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How social media took us from Tahrir Square to Donald Trump - MIT Technology Review
Rather, the problem is that when we encounter opposing views in the age and context of social media, it’s not like reading them in a newspaper while sitting alone. It’s like hearing them from the opposing team while sitting with our fellow fans in a football stadium. Online, we’re connected with our communities, and we seek approval from our like-minded peers. We bond with our team by yelling at the fans of the other one. In sociology terms, we strengthen our feeling of “in-group” belonging by increasing our distance from and tension with the “out-group”—us versus them. Our cognitive universe isn’t an echo chamber, but our social one is. This is why the various projects for fact-checking claims in the news, while valuable, don’t convince people. Belonging is stronger than facts.
socialMedia  politics  activism  communication  ArabSpring  Egypt  TahrirSquare  Tunisia  Syria  Iran  Twitter  MubarakHosni  authoritarianism  power  control  ObamaBarack  targeting  technoUtopianism  bigData  misinformation  polarisation  NSA  security  Facebook  Google  monopolies  YouTube  algorithms  attention  insults  TrumpDonald  USA  Russia  trolling  interference  corruption  accountability  filterBubble  surveillance  platforms  personalData  inequality  precarity  insecurity  dctagged  dc:creator=TufekciZeynep  recommendations 
august 2018 by petej
Stephen Miller: Trump’s Right-Hand Troll - The Atlantic
In his 2017 book, Dangerous, Yiannopoulos laid out the ideology undergirding his project. He described his mission as “finding boundaries and raping them in front of you,” and promised his followers, “I’ll teach you how to cause the same sort of mayhem I do in defense of the most important right you have in America: the right to think, do, say and be whatever the hell you want.” In this scorched-earth view of the culture wars, the goal is not to advance conservative arguments in a provocative way; the provocation itself is the point. “Liberal tears” are the coin of the realm, and giving offense is a form of conquest.

But if any slur or slander can be excused as ironic under the guise of combating political correctness, it becomes all but impossible to distinguish genuine extremists from those impersonating them for effect. According to the Anti-Defamation League, incidents of white-supremacist propaganda at colleges increased by 258 percent from the fall of 2016 to the fall of 2017.

What’s more, the journey from winking provocateur to racist ideologue might be shorter than many imagine. You start out with the goal of provoking the left—and, well, what’s more provocative than posting a racist meme on the internet? But with each new like and upvote, an incentive structure forms, a community coalesces, an identity hardens. Before long, the line between performance and principle is blurred beyond recognition, your “true” beliefs buried under so many layers of irony that they’ve been rendered irrelevant.
MillerStephen  USA  politics  TrumpDonald  trolling  provocation  immigration  nationalism  alt-right  DukeUniversity  YiannopoulosMilo 
may 2018 by petej
Goodbye, Pepe | Angela Nagle
At the risk of putting my own work out of date, I believe that chapter of the alt-right story that my book was about—the anonymous online trolling culture, the constant evasions and ironic styles, the hodge-podge of disparate groups united by the “anti-PC” crusade—is over and a new one has begun. The alt-right in the strict sense will now become more isolated, more focused and unambiguous—and perhaps more militant.

But the part of the movement that is willing to go all the way is still very small. The most popular figure in U.S. politics right now is Bernie Sanders—a Jewish socialist—while Trump’s popularity is at an all-time low. A purely oppositional politics to the far right will be a game of eternal whack-a-mole if the only vision of the future to be found in the aimless desert of meaning created by the political establishment is the nightmarish Silicon Valley model of modernity. The creation of a politics that offers something meaningful, beautiful, hopeful, new, and utopian is the project for which there is no shortcut. To take the bigger picture from this sorry story, it should be the job of our generation to create it.
USA  politics  Charlottesville  alt-right  counterculture  transgression  trolling  radicalisation  neo-Nazism  murder  HeyerHeather  FieldsJames  YiannopoulosMilo  Breitbart  BannonStephen  centrism  TheLeft  SpencerRichard  nihilism  alienation  identity  masculinity  dctagged  dc:creator=NagleAngela 
august 2017 by petej
Angela Nagle’s ‘Kill All Normies’: The Alt-Right and 4chan
Nagle, of course, is herself on the political left, and Kill All Normies reflects her frustrations with intra-left political disputes of the last five years, which have tended to pit identitarians against a more explicitly socialist left. At one level, Nagle suggests that there was a symbiosis between the social-justice left and the alt-right: The left’s tendency to focus on racial and sexual identity while explicitly demonizing privileged groups — notably straight white men — may have pushed members of these groups into the arms of the alt-right, while the stronger the alt-right became, the more it confirmed the social-justice left in the belief that its critics, even those on the left, were either Nazis or Nazis’ useful idiots. But aside from such direct symbiosis, Nagle suspects — rightly in my view — that the real damage of the “Tumblrization of left-politics” may have been to spur a “brain drain from the left,” as people fled from a political brand increasingly associated with hysteria, witch-hunting, and intolerance of dissent.
NagleAngela  alt-right  4chan  misogyny  anti-feminism  trolling  counterculture  nihilism  transgression  SpencerRichard  YiannopoulosMilo  Internet  alienation  socialMedia  TheLeft  identityPolitics  intolerance  politics 
august 2017 by petej
I’m With The Banned — Welcome to the Scream Room — Medium
"My new Spectator friend is as bewildered as I am by the way Americans take Milo and his ilk seriously, by their willingness to take pride in performative bigotry and call it strength. It works. It sells. It’s the unholy marriage of that soulless debate culture that works so well in Britain, transplanted to a nation with no social safety net and half a billion guns. It works, in part, because of the essentially cult-like nature of U.S. culture and the structured ignorance that accompanies it. America is a nation eaten by its own myth. The entire idea of America is about believing impossible things. Nobody said those things had to be benign."
YiannopoulosMilo  TheRight  trolling  politics  Twitter  socialMedia  misogyny  bigotry  performance  USA  culture  dctagged  dc:creator=PennyLaurie 
july 2016 by petej
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