My ideas on how to at least moderately scale the community without it going to shirt.

Not actually a clubhouse, but rather the South San Francisco town hall

So there’s this hot new social voice-based gathering place called the Clubhouse. I’m not important enough to be a member, but I’m smart and battle-scarred enough to have ideas on moderately scaling it.

You see, at the moment it’s apparently a nice place… free of spammers, trolls, abusive jerks, and other assorted unlikeables. Why is this? Well, probably for three reasons:

  1. And such folks generally invite other reasonable and decent people.
  2. And, yep, it’s invite only.

That’s all well and good except for two key problems:

From my understanding, Uber ratings currently work like this for drivers:
- 5 star average: Fine
- 4, 3, or 2 star average: You’ll be fired soon.
- 1 star average: You’re toast

Given this situation (which seems similar across other services with a 1–5 star rating system as well), riders seem to rate like this:
- 5 stars: Fine. Or amazing! Or kinda-poor-but-I-don’t-want-the-driver-to-be-fired!
- 4 stars: Pretty awful!
- 3 or 2 stars: (Mostly unused?)

Who knows which screwy situation begat the other one, but here we are, eh?

My hope is…

We need to persuade through defiant love, not anger.

As someone who is beset by deep disappointment and fear given the state of the U.S. today, I appreciate the intent of calling for a nationwide strike. But I’m concerned that this action would be harmful and ineffective in making our country a better place.

First, there’s the threat to our health and welfare, with medical professionals, police, and other folks in critical positions staying home for a day.

Second, there’s the issue of lost wages for the many, many people who are paid hourly.

The scrappy solution for a 2 minute timer. Buzzer not included.

There’d be no running over time or interrupting, and candidates would be under more pressure to actually answer questions.

Specifically, this debate would feature…

  • Mic automatically turned off at the 2:10 mark.
  • Mics only turned on for one candidate at a time and only when invited to speak by the moderator. Yes, that would mean no interruptions. None. Nada.
  • Three “didn’t answer the question” strikes in a row would result in the other candidate getting a free minute to say anything they want.


The only smart choice is for Twitter to smash the 140 character barrier and make these bad workarounds unnecessary

Do you like getting voicemail? Probably not.

Sure, it’s more convenient for the sender, since they can likely speak faster than type.

But for you, the receiver? You have to spend extra time processing the info, and it’s not even feasible to listen to voicemail in many contexts (e.g, in a meeting, a loud carnival, etc.).

With voicemails, the sender prioritizes their convenience over yours. It’s almost certainly not an intentional or even conscious slight, but it’s frustrating just the same.

Just like with voicemail, tweetstorms and image-pasted “tweetgifs” prioritize the convenience of the sender over the receiver. …

Theatrical release poster by Drew Struzan

When does it make sense to import a story from your blog vs. just cutting and pasting the content into a new Medium post?

I’ve started importing some old entries from my blog at [example] and I’ve noticed a few things in the process:

When importing an article into Medium…

  • The date of the original article is used for the new Medium post. This is shown on the top of the article, and it also determines where the article is listed in one’s Stats page and Medium profile.
  • A notice and link to the original post are automatically appended to the Medium draft.
  • Image annotations don’t seem to get transferred.
  • Basic text formatting and links seem to get imported just fine.

What I don’t know yet (despite reading the Medium post on importing)

  • How, if at all, are imported articles surfaced…

Streets of Taipei — photo by Adam Lasnik, 2012

Why did you forsake me?

I was destined for you and only you.

Four days and three nights I journeyed… uncomfortably, sometimes indirectly and yet purposefully. Ever in darkness, but dreaming I would once again see the light. That I would see you, be touched by you.

I sat waiting for you, silently, ever hopeful.

And then… you came to meet me, to hold me and bring me into your home.

But I soon realized I was not alone. There were others — prettier, less common— that caught your eye. I saw you smile at the more petite one beside me before you even deigned to gaze upon me.

Suddenly, I was fully naked in your presence

I could only hope…

Anyone know the source of this? I’d love to give credit!

She walked into the class and noticed right away that no other students looked like her.

All men. Many seemed to already be acquainted, or in a few cases, fast friends. Clearly they’d been through similar classes before.

And halfway through the class, her fears were realized; everyone was more experienced than she was. More skilled. More at ease. More confident.

She stumbled again. What was she doing here? She didn’t belong, and of course everyone knew it.

What were they thinking? Were they amused at how out-of-her-element she was? Annoyed that she was taking up space that could have been filled with someone more competent, someone that belonged here?

Were they staring at her? No…

Whereupon I yell at clouds about people being increasingly self-absorbed and selfish in public spaces.

My friend and I were FirstWorldChatting about farmers’ markets and the like, when a stranger suddenly waded into the communal hot tub and loudly proclaimed, “NO! That’s just whacked!”

Whoa. I mean, okay, maybe he’s just very opinionated about his organic produce. Weird, but hey, whatever.

Turns out, no, he’s just yet another clueless twit who either doesn’t understand the concept of public space or, perhaps more likely, simply doesn’t give a fig. To clarify, he had joined us in the hot tub while in the middle of a heated discussion with someone on his cell phone. Who does that?!

Adapted from a post I wrote on on June 14, 2009; I feel my sentiments are even more relevant today, especially given the current Twitter fracas re potential changes

Back in 2009, I learned about the turmoil in Iran… from the blogosphere. Some folks insisted that the immediacy of news on this and other breaking topics was a sign that mainstream media had failed, and that online media — specifically “real time” components of social media — had triumphed. But I believe such an assumption is (and was) not only dead wrong, but also dangerous to society.

One day…

Adam Lasnik

I travel, dance, play piano, work for (but do NOT speak on behalf of) Google and more.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store