Spoilery

In scanning through articles on Project Muse (an academic journal database) just now, I noticed that hypertext author and scholar Stuart Moulthrop prefaced an essay on Watchmen with the disclaimer, “This essay reveals key plot details of the graphic novel Watchmen and the film based upon it.” Are we really going to start putting spoiler alerts on academic writing now? And about a book and movie that came out 23 years and 6 months ago, respectively? Should we?

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Emboldening

Pres. Bush really made “emboldened” happen. Remember when he first said it and everyone thought it was a made-up word a la The Simpsons‘ “embiggened”? At least three academic panelists at the conference this weekend have used it.

The language of crisis

Fascinating conference today and yesterday at Yale Law School on new media, journalism and economic models for the future. A combination of the usual suspects (Clay Shirky, Jeff Jarvis, Steve Brill) and a variety of journalists, law professors, economists, sociologists … One of the great things the conference is doing is enacting its precepts with a live video stream, live blog and constant Twitter updates – it’s even creating a feedback loop between David Carr tweeting in the audience, panelists reading the tweets and responding during their talks, and Carr asking questions in person.

One disappointing thing, though: about 80 percent of the panelists are middle-aged white men. What does it say about this language of crisis that these are the people having the discussions?