Webtacular World Issue # 30, June 29, 2014

I am seriously debating the importance of other news after the drama of the World Cup this weekend, but I’ll give it a shot.

STORY OF THE WEEK (14 min. watch)
What: What I Do For A Living
Why: Because the net neutrality debate has the potential to effect the future of communication development for the foreseeable future.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Safety In Numbers
Why: Because some billionaires are realizing that the current divergence of the haves and the have nots might not be sustainable.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: From Cellphones To Abortions
Why: Because the Supreme Court made a number of important rulings this past week, many of which were unanimous, even when they weren’t.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Greenhouse Gasses Can Be Regulated
Why: Because the infinite wisdom of the Supreme Court actually let the EPA do its job.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. watch)
What: Pelotons Are Crazy
Why: Because after the World Cup ends, this is where my focus will turn to.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: Someone Really Did Not Like Frozen
Why: Because even though the author pushes the argument a little too far, she does make some strong points as to the films shortcomings in its feminist message.

TV THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: The Beginning Of Adult Swim
Why: Because Space Ghost redefined the absurdity of what a cartoon could be.

COMEDY THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: Always Look On The Bright Side Of Life
Why: Because I wish I had bought tickets to one of their shows.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. watch)
What: How To Write A Song
Why: Because now you can be as famous as Rebecca Black.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The Right Lens
Why: Because you might as well know the best way to use that DLSR that’s sitting in your closet.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (5. min. read)
What: How To Write At 200 WPM
Why: Because this would have been super useful to know in law school.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK
What: Final Hours Of The Steam Sale
Why: Because even if you have a terrible computer, there are some really cheap deals for some really good games.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK
What: Karate Is Bullshit; Omniscient Narrators Don’t Always Have Your Best Interest In Mind; Fake Estate; Kids Vs. Pros; So Dildos Aren’t Toys?; I Dare You
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Monty Python Tickets In SF
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 29, June 22, 2014

The World Cup has been dominating my personal life for them moment. Today’s draw was heartbreakingly spectacular. I love the beautiful game. On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (2 min. watch)
What: Tie Of All Ties
Why: Because I BELIEVE THAT WE WILL WIN.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Surprise, Surprise, We Pay Too Much
Why: Because our costs are almost double the that of other similarly economically situated countries, and receive little recourse for it – maybe it’s because pharmaceutical companies are all using $8.00 ice cubes in their diamond encrusted glasses.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Yes, Your Football Team’s Name Is Offensive, And No, You Cannot Own Rights The To It.
Why: Because the name is basically as offensive as this on point (and terribly offensive) piece of satire.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. watch)
What: Stephen Hawking Is People Who Think Good
Why: Because Stephen Hawking has given fewer and fewer interviews as of late, and this one remains both touching and hilarious.

PRIVACY THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: How Spies Spy
Why: Because it’s a good thing to know what agencies are actually capable of doing with all the data they are collecting.

FOOD THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: If You Hate Gluten, Looks Like You’ll Continue To Be Happy
Why: Because gluten free is a terrible fad that deserves to die, and it looks like it’s not going to. For the rest of us normal people, there’s this.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (7 min. read)
What: World Cup Analysis
Why: Because this delivers a very good breakdown of every team and game.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (80 min. watch)
What: All You Ever Wanted To Know About Wes Anderson And More
Why: Because even though there is almost certainly a bias towards Wes Anderson movies in Webtacular World, I still think he is one of the most creative directors of this generation. This is also important.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. watch)
What: Yet Another One Of The Best Music Videos
Why: Because OK Go continues to prove that internet did not kill the video star, they just started making way better videos.

PHOTOGRAPHY THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. watch)
What: How To Take Pictures
Why: Because you might as well finally learn how to use that awesome camera you have sitting in your closet well.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. watch)
What: World 1-1
Why: Because I bet you didn’t realize how much you learned within the first 30 seconds of playing the most famous Nintendo game. Luckily for you, you will soon be able to design your own.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK
What: More Like WTF Core; Fartzenegger; The Most Newsworthy Of Fonts;
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: The World Cup Trophy
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Webtacular World Issue # 28, June 15, 2014 FATHER’S DAY EDITION

Happy Father’s Day, webtaculators!

Special mention to one particular dad – a confidant, savior, guide, muse, terrible-but-somehow-still-funny comedian, sage, healer… actually, this goes so far beyond what the basic definition of what a father is that someone should probably invent a new word for it, oh wait – got it. Dadtacular. Thanks for being the best Dadtacular I could have. Love you.

On to the news.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Majority Leader No More
Why:Because this is the first time in history where a generally popular politician in a powerful position has lost in the PRIMARY.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (15 min. read)
What: The Value Of Feet
Why: Because the Copa Mundial and the part of the body the players use is worth a lot of money.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (2 min. read)
What: Tesla’s Patents Are Belong To Us
Why: Because not only are Tesla’s patents open for most practical purposes, but we also learned that Elon Musk appreciates decade-old memes from derived from poorly translated Japanese video games.

