Here is the audio
Here is the audio
I’m reading Alain de Botton’s book The News: A User’s Manual and thinking about how it relates to some of the big picture aims of TruStory. His writing style is elegant and precise.
Here are a few excerpts:
“To consult the news is to raise a seashell to our ears and to be overpowered by the roar of humanity. It can be an escape from our preoccupations to locate issues that are so much graver and more compelling than those we have been uniquely allotted, and to allow these larger concerns to drown out our own self-focused apprehensions and doubts.”
"[News organizations] are institutionally committed to implying that it is inevitably better to have a shaky and partial grasp of a subject this minute than to wait for a more secure and comprehensive understanding somewhere down the line.”
“If we’re tempted to leave comments with unpublishably foul language in them at the end of stories, it may be because the news is reluctant ever to provide us with a sufficiently rich set of descriptions of the problems that surround issues.
…The news shouldn’t eliminate angry responses; but it should help us to be angry for the right reasons, to the right degree, for the right length of time – and as part of a constructive project.”
I love this. So so true. That’s why I love the evolving nature of the stories on TruStory. It forces us to focus on information that is not timely but rather timeless.
Louis CK talks about this too. Social media and cell phone addiction is really just us wanting to “escape from our preoccupations” and desperately looking for “larger concerns to drown out” our own personal worries.
Yeah, I saw a clip of him saying something like that.
"In disputes upon moral or scientific points, let your aim be to come at truth, not to conquer your opponent. So you never shall be at a loss in losing the argument, and gaining a new discovery.” – Arthur Martine
Why it’s relevant to TruStory:
It’s not about WHO is right in debates. It is about WHAT is right. I want to see less straw-manning and making caricatures of other people’s arguments and more mutual understanding.
There are two times in a man’s life when he should not speculate:
when he can’t afford it and when he can.
When do you think someone an’t “afford” it and some can?
I came across a term coined by Michael Crichton (author of Jurassic Park and many other hit novels that became blockbusters). He calls it the “Gell-Mann amnesia effect.” It’s a term for a concept that we are all aware of but may have trouble articulating succinctly. He named the term after his friend and physicist Murray Gell-Mann. Crichton describes it as follows:
You open the newspaper to an article on some subject you know well. In Murray’s case, physics. In mine, show business. You read the article and see the journalist has absolutely no understanding of either the facts or the issues. Often, the article is so wrong it actually presents the story backward-reversing cause and effect. I call these the “wet streets cause rain” stories. Paper’s full of them. In any case, you read with exasperation or amusement the multiple errors in a story, and then turn the page to national or international affairs, and read as if the rest of the newspaper was somehow more accurate about Palestine than the baloney you just read. You turn the page, and forget what you know.
Like so many of the problems with media, this is a problem of poorly configured incentives. A newspaper journalist is paid to write articles on topics not of their choosing or interest, on tight deadlines, and with little post-publishing feedback or room for correction.
TruStory’s incentives are the complete inverse. Claims/topics are voluntary and self-directed – they can follow enthusiasts interests, you can research a topic as long as you like to feel comfortable about posting, and feedback will be swift in either direction.
How about you, have you experienced the Gell-Mann amnesia effect?
You can’t afford it when you’re in a position of power/responsibility. The risk is too high and complex. If you have no influence over others then there is not much to lose.
On the TruStory app, on the other hand, if you have TruStake, then you can technically afford to speculate on claims, but you may be proved wrong and have your stake distributed to others which actually helps the system. The user’s who did the research to challenge your claim are rewarded. And, by forfeiting your stake to them, you are incentivized to try to be more accurate with future claims. #winwin.
Have brand: too much accountability. Only risk losing reputation.
No brand: nothing to lose but no one will take you seriously.
It’s interesting people who develop a brand consistently say/do “out there” things over time.
They BACK it up and earn (real-life) CRED. I love TruStory’s lingo.
"Listening is being able to be changed by the other person." —Alan Alda
(An actor, who apparently now teaches scientists, through improv, how to do a better job making their research relatable to the public…how cool is that?!)
“It is better to be approximately right than exactly wrong.” -Sanjoy Mahajan
Why it’s relevant to TruStory :
@paulapivat’s rubric has made me realize that assumptions are a much bigger part of arguments than I realized. @ShreyasJothish has shown that using clever, elegant assumptions can be not only be time-saving but get a better answer than digging into specific details that aren’t relevant.
The secret to doing good research is always to be a little underemployed. You waste years by not being able to waste hours.
On how TruStory compels us to be more thoughtful and intentional:
Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and our freedom. - Viktor E. Frankl
This is why “eureka” moments happen in the most unexpected places.
I love this quote. Sorry I didn’t understand. Can you explain how it reminded you of TruStory?
We can respond to stimuli (as I interpret, this includes provocations and arguments) emotionally, without thought, or we can pause and think through our response. We always have the choice not to be provoked by emotion.
“Being in a minority, even a minority of one, did not make you mad. There was truth and there was untruth, and if you clung to the truth even against the whole world, you were not mad” -George Orwell, 1984
Often when analyzing claims, you might be the only person who believes the evidence you find, the arguments you construct, and the logic behind it all. And no one may believe you, especially on Twitter. It doesn’t mean you’re crazy or wrong for being in the minority of opinions. Pretty much why I value TruStory – a community where polite, logical discussions are encouraged.
“It’s hard for people to understand something they want to hate.” - Paul Graham
“My goal in technical disagreements is not to “win” arguments. It is to understand an opponent’s ideas on the topic until they form a strict subset of my own knowledge. If we both do this we will converge on the right answer regardless of who started with it.” - Jeff Coleman