39 Comments

Great short notes about a lot of important trends, including the link to erotic desensitization, which is not primarily a luxury belief as are so many bad beliefs.

Tho “eternal adolescence” seems more the true previously never satisfied desire to have both freedoms: to act (as adults) and yet not be responsible (as are kids). What so many want so much. The consumerism is related, but it’s more that rich folk get to purchase more of what they want and get used to such a buying happiness lifestyle, despite its frequent delusional aspects.

But is this place Default Friend or Default Wisdom? (Or both?)

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On "taking online speech literally". You have flagged many of the mind-bending distortions inherent in mass media (exponentially turbo-charged by social media). Here are a couple of others:

* click-of-a-button digital media affords such a disproportionate voice to the one-track-minded, politico-activists, mouthy obsessives, narcissists and permanent malcontents. Well balanced people tend to be less media obsessed.

* in crude terms, the invention of the search engine was a massive boon for people with curiosity about the world beyond their direct experience. But then, after a few golden years, social media came along to reassert the groupthink tendency.

I discussed these things in this piece......https://grahamcunningham.substack.com/p/non-binary-sibling-is-entertaining

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Do you have a piece on the eternal adolescence idea?

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Your thesis on emo is 🎯

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Thank you! I wish the Blaze would unlock my piece LOL

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Apr 3Liked by Katherine Dee

As someone who saw you for the first time on Tucker, I was drawn to your insight, intelligence, and realness. Following you here has been amazing. I've learned about so many things I knew nothing about, and it has truly been a fascinating journey. Keep doing what you're doing. You have a reader/listener for life here.

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Thank you Karen!! I treasure all of your comments, always a pleasure to see you here <3

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Apr 3Liked by Katherine Dee

Here's one.

Memes are ads, with the product obscured.

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Love that

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Apr 2Liked by Katherine Dee

I swear your blog was made for me. Almost all of these topics are things I've noticed and/or been invested in and wondered if anyone else saw it the same way I do.

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Thank you! That's high praise.

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This is very good.

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Ty <3

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Apr 2Liked by Katherine Dee

"The Internet is a place." It is a strange place. Our friends and family behave like celebrities, and celebrities behave like our friends.

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I am desperately trying to expand on this thesis

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Kath you are older than me, but wouldn't anime be the blueprint, not emo?

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Super abridged article, but I explain it here: https://www.theblaze.com/return/long-before-tiktok-social-media-drove-mental-health-fears

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Curious about your take on anime though?

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Probably just my bias, but I see it as the out-growth of earlier nerd communities in the 90s and the adoption of those groups to the internet. Provided cosplaying existed back then, I would point to that as proof too. And even the point on gender fluidity is more strong here than emo imo. The only part that fails is probably the adoption of social media, and the dynamics around that. I would give that to the emos. But now we're starting to go back before I got on the net c.a. 2007.

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Apr 3·edited Apr 3Author

Oh no--gender fluidity is definitely not stronger than emo. Read the piece! The development of the subcultures are pretty different, but the framing I have is a bit different too.

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Apr 2Liked by Katherine Dee

Without necessarily sharing your political affinities, I'm curious how this understanding of identity shapes your political positions. Also curious as to your takes on the psychological factors that go into fandoms/identities/etc before a person even hits the Internet.

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Apr 3·edited Apr 3Author

I don't believe there's a "before" anymore, though maybe I need to meditate on that more.

I think I'm more likely to believe that people are "pseudo-political," and in fact, find it actively upsetting when everyone is understood as sincere. Not that there are NO sincere people, that's obviously absurd. But politics seem like a means to an end like any other pathway to community or fame or entertainment, but in a distinctly different way than, say, being for/against gay marriage because those are your community values.

As for my own positions -- I don't really know what I believe, TBH. Part of this is a lack of education, part of it is that there are strengths and weaknesses to any system and I've had the unique privilege of living in many different places. Is medicine better or worse in Ireland? It's both. So, IDK. Depends on the individual. Sounds like a cop out but it's how I really feel and I'd much rather trust more informed people.

Leftists and former leftists think this makes me "excrutiatingly stupid" or that I have "no opinions" or whatever but it's just not in my wheelhouse. I'm immune to polarization or something.

That said, I tend to stick with the right because what political intuitions I DO have are more often right-aligned than left-aligned and I find the environment over=all less suffocating, for all the grief the fringe parts of the RW have given me. I find that their fringe is much less scary than the left's fringe, which has also given me considerable trouble.

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Will circle back...

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Apr 2Liked by Katherine Dee

I agree that the multiplier of media on fandom made the 2010s Internet and its teen generation, and credit to you for seeing that and explaining it. But my sense is that media has changed in the 2020s from discovery-driven to op-ed and commentary-driven, where commentary is a new fandom, but led by corporate and government interests which can bot-dominate traffic, rather than by the rest of us, with one big exception: Tiktok. The 2020s have also added a layer of celebrity promotion to what was there before. Ironically, the discovery of Tumblr was maybe the last gasp of discovery-driven media. Where will things go now? To me, the biggest change is a wide adoption of arbitrage strategies, led by meme-driven stocks and crypto, but also below that level, almost generalized. Arbitrage is when people who think received opinion is wrong try to profit from the gap between what they believe and what received opinion says. Gaming the internet, insincerely, that is, instead of actually defending what one believes. Hopefully, this (nihilistic) phase will pass too.

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Agree there's something going on with commentary / op-eds. News has all but disappeared. I feel like to be a public intellectual is to be constantly pumping out op-eds. But then, before this, it was cancellation pieces, and before that, it was confessional essays. Gonna think about this a bit more...

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Apr 4·edited Apr 4Liked by Katherine Dee

from discovery to confessional to cancellation to commentary/op-eds to ?? ... interesting.

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Apr 2Liked by Katherine Dee

You’ve mentioned fandoms before, and clearly that word has a particular meaning for you. Is there a post where you play out exactly what you have in mind and what the specific mechanics are?

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Apr 2Liked by Katherine Dee

Great stuff, KD

I love this as a "living document" 🙏🏻✌️👍

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Thank you!

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I’m going to be thinking about this for a while

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totally unrelated... let's catch up soon! I miss you

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call me anytime

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Brilliant and really useful to lay priors out so succinctly.

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Thank you!

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