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There must be in-groups whom the Lore protects but does not bind, alongside out-groups whom the Lore binds but does not protect.
While many of you are likely yelling “UGH WEDNESDAY” I’m yelling “UGH ROBERT MUELLER and the rule of law!” because Donald Trump will not be arrested or indicted today, and if you’ve been alive since 2015 you know deep in your heart’s crawlspace that he won’t face any real consequences for anything ever. Also not facing consequences are “former ‘Baywatch’ star Alexandra Paul and a co-defendant” who have been found not guilty of chicken theft:
The two activists took the chickens from a truck outside of Foster Farms' Livingston, California, plant in what they called an "open rescue."
Today: two chickens, tomorrow: four chickens. At this rate, in sixty one more days they’ll liberate… 18,446,744,073,709,551,615 chickens. That’s actually quite a lot of chickens.
Also Today in Normal Things:
Little Caesars’ Corncob Crust Pizza (“with a 2 liter of liquified butter”).
The Supreme Court chews on a poop-themed dog toy.
In San Francisco, A Couch Dreamed It Could Fly. What Happened Next Was Wondtacular.
The world may little note, nor long remember what I say here, but anything big noted or long remembered becomes Lore. But is our Lore under threat from a popular chat platform? For more on that, here’s Senior Lore Correspondent Allegra Rosenberg with:
“Lore” is the history, stories, and shared in-jokes that hold communities together at every scale from civilization to text thread. Web3 thinky-thoughts guy Toby Shorin’s Other Internet defined Lore as “in-group knowledge that becomes the backbone of subculture,” and archival crusader Jason Scott described it as “the carved step in an otherwise impossible-to-scale mountain[.]”
Scott is both personally and professionally obsessed with Lore, and right now he’s very concerned about Discord, which he’ll have you know isn’t an archive but a precarious chat framework with a “pile of bones worn into the foundation… telling us it was built on land that will very occasionally flood to great catastrophe.”
Scott argues for stopgaps to correct some of the transience of Discord-based Lore. I agree with that call, but it doesn’t quite recognize how the ephemerality of Lore and the risk of losing great swathes of information is part of the druggy rush of it all.
Lore feels good. Creating it, documenting it, and (re)discovering it is the addicting rush that drives fan wikis and overburdened Discords the web over. Legendary deleted tweets like “fucking the Text man for Texts” now only exist as screenshots; copyright-stricken YouTube poops circulate on Tumblr and TikTok; samizdat PDFs of deleted fanfic are shared in private backrooms, sought by those who dream of finding them again.
Lore is alive, which means it can die, which means it can always be reborn.
—Allegra Rosenberg is the long arm of the Lore.
Allegra most recently newslettered with Garbage Day, and plans to join us here on Wednesdays, when I struggle with the midweek discourse lull. Welcome! If you enjoy her work please subscribe so I can continue to pay her. If you don’t enjoy her work, please subscribe and tell me about it in the Tabs Discord, which has a well-developed and fairly well-documented Lore.
Media startup you haven’t had a chance to forget about yet The Messenger acquires media startup you have already forgotten about Grid News, according to Max Tani. But the followup makes it sound more like IMI, the owner of Grid News, has invested in JAF, the owner of The Messenger? Who knows, none of this matters probably.
And Twitter Safety invented the concept of “non-toxic slur Tweets.” Things are going just great.
…if somebody stops me in the street and says, “I like your Guardian column,” I just want to kiss them, because you start off with a blank page, if you can get anything down, but anyone actually reads to the end of, and then tells you they like it, I just think, “Thank you. Thank you so much.” I say, “You don’t know how much that means.”
If you read all the way to here, thank you. Thank you so much.
Today’s Song: Jem, “Just a Ride”
I forgot how much fun it is to edit guest contributors. Thanks to @th0ma5 from the Discord for supplying an ideal Wednesday jam for our song today. I’m out of pocket till tomorrow AM but let’s circle back and touch base then. Ta!