Another meme: 28 questions

May 1, 2008 at 11:53 am | Posted in Blogging | 6 Comments
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Lallopallo has tagged me – to maintain our blog friendship, I’ll have to answer his 28 questions (btw, I know that this type of pass-on questions is also referred to as a meme, but is it a meme really? dunno, don’t think so – doesn’t matter).

Here we go (I might choose not to answer if I consider a question to personal):

1. Last movie you saw in a theater?

Gerbert Rappaport’s Čeremuški or Черемушки (a Russian operetta from 1962)

2. What book are you reading?

A reader ‘Old media, new media’ and Weinberger’s Everything is miscellaneous (sporadically)

3. Favorite board game?

Scrabble

4. Favorite magazine?

They all suck.

5. Favorite smells?

The smell of whitewashed walls.

6. Favorite sounds?

Changes. Cute sounds, such as a new message coming in via twhirl

7. Worst feeling in the world?

That people who one loves will be gone forever when they die

Continue Reading Another meme: 28 questions…

We’ve Got a Meme: The Dramatic Animal

February 9, 2008 at 4:53 pm | Posted in video, Viral | 3 Comments
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One of my favourite web micro-narratives – the ‘Dramatic Look‘, which generated a few remixes, but not a real meme – is now on the verge of evolving: Enter ‘Dramatic Lemur‘ (watch with sound only).

UPDATE: The meme is gaining momentum – her is the Dramatic Prairie Cat (not as funny, but…) EDIT: That’s the tough thing about memes: The first time you see them they come across as soooo fresh and then you realize the Prairy Cat is more than half a year old. Need to think about the redefinition of ‘NEWS’ that this implies…

Tagged! The Nosy “Tell Me Your Routine” Meme

November 13, 2007 at 8:04 am | Posted in Meme | 2 Comments
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Lallopallo tagged me – but the questions are a tad personal, so I might decide to lie where appropriate;-) Also there are soooo many of them….

1. Name one person who made you laugh last night?
My boyfriend.

2. What were you doing at 0800?
It is three minutes to 8am, and I am drinking tea und writing THIS.

3. What were you doing 30 minutes ago?
Sleeping.

8. What was the last thing you paid for?
A potato strudel and a spinach strudel.

13. What’s the best ice-cream flavor?
Yoghurt.

30. What was the last thing you ate?
Potato and spinach Strudel.

36. Did you cry today?
No, I didn’t.

37. Why did you answer and post this?
Because I am polite person and Lallopallo tagged me – but the person who invented this meme really did the worst job ever. Most questions were too stupid to be answered or just not anyone’s business – so the few ones you find here are the ones I still felt like answering.

38. Tag 5 people who would do this survey.
Hell I will! I am a polite person.

The oldest meme on the web: The Hitler Cat

May 21, 2007 at 4:52 pm | Posted in Blogging, Internet, Lolcats, Marketing, Meme, Viral | 4 Comments
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Just because Jetsam brought up the subject of cats that look like Hitler: Here it is once more (for the first time on this blog) – the essence of a Kitler, a cat that looks like Hitler:

Kitler Hitler Cat

More Kitlers on www.catsthatlooklikehitler.com – although the site’s rather an example of why web 2.0 can only go wrong if it’s done with a web 1.0 mindset: The supposed top ten kitlers hardly look like Hitler at all, but they owners probably were the most relentless ones when it came to hitting the ‘vote’ button.

And this my own post contains a deliberate lie: The Kitler is definitely not the oldest meme or virus on the web. The oldest in the cat department is the Bonsai kitten (btw, what’s the thing with cats and the web anyway?***), and the oldest meme on the web that I know is the good old “End of the Internet”. Does anybody know anything older than that?

***) Check this out! The tags most closely related to ‘meme’ on wordpress are:
* Blogging
* Humor
* Life
* Cats
* Entertainment
* LOLCats
* Personal
* Thoughts
* humour
* Blog

WTF?

