Matt Muir

Matt Muir is interested in lots of different things, and as a result rather likes the internet. Web Curios is a weekly(ish) snapshot of what he has found interesting this week. You can find Matt on Twitter, where he's quite good. In his spare time, Matt tries to ignore the web as much as is humanly possible (not very much, it turns out).

Web Curios 24/03/17

Not a good week really. Let’s not talk about it and instead stuff as much internet as possible into our ever-ravening maws in an increasingly futile attempt to make sense of anything at all

Given it’s pretty clear in 2017 that we really *are* what we consume, what mind-bending effects will be imparted by you clicking EVERY SINGLE ONE of the following links? Aside, obviously, from a real and increasing sense of your lack of import in the grand guignol horror that is life, WHO KNOWS? Let’s find out shall we? It’s WEB CURIOS.

(I really hope you’re all ok).

Web Curios 17/03/17

Is it OK that a sitting MP can be editor of one of the most influential papers in the country? It’s not, really, is it? AND YET HERE WE ARE!

Another week, then, and another succession of events which just make you want to throw your hands in the air and crack on with that experiment in intravenous opiate addiction 30 years earlier than you might originally have planned.

Seeing, though, as I totally failed to get the skag in for the weekend (fie on me!) we’re just going to have to once again try and dull the pain of existence with the finest collection of links and webspaff this side of Reddit. Panacea or placebo? SUCK THE MARROW FROM MY LINKS AND DECIDE! Happy Friday, one and all - this, as ever, is WEB CURIOS!

(Oh, and while I'm about it, if you have yet to do so then check out the Imperica Magazine for it is excellent and full of good new writing about a selection of properly wide-ranging and thought provoking stuff. Additional benefits include none of me in it). 

Web Curios 10/03/17

OH MY GOD THAT FEELS BETTER. Not that you care, but this bit is always the last thing I write in Curios; as I’m typing this it’s almost impossible to prevent a slow smile of relief from plastering itself across my hideous countenance as I luxuriate in the feeling of having purged myself of internet after what feels like three weeks of infoconstipation.

By extension, of course, that effectively means that your minds are the lucky receptacle into which I’m evacuating my backed-up webmulch - you lucky, lucky things! Anyway, THANKYOU for letting me get all this off my chest; welcome to Web Curios, back after a fortnight’s hiatus caused by technical difficulties (er, me leaving a laptop cable at work) and the necessary finalising and release of THE FIRST EVER GLORIOUS IMPERICA MAGAZINE, which you can buy here for just two units of currency and which is honestly, genuinely worth reading (FYI I am neither in it nor do I profit from it, I just think it’s GOOD).

So seeing as there’s a LOT to get through, let’s crack on shall we? Prepare to receive a high-pressure stream of thick, curdled, near-clotted internet right to the brainstem as once again I roar to a largely indifferent world that THIS IS WEB CURIOS!

Web Curios 17/02/17

Another week in which it feels like he’s doing this to all of us, all the time. I’m KNACKERED, I don’t know about you. Still, nothing to be done but keep on keeping on - I know that you’re all grateful for my indefatigable devotion to scouring the web for fresh, soothing content (no, really, no need to tell me how grateful you are) (please tell me - I am awfully needy and fragile).

Anyway, as I type this the dulcet tones of Mr Tony Blair are piping from the wireless, which is EXACTLY what the world needs right now and is a pleasing throwback to a simpler time two decades ago when none of us even knew what reality TV was, let alone that it could spawn a world leader. 

Before I slip into a reverie and spend the afternoon wallowing in nostalgia for time in which I had both curtains and a girlfriend, though, let’s me first present to you this week’s offering of links - if you could see me right now, you’d know that I am looking at you all doe-eyed and expectant, hoping that you will look favourably on these leavings and pat me on the head rather than looking askance and wrinkling your nose at the bloody mess that I’ve sullied your digital carpet with. Look, kids, it’s the sanguinating carcass of the week’s web, here splayed for you to scry with the viscera - WEB CURIOS!

Web Curios 10/02/17

Look, shall we just not talk about any of it this week? Shall we just agree that, if only for these few opening lines, we’re going to leave The World alone and just focus on the good things?

LET’S!

*tumbleweed*

Eh? Oh. Turns out that I currently appear to be incapable of focusing on anything other than THE PARLOUS STATE OF EVERYTHING right now, which make doing a breezy intro (even more) problematic (than normal). So, given that, let’s CRACK RIGHT ON with this week’s Web Curios - picking at the scabs of internet culture and presenting them to you on a slightly soiled pewter salver with an obsequious flourish! ENJOY!

Web Curios 03/02/17

Right everyone, hands up who thinks they understand the world at the moment. No, thought not. Is everything a gigantic conspiracy or a gigantic mess? CAN IT PERHAPS BE BOTH? IT’S SCHRODINGER’S FCUKUP!

Anyway, I am TIRED and I simply haven’t the stomach for ‘funnies’ about how utterly FUBARed everything seems to be; make your own if you feel the need, I have nothing for you this week.

