Native german-speaker currently studying IT, probably either procrastinating my studies or thinking about tech, society, and morals.
Tries to spam one shower thought per day until my brain dries out.
I find it really weird when people ask people "are you into [some_gender]?"... Like... What even is the question here? Is it "Are you into the abstract concept of [some_gender]?", as if most people where attracted to abstract concepts rather than other people? Is it "Are you into [some_gender] as a collective?", as if people where automatically attracted to every single person of a given gender just because said gender doesn't turn them off?
I think the real question should be "are you into some/ have you ever been into some [plural_term_for_people_of_said_gender]?", or "are you into/ have you ever been into [singular_term_for_a_person_of_said_gender]?".
Wording it like this would be (a) much more precise, and (b) help normalize that just because someone is potentially attracted to people of a specific gender doesn't mean they are attracted to everyone of said gender (which is a pretty toxic notion since it hinders straight people from having healthy friendships to other people of different genders, gay people from having healthy friendships to other people from their own gender, and frames bisexual people and pansexual people as low-key predatory).
Ich find es sehr ironisch, dass dieselben alten Männer und Edgeboys, die für eine Rückkehr zum absoluten generischen Maskulin werben (á la "Frau Merkel ist der erste weibliche Bundeskanzler") alle von ihrer "Beziehungspartnerin"/"Freundin" reden, wenn es um die Person geht, mit der sie zusammen sind... Like, go ahead, nenn sie deinen Beziehungspartner, wenn du den generischen Maskulin so sehr liebst... oder könnte es sein, dass der generische Maskulin bei seinen Verfechtern nur bis dahin geht, wo ihre fragile Heterosexualität anfängt? 🤔
Dieselben Männer, die "no homo" sagen müssen, wenn sie einem anderen Mann ein Kompliment machen wollen, bestehen darauf, alle Menschen mit der grammatikalisch männlichen Form bezeichnen zu dürfen... how ironic...
Whales are fishes, and we should collectively go back to calling them fishes like we did it 1k years ago. Please bear with me, and hear me out on this.
The bible, when talking about the whale that swallowed Jonas, refers to the thing as a "fish" (and hear me out some more, I promise I won't argue that we should abolish science and do bible studies). And analogously, when we call something a fish today, what we mean is not "oh, you know, it has a spine in its back, and also, it breathes water through weird slits on the side of its head, and it lives in water, too", but rather, we mean "y'know, it has fins and swims in the water yet it is not a green and scaly type of thing (cause that'd be a snake or crocodile)". The thing we want to convey has nothing to do with how it breathes and whether it is a vertebra. We don't care how it breathes unless it's caught up in a fisher net or stranded on the shoals, which most fish currently aren't, and we don't care how it bends its back unless we want to become a personal trainer for a fish or we are currently choking on a fish spine due to swallowing it whole.
For millennia, we used "fish" as a word to refer to things that swim in the ocean and can't walk on land, which makes it a pretty useful word since having a distinction between fast and moving things that live below 0 AMSL and fast and moving things that live above 0 AMSL is pretty useful in a world where there is almost zero intersection between both groups. Even when "whale" as a word became a thing (I guess that was around the time whale hunting became an industry?), many languages still categorized whales as a subcategory of fish, which makes perfectly sense considering the definition above. People in German-speaking countries, for example, used to talk about the "Walfisch", which roughly translates to "whale fish".
But then, scientists "discovered" that whale aren't fish (to be precise, they merely discovered that whales are not like other fish because they don't have gills, and decided to gatekeep being a fish because well, f*ck whales), and introduced us to the idea that fish are only fish if they breathe through gills, even though (a) scientists are not the only people who have to talk about fish, and (b) they are the only people who care about fish having gills, so why should they have a say on how non-scientists use the term "fish"?
This might sound like I am just nitpicking about not being allowed to refer to a whale as a Waalfisch like my children books used to anymore, since our society expects responsible adults to "use the right words", and to be fair, that's actually part of the reason why I hate the whole "a whale isn't a fish"-thing so much, but I feel like the whole thing is also a symptom of a much bigger problem in our society, that being that people aren't aware of the difference between cultural and technical definitions of things. Which is actually why I made this post.
The "technical definition" of something is how you'll be taken if you are taken at face value, how people will understand something you said when you say it in a scientific publication, and what they make of it in an extremely serious context.
The "cultural meaning", on the other hand, is the information that you actually want to convey (or ask for) with the word, in a casual or non-formal context; so pretty much how people actually use it and what people make out of hearing it, on a daily basis. How scientists, or linguists, or books define a word will never change its cultural meaning, but might define its technical definition.