I think we’ve got a meme 17/40

March 9, 2007 at 1:45 pm | Posted in Culture, Entertainment, Film, Meme | Leave a comment
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My blog stats told me today that ‘Borat naked’ has apparently become a meme on the web:

Searchterms

In the words of Wikipedia (which in itself is a collection of memetic knowledge) a meme is

a unit of cultural information transferable from one mind to another. Dawkins said, Examples of memes are tunes, catch-phrases, beliefs, clothes fashions, ways of making pots or of building arches. A meme propagates itself as a unit of cultural evolution and diffusion — analogous in many ways to the behavior of the gene (the unit of genetic information). Often memes propagate as more-or-less integrated cooperative sets or groups, referred to as memeplexes or meme-complexes.

If have hence now included the naked Borat footage, courtesy by youtube, into the post that curiously attracted the attention in the past: a post about about a visit to an artfair where a ‘naked little dead man’ was exhibited as a sculpture. Johnny Malmedy had commented on this, pretending to be Borat, hence establishing the link that I couldn’t explain at first. I even put up a Quick guide to Borat, assuming it was just general interest in the character Borat. But it’s the naked Borat they want:-)

If you haven’t watched Borat, here is the footage another time:

I think what this memeplexe is about is

  1. the outrageousness of the imperfect, naked body (the perfect body, in that sense, is not naked, not conspicuous enough to be naked)
  2. the outrageousness of the naked, hairy body (more specifically defining the nature of imperfection)
  3. the outrageousness of the naked, hairy, fat body (doubly marginalized)

Haven’t we all wondered in the past if the penis of a really fat man isn’t probably covered by body fat to an extent that it is not even visible anymore? Now we know: Fat men don’t have visible penises. On that note: Enjoy!

No Lent note today. I’ve given that up for Lent:-)

My First Slideshare: The Semantics of Cute

March 20, 2008 at 8:39 am | Posted in conference, Cute | Leave a comment
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Here are my slides from the 21st FFK (Colloquium in Film and Television Studies – media studies more or less subsumed) 2008, where I gave a presentation with a friend on the Semantics of Cute, covering b3ta.com, I Can Has Cheezburger? and video memes like the Dramatic Prairiedog – regrettably, only speakers of German can be treated to the semantics of cute… btw, I just noticed that Slideshare also offers the opportunity to record audio with your slide – I might dabble with that (if only I had more time on my hands…)

Webvideo Explosion Kills the PhD Student

March 2, 2008 at 10:00 am | Posted in PhD, Web 2.0 | 1 Comment
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Sorry for the lame title. I’ve just experienced a rather dull moment of disillusionment..

For my PhD thesis I am currently doing research on web videos in collaborative environments – it’s the narrative and visual layer I am most interested in. One of the things I am currently doing to establish my own body of research is downloading and referencing the Top 10 movies in the Viral Video Chart twice a week; I plan to do this for at least half year. Of course I am aware that this covers only ONE aspect of the narrative strategies at work – there are so many micro-niches on the web 2.0 that it would be silly to assume that a chart of the most popular movies would take you to the heart of things…

Having said that… this morning I signed up for Bebo and felt a sudden pang of despair when I realized the dimensions of the Bebo video universe… it is going to be IMPOSSIBLE to cover each and everything that is going on at the moment, so many things will inevitably elude me. I’d literally have to have my own collaborative platform and invite other researchers to help map the field to do any web 2.0 phenomenon justice… One thing that I am really grateful for is the ROCKETBOOM – Know Your Meme Series – it’s more anecdotal than critical, but at least I don’t have to download each and everything myself now 🙂

Ultra Kawaii

Sigh… even though, I think I’ll be able to use to use some of the things I found this morning for my presentation in Weimar in (arf!) two weeks, which is going to focus on cuteness on the web, e.g. the Ultra Kawaii Channel on Bebo 🙂

CAUTION! Virus on 90-day-Jane?!?

February 13, 2008 at 9:58 pm | Posted in Blogging | 12 Comments
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Folks, be careful! Everyone is rushing to the new 90-day-Jane page, which seemed to replace the first 90dayJane page. BUT: There is an unknown executable program, potentially a virus lurking behind what seems to be the link to Jane’s Dress-for-the-Big-Day video. The first Jane’s original video on Youtube has disappeared – removed by the user. So why should there be a link to it on a new blog?

If you click the you Youtube still image, this is what you get:

Virus on 90-day-Jane

I am on a Mac, so this can’t affect me…. but Windows user beware, no Youtube link would normally launch an exe – which means: virus alert! Could it be that the person hiding behind the new 90-day-jane.blogspot.com is not the same person that launched 90dayjane.blogspot.com – but someone with even worse intentions?

