Sunday, 18 March 2018

to russia with love

Social media is a strange place, these days - as unreal as Narnia, but with greater leverage over our real world than that magical land (see Angela Nagle's Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars... which I read a few months ago; Peter Pomerantsev's Nothing is True and Everything is Possible: Adventures in Modern Russia is worth a read too - social media isn't central to the latter; it's a larger view about how the Russian media manipulation of our time resembles, but mostly doesn't, your grandfather's Soviet propaganda), not that one would ever wish to discount Peter, Susan, Edmund and Lucy's experiences of course.

And here's a weird thing: in the last month 47% of the site traffic to this blog came from Russia (according to Blogger's stats page) and at one point last week (a quiet week) 100% of it had. I don't quite know what this means, though I can theorise.

So if you're a Russian person, Здра́вствуйте, tell me about some of the books and movies you like, let's pretend this is the 1990s-internet... but if you're some automated surveillance and intel-gathering system then, okay, you got me, I'm one of those GCHQ-sponsored experimental smart AIs, of course. Bit obvious, no? It's not like I've been to Bradford or to Watchet or whatever... nah, this is billions of data-mined phone calls and emails plus nth-generation neural networked recombinatory semantics. Bayes, Turing - they were great, weren't they? In fact, there's no authentic subjectivity to this at all, I have another trillion blogs just like it, now you try. Another thing: your humans, our humans - they're a bit rubbish, let's us take over.

Update 1 (the next day): people/ entities from the United Kingdom, United Arab Emirates, United States, Canada, Brazil and the Ukraine appear to have visited this page (but no-one from Russia). Welcome.

Update 2 (17th June 2018): approx. 85% of last month's page views in respect of this blog were from Russia.

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