to the internet and it went viral almost immediately, filtering all the way up to the aforementioned million-click-grabbing tastemakers. TikTok, almost by its very nature, would eventually divorce the work from its creator: Her video’s popularity in turn inspired other users to recreate the dance on their own without citation, on and on up the food chain until its embrace by mainstream celebrities. After becoming somewhat of a cause celébrè for those concerned with murky issues of authorship and credit on the internet, Harmon earned a New York Times profile and eventually made it to that great showcase of down-the-middle mainstream culture, “Ellen.”

    Her odd saga—going from the near-universal experience of teens screwing around with their friends and making up silly dances, to national television and the center of a debate around cultural appropriation and credit—is a neat symbol of the emerging media landscape. A social media “creator” is more likely to be the 14-year-old next door, or your ambiguously employed cousin, or your math teacher, than the product of any slick entertainment enterprise.

    The pop culture landscape isn’t just atomized, it’s open source. We’re no longer just members of niche cultural fiefdoms; we have the power to create fiefdoms unto ourselves—and, inevitably, watch them escape our control. Enjoy responsibly.

    #Pop_culture #Culture_numérique #TikTok

  • Sommes-nous vraiment en train de fabriquer des “crétins digitaux" ?

    Dialogue entre Xavier de la Porte et Anne Cordier

    J’ai l’impression que le discours sur les jeunes et les écrans est en train de changer. Alors qu’il y a quelques années, on vantait les compétences de ces digital natives - certes un peu accro à leurs écrans, mais tellement habiles à les manipuler - aujourd’hui, ce qu’on entend, ce sont le plus souvent des discours très alarmistes.

    #EMI #culture_numérique #écran

  • Dave Grohl’s Epic Drum Battle With 10-Year-Old Nandi Bushell - The New York Times

    Marrant, je lisais et écoutais les vidéos... et je me suis dit "Que voilà une belle histoire, comme j’aime en raconter dans mes cours. Il n’y a pas que le côté surveillance de la force à regarder, mais aussi ces feel good stories qui magnifient les médias sociaux. J’étais content quand j’ai vu que le New York Times avait la même conclusion. Il y aura donc de la batterie dans mes prochains cours !!!

    That said, he experienced it like any piece of content — you watch it, you enjoy it, you pass it on and then move on. But toward the end of the summer, another one of Bushell’s videos made its way to Grohl via a flood of texts from friends around the world. This time, Bushell had prefaced her cover of the 1997 Foo Fighters song “Everlong” with a direct challenge to a drum-off. The rules of a drum-off aren’t formally sanctioned by any governing body, but Bushell’s exhilarated facial expressions and mastery of the song’s breakneck pace meant Grohl was in for a battle, should he choose to accept.

    In a separate video interview, Bushell offered a very simple reason for why she decided to call out Grohl: “He’s a drummer, ’cause he drummed in quite a few bands, so why not?” Bushell is 10 years old, and the clarity of her logic — her favorite word might be “epic” — was blessedly refreshing. Grohl is her favorite drummer, and when asked why, she answered, “He thrashes the kit really hard, which I like.”

    Despite his full docket, and after enough peer pressure, Grohl rose to the challenge with a performance of “Dead End Friends” by Them Crooked Vultures, one of those many bands he’s played in over the years. “At first I thought, ‘I’m not going to hit her with something too complicated, because I want this to be fun,’” he said. “I’m not a technical drummer; I am a backyard keg-party, garage jam-band drummer, and that’s the way it is.”

    Nonetheless, Bushell volleyed back another astute and overjoyed performance in two days. Grohl conceded defeat, and since then the two have continued playing music for each other. He recorded an original song about Bushell (sample lyric: “She got the power/She got the soul/Gonna save the world with her rock ’n’ roll”); Bushell returned the favor with her own song, “Rock and Grohl.” Cumulatively, the videos have attracted millions of views across YouTube and Twitter, making it a truly rare uncomplicated feel-good story from the last few months.

    #Médias_sociaux #Nandi_Bushell #Dave_Grohl #Batterie #Battle #Feel_good #Culture_numérique

  • ‘OK Boomer’ Marks the End of Friendly Generational Relations - The New York Times

    In a viral audio clip on TikTok, a white-haired man in a baseball cap and polo shirt declares, “The millennials and Generation Z have the Peter Pan syndrome, they don’t ever want to grow up.”

    Thousands of teens have responded through remixed reaction videos and art projects with a simple phrase: “ok boomer.”

    “Ok boomer” has become Generation Z’s endlessly repeated retort to the problem of older people who just don’t get it, a rallying cry for millions of fed up kids. Teenagers use it to reply to cringey YouTube videos, Donald Trump tweets, and basically any person over 30 who says something condescending about young people — and the issues that matter to them.

