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New entries added to the Internet Meme Database

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  • 01/07/14--09:57: Cicada 3301
  • Overview

    Cicada 3301 is an annual online scavenger hunt in which the participant is asked to complete a series of complex and interconnected puzzles using various clues embedded in multimedia files. Purportedly designed to recruit “intelligent individuals” and heavily focused on data security, cryptography, and steganography, the mysterious puzzle-solving challenge has garnered considerable attention on the web since its launch in January 2012.


    On January 4th, 2012, an image of a text-based puzzle was posted to 4chan’s /b/ (random) and /x/ (paranormal) boards, which challenged the readers to find a hidden message in the file.

    The mysterious post was quickly met by various speculations and theories surrounding its true intent, with some simply interpreting the message as yet another alternate reality game (ARG), while others suspected that it was a recruitment program for the United States intelligence community.

    Notable Developments


    The first clue in the puzzle was retrieved by opening the image file in a text-editing application, which revealed the following message encoded as a Caesar Cipher:

    TIBERIVSCLAVDIVSCAESAR says “lxxt>33m2mqkyv2gsq3q=w]O2ntk”

    Upon decryption, the text revealed a URL address to an image of a wooden duck accompanied by another cryptic message (shown below). The image was then processed through OutGuess, a steganography program for hiding and finding messages within images, which led to additional clues.

    Although it remains unclear how many participants completed the puzzle, at least one San Francisco-based self-taught programmer by the handle “Tekk.nolagi” is believed to have solved it, according to the WNYC.

    Search Interest

    External References

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  • 01/07/14--10:46: "Let it Go"
  • About
    Frozen is a 2013 American computer-animated musical fantasy film produced by Walt Disney Animation Studios and released by Walt Disney Pictures. It is the 53rd animated feature in the Walt Disney Animated Classics series. Loosely based on Hans Christian Andersen’s fairy tale The Snow Queen, and featuring the voices of Kristen Bell, Idina Menzel, Jonathan Groff, Josh Gad, and Santino Fontana; the film tells the story of a fearless princess who sets off on an epic journey alongside a rugged, thrill-seeking mountain man, his loyal pet reindeer, and a hapless snowman to find her estranged sister, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom in eternal winter.[1]

    Frozen was released in theaters on November 27, 2013 in the United States, earning about $296,691,729 in North America, and $342,100,000 in other countries, for a worldwide total of $638,791,729. [1]
    Buzz about the movie quickly spread to Twitter[2], where a flurry of images, gifs, videos and other content flooded the site.

    Let It Go

    “Let It Go” is a song from Disney’s 2013 animated feature film, Frozen, with music and lyrics composed by Kristen Anderson-Lopez and Robert Lopez.[3] The song was performed in the film by American actress and singer Idina Menzel in her role as Queen Elsa. The song appears after an ostracized Elsa abandons her kingdom soon after her cryokinetic powers are discovered by the public. Realizing that she no longer needs to hide her incredibly powerful icy abilities anymore, Elsa declares herself free from the obstacles that she’s been faced with since childhood and rejoices in using her powers without fear.

    Demi Lovato also recorded the song for the film’s soundtrack.

    This song spawned multiple parodies and covers.

    Notable Examples

    Other Frozen Songs

    Actors Brian Rosenthal and Joey Richter from Starkids Productions, the theater group behind “A Very Potter Musical,” posted a lip sync version of “Do You Want to Build a Snowman” in a collection of Vines posted by Corey Lubowich.[4] The Vines were compiled into a Youtube video uploaded on December 11th, 2013.

    Youtube user Jolan Carl Abaquin proposed to his girlfriend using a karaoke version of “Love is an Open Door” on December 24th, 2013.

    External References

    [1]Wikipedia- Frozen
    fn2. Tumblr- Frozen
    fn3. IMDB- Frozen
    fn4. Vine- Corey Lubowich

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    Fukushima Radiation Scare Hoaxes refers fictitious reports about dangerous radiation from the 2011 Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster.


    As early as August 2013, an email message began circulating claiming that radioactive seepage had spread across the Pacific Ocean from the destroyed Fukushima nuclear power plant, accompanied by an image illustrating the trajectory of the radiation (shown below). On August 28th, a page titled “Fukushima Emergency” was created on the hoax debunking site Snopes,[3] which revealed that the image was actually a map of projected tsunami wave heights and not radiation spread.


    On September 3rd, 2013, the satirical news site National Report published an article reporting that Fukushima radiation had killed hundreds of whales, which contained an embedded image of beached whales (shown below). On September 5th, an entry titled “Fukushima Dead Whales Hoax” was submitted to the Hoax debunking website Hoax Slayer,[10] which revealed that the photo was of pilot whales beached on the coast of New Zealand in August of 2010, several months prior to the Fukushima meltdown.

