Ezra Klein’s new venture, Vox.com, which that numskull Jeff Bezos refused to fund to the tune of $10+million has as its mission to explain everything you need to know about complicated subjects. For instance, if you want to know why confiscatory taxation is a really good thing, then you can read Matthew Yglesias’ epic Beyond the Laffer Curve–the case for confiscatory taxation.
A couple of days ago a chick there named Kelsey McKinney @mckinneykelsey , who allegedly covers culture, decided to ‘splain how to look at technology and why generations should be known by the dominant technology not cut into nice year groups.
Looking at the data, it’s easy to argue that generations of people no longer exist in neat baby-boomer time periods. Instead of years, we should label generations by the dominant technology they use. In doing so, we might have more, smaller generations, but maybe that’s okay.
There are lots of obvious problems with this strategy if you were born before, oh, 1990. Calling a generation the “Fire” generation or the “Wheel” generation and having in cover several thousand years is not all that useful.
When Matt Novak at Gizmodo critiqued the story a funny thing happened. It was edited and the changes weren’t made transparent to the reader.
[Update: It looks like Vox has heavily edited their original story by creating a new lede, referencing research by the FCC and Pew Research, and correcting factual errors like their conflation of the invention of the internet with the invention of the web. They’ve also swapped out their original “Technology Adoption” graph with a new one and added an additional graph with data from the FCC. None of these edits are noted in the piece. But they appear to be sticking with their original argument anyway, so the critique below still stands.]
Bezos made a wise decision not to entrust Ezra Klein with $10million of his hard earned money. So far Vox.com is nothing more than a talking points generator for the marginally literate left who can’t handle the intellectual rigor of Daily Kos. And it is less than candid in the bargain.