So, here it is. The very last issue of Engaged Reading Time on Revue.
Will it be the last issue completely? To be honest, I haven’t quite decided. This evening I will make the backups I need and store them safely, ready to use if I decided to resurrect it elsewhere.
In the meantime, here’s where you can keep up with me:
- For journalism, audience and creator economy stuff, sign up for One Man & His Blog (20 years old this year!)
- For my personal life, you can subscribe to my notebook on Micro.blog
- For outdoorsy/family stuff, there’s Walking With Daddy.
For this final newsletter, I’ve gone back through my Revue queue, and found the older stories I’d stored to add to the newsletter that are still worth a read. Some of these links were added to my queue as long ago as 2016 (!). Yes, the year of Trump’s election and the Brexit referendum; it seems like a lifetime ago. You could look as what follows as a time capsule of the web over the past seven years. I hope you find something to enjoy in here.
Thanks for reading, and I hope to see you soon, either via one of the newsletters above, or through a revived Engaged Reading Time on another platform.
All the best,
The Dangers of Elite Projection
Let’s head back to 2017 for this is why the world is going to hell — the rich elite tend to assume that what is good for them is good for the rest of us. It’s not that they hate the rest of us, just that they literally don’t understand how the rest of us live.
Heavy Coffee Drinkers Want Coffee A Lot More Than They Actually Like It
THIS IS SACRILEGE AND I’M NOT LISTENING YOU CAN’T MAKE ME NAH NAH NAH NAH NAH.
The Secret to Enjoying a Long Winter
On a very, very cold Sussex day, it feels like we might all need to pay attention to this.
Of journalistic trade interest
Headless photos increase negativity towards obese people
News images that depict obese people from the neck down increase the readers’ negative attitudes towards the obese, a team of researchers found. In other words, find a more inventive way of illustrating those pieces.
How to Find Old Websites That Google Won’t Show
Google’s recency bias means some old sites are getting harder to find. Here’s some tips on how to reverse that.
The Gartner Hype Cycle is … hype. Don’t use it as an excuse.
If you’ve followed the tech market at all over the past couple of decades, you’re bound to have come across the Gartner hype cycle. It’s misleading in one very specific way: not all tech innovations make it all the way through the cycle.
Most just fail.
Steve Jobs in Kyoto
Steve Jobs was the public face of some of the biggest tech innovations of the 21st century. But privately, he was known for his passion for Japanese culture. He was particularly fond of Kyoto and over the course of 25 years, he got to know the ancient Japanese capital well.
Twitter's Forgotten Cofounder, Noah Glass
"I felt betrayed by my friends, by my company, by these people around me I trusted and that I had worked hard to create something with."
I wonder how he feels now.
A woman created an Instagram account to document the outfits her boyfriend 'hates,' and now she has more than 19,000 followers
Olivia Jackson, a 24-year-old marketing manager from London, runs the Clothes My Boyfriend Hates blog. She currently has more than 19,000 followers.(The blog still exists, although posting has slowed right down.)
Identity, self-esteem and self-compassion
A meditation on identity, self-esteem and the internet.
Meet the man keeping 8chan, the world's most vile website, alive
For every horrible site on the internet, somewhere there’s a group of people consciously keeping it running. And sometimes it’s just one man.
Pseudoscience is taking over social media – and putting us all at risk
In the years since this was written, this phenomenon has only gotten worse. Now it’s on TikTok, which we were just starting to take seriously in 2019.
Violence breaks out at bell-ringing competition in one of Devon's poshest villages
There was a bizarre bust-up in the belfry as an angry Noss Mayo resident barracked bell-ringers - it’s the Vicar of Dibly come to life.
The Internet Can Make Us Feel Awful. It Doesn't Have to Be That Way
What happened to the internet? Eli Pariser believes the internet makes us feel awful because of its lack of human dignity.
Why is the language of transhumanists and religion so similar?
The most avid believers in artificial intelligence are aggressively secular – yet their language is eerily religious. Why?
Research says there are ways to reduce racial bias. Calling people racist isn’t one of them.
The challenge for anti-racists looking for solutions in an America wracked by divisions in the post-Trump age.
The Industrial Revolution of Shame
Outrage is strange bait: It can feel wrong not to take it. But the seductive lure of outrage is one of the reasons that the internet has gone so very wrong.
The power of psychology
You’re Not Getting Enough Sleep—and It’s Killing You
At TED 2019, neuroscientist Matthew Walker argued that sleep deprivation is having a catastrophic effect on our health and safety—here are all the ways. When I saved this, we were only just emerging from baby-triggered sleep-deprivation.
Why People Are So Attracted to Charisma
Another seduction: when times are tough, societies are more attracted to charismatic individuals, whatever their other virtues — or lack of them.