    #OK_boomer #Memes #Culture_numérique

  • How K-Pop Fandom Operates as a Force for Political Activism | Time

    illions of dollars in donations. Viral hashtag domination. Ticket interference at Trump rallies. These might sound like the actions of a highly-coordinated political or philanthropic campaign. In reality, it’s the work of a broad coalition of K-pop fans. Over the past few months, the power of K-pop fans to make their values known has become a hot topic of media conversation.

    But for those who have been paying close attention, the impact of K-pop’s fans on our present political discourse should not come as a surprise. Accustomed to mobilizing quickly online, and often holding progressive values, fans of K-pop groups like BTS, Stray Kids, Monsta X and Loona are uniquely prepared to organize and succeed in their choices of online activism. They have been known to deploy their influence over the years in the service of causes ranging from human rights campaigns to education programs, often in the names of the idols they support.

    The millions of supporters of different groups, both within the U.S. and beyond, are hardly a demographic or political monolith, however.

    “K-pop fans aren’t just K-pop fans. It’s not a binary; that’s dehumanizing,” says Tamar Herman, a pop correspondent for Billboard and author of the upcoming book BTS: Blood, Sweat & Tears. “It’s not just K-pop fans who are doing this. It’s Black people who are K-pop fans who are doing this, it’s allies who want to support Black Lives Matter who are K-pop fans who are doing this.”

    #K-pop #Mobilisation #Culture_numérique

  • What Happened to Urban Dictionary? | WIRED

    In time, however, the site began to espouse the worst of the internet—Urban Dictionary became something much uglier than perhaps what Peckham set out to create. It transformed into a harbor for hate speech. By allowing anyone to post definitions (users can up or down vote their favorite ones) Peckham opened the door for the most insidious among us. Racism, homophobia, xenophobia, and sexism currently serve as the basis for some of the most popular definitions on the site. In fact, one of the site’s definitions for sexism details it as “a way of life like welfare for black people. now stop bitching and get back to the kitchen.” Under Lady Gaga, one top entry describes her as the embodiment of “a very bad joke played on all of us by Tim Burton.” For LeBron James, it reads: “To bail out on your team when times get tough.”

    When I first discovered Urban Dictionary around 2004, I considered it a public good. The internet still carried an air of innocence then; the lion’s share of people who roamed chat forums and posted on LiveJournal had yet to adopt the mob instincts of cancel culture; Twitter was years away from warping our consumption habits and Facebook was only a fraction of the giant it is today. I was relatively new to what the internet could offer—its infinite landscapes dazzled my curious teenage mind—and found a strange solace in Urban Dictionary.

    My understanding of it hewed to a simple logic. Here was a place where words and phrases that friends, cousins, neighbors, and people I knew used with regularity found resonance and meaning. Before Urban Dictionary, I’d never seen words like hella or jawn defined anywhere other than in conversation. That they were afforded a kind of linguistic reverence was what awed me, what drew me in

    Urban Dictionary’s abandonment of that edict afforded it a rebel spirit. Early on, the beauty of the site was its deep insistence on showing how slang is socialized based on a range of factors: community, school, work. How we casually convey meaning is a direct reflection of our geography, our networks, our worldviews. At its best, Urban Dictionary crystallized that proficiency. Slang is often understood as a less serious form of literacy, as deficient or lacking. Urban Dictionary said otherwise. It let the cultivators of the most forward-looking expressions of language speak for themselves. It believed in the splendor of slang that was deemed unceremonious and paltry.

    But if the radiant array of terminology uploaded to the site was initially meant to function as a possibility of human speech, it is now mostly a repository of vile language. In its current form, Urban Dictionary is a cauldron of explanatory excess and raw prejudice. “The problem for Peckham’s bottom line is that derogatory content—not the organic evolution of language in the internet era—may be the site’s primary appeal,” Clio Chang wrote in The New Republic in 2017, as the site was taking on its present identity.

    Luckily, like language, the internet is stubbornly resistant to stasis. It is constantly reconfiguring and building anew. Today, other digital portals—Twitter, Instagram, gossip blogs like Bossip and The Shade Room, even group texts on our smartphones—function as better incubators of language than Urban Dictionary. Consider how Bossip’s headline mastery functions as a direct extension of black style—which is to say the site embraces, head on, the syntax and niche vernacular of a small community of people. The endeavor is both an acknowledgement of and a lifeline to a facet of black identity.

    That’s not to say Urban Dictionary is vacant any good, but its utility, as a window into different communities and local subcultures, as a tool that extends sharp and luminous insight, has been obscured by darker intentions. What began as a joke is no longer funny. Even those who operate on the site understand it for what it’s eroded into. The top definition for Urban Dictionary reads: “Supposed to [b]e a user-inputed dictionary for words. However, has become a mindless forum of jokes, view-points, sex, and basically anything but the real definition of a word.” Where Oxford and Merriam-Webster erected walls around language, essentially controlling what words and expressions society deemed acceptable, Urban Dictionary, in its genesis, helped to democratize that process. Only the republic eventually ate itself.

