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🗞 𝙿𝚎𝚜𝚜𝚒𝚖𝚒𝚜𝚝𝚜 𝙰𝚛𝚌𝚑𝚒𝚟𝚎 Roundup
💉 Anti-Vaccine Fever (1915)
This week in 1896 Almroth Wright created the typhoid fever vaccination, by the year 1914, it was being given to the general public. In 1915 a newspaper noted that anti-vaxxers of the time were trying to discredit it - the piece cited various data points from its use in the military to prove them wrong.
📻 Radio Face (1925)
The “Radio Face” was a condition that supposedly gave women wrinkles, some reported “a faint network of lines” appearing on their faces after extensive radio listening.
“The strain of trying to catch every word of wireless broadcast constantly puckers the lines around the sides of her mouth”.
🛹 Skating to the Olympics
Skateboarding was considered a strange and childish phenomenon for much of its existence. Congregating youths and noise created many a local legislative wars waged by annoyed residents, skating bans were common and urban designers started to make outside spaces less skate-able. In Norway, from 1978-1989, skating was banned altogether.
In 2021 skateboarding has finally been christened a ‘real’ sport thanks to its inclusion in the Olympic Games, but even still anti-Skateboarding posters appeared around Tokyo.
😷 SF Has Gone Back to the Masks (Again)
With the rise of the delta variant, San Francisco has gone back to the masks. In the 1918 Spanish Flu pandemic a similar dynamic played out, mask rules were repealed and then re-instated after a spike in cases.
Checkout a run down of mask resistance from the 1918 pandemic:
💃🦠 What a Fluzy (1919)
In 1919, a doctor claimed that women and their fashion choices affected the spread of the Spanish Flu. Dr. Baker claimed that the more skin women displayed, the broader the spread of the flu would be.
“Women who appear on fourth street exposing one-third of their legs and two-thirds of their chests are courting influenza instead of trying to prevent it.”
🖥 Don’t Think Different
On August 15th, 1998, the first iMac was released. It epitomised ‘thinking different’: it was colourful and translucent, instead of beige and opaque. The computer was IN the monitor and there was no floppy drive, for some an unthinkable omission.
Turns out thinking different isn’t popular, at first. Apple has always got flak for doing it, we did a run down:
🎺 Not Being Racist But… Jazz is the Devil (1922)
The objection to Jazz in the 1920s had lots of racist undercurrents. The origin of Jazz is traced back to the African-American communities of New Orleans, Louisiana, with roots in blues and ragtime.
Like rap in more recent times, many claimed their objection to Jazz had nothing to do with its link to the African American community. A good example is this double page spread titled “The Outcry Against Jazz Not Based on Mere Prejudice, But Due to Very Alarming Facts” that insisted “A startling Array of Information Upon the Dangerous Effects of the Widespread Jazz Spirit Has been Gathered by a Well-Known Social Suvey Specialist.”
👨🏻⚖️ Crypto No No
Cryptocurrency regulations slipped into the infrastructure bill caused a heated debate on Twitter and a rush to advocate for amendments. The initial proposals were as short sighted as past proposals to regulate emerging technologies, including a core technology of crypto-currencies: cryptography. We gathered some examples of misguided regulations of emerging technologies from the past:
🎙 Pessimists Aloud Podcast
Hear article readings from the archive, performed by a professional voice actor with old digitized records as backing music. Look out for 1918 anti-mask article readings going up soon!