🎧 Sheila Nevins on Age, Sex, Love, Life, and Everything Else | Clear+Vivid with Alan Alda

Listened to Sheila Nevins on Age, Sex, Love, Life, and Everything Else by Alan Alda from Clear+Vivid with Alan Alda

Sheila Nevins has explored the human condition in the thousand or so documentaries she produced for HBO. From more than 30 years of telling us stories about ourselves, to her experience as a woman in the workplace, Sheila has plenty to say about communicating. And she never holds back. In this delightful episode, Alan Alda talks with Sheila about her life, how she feels about aging, the movement, sex, divorce, documentaries, storytelling, and just about everything else! This episode is sponsored by Calm. Check out www.calm.com/alda for more details.

I always forget that Sheila is as old as she is. She does have a great sense of humor.

She makes an interesting point about humility that people with power (and especially within the entertainment industry) should be aware of and work to improve.

Most shocking was the story she tells about her me too moment and how she viewed it. Definitely a perspective I wouldn’t have expected.

Her perspective about looking at individuals as a way into human problems and making documentaries is similar to a philosophy I remember hearing from Masha Gessen in an interview that Jeffrey Goldberg did with her. The upshot is that, especially for righting wrongs and general atrocities, focusing a story on a particular individual has a lot more power than focusing on the nameless and faceless masses. Sheila’s example of the Holocaust survivor is a particular apt one. (As I think about it Masha would be a great interview for this podcast.)

In fact, I recently watched an immigration related documentary on Frontline and while I didn’t personally find the lead woman very relate-able or sympathetic, I was still pissed off at the process because her individual story was still so powerful.

This general ideal also reminds me of the gut-punch scene at the end of the film A Time To Kill (1996) [spoiler alert] which ends with the command to the jury “Now imagine she’s white.”

👓 Mario Batali officially out at all 16 of his restaurants, including Mozzaplex in L.A. | LA Times

Read Mario Batali officially out at all 16 of his restaurants, including Mozzaplex in L.A. (latimes.com)
The celebrity chef, who has been accused of sexual harassment and sexual misconduct spanning at least two decades, no longer has a financial stake in his former restaurant empire.

👓 Casey Affleck Addresses Sexual Harassment Allegations | Variety

Read Casey Affleck Apologizes for ‘Unprofessional’ Behavior Amid Me Too Backlash by Tara Bitran (Variety)
In an interview with the Associated Press, Affleck admitted to contributing to an unprofessional environment on the set of “I’m Still Here,” which was shot in 2008 and 2009. “I tolerated that kind of behavior from other people and I wish that I hadn’t. And I regret a lot of that,” Affleck, who directed, produced, and co-wrote the film, said. “I really did not know what I was responsible for as the boss. I don’t even know if I thought of myself as the boss. But I behaved in a way and allowed others to behave in a way that was really unprofessional. And I’m sorry.”

Someone has either coached him and/or he’s got a great publicist helping him out. He was never eloquent enough to pull off statements like these in my experience.

👓 Professor accused of touching student while watching steamy flick sues victim New York Post

Read Professor accused of touching student while watching steamy flick sues victim (New York Post)
An ousted Princeton professor who was accused of getting handsy with a 25-year-old student is targeting her again in a new lawsuit — by trying to force her to appear in person at a hearing about hi…

I think he should just give up already. He’s only making it worse, and it’s not helping his reputation.

👓 #MeToo law restricts use of nondisclosure agreements in sexual misconduct cases | LA Times

Read #MeToo law restricts use of nondisclosure agreements in sexual misconduct cases (latimes.com)
Among victims and advocates, an important step in dismantling the pervasive problem of harassment and the system that has kept it under wraps for so long is to void or curb the use of NDAs to settle sexual abuse cases.

The tough part is recreating a better system and predicting the potential future abuses that may continue in such a system. How do we enforce fairness fairly? What unintended consequences might there be?

👓 Neil deGrasse Tyson and the Careers That Weren’t | The Atlantic

Read Neil deGrasse Tyson and the Careers That Weren’t (The Atlantic)
The women who have accused the famed science educator of sexual impropriety have made claims not just about traumatized minds, but also about traumatized careers.  

🎧 ‘The Daily’: Letting Louis C.K. Back Onstage | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Letting Louis C.K. Back Onstage from New York Times

Nine months after admitting to sexual misconduct with multiple women, Louis C.K. dropped into a New York City comedy club unannounced and tried to make a comeback. And then he returned, again and again. We talk to the club owner who gave him that stage.

