Think. Again.
October 25, 2008 3:40 PM   Subscribe

From The Atlantic, a fun bunch of montages of interesting people answering questions like "What is the cost of being a nerd?", "When is evil cool?" and "Are good books bad for you?" (Accompanies a redesign of magazine as well as of the web site. In seeking readers and advertisers, publications like The Atlantic and The Economist, known as thought-leader magazines, have long tried to make up in cleverness what they lack in wallet power.)
posted by Non Prosequitur (27 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
when was The Economist a thought leader?
posted by Non Prosequitur at 3:43 PM on October 25, 2008

(Think) Before You Die
posted by Caduceus at 3:55 PM on October 25, 2008

I know that before I have any thoughts, I first ask myself WWTAOET ("What Would The Atlantic Or Economist Think?").
posted by DU at 4:49 PM on October 25, 2008

"When is evil cool?"

In fiction.
posted by SaintCynr at 4:57 PM on October 25, 2008 [2 favorites]

All of the content is buried in a flash file, and the articles try to pop-up in a new window. Super fun.

Oh, also the flash file plays sound sometimes, but other times doesn't.

Oh, and the 'interesting people' are a dozen or so random people-on-the-streets. Sort of like the 'interesting people' who answer the corn-ball questions on Real Sex.
posted by paisley henosis at 5:09 PM on October 25, 2008

Have you cleared your bile duct yet? I found them interesting because they seemed such archetypes.
posted by Non Prosequitur at 5:17 PM on October 25, 2008

I enjoyed it, Non Prosequitur, thanks. Flash (non-game) sites ain't looked kindly upon round these parts, though, so some bile duct cleaning is to be expected.
posted by treepour at 5:27 PM on October 25, 2008

wow, those are wonderful photographs. I'm still getting lost in their blog and have yet to read half of that subsite but it's a wonderful idea and a great FPP.

when was The Economist a thought leader?
I ask myself a similar question every time I read their abhorrent image captions.
posted by krautland at 5:35 PM on October 25, 2008

Thanks for the heads-up, Non Prosequitur.

I like The Atlantic a lot--they've got a great history, and the magazine redesign looks good. Although I'm more of a big-blocks-of-text guy myself, the new website is ambitious, and I wish them all the success in the world with this exciting venture. Right up to the moment where they decide to take down the old archives, anyway.
posted by box at 5:41 PM on October 25, 2008

It reminded me of Real Sex, too, but not necessarily in a bad way.

There are some gems. I liked when the guy was saying that evil is cool when it's spelled backward and a guy behind him tripped up the escalator.
posted by lampoil at 6:31 PM on October 25, 2008

hey, that was really cool, actually. The photographs with the question in neon lights are awesome, but I kind of wish the video wouldn't have the wrong question in the background 80% of the time, that really threw me off.
posted by lou at 8:11 PM on October 25, 2008

I was hoping that the "interesting people answering questions" would be authors, political leaders, activists, poets, etc.

Studs Terkel, why does your dog pretend to like you?
posted by Solon and Thanks at 8:31 PM on October 25, 2008

Slate also redesigned. If we are going to be doing redesign press releases for major news sites.
posted by srboisvert at 11:02 PM on October 25, 2008 [1 favorite]

Will the next issue have Dos and Don'ts?
posted by The Straightener at 11:06 PM on October 25, 2008

The "When Is Evil Cool?" essay tied together some interesting little stories. Thanks for posting this.
posted by voltairemodern at 11:20 PM on October 25, 2008

I really like this post. When watching each video, I ended up thinking about how I would want to answer each question if an interviewer came up to me on the street and asked it to me. It's a fun mental exercise. It's hard to come up with questions that can encourage people to think before they respond, and I think the makers did a good job. The videos are well-edited and the essays are well-writen.

This is my favorite Metafilter link in a while. Thanks.
posted by painquale at 12:48 AM on October 26, 2008

The idiotic new Atlantic redesign has 540 pixels of giant logos and ads above the content; this leaves a whopping 176 pixels of content visible without scrolling on my maximized browser window. "Designers" who never test their sites except on an Apple Cinema Display should be be taken behind the barn and shot.

(I read Slate via my awesome text-only filter or I'd be complaining about their redesign too.)
posted by nicwolff at 1:10 AM on October 26, 2008 [1 favorite]

Not that I don't love The Atlantic, but this is the sort of post that makes me think someone from The Atlantic posted this as part of the marketing campaign for the redesign roll out.
posted by nax at 3:56 AM on October 26, 2008

I just threw in the notes about the redesign because I thought it'd be amiss to post the videos without mentioning the NYT article.
posted by Non Prosequitur at 4:10 AM on October 26, 2008

I really like the cinematography in these. The questions are valid, but the answers are a bit trite.

All is forgiven however because that's MC Frontalot!

posted by slimepuppy at 4:11 AM on October 26, 2008

when was The Economist a thought leader?

Well, they are. Though The Economist is overrated, it's pretty widely read and is pretty much the paper of record for the neoliberal consensus.
posted by atrazine at 4:23 AM on October 26, 2008

I really don't like Atlantic's redesign, especially in the print edition (to which I subscribe.) The "Think Again" site is interesting, but the unintended irony of the vignettes' superficiality vs. the stated motivation for the project makes me cringe.

The Economist might be a neo-liberal echo chamber, but I still find it worthwhile. The signal to noise ratio is reliably high, and a lot of information (for a news magazine) is presented. Its analytical perspective on socio-political aspects of stories tends to be somewhat staid, but I can supply that on my own.
posted by snuffleupagus at 7:31 AM on October 26, 2008

I think I like the advertising more than the video pieces.

But the quote about trying to access people where their minds are most at rest? I'm trying to think of things to plot on a Venn diagram where advertising genius (pure, thrilling genius) doesn't intersect with either subtle or overt trampling on the remaining real and unmarketed bits of our lives.
posted by carbide at 8:09 AM on October 26, 2008

Usually I can master a flash interface, but man, I wish I could see the photos without having to hit like sixty buttons for each one. Can't we just have a traditional slideshow anymore?

I'm guessing by the comments that I should go back and watch the videos, but I don't know if I can stand it. Hrmph.

This design is evil and someone at the Atlantic thought it was cool.
posted by grapefruitmoon at 10:38 AM on October 26, 2008

Not that I don't love The Atlantic, but this is the sort of post that makes me think someone from The Atlantic posted this as part of the marketing campaign for the redesign roll out.

Well, you know, since Non Prosequitur is right here and responding with comments ... why don't you ask him to his (virtual) face instead of making unfounded accusations?

Hey, Non Prosequitur, you don't happen to work for or represent The Atlantic, do you?

I liked the Flash site, which is a rarity. Everything worked for me.

I enjoyed the videos, but wish they didn't repeat so many people. The style is great, though.

I like how Internet culture is turning Warhol's "15 minutes of fame" into "3 seconds of non-fame, over and over again." (Like the guy who said "Women are under men. Men are under God, and women are under men. Get it straight, dude.")

Fun stuff. Thanks, NP.
posted by mrgrimm at 10:45 AM on October 26, 2008

I only read The Atlantic for the Answer Fella.
posted by turgid dahlia at 3:19 PM on October 26, 2008

mrgrimm, there ya go.
posted by nax at 4:16 PM on October 26, 2008

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