In today’s ever-changing world, it’s easy to lose track of the important stuff, like the fact that international events are threatening to plunge us into disaster. It’s also hard to keep up with all the other online ephemera out there. That’s why, every week, we round up stories that happened on our beloved Internet to share with you all. Think of it as a catch-up on what’s (not) really important from the last seven days.

But Does Trump Miss the Old Kanye?

What Happened: It’s the team-up that everyone was waiting for, even if they didn’t know it: Kanye West and Donald Trump.
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: If, as has been suggested, President-elect Donald Trump is a master of distraction, using Twitter and stunts to draw attention away from potential problems, then this last week would have been a smart time to use that ability. Reports that the CIA believes Russia was purposefully attempting to influence last month’s election in favor of Trump wouldn’t stop circulating, prompting rumors of a bipartisan investigation. The media wouldn’t stop talking about it. How could Trump possibly change the subject?

That’ll do it. The media took the bait, running many stories about the unexpected meeting, buoyed by a wonderfully surly, surreal post-meeting photo-op:

Of course, Twitter was ready to offer some commentary as well:

The meeting was such big news, in fact, that it brought Kanye back to Twitter to explain just what he was up to.

Wait. “#2024”? Whatever happened to the 2020 presidential bid he announced at the VMAs last year? Clearly, whatever happened at the meeting with Trump was enough to convince him to hold off for a further 4 years, presumably in order to allow Trump the chance to serve an eight-year term. But what could Trump have given him in return for Kanye promising to hold his fire?

Well, that explains everything.
The Takeaway: Oh, what a strange, “wonderful” year it’s been.

Shaken, Stirred, Sunken

What Happened: The world turned on one of the Trump’s restaurants, and all because of poor service and offerings. What are things coming to?!
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: Continuing with the Trump news, this was a week in which the soon-to-be 45th President of the United States finally concentrated on the important stuff: subtweeting a magazine that published a bad review of Trump Grill.

Tina Nguyen’s Trump Grill piece is a great, funny read that contains such moments as this: “As my companions and I contemplated the most painless way to eat our flaccid, gray Szechuan dumplings with their flaccid, gray innards, as a campy version of ‘Jingle Bells’ jackhammered in the background, a giant gold box tied with red ribbon toppled onto us. Trump, it seemed, was already fighting against the War on Christmas.”

The president-elect, however, was not amused:

That was just the start of a Twitter rant that drew much attention from the media. But things were about to get worse… kind of. And it’s all because of the combination of one drink and two tweets.

Political journalist Olivia Nuzzi, who covers the Trump beat for the Daily Beast went to Trump Grill for herself, and shared the experience on Twitter:

If you’re thinking, “That drink doesn’t look right,” then you weren’t alone.

This is what happens when you draw even more attention to your sad restaurants, Mr. Trump.
The Takeaway: If only there was a teachable moment to be found here.

What Happened: You know what sucks? Trying to express complex thoughts on a platform designed to limit conversation to easily… (1/542)
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: Remember when everyone loved comic book artist Jim Steranko’s multiple-tweet stories about the good old days? Oh, that seems so long ago now. Although multi-tweet threads have become de rigueur in recent months, that might be about to change…

“Manthreading?” you ask. “What’s that?” Well, Alana Hope Levinson took to Gizmodo to explain the thing that she claimed was “one of the many things ruining my Twitter experience.”

She explained: “Threading happens when someone has a lot of thoughts or feelings on a particular topic, so many that they can’t fit them all into 140 characters. So, ostensibly to help readers follow along on their train of thought, they thread the tweets together by replying to themselves. Sometimes they even use numbers!” And the “Man-” prefix comes from the fact that such threads are, in Levinson’s words, “typically ‘intellectual’ dribblings from men who love Explaining Things To Me (essentially a subtype of Online Mansplaining). These are people who want their ideas to take up the absolute most space possible. Like Manspreading, but of digital space.”

It was a theory that some people were ready to agree with wholeheartedly.

Although said supporters need to work out how many tweets are permissible before having to head to blog posts. Two? Five? (Two really does seem a very low threshold. 140 characters isn’t a lot of characters! Some thoughts take more than 280 characters, in fact!)

However, not everyone was onboard:

The term particularly concerned those who are familiar with the purpose threads can serve on Twitter:

But look at this: “manthreading” was already an entirely different thing, although we’re not quite convinced by the definition that describes the term as being “popularized on Twitter in 1890.” Everyone knows Twitter wasn’t invented until the First World War. Look, here’s the term being coined back in November 2015:

(And here it is being coined even earlier, for something else entirely, two years earlier.)

The Takeaway: Of course, manthreading might be the start of a whole new thing.

Guys, It’s Time For Some Meme Theory

What Happened: What makes an instant meme? Start with an already popular subject, add a touch of condescension and just a whiff of over-familiarity.
Where It Blew Up: Twitter
What Really Happened: The (man)thread that launched that revolution against manthreads was a much-shared tirade about current political realities that began with this simple tweet:

That was the start of a thread that ran more than 120 tweets (yes, really) that tied itself in a number of knots while trying to explain how we got where we currently are, vis-à-vis Russia and the US election. In addition to inspiring disdain about Twitter threads, it turned out that that first tweet also became a meme in its own right:

What was it that made the tweet so immediately meme-able? There’s so much to choose from. Eric Garland—self-described “futurist, strategist, author, bassist”—manages at once to appear over-eager, over-familiar, condescending, and just a little bit needy. It’s a perfect storm of a tweet, really, made all the more wonderful because we’re not entirely convinced his tweet thread actually gets into Game Theory as such.
The Takeaway: Guys, let’s really talk about game theory.

Go Back to Top. Skip To: Start of Article.



Source link

NO COMMENTS

LEAVE A REPLY