After several months of work, I’ve finished the portrait of my novel’s main character.

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Podcast Changes for the New Year

The fourth year of The Private Citizen brings some changes, but keeps the important things the same.
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Trouble in the Skies

Swiss airspace was closed due to missed software update, mainstream media reports on a single death sentence in Iran
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According to my Strava stats, my running distance decreased from 861 km to 783 km from last year. My active days also decreased from 86 to 71 days. In spite of these statistics, I do believe my overall fitness increased. This is because all of these runs were completed with 10 kg of weights and I’ve also completed more, varied exercises that weren’t tracked with Strava. This includes bouldering, which I’ve taken up towards the end of the year.

I did not go running quite as regularly as in 2021 – among other things because of the several holiday trips I went on last year – but I am quite happy with my progress. I’ve maintained my weight of 80 kg almost exactly on the button for the whole year and am continuing to transform fat into muscle mass at a slow, but very steady pace. Here’s to keeping it up in 2023!

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Bankman Gets Fried

The FTX disaster, dangerous World Cup apps
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“And now let us believe in a long year that is given to us, new, untouched, full of things that have never been, full of work that has never been done, full of tasks, claims, and demands; and let us see that we learn to take it without letting fall too much of what it has to bestow upon those who demand of it necessary, serious, and great things."

— Rainer Maria Rilke

I wish all of my readers a Happy New Year! May you have a glorious party or a relaxing evening tonight; whaterver you prefer. See you in 2023!


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I guess there are as many idiots in journalism as there are in any other profession. But in a job mostly consisting of writing down your innermost thoughts on an issue for everyone to see, being an idiot is especially embarrassing. Usually, you have colleagues, including editors, to prevent you from making embarrassing mistakes, but it more and more feels like these people often aren’t much smarter than the person writing the story. Which is why we more frequently get dumb coverage like this story in The Atlantic.

Elon Musk’s Text Messages Explain Everything

The texts make it clear that these men are fundamentally alienated from the rest of the world by their wealth. “In one sense, the texts show that billionaires are just like us – they’re not doing advanced calculus; they’re in their DMs talking smack, making jokes, and trying desperately to get their way,” Lauren Pringle, the editor in chief of The Chancery Daily, told me recently. But she added: “These are absolutely not normal people with a normal understanding of the world.”

Who are these people writing this shit? What did they expect? Did they, until they read Elon Musk’s text messages, really believe that rich people were somehow more intelligent or better people? Why? By virtue of being rich? And is it honestly news to you that rich people don’t operate like you and me, who have to hold down a job and struggle to put food on the table every day? What exactly makes you think that someone who has more money than a human being can even properly conceptualise would have the same problems as us? Why does it surprise you that people who literally have more money than they know what to do with would treat that money callously?

Elon Musk isn’t the first billionaire. How can you claim to write books, articles and even a newsletter called Galaxy Brain with authority on topics such as technology, media and “big ideas” and not understand the most obvious facts of life on this planet? Where do they get these numbskulls? And why does nobody notice the crud these people publish?

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Jonathan has been busily editing Scenic Tarkov episodes and the last few have been especially great, I feel. If you enjoy gripping shooter gameplay and interesting discussions in the lull between the action, why not check these out?



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The stuff that’s being dredged up as part of The Twitter Files reporting is quite astonishing. Here’s people at Twitter debating whether to prompt people to not be afraid of a disease is medical misinformation. The people in charge at Twitter back then really do seem quite insane.

How Twitter Rigged the Covid Debate, David Zweig

In a surreal exchange, Jim Baker, at the time Twitter’s Deputy General Counsel, asks why telling people to not be afraid wasn’t a violation of Twitter’s Covid-19 misinformation policy. In his reply, Yoel Roth, Twitter’s former head of Trust & Safety, had to explain that optimism wasn’t misinformation.

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I’ve just release another episode of The Private Citizen to tide you over the holidays:

The Private Citizen 137: Tracking Elon’s Jet

Responding to listener feedback on episodes about journalism, Drachenlord, The Twitter Files, the Fediverse, free speech, artificial intelligence and beyond.

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