trying to conduct global maritime trade, but I’m dummy thicc
Read to the end for a real good use of TikTok's duet feature
First, the Garbage Day shirts are officially at the printer. Thanks for those of you who bought one! It was a super fun experiment and I definitely think I’ll do it again soon.
Secondly, my podcast co-host Luke and I have spent the last few months working on a project to prepare for the release of the Snyder Cut. Our DCEU marathon podcast is now unlocked on Patreon if you want to listen to it. And you can listen to our big Snyder Cut episode here.
And, lastly, I really need to plug my interview yesterday Ryan North again. It was a fantastic conversation and I think if you’re someone who Thinks About The State Of The Internet, you absolutely need to check it out. If you aren’t subscribed, hit the button below!
Boat Still Stuck
My Tumblr dashboard is so absolutely overloaded with Suez Canal memes right now that it’s actually becoming hard to navigate the app. So here’s a small list of links to boat memes if you’d like to see some:
Alright, that’s probably enough for now lol. If this boat stays stuck over the weekend, Tumblr’s servers may literally catch fire.
Also, there’s a ton of fan fiction about the boat now. The Ever Given and Suez Canal tags on Archive Of Our Own are bumping right now. This one, titled, “Sweet Suez” literally ships (lol) the boat with the canal.
And, yes, I have found lewd anime fan art of the boat, as well (NSFWish).
A Good Tweet About How Names Work
Where’s YouTube Headed?
My buddy Luke showed me this YouTube channel this week. The videos are created by a worker at Subway and they’re all the same thing — top down footage of his hands making a sandwich while he tells stories. The channel is funny and interesting and I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before the channel’s popularity turns into a PR crisis for Subway. He currently has close to a million subscribers and his videos get hundreds of thousands of views. What’s most interesting, to me, is how short they are. His longest videos are around two-and-a-half minutes like, while most of them average about 20 seconds. This shouldn’t be possible.
I first wrote about the appearance of short viral YouTube videos back in December. For years, the platform has made it extremely difficult to get any views on videos that are under 10 minutes long. It now seems likely that the diminishing lengths of popular YouTube videos is linked to the release of YouTube Shorts, the app’s TikTok killer.
But that’s not the only change happening within YouTube right now. The site is hiring a “Strategic Partner Manager for Civic Content Partnerships,” which will “drive adoption of YouTube with US government and political entities on the conservative side of the aisle.” It has, also, released specific “Gaming and Monetization” guidelines, which outline specific things that gamers should do around advertising. These include specific rules about how saying the N-word in a video will impact ad revenue, as well as content about 9/11. Normal video game stuff. Also, worth noting, YouTube’s CEO Susan Wojcicki has continued to not show up to congressional hearings, this week’s included.
YouTube, and Google at large, are notorious for not being particularly coordinated in how they roll out products (Google Wave says “hi”), but if I had to guess, I’m thinking YouTube knows what kind of floodgate is about to open with their short video product. Whether it’s ISIS or white nationalism, YouTube is the premiere radicalization engine online. But a side effect of YouTube requiring longer video content was the barrier of entry for a YouTube video was a bit higher than making a one-minute TikTok. Once that hurdle’s gone, what do you think the site’s already-very-radicalized user base is going to start publishing? And, more unsettling, how viral do you think these videos will go?
I Am Obsessed With This Dude’s TikTok Channel
B. Dylan Hollis is a TikToker who is getting really popular right now. I love his whole schtick. He takes very old and very gross recipes from the early 20th century and makes them. He has this whole funny kind of pithy greaser vibe to him — like if John Mulaney was having a nervous breakdown while time traveling. It’s even better, though, when the recipes cause him to break character. My favorite video of his is the chocolate potato cake.
Once you’ve watched that, head over to Tumblr where a user tried to make the cake.
“This stupid cake, made with potatoes ... is delicious,” Tumblr user kirain said. “It's so sweet, moist, and decadent, just like a brownie! And I don't even like chocolate or potatoes!”
