THE PSEUDOSCIENTIST | The Group Chat: Redefining Friendship One Message at a Time

While reading through my group chat notifications the other day, I noticed a little scuffle building in one of the groups chats that I was in: What had begun with a playful changing around of group nicknames soon escalated to personal jabs at different group members and real life drama. And at this I scoffed. For someone to be actually hurt by something said in a less-than-half-serious online space where memes, stickers and other online shenanigans run rampant is absolutely childish, no? Possibly, but reflecting upon my own experiences, this isn’t the first time, nor the first group chat that I’ve been in that’s had its online problems leak into the real world. Experiences like these that have led me to question: Is there something more to group chats?

COLLINS | I (Streamed) it First


Over the past few years, it has become accepted wisdom that you cannot write comprehensively about music listening without writing about streaming services. According to Digital Media Ramblings’s statistics report from May, more than 350 million people use streaming services, and almost 200 million use the big three — Pandora, Spotify and iHeart Radio. The numbers do not include multiple service users (myself included, as a patron of Spotify, Pandora and 8tracks), but the point remains — people stream music a whole lot. The streaming coin has two faces. Artists and cynics allege that, as music becomes hyper-accessible, listeners’ appreciation of the musicians plummets.