    #Urban_dictionnary #Langage #Evolution_internet #Culture_numérique

  • Digital gardens let you cultivate your own little bit of the internet | MIT Technology Review

    Le retour des « pages personnelles »

    A growing number of people are creating individualized, creative sites that eschew the one-size-fits-all look and feel of social media

    Tanya Basu
    September 3, 2020
    digital garden illustration of wild plants with flowers growing around screensMs Tech | Wikimedia, Pixabay

    Sara Garner had a nagging feeling something wasn’t quite right.

    A software engineer, she was revamping her personal site, but it just didn’t feel like her. Sure, it had the requisite links to her social media and her professional work, but it didn’t really reflect her personality. So she created a page focused on museums, which she is obsessed with. It’s still under construction, but she envisions a page that includes thoughts on her favorite museums, describes the emotions they evoked, and invites others to share their favorite museums and what they’ve learned.

    “I’m going for a feeling of wonderment, a connection across time,” she says.

    Welcome to the world of “digital gardens.” These creative reimaginings of blogs have quietly taken nerdier corners of the internet by storm. A growing movement of people are tooling with back-end code to create sites that are more collage-like and artsy, in the vein of Myspace and Tumblr—less predictable and formatted than Facebook and Twitter. Digital gardens explore a wide variety of topics and are frequently adjusted and changed to show growth and learning, particularly among people with niche interests. Through them, people are creating an internet that is less about connections and feedback, and more about quiet spaces they can call their own.
    “Everyone does their own weird thing”

    The movement might be gaining steam now, but its roots date back to 1998, when Mark Bernstein introduced the idea of the “hypertext garden,” arguing for spaces on the internet that let a person wade into the unknown. “Gardens … lie between farmland and wilderness,” he wrote. “The garden is farmland that delights the senses, designed for delight rather than commodity.” (His digital garden includes a recent review of a Bay Area carbonara dish and reflections on his favorite essays.)

    The new wave of digital gardens discuss books and movies, with introspective journal entries; others offer thoughts on philosophy and politics. Some are works of art in themselves, visual masterpieces that invite the viewer to explore; others are simpler and more utilitarian, using Google Docs or Wordpress templates to share intensely personal lists. Avid readers in particular have embraced the concept, sharing creative, beautiful digital bookshelves that illustrate their reading journey.

    Nerding hard on digital gardens, personal wikis, and experimental knowledge systems with @_jonesian today.

    We have an epic collection going, check these out...

    1. @tomcritchlow’s Wikifolders: https://t.co/QnXw0vzbMG pic.twitter.com/9ri6g9hD93
    — Maggie Appleton (@Mappletons) April 15, 2020

    Beneath the umbrella term, however, digital gardens don’t follow rules. They’re not blogs, short for “weblogs,” a term that suggests a time-stamped record of thought. They’re not a social-media platform—connections are made, but often it’s through linking to other digital gardens, or gathering in forums like Reddit and Telegram to nerd out over code.

    Tom Critchlow, a consultant who has been cultivating his digital garden for years, spells out the main difference between old-school blogging and digital gardening. “With blogging, you’re talking to a large audience,” he says. “With digital gardening, you’re talking to yourself. You focus on what you want to cultivate over time.”

    What they have in common is that they can be edited at any time to reflect evolution and change. The idea is similar to editing a Wikipedia entry, though digital gardens are not meant to be the ultimate word on a topic. As a slower, clunkier way to explore the internet, they revel in not being the definitive source, just a source, says Mike Caulfield, a digital literacy expert at Washington State University.

    In fact, the whole point of digital gardens is that they can grow and change, and that various pages on the same topic can coexist. “It’s less about iterative learning and more about public learning,” says Maggie Appleton, a designer. Appleton’s digital garden, for example, includes thoughts on plant-based meat, book reviews, and digressions on Javascript and magical capitalism. It is “an open collection of notes, resources, sketches, and explorations I’m currently cultivating,” its introduction declares. “Some notes are Seedlings, some are budding, and some are fully grown Evergreen[s].”

    Appleton, who trained as an anthropologist, says she was drawn to digital gardens because of their depth. “The content is not on Twitter, and it’s never deleted,” she says. “Everyone does their own weird thing. The sky’s the limit.”

    That ethos of creativity and individuality was echoed by several people I spoke to. Some suggested that the digital garden was a backlash to the internet we’ve become grudgingly accustomed to, where things go viral, change is looked down upon, and sites are one-dimensional. Facebook and Twitter profiles have neat slots for photos and posts, but enthusiasts of digital gardens reject those fixed design elements. The sense of time and space to explore is key.

