Dyson Invents New Ventilator in 10 Days

When called upon to help with the Coronavirus pandemic by the UK government, James Dyson put his teams to work and came up with a new Dyson ventilator in 10 days that goes into production immediately.
“A ventilator supports a patient who is no longer able to maintain their own airways, but sadly there is currently a significant shortage, both in the UK and other countries around the world,” Dyson wrote.
And noted: “This new device can be manufactured quickly, efficiently and at volume,” Dyson added, that the ventilator has been designed to “address the specific needs” of COVID patients.

Why it’s hot:

By running to the pandemic tasks, brands can use their ensure good will post pandemic. Dyson is a well oiled machine and its impressive which brands can pivot on a dime.

Furloughed Sports Commentator Makes the Mundane Competitive

Nick Heath, a rugby announcer from London has recently been put out of a job. Yes, the novel coronavirus has put a temporary end to sports and an end to the career of an announcer. But an announcers job is never done..

Nick’s twitter has obtained viral fame as he narrates the doldrums of London.

Here’s Nick’s origin story.

Why It’s Hot?

People are looking for a moment of levity and everyone wants to feel useful! Which ways are laid off jobs a perfect fit for a current cultural need.

 

Social Platforms are Banning Covid Misinformation

Social platforms are taking a stand against Covid misinformation. Both individually and as a group of brands. Twitter statements below:

Some of misinformation that Twitter has removed:

  • “Coronavirus is not heat-resistant—walking outside is enough to disinfect you.”
  • “Use aromatherapy and essential oils to prevent COVID-19.”
  • “Drinking bleach and ingesting colloidal silver will cure COVID-19.”
  • “COVID-19 does not infect children because we haven’t seen any cases of children being sick.”
  • “Coronavirus is a fraud and not real—go out and patronize your local bar!!”
  • “The news about washing your hands is propaganda for soap companies, stop washing your hands.”
  • “Ignore news about COVID-19, it’s just an attempt to destroy capitalism by crashing the stock market.”
  • “The National Guard just announced that no more shipments of food will be arriving for 2 months—run to the grocery store ASAP and buy everything!”
  • “If you can hold your breath for 10 seconds, you do not have coronavirus.”
  • “If you have a wet cough, it’s not coronavirus—but a dry cough is.”
  • “You’ll feel like you’re drowning in snot if you have coronavirus—it’s not a normal runny nose.”
  • “People with dark skin are immune to COVID-19 due to melanin production.”
  • “Reading the Quran will make an individual immune to COVID-19.”
  • “Avoid businesses owned by Chinese people as they are more likely to have COVID-19.”

Here is a joint statement from the social platforms jointly:

Why it’s hot?

We’re living in an era of misinformation at the time where being able to rely on is mission critical. Facebook’s past mistakes with leaving up misinformation (as well as during the current election season) has reduced their credibility. Personal hypothesis: More are flocking to Twitter and Reddit to get information, giving these other platforms a boost right when everyone is spending a lot more time online.

Coronavirus Researchers Are Using Technology to Predict the Viral Path

As Coronavirus fears spread and hand sanitizer and face masks fly off the shelves, the question is, how to we prevent and mitigate.

Researchers are looking to AI for the solution. “John Brownstein, chief innovation officer at Boston Children’s Hospital and a professor at Harvard Medical School, built a tool called Healthmap after SARS killed 774 people around the world in the mid-2000s, his team built a tool called Healthmap, which scrapes information about new outbreaks from online news reports, chatrooms and more. Healthmap then organizes that previously disparate data, generating visualizations that show how and where communicable diseases like the coronavirus are spreading. Healthmap’s output supplements more traditional data-gathering techniques used by organizations like the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO). The project’s data is being used by clinicians, researchers and governments.”

https://www.arcgis.com/apps/opsdashboard/index.html#/bda7594740fd40299423467b48e9ecf6

https://healthmap.org/en/

Why it’s hot?

Data is magic! We need to use all the resources at our disposal to mitigate the effects of the epidemic.

r/NoSleep Opens Up a Much Needed Conversation about Content Ownership

This Monday r/NoSleep (one of Reddits top 15 subreddits) shuttered its doors – albeit temporarily – due to content theft.

