Craig Newmark is Not an Ideologue

Newmark:    The term ideology has been pretty badly abused.  One take an ideology as this Liberal-Conservative spectrum which is purely destructive these days.  There’s ideology implicit in American values.  Again, the Constitution, the Declaration of Independence, and I pretty much go with that, along with the notion, again, that you want to treat people like you want to be treated.  You want to get stuff done, you want to figure out what works.  You want to alleviate suffering when you can.  That’s a kind of ideology.  I have fully bought into that.  That seems to be the ideology, if you want to call that, of the new administration.  The idea is to forget, to some extent, about political parties to get done what people need in this country to be done, and I’m onboard.

Question: Are you an activist?

Newmark:    I’m not an activist, I’m just a guy, from my point of view, who is standing up for other people.  This is a new and exciting time and, remember I do customer service at Craigslist [IB] and I’ve been doing that for almost 14 years now, and that’s kind of routine.  But now and then I have this time machine fantasy, what would life be if I was around during the war for independence, maybe World War II, maybe [the beat] era?  Right now, we’re in the middle of an era kind of like all that and more.  The course of human history is changing right now, and we’re all part of that to the extent we want to be, and I guess I’m playing a, oh, a microscopic role, but it’s something.

Craig Newmark says he just supports doing what needs to get done to move the country forward.

​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
  • Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Keep reading Show less

Apparently even NASA is wrong about which planet is closest to Earth

Three scientists publish a paper proving that Mercury, not Venus, is the closest planet to Earth.

Strange Maps
  • Earth is the third planet from the Sun, so our closest neighbor must be planet two or four, right?
  • Wrong! Neither Venus nor Mars is the right answer.
  • Three scientists ran the numbers. In this YouTube video, one of them explains why our nearest neighbor is... Mercury!
Keep reading Show less

Saying no is hard. These communication tips make it easy.

You can say 'no' to things, and you should. Do it like this.

  • Give yourself permission to say "no" to things. Saying yes to everything is a fast way to burn out.
  • Learn to say no in a way that keeps the door of opportunity open: No should never be a one-word answer. Say "No, but I could do this instead," or, "No, but let me connect you to someone who can help."
  • If you really want to say yes but can't manage another commitment, try qualifiers like "yes, if," or "yes, after."
Keep reading Show less