Donald Trump piñata. / Mike Licht
The Baffler,  September 15, 2015

Daily Bafflements

Donald Trump piñata. / Mike Licht
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• Hey, writers, what comes up when we Google your name? “The new first-person economy” writes Laura Bennett, “incentivizes knee-jerk, ideally topical self-exposure.” The result? “On its face, the personal-essay economy prizes inclusivity and openness; it often privileges the kinds of voices that don’t get mainstream attention. But it can be a dangerous force for the people who participate in it.” You don’t say! Whether it’s rape, incest, or fur balls found in your vagina, there’s nothing our media overlords love more than peddling your “dramatic nonfiction narrative in the form of a personal journey,” as Eugenia Williamson wrote in Baffler no. 20.

• Jonah Peretti doesn’t want an adversarial relationship with his employees at Buzzfeed—so please don’t unionize! That said, he reserves the right to terminate writers’ contracts “without cause,” writes Colette Shade. 

• British people can, if they volunteer a ton of personal information, find out if their equivalent of the NSA spied on them—flock here!

• Did Roland Barthes unwittingly reveal the mythology behind Donald Trump?

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Further Reading

 June 22

For the Atlantic, actual political agency, it seems, is a lesser virtue than the civic jolt proffered by a “mediating function.”