Try it for yourself: https://www.reddit.com/r/nosleep/ (closed at time of posting)

This blackout is taking a cue from writer T-Jay Lea who’s internet story went viral in 2012. His story The Expressionless, has been taken, adapted hundreds of times without his permission. His reaction was to start The Writers Blackout, a movement to prevent theft of internet writing by YouTubers.

Reddit’s R/NoSleep explains: “The Writer’s Blackout is a movement designed to help authors receive fair compensation from YouTube narrators via direct mediation and/or advice from experienced writers. In addition, this movement strives to provide writers with personal advice on individual negotiations, working out fee options such as revenue percentages, view to dollar ratios or royalty rights. In short, we must stress that the core imperative of the movement is to strictly enforce that writers receive fair pay for their work.”

“Within 24 hours it had exploded,” Lea told Mashable. “I mean *exploded* to the point that Twitter was freaking out over it, Snopes had to run a debunking article on it and YouTube influencers left, right and centre were jumping on it to react.”

“Ultimately, we want to achieve a standard baseline of pay for all writers when negotiating with any content creator that makes substantial profit on various platforms, build bridges with smaller or non-profit channels that can foster good relations as they grow, educate writers on what constitutes fair rates for their work (online adaptations pay differently to a publication, for example), educate narrators on copyright laws, and ensure everyone benefits,” Lea told Mashable.

“Craig Thompson, a YouTuber known as Mini Ladd, issued a public apology after his channel was threatened with deletion due to the copyright strikes it received from NoSleep writers.”

“After a particularly rough week involving our authors having their content stolen, I had the idea of shutting down the subreddit so that the content thieves couldn’t see it to take it,” Druga told Mashable. “Just kind of an angry, irrational thought that grew into an actual idea.”

“So many people think that, because the stories are free to read, they’re also free to use,” lead r/NoSleep moderator, Christine Druga, said. “This is not the case at all. The stories are protected by copyright law the moment they are posted. We’re hoping that closing the subreddit will not only make those who take the content without permission, credit, and/or compensation see that they’ve been doing it wrong and change their ways, but that fans of both r/NoSleep (and anywhere that r/NoSleep content has been shared) will learn about the issue as well so that they can properly support the authors.”

Source: https://mashable.com/article/nosleep-subreddit-private-protest-copyright-theft/

Why It’s Hot?

So much of our jobs is based off of intellectual property. After the years of Barstool Sports, F*ck Jerry and The Fat Jewish stealing intellectual property, we thought these days are behind us. But on the internet, we can’t have nice things. Some of the internet’s most interesting stories come from Reddit, but without recognition, and compensation, we might lose out on some of the great things Reddit (and the internet community at large) has to offer.

This is a great way to bring attention to the content theft, people might not even be  Readers have to understand that “just because it’s free to read, it’s not free to use.”

Write Your Memoir without Putting Pen to Paper

A new “service called Forevernote, which takes on the task of turning your memories into a memoir on your behalf.” Any life can be a memoir now. “Essentially, Forevernote gives you your own biographer. Sign up yourself or a loved one for the service and whether you’re looking to share a few short snippets of advice or a full detailed account of someone’s life, a trained biographer will help you shape your narrative and get you ready for a one-on-one interview.”

The one on one interview is transcribed and written by you or professional editors at Forevernote.

https://mashable.com/shopping/feb-18-forevernote-personalized-life-story-memoir/

Why it’s hot?

This addresses a niche gap in the market. They could incorporate innovation if they are using AI at all to transcribe interviews or even right.

Clearing out Your Facebook “Outside of app” Activity

Facebook is recording your off app activity and using it to market it to you. FUN. “As of Tuesday, you can now turn off the collection and sharing of data that sites and apps send to Facebook.”

“Websites and apps use Facebook’s Pixel and software development kit (SDK) to collect information about your device and your activity, and send that to Facebook. Facebook uses that information to then show you targeted ads.”

Some cell phones companies are notifying users when phones are collecting GPS and other data when they’re not using the app. ” Also, turning off this type of data sharing does mean that you won’t be able to use Facebook to log in to other apps or sites.”

Why it’s hot?

Facebook is responding to the negative feedback they’ve had about user privacy. With Cambridge Analytica and other data losses, its good to see them respond.

