Westview in the Rearview Mirror 

Kevin Smith and Marc Bernardin delivered a very fun interview of WandaVision director Matt Shakman on their podcast.

I highly recommend both WandaVision (and the interview). Maybe it’s the pandemic, but WandaVision which started a little slow, built into the emotional catharsis I needed rn.

Pay Your Way In Pain 

There’s a new St Vincent album coming out soon, Daddy’s Home, and the first track sounds great and looks like something from before MTV (video linked above). Annie Clark explains her work:

I would say it’s the sound of being down and out Downtown in New York, 1973. Glamour that hasn’t slept for three days…. I just want things that are fluid and wiggly and I want this music to look like a Cassavetes film’. I wanted it to be warm tones and not really distorted, to tell these stories of flawed people being flawed and doing the best they can. Which is kind of what my life is.

Very much looking forward to the rest.

We Worked Together on the Internet. Last Week, He Stormed the Capitol. 

Ben Smith has an article at The New York Times reflecting on his time at previous employer BuzzFeed working with someone who would become one of the January 6th insurrectionists.

He quotes his former BuzzFeed colleague Andrew Gauthier, who recently worked on the Biden campaign:

You always think that evil is going to come from movie villain evil, and then you’re like — oh no, evil can just start with bad jokes and nihilistic behavior that is fueled by positive reinforcement on various platforms.

The reporting on the insurrection has been a lot to digest, but contingency joins the center stage. Design choices made by social media platforms matter because contingency at scale isn’t so unknowable, instead it leads to a certainty of population level outcomes if not any individual’s destiny. Responsibility can be assigned. Fights over platform moderation and algorithms can’t devolve into technical or esoteric legal arguments driven by the platform owners. The consequences are too great.

View all of the posts in the archive or subscribe to the feed for Quips Pro Quo.

I put my stuff in asocialfolder and this website popped out.

Sign up today.