An Interesting Question About Ghosts
Hmm! This is something I had never considered before I saw a screenshot of it going around Twitter this week. I went over to the original post, which was published on the r/GhostHunting subreddit. Let’s take a look at some of the responses:
“This sounds unethical to me :/”
“That's pretty smart. It hadn't occurred to me, but Yeh a baby is basically a ghost magnet.”
“But if this worked wouldn't schools be overrun with ghosts?”
Three very interesting angles on this!
Let’s Gamify Good Humaning
I saw this video on Twitter this week and it is one of the more unsettlingly dystopian things I’ve seen in a while. It describes itself as an app where “an ice bucket challenge or an Earth hour was happening every single day.” It then goes on to say that this app will “gamify good humaning.” A chill just ran down my spine.
The app is called Good Empire and I was morbidly curious to see what this thing was all about. It’s still crowdfunding investment, but the app’s website gives a rundown of how it will work. You pick a challenge, such as, “not using any petrol this week” and then you make a TikTok-like video of you doing the challenge and then you tag friends to challenge them, as well. Good Empire was created by Australian entrepreneur André Eikmeier, who created an online wine platform called Vinemofo and now runs the “transformation agency Cult Tribal” which helps “companies build culture-led brands and unite their own tribes by doing things right.”
It could be because I’m currently watching Adam Curtis’ newest documentary, Can’t Get You Out Of My Head, but all of this is sending me into an unspeakable rage. The idea of a guy who helps companies put on woke face paint building a proprietary online platform to pressure random people into performatively engaging in eco-challenges, like not using straws for a month or whatever, is literally turning me into the Joker.
It Was Bone Bone’s Birthday This Week
This is Bone Bone. He’s an incredibly round cat from Thailand with half a million followers on Instagram that sometimes wears a backpack. He celebrated his 10th birthday this week. Congratulations, Bone Bone, I love you.
Can You Mint Unsolicited Dick Pics Into NFTs?
OK, so, to understand this, you’re unfortunately going to have to understand a little bit about how the blockchain works. If I can explain NFTs to my mom using crude drawings on a napkin, I can probably explain this to you, as well.
Reddit user u/Smemseg posited the following question to the other members of r/CryptoCurrency this week. “Let's say you receive an unwanted and poorly composed shot of someone's junk (I'll also assume you're a lady, since they get the vast majority of them),” they said. “Don't delete that thing - mint it as an NFT and credit the sender as the original artist. Then, send them an invite to buy their art and remove it from the blockchain. If they don't, their name and nads will exist forever more in the very public blockchain, for all to see.”
As one commenter wrote, “I think you just invented revenge porn.” Variations of this idea, though, are everywhere. Here’s how it would work.
If you received an unsolicited dick pic, you could go to an NFT platform, pay the minting price, upload the dick pic, and then mint it. What you have then done is made a permanent record on the blockchain ledger of that dick pic. If the dick pic sender were to buy the photo of his own junk, he could remove the image, but, as I understand it, you cannot remove the record of it being minted. So basically, if you NFT’d a dick pic, it wouldn’t be impossible to remove, but it would be a huge pain the ass. Input Mag has a great interview with Zoe Scaman, a creative strategist, who created a site that will help you mint dick pics as NFTs.
I need to point out, though, in all seriousness, that NFT revenge porn is already happening and it’s a problem. Mintable, a really popular NFT platform, had some being auctioned for over $50,000 earlier this month. And, like all things on the internet, this type of thing will probably get much worse before it gets better.
Twitter Users Fall For Jigsaw’s Trick
A Very Funny Brazilian YouTube Video
OK, this is fun. My girlfriend runs a branded content agency in Brazil and they’re starting to do original videos for their YouTube channel. Their first one is super cute. It’s in Portuguese, but I think it’s pretty easy to follow. They made the youngest and most online member on their team live like it was 2005 for a week. Dial up computer, T9-enabled flip phone, an instant messaging client, the results are super funny. There’s a really great scene towards the middle where she has to burn a CD and it does not go well.
Some Real Good Spongebob Content
P.S. here’s a real good use of TikTok's duet feature.
***Any typos in this email are on purpose actually***