Men, and Other Crimes

ChumSPAC, Michael Scott, the NYT's endless social media clownshow, and I think I made up a word?

The best thing I read this weekend was Namwali Serpell’s “Pixar’s Troubled ‘Soul’,” in The New Yorker. The first link is usually the most clicked (yeah, I see you) so just go read it.

For a split second, the film cracks, yawns open, and shows us what it’s been working so hard to conceal: the limbo of black existence, the history of the slaveship hold, the terror of death at the hand of a mistaken cop.

Also very good was Robert P. Baird on Laurene Powell Jobs’s Emerson Collective, for CJR:

Emerson is sometimes described in the press as a “philanthropic LLC,” as though its primary purpose were to give money away. That characterization is a testament to how effectively Emerson has managed to swathe its image in a benevolent haze. You’ll almost never see it referred to as a “company”—even though that’s what it is, in both legal and practical terms. 

Kaitlin Phillips’s media diet in “Why is this interesting?” leaves the titular question unanswered. Public equity markets love this one weird trick for going public (Chumbox + SPAC = Chumspac). Bertrand Fan watched TENET on his toilet, but not the way you think. New aesthetic just dropped: "Ballet Mécanique" edited into a music video by an AI. Tenacious Kiwi gumshoe Hayden Donnell fact-checks Amanda Palmer, for The Spinoff: “Did everyone spontaneously applaud Amanda Palmer in a Havelock North cafe?” Teach a college seminar on the TV series “Halt and Catch Fire” for no reason, using this free syllabus by Ashley Blewer. Letter of Recommendation: Sassy Magazine. Alex Danco’s Michael Scott Theory of Social Class ruined my life: “The higher you ascend the ladder of the Educated Gentry class, the more you become Michael Scott.”

The New York Times’s endless clownshow of a social media policy struck again last week, with freelance live page editor Lauren Wolfe fired after tweeting “Biden landing at Joint Base Andrews now. I have chills.” Was she fired because of that tweet? The Times doesn’t “get into the details of personnel matters” except apparently in this particular case to strongly imply that it was not due to the tweet. But Wolfe was already on the Ben Shapiro / Glenn Greenwald axis of harassment, so the impression that the Times once again folded to a bad-faith right-wing smear campaign is difficult to avoid. Yashar Ali reported that there were “other tweets Wolfe was warned over,” and Vanity Fair’s Joe Pompeo reports today that “according to someone with knowledge of the phone call in which Wolfe was let go, she was told that her name and the Times’ name were in headlines all over the place, and ‘we can’t have that.’” So I guess the best-case explanation here is that a freelance editor with no contract or employment protection whatsoever is nevertheless subject to deep probing by the Times’ social media arbitrariat. At press time Andy Mills, Glenn Thrush, Andy Mills, Michael Barbaro, Andy Mills, Bret Stephens, and Andy Mills were all still comfortably employed at the Times, and Lauren Wolfe was reluctantly sharing her Venmo.

Today in Politics:Sarah Huckabee Sanders to Run for Arkansas Governor.”

Today’s Song: “Solidarity,” by Rancid, for the New Yorker Union.

~ I've been trying to get people to call me Sunny T, cause I got the good tabs the kids go for ~

But people keep calling me K5 Alive, because the last site didn’t really die. I just lied. Deep cuts for the real `heads down here, I know it doesn’t make any sense. Don’t worry about it.

Kyle Chayka @chaykak
Unfortunately this was me
nytimes.com/2021/01/19/mag… https://t.co/gJsB0jScsW

New New York Times @NYT_first_said

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