The original Jane had announced to be setting up something new at http://www.90dayjane.com if Blogspot canceled her account. She then canceled it herself, but the redirect from 90dayjane.com to 90dayjane.blogspot.com is still active – which only supports the fact that the new blog, i.e. 90-day-jane.blogspot.com was started by someone else.

I have hence removed all links to the site, if you want to go there you need to type in the URL manually, at you own risk.

Here is a recap of what has happened so far.

Update! We have a meme! Say hello to 90 Day Tania which is a spoof, rather than a fake:-) Also, they’re hosting a virus free copy of the original blog, in case you’d like to have a look at what it was like.

Why 90DayJane is a Fake

February 13, 2008 at 12:01 am | Posted in Blogging | 24 Comments
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Fake Suicide JaneThe Blogosphere is on suicide watch: Someone allegedly called Jane started a blog offering a count-down to her allegedly planned suicide: 90dayjane.blogspot.com. It’s barely a week old, has garnered more than 146,000 hits – and has ‘fake’ written all over it. The profile picture and the cheap wig alone (see right) is enough to sustain this point.

To begin with, the lady doesn’t sound even halfheartedly suicidal – go to places like suicide forum to learn about the nature of thinking of truly suicidal people. Their mind has become a trap, their musings a a vicious circle that over and over offers just one answer: Eliminate yourself. The Jane character isn’t suicidal – she’s just toying with a bit of nihilism. Here’s her little welcome note:

I am going to kill myself in 90 days. What else should i say? This blog is not a cry for help or even to get attention. It’s simply a public record of my last 90 days in existence. I’m not depressed and nothing extremely horrible has lead me to this decision. But, does it really have to? I mean, as an atheist I feel life has no greater purpose. My generation has had no great depression, no great war and our biggest obstacle is beating Halo 3. So, if I feel like saying “game over”, why can’t I? Anyway, I hope you enjoy my thoughts as the clock runs out. Also, if blogspot takes this down before i’m gone just go to http://www.90dayjane.com. Please don’t attempt to “help” me. If you want to truly help, please send me ideas on how to do the deed. thx-Jane

Does this sound suicidal to you? She seems worried that people might not be able to reach her blog if Blogspot/Blogger decide to pull the plug on her – doesn’t seem like she’s ready to say good bye or has objectives any more noble than beating Halo 3. The blog is only 8 days old and already has a sitemeter-button installed?* If you’ve ever maintained a blog yourself you’ll know that the widgets come over time. And instead of asking for suicide advice, she should’ve just checked Wikipedia.
* (unless these come with the blogger template these days)

On day 86 of 90, Jane went “shopping for a dress to wear on the big day”. The footage is fake from beginning to end: The camera movements upon entering the shop do not reflect the movements of a person browsing for clothes. Jane dresses and undresses for the camera (she put on men’s briefs to give it that special raunchy look) and her face always just barely eludes the camera. In the second undressing scene, the light is just right to leave her face in the dark. The final stunt when she films herself in the mirror seems like just a little narrative gadget to give proof that she really filmed herself (and not let a cameraman do it for her) – and the person walking through the picture behind her is all too obvious an attempt to make us think that this was really filmed in a shop during regular opening hours.

Neither was the 90 day period well planned – far too long to keep an online audience on edge (in particular in light of the lack of authenticity in her writing). That’s why I doubt that there’s an agency or company behind this blog (like it was the case with the Bride Wig Out) – it’s probably just a desperate L.A. wannabe-actress seeking to sell her toned body (of which we see enough during all the undressing) to audiences.

The Pre-Valentine’s Day post is finally all too annoying – in spite of her figure and face, they’re trying to make us a believe that the Jane character is “tired of being the sole member of my own Dateless Wonder Club. So, in the spirit of living my remaining life to the fullest, I said yes [to a colleague who had asked her out for Valentine’s Day]. […] I just hope he’s not looking for anything long-term.”

Cut that sh*t out PLEASE. Show some respect for the people who are REALLY on the edge of a suicide.

Update! The page already went offlne – let’s see whether it’s gonna reappear on http://www.90dayjane.com or not.

