Thoughts from a Saturday

Specifically this past Saturday—April 2, 2022. Trying something new here, collecting observations from a day in one, probably overlong, post.

If a record takes more than a week to make, somebody’s fucking up.

This Steve Albini letter to Nirvana at Letters of Note hit several of my lists. After reading it, I wondered how many of my work proposals could I write as a letter? A letter that works in gems like:

I also know that those sounds are inappropriate for some songs, and trying to force them is a waste of time. Predicating the recordings on my tastes is as stupid as designing a car around the upholstery.


I would like to be paid like a plumber: I do the job and you pay me what it’s worth.

And the one I used as a headline:

If a record takes more than a week to make, somebody’s fucking up.

How many of our projects could get distilled to a week? Or two? https://news.lettersofnote.com/p/nirvana

I can’t wait for this guy’s Masterclass in douchebaggery.

A couple of things, I’m guessing Shealah Craighead didn’t want to publish without DJTs involvement because it’d torpedo her career as a GOP photographer.

There are great quotes in that New York Times piece by Eric Lipton and Maggie Haberman.

Shea’s a very talented photographer and this was really all of her hard work,” said Stephanie Grisham, who served as the White House press secretary for Mr. Trump and wrote her own book, referring to Ms. Craighead by her nickname. I just keep thinking: What a shame that he is actually now profiting off of it. But then again, this is the guy who is hawking caps and all kinds of stuff right now to raise money for himself.”

Not giving credit to any of the photographers, while galling, is not surprising:

The 317-page book Mr. Trump published in December, titled Our Journey Together,” includes no photo credits. It does not mention any of the photographers who took the images until the last page, where he briefly offered a grateful acknowledgment” to all the phenomenal White House photographers,” listing them by name, including Ms. Craighead, whose pictures make up much of the book.

I follow Pete Souza on Instagram because he’s a good photographer and I find the whole Official Government Photographer position fascinating. It’s a government gig so the work immediately goes into the public domain.

Again, from the Times:

There is no legal prohibition on Mr. Trump assembling and publishing photographs that a White House staff member took during his tenure; under federal law, those photographs are considered in the public domain and not subject to copyright. There is a public Flickr account, now managed by the National Archives, that has 14,995 photos from the Trump White House, a third of them listing Ms. Craighead as the photographer.

Sidenote: Flickr?

I can’t think of a better place for this sort of thing. Look, I love Glass—and now I’m embarrassed at how little I’ve posted there. Flickr remains accessible and reliable. While I’m guessing the National Archives are reliable, they’re not what I’d call accessible.

Where were we? Right. Douchebaggery.

DJTs entire focus is making money for himself—at any and all costs. What won’t he put his name on to make a buck? How did Craighead not see this coming? Frog, meet scorpion.

Maybe that was the time for a niche shift? Explore some other spaces to specialize in? That archive is awfully light on content from January 6, 2021.

Speaking of douchebaggery.

When Daring Fireball veers off its usual Apple beat it’s pretty great—and Facebook is a reliable piñata. This time Gruber links to a piece from The Washington Post on Facebook using a GOP strategy firm to deflect to TikTok as the biggest menace for today’s young teens. It’s Gruber’s commentary that kills:

We all know that the smart way to alter the opinions of today’s teenagers is to … place op-eds in local newspapers around the country.

The sad thing is while it probably didn’t scare off users, it did spook at least one member of Congress to action, reports Taylor Lorenz and Drew Harwell inThe Washington Post:

. . .led Sen. Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.) to write a letter in September calling on TikTok executives to testify in front of a Senate subcommittee, saying the app had been repeatedly misused and abused to promote behavior and actions that encourage harmful and destructive acts.” But according to an investigation by Anna Foley at the podcast network Gimlet, rumors of the devious licks” challenge initially spread on Facebook, not TikTok.

Stay classy Facebook, stay classy.

It was also a nice day for a walk.

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