The best weekend activities are most likely not the ones you're currently doing
Just because you didn’t work last weekend doesn’t mean you had a good weekend. The art of downtime that actually helps us is being lost.
The strange psychology of stress and burnout
While stress is emotional or mental strain that can come and go, burnout is the physical, mental emotional exhaustion that occurs after prolonged stress. It emerges over time and can be more difficult to recover from.
The Danger of Comparing Yourself to Others
When you stop comparing yourself to others and turn your focus inward, you start being better at what really matters: being you.
Glimpses of history
The Stowaway Craze
To go “viral” in the 1920s, all you had to do was stowaway on a ship and cross the Atlantic.
The Roman Roads of Britain Visualized as a Subway Map | Open Culture
A fascinating insight into how the Romans created the infrastructure of empire.
Finding North America’s lost medieval city
Cahokia was bigger than Paris—then it was completely abandoned. This is why.
Summer 1954: Kids out of school wreak havoc on the streets of London
For generations, kids saw streets and their rightful playground. This is roughly my parents’ generation. As a 70s kid, I played on the streets. My children? Almost never.
Abandoned States: Places In Idyllic 1960s Postcards Have Transformed Into Scenes Of Abandonment
A peek into pleasures past, and their slow descent into decay.
Loss of Vision: How Early 20th Century Photography Was Misjudged by Historians
Nicolette Bromberg dissects the practice by art historians of misconstruing the real reasons and intent of photographers of the production of early 20th century American photography.
The Last Days of Blockbuster Video
Here's what this article about the death throes of Blockbuster (meeting its end in Alaska of all places) made me think of:
A very long time ago, my first serious (read: live in) girlfriend and I used to go to Blockbuster in Whitechapel to pick a movie for a night in - sometimes ice cream, too. It was a lovely mix of a brief moment out together, a chance to walk and talk, and then the comfort of a night in. A set of experiences only those of us who experienced the 90s and early 00s as young adults will ever have.
And now it’s gone.
A group of violent otters is mysteriously attacking people and dogs in Alaska
Forget Cocaine Bear — this is the movie I want to see.
Border collies run like the wind to bring new life to Chilean forest
This is just cool: after the worst wildfire season in Chile's history, border collies are spreading seeds to regrow the forest by running, something they know how to do.
Maps of tree cover in Europe
Beautiful. And worrying, when you look at the UK, at least.
Bizarre ant colony discovered in an abandoned Polish nuclear weapons bunker
Scientists describe workers trapped for years in "a hostile environment in total darkness.” It’s almost an… alien ant farm.
People love watching nature on nest cams — until it gets grisly
It's the ultimate nature reality show: Baby birds' first months of life. But most cam operators won't intervene when tragedy happens -- and it happens pretty often. And people get really upset…
Love & (Weird) Sex
Dogpilling: the online theory that women are rejecting men to have sex with dogs
If the headline doesn’t encourage to click through, nothing I write here will.
Men and women interpret the sexual intent behind dating behaviours very differently
The findings could help explain problematic misunderstandings early in dating relationships.
Too tall to love: six foot and single
A very tall student I taught at City wrote this. This is very much her lived experience.
How will you have office romances and friendships when everyone’s working remotely?
This was written in 2019.
A year before the pandemic…
In the 70s and 80s, the jokes were all about how weird women are. As I’ve grown up and reached my middle years, I’ve realised that they were all wrong.
Us blokes are the weird ones. Let me prove it to you via the power of links!
Men do not enjoy debauchery of stag dos, study finds
Men succumb to peer pressure of ‘extreme shaming and humiliation’ despite feeling scared and degraded, report says
I Have ‘Average Dick Energy,’ and I’m Not Ashamed
The views expressed in this article do not necessarily correspond to the lived experience of the newsletter author.
What makes men send dick pics?
I have often wondered this. I’ve never done it and, indeed, have no desire to snap an image of my old chap for posterity.
The devotion of the human dad separates us from other apes
Among our close animal relatives, only humans have involved and empathic fathers. Why did our evolution favour the devoted dad? As a devoted Dad myself, I’m all behind this.
How Men Get Penalized for Straying from Masculine Norms
Yes, sexism hurts the guys, too. This looks at the research.
How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Embrace My ‘My Little Pony’ Obsession
I might be a bit of a brony. Thanks to too many hours watching My Little Pony with my daughters I can name both the Mane Six and the new Mane Five.
But a defy anyone to find a better song about human mob behaviour than the one coming next…
The Tinworth Foundation: a sad story
The decaying legacy of a distant relative.
And there we are. The end, for now, of an experiment started a little under seven years ago, right at the start of the new age of newsletters.
Farewell, Revue, victim of the Muskian cull. Thanks for making editorial newsletters easier all those years ago.
Farewell, readers. Until we meet again in your in-box, keep well.