    On October 22nd, 2013, the government conspiracy news blog Activist Post[7] published an article attributing various environmental issues on the United States west coast to the Fukushima disaster. On October 29th, the science blog Southern Fried Science[9] published an article debunking many of the points made in the Activist Post piece. On October 28th, the skeptic news blog Skeptoid[2] published an article about Fukushima radiation rumors, referring to the reports as “scaremongering.” On November 28th, the ocean life blog Deep Sea News[5] published an article debunking several radiation rumors which exposed the radiation spread image to be a map of estimated maximum wave heights. On December 24th, 2013, YouTuber Kill0Your0TV uploaded a video featuring a man using a Geiger Counter at Pacifica State Beach near San Francisco, California, claiming that the Fukushima radiation had hit the United States’ coast (shown below). In the next two weeks, the video gained more than 560,000 views and 1,000 comments.

    On January 6th, 2014, the conspiracy theory blog Infowars[4] highlighted the video in an article questioning if Fukushima radiation had hit the California coastline. On the following day, the news blog PolicyMic[8] published an article about viral Fukushima radiation stories spreading online, criticizing those who have attributing environmental issues to the Fukushima disaster without evidence.

    Search Interest

    External References

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  • 01/07/14--14:36: Bikini Bridge
  • About

    Bikini Bridge is a photo fad featuring photographs of bikini bottoms stretched across protruding hip bones that are typically shot from a top-down point of view (POV) perspective.


    On February 26th, 2009, a Tumblr blog titled “Bikini Bridge” was launched, highlighting top-down POV photographs of women’s stomachs and bikini bottoms (shown below).


    On April 24th, 2009, Urban Dictionary[3] user mormdav submitted an entry for the phrase “bikini bridge,” defining the term as a bikini bottom stretched across protruding hip bones.

    On October 12th, 2010, the /r/bikinibridge[2] subreddit was launched, featuring user-submitted photographs of thin women in bikini bottoms.

    Operation Bikini /b/ridge

    Notable Examples

    Search Interest

    External References

    [1]Tumblr – Bikini Bridge

    [2]Reddit – /r/bikinibridge

    [3]Urban Dictionary – bikini bridge

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  • 01/07/14--11:23: Tutting
  • About

    Tutting is a style of hip hop dance that involves popping one’s hands and arms at perpendicular angles in sync to the beat. The dance can be traced back to the 1970s, but it found increased popularity in late 2013 through “hand tutting” videos on Vine.


    Tutting originated from the choreography of 1970s funk band King Boogaloo Tut and Street Scape. In 2009, tutorials for the dance started popping up on YouTube.[5] While tutting can include moving arms and even extend to the rest of your body, many Vine users creating videos for the dance limit themselves to finger tutting.


    After its introduction in the ‘70s tutting became a staple of hip hop dancing in the 1980s and was re-popularized in the early ’90s by the video from Madonna’s “Vogue.”


    The first Urban Dictionary[1] entry was submitted by user Ike on June 18th, 2006 which defined the dance as when you “change the angles of arms according to the beat.” In June 2011 a French ad for Samsung mobile featured JayFunk[4], a tutter from Los Angeles perform finger tutting. On November 28th, 2010 a video titled “the ART of TUTTING[2] was uploaded on Youtube showing two men practicing the dance with each other. A Buzzfeed article titled ""Tutting" Is A Really Weird And Hypnotic Hand Dance That’s Super Popular On Vine"[3] highlighting the dance and examining its emergence as a trend on Vine was published on December 31st, 2013.

    External References

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  • 01/08/14--10:03: Starbucks Name FAIL
  • About

    Starbucks Name FAIL is a series of photographs documenting misspelled names of customers written on the side of cups at the global coffeehouse chain Starbucks.


    In September 2005, Starbucks enacted a new policy requiring baristas to write the names of customers on the side of their cups.[12] On May 13th, 2010, a Tumblr[1] blog titled “Starbucks Got My Name Wrong” was launched, which highlights photographs of misspelled names written on Starbucks cups (shown below).


    In June 2011, two additional single topic blogs titled Starbucks Screw-ups[2] and Starbucks Spelling[3] were created on Tumblr. On July 6th, Funny or Die[4] published a compilation of notable examples from the Starbucks Spelling Tumblr blog. Throughout 2012, even more blogs and websites documenting Starbucks’ name FAILs continued to emerge on Tumblr, including Starbucks Can’t Spell My Name[5] and That’s Not My Name, Starbucks[6] Tumblr blogs in February, as well as a Facebook[7] page titled “When Starbucks Gets Your Name Wrong” in March, which gathered more than 35,500 likes in the following two years. On June 12th, BuzzFeed[8] highlighted 20 tweets featuring photographs of misspelled names written on Starbucks cups (shown below, left). On September 12th, Redditor industrialove submitted a photograph of a Starbucks cup which misspelled his name “Chad” as “Shat” (shown below) to the /r/funny[10] subreddit. Prior to being archived, the post gained over 9,700 up votes and 290 comments.