Amazon’s Ring Sees a Slew of Horrifying Hacks

The videos are blood curdling. We are now seeing negative stories break about Ring video hackings. They are of predatory, pranking or threatening (mostly) men speaking to women through rings speaker feature. 

This is a horrible PR incident for Ring, though their response seems like a perfectly logical answer to how this might have happened (double use of username/passwords) and that they are we’re still investigating this issue & taking appropriate steps to protect our devices based on our investigation, we’re able to confirm this is in no way related to a breach of Ring’s security.” If the problem is user error but the consequences can cripple your business… How do you insure that it doesn’t happen again? Forced 2FA?

Why it’s hot?

This is especially important for our security category clients. This can be an opportunity but it’s also a risk for current clients. This also can lead to generalized fear of technology and this kind of security progress. It hurts the category generally. If people can’t trust that they’re not being watched, digital security is rendered moot.

The Rise of Skywalker Takes Over Facebook Messenger

Disney took their media takeover full throttle last week and launched a new sticker and reaction line on Facebook messenger dedicated to Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.

The changes include “a new Star Wars theme for its Messenger app, which gives it a starry background, a new set of SW-related stickers and special effects that will let you jump into hyperspace or turn you into a rebel fighter, among others.”

The only catch is it’s only available for some not all!

https://www.facebook.com/facebookapp/videos/831254103992198/

Why It’s Hot?

This is a bigger takeover than we’ve seen on Facbeook. Which makes sense for the seminal Star Wars finale movie. Will Facebook be open to more customization soon? For the right price?

 

This Dog Can Talk!

Meet Stella, the talking dog. Stella’s mom Christina Hunger is a speech language pathologist. Per Bustle, Christina “uses her skills to teach Stella how to communicate. According to Hunger, Stella already knows 29 words and can even form five-word phrases or sentences.”

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4AcoDPnNkO/

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4QAxF1ht3K/

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4VfYtFhJLV/

This seems pretty legit. We’ve seen science in non-verbal communication advance a lot over the years

Why it’s hot?

Here at MRM we’re OBSESSED with linguistics. And rightfully so! There is so much amazing data about how we communicate and what guides language. Think about what else we don’t know.

 

Look at this Meme!

When meme’s collide! In order to understand today’s politics — it’s time to KNOW YOUR MEME. In order to understand why a Nickelback song from 2008 is trending on Twitter today.

This story starts at the global turn against the band. There is debate about when the tide turned. It’s either:

  1. A general outgrowing and distaste for grunge that sounds like a copy of a copy
  2. Chad Kroeger’s voice that some might say sounds like “a creepy maroon 5”
  3. A very embarassing UK furniture advertisement:

About the meme: according to Know Your Meme, “On April 27th, 2015, YouTuber Euphemism for Magic uploaded a video titled “Nickelstats,” in which Kroeger is shown holding a framed bar graph while singing “Look at this graph” (shown below). The same day, the video was submitted to the /r/youtubehaiku subreddit, where it received upwards of 4,500 votes (95% upvoted) and 120 comments in the first two weeks.”

It’s since been a long parodied meme and had huge success on Vine.

Apparently Trump tried to use the meme this morning to further his story against Hunter Biden.

However as you can see, Nickelback reported the video for copyright infringement…

Maybe Nickleback is due for a comeback?

Photograph by Nickelback also happens to be Shantie’s favorite song….

Why It’s Hot?

I personally love the depth of understanding that’s required for internet memes. But it’s a language that so many are fluent in, maybe without even understanding all the parts…

More on The Claw: How it’s Production Is Key to It’s Success (and Regulation Avoidance)

The Hot Sauce fascination with the success of White Claw can’t be ignored! To debate more of whether the claw is a fad or a new staple, we need to take a look into how its “brewed” (which it is!, brewed, that is) and how it’s formulation allows it to be subject to less regulation.

Rather than a spiked/vodka soda, a Claw does not originate as a spirit, and is instead brewed, like a beer (it also has a similar alcohol content to beer) which allows it to be sold with less regulation, especially in NY and other states with tougher spirit regulations and strong alcohol lobbying groups (MA, I’m looking at you!) But since it is not brewed with grain – the Claw uses sugar, which gets fermented fully into alcohol – the taste is milder and the output less caloric.