Update! The page went back online! New address: 90-day-jane.blogspot.com I like the way The Underground Scribe describes
it:

She put back up her Day 0: The Resolve post, but
renumbered, and renamed it to Day 83: The Idea.
She also edited her post from:
“This is why my project, 90DayJane, will be taken down in the next few hours.”
Now reads:
“This is why my project, 90DayJane, will be taken down on day 80.”
It’s obvious that she is not willing to let go of the limelight just
yet.

Update! Folks, be careful! Everyone is rushing to the new 90-day-Jane page, which seemed to replace the first 90dayJane page. BUT: There is an unknown executable program, potentially a virus lurking behind what seems to be the link to Jane’s Dress-for-the-Big-Day video. The first Jane’s original video on Youtube has disappeared – removed by the user. So why should there be a link to it on a new blog?

If you click the you Youtube still image, this is what you get:

Virus on 90-day-Jane

I am on a Mac, so this can’t affect me…. but Windows user beware, no Youtube link would normally launch an exe – which means: virus alert! Could it be that the person hiding behind the new 90-day-jane.blogspot.com is not the same person that launched 90dayjane.blogspot.com – but someone with even worse intentions?

The original Jane had announced to be setting up something new at http://www.90dayjane.com if Blogspot canceled her account. She then canceled it herself, but the redirect from 90dayjane.com to 90dayjane.blogspot.com is still active – which only supports the fact that the new blog, i.e. 90-day-jane.blogspot.com was started by someone else.

I have hence removed all links to the site, if you want to go there you need to type in the URL manually, at you own risk.

Update! We have a meme! Say hello to 90 Day Tania which is a spoof, rather than a fake:-) AND they’re hosting a virus free copy of the original blog, in case you’d like to have a look at what it was about.

Find Chuck Norris NOW!

January 29, 2008 at 11:13 pm | Posted in Fun | Leave a comment
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1. Go to Google.com
2. Type “find Chuck Norris”
3. Click on I’m Feeling Lucky
4. Enjoy!

Btw, is this a meme or a viral? And why is it so quiet on memepool? Had forgotten about the site for five years at least.

Found here.

P.S.: Just nine days left until the beginning of Lent! I’ll have to design a new Lent logo soon.

Knowing Languages Is Bad for Good Laughs

January 28, 2008 at 10:09 pm | Posted in Fun, Language, video | 2 Comments
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On Realpop, I read about the latest “The Downfall” meme: Take the scene from The Downfall in which Hitler/Bruno Ganz learns that Steiner couldn’t gather enough forces to attack and add new subtitles to it, changing The Downfall of Hitler to The Downfall of HDVD or The Downfall of the Cowboys. While Ganz’ acting features the theatrical type of speech that is known from Hitler speeches – and which is on a phonetic level sufficiently close to Chaplin’s idiom as Hynkel in The Great Dictator – it is certainly good material for being subtitled. Too bad though that the trick won’t work if you know German: It’ impossible to shut out and not understand the words of your mother tongue:-(

Tagged over and over again! Unread Books

October 9, 2007 at 8:49 am | Posted in Literature | 5 Comments
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Jetsam tagged me, and now I have to go through this list of seemingly 106 books and reveal whether I have read them or not. I have to mark them in the following way:
Bold what you have read, italicize your DNFs (‘did not finish), strikethrough the ones you hated, and put asterisks next to those you read more than once.
I will appear terribly illiterate after doing this, and even more so because I will introduce a new symbol: I’ll put an WTM next to the ones that I watched as movie or TV series.

