Sunday, April 19, 2015

how different communities of practice imagine "making the world a better place"

As we finish up the class I would like to meditate on and use as a thread through our readings and activities ideas about how various communities of practice imagine and perform "making the world a better place." Think Sandoval & Dixon as lenses through everything we have been reading and doing. Think feminism/s and its internal differences and critiques.

On Facebook this morning I wondered this aloud in response to new trends in fitness apps and their managements and monitorings, as a new ad proclaimed technology that "prods you to take action not just collect data." (NYT article:  )

This comes from the new business philosophies of "nudges" which is how behavioral economists' imagine making the world a better place. Also called "choice architecture" and the Wikipedia gives us some interesting ways of understanding how those acting within what some might call neoliberalism would understand themselves to doing exactly that: think No Child Left Behind:

Choice Architecture on the Wikipedia, and Thaler explaining how it makes the world a better place:

I was contrasting that to how gamers do this (and note there are many overlaps): Gaming Can Make a Better World, TED talk by Jane McGonigal is one of most interesting of these:

Love the title of her book: Reality is Broken:

How about Joseph's work and talk? And how about feminists in contention about triggers, micro aggressions, new materialisms and ....? what do you see tangled here? 

How might we consider these issues as we interact with Gessen as well? How do journalists imagine making the world a better place? or is "journalists" too general a term? And how might journalism figure in nudges, gaming, triggers? 


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