Book Review: So You’ve Been Publicly Shamed by Jon Ronson

(5/5 stars) This is an exploration of shame as a punishment, as a fundamental human impulse, as a force for good and bad. Ronson goes into a little bit of the history of how shame has been used in the past, but focuses especially on how shame functions in our internet-based society today.  To wit, he explores several contemporary case studies in shaming.

This book functions in some ways as a collection of essays rather than a structured exploration of ideas. As such, there are points where he pursues aspects of shame that seem to be a digression from the core theme, for example the parts about Radical Truth and humiliation paraphilia.  Those parts don’t make the book less interesting, but readers should be warned: you probably won’t come away with any strong conclusions about what can be done about internet lynch mobs. 

In sum, this book is funny and thought-provoking. I highly recommend it.

ATTN PARENTS!

Be on the lookout for this new teen craze. If you don’t talk to your children about astrophysics, someone else will. And, trust me, this is not something you want them learning on the streets! Source: Dank Matter Astrophysics Memes on Facebook

Security Update

Last night, I received an email from Facebook saying that I had registered using a particular email address.  I checked out everything with the email (all the links were directed to Facebook.com, the sender was Facebookmail.com [I verified that that’s Facebook’s sending domain], and the text of the email as Read more…