Link About It: This Week’s Picks

An open call for protest posters, the future of digital therapy, awesome animation, and more from around the web

Printed Matter’s Call for Printable Protest Works

Beloved NYC organization Printed Matter has announced an “open call for free pdfs of anti-racist posters, pamphlets, signs, flyers, organizing material, handouts and zines that provide information about the ongoing fight for racial equality and the movement to protect Black lives.” While plenty of artists have debuted posters and prints available for download from various hosting platforms, Printed Matter aims to create the internet’s largest hub of printed protest messaging. Submissions are welcome starting today but are limited to one color and size option per graphic and one pdf file per submission. Read more, and see the initial offerings, at their site.

Podcasts That Address Pride + Black Lives Matter

Writing for The New York Times, Phoebe Lett says protests—against systemic racism, police violence, discrimination and beyond—during the pandemic “may be perhaps the most genuine honoring of Pride, an annual commemoration of the 1969 Stonewall uprising, in which black and brown LGBTQ people were a driving force.” Through these protests, there’s plenty to learn—especially for those outside the community. As such, Lett rounded up five intersectional podcasts that address both Pride and the Black Lives Matter movement. Her list includes WNYC’s defunct Nancy, an in-depth series reported from the queer perspective; an audio-drama called Caravan that likens itself to the queer version of Buffy or Charmed; and others. Read more at The New York Times.

Understanding The History and Significance of Juneteenth

Juneteenth’s formalization as a federal holiday is long overdue. 19 June 1865 marked two months after the Confederacy’s surrendering, effectively enacting the Emancipation Proclamation in Texas (though it had been law for two years), and thus freeing the slaves there. Nearly 100 years later, in 1980, Texas adopted the day as a state holiday, but many call it “merely symbolic.” Since, 40+ states have moved to recognize the day—with New York’s mayor declaring 19 June a public holiday for state employees. But the day means different things to different people. For many Black individuals, it’s a day of celebration—with parties, parades and city-wide events focused on Black joy, resistance and resilience. For white people, it’s about acknowledging and learning about the USA’s dark history, and reflecting on the ways that history continues to affect the country today. Mark Anthony Neal (African-American studies scholar at Duke University) tells Derrick Bryson Taylor, this year’s Juneteenth is especially poignant, “The stakes are a little different. Many African-Africans, Black Americans, feels as though this is the first time in a long time that they have been heard in a way across the culture.” Read more at The New York Times.

Myungsik Jang’s Gelatinous Animated Characters

Seoul-based multi-talented creative Myungsik Jang develops animated characters that exist somewhere between the sweet, strange and surreal. These creations (oftentimes appearing as a kind of anthropomorphic jelly) are animated digitally, though their personalities and textures are somehow tangible—all slimy, shiny, gelatinous dancing characters. Influenced by comics, Jang “relates to the characters with the ability to shapeshift,” and tells Jyni Ong for It’s Nice That, “I’ve had a lot of desires to be something or someone else… My characters realize my small desires in the magical world.” Take a look at the joyful animations and learn more at It’s Nice That.

Brightline’s Digital Therapy Platform for Children

Launching for kids in the San Francisco Bay Area, the platform Brightline connects children with “psychiatrists, therapists, and coaches who can provide one-on-one tele-therapy,” Fast Company explains. Their efforts are to manage the stress and trauma from changes to school, in the home and socially. During the pandemic, the tech company is waiving its monthly fee so that parents only pay the healthcare professionals—a move that makes therapy, a luxury, more accessible. Right now, sessions are available for children ages six to 10—with expansion coming soon. Read more about the organization, its future in-person locations and their mission at Fast Company.

How to Assemble a Night Sky on Your Ceiling

There are “170 billion galaxies, spanning 45.7 billion light years,” and “roughly a septillion stars in the observable universe.” While few venture out there, many more of us can enjoy the splendor of the night sky from porches, backyards, mountaintops or—as an article from The New York Times suggests—even your bedroom. Their helpful guide explains how to cast the night sky onto your ceiling. Resources from NASA and provide guides to mapping out the stars and galaxy projectors (of varying prices) offer various ways to present them. Further, there are stencils, paint supplies, augmented reality and academic apps, and plenty of books set among the stars to indulge in. Read more at The New York Times.

48,000-Year-Old Discovery in Sri Lanka Could Change History

Uncovered in and near Sri Lanka’s rainforest cave Fa-Hien Lena, hundreds of arrowheads crafted from animal bones are believed to date back 48,000 years—possibly making them the oldest evidence of bow-and-arrow hunting outside Africa. The earliest instances exist in South Africa (64,000 years ago) and the next oldest was believed to date back 32,000 years in Southeast Asia. Being made from bone means the arrowheads were probably used for hunting primates, and analysis revealed “cracks and damage consistent with use as high-speed projectiles.” While much remains to be confirmed, this discovery will undoubtedly teach us more about the collective history of human beings on this planet. Read more at Smithsonian Magazine.

An All-Sky X-Ray Image of the Universe

Made by the German-Russian eRosita telescope (which is currently mounted on the orbiting Spektr-RG space observatory), this remarkable image—completed last week—is an x-ray map of the universe. The scan was taken approximately 930,000 million miles from Earth’s surface, and “will revolutionize x-ray astronomy,” says Kirpal Nandra of the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics. The electrifying image records “violent action in the cosmos” which appear as bright colors. In order to better understand the picture: “blues represent higher energy x-rays (1-2.3 kiloelectron volts, keV); greens are mid-range (0.6-1 keV); and reds are lower energy (0.3-0.6 keV).” Dust, gas, black holes, the remnants of exploded stars—the image depicts a huge amount of wild action happening light years away from this planet. The eRosita is set to collect seven more “all-sky surveys” during the next three years. Read more at the BBC.

Link About It is our filtered look at the web, shared daily in Link and on social media, and rounded up every Saturday morning.