    On February 25th, 2013, The Daily Mail[9] published an article featuring several name fail photographs posted on Reddit and Tumblr. On January 6th, 2014, Redditor Gomets51 submitted a post titled “My Name is Ian and I Hate Starbucks” to the /r/funny[11] subreddit, which linked to a photo of a Starbucks cup with the word “Eeyon” written on the side (shown below). Within 24 hours, the post garnered upwards of 10,900 up votes and 1,000 comments.

    Notable Examples

    Search Interest

    Not available.

    External References

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  • 01/08/14--13:27: Conspiracy Theories
  • About.

    A conspiracy theory is an explanatory proposition that accuses two or more people, a group, or an organization of having caused or covered up, through deliberate collusion, an event or phenomenon of great social, political, or economic impact. Despite existing for decades, the conspiracy theories have exploded in popularity since the invention of the internet, where said people could share their toughts on different things. One must not think of the conspiracy theorists as a one-minded congregation, since most people have different oppinions and arguments on different events or subjects.


    The Oxford English Dictionary records the first use of the phrase “conspiracy theory” to a 1909 article in The American Historical Review.Other sources predate this use by nearly four decades to at least 1871, where it is used in The Journal of Mental Science reporting on a conference of the Fifth Quarterly Meeting of the Medico-Psychological Association (now the Royal College of Psychiatrists), held on January 27, 1870:

    “The theory of Dr. Sankey as to the manner in which these injuries to the chest occurred in asylums deserved our careful attention. It was at least more plausible that the conspiracy theory of Mr. Charles Beade…

    Originally a neutral term, since the mid-1960s it has acquired a somewhat derogatory meaning, implying a paranoid tendency to see the influence of some malign covert agency in events. The term is often used to automatically dismiss claims that the critic deems ridiculous, misconceived, paranoid, unfounded, outlandish, or irrational.


    The conspiracy theorist, also known as “truth seekers” have been around for nearly 50 years, since the death of the president John F. Kennedy which, according to some eye witnesess, was carried out by multiple shooters because either: They heard gunshots from more than one direction or, they think that one bullet couldn’t cause that much damage or hit as many targets as it did (A theory called The Magic Bullet). A 2004 Fox News poll found that 66% of Americans thought there had been a conspiracy while 74% thought there had been a cover-up. As recently as 2009, some 76% of people polled for CBS News said they believed the President had been killed as the result of a conspiracy.

    Popular conspiracy theories.

    9/11 was an inside job

    One of the most prominent and biggest conspiracy theories, says that the September the 11th attacks weren’t carried out by Terrorists, the goverment carried out an attack the WTC to have an “excuse” to go to war with the Middle East. And the planes couldn’t cause that much damage to a building like the WTC and was actually destroyed via controlled thermite explosions.


    Created by ex-football player David Icke, this is the belief that most Politicians and celebrities are reptilian shapeshifters, disguised as human beings for various reasons, often while using well-timed photos of TV screens where the disguise “fails” or exposes itself for a second.


    The illuminati and freemasons were actual, real societies. The Illuminati (From “illuminatus” means:enlightened) was an Enlightenment-era secret society founded on May 1, 1776 to oppose superstition, prejudice, religious influence over public life, abuses of state power, and to support women’s education and gender equality. The Illuminati, along with other secret societies, were outlawed by the Bavarian ruler, Charles Theodore, with the encouragement of the Roman Catholic Church, and permanently disbanded in 1785.
    In subsequent use, “Illuminati” refers to various organizations claiming or purported to have unsubstantiated links to the original Bavarian Illuminati or similar secret societies, and often alleged to conspire to control world affairs by masterminding events and planting agents in government and corporations to establish a New World Order and gain further political power and influence.

    Freemasonry is a fraternal organisation that traces its origins to the local fraternities of stonemasons, which from the end of the fourteenth century regulated the qualifications of masons and their interaction with authorities and clients. The degrees of freemasonry, its gradal system, retain the three grades of medieval craft guilds, those of Apprentice, journeyman or fellow (now called Fellowcraft), and Master Mason. These are the degrees offered by craft, or blue lodge Freemasonry. There are additional degrees, which vary with locality and jurisdiction, and are now administered by different bodies than the craft degrees. In fact, as of right now, 14 US presidents were openly Freemasons.

    Of the claims that Freemasonry exerts control over politics, perhaps the best-known example is the New World Order theory, but there are others. These mainly involve aspects and agencies of the United States government, but actual events outside the US (such as the Propaganda Due scandal in Italy) are often used to lend credence to claims.

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  • 01/08/14--13:36: Female Maskers
  • About

    Female Maskers, also known as Living Dolls, are men who wear wigs, women’s clothes and masks of female faces in order to mimic the appearance of dolls.