Be aware that "technical definition" and "cultural meaning" are the words that I use myself, and they might not necessarily have exactly the meaning I use them for in a linguistic context.
I know I've already said it twice in different wording, but I can't stress it enough: When you say "fish", most of the time you mean "something that swims and lives in the water", and when you hear someone say "fish", what you take from it is that the thing in question lives and swims in the water, and that they are referring to such creatures specifically. The cultural definition of "fish" hasn't changed at all over the past years, yet referring to whales according to the cultural definition of fish, which doesn't negatively impact communication in any way, will lead to one being negatively judged and "corrected" by someone who feels like forcing their oh-so-important destination between breathing with lungs and breathing with gills onto other people's language.
The thing I find weird about this is that outside of academia, the technical definition of terms almost never matters, yet academics and intellectual elites claim words, "redefine" them and expects everyone to just go along with it, and for some reason, people just accept that. It's also pretty common that people say and spread problematic ideas, and then successfully argue that what they say is objectively true, because it theoretically is as long as you interpret their words according to some academic definition (often arbitrarily chosen out of the many different definitions that different academic schools use for a term), even though they know full well that most people (potentially including themselves) don't know in which context the definition applies and which academic school's definition they are actually using, and that most people will just take their word since they use terms in their "true scientific meaning", and subsequently mix up cultural and theoretical definition of the words and therefore the theoretical implications of what they are saying. And these people, the very same people who purposefully mix up the scientific definition of a word and its cultural definition in order to push their agenda on people and make it sound like science agrees with them are also the very same people who react to any correction on the way they use their terms with "Yes, but this is obviously not how I meant it, and as long as people understand what I meant to say, it doesn't matter whether I actually used a term correctly, so stop nitpicking."
Facit & TL;DR: Academics need to stop creating formal definitions of words with pre-existing cultural meaning and pushing these re-definitions into daily language. Common people need to learn the difference between cultural and theoretical definitions. And hostile people need to stop weaponizing the double-nature of language and other peoples missing differentiation between cultural and theoretical meanings of words for purposefully pushing hateful misconceptions about things by using scientific definitions of words to argue about the thing their cultural definition refers to.
Imagine a language where every person, rather than having gendered pronouns, would use the first syllable of their name (or something else derived from their first name that isn't longer than one syllable) as a pronoun...
I think this would be pretty cool, since
(a) there would be no (perceived) problems or (perceived) issues with non-binary people's pronouns, since the problem of gendered pronouns effectively implying the existence of a finite pool of different genders (and vice-versa) would be solved,
(b) people wouldn't need to remember pronouns (less than today and even less than in the 15th century, since you could just derive a person's pronouns from their name),
(c) it would not be any more impractical than how using pronouns is today, since pronouns would be short, and it would be completely gender-neutral whilst still being much more practical than the common approach of not using pronouns at all (which, of course, is only relevant for languages without gender-neutral pronouns),
(d) it would actually be even more practical than how using pronouns traditionally is, since you could conclude the person a conversation is about or even fully derive it just from hearing the pronouns they are referred to with,
(e) it would be gender-neutral, moving us away from the notion that gender is a defining trait important enough to be the very first attribute of a person that people learn about, which, as a concept, is baked into most modern languages and enforces a society in which gender is the top-level attribute on which people are judged, categorized, and subjected to social expectations that do in no way reflect the individuals needs.
That would be very cool, wouldn't it?
I absolutely love the concept of neo-pronouns, though, so the ideas presented above are in no way intended to call for force-abolishment of neo-pronouns and gender-neutral pronouns in favor of a different system. After all, the most important part of a language is to make sure people feel recognized and validated rather than being easy and scraping two or four letters in a word to spare someone 3 seconds every year <3
Quick reminder that the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, whilst entirely consisting of absolutely fundamental human rights, was drafted by nine cis(^1), straight(^1), mostly white(^2), mostly male(^3), wealthy, mainly western(^4) and socially as well as politically privileged people.
Even though the rights it guarantees are all absolutely fundamental, not every absolutely fundamental human right is necessarily included in the declaration. Every single person from the Drafting Committee was subject to way more social privilege than the average person, therefore adding a bias in favor of socially privileged people and the oppressive structures they profit from. The fact that the declaration was drafted more than 70 years ago in a time when homophobia, transphobia and misogynist where pretty much accepted, and gender and alternatives to being cis weren't even conceptualized yet by the mainstream, doesn't help either.