Instead, though, what I DO have is a beautiful selection of hand-foraged (seriously, foraged is the right verb; you’d never guess quite how *dirty* I got pulling this out of the websump for your delectation) links designed to explain everything, assuage your fears and generally ameliorate your life before this whole tedious merrygoround begins aga...eh? What’s that? It literally never stops? This is what it’s going to be like until we fcuking die, perhaps getting marginally worse over time?

Hm.

Well, on that CHEERING note, let’s crack on - welcome, one and all (mostly one), to this week’s WEB CURIOS - picking the scabs off the web so you don’t have to!

Web Curios 27/01/17

DON’T PANIC! DON’T PANIC!

Ok, maybe do a little panic. Is the future a race between Musk and Trump, to see whether we manage to flee the planet before we irrevocably eff it in the a? Well, no, it almost certainly isn’t - for a start we’re all far more likely to die slowly and painfully by an infinity of self-inflicted papercuts than we are in some sort of extinction-level event, so relaaaaaaaax a bit and ENJOY THE SHOW!

I mean, it does feel ever so slightly like all we can do at this juncture is to open the metaphorical popcorn (though personally I’m advocating something less metaphorical and significantly stronger and more dulling) and see what lunacy happens next. Now, though, forget about all the mess and horror out *there* - focus on all the mess and horror in HERE instead. Welcome once again to the (mainly) weekly autopsy in which I slice from clavicle to colon and splay the still-warm viscera of the web onto a glistening slab for us to ponder. What can we scry from this week’s messily-piled infoguts? ONLY BY READING ON WILL YOU EVER LEARN. This, as ever, is WEB CURIOS!

Web Curios 13/01/2017

Is being accused of watching a bunch of sex workers urinate on an expensively-hired mattress more or less embarrassing than being accused of putting one’s penis into the mouth of a dead pig? It’s not a question I was expecting to pose myself this week, and yet here we are. Are the Russians controlling everything? Are the Russians simply working to make us think they control everything? Is Elon Musk right? Is this all just a simulation, some sort of pan-dimensional higher being’s version of The Sims (this being that point in the game when they’re so bored that they decide to just fcuk with the computerpeople; we could, in this reading of events, see much of what’s happened in the past week as their equivalent of removing all the in-game toilets)?

WHO KNOWS?! The only thing that’s been of comfort this week is that, whilst there may be a few dozen people currently alive on the planet with a reasonable grasp of what’s happening, none of those people are currently talking. Frankly, would you? Watching all the speculation would be TOO MUCH FUN.

Suffice it to say, gentle reader, that I am as baffled and scared by all of this as you - probably moreso, frankly, what with my legendary sensitivity. Thank the Lord, then, that I’ve spent the past week stitching together this poorly-woven comfort blanket of internet scraps for us all to cling to together; it’s ugly, fine, and please don’t ask me about the things you can see moving amongst the seams or why the smell simply won’t go however much you scrub it - just clutch it to yourself and think about how weird things must have gotten already in 2017 that this poorly-curated (ha! ‘curated’!) load of webspaff is sort of reassuringly normal and familiar. This, as ever, is WEB CURIOS!

(A SHORT EDITORIAL NOTE: Firstly, thanks to all of those who've been in touch with Imperica about contributing to the forthcoming magazine - my editor is VERY GRATEFUL. If you're interested in writing about art, society, culture, tech, the future and LIFE, you still have time to get in touch with your pitches to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.- DO IT. Secondly, there is a NEW NEWSLETTER coming. I know nothing about it as it's not mine, but I can categorically guarantee that it will be both shorter and better-proofed than this one, and will function as a sort of 'cultural reading list' to the week ahead. So, you know, ANTICIPATE)

Web Curios 06/01/17

And so it begins again. We return to our pens, fattened, bovine and docile after a fortnight’s enjoyment of the illusory promise of freedom, ready to once more face the uncertain future with a faltering smile and the deep-yet-unspoken hope that maybe this year will be the one in which it all just stops, just for a second.

But it won’t be. In fact, it’s all going to get faster and busier and more congested, more thick and clotted with signals and information and data and ephemera and news and anger and frustration. So, you know, deal with it. But don’t worry! Web Curios - part of the problem, definitely not part of the solution - will be here to hold your hand through what promises to be a truly interesting twelve months (in the most Chinese of senses).

Strap up, then, buckle in, and ready yourself as we start the long, slow descent into the very bowels of the information beast. IT IS ALL PROBABLY GOING TO BE FINE.

This is Web Curios.

Web Curios 16/12/16

And so, we come to the end. You don’t need to read another tired ‘wow, wasn’t that all terrible’ wrapup - we all know just how dreadful it’s been, so let’s not labour the point. Here’s hoping that we all manage to not get everything quite so wrong next year and that humanity’s signature ability to learn from its mistakes helps us out yet again.

Eh? Oh.

Anyway, pretty much as soon as I hit ‘Send’ on this fcuker I am turning off the internet for the year - I suggest that as soon as you’re done clicking EVERY SINGLE LINK in here that you do the same thing. For now, though, get ready to put yourself through the webwringer one last time - let’s squeeze this bastard until the pips veritably squeak. For the final time in 2016, THIS IS WEB CURIOS - God bless us, everyone.

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