    The female latex mask hub site Maskon[2] was launched in 1996, which hosts several webpages for female mask sellers.


    On September 28th, 2003, Metafilter[7] user soundofsuburbia posted a link to the Maskon website. On November 4th, 2004, the female mask retail website PhotogenicMask[6] was launched, which includes versions in Japanese, English, Chinese and Taiwanese. On October 6th, 2006, Cross Dressers Forum[5] member whisky12 submitted a thread asking for recommendations for female latex mask sellers. On February 27th, 2007, a group photo page titled “Female mask group” was created on the photo-sharing site Flickr.[3] On June 20th, 2010, the silicone female mask retailer Celesmask[4] launched their official website. On June 29th, the Celesmask YouTube channel was created, featuring videos of the store’s products (shown below).

    On January 18th, 2011, Psychology Today[8] published an article in which clinical psychologist Ray Blanchard characterized the desire to wear female latex masks as a “fetish.” On December 20th, 2013, the British public-service television broadcaster Channel 4 uploaded a clip from an episode of the documentary “Secrets of the Living Dolls” (shown below), in which a man describes his experience of cross dressing and wearing female masks. On January 6th, Channel 4[10] aired the full documentary, which was watched by 2.3 million viewers. Within 48 hours, the hashtag “#livingdolls” was tweeted over 34,000 times according to the Twitter analytics sites Topsy.[9]

    On the same day, Redditor ewybradyy submitted a photograph of a man wearing a female mask (shown below, left) to the /r/WTF[12] subreddit, where it received upwards of 13,000 up votes and 810 comments in the first 24 hours. On January 7th, BuzzFeed[11] highlighted several animated GIFs made from scenes in the documentary (shown below, right). In the coming days, several news sites posted articles about the documentary, including Gawker,[13] NY Daily News[14] and The Daily Dot.[15]

    Search Interest

    External References

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  • 01/08/14--17:23: Upvote Downvote GIFs
  • About

    Upvote Downvote GIFs are animated GIF images featuring upvote or downvote arrows from the community websites Reddit and Imgur, which are often used as reaction images addressing the quality of someone’s comment or post.


    On both Reddit and Imgur, users can cast an upvote or downvote for content and comments submitted to the site. On January 6th, 2011, Redditor SuriIllAnimateThat posted an animated GIF of a Reddit alien riding a narwhal through moving upvote arrows (shown below) to the /r/pics[2] subreddit. Prior to being archived, the post gained over 16,100 up votes and 1,100 comments.


    On May 31st, 2011, Redditor shaiboy submitted a GIF featuring a bomber military aircraft dropping upvotes (shown below left) to the /r/gifs[3] subreddit. On December 22nd, Redditor shark_taco posted an animated GIF of anti-aircraft cannons blasting upvotes into the sky (shown below, right) to the /r/funny[8] subreddit, receiving more than 1,000 up votes and 40 comments prior to being archived.

    On April 13th, 2012, Redditor TheNeutralParty submitted a post titled “Whenever I see someone who worked hard for his/her post but didn’t receive any upvotes” to the /r/funnysubreddit,[9] highlighting an edited scene from the medieval fantasy television series Game of Thrones in which the character Tyrion Lannister gives a prostitute a upvote arrow (shown below). Before the post was archived, it gathered upwards of 3,500 up votes and 40 comments.

    On April 26th, a gallery of upvote GIFs was submitted to Imgur.[10] On August 11th, the /r/upvotegifs[1] subreddit was create by Redditor kmp67, gaining more than 12,600 subscribers in the next two years.

    Matrix GIFs

    On June 6th, 2013, Redditor prannisment began posting the first in his series of Reddit-themed GIFs using scenes from the 1999 science fiction action film The Matrix to the /r/gifs[5] subreddit. Over the course of the next week, he continued uploading new Matrix GIFs, many of which featured the Reddit upvote and downvote arrows (shown below).[4][6]

    On June 13th, prannisement submitted a post titled “He is the One (OC)” to /r/gifs,[11] featuring an edited scene from The Matrix depicting the character Neo defending himself against a barrage of downvotes fired from pistols (shown below). Prior to being archived, the post garnered upwards of 37,000 up votes and 550 comments.

    On December 6th, prannisment submitted a new Matrix GIF titled “Matrix GIFs Reloaded” to the /r/gifs[7] subreddit, which featured an edited scene from the 2003 sequel The Matrix Reloaded. Within one month, the post gained over 26,000 up votes and 500 comments.

    Search Interest

    External References

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  • 01/09/14--04:22: Frozen's Race Controversy
  • About

    Some critics of Disney’s animated film Frozen are accusing the film of racism because all of the characters in the film are depicted as caucasian. These critics often address these claims by producing racebending fan art reimagining the characters as people of color.