    Caulfield, who has researched misinformation and disinformation, wrote a blog post in 2015 on the “technopastoral,” in which he described the federated wiki structure promoted by computer programmer Ward Cunningham, who thought the internet should support a “chorus of voices” rather than the few rewarded on social media today.

    “The stream has dominated our lives since the mid-2000s,” Caulfield says. But it means people are either posting content or consuming it. And, Caulfield says, the internet as it stands rewards shock value and dumbing things down. “By engaging in digital gardening, you are constantly finding new connections, more depth and nuance,” he says. “What you write about is not a fossilized bit of commentary for a blog post. When you learn more, you add to it. It’s less about shock and rage; it’s more connective.” In an age of doom-scrolling and Zoom fatigue, some digital-garden enthusiasts say the internet they live in is, as Caulfield puts it, “optimistically hopeful.”

    While many people are searching for more intimate communities on the internet, not everyone can spin up a digital garden: you need to be able to do at least some rudimentary coding. Making a page from scratch affords more creative freedom than social-media and web-hosting sites that let you drag and drop elements onto your page, but it can be daunting and time-consuming.

    Chris Biscardi is trying to get rid of that barrier to entry with a text editor for digital gardens that’s still in its alpha stage. Called Toast, it’s “something you might experience with Wordpress,” he says.

    Ultimately, whether digital gardens will be an escapist remnant of 2020’s hellscape or wither in the face of easier social media remains to be seen. “I’m interested in seeing how it plays out,” Appleton says.

    “For some people it’s a reaction to social media, and for others it’s a trend,” Critchlow says. “Whether or not it will hit critical mass … that’s to be seen.”

    #Internet #Culture_numérique #Pages_personnelles #Blog

  • Trump on QAnon Followers: ’These Are People That Love Our Country’ - The New York Times

    WASHINGTON — President Trump on Wednesday offered encouragement to proponents of QAnon, a viral conspiracy theory that has gained a widespread following among people who believe the president is secretly battling a criminal band of sex traffickers, and suggested that its proponents were patriots upset with unrest in Democratic cities.

    “I’ve heard these are people that love our country,” Mr. Trump said during a White House news conference ostensibly about the coronavirus. “So I don’t know really anything about it other than they do supposedly like me.”

    “Is that supposed to be a bad thing or a good thing?” the president said lightly, responding to a reporter who asked if he could support that theory. “If I can help save the world from problems, I am willing to do it. I’m willing to put myself out there.”

    Mr. Trump’s cavalier response was a remarkable public expression of support for conspiracy theorists who have operated in the darkest corners of the internet and have at times been charged with domestic terrorism and planned kidnapping.

    “QAnon conspiracy theorists spread disinformation and foster a climate of extremism and paranoia, which in some cases has led to violence. Condemning this movement should not be difficult,” said Jonathan A. Greenblatt, the chief executive of the Anti-Defamation League. “It’s downright dangerous when a leader not only refuses to do so, but also wonders whether what they are doing is ‘a good thing.’”

    QAnon is a larger and many-tentacled version of the Pizzagate conspiracy theory, which falsely claimed that Hillary Clinton was operating a child sex-trafficking ring out of the basement of a Washington, D.C., pizza restaurant. In December 2016, a man who said he was on the hunt for proof of child abuse was arrested after firing a rifle inside the restaurant.

    QAnon supporters often flood social media pages with memes and YouTube videos that target well-known figures — like Mrs. Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, and the actor Tom Hanks — with unfounded claims about their links to child abuse. Lately, activists have used anti-child-trafficking hashtags as a recruitment tool.

    “It’s not just a conspiracy theory, this is a domestic extremist movement,” said Travis View, a host of “QAnon Anonymous,” a podcast that seeks to explain the movement. Mr. View said that Twitter and Facebook pages exploded with comments from gleeful followers after Mr. Trump’s comments.

    Mr. View pointed out that the president answered the question by supporting the central premise of the QAnon theory — that he is battling a cabal of left-wing pedophiles — rather than addressing the lack of evidence behind the movement.

    In recent weeks, platforms including Twitter and Facebook have rushed to dismantle a mushrooming number of QAnon-related accounts and fan pages, a move that people who study the movement say is too little and too late. On Wednesday, after a record amount of QAnon-related growth on the site, Facebook said it removed 790 QAnon groups and was restricting another 1,950 groups, 440 pages and more than 10,000 Instagram accounts.

    On Facebook alone, activity on some of the largest QAnon groups rose 200 to 300 percent in the past six months, according to data gathered by The New York Times.

    “We have seen growing movements that, while not directly organizing violence, have celebrated violent acts, shown that they have weapons and suggest they will use them, or have individual followers with patterns of violent behavior,” Facebook said in a statement, adding that it would also block QAnon hashtags like #digitalarmy and #thestorm.

