we are professional

9

Different press conference, same boredom.

Another thing I’m salty as fuck about re: youtube 

Youtubers as a collective will go ON AND ON about how this is their job and they make money doing it, and how they deserve respect (they do). But then the second any group begins to hold them to the same standards we would hold a professional in any other job, suddenly they’re screeching about how “GOSH IT’S JUST VIDEOS ON THE INTERNET CALM DOWN Y’ALL.” 

You can have it one way or the other. Either your profession deserves respect or you’re a bunch of yahoos on the internet and should be treated and derided as such. You can’t be serious professionals when you want respect and then helpless nobodies when the tides turn against you. Use some of that ad revenue on a PR guy if you’re that nervous about your inability to keep your mouth shut and not make racism the butt of your jokes. 

Like, I’ve got fucking two thousand readers and I treat my writing/business account with more seriousness than people who have three to sixteen million viewers. I make a tiny fraction of what they do and I treat my position with more dignity and my supporters and fans with more respect. 

If you’re going to be a celebrity, realize what that fucking means and be a fucking adult when people treat you like the actual celebrities with actual reach and influence that you are. And if this is going to be something you get paid for? That makes it a job. And I guarantee that if someone brings your manager at McDonalds a video of you shouting racial slurs at a customer? Your ass would be fired there, too. 

Gather round, children. Auntie Jules has a degree in psychology with a specialization in social psychology, and she doesn’t get to use it much these days, so she’s going to spread some knowledge.

We love saying representation matters. And we love pointing to people who belong to social minorities being encouraged by positive representation as the reason why it matters. And I’m here to tell you that they are only a part of why it matters.

The bigger part is schema.

Now a schema is just a fancy term for your brain’s autocomplete function. Basically, you’ve seen a certain pattern enough times that your brain completes the equation even when you have incomplete information.

One of the ways we learned about this was professional chess players vs. people who had no experience with chess.

If you take a chess board and you set it up according to a pattern that is common in chess playing (I’m one of those people who knows jack shit about chess), and you show it to both groups of people, and then you knock all the pieces off the board, the pro chess players will be able to return it to its prior state almost perfectly with no trouble, because they looked at it and they said, “Oh, this is the fifth move of XYZ Strategy, so these pieces would be here.”

The people who don’t know about chess are like, “Uh, I think one of the horses was over here, and maybe there was a castle over there?”

BUT, if you just put the pieces randomly on the board before you showed it to them, then the amateurs were more likely to have a higher rate of accuracy in returning the pieces to the board, because the pros are SO entrenched in their knowledge of strategy patterns that it impairs their ability to see what is actually there if it doesn’t match a pattern they already know.

Now some of y’all are smart enough to see where this is going already but hang on because I’m never gonna get to be a college professor so let me get my lecture on for a second.

Let’s say for a second that every movie and TV show on television ever shows black men who dress in loose white T-shirts and baggy pants as carrying guns 90% of the time, and when they get mad, they pull that gun out and wave it in some poor white woman’s face. I mean, sounds fake, right? But go with it.

Now let’s say that you’re out walking around in real life, and you see a black man wearing a white T-shirt and loose-fitting jeans. 

And let’s say he reaches for something in his pocket.

And let’s say you can’t see what he’s reaching for. Maybe it’s his wallet. Maybe it’s his cell phone or car keys. Maybe it’s a bag of Skittles.

But on TV and movies, every single time a black man in comfortable, casual clothes reaches for something you can’t see, it turns out to be a gun.

So you see this.

And your brain screams “GUN!!!” before he even comes up with anything. And chances are even if you SEE the cell phone, your brain will still think “GUN!!!” until he does something like put it up to his ear. (Unless you see the pattern of non-threatening black men more often than you see the narrative of them as a threat, in which case, the pattern you see more often will more likely take precedence in this situation.)

Do you see what I’m saying?

I’m saying that your brain is Google’s autocomplete for forms, and that if you type something into it enough, that is going to be what the function suggests to you as soon as you even click anywhere near a box in a form.

And our brains functioning this way has been a GREAT advantage for us as a species, because it means we learn. It means that we don’t have to think about things all the way through all the time. It saves us time in deciding how to react to something because the cues are already coded into our subconscious and we don’t have to process them consciously before we decide how to act.

But it also gets us into trouble. Did you know that people are more likely to take someone seriously if they’re wearing a white coat, like the kind medical doctors wear, or if they’re carrying a clipboard? Seriously, just those two visual cues, and someone is already on their way to believing what you tell them unless you break the script entirely and tell them something that goes against an even more deeply ingrained schema.

So what I’m saying is, representation is important, visibility is important, because it will eventually change the dominant schemas. It takes consistency, and it takes time, but eventually, the dominant narrative will change the dominant schema in people’s minds.

It’s why when everyone was complaining that same-sex marriage being legal wouldn’t really change anything for LGB people who weren’t in relationships, some people kept yelling that it was going to make a huge difference, over time, because it would contribute to the visibility of a narrative in which our relationships were normalized, not stigmatized. It would contribute to changing people’s schemas, and that would go a long way toward changing what they see as acceptable, as normal, and as a foregone conclusion.

So in conclusion: Representation is hugely important, because it’s probably one of the single biggest ways to change people’s behavior, by changing their subconscious perception.

(It is also why a 24-hour news cycle with emphasis on deconstructing every. single. moment. of violent crimes is SUCH A TERRIBLE SOCIETAL INFLUENCE, but that is a rant for another post.)

