This is huge. It’s what media following the grain of the Internet looks like (if only as a preliminary glimpse).

Here‘s how it works:

WeSearchr has a select group of editors that we call “Askers” who watch the news cycle and figure out what people want to know. […] If an Asker believes that there is enough interest in a question, they will create a “Bounty” as a reward for the answer to the question. The minimum amount of funding to trigger a Bounty is called a “reserve”. […] Members of the WeSearchr community can browse the bounties and donate money to fund a bounty, like other crowdfunding sites. […] Once a Bounty hits its reserve, it is funded and WeSearchr will accept answers from people that have the answers to that question. […] WeSearchr will review the submissions and check them for veracity. […] If the submission fulfills the terms of the Bounty, WeSearchr will assign the reward and release the information to the Asker and assigned news outlets for distribution. […] 30 days after the story’s release, WeSearchr pays the Bounty.
75% of the Bounty goes to the person(s) that deliver a solution.
10% goes to the Asker
15% goes to WeSearchr

So: A decentralized market place for journalistic research.

The conception alone crosses an honesty threshold. There is no longer any need for meta-lies about the essential character of contemporary journalism (as a political apparatus screened by an increasingly-ludicrous pretense to disinterested ‘news’ curation). All research is interested, and its incentives are now openly formalized. The result is a germinal assassination market for hidden things. It targets enemy secrets. The information warfare that media have always been ceases to be promoted as anything else.

For the first time in over a century, it is now possible to envisage journalists making an honest living (by fulfilling private research contracts). This type of transition only goes in one direction. A piece of the future just came into view.

May 26, 2016admin 20 Comments »
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Quote note (#252)

There is no nectar like these tears. WaPo’s Charles Lane whines exquisitely at a cultural crisis management event, held in Washington DC (reported by Amren):

I think it’s the leveling of access to mass communication. Twenty years ago you had to own a $250 million printing press to have access to the whole world; today, you need a $400 phone and you can communicate directly to the entire world. This has been a tremendous source of energy to populist movements. We, the mainstream media, are weaker than we’ve ever been before, yet we are vilified for controlling the discourse. We’ve never been weaker and never been more hated.

The Fourth Estate is having a peculiarly awful 2016 (and it only goes downhill from here).

May 25, 2016admin 39 Comments »

Sentences (#55)

Collapse traps people:

You have to know when to leave.

Most don’t, and won’t, of course.

(Treat this as a promissory note on an installment of provocative skepticism viz the ‘eventually its necessary to stand and fight, or even take things back’ proposition that haunts NRx like a chain-rattling ghost, now more than ever, in the shadow of the impending Trumpenreich. Zombie-fighting-types can assume that the tacit XS stance (“flee you fools”) is at least as infuriating as they would expect it to be.)

May 24, 2016admin 17 Comments »



XS has received a firm (but fair) scolding for not linking to this development in yesterday’s Chaos Patch (or elsewhere).

Here’s the website and a nested blogpost (containing a deeper link to the whitepaper (which is good)). The (minimalistic) manifesto is an ideological mish-mash which has been worked-over by PR imperatives and demands cold scrutiny to extract its real content.

From the whitepaper:

A word of caution, at the outset: the legal status of DAOs remains the subject of active and vigorous debate and discussion. Not everyone shares the same definition. Some have said that they are autonomous code and can operate independently of legal systems; others have said that they must be owned or operate by humans or human created entities. There will be many uses cases, and the DAO code will develop over time. Ultimately, how a DAO functions and its legal status will depend on many factors, including how DAO code is used, where it is used, and who uses it. This paper does not speculate about the legal status of DAOs worldwide.

The XS prediction is itself predictable: This only goes in one direction (and eventually its going to be vast).

ADDED: When the marketing aesthetics go in this direction, we’re done.

ADDED: Andrea Castillo comments.

May 23, 2016admin 25 Comments »
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Chaos Patch (#115)

(Open thread + links)

Property maps authority. Vampiric priors (and response). NRx will be eaten. Slippery slopes. Discretion. Only a new religion can save us (and ancient Chinese signaling spirals). The weekly round, plus outliers.

Atavistic illiberalism (cites). Generational war. Geek-nerd war. Resilient inequality. Militia make waves. Filter the electorate. Alt-Left back and forth. Christianity contra capitalism? Errors of the ENR. Marcuse and his backers.

Bubble skin.

Democracy in crisis (part n). Le Pen on the death of the EU. Israel heads right. A wide-angle view of Venezuela.

Trumpenführer panic report (0, 1). Red State hands over the keys. Statistical hits and misses.

Trouble in the Donkey camp (1, 2).

Twitter mayhem, left and right. Frog plague.

Uninformed economics. Recent natural selection in humans. A vanilla case for gene-editing (relevant). The deep roots of war. Humans aren’t cockroaches (when considered indiscriminately). The real demographic problem. How to avoid antibiotic apocalypse. Darwinian meta-ethics.

Cardwell’s Law. Google with chips. Persistent robot menace, but note: “I’m aware that these kinds of forecasts have been around for at least 200 years, from the beginning of the Industrial Revolution, and they never came true so far. It’s basically the boy who cried wolf … But in the original story of the boy who cried wolf, in the end, the wolf actually comes …” Pan-surveillance.

Thoughts on the Chinese typewriter.

World War Zero. Excavation of the unknown. A signal in the darkness?

May 22, 2016admin 33 Comments »
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Twitter cuts (#65)

The quandary, concisely stated:

(Karl Marx actually made some observations relevant to this point, Joseph Schumpeter — with a far colder tragic vision — even more so.)

May 22, 2016admin 21 Comments »

Twitter cuts (#64)

Spandrell digs deeper (to glorious effect).

May 21, 2016admin 14 Comments »
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Sentences (#54)

When he speaks simply and off the cuff, [UK Labour Party leader Jeremy] Corbyn can have the moral clarity of a priest.

Well … yes.

May 20, 2016admin 14 Comments »

The NRx Presidency

Dateline, December 2016. (A modest extrapolation.)

Informed Neoconservative Opinion: So, NRx, you’ve finally done it. This is all on you. The electoral victory you were aiming for from the start is now in the bag. The reactionary populist uprising has succeeded. Enjoy your shiny new Neocameral State. We’ll be watching from our Canadian refuges, and smiling grimly as your authoritarian racial Utopia runs into the buffers of autarkic economic crisis. Then the public backlash will begin from a citizenry bowed in deep shame, but rediscovering their American virtues. It will be back to color revolution, and our neglected warnings will be once again appreciated. This was your one shot. Celebrate it while you can.

NRx: ??? [*Are they on drugs?*]

Continue Reading

May 19, 2016admin 53 Comments »
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Quote note (#251)

From Niven and Pournelle’s The Mote in God’s Eye (end Chapter 3):

“They used to teach us that evolution of intelligent being wasn’t possible,” she said. “Societies protect their weaker members. Civilizations tend to make wheel chairs and spectacles and hearing aids as soon as they have the tools for them. When a society makes war, the men generally have to pass a fitness test before they’re allowed to risk their lives. I suppose it helps win the war.” She smiled. “But it leaves precious little room for the survival of the fittest.” […] …
“You were saying about evolution?”
“It — it ought to be pretty well closed off for an intelligent species,” she said. “Species evolve to meet the environment. An intelligent species changes the environment to suit itself. As soon as a species becomes intelligent, it should stop evolving.”

It makes you think (or rather, the opposite). The original sin of intelligence — falling back in blind homeostatic antipathy against its own conditions of emergence — isn’t so hard to see.

May 18, 2016admin 36 Comments »