    The first charge against Frozen came in December 2012 from Tumblr user Thiscouldhavebeenfrozen, who put out a call for artists to create racebending fan art images of Frozen characters.[1] The cause was picked up by other “social justice bloggers”, among them Tumblr blog Racebending.[ 13] The phenomenon has since sparked much discussion, particularly on Tumblr, Twitter and Reddit. The critics believe because there are no people of color in the film the indigenous people of Scandinavia (known as Sámi) featured in the movie have been whitewashed. Frozen’s race bending artwork show the characters portrayed as belonging to various non-white Arctic and Asian peoples (e.g. Inuit. Mongol).

    Opponents of the anti-Frozen campaign have argued that since the movie is set in a fantasy world inspired by the Scandinavia of the 1800s, it would not be appropriate to include people of color, while proponents argue that the movie is set in a fantasy world and as such could choose to have people of any color as main characters, or that it would not be impossible to find people of color in 17th century Europe.[3]



    Frozen critics argue Disney has whitewashed the character Kristoff, who is confirmed by co-director Jennifer Lee [4] to be a member of the Scandinavian indigenous people Sámi.[5] Anti-Frozen activists have argued that portraying Kristoff as blonde is racist, because according to them the Sámi are people of color. A proposed reimagining of Kristoff as “authentically Sámi” has spread on Tumblr.[6]

    The Sámi, though a people who have experienced and continue to face ethnic discrimination, would in fact pass as white in the United States, the country where this debate originated. Hence, the “Whitewashed Sámi” campaign has met some backlash and ridicule.[7]

    Some of the anti-Frozen activists insist that the Sámi appeared Asian at the time when the movie was set, but appear white today due to genetic mixing that has taken place since the 1800s. Some have even suggested that this genetic mixing was forced, a claim that has no basis in reality.[8] Photographs from the 1800s do appear to show that today’s variation in appearance was present among the Sámi in the past as well.[9]

    Misrepresentation and Appropriation of Sámi Culture

    Finally, the movie has been attacked for being disrespectful to the Sámi. This claim is supported by some Sámi bloggers [10] but also largely fronted by non-Sámi US-based bloggers.[11] They argue that Frozen misrepresents Sámi culture.[10] There have also been attacks on the movie’s musical score for cultural appropriation as it contains Sámi traditional yoik (chanting).

    While Disney’s portrayal of Sámi culture is indeed seen as disrespectful by some Sámi, other Sámi are of a different opinion. The elected President of the Norwegian Sámi, Aili Keskitalo, opened her New Year’s speech of 2014 with the following words:

    “In 2013 South Sámi Frode Fjellheim was invited to participate with music on Disney’s new, major animated movie Frozen. The yoik Eatnamen Vuelie and Fjellheim’s musical talent is now making a whole world listen to yoik. We are seeing the same in other cultural expressions: Sámi culture is expanding to ever new audiences.”[12]

    External References

    [1]Tumblr – “This could have been frozen” – Calling all artists
    fn2. Tumblr – “missl0nelyhearts” – Dissappointing from the get go
    fn3. Tumblr – “medievalpoc” – This is a collection of art depicting colored people in Denmark
    fn4. Twitter – “Alittlejee” – Kristoff is Sámi
    fn5. Wikipedia – Sámi People
    fn6. Tumblr – “Allthecolorsofdisney” – During Frozen, Kristoff is seen…
    fn7. Tumblr – “justsjwthings” – Behold the Black People of Northern Europe
    fn8. Reddit – There are white Sámi and PoC Sámi;
    Tumblr – “Oreides” – Sámi were predominantly PoC
    fn9. Bonaparte, Lapons
    fn10. Tumblr – “Selchie Productions” – Disney’s Frozen
    fn11. Tumblr – “Oreides” – Sámi were predominantly PoC
    fn12. Sámi Parliament – New Years’ Speech
    fn13. Tumblr- Racebending

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  • 01/09/14--09:35: Shaq Fu
  • Following the success of the Celebrity Shaquille O Neal’s rap album of the same name, Shaq Fu was a fighter released on the SNES to be known as one of the worst fighters of all time due to its impossibly difficult combos and stiff controls. As a direct result, organizations such as the, a site devoted to destroying every copy of Shaq Fu in existence, arose. This game was forgotten, until Shaquille O Neal himself confirmed the fact that a sequel was in the works for next generation consoles such as the Xbox One and the Playstation 4, claiming the graphics were “crazy.”

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    Shia LaBeouf’s Plagiarism Controversy refers to the online backlash surrounding Howard, a short film about an internet film critic who faces an internal conflict as he contemplates whether to write a positive or negative review for an upcoming film. Upon its online premiere in December 2013, the actor-turned-director was met with accusations of plagiarizing American cartoonist Daniel Clowes’ 2007 comic Justin M. Damiano, including direct quotes, dialogues and the narrative structure.


    On May 18th, 2012, LaBeouf’s short film was screened at the Cannes Film Festival, where it received critical acclaims and positive reviews, followed by its online premiere on Vimeo on December 16th, 2013.

