Staying Unspoiled In The Age Of Social Media

With the slow death of "appointment television" comes an increasing tendency for spoilers to pop up in unexpected places. Writer Sean T. Collins discusses fans' and critics' attempts to preserve the suspense.

What's the Latest Development?


Now that season 3 of the hit HBO show "Game of Thrones" is underway, writer Sean T. Collins describes how the time-shifting nature of today's television watching and the mercurial flow of social media is affecting the story experience for fans and critics alike. One fan site, Tower of the Hand, has an automated feature that hides information depending on how many of the five novels in A Song of Ice and Fire (the book series on which the show is based) the user claims to have read. Another fan site, Winter is Coming, focuses only on the TV series, treating anything that hasn't aired as a spoiler.

What's the Big Idea?

For people who write about television shows for a living, the ongoing online chatter makes their jobs even harder. Approaches range from Huffington Post critic Maureen Ryan's "first do no harm" to ThinkProgress blogger Alyssa Rosenberg's "I don't care at all." Ryan says that it can be tiresome to "always protect everyone’s experience all the time. I’ve been yelled at for writing or tweeting about certain developments three days after the show in question aired." Ultimately, says Collins, viewers should exercise common sense in the fight to stay unspoiled: "[I]n the words of Walter Sobchak, life does not start and stop at your convenience."

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.com

Read it at Wired

'Upstreamism': Your zip code affects your health as much as genetics

Upstreamism advocate Rishi Manchanda calls us to understand health not as a "personal responsibility" but a "common good."

Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Upstreamism tasks health care professionals to combat unhealthy social and cultural influences that exist outside — or upstream — of medical facilities.
  • Patients from low-income neighborhoods are most at risk of negative health impacts.
  • Thankfully, health care professionals are not alone. Upstreamism is increasingly part of our cultural consciousness.
Keep reading Show less

Meet the Bajau sea nomads — they can reportedly hold their breath for 13 minutes

The Bajau people's nomadic lifestyle has given them remarkable adaptions, enabling them to stay underwater for unbelievable periods of time. Their lifestyle, however, is quickly disappearing.

Wikimedia Commons
Culture & Religion
  • The Bajau people travel in small flotillas throughout the Phillipines, Malaysia, and Indonesia, hunting fish underwater for food.
  • Over the years, practicing this lifestyle has given the Bajau unique adaptations to swimming underwater. Many find it straightforward to dive up to 13 minutes 200 feet below the surface of the ocean.
  • Unfortunately, many disparate factors are erasing the traditional Bajau way of life.
Keep reading Show less

Life is hard: Jordan Peterson and the nature of suffering

The Canadian professor's old-school message is why many started listening to him.

Jordan Peterson addresses students at The Cambridge Union on November 02, 2018 in Cambridge, Cambridgeshire. (Photo by Chris Williamson/Getty Images)
Personal Growth
  • The simplicity of Peterson's message on suffering echoes Buddha and Rabbi Hillel.
  • By bearing your suffering, you learn how to become a better person.
  • Our suffering is often the result of our own actions, so learn to pinpoint the reasons behind it.
Keep reading Show less

Scientists create a "lifelike" material that has metabolism and can self-reproduce

An innovation may lead to lifelike evolving machines.

Shogo Hamada/Cornell University
Surprising Science
  • Scientists at Cornell University devise a material with 3 key traits of life.
  • The goal for the researchers is not to create life but lifelike machines.
  • The researchers were able to program metabolism into the material's DNA.
Keep reading Show less