Paul and I had been together since he was fifteen and I was sixteen.
—  John Lennon, The Beatles: Anthology (317)

A lot of fake and misleading news stories were shared across social media during the election. One that got a lot of traffic had this headline: “FBI Agent Suspected In Hillary Email Leaks Found Dead In Apparent Murder-Suicide.” The story is completely false, but it was shared on Facebook over half a million times.

We wondered who was behind that story and why it was written. It appeared on a site that had the look and feel of a local newspaper. Denverguardian.com even had the local weather. But it had only one news story — the fake one.

We tried to look up who owned it and hit a wall. The site was registered anonymously. So we brought in some professional help.

We Tracked Down A Fake-News Creator In The Suburbs. Here’s What We Learned

Illustration: Fanatic Studio/Getty Images

Introducing Language Printables

My boyfriend and I are trying to save up so we can rent a new place and get married, so we have been working hard on a new project: Japanese Learning Printables, which we’re selling on Etsy. He’s a professional graphic designer and I have been teaching languages since 2003, so we decided to put our professional skills together and design some products that we hope Japanese learners will find useful.

Here’s a brief overview of what we’ve made so far:
Language Study Printables Pack 1

This bundle contains eight different printables in PDF format, both in A4 and letter size. Colour and black and white versions are included.

There are New Kanji blank sheets for you to practice kanji, with spaces for mnemonics, stroke order, on’yomi and kun’yomi, example sentences and more. Language Exchange sheets allow you to document new vocabulary and phrases, as well as cultural points as you participate in language exchange, meaning you get more out of your experience and can review afterwards. There’s also space for feedback for your partner and goal tracking. 

To increase productivity you can track your reading and study hours with these Reading Log and Study Log pages.

To keep track of new words or compounds you can use our New Vocabulary sheet, with space for readings, example sentences, so you can lean in context, and review tracking included.
Learning in real-life context is particularly difficult for self-studiers, so with this in mind we designed  this Grocery List printable, which you prepare at home, as you would a normal list, then take shopping so that you can use Japanese in context, even if you’re in a non-Japanese environment. 
Also included in the Language Study Printables Pack 1 are Anime Log and Drama Log trackers, where you can note down examples of words in context you encounter when watching Japanese TV, track where and when you heard them and monitor your reviews.

Beginners, Intermediate and Advanced Journal Prompt Printables
There are three different levels available individually, or you can buy the bundle and get all three at a discount.  Again the printables come in PDF format, including both A4 and letter size versions.

Designed with self-studiers in mind, these packs cover basic to advanced Japanese, including topics on your interests, memories, goals, as well as your opinions on a variety of current events, cultural points and social issues.

Each pack contains 31 unique language prompts, one for every day of the month.

  • Beginners Journal Prompts should be good for self-studiers who are at around JLPT N5/N4 level, or who are working through Genki I and II. Topics include writing about your environment and interests, whilst giving you opportunities to use beginner level grammar and vocabulary. An English translation cheat sheet is included to help you if you get lost. 
  • Intermediate Journal Prompts would best suit those at about JLPT N3/N2, or working through a textbook like Tobira.  Topics include writing for different purposes, talking about culture, re-telling anecdotes and expressing your opinions. An English translation cheat sheet is included to help you if you get lost.
  • Advanced Journal Prompts are designed for those at N2/N1 JLPT level, or beyond. They are written by a native Japanese speaker and are designed to help you create independent texts on engaging and relevant topics, whilst using advanced language skills such as persuasion, criticism, and expressing nuanced opinions that often appears at this level.

We really hope that you will take a look at LanguagePrintables on Etsy and favourite our store. We put a lot of thought into making these as useful as possible, and so we would very much appreciate your support through buying or simply reblogging this post.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read this post, if you have any questions, please feel free to ask. If you have a request for a language learning printable you’d like to see on our store in the future, then please let us know!

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Version 2.0 of this post (I, II)

nytimes.com
Carla Hayden Thinks Libraries Are a Key to Freedom
The 14th librarian of Congress on radical librarians and how information literacy can combat fake news.
By Ana Marie Cox

Do you think libraries can help in this epidemic of fake news and lack of trust in the media?

I think the good thing about the discussion is that there’s a discussion about what’s fake and what’s real. There’s an awareness that there is such a thing. Librarians have been pounding on this issue in a different way for a while — that just having computer literacy is great, but as information professionals, we’re always looking at what’s the most authoritative source for the information and teaching information literacy. It’s great to have all this stuff, but you need to teach how to use the library in schools. They need to be teaching information literacy as soon as the kid can push a button.

It seems as if you might need to teach information literacy to members of Congress.

If they start as children, I think there’s hope.

Spy AUs

•Ugh I hate teaching the trainees they’re so weak and annoying…. how the eff did you take me out? Could you teach me that??

•I know you’re pretty strong on the physical side of things, but holy eff dude, you are hitting that bag so hard that your KnUckLes are bLeEdiNg.

•Why am I tied up? Oh, you caught me? Yeah, let’s see how long that lasts for.

•We’re both professionals and we’re both super good at our jobs but hOw could we resist using our sneaking powers for evil and teaming up to play the most fRuStrAtInG game of hide and seek 

•We were on a mission together, something went wrong and the building exploded, you’re off telling our manager that everyone inside died, but I hear a cry so get your ass over here and help me get this cute little boy out before he dies!

•Epilouge to the above - we saved the kid, adopted him, and I’m trying to take care of him, but you taught him our insane spy skills so now I can never find him without climbing into the vents!