    Shortly after the film was featured on Short of The Week, Twitter user John Gholson suggested that the film is based on Daniel Clowes’ Justin M. Damiano and linked to a digitally scanned copy of the original comic for comparison.

    Labeouf’s Apology

    Throughout the day, accusations of plagiarism against LaBeouf continued to build up momentum on Twitter[2], along with similar allegations from Clowes’ publisher and the author himself, eventually prompting the short film to be taken offline within hours of its online premiere. On the following day, Labeouf issued an apology via his Twitter handle @thecampaignbook,[3] which read:

    “Copying isn’t particularly creative work. Being inspired by someone else’s idea to produce something new and different IS creative work. In my excitement and naiveté as an amateur filmmaker, I got lost in the creative process and neglected to follow proper accreditation Im embarrassed that I failed to credit @danielclowes for his original graphic novella Justin M. Damiano, which served as my inspiration I was truly moved by his piece of work & I knew that it would make a poignant & relevant short. I apologize to all who assumed I wrote it. I deeply regret the manner in which these events have unfolded and want @danielclowes to know that I have a great respect for his work I fucked up.”


    On December 17th, Tim Carvel[7], a writer for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, introduced the Twitter hashtag #shialabeouffilms to mock LaBeouf’s copying of another artist’s work, which soon became associated with well-known film titles that have been reworded to sound like knock-offs, such as “WALL-F” (WALL-E) and “A Story About Some Talking Toys” (Toy Story).

    Yahoo Answers Plagiarism

    That same day, the story took an unexpected turn when Twitter user Andrew Hake further accused the actor of plagiarizing the apology from a Yahoo Answers submitted by user Lili in February 2010.

    Merely copying isn’t particularly creative work, though it’s useful as training and practice. Being inspired by someone else’s idea to produce something new and different IS creative work, and it may even revolutionalize the “stolen” concept."[5]

    Despite this revelation, LaBeouf continued to tweet apologetic messages that had been previously quoted by other celebrities, such as Alec Baldwin and Russell Crowe, without providing any attribution.

    Skywriting Apology

    On January 1st, 2014, LeBeouf hired a skywriter to write the message “I am sorry Daniel Clowes” above Los Angeles, California. and tweeted[6] a picture of it:

    - vapor floating in the atmosphere
    - remote servers used to SHAREDATA


    On January 7th, LaBeouf tweeted a photograph of a storyboard from his upcoming project “Daniel Boring” with the caption “Storyboard for my next short “Daniel Boring” and the hashtag “#original.” However, it was quickly revealed to be a direct lift of Clowes’ comic “David Boring.” The next day, LaBeouf posted a picture of a cease-and-desist letter he received from Clowes’ lawyer via Twitter.[8] The letter, which asks LaBeouf to avoid any further copyright infringement of Clowes’ work, included the photograph of the “David Boring” storyboard tweeted by the actor as a reference.

    External References

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  • 01/09/14--11:25: Scroogled
  • The word “Scroogled” is invented by Microsoft to say that Google steals your identy.

    It’s a combination of “Google” and “Screwed”.

    Microsoft invented also merchandise with “Scroogle” and other Google-degradading texts. The most weel-known text for Scroogled is the following text with the Google Chrome logo above of it:
    “Keep calm
    We steal
    your data”

    “Scroogled will go on as long as Google keeps Scroogling people.”trans Microsoft Says Scroogled Ad Campaign Will Continue Image” ~Official Microsoft Company Statement

    Some things that the “Scroogle-team” says:

    “You didn’t think Google would be satisfied with a place in your pocket, did you? The world’s dominant search engine has displayed an impressive proclivity for the big breakthrough in recent years, but until it announced its acquisition of Boston Dynamics this weekend, it was hard to say just what Big G’s long-range strategy might be. Now we know. Google wants to rule the world. It began with a search engine, but it won’t stop until the world runs on Google’s technology.”

    They also posted a link where the government of The Netherlands says that Google breaks the law:

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    On January 7th, 2014, Elle released four cover photos for its upcoming Women in TV issue, featuring Allison Williams (Girls_), Amy Poehler (Parks and Recreation_), Zooey Deschanel (New Girl) and Mindy Kaling (The Mindy Project). That same day, women’s interest blog Jezebel highlighted the magazine’s cover photos in an article titled “Mindy Kaling’s Elle Cover Looks Different Than the Others,” which observed that Kaling is the only cover model whose photograph was shot in close-up and black-and-white, while the rest were framed in the magazine’s typical 3/4 fashion.

    Four of television’s brightest female stars -- Mindy Kaling, Amy Poehler, Allison Williams and Zooey Deschanel -- were chosen to individually cover Elle’s February issue, but only one got the up-close, cropped treatment. Can you guess which one?
    If your answer was “probably the woman who’s on the record saying she’s a size 8, not a size zero, and also happens to be the lone woman of color,” then congratulations! You get a cookie…which is unfortunately flavored with bitterness and institutionalized inequality.


