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altering views


Staff member
Feb 16, 2024
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On the last Friday of each month, without any assistance from Gen AI, I curate some of the observations and insights that were shared on social media. I call these Friday’s Finds.

“Working from home 1 day a week cuts carbon by 2%. 2-4 days up to 29%. Full-time 54%.”Anthropocene Magazine

“German is so efficient. You say ‘Fachkräftemangel’ for ‘Companies not paying enough to attract suitable candidates and then complaining to the state to worsen the work environment for everyone so their shitty jobs find candidates again.’ what a beautiful language.”@kaia

‘Stockholm Syndrome’ — via Andreu Casablanca

The phrase “Stockholm Syndrome” was invented by a police psychiatrist to discredit a female hostage in a 1973 bank heist who criticized the police … The psychiatrist who invented it, Nils Bejerot, never spoke to the woman he based it on, never bothered to ask her why she trusted her captors more than the authorities. More to the point, during the Swedish bank heist that inspired the syndrome, Bejerot was the psychiatrist leading the police response. He was the authority that Kristin Enmark – the first woman diagnosed with Stockholm syndrome – distrusted.

AI is fundamentally ‘a surveillance technology’ with @Mer_edith

“You know, you walk past a facial recognition camera that’s instrumented with pseudo-scientific emotion recognition, and it produces data about you, right or wrong, that says ‘you are happy, you are sad, you have a bad character, you’re a liar, whatever.’ These are ultimately surveillance systems that are being marketed to those who have power over us generally: our employers, governments, border control, etc., to make determinations and predictions that will shape our access to resources and opportunities.”

Three years of running a peer learning network for 135+ organisations: what have we learnt? via Benjamin P. Taylor

• Communities of practice (COPs) don’t have to look the same to be meaningful.
• Having facilitators to coordinate the network was essential for this to work.
• In a network, it’s easy to underestimate the power of 1:1 engagement …
• We tried to use every opportunity we had with the network to gather insight and data on what people wanted from the network …
• There is huge appetite for 1:1 coaching.
• If you offer to pay for peoples’ travel and accommodation it makes it much more possible for people to attend.
• A network like this can be an amazing temperature check of what is “live” in the sector

Naomi Klein’s ‘Doppelganger’ by Cory Doctorow

How did so many hippie-granola yoga types turn into vicious eugenicists whose answer to “wear a mask to protect the immunocompromised” is “they should die”?

The PastelQ phenomenon – the holistic medicine and “clean eating” to QAnon pipeline – recalls the Nazi obsession with physical fitness, outdoor activities and “natural” living. The neoliberal transformation of health from a collective endeavor – dependent on environmental regulation, sanitation, and public medicine – into a private one, built entirely on “personal choices,” leads inexorably to eugenics.

Once you start looking for the mirror world, you see it everywhere. AI chatbots are mirrors of experts, only instead of giving you informed opinions, they plagiarize sentence-fragments into statistically plausible paragraphs. Brands are the mirror-world version of quality, a symbol that isn’t a mark of reliability, but a mark of a mark, a sign pointing at nothing. Your own brand – something we’re increasingly expected to have – is the mirror world image of you.

“You know, the very powerful and the very stupid have one thing in common. They don’t alter their views to fit the facts, they alter the facts to fit the views, which can be uncomfortable if you happen to be one of the facts that needs altering.”
—Tom Baker (as the fourth doctor) —Doctor Who, The Face of Evil — written by Chris Boucher
Doctor Who - graphic image of the fourth doctor with scarf
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