Search and Destroy

“People often have vicious thoughts. Sometimes they share them on Google. Do these thoughts matter?” Most of the time, probably not. But when researchers see a lot of people entering hateful and violent searches into Google, they often find a real world correlation. In the NYT, Evan Soltas and Seth Stephens-Davidowitz explain what they’ve found out about the rise of hate search: “Hate crimes may seem chaotic and unpredictable, a consequence of random neurons that happen to fire in the brains of a few angry young men. But we can explain some of the rise and fall of anti-Muslim hate crimes just based on what people are Googling about Muslims.”

+ In Aeon, Sandra Newman examines the connection between mask-wearing and online behavior: “We go to work and wear a professional mask, then come home and adopt a parental mask. We even have specific personas that go with individual friends.” (That’s why I love my narcissist mask. It works in every setting.)

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