FOOD THING OF THE WEEK (6 min. read)
What: How Food Works
Why: Because you eat food, so you should know understand how it gets into your mouth.

HEALTH THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. watch)
What: Anderson Cooper Tries Out Schizophrenia
Why: Because this is one of the few diseases that humans can actually replicate, and the thought of having someone yelling at you constantly inside of your head terrifies me.

MILITARY INDUSTRIAL COMPLEX THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: A New Home For War
Why: Because I don’t think that Eisenhower himself realized the future reach of a weaponized public force.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: The World Cup Is In Full Swing
Why: Because anything is better than the Kings winning Lord Stanley’s Cup or the lackluster Heat driving their fans out of the stadium. Viva Futbol!

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (13 min. watch)
What: If Everyone Is Super, Doesn’t That Mean No One Is?
Why:

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. watch)
What: Psy’s Back
Why: Because this time he brought Snoop with him.

ANTI-LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK ()
What: I Hate Clickbait, And You Should Too.
Why: Because it’s rant time.

*BEGIN RANT*

Clickbait has slowly but surely become the scourge of my daily internetting. Open Facebook, and you probably see one of your friends sharing something that includes the word “GENIUS,” “EPIC,” “AMAZING,” or “UNBELIEVABLE” (always in capital letters) claiming that you must read this story or watch this video because it is the best thing that has ever happened. Although webpages have always tried to find ways to draw your eyeballs to their content, with the proliferation of social media, and the growing importance of “shareable” content has led to the rise of Upworthy (with articles such as “This Video Might Hurt To Watch. Luckily, It Might Also Explain Why”), Uproxx (“Important: An Independent Baseball Team Is Wearing Michael Jackson’s ‘Beat It’ Jacket Jerseys”) and the mother of them all, Buzzfeed (22 People Who Forgot To Be People).

Now, I have nothing against the the occasional listicle, or even a title that leads to actually decent information. However, the insistence that everything is absolutely the best must see thing ever produced dilutes from things that you actually should know about or read or watch. In fact, one of the reasons why I created Webtacular World in the first place was because so much good content is not actually making it through the din of blabber (Share if you agree!). Moreover, much of this content is more concerned with people sharing it  or commenting on it than actually reading it, as noted by the very clever April Fools Day NPR Facebook post, which anyone who did not actually read the article would have only seen the title, and therefore commented on how lamentable it was that no one reads (although not so eloquently), thus showing that they themselves were part of the actual problem. An even bigger problem now though, is that in order to compete with views, legitimate news sources such as TIME or Slate are starting to resort to the same sort titles (“Eat Butter: Scientists Labeled Fat The Enemy. They Were Wrong” and “This Is What Happens When Your Foot Falls Asleep”). The problem is that these well researched originally reported articles now don’t differentiate themselves from the other drivel (ironically also a Slate article), and therefore have to compete with that drivel.

However, Webtacular World is not the only entity that has noticed this problem. Many outlets such as Clickbait Dissertations and Factbot have turned to humor to point out the inanity of this subset of titling. XKCD imagined clickbait through history. Most recently The Onion rolled out a new platform, Clickhole, comprised of entirely fake clickbait articles, which hopefully will produce enough nonsense and confusion to drive the practice out of journalism completely. So help out. Next time that friend of yours (definitely not you) posts a clickbait article, don’t share it. Don’t like it Don’t comment “OMG KITTENZ IS BEST” on it. Instead, find a real article with a real title and share that instead. Or just share Webtacular World. Together, with your help, we can end the scourge of clickbait, and use the internet for good.

*END RANT*

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (30 min. watch)
What: Behind The Scenes At E3
Why: Because E3 is the biggest event of the year as far as video games are concerned.

FATHER’S DAY THING OF THE WEEK 1 min. watch)
What: Dad Pants
Why: Because you should just say no to them.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK
What: King Of The North vs. Fly, You Fools; Gooooooooooool; How To Make A Ball; Living With Loss; Allll Byyyy Myself
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Any Of These When They Are Released
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

 

Webtacular World Issue # 27, June 8, 2014

Greetings to the new format Webtaculators! Hope you enjoy.

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: WEBTACULAR WORLD 2.0 Released!
Why: Because you deserve it.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Oh Boy! $28,800 Per Year!
Why: Because that’s how much a person now working for the new Seattle minimum wage of $15 per hour will make by working full time in a year.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: I Am The Law!
Why: Because most public defenders don’t need to defend themselves.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. watch)
What: Houston, Gravity Has Problems
Why: Because one of my favorite movies gets a lot of the science wrong.

TECHNOLOGY THING OF THE WEEK (13 min. watch)
What: Net Neutrality In A Nutshell
Why: Because Webtacular World depends on an open framework to continue to be the worldwide leader in news. (Ed. note: not even close).