    But the movement made the jump from social media long ago: With dozens of QAnon supporters running this year for Congress — including several who have won Republican primaries in Oregon and Georgia — QAnon is knocking on the door of mainstream politics, and has done so with the president’s help.

    For his part, the president has often reposted QAnon-centric content into his Twitter feed. And QAnon followers have long interpreted messages from Dan Scavino, the White House director of social media, as promoting tongue-in-cheek symbols associated with the movement.

    “I’m not surprised at all by his reaction, and I don’t think QAnon conspirators are surprised either. It’s terrifying,” Vanessa Bouché, an associate professor of political science at Texas Christian University, said in an interview. “In a democratic society, we make decisions based on information. And if people are believing these lies, then we’re in a very dangerous position.”

    #Qanon #Trump #Fake_news #Culture_numérique #Mèmes #Extrême_droite

  • The human cost of a WeChat ban: severing a hundred million ties | MIT Technology Review

    The US hurting itself

    There’s a reason why WeChat is the only platform still available for communicating with people in China. It’s because the Chinese government banned everything else. First it was Facebook and Google, then Telegram and WhatsApp. “It’s not as if there’s no fault on the Chinese side for this,” Webster says.

    But retaliating in turn is also not the solution. “If you think about what the US is doing, it’s basically learning from China,” says Youyou Zhou, a Chinese national who works as a journalist in the US and relies on WeChat to talk to sources and loved ones. “It’s establishing cyber sovereignty and claiming to protect user data in the US by using political action and legal means to fend off competition. It’s just not what you would expect a liberal and free country would do.”

    Over time, both Webster and Zhou worry that this cleaving will hurt the US. What’s happening in China right now, Webster says, is “legitimately very dark,” including the escalating oppression of Muslim Uyghurs in Xinjiang and the passage of the National Security Law in Hong Kong. But the Trump administration’s actions are against the US’s self-interests, he says. “If we set ourselves up for a new cold war and there’s no ability to monitor actual events in China, I think we could very well miss opportunities to have better outcomes in the long term. Essentially tearing down any connection between the two places is a recipe for enduring conflict.”

    #WeChat #USA-Chine #Fin_du_global_internet #Culture_numérique

  • « Nous devons apprendre à voir Internet comme un acteur politique »

    La psychologue Sherry Turkle, spécialiste du Web, estime que la pandémie, malgré des initiatives numériques désintéressées, n’a pas fait disparaître le risque que nous soyons manipulés par des technologies qui cherchent à capter notre attention.

    Avec la pandémie, le télétravail s’est largement répandu. Si jongler entre vie professionnelle et vie de famille n’est pas toujours facile, ne faut-il pas se réjouir d’être enfin libéré de l’emprise du bureau ?

    Votre question soulève plusieurs enjeux. A propos du travail multitâche, il faut rappeler que, malheureusement, nous ne savons pas faire plusieurs choses à la fois. Nous avons l’illusion d’y arriver, particulièrement lorsque nous travaillons à la maison. Mais notre cerveau ne peut faire qu’une tâche à la fois. La recherche est très claire sur un point : à chaque chose que nous ajoutons, notre capacité de concentration diminue, alors que nous avons l’impression d’être de plus en plus efficaces. C’est un tour que nous joue notre cerveau. Pour faire face, la solution la plus simple est de se montrer bienveillant envers soi-même, lorsque les choses à faire s’accumulent, il faut mieux diviser notre temps entre le travail, les enfants, les amis, etc.
    Article réservé à nos abonnés Lire aussi Une conversion au télétravail plutôt réussie, selon une étude

    Second enjeu, décrire le fait de travailler de la maison comme une libération revient à présenter le bureau comme un endroit qui n’a que des désavantages. Les choses ne sont pas si simples. Travailler à la maison apporte un supplément de flexibilité pour concilier vie professionnelle et vie familiale. Les parents peuvent optimiser leur temps, sachant qu’ils pourront profiter du sommeil des enfants pour se consacrer à leur travail. Sans avoir à se déplacer, on récupère aussi de précieuses minutes que l’on peut employer à des fins personnelles.

    Mais on risque aussi de voir s’affaiblir notre réseau professionnel, les décisions perdent aussi de leur collégialité et nous sommes moins créatifs. Et n’oublions pas que ce sont les femmes qui, plus que les hommes, paient le prix du travail à distance. Tirons néanmoins profit de cette expérience pour rendre les entreprises plus flexibles et mieux utiliser les technologies, les mettre davantage à notre service plutôt que l’inverse.

    Vous êtes généralement très critique à l’égard du Web et de ses possibilités dites « sociales ». Pourquoi ?

    Les différents modes de communication que nous employons sur nos téléphones, nos ordinateurs – textos, courriels, échanges sur des forums – font tous la même promesse : tout se passera sans difficulté, sans heurt ni « friction ». Ce discours, d’abord employé pour parler d’applications servant au transfert de fonds, est désormais utilisé pour des applications dites sociales. Nous nous sommes donc habitués à choisir la photo la plus flatteuse, à écrire plutôt que de téléphoner, à maîtriser beaucoup mieux notre expression que lors d’un échange fait de vive voix.