Why It’s Hot? 

Think of this as innovation, not a fad. Per our regulatory system, we can’t add small amounts of spirits to soda and sell it like beer, even if its alcohol content is 5% or less. This work around allows a preferred bar drink, especially to those who count calories, to be served up at our corner bodegas and local CVS’. The Claw’s the law and it’s here to stay.

Facebook’s New Facial Recognition Update + Facial Recognition Blocking Tech

Facebook’s is updating how users can opt in and out of facial recognition. This has been a hot topic online for a few years and Facebook facing a multi million dollar lawsuit about its facial recognition practices is the reason for the change.

Mashable notes “The lawsuit dates back to 2015, but has been slowly progressing — and so far not in Facebook’s favor. The company recently lost an appeal in which it attempted to have the suit dismissed.”

Consumers were allowed to opt in and out of “tagging suggestions” in 2017 but were not told that that came with facial recognition. Facial recognition is being used to target protesters in Hong Kong (and protesters have been attacking facial recognition cameras).

So what do you do in a world where facial recognition is no longer opt-in?

THESE SUPER COOL SHADES

The “phantom” shades reflect light back from infrared cameras but not normal visible light. Fom Mashable: “The frames are specifically designed to defeat 3D dot matrix face-mapping systems, which is basically what makes Apple’s Face ID work. They bounce infrared light back at its source, with the goal of preventing IR video cameras from getting a good image of your face — or potentially even registering your face as a face at all.”

Why It’s Hot?

We are living in a facial recognition world and you are automatically opted into being a facial recognition girl… We’re seeing how facial recognition can be used maliciously in other countries and we are, as a matter of course of being online and on the streets, opted into a system that we did not agree to. The glasses tech is cool but does not speak to the greater issue of what is going on around us and how AI technology might affect us in the coming years.

Update: YouTube Adds Features to Make it Less Terrifying for Children

As a follow up to an often mentioned topic on Hot Sauce, YouTube is trying desperately to court brands that are finding the networks AI to be unsafe and promoting fringe ideas or are dangerous to children. 

YouTube’s original answer to it’s child algorithm problem was an app whitelisting sources so that parents could put children in front of YouTube without fear of what they might find (not a great parenting technique but that’s neither here nor there… ). Originally YouTube incentivized views at all costs, and content makers turned to AI to auto-generate films that were hurting children’s cognition.

They’ve hired a whole team to support this initiative, and they finally have actual humans watching the video. YouTube was losing a lot of revenue because of brand safety.

Why it’s hot?

AI can be dangerous. Keeping humans involved and not letting AI run wild is key to success even if it means slower revenue. If you don’t make brand safety and human safety a concern you might lose out on LOTS of revenue down the line. Is money the only way to keep big tech and AI accountable?

Chicken Sandwiches Are Having Their Viral Moment, But Are We Over Brands Fake Fighting on Twitter

Popeyes has a new chicken sandwich (which I’ve head is delicious). And it seems that Chick-fil-a is getting defensive with the new Tweet they’ve posted.

Popeyes responded as a matter of course…

And TYPICAL WENDYS, clapped back with this tweet.

At the end of the day this started a branded chicken sandwich themed posting frenzy.

But the real question is, how do consumers feel about this.

Why it’s hot?

Do these brand rivalries entertain customers or piss them off. A few customers have responded with takes about larger issues.

But we can’t expect Wendy’s to act like anything but Wendys. Guess brand consistency is key…

 

But Why Isn’t It Called the TacHotel?

Tacobell and Netflix are the two fastest growing brands in the US between 2018 and 19. And it show’s by the lengths Taco Bell has gone to establish their new brand presence. In their most recent update… the Taco Bell Hotel (we think TacHotel would be a superior name).

The Taco Bell Hotel courted micro influencers. Including Taco Bell Sommelier who matches wine pairings to your order…

https://www.instagram.com/tacobellsommelier/

https://www.instagram.com/p/B0OBgWRFEqy/

and Yo Quiero Taco Ballads (seen with a shaven Taco Bell logo above) who will compose a song to match your taco bell receipt.

https://www.instagram.com/yoquierotacoballads/

Why it’s hot?
Well this hot sauce is just plain HOT. Spicy tacos’ in Palm beach hot. BUT rewarding micro influencers with one of a kind experiences is why this post is hot. These content creators are building their own fan bases without the expectation of being rewarded, but the rewards will ensure they continue being brand fans to their 500-1500 followers.

