The Null Device


The jock culture thing again: Sports culture is rife with sexual abuse, with a third of female athletes and a fifth of male athletes reporting having been abused. Mere coincidence, or soemthing else?


Did I mention how inspiring and righteously doovy The KLF are?

Their second shot at the Tate was in 1993 when they usurped the gallery's Turner Prize award for the best British artist by offering £40,000 to the worst British artist of the year. Significantly, this prize money was double that of the Turner award, and in a wonderful piece of irony Rachel Whiteread won both. (In fact, she refused to collect the K Foundation award until Drummond threatened to set fire to it outside the gallery.)
(via misterpants.)


This looks promising; Batboy: the Musical. Yes, that Batboy. If that's not enough of a bulldada fix, there are some MP3s of the original cast recording, featuring gems like "Apology to a Cow". (via Misterpants)


Healing the rift between church and state: An insightful look at two faith-based government regimes: Bush II's America (atheists need not apply), and the Taliban's destruction of priceless ancient statues in Afghanistan.

afghanistan politics religion taliban theocracy usa 0

A study on school bullying shows that children learn to disparage others as "poofters" before they even know what sexual orientation is. In the juvenile case, "poofters" are those boys whose behaviour differs from norms, who aren't "tough" or are too studious, too neat in appearance or insufficiently herdish. This proto-homophobic bullying is most common around sports grounds, toilets and change rooms, with libraries, classrooms and computer rooms being relatively safe. (I wonder how much of that is because the former areas attract more pupils inclined to atavistic pack-hierarchy behaviours.)

"Complex meanings and conventions can be passed along generations of schoolboys while largely evading adult intervention and almost regardless of what changes are taking place in the adult world."

It's interesting how many barbaric rituals happen in the pressure-cooker environment of schools, passed on through the years, and conveniently forgotten by those who have left and become adults. Whether it's "fagging" at Eton, primary-school homophobia, fraternity hazing in U.S. universities or aggressive Columbine-style "jock culture", it's like most adults tune it out, deemphasising how cruel and savage children are, or writing it off as a necessary fact of life or character-building initiation into adulthood.


Open vs. Proprietary Protocols/Technologies. Interesting how many of the proprietary ones have failed or been relegated to historical footnotes; with the exception of MP3, which was quasi-open (you can use it openly, though if you do, FHG may sue you into the poorhouse if they can be bothered).