thought for the day plus today’s spam special

and a bonus fun cheesy wotsit, just for good measure.

First, the thought:


Dilbert.com

Nice one. I ♥ Dilbert!!! Swoon…

Next the spam:

This is a standard spam message. Anyone who’s ever read a blog has seen the same one, and a couple of variants on it, sneakily creep into the actual comments. Anyone who’s ever run a blog has received about a bazillion of them. It passes machine natural-syntax-simulation tests, but not the tests of “educated individuals”: it’s talking about, not speaking; “ten minute phobia cure” seemed like it might almost fit in with thinking critically, critical thinking, etc.–reason your way out of the paper bag you’re currently breathing into to calm down…

Also–the list of links in the first part aside, Quackwatch and the rest–that was a post in part on fables, storytelling, trolls, and irony. Was this an ironic comment? Maybe irony is the key to the ten-minute phobia cure, and this is a recovering phobic who’s trundling around the net posting ironic comments, as part of their therapy? That would make quite a bit of sense.

But no. Here’s where their URL would have been going to:

Which might look bona fide, till you see what’s down the left-hand side and then run the start of that text about phobias vs. fears through Google:

Conclusion: copy-paste job. Unattributed. On a site that’s out to make money. Content theft. THIEVES! SCOUNDRELS!!

IN THE BIN WITH YOU!!!

And now for the second piece of spam. In response to another angle on beauty and ethics (part 1), the first in a series of posts about discussion-board rules, right to free speech and critical comment, responsibility to be a decent human being.

[…] MakeupAlley has had a few issues with rules recently. I’m not saying it’s a crisis, let alone The End Times. But there are problems; problems that aren’t unique to them. Most MUAers muddle along, and things kind of work out. Much as they would do in everyday life–rather than in life as a polis living in the nuclear age.

For any MUAers worried about such things, here are a few parallels, classic guidelines and how-to manuals from political science and international relations that might be useful–jurisprudence, justice, the just war, rules of conduct, and appropriate mannered sneakiness. […]

–followed by some suggested readings–the usual suspects, Machiavelli and Clausewitz, etc., etc., through to this one. As good an excuse as any to repost the suggestion, as it’s an audio piece. Bonus: you can read along with the text too, as a sort of spoken-word karaoke. If you like.

… and, last but not least, and to give some sort of sense of perspective to current affairs in the online world: no, not another of those crusty bearded guys, or a DWEM, but  a beautiful, stylish, immaculately-groomed lady. Aung San Suu Kyi. Her 2011 Reith Lectures (and the transcript thereof) may be found c/o here. Go listen.

Anyway. That spam?

(links to URL--Wikipedia article)

“Hotshot bald cop” makes sense, given this:

Plus the relevance of Psych, Revenge of the Nerds II, Star Trek, The X-Files, etc.

So–benefit of the doubt–that comment’s been let in. It passes the Ginger test: pertinent, intelligent, civil, courteous, polite. Must contain evidence of wits. Being witty a bonus.

For the record, yep, I’m critical. In that I’m pro-rules and pro-comment, and cos criticism can’t be criticism without rules. Otherwise there’s no way to weight things up, and weighing things up–scales of justice and all that, making decisions, reasoned choices, interpretation, judgement–is what criticism’s all about. Interpreting dreams too, integral part of web critique: dreams, fantasies, hallucinations, illusions, delusions…

Gratuitous bonus thingie du jour: sharing some joys of dictionary-reading. Fun with philology, c/o Project Perseus:

critic (1)

critic (2)

criticised / critical choice / end result of the critical process

criterion, or, how to get to κριτóς

what a critic does; yes, this is indeed all a bit circular.

Ah yes, and the cheese:

cheese + frying in oil + booze + BIG FLAMES!!! = metaphor for criticism. Also, delicious. Squeeze of lemon for an ascerbic finish, and as vitamin C is good for you and counterbalances all the grease and booze, without detracting from the joyous unctuous melting friedness. Mmm mmm good.

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