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Today in Tabs: Seventy Two Million Tabs

The Take Tree grew many new branches overnight.

Today in Tabs: Seventy Two Million Tabs
[John Brennan: via Wikimedia Commons, Nicki Minaj: Flickr user Eva Rinaldi, Bull and Bear and Graph via Shutterstock]

New York Magazine’s annual year-end-filler “Reasons to Love New York” issue this week included the incredible story of Mohammed Islam, a Stuyvesant high school teen who made $72 million trading stocks, by Jessica Pressler. The commenters had hardly even begun to savage the story when the teens involved got hauled into Principal Kurson’s office at the Observer where, alone with only their shame, their nice suits, and their crisis PR firm, they admitted that the whole story was a hoax. Bezos’s blog has a good roundup of who said what when. Pressler and NYMag variously defended the specific wording of the profile, claimed to have seen a bank statement, and claimed to have had an unnamed fact-checker see a bank statement, but eventually NYMag posted a retraction and apology. Pressler was on her way to Bloomberg, where she had heard that after a year “they give you a magazine that you can run into the ground.” Bloomberg are now declining to comment on that prospect, but it would be a dumb shame if she lost a job over some year-end listicle crap. Mr. Islam is reportedly being considered to head up the Racket Teen Wall Street bureau.

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Worst Takes: Camille Cosby latched onto the Rolling Stone UVA story to suggest that her husband’s 19 accusers (so far) are probably all lying too.

Eli Lake says well but, but, but, what if torture works sometimes! Bret Stephens is “Not Sorry the CIA Waterboarded” in the WSJ. Adam Weinstein condemns this “Axis & Allies boardgame bullshit approach to the world, but that puts him at odds with 60% of Americans, who are ok with torture even when you call it torture. Peter Beinart in The Atlantic:

There’s something bizarre about responding to a 600-page document detailing systematic U.S. government torture by declaring that the real America—the one with good values—does not torture. It’s exoneration masquerading as outrage. Imagine someone beating you up and then, when confronted with the evidence, declaring that “I’m not really like that” or “that wasn’t the real me.”

And last, the Slate Take that had to happen, “Stop Publishing the Sony Hacks
.” I don’t know what the argument is, I only read this part at the end: “Correction, Dec. 15, 2014: This article originally misspelled Adolf Hitler’s first name.


Buying you all gift subscriptions for Xmas
(Kara Bloomgarden-Smoke / NY Observer)

Nieman Lab is doing 2015 journalism predictions. Jacob Harris on garbage PR data and Reyhan “I’m not just currying favor with my editor” Harmanci on how much freelancing sucks are both great, but the rest are too. Mallory brings us the “Sad Youtube” of Amazon vibrator reviews. Speaking of which, Nick Minaj’s album is out, and it’s pretty good. Amanda Marcotte took the opportunity to round up a history of songs about masturbation but inexcusably forgot to include “Blister in the Sun.” Frequent guest-tabber Jessie Guy-Ryan wrote about Phillip K. Dick in Oyster Review so good luck disentangling the layers of conflict of interest undergirding my inclusion of that tab. ’Tis the season for terrible corporate holiday messages. Neal Stephenson is joining Magic Leap. Which of these is the Take Tree? You’ll never know.

TODAY’S INTERN TAB, by BIJAN STEPHEN

The difference between intimate and non-intimate spaces is intuitive and often flickering, but generally clear. Your workplace isn’t generally intimate and your bedroom generally is; there are circumstances, though, that can flip those generalities. And online, the distinction is fuzzier. Group chats are more bedroom than workplace, more quiet kiss than firm handshake—but again, there can be extenuating circumstances. Today, Kyle Chayka has published a brief meditation on group chat’s intimacy in Gizmodo.

It’s not just the NSA that makes a private internet desirable. We also want to be shielded from each other. Group chats take the benefits of the open internet and social media—effortless communication, instant sharing, a sense of belonging—and shrink them down into something that fits the scale of our personal lives instead of the entire planet.

The technology is new,  as Chayka points out, but intimacy is not. Human connection will never become obsolete.

Before I remembered that Bijan had claimed that tab today, I had it included above as: “Kyle Chayka doxxed everyone’s dark social Slacks.” I think this pretty well captures the contrast between my style and Bijan’s.

Today’s Blog Entry: Casey Kolderup, “2014: What I Didn’t.” I’m feeling this.

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Today’s Song: Nick Minaj, “Feeling Myself

~Come get you some of that tabs baby~

Today in Tabs is handcrafted every day from local, organic takes, and served on a bed of fresh FastCoLabs with a side of roasted TinyLetter. Pairs well with a chilled @rustyk5. No substitutions, please. A gratuity of 15% will be automatically added for parties of 6 or more.

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