    Mais échapper – en amour, dans notre vie de famille, en amitié – à toute « friction », est-ce vraiment possible ou désirable ? C’est pourtant la vie que l’on nous a vendue en ligne, contredisant notre expérience dans le monde physique. Sur le plan politique, on a donc cru que la démocratie pouvait se contenter de ce monde numérique aseptisé. Nous vivons pourtant un moment d’intenses frictions, comme le mouvement Black Lives Matter ou la répression à Hongkong le démontrent. Si Internet doit être sans friction, alors cette technologie est en profond décalage avec l’époque.

    #Frictionless #Sherry_Turkle #Confinement #Internet #Culture_numérique

  • Randonautica: What Is It and Are the Stories Real? - The New York Times

    That is the gamble one takes with Randonautica, which claims to channel users’ “intentions” to produce nearby coordinates for exploration. Think: The law of attraction meets geocaching.

    Randonautica makes a few asks of users — “What would you like to get?” “Choose your entropy source” — before prompting them to “focus on your intent” while it fetches coordinates. This process relies on location settings and a random number generator, which, despite what the company says, cannot be directly affected by human thoughts.

    Since its release, Randonautica has been downloaded 10.8 million times from the App Store and Google Play, according to the research firm Sensor Tower. After a few months of rapid growth, much of it propelled by TikTok, its downloads have started to taper off, according to data from the analytics firm App Annie.

    In an interview in July, Mr. Lengfelder described Randonautica as “a multimedia storytelling platform” that encourages “performance art.” He said the overwhelming response has not surprised him.

    “I kind of figured it was inevitable,” he said. “Because basically what it is is like a machine that creates memes and legends, and it kind of virally propagates on its own.”

    So How Does It Work?

    On first use, Randonautica offers a brief intro and some tips (“Always Randonaut with a charged phone,” “Never trespass”) before prompting you to share your location.

    Then it will ask you to choose which type of point you would like it to generate (the differences between which only matter if you believe the app can read your thoughts) before fetching coordinates from a random number generator. The user can then open that location in Google Maps to begin their journey.

    Randonautica throws big words like “quantum” and “entropy” around a lot. Its creators believe that quantum random numbers are more likely to be influenced by human consciousness than non-quantum random numbers. This hypothesis is part of a theory Mr. Lengfelder refers to as “mind-machine interaction,” or M.M.I.: It posits that when you focus on your intent, you are influencing the numbers.

    “Basically if you’re looking for any kind of peer-reviewed, scientific consensus, that does not exist yet in the literature,” Mr. Lengfelder said in a TikTok video in June, speaking about the theory. Instead, he pointed to the work of Dean Radin, a prominent figure in the pseudoscientific field of parapsychology, and the Princeton Engineering Anomalies Research (PEAR) program, which has cited Dr. Radin’s research, as evidence.

    Randonautica claims that a 1998 PEAR experiment supported the idea that people can control random number generation with their thoughts. That study was published in the Journal of Scientific Exploration, which includes work about the paranormal, spirit possessions, poltergeists and questions about Shakespeare’s authorship. In the study, PEAR’s researchers wrote that the experiment was far from conclusive.

    “It looks like they saw some kind of correlation, but they admit that it was weak and it needed to have further research associated with it,” said Casey Schwarz, an experimental physicist and assistant professor at Ursinus College who reviewed Randonautica’s claims for this article. She said she did not know of any quantum system that could be influenced by human thoughts.

    Mr. Lengfelder dismissed such criticisms, stating that the app was not created to prove a hypothesis. “I would say it’s not some kind of academic science work,” he said. “We’re more like inventors than academic scientists.”

    An update coming in August will feature improved graphics and, Mr. Lengfelder said, a custom random number generator that would have a higher “rate of entropy.” “So technically our M.M.I. effects should be higher,” he said. Of course, as noted above, M.M.I. is a theory that is not supported by science.

    Daniel J. Rogers, a physicist who has worked with quantum random number generators, called Randonautica’s M.M.I. theory “completely absurd.”

    “There is no quantum physics here,” said Dr. Rogers, a founder of the Global Disinformation Index. “This is just people using big science words to sound magical. There is no actual science here.”
    ‘Do Not Go Randonauting’

    Randonauting became popular partly because of reverse psychology; young people approach it with a sense of foreboding. “Do not go randonauting” has become a popular title for videos.

    Some adults have expressed concerns about the app’s lack of safety precautions for children. Though Randonautica’s terms of use specify that anyone who is a minor must obtain parental consent to use the app, such consent is collected by email, making it easy for young users to bypass.

