Punch. / Jamie
The Baffler,  December 29, 2015

Daily Bafflements

Punch. / Jamie
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• According to the Washington Post, Robert Atkinson of the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation is, touchingly, “worried that books by people such as [Baffler contributing editor] Astra Taylor will create a thought contagion that will infect Washington policymaking.” Here are some of her ideas, Washington policymakers, if you’re reading! Tech punditry is “simplification with an undercurrent of sexism”; there’s a difference between “‘free’ as in beer” and “‘free’ as in serfdom”; and imagine a world where finance “invested in the community instead of always sucking money out.” You’re welcome.

• Celebrities such as Kim Kardashian are now “Living and Breathing Intellectual Property,” by Silicon Valley decree. The “personalization of media” is an “enduring trend”: 

Games like Glu’s megahit Kim Kardashian: Hollywood and the recently released Katy Perry Pop are made to mirror real life rather than a fictional story, and will be constantly refreshed and extended indefinitely . . . We’re looking to turn these games into permanent services.

That’s right, “services.”

• Evgeny Morozov and Baffler editor in chief John Summers are in Salon, discussing love, Ayn Rand, and “drinking the liberal Kool-Aid of global philanthropy.”

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Further Reading

 April 4

Official oversight commissions tend to perform all of the trappings of democratic accountability while rarely resulting in lasting reform.