A trade journal of a still-emerging field, written by Adam Tinworth.

A swath of prominent American literary figures are worried by the support for Charlie Hebdo after the shootings earlier this year. but their arguments don’t always tarry with reality:

Elsewhere, the #JeSuisCharlie brigades were admonished for affiliating with an anti-Arab magazine whose “staff was white,” a point not contested by editor Moustapha Ourrad because he had annoyingly just been murdered by religious psychopaths. Nor did Zineb El Rhazoui protest, likely because she was too busy mourning her dead friends and cobbling together the newspaper’s first post-bloodbath issue.

As a happily married, middle-aged father, Tinder is one part of social media that I’m aware of, but haven’t viscerally experienced – for obvious reasons.

So, this piece on Tinder from a woman’s point of view is a fascinating read:

And, for all its faults, I still find Tinder delightful. I’m now 29, and I set my upper age limit to a reasonable 37, my lower age limit to a rather scandalous 23. No one can address me without my consent, which I can withdraw with an unceremonious “Unmatch” at any time. And when I encounter a blank profile or a grainy photo or a man who is lying through his teeth about his age, I am reminded of those unfocused pictures and the entitled rage of that first encounter. It is a special joy to left-swipe such profiles back into the bowels of Hades from whence they came.

If the Medium version of Matter continues to produce good stuff, I might eventually stop mourning for the “long form science journalism” version of it.

Interesting exploration of the pseudo-relationships with celebrities that social media enables:

Spitzberg describes how a fan might respond to something like a celebrity tweet and then, days later, see an unrelated tweet from the same celebrity and read meaning into it because they’ve been thinking about the star in the interim period. “This phantom reciprocity may be one of the reinforcing aspects of the sequential and ongoing process of receiving messages from the celebrity,” he says, “which despite going to thousands, can feel uniquely responding to that fan’s devotion.”

It’s almost too obvious to say that one of the appeals of social media is that it puts updates from celebs on a par with updates from your friends. This piece goes a long way to explore the dynamics beyond that.

Pinterest is the quiet powerhouse of the social media world, driving more traffic than, say, Twitter, yet receiving much less attention. This change should make things more interesting:

The company says developers who integrate Pinterest sign-in will be able to offer users “a personalized, curated experience based on their boards and Pins.”

Source: Pinterest Introduces Developer Platform to Make Pins Interactive

The Daily Tar Heel

Here’s a very interesting piece from a student newspaper editor in the US:

My peers are interested in reading news, but they have no loyalties whatsoever about where it comes from. You can be the greatest columnist in the world, but it will be tough to garner a strong following from millennials.

Even some of my closest friends refused to pick up the newspaper I spent dozens of hours on each week. They’d rather get the day’s news from many different sources by scrolling through their Twitter feed.

This dichotomy is one of the most challenging things about teaching some journalism students today. They come in with a love for – and a focus on – the newspaper (or magazine) as a printed object, even as they are aware that their contemporaries – in the main – don’t consume news in that way.

There’s a distinction between loving journalism, and loving a printed product, and some students don’t see that. It’s going to be a tough career for them if they don’t wake up to it.

Danger: influencer at work

Beware the hype of the social media gurus:

So what we have here are ignorant people (Vaynerchuk, Brogan, Kawasaki, and friends) telling big brands and agencies to dump their money into unproven platforms, or platforms with really shady metrics that they can totally fudge and claim their successful to journalists who don’t really know better. A tech blog may know to call out Vaynerchuk’s portfolio company, MeerKat, for spamming Twitter in order to grow their service, but other publications like AdAge won’t. And guess which one of those publications the brands and advertisers are reading?

This is a pretty harsh attack on some big names, but it makes some valid points. There’s a group of “influencers” who make the point of hyping the new, shiny thing. But as the death of Secret makes clear, initial hype has no correlation with long-term success.

Social media remains a social tool, and like all social interactions, take a while to establish into useful patterns. And some of them will turn out to be fads.

We have more than enough “social media influencers” hyping away. We need more people applying critical thinking and patience to these tools over time.

I’ve finally got around to restoring the link to get One Man & His Blog by e-mail. (It’s via MailChimp, so you get lots of control, and can unsub in seconds).

And if you’re thinking “hell, yes, sign me up!”, well, here’s the form:

Slightly terrifying look into life as a toddler social media celebrity:

Scout the City is touted as fashion’s first “kids’ influencer” blog, its heroine a pint-sized social media giant in the age of online celebrity. London—or “Scout,” her public persona—is a “three-year-old tastemaker,” says her site, “currently obsessed with ballet, Cinderella shoes, and playing dress-up.” She’s a totally typical toddler, except that when she wears Cinderella shoes, it’s down the runway at Kids Fashion Week, and when she plays dress-up, it’s for sponsored photo shoots with brands like Stella McCartney. (The ballet is just regular kid ballet.)

I feel guilty enough every time I pop a photo of Hazel on Instagram. I can’t even imagine pushing her into the public eye like this.

It’s slight sobering to think of this in the context of one of the most famous lifestyle/mommy bloggers, Heather Armstrong aka Dooce, quitting the business:

But what makes this livelihood glaringly different are not only the constant creative strains of churning out new and entertaining content—content we cannot delegate to anyone else because our audiences read our stories for our particular voice and perspective—but also the security systems we’ve had to set up as an increasingly more diverse group of people throw rocks at our houses with the intention of causing damage: passersby, rubbernecks, stalkers, even journalists. We have separate security systems for those who take every word and decision we share and deliberately misinterpret it, disfigure it to the point of it being wholly unrecognizable, and then broadcast to us and to their own audiences that they have diagnosed us with a personality disorder.

The long-term impact of exposing your life to the internet are only just becoming apparent to the earliest practitioners of the art. And that’s a lesson the rest of us should learn from.

If you didn’t get the headline allusion: