I’ve got a few thoughts about why Girls is the way it is. Not posting them until I’m at least four episodes into the show, and they’re pretty exclusively based around my high school years at a Brooklyn Heights private school, which were followed by time at an upstate New York liberal arts college.
Edit: Because I think it will related, there will also be comments regarding the #1 Movie in America last weekend, Think Like A Man. Which means this piece will not be up until I see that movie when I sneak into it after I see Avengers at the same theater, which is to say, some time in mid May.
But cloistered though it may be, “Girls” is a symptom, not the disease. The debate over the show is related to, but not a full picture of, greater debates about race and television, about representation and power, and about reception. The vigor of the response has far more to do with what’s not shown on television as a whole than what is or is not shown on “Girls,” and also with who’s chosen to pay attention.
Television is nowhere near diverse enough — not in its actors, its writers or its show runners. The problems identified by critics of “Girls” are systemic, traceable to network executives who greenlight shows and shoot down plenty of others. It’s at that level that diversity stands or falls.
And “Girls” is hardly alone in its whiteness. Far more popular shows like “Two and a Half Men” or “How I Met Your Mother” blithely exist in a world that rarely considers race. They’re less scrutinized, because unlike the Brooklyn-bohemian demimonde of “Girls,” the worlds of those shows are ones that writers and critics — the sort who both adore and have taken offense at “Girls” — have little desire to be a part of. White-dominant television has almost always been the norm. Why would “Girls” be any different?
”—Jon Caramanica’s think piece on the lack of diversity on television as a whole in the NYT, NAILS the right tones for the debate about Girls’ melanin deficiency.
What are the biggest challenges of designing/scaling for a social network with hundreds of millions of users?
The biggest challenge here is that you have no specific audience. Your audience is everyone. For mobile specifically, we have different types of people using different apps on different platforms on different sized devices. Wanting anyone in any situation to have the best possible experience is a really tricky problem to solve.
You’ll recognize her easily. She’s the one with a sharp mind of her own and tendency to speak what’s on it. She’s the one who has brought a classic novel with her to read in the doctor’s office waiting room so she isn’t stuck with People magazine. Her clothes are sensible most of the time and her…
By now I’m sure everyone has heard mention of Lena Dunham and her new show Girls, which premiered last Sunday night on HBO. I’ve followed and enjoyed Dunham’s work for a few years now, starting with her satiric web series Delusional Downtown Divas and moving on to her…
Friend of the blog Ruth Shannon has started a tumblr with a good piece on Lena Dunham’s Girls, which I have yet to see because I spread all that Sunday TV throughout the week, and have only gotten up to Mad Men so far.
“Capt. Coan would tell the field team … ‘They are f—–g animals. You make sure if you have to shoot, you shoot them in the head. That way there’s one story,’ ” said the retired detective.
The ex-cop, identified only as Undercover 7988, said Coan’s racist rant came before every search warrant executed in Brooklyn’s Brownsville, Bedford-Stuyvesant and East New York from 2008 to 2010.
I knew someone who worked in the NYPD who would say “all the blacks are animals and we treat them like that” so I’m not surprised by this at all. Honestly, at all. I don’t speak to that person anymore but I think many of the people in the NYPD are vile.
The Fight Club reference is a perfect reaction. Precise.
Maybe, just maybe, one of the reasons that Facebook bought Instagram was to have the Instagram team fix the facebook iOS app. Instagram, if it did nothing else, scaled beautifully. Facebook’s app is garbage, and even the globe-icon badge is never working properly.
Chat No More: Facebook's little mobile phone icon edition.
Before I knew it, I had quit using gchat 24/7, and I had somehow “unlocked” a new gear of my mind. And while that took almost no energy, it turned out that facebook, as per usual, was more difficult to log out of chat absolutely.
I made sure that my chat status was set to offline on all computers and iOS devices. But then, there was this little mobile phone icon that would show up next to my name in facebook chat. Do you want to kick this little icon out of your life too? Here’s how it worked for me.
After a lot of attempts to delete apps over and over again and click sign out, etc. nothing worked. Today I found the following instructions on a yahoo answers page, of all the places:
1) re-download the Facebook Messenger app
2) log in. Go to settings.
3) click “turn off notifications until 8 am”
4) log out.
5) if the welcome page says something like “log in as Your Name” click “not you”
6) exit the app.
7) use multi-tasker (double click the home button) to delete the app from the current processes.
“Did my position on this issue evolve over the last 12 months? I am not ashamed to admit that it certainly did. The more I became educated on the realities of these issues, the more I came to the realization that a mandated technical solution just isn’t mutually compatible with the health of the Internet.”—Former MPAA tech policy chief Paul Brigner speaking to CNET about SOPA. (via parislemon)