Hey there, Internet person about to click "post" -- did you know that just because you're extremely passionate about a cause, it doesn't mean it can't be, well, super dumb? After all, even your uncle who thinks Barack Obama is a crab-monster from Alpha Centauri is convinced he's on the side of righteousness. Luckily, we've put together a short questionnaire to help you figure out where your post stands. It shouldn't take much time!
Question 1: Does Your Cause Require an Elaborate Conspiracy Theory to Be True?
If you answered yes, it's probably bullshit.
For instance, let's say there's a movement called #GamerGate, about irate gamers protesting the lack of ethics in gaming journalism. OK, sounds like a good, simple cause. Now, let's say the specific ethical breach that enraged them is about a feminist indie game designer who a bunch of gamers already hated supposedly gaining control of the gaming media through her vagina -- all of this based on the conjectures of a guy on YouTube who also seems to think government scientists are involved. As in, apparently there's a secret DARPA project to brainwash gamers into, uh, being more tolerant of women. The bastards.
All that's missing is a nonsensical insert of Ron P- wait, no, there he is.
The latest thrilling launch in Apple's line of products you can't actually use unless you own their other products is a sexy new smartwatch. The Internet's still busy debating whether this is the flop that will finally signal Apple's downfall or a golden monorail to a bold new tech era.
We don't want any part in that debate. But we have noticed something weird: so far, the Apple Watch seems tailor-made for old people.
#4. Old People Love Wearing Gadgets
Some of you saw Apple's watch and immediately wondered, "Who the hell buys watches anymore?" Right now it's basically three groups of people: James Bond, those middle-aged men who fancy looking like a potbellied him, and people old enough to remember when folks wore watches.
Tribune Media Services
Smartwatches are your grandparents' hoverboards.
You're probably aware of what Christian Mingle is and what it's about. But if somehow you haven't seen one of their cloying TV commercials, it's a dating site. And it's aimed at a specific demographic: devout Christians who are looking for a personal relationship with someone other than Jesus for awhile, with maybe a little light snake-handling on the side.
At any rate, Christian Mingle happens to also be the name of a movie that's coming out in October, and director Corbin Bernsen (yes, that Corbin Bernsen) insists that the movie is "not an ad or paid promotional piece for the dating website." But as far as we can tell, hoo boy, is that a load of bullshit. As much as Arnie Becker would like to deny the fact that this movie is one long commercial for a site that helps religious people thump one another instead of their Bibles, let's take a look at why that just might be exactly what it is.
#4. It's You've Got Mail, Only More In-Your-Face and Stupid
The 1998 movie You've Got Mail also had a title that was clearly a direct reference to an existing product: the now-quaint inbox voice alert from AOL. Sure, it was a blatant tie-in, and though there was definitely an outside corporate influence on the film, nobody left the theater feeling like they were duped. Even if it was one of the more obvious examples of brand placement at the time, AOL executives weren't exactly there in the theater singing the praises of Netscape and flinging discs out into the audience (like they did with the nation's mailboxes). The association was there, but everyone involved pretty much kept their mouths shut about it. But Christian Mingle, from all appearances, lays their message on thick.
Home Theater Films
"And lo, the Lord did say unto his flock, that to mingle is divine,
and those that mingle shall surely enter into the kingdom of Heaven."
Summer blockbusters have officially begun an agonizingly visible decline into bittersweet oblivion, like the Terminator giving a thumbs-up while being slowly dipped into a cauldron of boiling steel. Summer 2014 saw the most dismal box office turnout in eight years, which included the worst 4th of July weekend since 1987 both in terms of gross receipts and comedic remakes of old cop shows.
Universal Studios, Columbia Pictures
Pictured: 1987 (left), 2014 (right)