    This controversy echos a similar situation with actress Melissa McCarthy’s November 2013 issue of Elle. The actress, who is also heavier than the traditional Hollywood actress was dressed in a large coat for her cover, in stark contrast to the tight outfits actresses on the cover normally wear. Many called the cover fatphobic, but McCarthy defended it, saying she liked her cover.[4]

    Notable Developments

    News Media Coverage

    Kaling is the only actress of color in this group and the only women with a heavier body type, leading to speculation that the decision to make Kaling’s cover different then the others could have been based on racial or body type reasons. [1]

    Elle’s Response

    On the next day, Elle’s editorial staff addressed the controversy in a follow-up post titled “About That Mindy Kaling Cover.”

    “Mindy looks sexy, beautiful and chic. We think it is a striking and sophisticated cover and are thrilled to celebrate her in our Women in TV Issue.”[2]

    Kaling’s Response

    Also on January 7th, Kaling defended the cover with a statement via Twitter:
    bq. “Wishing for more skin on my @ELLEmagazine cover? Chris Messina & I are naked on a brand new #themindyproject tonight, ya pervs! 930/830 FOX,”
    bq. “I love my @ELLEmagazine cover. It made me feel glamorous & cool. And if anyone wants to see more of my body, go on thirteen dates with me.”[3]

    External References

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  • 01/09/14--16:16: Chris Christie
  • About

    Christopher “Chris” Christie is an American politician who is currently serving as the 55th Governor of New Jersey and a leading member of the Republican Party. On the Internet, Christie has garnered a favorable reputation for his down-to-earth public image.

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  • 01/10/14--07:43: Quenelle
  • About

    “La quenelle” is a gesture popularized by French/Cameroon comedian Dieudonné M’bala M’bala in his shows.
    The gesture consists of having one arm pointing down while the opposite hand is held at the shoulder of the arm pointing down.
    It is meant to be a gesture of anti-system but some people believe it to be anti-semetic as it resembles an inverted nazi salute.


    The first time that Dieudonné made the gesture was in 2005 in his show “1905”. During one the sketches, he talks about how the mammals are observing the humans and that dolphins are mocking us. He does the gesture to show how deeps the dolphins will screw us with their fins.


    For many years, people in the French speaking community have been taking pictures of themselves with the quenelle at famous places or next to celebrities. Even famous people do it like French football player Nicolas Anelka. During the year 2013 the numbers of pictures with people doing the quenelle increased fast.

    The general population has been aware of this phenomenon recently as Manuel Valls, the French Minister of Interior, has recently started a war against the comedian and is trying to ban his current show Le Mur. This has begun in France a debate about what Manuel Valls is doing and if it’s against the liberty of expression or not.


    Dieudonné M’bala M’bala was born on the eleventh of February 1966 at Fontenay-aux-Roses. He gained notoriety in the 90’s when he was in a comical duo with Elie Semoun. Their partnership ended in 1997 and they both pursued a solo career.
    He is the manager of the theatre La Main d’Or in Paris where he performs most of the time. Since his beginnings with Elie Semoun to this day he has written and performed in 18 shows.

    At first a popular spokesperson against racism, he has himself been accused of racism since 2003 when he performed a sketch on a television show On ne peut pas plaire à tout le monde where he played as a Israeli settler.

    Since this TV performance, his personality is at the centre of many debates. He is considered by some to be anti-semetic and persona non grata while others believe that he is victim of a system run by Zionist Lobbies.


    Quenelle Tumblr

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  • 01/10/14--08:52: Shots Fired
  • About

    Shots Fired is a catchphrase used to indicate someone has insulted someone in an effectively cutting way, and implies the insulted party will most likely engage with the insulter.


    “Shots fired” was originally used as a police phrase to indicate gun violence had broken out. The phrase was first added to Urban Dictionary[1] on September 7th, 2009 by user He Who Is Awesome. It is defined as, “When you blatantly diss or call out somebody you have a disagreement or problem with.”


    The hashtag #shotsfired was first used in this context by @MontyThe Mach on April 20th, 2009.[2][3] As of January 2014 Instagram[4] users have tagged over 76,000 pictured with the hashtag #shotsfired. Common themes throughout these pictures include cutting e-cards, visual “your mom” jokes, and screen grabs from TV shows.

    Notable Examples

    Search Interest

    External References

    [1]Urban Dictionary – Shots Fired

    [2]Twitter – MontyTheMack

    [3]Topsy- #ShotsFired

    [4]Webstagram- #ShotsFired

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    The 2014 North American Polar Vortex is an extreme weather event that is believed to have originated from a distortion in the large cyclone near the Earth’s north pole, also known as the “polar vortex”, resulting in heavy snowfall and record-breaking declines in temperature across the United States and Canada.


