Clive Thompson in Praise of Online Obscurity | Magazine
Then, in 2007, she began a nifty project: tweeting recipes, each condensed to 140 characters. She soon amassed 3,000 followers, but her online life still felt like a small town: Among the regulars, people knew each other and enjoyed conversing. But as her audience grew and grew, eventually cracking 13,000, the sense of community evaporated. People stopped talking to one another or even talking to her. “It became dead silence,” she marvels.
Why? Because socializing doesn’t scale. Once a group reaches a certain size, each participant starts to feel anonymous again, and the person they’re following — who once seemed proximal, like a friend — now seems larger than life and remote. “They feel they can’t possibly be the person who’s going to make the useful contribution,” Evans says. So the conversation stops. Evans isn’t alone. I’ve heard this story again and again from those who’ve risen into the lower ranks of microfame. At a few hundred or a few thousand followers, they’re having fun — but any bigger and it falls apart. Social media stops being social. It’s no longer a bantering process of thinking and living out loud. It becomes old-fashioned broadcasting.
The lesson? There’s value in obscurity.
Socializing does not scale. Funny, we knew that didn’t we? It’s one of the lessons we learned in grade school.
I always enjoy, when it appears as if the camera floats.
How to Raise Racist Kids | GeekDad | Wired.com
And what are they learning? Here are a few depressing facts:
* Only 8% of white American high-schoolers have a best friend of another race. (For blacks, it’s about 15%.)
* The more diverse a school is, the less likely it is that kids will form cross-race friendships.
* 75% of white parents never or almost never talk about race with their kids.
* A child’s attitudes toward race are much harder to alter after third grade, but a lot of parents wait until then (or later) before they feel it’s “safe” to talk frankly about race.
Nice interactive 2009 holiday card
Crowfoot – Wikiquote
What is life?
It is the flash of a firefly in the night.
It is the breath of a buffalo in the wintertime.
It is the little shadow which runs across the grass and loses itself in the sunset.
– Crowfoot‘s last words, 1890
Beautiful. Reminds me of Japanese Death Poems.