An interesting story that brings up an important philosophical question. It’s one thing for phenomenally rich people who could otherwise have retired and disappeared, but how this plays out will also inform how it will affect other lesser famous people going forward as well.

🎧 The Daily: Special Episode: The Last ‘Year of the Woman’ | New York Times

Listened to The Daily: Special Episode: The Last ‘Year of the Woman’ by Michael Barbaro from New York Times

We speak to Senator Dianne Feinstein about why 2018 has been called the Year of the Woman, a moniker that comes from the historic elections of 1992.

👓 Hopkins faculty promote better climate in machine learning | Hopkins CSW

Read Hopkins faculty promote better climate in machine learning (Women Faculty Forum at Homewood)
Today, 122 Hopkins faculty, post-docs, and grad students make a call to promote welcoming environments for women at machine learning conferences. In recognition of egregious behavior at recent conf…

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👓 Name Change | N.I.P.S.

Read NIPS Name Change by Terrence Sejnowski, Marian Stewart Bartlett, Michael Mozer, Corinna Cortes, Isabelle Guyon, Neil D. Lawrence, Daniel D. Lee, Ulrike von Luxburg, Masashi Sugiyama, Max Welling (nips.cc)

As many of you know, there has been an ongoing discussion concerning the name of the Neural Information Processing Systems conference. The current acronym NIPS has unintended connotations that some members of the community find offensive.

Following several well-publicized incidents of insensitivity at past conferences, and our acknowledgement of other less-publicized incidents, we conducted community polls requesting alternative names, rating the existing and alternative names, and soliciting additional comments.

After extensive discussions, the NIPS Board has decided not to change the name of the conference for now. The poll itself did not yield a clear consensus on a name change or a well-regarded alternative name.

This just makes me sick…

👓 Tenured Faculty Position at Princeton University | IEEE Information Theory Society

Read Tenured Faculty Position at Princeton University (itsoc.org)
The Department of Electrical Engineering at Princeton University seeks outstanding applicants for a tenured appointment at the Associate or Full Professor level, effective as early as September 1, 2019. The search is open to candidates specializing in areas related to information sciences and systems, with strength in core fundamentals and an interest in applications areas such as networks, machine learning, energy systems, cyber-physical systems, robotics and control, wireless communications, biology, etc. The successful candidate should have a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering or a related field, demonstrated excellence in academic research, and a proven track record of teaching and advising undergraduate and graduate students (if currently holding an academic appointment). We seek faculty members who will create a climate that embraces excellence and diversity, with a strong commitment to teaching and mentoring that will enhance the work of the department and attract and retain a diverse student body. Candidates must complete an online faculty application at: https://www.princeton.edu/acad-positions/position/4801; a detailed curriculum vitae, descriptions of teaching and research interests, reprints of selected publications, and the names and addresses of three references should be uploaded as .pdf documents via the on-line application. This position is subject to Princeton University's background check policy. To ensure full consideration, applications should be received by November 15, 2018, but the search will remain open until the position is filled.

Wow! Verdu hasn’t even started experiencing entropy yet…

👓 U. confirms Verdu’s dismissal following misconduct investigation | The Princetonian

Read U. confirms Verdu's dismissal following misconduct investigation (The Princetonian)
On Friday night, Assistant Vice President for Communications Dan Day confirmed that professor Sergio Verdú was dismissed from the faculty as of Sept. 24 following a University investigation into his conduct in relation to University policies that prohibit consensual relations with students and require honesty and cooperation in University matters.

🎧 ‘The Daily’: Revisiting What Happened to Anita Hill | New York Times

Listened to ‘The Daily’: Revisiting What Happened to Anita Hill by Michael Barbaro from New York Times

The law professor testified against Judge Clarence Thomas during his confirmation hearings in 1991. What has changed since?

👓 The harm of harmless jokes | lu popolvuh – Medium

Read The harm of harmless jokes by lu popolvuh (lu popolvuh – Medium)
A #MeTooSTEM story about requesting a change in tradition

I’ve followed bits of this story for a while since it touches on an area I follow, but I had no idea the harassment was so terrible. The Romeo and Juliette business is just deplorable.

👓 FIFA want fewer women shown on TV at WC | ESPN

Read FIFA want fewer women shown on TV at WC (ESPN.com)
FIFA wants fewer images of attractive women in World Cup stadiums shown on future broadcasts, with sexism a bigger problem than racism in Russia.