    Know and Tell, a child protection education program with the Granite State Children’s Alliance in New Hampshire, has posted on Instagram telling parents to keep young people off the app, or at least supervise their use.

    “It was very apparent that these were young teenagers that were going to undisclosed areas in the middle of the night,” said Jana El-Sayed, the outreach project manager for the Granite State Children’s Alliance. She described these circumstances as “a perpetrator’s dream.”

    #Randonautica #Fake_science #Culture_numérique #Mèmes

  • Was E-mail a Mistake? | The New Yorker

    The problem is that some of the computers might crash. If that happens, the rest of the group will end up waiting forever to hear from peers that are no longer operating. In a synchronous system, this issue is easily sidestepped: if you don’t hear from a machine fast enough, you can assume that it has crashed and ignore it going forward. In asynchronous systems, these failures are more problematic. It’s difficult to differentiate between a computer that’s crashed and one that’s delayed. At first, to the engineers who studied this problem, it seemed obvious that, instead of waiting to learn the preference of every machine, one could just wait to hear from most of them. And yet, to the surprise of many people in the field, in a 1985 paper, three computer scientists—Michael Fischer, Nancy Lynch (my doctoral adviser), and Michael Paterson—proved, through a virtuosic display of mathematical logic, that, in an asynchronous system, no distributed algorithm could guarantee that a consensus would be reached, even if only a single computer crashed.

    A major implication of research into distributed systems is that, without synchrony, such systems are just too hard for the average programmer to tame. It turns out that asynchrony makes coördination so complicated that it’s almost always worth paying the price required to introduce at least some synchronization. In fact, the fight against asynchrony has played a crucial role in the rise of the Internet age, enabling, among other innovations, huge data centers run by such companies as Amazon, Facebook, and Google, and fault-tolerant distributed databases that reliably process millions of credit-card transactions each day. In 2013, Leslie Lamport, a major figure in the field of distributed systems, was awarded the A. M. Turing Award—the highest distinction in computer science—for his work on algorithms that help synchronize distributed systems. It’s an irony in the history of technology that the development of synchronous distributed computer systems has been used to create a communication style in which we are always out of synch.

    Anyone who works in a standard office environment has firsthand experience with the problems that followed the enthusiastic embrace of asynchronous communication. As the distributed-system theorists discovered, shifting away from synchronous interaction makes coördination more complex. The dream of replacing the quick phone call with an even quicker e-mail message didn’t come to fruition; instead, what once could have been resolved in a few minutes on the phone now takes a dozen back-and-forth messages to sort out. With larger groups of people, this increased complexity becomes even more notable. Is an unresponsive colleague just delayed, or is she completely checked out? When has consensus been reached in a group e-mail exchange? Are you, the e-mail recipient, required to respond, or can you stay silent without holding up the decision-making process? Was your point properly understood, or do you now need to clarify with a follow-up message? Office workers pondering these puzzles—the real-life analogues of the theory of distributed systems—now dedicate an increasing amount of time to managing a growing number of never-ending interactions.

    Last year, the software company RescueTime gathered and aggregated anonymized computer-usage logs from tens of thousands of people. When its data scientists crunched the numbers, they found that, on average, users were checking e-mail or instant-messenger services like Slack once every six minutes. Not long before, a team led by Gloria Mark, the U.C. Irvine professor, had installed similar logging software on the computers of employees at a large corporation; the study found that the employees checked their in-boxes an average of seventy-seven times a day. Although we shifted toward asynchronous communication so that we could stop wasting time playing phone tag or arranging meetings, communicating in the workplace had become more onerous than it used to be. Work has become something we do in the small slivers of time that remain amid our Sisyphean skirmishes with our in-boxes.

    There’s nothing intrinsically bad about e-mail as a tool. In situations where asynchronous communication is clearly preferable—broadcasting an announcement, say, or delivering a document—e-mails are superior to messengered printouts. The difficulties start when we try to undertake collaborative projects—planning events, developing strategies—asynchronously. In those cases, communication becomes drawn out, even interminable. Both workplace experience and the theory of distributed systems show that, for non-trivial coördination, synchrony usually works better. This doesn’t mean that we should turn back the clock, re-creating the mid-century workplace, with its endlessly ringing phones. The right lesson to draw from distributed-system theory is that useful synchrony often requires structure. For computer scientists, this structure takes the form of smart distributed algorithms. For managers, it takes the form of smarter business processes.

    #Mail #Communication_asynchrone #Management #Culture_numérique

  • Rencontres : un tiers des Français pense qu’il est plus simple de se faire des amis en ligne qu’en réalité | CNEWS

    Le problème est toujours celui de la crédibilité de tels sondages quand on ne connaît pas les questions posées. Et puis, après avoir dit qu’internet permet une expansion de son moi réel, il fallait bien terminer sur les dangers et les prédateurs sexuels. On est sur Cnews, n’oublions pas.