Source: https://www.adweek.com/brand-marketing/we-spent-a-night-at-the-taco-bell-hotel-where-everything-is-supremely-on-brand/

 

Doing it for the Gram: Darwin Awards Edition

We all do it for the gram. But how far is too far. Instragram influencers have been falling ill after swimming in a lake that looks beautiful… but is actually toxic sludge.

View this post on Instagram

Toxic ⚠️

A post shared by Laura ☯️ (@lauramr_13) on

https://www.instagram.com/p/BwIH0SYgkRp/

https://www.instagram.com/p/BuylwPLB4oM/

View this post on Instagram

#01

A post shared by qué capulla (@que_capulla) on

“Spanish news outlet Publico reported multiple Instagram influencers were recently hospitalized due to rashes and digestive issues after entering the water.

One Instagram influencer told Publico they began vomiting and developed a rash that lasted for two weeks after entering the water for a photo.

Another influencer said they had to be hospitalized for “damage to the skin and digestive system.”

However, another tourist said that despite getting a nasty rash, “the picture was worth it.”

See the geo-tag… there are children there! 

Oh and the viral news of the lake’s toxicity… has made the spot even more popular.

WHY ITS HOT? 

We’ve heard stories about people falling off cliffs or dying in freak selfie accidents. This shows the way the world will bend to create the social media illusion of a curated life…. even if that pristine selfie is full of WW2 mining chemicals.

Source: https://news.yahoo.com/instagram-influencers-getting-sick-swimming-145600523.html

Is FaceApp an Giant Russian Conspiracy… or Just an App with a Really Severe Privacy Policy

FaceApp has had it’s time in the sun over the past two years. Don’t you remember famous hits like “what you look like as a woman/man” or the very un PC “what you look like as another race”?

This week our entire feeds are filled with FaceApp photos of our friends if they were old. As well as warnings about how the tech is Russian. In our friends defense, the tech is VERY eerie.

https://twitter.com/yashar/status/1151311662592532480

Yes, the FaceApp tech has a very scary privacy/end user agreement:

But the best hot take of all comes from VICE… 

It’s not that the App is Russian is bad, it’s us allowing apps to have this much data about us at all…

“Extracting data from unsuspecting users, selling and sharing that data god-knows-where, and justifying it by providing users unreadable privacy policies is a near-universal practice. It transcends Cold War phobias. It’s not Russian. It’s not American. It’s a fundamentally capitalist practice. Companies can only provide free apps and profit if they scrape and share data from the people that use it.”

WHY ITS HOT?

We allow apps like Facebook, Instagram and snapchat to access much deeper levels of our data than they need, but it takes a true Russian scare to call us to action about this issue.

Try On a New Lipstick… On YouTube

For those of us who go down YouTube Makeup tutorial rabbit holes, like myself. It’s easy to get discouraged that you don’t have the color to look for yourself… that’s half the point of watching the video.

Well, YouTube has a solve for that (and for makeup brands who want to sell product). Try on while you watch!

“The feature is currently in the very early stages of development — alpha testing — and is being offered to YouTube creators through Google’s  in-house branded content program, FameBit. Through this program, brands are connected with YouTube influencers who market their products through paid sponsorships.”

YouTube has already found that 30% of viewers chose to try the experience when it was available on the iOS app. And those who tried spent an average of more than 80s engaging with the tool.

YouTube’s new AR Beauty Try-On lets viewers virtually try on makeup while watching video reviews

Why it’s hot?

A mix of VR and ecom! This beauty try-on gets over a big makeup hurdle. However this is not totally new. This is something sephora has done on their website, but it’s a much harder UI, this new way with YouTube should score google some extra referral cash, and users entering buy pages would be much more primed.

The Revolution Will Be … Heavily Effected by Digital

With some major changes happening globally, its interesting to note the ways that the digital world around us are affecting where attention falls and how we perceive international events. Two examples from this week, the massacre in Sudan and the protests in Hong Kong are key to understanding how innovation is not only affecting how we take in global media but how events unfold.

