The Rise of the Digital Proletariat →

Sarah Jaffe interviews Astra Taylor for In These Times…

“We really need to think through these issues on a social level. I tried to steer the debate away from our addiction to our devices or to crappy content on the Internet, and really take a structural view. It’s challenging because ultimately it comes down to money and power and who has it and how do you wrest it away and how do you funnel some of it to build structures that will support other types of voices. That’s far more difficult than waiting around for some new technology to come around and do it for you.”

I’m looking forward to cracking open Astra’s new book: The People’s Platform: Taking Back Power and Culture in the Digital Age.

A tale of two cities: how San Francisco’s tech boom is widening the gap between rich and poor →

Laurie Penny; New Statesman…

“There is nothing wrong with making things that people want. The problem is that personhood and desire are constrained by capital; money affects whose wants appear to matter. The kids in Startup House may want a pizza delivery drone, but not in the same way low-income families want health care, or the elderly men lying in their own faeces on Howard Street want a safe place to sleep. There is nothing wrong with making things people want. It’s just that too little attention is being paid to the things people need.”

Solid Steel – 30 Years of Acid – Posthuman →

“We put together this mix to celebrate 30 years of acid. We decided to pick one track per year, since 1984 – the year Roland stopped making the 303. Starting with Chicago House, expanding out into Detroit Techno and the evolutions in the acid sound from the UK & Europe, then into the late 90′s Warp/Rephlex territory, right up to the present day.”

“It is an oversimplification to say that this is the result of business valuing profit rather than product, for no one should be expected to do business without the incentive of profit. The actual trouble is that profit is identified entirely with money, as distinct from the real profit of living with dignity and elegance in beautiful surroundings.” Alan Watts, Does It Matter?

Why The New American Workforce Wants Better Consumption, Not Just More →

Sara Horowitz; Fast Company…

“[T]he richest 5% of Americans are back to spending like they’ve got Gordon Gekko’s Visa card. They’re now responsible for 38% of domestic consumption (up from ‘just’ 28% in the go-go ’90s).

And since the recession ended, spending by the rich has risen 17%. The rest of us? Just 1%.

We’ve stopped looking for more. Instead, we just want enough. And better.

We’re saving. We’re eating healthy and local. We’re thinking about what each purchase means–for us and for our community.”

What happens to the successful when everyone else decides that success is measured as something more subtle and meaningful than simply ‘more than most’?