Best Of Lists Should Self-Destruct After One Year

Recently I was looking for a distraction-free writing system. I knew I had heard about many. But they all seemed to have simple, hard to remember names. (A related complaint: companies that name themselves words like “medium” so that when you’re trying to figure out how to do something you cannot search “medium format image” […]

Why I No Longer Do Internet Harassment Talks

A few years ago, I was doxxed by angry people on the internet. (I’m not going to rehash what happened. You’re reading this on a machine that has google.) After that, I started getting asked to do talks. How can we fix online harassment? How can individuals protect themselves? How can newsrooms better prepare themselves, […]

The Internet Is a Series of Lead Tubes

Like many of you, I suspect, I have a love hate relationship with the internet. I love the access it gives me to all sorts of information, and how it connects me with people I would have never been able to hear from before. I hate how it also contains spaces for people to easily […]

Big Brother Science

I’m eager to read Dave Eggers’ new book, The Circle. In this novel, a mega-tech company seeks to make the world as “transparent” as possible by encouraging people to place cameras everywhere and share the details of their private lives. The company declares that “ALL THAT HAPPENS MUST BE KNOWN” and “SECRETS ARE LIES.” In […]

Abstruse Goose: the Snoopable Internet

This subject is dear to me at the moment:  I’ve been working forever on a short, cheap news story on the National Security Agency.  One thing I’m learning — or I think I’m learning, with this stuff you can’t be sure — is more or less what AG  is saying, that an internet without back doors […]

Bell, Berners-Lee, and the Promise of New Technology

More than a century ago, Alexander Graham Bell recorded his voice on a waxed cardboard disc at a laboratory in Washington DC. This week, we got to hear this scratchy recording—and Bell’s voice—for the first time. Much of the recording involves Bell counting. He counts all the way up to 50, carefully enunciating each numeral. […]

Guest Post: When Your Evil Internet Twin is You

A few years back, when anyone Googled me, they were directed to a bunch of (and I apologize but there is just no nice way to say this, though those nice British editors at New Scientist tried) piss fetish sites. This had nothing to do with my predilections, which I must hasten to add don’t venture […]