Five “kolion” will buy you a bucket of potatoes in Shlyapnikov’s village of Kolionovo. / graibeard
The Baffler,  June 8, 2015

Daily Bafflements

Five “kolion” will buy you a bucket of potatoes in Shlyapnikov’s village of Kolionovo. / graibeard
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• A new currency minted by Russian farmer Mikhail Shlyapnikov has been declared “a threat” to the rouble by the Russian Central Bank. Five “kolion” will buy you a bucket of potatoes in Shlyapnikov’s village of Kolionovo. Shlyapnikov pointed out that his notes were inflation-proof and untarnished by war or exploitation, puzzling, “One peasant can’t bring down the banking system.” (Via the BBC.)

• Over at The New Republic, Phoebe Maltz Bovy reassesses the reasons behind the decline of the professor-student relationship, dismissing the recent, faddish idea that it’s “because today’s students are too squeamish, too far-left, or too consumerist to appreciate that model.” Instead, she argues, “It comes down to two factors: professionalization and…changes in the broader societal discourse.”

Baffler contributing editor Evgeny Morozov has this to say about “platform capitalism,” in The Observer: “A publishing industry ruled by Amazon and Facebook might produce lots of innovations—but is there any guarantee that it would actually produce any significant articles or books?” 

• On the sixty-sixth anniversary of the first publication of Nineteen Eighty-Four (in 1949), we bring you a bit of Google’s best Newspeak, from its page on “Information we collect.” The search giant lovingly names one of its categories (the one within which it admits to keeping internet users’ addresses and passwords on file) “Things that make you ‘you’.”

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