links for 2011-08-05

  • "Hats off to the civil libertarians standing up for (aspects of) privacy — regulations about what information about us Mark Zuckerberg can hawk, appropriate default settings, and the like. But in a broader sense, we've already made the trade: if you're hunting for a job, investors, connections, or simply trying to track the Zeitgeist, you just can't compete if you're obsessing about privacy."

    –Agreed.

  • "In an inspiring response to censorship, the Kurt Vonnegut Memorial Library will give away up to 150 free copies of Slaughterhouse Five to high school students in Republic, Missouri. The school board voted to ban Kurt Vonnegut‘s book from the high school library along with Twenty Boy Summer by Sarah Ockler."

    –There's a link at GalleyCat if you'd like to donate.

  • "I personally think this practice of fictional characters writing columns, features or blogs is hokey as all get out. I don’t like it — at all."

    –I'm with you on that, MJ.

  • All of this makes for a gripping read. Too gripping I thought to myself. As it turned out, there is one very serious problem with Mr. Schmidle’s account: Schmidle never met any of the SEALs involved, as reported (with great tact and restraint) by Paul Farhi on August 3.

    Farhi reached the same conclusion as I had: “a casual reader of the article wouldn’t know that [he had not interviewed the SEALS]; neither the article nor an editor’s note describes the sourcing for parts of the story. Schmidle, in fact, piles up so many details about some of the men, such as their thoughts at various times, that the article leaves a strong impression that he spoke with them directly.”

    –I heard Mr. Schmidle speak at UVA a couple of years ago, and was impressed by his youthful accomplishments. Maybe someone should take a second look at some of his past work.

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