The Hidden Biases Our Internet Memes Help Propagate

By Maddie Stone on at

Welcome to Reading List, a collection of great tech reads from around the web. Today we're exploring the hidden biases of internet memes, the science of artificial testicles, whether the Apple Watch’s success depends on its ability to turn us all into big jerks, and more! Enjoy.

  • A team of researchers has conduced the most comprehensive study of Internet memes to date, analysing the fifty most popular English-language meme “families.” Their analysis reveals the hidden biases woven into the propagation of information and culture on the web. [Washington Post]
  • Scientists are working to develop the world’s first artificial testicle, a device that promises to turn any living cell into sperm. As weird as it sounds, in the future, making babies may require little more than a cheek swab. [Vice]
  • Having an Invisible Girlfriend may give you a convenient cover story, but psychologically, a fake digital relationship can take a toll. A fascinating read on the Invisible Girlfriend service from Steve Rousseau, a writer who became a bit too smitten with invisible Mila. [Digg]
  • Are Facebook and Twitter users really different tribes? There may be more cross pollination between the two social media giants than you think. Twitter, Michael Roston argues, is where we first learn about the news, while Facebook is where we go to digest it. [Medium]
  • If the Apple Watch succeeds, it won’t be because it’s a better watch. It’ll succeed if it can create a new way for its users to be rude, exclusionary arseholes. [The Awl]
  • Five years ago, a short lived “immortality” service offered its customers a way to create a digital doppleganger of themselves that would live on after they died. It was an interesting idea, but, as its users quickly learned, immortality can’t be guaranteed if you’re depending on a company that may go out of business. [Fusion]