Do you have email filters set up for some friends?

by Eszter Hargittai on May 22, 2007

John Tierney has a piece in the NYTimes about Dan Ryan‘s work concerning the sociology of notification and information dissemination among friends and acquaintances (based on Dan’s recent article in Sociological Theory).

I saw Dan give a talk on this recently and it’s a really fun and interesting topic. His work makes you think about things like why/when it is and is not appropriate to use cc vs bcc on emails, the proper order in which we should notify various people in our networks about certain types of updates, what medium is suitable for what types of material, etc.

The NYTimes piece specifically mentions the idea of setting up email filters for some friends. I must admit that I have filters set up for all sorts of people. I tend to do it by type of person (as in type of network) more so than by specific individual, although the latter idea isn’t foreign to me either.

As someone who studies savvy with IT, I consider the thoughtful use of email filters an important part of skill in how we interact with IT. Email filters are increasingly important for being able to manage the amount of material that comes our way via that particular medium.

[Thanks to Steve Mintz for alerting me to this piece.]

UPDATE: I forgot to post a link to Dan’s blog about the Sociology of Information. Check it out for more goodies.

Chinese Democracy II

by Henry Farrell on May 22, 2007

Brad DeLong “links approvingly”: to Thomas Barnett’s “attack”: on James Mann and other China ‘fearmongers.’ Insofar as I can read through Barnett’s self-created jargon of “the Gap” etc, I don’t find this critique to be insightful, compelling, or indeed particularly accurate. [click to continue…]

Pretty Flamingo

by Jon Mandle on May 22, 2007

I thought this news item involved several of those colorful British idioms that I never quite get exactly. But no – these are real birds.

A pair of gay flamingos have adopted an abandoned chick, becoming parents after being together for six years, a British conservation organisation said Monday.

im in ur blog, linkin ur br00dz

by John Holbo on May 22, 2007

Kieran asks where John Holbo is. Ahem. (Longer wikipedia entry here.)

Brood XIII

by Kieran Healy on May 22, 2007

“The 17-year Cicadas are coming.”: The fact that subsets of them are named by Brood Year and the current batch is Brood XIII is just fantastic. Surely (where’s John Holbo when you need him?) there is a ’50s Attack of the Giant Cicadas film called Brood Thirteen. Or an early comic book? Even better, according to National Geographic, “Each brood of 17-year cicadas actually consists of three different species … and each one has its own song. … The three songs have been described as sounding like the word ‘pharaoh,’ a sizzling skillet, and a rotary lawn sprinkler.” _Cicadas of the Pharoah_ (Tor 1986), shortlisted for a Hugo. _Lawn Sprinklers of the Pharoah_ was the admittedly failed sequel.