- you open a tab on JSTOR to begin research for a paper. you leave momentarily for a cup of tea; when you return, there are two more tabs that you do not remember opening. you look away to find your notes, and when you look back, there are five more tabs. eventually, there are thirty tags open in your browser. you can no longer access any site other than JSTOR. somehow, this does not seem strange to you.
- an article pops up in your search that, while interesting, does not seem to relate much to your research topic. still, you read it anyway out of curiosity. it cites several other articles that are also on JSTOR, and you decide to read them too. each article brings several others with it. suddenly you are an academic theseus, winding your way through the labyrinth of citations, but you have forgotten the thread that should have led you safely back. it is two in the morning and you are reading about foraging behaviors in south american flamingo. you are a shakespearean scholar. your eyes cry out for sleep, but you cannot stop reading.
- you are scrolling through the pages of articles to find what you need. eventually you notice that you have seen several of these article titles before. confused, you click to the next page of articles and scroll more slowly. it is exactly the same as the last page. another attempt yields the same result. no matter how far you go, you make no progress and find no new articles. you keep scrolling.
- you have been reading so long that you find you can no longer form a sentence without using “nevertheless,” “reminiscent,” or “quintessential.” you also find yourself occasionally slipping between popular academic languages. it has finally happened: you have become academia. your friends and family can no longer understand you, but you can at least read all of the literature in your field. you figure it is a fair trade.
- you pull up JSTOR to search for an article, but before you can type in your search, JSTOR pulls up exactly what you need. you are wary, but you try to read the article. JSTOR flips to the page that contains the exact information you needed for your argument. alarmed, you realize with horror what is going on. you are no longer reading on JSTOR. JSTOR is reading you.
Oh my God
holy mother of god