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (15 min. read)
What: GOL! GOL! GOL!
Why: Because you’re going to be hearing a lot of that in the upcoming weeks, and you’d better schedule your time accordingly.

NEWS THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: The Colbert Bump Beats The Real Thing
Why: Because this either means Colbert is doing a phenomenal job, or the real news is doing a terrible one.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (45 min.watch)
What: Alphabetized Gets It, Should So Star You Wars Watch
Why: Because someone had way too much time on their hands, and you should appreciate the effort.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (10 min. read)
What: Sex, Top Hats, and Horseless Carriages
Why: Because music was raunchy way before Madonna.

ART THING OF THE WEEK (11 min. watch)
What: Obey Andre
Why: Because Shepard Fairey was one of the first artists to legitimize graffiti.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (20 min. reads)
What: Killing An Elephant, Then And Now
Why: Because sometimes you need to read something heartbreaking.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Tetris Turns 30
Why: Because it remains one of the purest puzzle games to this day.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK ()
What: (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻; Give It All You GoatOne Take Is All The Action You Need; The Best Burrito
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: New Suit
Why: Because Brian finally got a real job.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™

Welcome To Webtacular World Version 2.0!

We here at Webtacular World are very excited to announce Webtacular World 2.0 with the launch webtacularworld.com. After many months of labor and millions of dollars spent on analytics, focus groups, and R&D, the web as you know it just changed forever.*  Webtacular World 2.0 now inlcudes searches, a working archive, and most importantly, differently colored hyperlinks!!!!

With our recent update, we here at Webtacular World realize The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™ just became even more unknownier than it previously was; for example, we are certain you did not know that webtacularworld.com even existed before right this moment. At the same time, by letting you know that webtacularworld.com exists, we solved the very same problem of unknownness we created. Just by having read this, you are now at the very forefront of web development – in fact, you are so ahead of the curve that the developers at Apple’s current WWDC 2014 don’t even know about this, which is probably the only time in your life that you can say you are cooler than an Apple developer. In fact, our analysts just relayed that this notice just increased your water cooler cache (WCC) by 143%, which puts you way ahead of anyone.** We here at Webtacular World suggest you relish in your superiority.

Regardless of our (non)analysis, we here at Webtacular World are so certain that you will enjoy the new format, we have a 100% satisfaction guarantee.*** So kick back, relax, and enjoy Webtacular World 2.0 and webtacularworld.com in all of its HTML5 glory. You deserve it.

*Ok. Fine. More like a few hours and $18.00. You get the idea.

** Damn it, stop being so literal. You’re right. WCC is not an actual data point that anyone measures, nor one which our analysts spent any time analyzing.

***We would feel obligated to say “or your money back” at this point, but considering no one paid us in the first place, it’s a moot point.

Webtacular World Issue #26, June 1, 2014

STORY OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Snowden Speaks
Why: Because even though the jury is still out on whether Snowden is a traitor or a hero, he has undeniably changed the conversation on privacy and the war on terrorism.

ECONOMIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Racism Pays
Why: Because even though the Sterlings were forced to sell, this still seems like a poor incentive to change people’s behaviors.

POLITICAL THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Cutting Carbon
Why: Because even though this is only a small step to curtailing the dangers of climate change, it is a step in the right direction.

LAW THING OF THE WEEK (5 min. read)
What: A Lower High
Why: Even though marijuana was legalized earlier this year, there are still many bumps that need to be smoothed out.

SCIENCE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: The Future Is Here
Why: Because this will revolutionize the way humans and transportation will interact, even if it looks a little silly.

SPORTS THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: Corruption In Qatar
Why: Because FIFA has had many allegations of corruption before, but this has the potential to effect billions of dollars of potential development.

MOVIE THING OF THE WEEK (8 min. watch)
What: Visual Comedy Done Wright
Why: Because comedy deserves more than two people saying funny things to each other.

MUSIC THING OF THE WEEK (4 min. read)
What: How To Write A Hit
Why: Because sometimes even the best get stuck.

LITERATURE THING OF THE WEEK (3 min. read)
What: Take A Look, It’s In A Book
Why: Because Reading Rainbow was a magical part of my childhood, and I’m glad that the program will be able to influence future generations.

VIDEO GAME THING OF THE WEEK (7 min. read)
What:Some People REALLY Like Video Games
Why: Because sometimes you can let a passion project take over your life, and not always for the best.

INTERNET THINGS OF THE WEEK
What: Life Is Hard In The Suburbs; Speling Is Hardder Then It Shuld Bee; 50 Cent For Your Thoughts; Harry As Galt
Why: Because Internet.

THING YOU SHOULD GET BRIAN OF THE WEEK
What: Fly Me To The Moon
Why: Because Brian deserves it.

Webtacularly yours,
Brian
Managing Editor, Webtacular World
The Internet You Didn’t Know You Needed™