You’ll notice this week that a few of the items below have credits attached to them in the form of “(h/t so-and so).” “H/t” is internet-speak for “hat tip” – an acknowledgment of a tip that somebody sent you. Ever since Around the Horn has been, well, around for a while, people have been taking it upon themselves to email me cool articles or blog posts they’ve seen that might fit into the weekly roundup. Would you like to join them? Now you can easily, even if you’ve never met or spoken to me before. Just enter the info on this Google spreadsheet, add your name if you’d like credit, and I’ll be sure to take a look. Ain’t the internets grand?

  • A couple weeks back, I criticized eighth blackbird for the abnormally high entry fee the ensemble elected to impose on its new composition competition. So it’s only right that I report that the ensemble, to its immense credit, has decided to retool the contest and will refund the fees of anyone who already submitted their work. Nice job guys – and for the composers out there, this goes to show that making your voice heard does work.
  • While I’m in mea culpa mode, last week’s Around the Horn linked to an OKTrends piece on black women’s lack of success on the dating website 99 Seats makes the important point, though, that this site is not where most black singles look for love online (much as many observant Jews would be on J-Date instead). I’m not sure it necessarily invalidates the research, but it’s an important factor to keep in mind.
  • My recent columns on economics have provoked a lot of interesting discussion, both in the comments to my own posts and elsewhere. I was pleased to see that a stranger known by the moniker “econgirl” took notice of my first screed and added her own not-entirely-disagreeing perspective. She does point out that economists overwhelmingly vote Democratic, which I guess scores one in favor of Michael Rushton’s case that the free-market extremists are but a vocal minority.
  • Don’t miss this cool new Fractured Atlas real-time membership map (I wish I could take credit for this, but alas I cannot). And if you’re reading this from North Dakota, get your free membership on the boss’s dime!
  • The NEA has a new theater program director, and here’s an interview with him.
  • If last week’s creative community-building talk didn’t tire you out, there’s another creative cities conference fast on the approach. This one is next month in Lexington, KY and features a keynote from Richard Florida. And speaking of places like Kentucky, Scott Walters finally has the new CRADLE website up. (Thanks for the shout-out!)
  • As for Florida, he’s out with a new paper on happiness and the creative class. He and his co-authors find that “post-industrial structures and values have a stronger effect on happiness in higher-income countries where the standard of living has surpassed a certain level. Income, on the other hand, has a stronger impact on happiness in low-income countries.”
  • One of the things I love about Andrew Taylor is that he always finds great stuff to blog about. Here he points us to an emerging “indie” video game movement in an industry that apparently faces many of the same challenges we see in other content-generation businesses. More proof (if you still needed it) that video games are part of our family.
  • While we’re cruising the ArtsJournal blogs, James Undercofler attempts to decode the L3C and suggests a couple of applications in the arts. Gary Steuer asks why not give grants to businesses, anyway? And I’m trying to decode the extent to which this is a new business model for the performing arts or just a performing arts model mapped onto a visual arts context:

    In the past, performance artists have often sold photographic or video documentation of performances, say, or props and other artifacts left over after the events. But Mr. Sehgal is believed to be the first to have sold the rights to the performance itself; MoMA, for one, recently spent a reported $70,000 for an edition of “Kiss” (2004), a living sculpture that was on loan to the Guggenheim for the recent show and that requires its performers to stay locked for hours in a continuous, balletic embrace.

  • The GiveWell team has really been on a roll lately. Founder Holden Karnofsky made it over to Africa for some site visits to their recommended charities, and documented his trip with as much photo, audio and video as possible. Enjoy part 1, part 2, and part 3 of this series. Meanwhile, Holden says there’s nothing wrong with “selfish” or non-strategic giving – just don’t call it philanthropy (or let it be a substitute).
  • Speaking of strategic giving, remember Philanthropedia? The expert-crowdsourcing organization is looking for advice on supporting arts and culture in the Bay Area. (h/t Sean Stannard-Stockton)
  • This year’s PopTech Social Innovation Fellows Program is open to nominations for “visionary change agents who are incubating high-potential solutions to pressing national, regional and global challenges” in a variety of fields, including the arts.
  • For anyone interested in the final stats on last year’s state arts funding tangles, here they are.
  • Could someone get these guys to NYC pronto?
  • Fun with Google Maps, of a sort.
  • And in Texas, the self-exile of conservatives onto another plane of reality continues.
  • Umm, car dancing video? Yes please! (h/t Kira Campo)
  • Hey, Ian-

    As much as I do like a good tip o’ the hat, I’d be a jerk if I didn’t note that it was Ta-Nehisi Coates who made the observation about the dating fortunes of black women on majority-white sites. I don’t think I’d be able to sleep well passing off his brain as mine.