    On January 2nd, 2014, the nonprofit weather news site Climate Central[2] published an article about an influx of cold air heading toward the Midwest United States. Estimating a steep decline in temperatures from 20 to 40 degrees below average across, the article attributed the cold wave to a section of the polar vortex that had broken off and drifted south.

    Notable Developments

    News Media Coverage

    In the coming days, many news sites published articles about the polar vortex and the impending cold weather, including The Washington Post,[4] Fox News,[5] Slate,[6] The New York Post,[7] Mashable,[8] Time[9] and The Huffington Post.[10]

    Online Reaction

    On January 6th, the Internet humor site Heavy[3] published a compilation of notable polar vortex-related image macros and photoshopped pictures (shown below).

    On the same day, BuzzFeed[12] highlighted several tweets in which people burned themselves trying to throw boiling water into the air to make snow during the cold snap.

    According to the Twitter analytics site Topsy,[13]“polar vortex” mentions peaked at over 77,000 on January 6th.

    On January 8th, Redditor rocconyew submitted a post claiming to have discovered a photograph of a woman doing a flip in a bikini while searching for the phrase “polar vortex” (shown below, left) to the /r/funny[1] subreddit. Within 48 hours, the post garnered upwards of 7,700 up votes and 180 comments. On the following day, Redditor koley submitted a Polandball comic titled “The Polar Vortex” to the /r/polandball[11] subreddit, in which an America ball is frozen in a block of ice (shown below, right). In the first 24 hours, the post garnered over 4,100 up votes and 350 comments.

    Search Interest

    External References

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  • 01/10/14--11:13: Cards Against Humanity
  • About

    Cards Against Humanity is a game featuring Mad Libs style cards players have to match with word cards in amusing ways. It is often compared to the more family friendly card game Apples to Apples. Its tagline is “a party game for horrible people.”


    The game was created by a group of friends for a New Year’s Eve party. It was then uploaded to their website[5] where people could download a printable version of the cards for free. Users can still download the free version even though as of 2012 a printed version became available for purchase.


    To play cards against humanity, each player begins with ten white cards each. Then one player designated as the "card czar draws a black card, which poses a question or has a statement with one or more blank. Each player then plays one card they think will fit with the black card in the funniest way. The card czar selects their favorite, and that player receives the black card. This process then repeats with a new car czar.

    There are several alternative ways to play including “God is Dead,” when players work without a card czar, and “Never Have I Ever,” when players may discard cards they don’t understand as long as they admit their lack of knowledge to the group.[5]

    Kickstarter Campaign

    On December 10th, 2010 Max Temkin created a Kickstarter Campaign[1] to create a printed box set. Pledging $15 dollars would get backers the box set, while $30 would get them the set as well as 16 custom printed cards. The project received well over their $4,000 goal, when it ended on January 30th they had raised over $15,000.

    Online History

    Cards Against Humanity players will sometimes photograph their funniest card pairing and upload them to Tumblr, Reddit, or Instagram. Some of these pairing were collected in a Buzzfeed[4] post titled “21 Hilarious, Awkward, And Painful Rounds Of Cards Against Humanity” published on Sepetember 30th, 2013.

    Ladies Against Humanity

    Ladies Against Humanity[2] is a Tumblr blog created by Kate Stayman-London[3] on January 8th, 2014. The blog features images of Cards Against Humanity style cards with female-centric jokes created by Stayman-London or submitted by other Tumblr users.

    Headlines Against Humanity

    Headlines Against Humanity[6] is a website created in January 2014 devoted to examining “click bait” headlines. On the homepage two cards stylized like Cards Against Humanity cards each contain a headline; one real, and one fake. Visitors to the site click on the card they believe to be the real headline and the card flips revealing if their guess was correct.

    Search Interest

    External References

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  • 01/10/14--12:48: Pokebank Postponed
  • Pokebank is a service announced by Nintendo, meant to be released in North America on Dec.27th. Similar to cloud services, Pokebank allows the user to store there pokemon up in the cloud for annual fee. The app also has a companion app called Poketransfer, in which you can transfer pokemon from the previous generation of pokemon games, Pokemon Black and White, and then transfer them to the current generation of games, Pokemon X & Y.


    Due to a large volume of traffic of Dec.26th, which also caused people to have trouble creating Nintendo ids, for the Nintendo Network service, Pokebank’s release was postponed till a later date, which has not yet been announced.


    This postponing caused a stir among pokemon fans, who were excited for this service. Fanboys would go on Twitter and Facebook and spam in the comments section on every post made by Nintendo “POKEBANK”. Nintendo has not yet replied to all the criticism and reaction.

    Hacked Pokemon

    When the service was released in Japan, users were uploading hacked pokemon to the cloud, which could potentially crash the games Pokemon X and Y. Nintendo has temporally taken down the service in Japan

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