I’m back this week with more links for you to peruse at your leisure. After the jump, I’ve got pieces on Model UN, GMail, and screenwriting, among others.

  • Following the Phil Fish blow-up that resulted in the cancellation of Fez II, there’s been a lot of talk about the toxicity of discourse in online gaming communities. But sometimes it’s nice to be reminded of the positive side of gamer communities too, as Keith Stuart does in this piece for The Guardian.
  • Remember how in high school, Model UN was just the odd thing that a couple of nerdy kids did instead of going outside? Well, college Model UN is different, and it’s gotten hella weird. Anjli Parrin of the New York Times investigates.
  • Recently, GMail introduced inbox tabs that automatically sort e-mail into Primary, Social, and Promotion categories. Already, companies who sent commercial e-mail are panicking at having their e-mails relegated to the “Promotions” tab. John Herrman of Buzzfeed explains that things aren’t looking good for e-mail marketers. As for what I think, the change takes some getting used to, but I think I like the new inbox tabs.
  • A new smartphone app for couples called Kahnoodle is making waves. Basically, it gamifies relationships by allowing partners to fill up “love tanks” when they do things for each other. Some people see it as a cute way to reinvigorate relationships. Others say that it promotes a harmful “tit-for-tat” mentality in relationships. Susie Nelson of The Atlantic examines the debate. As usual, my opinion on matters such as these is: “Whatever works for you, brah.”
  • Have you wondered why summer blockbusters have gotten so huge and why their stories feature such ridiculous stakes? In a remarkably candid interview with Scott Brown of Vulture, screenwriter Damon Lindelof explains why “story gravity” and Hollywood execs push blockbusters to be as big as they can possibly be.

Speaking of summer blockbusters, the only one I’ve seen this summer is Pacific Rim, and though it was pretty shallow, it was a lot of fun. I highly recommend it. (I’ve also seen Despicable Me 2, which I don’t recommend.)

Come back next Sunday for more linky goodness. Or come back earlier and you might be able to read something else I’ve written, like the next installment of my Chicago Code rewatch.

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