Protesters in Hong Kong wait on huge lines to pay cash. 

Use of octopus cards to show proof of demonstration was used to convict the “Umbrella 9”  in 2014.

In this case, protesters are being deliberate about the digital footprint they are leaving, something that protesters in 2014 didnt know to be wary of.

Instagram gets close and personal with Influencers from Sudan 

Mashable reports: “On Thursday, Shahd Khidir, a Sudanese influencer and blogger who mainly shares beauty, fashion, and lifestyle content, went “off-brand” to raise awareness to her nearly 64,000 Instagram followers about the dire situation in Sudan. Khidir, who is based in New York City, posted a photograph of herself crying at her desk along with a heartbreaking story about her friend, who she learned had recently been murdered in Sudan.”

I noted amongst my friends (a HIGHLY informal poll) that those who tended to use instagram were talking about the Sudan, while Twitter users were talking about Donald Trump’s interview with George Stephonopoulos.

The hashtags #IAmTheSudanRevolution#SudanUprising, and #Sudanese_Protest are trending and a much younger group than those typically concerned with international news.

Why It’s Hot? 

Imagine the Tienemen Square protests on social and how the Arab Spring was affected by social and digital. Our world is evolving around these innovations and will continue to change as our digital world evolves

The Internet is Addicted to the Droste Effect

“My mom painted this and said no one would like it. It’s her 2nd painting.” It’s the line that launched a thousand paintings….

Leave it to reddit to take this mom: 

Source: https://imgur.com/Y0Dg3lx

and meme her. Hard.

Let’s start at the top, this first came to my attention via this great Twitter thread:

And of course someone tracked it:

Source: http://nubleh.github.io/i_painted/old.html

And in breaking news, the egret has arrived!!!

Source: https://imgur.com/8bNoFs5

It turns out this is called the Droste Effect, coined after Droste Cocoa, which featured a nun holding a box of Cocoa with her own face on it.

But this is what the internet LIKES. Here is a video of Kyle MacLachlan, doing an impression of Anne Frances, doing an impression of Catherine O’Hara playing Moira Rose on Schitt’s Creek. You’re welcome.

<<Features some NSFW language>>

https://twitter.com/Kyle_MacLachlan/status/1093626361762275328

https://twitter.com/AM2DM/status/1087356642591719427

Why it’s hot?

They pay me to keep on top of the internet memes so you don’t have to

 

For the love of Krang!

ALERT ALERT! Krang down!

@KrangTNelson, a joke on Craig T Nelson’s name and brainy villian from Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, and king of weird Twitter has had his account suspended — as have some of Twitter’s most popular Weird Twitter accounts.

If your at this hot sauce post to find out why… well we don’t have the answers for you but we do have 1000 Twitter users guesses.

Many assume that he was “bot spammed”, meaning many troll bots repeatedly reported the account as a spam account.

The internet is VERY unhappy with this, especially with how lax Twitter has been with hate speech, other weird tweeter Julius Goat:

https://twitter.com/JuliusGoat/status/1091293393928536070

But the person who is probably the saddest about this…

Well not the dog, this is our own James Stewart Meudt’s Twitter profile pic.

Why it’s hot?

Weird Twitter probably had a hot sauce debut, it’s what so many brands base their voice/tone TW presence on. Bot’s taking down many of the internet’s fave Weird TW accounts is troubling at best. Even our chaos is being ruined by chaos.

Somehow Hagfish Technology is the Future

I don’t know how. But it is.

Trending now, after a truck accident that left one car covered in slime. People are having hagfish fever!

What is a Hagfish? It’s an eel like isopod that creates a slick slime when threatened. According to The Atlantic, “typically, a hagfish will release less than a teaspoon of gunk from the 100 or so slime glands that line its flanks. And in less than half a second, that little amount will expand by 10,000 times—enough to fill a sizable bucket. Reach in, and every move of your hand will drag the water with it.”

What is truly cool is the structure of the slime, it’s almost like a spider web that quickly unravels when the hagfish is in danger. “Once these cells are expelled from the slime glands, they rupture, releasing the threads within them. Ewoldt’s colleague Gaurav Chaudhury found that despite their length, the threads can fully unspool in a fraction of a second. The pull of flowing water is enough to unwind them. But the process is even quicker if the loose end snags on a surface, like another thread, or a predator’s mouth.”

