The Mammoth in the Room

The Mammoth in the Room

It’s starting to look like Musical Chairs in the Social Media Games. Are you on Mastodon? Do you know what it is? I’m in it for the third time. The third time is the charm, right? Shortly after settling down after a considered approach to making a personalized account I was struck by the calm. The space to breathe. The lack of voiced chaos. It was eerily familiar.

In a stroke of curiosity I switched tabs to look at the current Twitter trends. Far-right personalities, nazis and a billionaire throwing one of his temper tantrums. Nope, not having that today.

I’ve always been a computer geek. It’s almost embarrassing to admit that it’s taken me so long to commit to a social media network that is so much closer to my values than any of the other online hangouts I frequent.

From embarrassment can come insight.

Mastodon is not a Twitter replacement. Getting started is not intuitive. Finding and following people is an obstacle course. Deciding where to even create an account is like trying to decide on a Netflix movie with the family on a Friday night.

But it’s ever so rewarding for me when I settle in.

I’m not trying to market Mastodon to you. I’m saying I’m finding my way back to who I am. One part of the puzzle has also been to revisit and claim my space on – a software system I five years ago helped finance through Kickstarter. As a tech-involved writer it’s satisfying to have a judgement-free zone to publish random tidbits that also offers RSS, a modern JSON feed, and backups to Github and the Internet Archive. And also pulls in pings from all my various publications.

You don’t have to know what half of that means. Just that it makes me happy. It took a friend from the past to reach out and remind me of these possibilities as I was publicly complaining about the state of the web. A friend who was part of an early, large community of tekkies in Sweden in the 90s, a mailing list known as Trafik.

And this is my insight, that given time to reflect and assess, I had a pretty good grasp over who I was and who I wanted to be in my early twenties. It’s nice to make that acquaintance again.

You never know what might come of sitting down with your younger self and having them ask you: “Who are you?” and also, perhaps: “Who did you want to be?”


A black and white photo of a young Per Axbom on a cliff outside, with a fair amount of hair blowing in the wind.

A bit of new content by me

The Trouble Diamond
Asking the right questions for moral management at each stage of the design process. A tool you can start using today.

A Brief Mastodon Guide for Social Media Worriers
Tips and advice for getting started with Mastodon. Especially if you’re used to Twitter. I’m really falling for Mastodon this time around.

That unpleasant job posting from Nielsen Norman Group
How a job posting communicates culture and values. Are you ready to join the elite? Many UX people have reached out thanking me for this blog post.

Coaching teams in design and tech
New landing page for my coach offering. Tailored coaching sessions for teams, meeting for about a day per month during six months. For optimal effect the group coaching is complemented with individual sessions.

Digital drive with Per Axbom
New landing page for retainer-based consulting. Hire me 1,2 or 3 days a month over a year. Get access to expertise in design, coaching, facilitation, communication, education, time-saving tools and more.

Noteworthy content
I have an ongoing Twitter thread of content I’ve written, spoken, produced or hosted. This is the “memo” version of that thread. I’ll keep adding to it as I create new outputs, or remember more of the old, that deserve being featured. 😊

This Startup Promised People Free Crypto If They Scanned Their Eyeballs.
The Sam Altman–founded company Worldcoin says it aims to alleviate global poverty, but so far it has angered the very people it claims to be helping. An example of biometric abuse.

Face scanner Clearview AI aims to branch out beyond police
A controversial face recognition company that’s built a massive photographic dossier of the world’s people for use by police, national governments, and most recently the Ukrainian military, is now planning to offer its technology to banks and other private businesses.

Europe Is Building a Huge International Facial Recognition System
Lawmakers advance proposals to let police forces across the EU link their photo databases—which include millions of pictures of people’s faces.

Food Delivery Leak Unmasks Russian Security Agents
The Yandex.Food leak implicates thousands of Russian users, including military personnel.

Facebook Doesn’t Know What It Does With Your Data, Or Where It Goes: Leaked Document
“We do not have an adequate level of control and explainability over how our systems use data,” Facebook engineers say in leaked document.

Police Records Show Women Are Being Stalked With Apple AirTags Across the US
Motherboard obtained reports of stalking, harassment, and abuse using AirTags, targeting victims of intimate partner violence.


Meryl Alper on 'Craptions', Assistive Technologies, and the Real Meaning of Accessible Technology
Histories of technological invention by disabled communities, the backlash against poor algorithmically transcribed captions or ‘craptions’, what it actually means for a place or a technology to be accessible to disabled communities with additional socio-economic constraints.

Something more human

Circus Person
I’m really into the TV-series Severance. So when researching some of the actors that were new to me, I discovered this beautiful short film that just came out: “a a story about radical self-love and facing heartbreak with wild abandon”. Written, directed and produced by Britt Lower. And free.

On Phrenology 2.0

i'm tired of the AI papers that are always like "we made a system that can tell if you're gay, if you're cute, if you believe in god, if you're trustworthy, if you're memorable... uh UHHH but we're doing it to <shuffles papers, looks around> to... um... to STOP discrimination :)"
Ali Alkhatib

Email coaching?

3 questions about coaching via email
Would you be interested in email coaching? Help me understand if this is something I could offer to provide affordable coaching to more people. Thank you!

Svenska / In Swedish

Elementen inom Digital Etik
Ett diagram som belyser 32 områden för moraliska överväganden inom digital utveckling. NU PÅ SVENSKA!

Undervisning inom digital design och utveckling: Digital etik
Om att anlita mig som utbildare. En sida som beskriver vad det egentligen är jag håller utbildningar i.

Digital drivkraft med Per Axbom
Ny sida som beskriver hur du kan anlita mig på ett flexibelt sätt. Anlita Per Axbom 1,2 eller 3 dagar i månaden över ett år. Få tillgång till expertis inom design, coaching, facilitering, kommunikation, utbildning, tidsbesparande verktyg med mera.

Coachning av team inom design och utveckling
Ny sida som beskriver mitt coachnings-erbjudande för team. Skräddarsydda upplägg för team om cirka en dag i månaden under sex månader. För bästa effekt kompletteras gruppcoachning med individuella samtal.

Rapport: Anmälda personuppgiftsincidenter 2021 | IMY
IMY arbetar för att skydda alla dina personuppgifter, till exempel om hälsa och ekonomi, så att de hanteras korrekt och inte hamnar i orätta händer.

Hälsoappar ska bli säkrare – ny standard har tagits fram
Idag finns det cirka 400 000 hälsoappar på marknaden, där många utlovar ett hälsosammare och friskare liv. Medicinska appar måste CE-märkas, men för hälsoappar finns inga sådana krav.

Varför är inte fler upprörda över Bank-id?
Föreställ er ett börsnoterat bolag, låt oss kalla det Svenska Pass AB, med exklusiv rätt att utfärda id-handlingar för utlandsresor. Som kan neka vilken kund de vill. Det är ett upplägg som om möjligt hade utlöst ännu fler mentala härdsmältor än passpolisens just nu riksbekanta haveri.

Jonas Söderström: Vårt ändlösa scrollande lär oss slösa med energi
De enda som tjänar på att vi förbrukar mer och mer data är big tech.

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