Links and snippets

Eleanor Saitta on depression and group psychology among activists:

I watched people see-sawing back and forth between spectacular hopes for the future and deep despair — the sense that we can do anything, that the future is ours to remake as we wish, and the sense that there’s no way forward, no escape from this pit we’ve dug ourselves into. As people get together into larger groups, the despair seems to be shed as a function of group cohesion, leaving behind a hope that is frankly irrational until a sudden tipping point hits and it breaks.

Far from the first time Laurie Penny has written about anorexia, but one of the better ones:

[anorexics] lash out by doing only what is required of them, to the point of extremity. Work hard; eat less; consume frantically; be thin and perfect and good; conform and comply; push yourself to the point of collapse. It is no accident that eating disorders are often associated with obsessive overwork and perfectionism at school, in the workplace or in the home. We followed all the rules, sufferers seem to be saying – now look what you made us do.

Jay Owen on mobile phone privacy:

Your mobile phone leaks….

Take location. In exchange for offering Google Maps as a free service, Google extracts the price of knowing where your phone is at all times, even when the app isn’t running. Your home and work addresses are easy to identify (your habitual locations at 3am and 10am respectively). These can be cross-referenced against MOSAIC (market research company Experian’s consumer classification) or Zoopla house price records to transform location into income and demographic data, allowing users to be sold as micro-targeted ‘market segments’ of high value to advertisers.

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