Saint Mary's College of California is offering a course called "Pranks: Culture jamming as social activism." One of the assignments is for the students to try to get a fake news story picked up by the news media. None of the students succeeded, but the class, taught by artist Ray Beldner, still sounds like it should be a requirement at all universities (and high schools). From Contra Costa Times:
Beldner said he wanted to teach students how to bring issues to the public eye using creative methods. His course syllabus defines "culture jamming" as "a resistance movement to the perceived hegemony of popular culture."
"These are serious-minded pranks," he said. "It's not just about people goofing around."
But journalists already have their hands full sifting facts from fiction without having to worry about deliberate misinformation, said Austin Long-Scott, who teaches journalism ethics at San Francisco State University. He compared the hoax to a computer virus.
"He is teaching students to try to screw up an important system that has enough trouble getting things right," Long-Scott said. "It's a destructive thing to do, and it violates a general societal ethic."
Destructive or not, Beldner said he would not stop his students from continuing to perpetuate a fictional issue, even if it led to an incorrect news story being published.
"We'd have to cross that bridge when we got to it," he said.
I asked Amy Parness, the co-founder of Sparkle Labs, maker of fantastic educational electronics kits, to write a Medium post about gender and the business of being a maker business person. Her terrific essay calls out the problems with “pink girly engineering kits.” From Medium:
Zero UI is the new term for “invisible interfaces”—what happens in the future when all the clicking and tapping and typing is history: “If you look at the history of computing, starting with the jacquard loom in 1801, humans have always had to interact with machines in a really abstract, complex way.” [Fast Company]
It’s time for a power upgrade — throw out that tired-out power strip and swap in this family-size USB charger, packed with 6 high-speed ports. With a built-in control chip, Kinkoo optimizes each port to ensure the fastest charging possible for all your devices. The Kinkoo is made from high-grade and durable materials so you […]
Watching Netflix, Hulu or other streaming services can unfortunately be difficult while traveling outside the US. Rather than bypass these restrictions with the help of a complex and slow VPN, choose a faster and simpler solution with Getflix. Instead of rerouting all your Internet traffic through a different server, this handy service only routes the […]
Shake, stir, and muddle your way to delicious homemade cocktails with this must-have bar set. Expect only the finest quality tools from MakersKit — enabling you to unleash your inner mixologist.Top 12 Favorite Things of 2014, Sunset MagazineQuart-size vintage-style Mason jar shakerRetro double jigger for accurate measurementsStrainer & spouts for a mixologist-style smooth pourHardwood muddler […]