Jonathan Strange & M. Norrell
Anna Karenina
Crime and Punishment
Catch-22
One Hundred Years of Solitude
Wuthering Heights
The Silmarillion
Life of Pi: a novel
The Name of the Rose WTM
Don Quixote WTM
Moby Dick WTM
Ulysses DNF
Madame Bovary
The Odyssey
Pride and Prejudice WTM
Jane Eyre
A Tale of Two Cities
The Brothers Karamazov
Guns, Germs, and Steel: the fates of human societies
War and Peace
Vanity Fair
The Time Traveller’s Wife
The Iliad
Emma
The Blind Assassin
The Kite Runner
Mrs. Dalloway
Great Expectations
American Gods
A Heartbreaking Work of Staggering Genius
Atlas shrugged
Reading Lolita in Tehran
Memoirs of a Geisha
Middlesex
Quicksilver
Wicked : the life and times of the wicked witch of the West
The Canterbury tales
The Historian
A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Love in the Time of Cholera
Brave New World ***
The Fountainhead
Foucault’s Pendulum
Middlemarch
Frankenstein WTM
The Count of Monte Cristo
Dracula WTM
A Clockwork Orange WTM
Anansi Boys
The Once and Future King
The Grapes of Wrath
The Poisonwood Bible
1984
Angels & Demons
The Inferno
The Satanic Verses
Sense and sensibility
The Picture of Dorian Gray
Mansfield Park
One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest
To the Lighthouse
Tess of the D’Urbervilles
Oliver Twist
Gulliver’s Travels WTM
Les misérables
The Corrections
The Amazing Adventures of Kavalier and Clay
The curious incident of the dog in the night-time
Dune
The Prince
The Sound and the Fury
Angela’s Ashes
The God of Small Things
A people’s history of the United States : 1492-present
Cryptonomicon
Neverwhere
A Confederacy of Dunces
A Short History of Nearly Everything
Dubliners
The unbearable lightness of being
Beloved
Slaughterhouse-Five***
The Scarlet Letter
Eats, Shoots & Leaves
The Mists of Avalon
Oryx and Crake : a novel
Collapse : how societies choose to fail or succeed
Cloud Atlas
The Confusion
Lolita
Persuasion
Northanger Abbey
The Catcher in the Rye
On the Road
The Hunchback of Notre Dame WTM
Freakonomics
Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance
The Aeneid
Watership Down
Gravity’s Rainbow DNF
The Hobbit***
In Cold Blood
White teeth WTM
Treasure Island
David Copperfield
The Three Musketeers

Well, I AM barely literate. But at least I haven’t read Mists of Avalon (unlike all of my female relatives) – it might even be not half as bad, but the cover was so off-putting I didn’t want to be caught reading it.

Mists of Avalon

Downloading porn with Davo (and other free porn)

June 3, 2007 at 4:54 pm | Posted in video | Leave a comment
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“Downloading porn with Davo” originally was an up-tempo song by The Moldy Peaches – many people might know their lead singer Adam Green, who started a solo career as a seemingly drugged and confused singer in 2002. They are considered an antifolk band – something powerfully illustrated by the lyrics of Downloading Porn with Davo:

Downloading porn with Davo
Downloading porn with Davo
Put a latch on the door so Mama don’t know
That I’m downloading porn with Davo

Tried to buy your love but I came up short
So I f**ked a little waitress in exchange for a snort
My girl’s got a dick hanging out of her shorts
Me and Eric in the bathroom with the weather report

Downloading porn with Davo
Downloading porn with Davo
Put a latch on the door so Mama don’t know
That I’m downloading porn with Davo

Friend Lenina boosts her traffic with a post about this song – BUT it seems as if the porn industry has also become aware of this meme: There factually IS a website now called downloadingpornwithdavo.com. It says it is free – I haven’t tried all of it, the pics on the website itself are indeed free.

But honestly, when I am looking for porn, I still trust the TheHun.net best. The design is horrible, and you need to scroll a long way down: It is basically a list of all free teaser pornography from other sites. Just make sure you don’t sign up for anything!

Butchery Galore! 6/40

February 26, 2007 at 8:51 am | Posted in Culture, Food, Lent, Religion | 13 Comments
Tags:

This flickr photoset might meanwhile have become a meme on the web: A sacrifice of 2000 pigs, neatly dressed and decorated, to invoke the complacency of the deity General Chao of Wudeh temple at a temple festival in Jendeh, southern Taiwan, 19 Jan 2007. This is my favourite picture from the set – it makes you wonder whether they do something with the carcasses to make the pigs smile.

Smiling dead pigs

LentA Lenten comment (Day 6): Well, good that I am not eating meat at the moment anyway. This is probably hearsay, but when people begin a conversation about vegetarianism, they tend to discuss the different types of meat at one point. Pork is the one that is dissed most in these conversations (although probably eaten the most in Europe). At that point someone might say: “Biologically, man and pig are very close. They even have the same meat and the same insuline. That’s why diabetics shouldn’t eat pork.” This is ususally greeted with nodding by the rest. It might be utter rubbish, but I believe I have heard this argument at least half a dozen of times.

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