TL; DR Just because something isn't part of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights doesn't mean it's not a human right.
(^1): At least not openly
(^2): Take that with a grain of salt since photos back then where all in black-and-white
(^3): One woman, to be precise
(^4): The Soviet Bloc was, according to Wikipedia, not very active during the seating of the Commission, which was probably a good thing since it was pretty authoritarian, but this and the fact that only a view selected comparably wealthy countries participated in the drafting committee creates a strong western bias
Hmpf... I planned to toot one clever little thought per day, added it to my profile information, felt cute about it, decided to move my mastodon instance to my rPi, and ended up not finishing this (yet), effectively disconnecting my mastodon instance and disrupting my tooting.
Anyways, here I am again, continuing to toot. I will try to move my instance another time once my exams are over.
My goodness... Yesterday, I cut myself with a piece of bread. And it bled.
I was eating a slice of bread, and it was really hard, and I was gnarling on it with my teeth and trying to rip a piece off of it that fit into my mouth, and then, I ripped half of it off and it slit across my cheek and cut me.
Like, I don't ever hurt myself with knifes, or forks, or spoons, or any other sharp or spiky metal objects, and then, I go and cut my cheek with a slice of bread, or pierce the roof of my mouth with a slice of pizza crust, and literally any other form of gore imaginable with any form of food.
I am so sick of it.
I really dislike the notion that people should, no matter what, respect the opinions of scientists and academics on their subject as a universal "fact", no matter what... I mean, yes, you shouldn't disregard a scientist's carefully crafted opinion without even having educated yourself into the subject, or because you don't quite like what they are saying, or because an esoteric vegan shaman cookbook-writer decided that he has moral authority on what is truth and what is not, and you should respect that people who studied something probably have much more detailed knowledge of the ins and outs of the subject, but at the same time, you should be aware that academics are one specific social group and therefore, socially and culturally biased.
Someone who studied economics, for example, knows more about economics than most people. This causes them to have a deeper understanding of market mechanisms, therefore giving them an advantage on the market and allowing them to make more money (on average), which then makes them economic upper-class (or, to be precise, gives them an on-average higher economic status than other people), therefore causing a political bias contra wealth redistribution and pro keeping the economic status quo, as well as a social and cultural bias (because they have a higher chance of being part of social and cultural elites).
So basically, if you ask an economics major about their take on financial elites, the free market or the current market system in general, which are exactly the topics they studied, their response will be less objective and more biased (therefore undermining their credibility) than if you asked someone who knows less, but is less biased about these topics.
The general thing to take away from this example (and similar lines of thoughts can be, to different extends, applied to almost any field of science, so this is really just a prominent example!) is that knowledge often comes and correlates with social and political bias, and that you, we and I should always question whether this bias exists and in which form before blindly assuming that everything an academic tells us is objective neutral.
Ich finde, Kreditwürdigkeit ist an und für sich ein Konzept, das in einer Demokratie keinen Platz hat... es gibt bestimmte Klassen, die privilegiert sind, und die daher eine hohe Chance haben, Kredite zurückzuzahlen, und die Kreditwürdigkeit stellt essentially sicher, dass Menschen, die nicht aus diesen Klassen sind oder deren Eigenschaften hart von den Erwartungshaltungen abweichen, die man an Menschen dieser Klassen legt, keine Kredite bekommen. Im Endeffekt ist das ein System, das literally enforced, dass nur Menschen aus privilegierten Schichten Kredite bekommen und Menschen aus politischen, ethnologischen oder sozialen Randgruppen und allgemein Menschen aus marginalisierten Minderheiten keine Kredite bekommen.
Du bist privilegiert und brauchst ergo eigentlich kein Geld? Prima, nimm dies! Du bist marginalisiert und kein Teil der sozialen Elite? Naaah, bleib wo du bist, von uns bekommst du keinen Heller!
Es ist umso absurder, wenn man bedenkt, dass das bei uns von einem Privatunternehmen gemacht wird (keinen vorgegebenen Standards und Transparenzkriterien unterlegen), mit einem Algorithmus, der rechtlich geschützt ist (keine Transparenz; sie können alles in den Algorithmus schreiben, was sie wollen, also auch Diskriminierung auf Basis von verbotenen Kriterien wie z.B. Hautfarbe, oder Dinge, um Menschen zu benachteiligen, die der SCHUFA auf die Füße getreten sind) und einer Fast-Monopolstellung, die allgemein schon kritisch wäre und bei einem Unternehmen, das über die finanziellen Chancen von Leuten entscheidet, umso problematischer ist, und das im Übrigen auch noch nach Entscheidung des Landgerichts Wiesbaden noch nicht einmal im vollen Maßen der DSGVO unterliegt (als Privatunternehmen).