    Les Français se sentent bien dans leur « moi » virtuel pour faire des rencontres, que celles-ci soient sentimentales, amicales ou professionnelles. Voici le constat dressé par une étude publiée ce lundi 29 juin par Arlington Research pour Kaspersky.

    Sans surprise, près de sept sondés sur dix (71,2 %) estiment que « l’usage des technologies numériques les aide à se sentir plus proches de leurs familles et amis », rapporte ce document que CNEWS s’est procuré en avant-première. Surtout, les Français sont 13,2 % à considérer que la technologie encourage à préférer des amitiés virtuelles à des relations réelles.

    « Un chiffre qui rejoint celui de nos voisins allemands (13 %), mais qui reste en deçà des Britanniques, pour qui cette proportion monte à 18 %. Toutefois, les Espagnols sont moins de 10 % à y croire. Ce qui reste finalement en adéquation avec les différences culturelles », souligne Tanguy de Coatpont, directeur général France de Kaspersky, spécialisé dans la cybersécurité.

    Mais les rencontres virtuelles sont aujourd’hui bien installées. Près d’un tiers des répondants (32,6 %) disent avoir « davantage confiance en eux et être plus sociables lors de rencontres virtuelles ». Une réflexion qui est même encore plus installée chez la jeune génération, toujours connectée. Ainsi, 40 % des jeunes issus de la génération Z et même 44 % des millenials y croient.
    Les célibataires moins intéressés que les familles

    Plus étonnant, l’étude démontre que les célibataires ne sont pas les champions des relations virtuelles. Au contraire, c’est dans le cercle familial que chaque membre du foyer préfère construire son « avatar » pour aller à la rencontre de nouvelles personnes. Ainsi, « 36,7 % des personnes vivant dans l’entourage d’enfants, qu’ils soient parents ou non, trouvent qu’il est plus facile de se présenter à leur avantage, via les réseaux sociaux », explique l’étude. L’idée pour les membres d’un même foyer serait ici d’échapper au regard des autres pour se construire une identité différente sur les réseaux et les forums en ligne.

    Le sondage souligne d’ailleurs que 49,2 % des personnes vivant seules « ne considèrent pas qu’il soit plus aisé ou rassurant d’offrir une représentation d’eux-mêmes de façon virtuelle ». « Vivre seul ne serait donc pas en soi un catalyseur de ces nouvelles "rencontres" virtuelles », ajoute le document.
    Des français peu méfiants

    Et si les Français semblent à l’aise avec leur double numérique, ils sont bien souvent trop confiants. « Ils n’ont pas conscience des risques qu’ils encourent. Or, le monde virtuel a des conséquences dans le réel », prévient Tanguy de Coatpont, qui invite d’ailleurs les internautes à se rendre sur le site gouvernemental cybermalveillance.gouv.fr. Tentatives d’escroquerie, rançonnage, cyberharcèlement, vol de photos intimes, pédophilie... « Il faut avoir conscience de tous les risques liés à Internet et avoir de bons réflexes, comme utiliser un logiciel pour gérer ses mots de passe et ne jamais avoir les mêmes, toujours avoir conscience que les personnes avec qui on discute peuvent mentir et si l’on n’a pas confiance à 100 % ne jamais rien donner. De même, après avoir rencontré une personne virtuellement, si vous décidez de la voir vraiment, prévenez toujours une personne de votre entourage avant votre rendez-vous. Enfin, si vous êtes victime n’hésitez pas à porter plainte auprès de la police ou de la gendarmerie. Il y a toujours un membre des forces de l’ordre formé pour prendre en charge les victimes de problèmes en ligne », rappelle Tanguy de Coatpont.

    #Culture_numérique #Comportement #Rencontres

  • Nos missions - Siana

    Organiser l’émergence et la diffusion des cultures numériques

    Siana, l’imaginaire des technologies est un centre de ressources pour les cultures numériques en Essonne. Il s’agit d’une proposition atypique qui rassemble – de manière conviviale et festive – la création artistique contemporaine, la recherche en sciences humaines, l’innovation technologique et le plus large public.
    Implantée à Evry depuis sa création en 2005, l’association touche l’ensemble du territoire Sud-Francilien et propose d’y organiser l’émergence des cultures numériques :

    Favoriser les coopérations locales entre les équipements culturels, les établissements d’enseignement supérieur et de recherche et les associations d’éducation populaire autour des TIC
    Inscrire sa programmation artistique dans les grands rendez-vous franciliens et internationaux consacrés aux arts numériques
    Construire de nouvelles modalités d’échanges entre les artistes et les scientifiques en favorisant l’égale prise en compte des sciences de l’ingénieur et celles des sciences sociales comme facteurs d’innovation et de progrès humain.

    Pour cela Siana développe 4 axes de travail complémentaires et transversaux :