I had been monitoring white supremacist groups for a while when a message came in from one of the Telegram groups I follow. “Support only white-owned markets,” it read, providing a list of Telegram handles of white-only businesses for its viewers to patronize. The message was shared around a few times, and within a matter of hours, it had been seen by tens of thousands of people.
These groups are so secretive about their identities, yet here was a list of them — almost thirty storefronts sorted by country and Telegram handles. Several of the storefronts even reshared it, and…
Some of the best virtual vacations on this side of the galaxy.
Sometimes we need an escape — a place to retreat to when the insanities of life become a bit too much — , and for me, that refuge is video games. I have spent hours crawling through various dungeons, planets, and cities, trying to get lost in a world for an hour (or six).
However, many of my favorite escapist fantasies are not places I would necessarily want to visit. They are fun journeys, to be sure, often filled with peril and heart-thumping moments, but definitely not ones…
There is a song that I came across recently that I cannot get out of my head. It’s part of the lineup for the Broadway musical The Century Girl, which aired in 1916 during the midst of World War I. The title is You Belong To Me, sung by Edward Royce and Leon Errol, and it is quite literally about a man deciding he loves a woman and fixating on her, singing:
And now don’t imagine I’ll let you go
Because you say “No” to me
“No” often means “Yes”
I'll make you confess
In time, just wait and see
The hateful comics of StoneToss, Hedgewik, MadebyJimBob, and more.
For the longest time, the Internet has been a place for comic book artists to get their start. Comics such as xkcd and Homestuck inspired cult followings and fandoms. Artists such as Alex Woolfson of The Young Protectors fame proved that indie creators with marginalized identities could successfully express themselves — free of the barriers that plagued more intensive media such as TV shows, movies, and video games.
And yet, the Internet has always had a dark underbelly, where creators use their platforms to spread hatred and misinformation. While increased moderation…
A look at fascist and white supremacist music on YouTube, Facebook, Spotify, and SoundCloud.
The Internet was a game-changer for white supremacist and pro-fascist musicians. They went from occupying the fringes of subcultures such as punk and heavy metal to publishing and interacting with new followers with the click of the button. Not too long ago, you could find some of the most hateful bands plugging their music on the web. …
The show Wandavision (2021) marked the beginning of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s (MCU) Phase 4 — a master plan Marvel Studios and Disney have for over 24 movies and TV shows over the next 4 to 5 years. It also signifies the first live-action MCU show on the Diseny+ platform. Now that the first (and maybe final season) has ended, we are left deciding what exactly this show means, both for the MCU and as a standalone piece of art.
At the center of the show is the titular Wanda Maximoff (Elizabeth Olsen). She is a magical being of immense…
The world of online fashion has been going through the same reckoning with white supremacist conspiracy theories as the rest of the internet. Platforms such as Etsy and CafePress were skewered shortly after the January 6 insurrection for hosting merchandise celebrating the event, which caused them to scramble to take some of the incendiary content down. If you type “QAnon” into sites such as Zazzle or Etsy, you will not get any hits, except for maybe a parody “QaNOPE” T-shirt.
As a kid, my favorite Disney movie was the 1997 animated classic Hercules. It’s about the titular Greek hero (Tate Donovan) trying to prove his godhood so he can be reunited with his family in Mt. Olympus. However, he ultimately rejects his mantle so that he can stay with his love interest Megara (Susan Egan) back on Earth — in essence, repudiating the divinity of his biological family for a romantic partner he doesn’t even marry by the time the film comes to a close.
Inside the rationalization that keeps the QAnon conspiracy ticking.
After the January 6th insurrection, Facebook, Twitter, and the rest of the major social media platforms started to ban groups that promoted conspiracy theories. These recently booted alt-righters flocked to alternative sites such as Telegram and MeWe, where they continued more or less the same as they did before, claiming that a vast government conspiracy had taken over America.
On these fringes of the Internet, it’s common to see far-right conspiracy theorists allege ideas that border on the truly bizarre. Many are still convinced that Trump never lost the election. Entire…
Years ago, I was temping at a racial justice nonprofit. I was helping to staff their annual conference on the social determinants of health when a middle-aged white man darted straight towards our table, which was set up in a convention center of a trendy hotel chain. He swung his arms wildly from side-to-side as he walked up to us and immediately addressed the woman sitting next to me—a Black woman in her early thirties who was a full-time employee for the nonprofit.
“Excuse me, where is the lobbying meeting taking place for the pediatric conference,” he asked abruptly.