Watch the hagfish basically drown it’s predators! And how they survive the inital bite? “The animal is effectively wearing a set of extremely loose pajamas,” Fudge says. If a predator attacks, “the body sort of squishes out of the way.”

Why it’s hot?

Sometimes nature’s technology is the coolest of all. I’d love to see how studies on hagfish slime and it’s genetic composition and properties, might turn into new technology.

https://twitter.com/edyong209/status/1088787389441556481

Source: https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2019/01/hagfish-slime/581002/

 

Cardi B Goes Viral Against The #TrumpShutdown (Bad Language Warning)

On Wednesday night, Cardi B released a video on her Instagram handle, going off on the Trump administrations choice to keep the government shut down and for federal employees to work without pay.

<<NSFW language warning goes here>>

United States Senator from Hawaii Brian Schatz and Chris Murphy, Senator from Connecticut, debated retweeting her video. With an eager reply from Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (or one of his staff members…)

Why Its Hot?

From AOC cooking mac and cheese and shooting IG stories of her freshman year in congress, to Liz Warren cracking beers on Instagram Live, pols are looking for ways to connect and be more human using social media. More progressive ideas are becoming popular because the language is more accessible.

 

Twitter Gets You Out Of Your Bubble – By Telling You Your Friends Like Donald Trump Tweets

This week, Twitter platform users reported that usually liberal friends and followers were liking tweets from Donald Trump and other right wing politicians.

A representative from Twitter has responded:

“[What’s] happening is when someone Likes and then unlikes a Tweet it could appear with the social proof ‘Liked by’. So these people did indeed like these Tweets at some point but then unliked them.”

Some users have been skeptical to the response, noting Twitter founder Jack Dorsey’s comment as well as reticence to expel right wing conspiracy theorist Alex Jones from the platform.

Why it’s hot?

A lack of transparency among platforms, about advertisers in politics and now about the algorithm is leading to mistrust among users. How might that affect us as advertisers looking to protect brand safety?

Snapchat and Adidas Snap Only Shoe Sells out in 6 Hrs

Snapchat and Adidas put together a winning partnership. Adidas sold a new pair of shoes exclusively on the social media platform. By nailing the demographic exactly right (70 percent of consumers were 13 to 24-year-old women), they were able to sell out the new shoe in 6 hours (in Adidas defense, the last iteration of this shoe sold out in 24).

There was a direct e-com in app purchasing that allowed sales to be seamless. This was a great way to get the word out and the shoe out to influential people online before the wide release of the shoe.

Why it’s hot?

Adidas acknowledges the high value of a Snapchat audience, not just at CPC or ROI. These are people who are more likely to share their purchases and therefore provide added value.

Facebook Fails at Keeping Your Data Safe

After the Cambridge Analytica scandal we would have thought Facebook would have been more diligent about data protection.

Per their own new bug bounty solution, Facebook found an opening that let many malicious actors (their words) request information from their system. But this new bug didn’t get closed up for over a month.

The hacker who found the leak, Inti De Ceukelaire says he began his search by “noting down what third party apps his Facebook friends were using — finding quizzes were one of the most popular apps.” He inferred quizzes rep for being an easy and shady sourve of data. “So he took his first ever Facebook quiz, from a brand called NameTests.com, and quickly realized the company was exposing Facebook users’ data to “any third-party that requested it”.”

It’s JavaScript was leaking data and gave users a pin to access any data on an individual they wanted in the future. “Depending on what quizzes you took, the javascript could leak your facebook ID, first name, last name, language, gender, date of birth, profile picture, cover photo, currency, devices you use, when your information was last updated, your posts and statuses, your photos and your friends,” wrote De Ceukelaire.

Why it’s hot?

As Facebooks marketing tries to preach more transparency, are they really practicing?

Alexa Secretly Records a Family’s Conversation and Sends it to a Random Contact… fun!

Amazon’s Echo just wants to be part of the conversation. In the case of one Portland family, it sent that conversation to a random contact. The family was told about the incident when the colleague reached out to them.