If I where to tell my boss that I want to use one specific tool to solve an issue, and we are using said tool to work on this issue for over a hundred years, and it did not bear reasonable amounts of fruits until now, and I can't give him a deadline until which it will have worked, and I can not give him a plan or roadmap on how any why exactly it will work, or at least not more than I could 100 years ago, and I would ask him for his trust into my concept, he would stare at me, blink one or two times, and fire me.
But if neoliberal and economically conservative elites tell us that the free market (or, alternatively, the market in general) is going to solve any issue we have with poverty and wealth distribution, demand our trust in them saying so but can't give us a deadline on when this will finally work out, demand us to pour our heart and soul into it by working as a part of their vision until the end of our life, all that for more than a hundred years, and the people stare at them, blink one or two times and shake their heads, they get labelled as extremists.
I'm somewhat salty about the iron stance of right-wing, conservative and centrist politicians on any debate about our current economic system...
Like, we technically have enough production to easily satisfy literally everyone's needs (unless they are greedy), and we can do so even with only a smaller percentage than 100% of all people working (otherwise, the principle of supply and demand would ensure that there is always almost zero unemployment, which obviously isn't the case anymore due to machines being able to overtake any job).
So, we have enough for everyone, but not everyone gets enough of it to live a good life, and we can produce enough of everything even without everyone working.
Basically, distribution is an issue more than ever before, whilst production and employments are not issues anymore, at least from a simplified technological viewpoint.
And yet, right-wing politicians refuse any form of debate about distribution or the current form of distribution, whilst at the same time making every issue about not having a 100% employment rate in our society.
They **do** realize that less than 100% employment is technically enough to satisfy everyone's needs, but refuse to accept that the distribution is at fault for people still suffering from not having enough to live a good life.
Left-wingers have created mountains of alternative ideas and concepts for distribution systems that may or may not be more efficient at distributing wealth better, which entail not only communism, but also a whole spectrum of different concepts; and yes, not agreeing with them or considering the current economic system to be more efficient is legitimate, but ruling elites go far beyond that by not only disagreeing to all of them, but also refusing any form of debate about them or our current economic system, by not acknowledging the existence and availability of different concepts and potential alternatives, by refusing to even look at them before giving their judgement, or by simply refusing to accept that there is any issue with the distribution in our current system, all of that with the simple narrative that any alternative form of distribution automatically equals a corrupt communist dictatorship with red flags waving from every building on every other day and people getting shot in bright daylight for opposing social structures.
I really hate that there was never something like an indie revolution in animation like there was in game developement...
Like, with games, there were always triple-A-companies, but the only thing that money could buy them was better animation, more photo-realism, more graphics and more physic-simulation; and, of course, more content in their games... I feel like big game companies place so much value on photo-realism specifically because they know that, if people where to get that great immersive narratives do not require photo-realism, their market power might crumble in favor of smaller indie studios. And then, indie studios showed people that great, immersive, powerful storytelling does not require next gen graphics, but also works with minimalist graphics, cheap ps1-styled graphics, mediocre pixel art or miserably shadered walking beans (aka indie revolution). And suddenly, single persons created things that could easily measure themselves with things that big game companies created (e.g. Undertale).
I feel like it all boils down to money only being able to buy glitter, not substance and vision, and single persons being able to create the same that big companies can create as soon as the idea that glitter is what matters crumbles, and big industries try to keep this idea alive.
I would love to see an indie revolution when it comes to animated movies; how lit would it be to see innovative emotional animated movies with microsoft-paint-level graphics, subtitles rather than voice-acting and one frame per two seconds, yet 180 minutes runtime and an innovative concept, vision and storyline rather than something that got digested and regurgitated by three producers in a row and censored afterwards by some spineless Disney executives?
I once heard someone say, "If you want to go for surrealism, try really hard to go for it, cause otherwise, it's just an euphemism for laziness", and idk, it kinda stuck with me. I think I'm gonna go with that principle. Also easily appliable to minimalism and abstract art, I think. Take it with a grain of salt, though, since this is grossly generalizing advice from a not-an-artist person on mastodon.
Native german-speaker currently studying IT, probably either procrastinating my studies or thinking about tech, society, and morals.
Tries to spam one shower thought per day until my brain dries out.
My personal mastodon instance, where I toot about whatever I find tootworthy.