Links: Stuff I’m Posting Really Quickly

There’s no overarching theme to today’s links; I’m just trying to clear up my bookmarks and tabs, and this stuff seemed worth sharing (albeit hurriedly).

Blogging for Health, Knowledge, Fame: Grand Text Auto has a really interesting experiment going in blog-based peer review. Graphic Engine offers some thoughts on the benefits of academic blogging. offers some helpful DOs and DON’Ts for the would-be academic blogger. And, though not specifically related to academics, you may be interested in this report on recent research that suggests that people who blog and use social networking sites feel happier and more connected to others.

Gamers Striking Out: Awhile back, Fox News got someone on the air to slam Mass Effect for being sexually obscene. As Seth Schiesel explains, however, the person they put on camera was clueless, and gamers struck back by tanking the reviews of her book on Amazon.

Also, I was totally fascinated by this Wired article on griefers. I’m not sure how much of this kind of behavior is about being a jerk versus making an ideological statement (i.e., “don’t take your game world too seriously”), but it certainly raises some interesting questions.

These two stories don’t have very much in common, but to me, they both seem like examples of how you can make a statement with real impact by subverting the norms of online behavior.

Sort-of Real Superheroes: One link (courtesy Hipster, Please!) from way back on people who dress up like superheroes in real life, and one link (via Emily and others) about the superhero-themed restaurant coming to my own city of Philadelphia. Also, Michael Chabon writes about superhero costumes for the New Yorker (which I’ll probably return to in another post later).

Rebranding an Otaku Magazine: Kind of in the same tradition of Wizard now openly billing itself as a “men’s pop culture magazine” (as noted here), ADV revamps PiQ to be about geek/otaku culture more broadly, branded as “entertainment for the rest of us, squarely addressing the needs of a cutting-edge young male audience” (link via Chris C.).

Geek Culture Is Now Bullies’ Culture Too: I was, I must admit, both repulsed and fascinated to read about bullies “teabagging” another boy at school. This is probably an indication that FPS gaming is “mainstream” children’s entertainment fare, not just being played by the nerds who get picked on. It’s also worth noting that the antisocial behavior that kids picked up from gaming has nothing to do with normal, in-game violence (involving shooting and elbowing in the face in Halo, for example), but a sort of “content” that players themselves generated.

3 thoughts on “Links: Stuff I’m Posting Really Quickly

  1. I wouldn’t really call it a “revamp” at all since PiQ didn’t exist in any previous form. PiQ is an entirely new magazine and despite what any press release says, it’s up to our staff and our readers to determine what goes in the book, certainly not ADV or any other studio/licensor. Leave it to our PR folks to make us sound totally lame.

  2. Thanks for the clarification, Robert. The author of the post linked here does seem a little confused himself by the media kit’s claim that this is a “name change,” but I’m sure there are legal-ese and business reasons why the PR folks would insist as much.

    If you happen to be following the comments on this still, I’m interested in your take on that author’s comparison between PiQ and Wizard. There’s already a bit of hostility among some comics fans toward the latter, but PiQ, of course, has the potential to get going with a clean slate. If you don’t mind my asking, how do you envision it as being similar to or dissimilar from other magazines of this category?

  3. Being in the magazine business, of course we’re aware of how other magazines have grown and/or evolved over the years. We’re still very much based around anime as our core, but being free to branch out into other areas of entertainment is not only part of the plan, but also a necessity. It shouldn’t be any secret by now that the anime market isn’t what it used to be even just a couple of years ago, and barring some massive turnaround, to attempt to cover it from end-to-end (and do it well) is only going to become harder as time goes on.

    Instead, we’re trying to find a healthy balance of anime/manga and other entertainment that crosses over (or into) those genres. We’re not interested in covering “mainstream” entertainment unless we can bring something new and unique to it, and so, people’s fears about PiQ going all “Entertainment Tonight” are completely false. We just ask for people to give it a chance and see for themselves.

Comments are closed.