Amazon, when asked to comment said that it was a misinterpretation of the family’s words.

Echo woke up due to a word in background conversation sounding like “Alexa.” Then, the subsequent conversation was heard as a “send message” request. At which point, Alexa said out loud “To whom?” At which point, the background conversation was interpreted as a name in the customers contact list. Alexa then asked out loud, “[contact name], right?” Alexa then interpreted background conversation as “right”. As unlikely as this string of events is, we are evaluating options to make this case even less likely.

Why it’s hot

As voice recognition becomes more prominent in our lives we may see more of these incidents. If Alexa is sending a private conversation, then what is the Echo listening to. As data collection grows, we have to wonder what restraints businesses are putting on themselves. Here’s Sillicon Valleys US House Rep talking about an internet bill of rights.

Source: https://www.cnbc.com/2018/05/24/amazon-echo-recorded-conversation-sent-to-random-person-report.html

Sometimes the Internet Can Be Used for Good

Last week and NYC lawyer went viral for threatening to call ICE on employees of a restaurant who were speaking to a customer in Spanish. This viral video helped people on the internet discover his real identity

It turns out this isn’t even a new move for Schlossberg. He’s confronted people all over NYC. Including YouTube star Willie Morris. This 2016 video has now been updated with Schlossberg’s real name.

But sometimes the internet works for good. Schlossberg was identified and DRAGGED. There are now gofundme campagins to send mariachi bands to his law firm, a facebook event organized lati party for outside his building and …

Maybe this wouldn’t have happened anywhere outside of NYC, but it’s interesting to see private citizens get shamed for anti immigrant sentiment in the same week as Donald Trumps “animals” comments.

Why it’s hot?

The dress, yanny/laurel, loose llamas and Aaron Schlossberg. Sometimes the internet can be a great place.

When I Tried To find a Locksmith

I was recently having trouble with my front door, neither here nor there, I wasn’t locked out, but I couldn’t lock my door in the morning.

It turns out finding a locksmith is the hardest thing to do in New York City. “Why don’t you just Google it?” you might ask. Because Googling locksmiths is rife with fraud.

“The goal of lead gens is to wrest as much money as possible from every customer, according to lawsuits. The typical approach is for a phone representative to offer an estimate in the range of $35 to $90. On site, the subcontractor demands three or four times that sum, often claiming that the work was more complicated than expected. Most consumers simply blanch and pay up, in part because they are eager to get into their homes or cars.”

Scammers would go as far as adding fake “offices” into google maps so you can’t even use mapping to research. I wound up getting a referral, but I thought about going to a nearby locksmith in person to triple check they were real.

This is not new, the first reports of this problem are from 2011. Maybe you already know about it. So my question is, if this problem is an old problem why are you posting about it. Well, because it’s 2018 and its only just being fixed. In fact google was sued about it just last month.

Google has been sued time and time again.. and the good news is, they’re finally fixing the problem. Enter Google Guaranteed (October of this year).

Image result for google locksmith guarantee

Ok, Lisa this is all old news! But it isn’t old news for my locksmith, Nick, who has  the arduous task of applying to be google guaranteed. Apparently this is a months long process that has some expenses involved. This can be hard for someone trying to start a small business, like Nick.

Why Its Hot?

What happens to businesses if you’re not Googles priority?

“Defendants knowingly and deliberately flood organic search results displayed in response to queries such as “locksmith” (and related terms) with scam locksmith listings they know: 1) do not exist at all, or at least not at the locations indicated, 2) operate for the purpose of defrauding the consumer public, 3) are not licensed in jurisdictions mandating locksmith licensing, 4) are unregistered to do business in jurisdictions (such as DC) requiring business registration.

Defendants flood the market with fictitious listings to dilute Plaintiffs’ and other legitimate locksmiths’ listing in the organic and map results to the point of obscurity, thereby compelling legitimate locksmiths to pay Defendants for paid advertised results merely to be seen by the same prospective customers.”

Google made money off of locksmiths “problem” by creating artificial demand for their ads.

If you’re interested in hearing more about the real life heros spotting locksmith bots check out this article from the NYT. https://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/31/business/fake-online-locksmiths-may-be-out-to-pick-your-pocket-too.html