Top News, Articles, and Interviews in Philosophy

I Don’t Tweet About The Availability Heuristic As Much As You Think

Charles Lassiter, associate professor of philosophy at Gonzaga University, knows more about my tweeting than I do. Why? Well, for one thing, he also knows more about statistical analysis than I do. But more to the point: Professional philosophy feels like a club where there are insiders and outsiders. Insiders get to refer to famous people by first name and tell silly stories about them. Outsiders smile politely. Social media—and the Interwebs in general—is, I think, one way that the playing field might get leveled… Two possibilities. (1) the Interwebs & social media are the great equalizer. Anyone who wants a shot to get to know a Big Shot can. (2) the Interwebs & social media follow something like a Matthew Effect. So which is it? Who gets talked about in philosophy social media?…  I emailed Dr. Justin Weinberg (I can call you “Justin” now, right? We’re buddies. Oh the many silly things we’ve talked about and done…). I wanted to run the idea past him of analyzing and blogging about the @DailyNousEditor account—hereafter referred to as ‘DN’. He kindly agreed and expressed interest in the results.  (Of course you can call me Justin, Charlie—fun times raiding Hume’s wine cellar with you the other day!) And so Professor Lassiter began his analysis. In a series of posts, he reports on what he found out along the way, including: Who my top Twitter partners have been over the past four years (those to whom I most frequently reply [More]

White Philosophers: It’s Time to Stop Using Digital Blackface

by Savannah Pearlman The origins of blackface date from the early 19th century minstrel shows, in which white actors blackened their faces to take up racist, exaggerated and stereotypical black personas. White actors appropriated and distorted the identity performance of black individuals, portraying them as lazy, promiscuous, jolly, or idiotic—all for the enjoyment of (predominantly) [More]

Gender Bias in Philosophy Social Media

By Carolyn Dicey Jennings A top medical journal published a research letter this week concerning the behavior of health researchers on Twitter, and how that behavior is informed by gender. The authors report that women researchers have far fewer followers, likes, and retweets than men, despite similar levels of activity on the site: Women had [More]

“Academic Philosophy Is Ruining Our Marriage”, Non-Hegel Versions

By now many readers will have seen the Reddit post written by a physicist seeking advice about what to do about her Hegel-obsessed philosopher-of-science husband. It was posted in the Heap of Links the other day, and all over social media—to the extent that “Hegel” was trending on Twitter. The post begins: My husband and I are both academics. We’ve been married for 3 years, and been together for 6. He is an academic philosopher and I am a physicist. He has recently expressed displeasure that I’ve never seriously engaged with his work. Now, I’ve read a bit… Unfortunately, everything he’s shown me has just seems completely insane. Here’s the problem: his work apparently involves claims about physics that are just wrong, and wrong in a very embarrassing way! She details some of those claims, points out various problems, and claims his pre-occupation with Hegel “has reached the point of creepiness,” noting that “he keeps a framed picture of Hegel on the nightstand in our bedroom.” The problem grows and culminates in a fight: Recently we got in a huge fight because he was trying to demonstrate an example of the Hegelian concept of the “unity of opposites” (whatever that means) by claiming that right and left hands are opposite but also identical. I told him this is just wrong and that right and left hands are not “identical” in any meaningful sense (chirality is a basic concept [More]

Philosophy on Twitter & YouTube – Quarterly Update

Here’s the “Philosophy on Twitter & YouTube” Quarterly Update from Kelly Truelove of TrueSciPhi. Philosophy on Twitter & YouTube – Quarterly Update (Q2 2019) by Kelly Truelove TrueSciPhi.org features a variety of lists and statistics regarding philosophy communities on social media including Twitter, podcasts, and YouTube. For project background, please see the previous quarterly update. This update focuses on philosophers & philosophy organizations on Twitter. Twitter Follower Growth The TrueSciPhi site tracks over 500 philosophers on Twitter who each have over 1,000 followers. Lists of those who have gained the most followers (on a percentage basis) in the past week, month, quarter, and year can be found here. The top gainers in Q2: 1K-10K followers 10K+ followers @apsullivan 143% @jasonintrator 44% @DSilvermint 129% @christapeterso 29% @emilytwrites 46% @MarinaGarces 28% @AmneMachin 44% @phl43 26% @RebeccaBuxton 43% @Docstockk 25% @jennfrey 43% @scottjshapiro 21% @rinireg 41% @Roger_Scruton 19% @lsanger 41% @kate_manne 18% @morallawwithin 39% @ShaikhaBinjasim 17% @philosophiclee 37% @BenceNanay 16% None of the accounts in the 1K-10K tier were on the equivalent list for Q1. In contrast, six of the accounts in the 10K+ tier are making repeat appearances (@jasonintrator, @Docstockk, @Roger_Scruton, @kate_manne, @ ShaikhaBinjasim, and @BenceNanay), and a seventh (@christapeterso) previously was on the 1K-10K tier list. Tiering accounts in this [More]

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