Calming Adrien Mauduit Timelapse


Still reeling from forced WordPress block editor assault, I need to calm down. What better way than Milky Way timelapse by Adrien Mauduit at Night Lights Films?

Take a deep breath Notes, you’ll figure this out. So what if adding a “classic editor” plugin requires upgrading to a $33 monthly business plan? Nice try WordPress, who do you think you are? Has WordPress forgotten millions of users like myself? Think users thirst for layers of bloated navigation? Fancy itself a social media influencer? Is nothing sacred? Nothing spared pressure to monetarize, distribute click bait or promote private enterprise for personal gain?

Milky Way timelapse represents hope. Hope I figured out how to post a video using block editor, hope I’ll learn intricacies of WordPress Gutenberg block editor and hope WordPress doesn’t forget what made it special.

15% Pledge


Aurora James, founder of “sustainable retail” store Brother Vellies in Brooklyn, New York launched the Fifteen Percent Pledge on May 31, 2020. A “You asked how you can help. This is your opportunity.” social media campaign aimed at large market share retailers in America. The likes of Whole Foods, Home Depot, Target, Saks Fifth Avenue, Barnes and Noble. In total, calling on ten mega retailers to rethink business strategies and marketing to include 15% of shelf space allotted to black owned enterprises. Why 15%? Approximately 15% of U.S. citizens are black. All ten declined,  preferring to focus on their own “racial diversity measures.”

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https://www.15percentpledge.org/pledge

Fifteen percent pledge momentum blossomed without help from corporate behemoths. In June Sephora stood in line, followed by Vogue magazine and countless online fashion, health and wellness retailers. Make no mistake, fifteen percent is building steam. Fair enough, but am I the only one who sees misplaced red flags?

Fact – racism is rampant, black Americans are twice as likely to contract coronavirus than their white neighbors, 40% of businesses closed due to COVID-19 were owned by black Americans, compared to 32% Latino and 16% white businesses. Awareness, dialogue, equality are fine and dandy, but it’s a slippery slope when these initiatives serve as feel good substitutes for fundamental change.

The fifteen percent pledge is a band aid. White participants mean well, they’re pleased with themselves, subscribe to social media trends of the moment. Fifteen percent pledges are a marketing banner. Sales spike with every law enforcement murder of a black citizen, fall when protest subsides. Sure, a handful of black entrepreneurs might benefit in the short term, but how does that combat racism?

Blacks don’t want fifteen percent pledges, they want equal rights. They want equal opportunity based on merit, not skin tone. Those with red hair, freckled white skin and green eyes are no different from persons with tightly curled locks and dark pigmentation. Latino or South Asian citizens aren’t privy to fifteen percent pledge initiatives, so why blacks? Why not aboriginal citizens or non-Christian immigrants? Sigh.

 

Priorities USA


Watch this ad (it’s only 30 seconds) produced by Priorities USA, largest Democratic PAC (political action committee), translation high value donor acquisitions in support of electing a Democratic president. By law, Priorities USA is legally prohibited from coordinating with candidates on their campaigns. As are Republican PACs Lincoln Project, America FIRST and so on. Political action committees can’t contribute money directly to politicians, what they can do is spend untold millions on advertising. We’ve all seen their ads, blah, blah, blah “paid for by” this, that or the other brand of concerned citizens.

Lead MSNBC story on Rachel Maddow tonight featured controversy surrounding this ad. According to Maddow it was the first of its kind to air on TV way back in March, airing predominantly in swing states – Florida, Michigan, Minnesota, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin.

 

 

Trump blew his comb-over, threatening to sue any television station airing the ad. Trouble is, State law in all but Wisconsin levy penalties and court costs against parties who waste court time, be it frivolous, harassment, for personal gain or plain old nonsense. What’s a Trump to do? Sue a tiny independent station in northern Wisconsin, duh! That’ll teach media not to mess with Trump. Sweet mercy, what a fool. Priorities USA immediately countered with deep pocket expansion of air time specific to this ad.

Here’s the thing, why splice together out of context Trump-bites for dramatic effect? What’s the point of giving Trump media attention when he calls bullshit on the above? Why create content where sites like PolitiFact (linked below) can shred it to pieces with “well yes, he said that but at different times and context”? All it does is piss him off. It’s like tossing an arsonist stranded in torrential rain with five gallons of gasoline, waterproof matches.

Trump is incompetent enough without giving him reason to toss a fit. There’s more than enough Trumpish zingers to go around without resorting to spliced jibber-jabber. Priorities USA, time for you and your kind to smarten up. Let Republican super PACs play dirty, all Democrats have to do is air unadulterated content. It’s not as if Trump absurdity is hard to find.

https://www.politifact.com/article/2020/mar/27/ad-watch-priorities-usa-trumps-coronavirus-respons/

In closing, acting like a four year old is not presidential Mr. Trump.

Incel Terrorism


Incel stands for involuntarily celibate, hash-tag/moniker of a profoundly misogynistic online community united by feelings of sexual rejection. Long simmering Incel hatred of women took root years ago in shadowy forums and alt-right chatter hubs. Amid a plethora of mass shootings and violent crime the Incel movement went largely unnoticed until now. Today, Canada elevated Incel aggression to criminal act of terrorism.

In February 2020 a 17 year old machete wielding male entered a Toronto massage parlour, killing Ashley Noelle Arzaga, seriously wounding two more women. Ontario police arrested the suspect on site, initially charging him with first degree murder and two counts of attempted murder. Further investigation brought in the RCMP Integrated National Security Enforcement Team when evidence indicated the attack was motivated by Incel ideology. On May 19, 2020 RCMP updated charges to, “murder – terrorist activity.”

Incels favour “Chad” and “Stacey” as namesakes for hate and envy.  Chad men are attractive but intellectually flawed, Stacy are women who reject incels for Chads. Don’t scoff, this is deeply messed up psychology.  Serious enough for Canada to lay terrorism charges against a young man attacking women at a Toronto massage parlour.

Incel motivated violence against women isn’t new. The link below illustrates numerous atrocities directed at women by awkward inductees of this murky online movement. What’s new, dare I say historical is Canada’s interpretation of the offence.

Ours is not a Chad and Stacy world. Ours is a online world where Chad and Stacy loathing involuntary celibates bloom in basement solidarity. Right, wrong or knee jerk Canadian perspective, as of May 19, 2020 intel motivated violence is an act of terrorism in Canada.

What is the ‘incel’ movement that police allege inspired a terrorist attack at Toronto massage parlour?

Blocked


Americans in particular are quick to froth constitutional freedom of speech. Trouble being it’s become increasingly evident they only want to hear themselves or their miniscule gang of devotees speak. In the past week I’ve had comments deleted, access blocked and content reported over a dozen times. My transgression? To dare contradict, however polite or reasonable the manifesto of opinionated closed minds. Geez, what was I thinking?

It’s alarming, consider the magnitude of free speech silenced by the click of a block icon.  Reasonable attempts to initiate dialogue muzzled by knee jerk block bravado. Typically I’m chastised for ignorance. Ridiculed, mocked, sworn at or warned to mind my own business before the block hammer strikes. WTF? It’s fascinating. These are the same people who spew constitutional freedom of speech. Silly me, free speech is their right, anyone taking exception will be blocked.

Not once have I blocked a site. Last week I reported a particularly venomous wing-nut for promoting home remedy coronavirus cures, a first in 8 years of blogging. In my mind deleting comments, censoring content, including dialogue out of context excluding verbal abuse prompting such dialogue and aggressively blocking those who dare take issue is cowardly. Blocking doesn’t prove anything other than spineless ignorance. We can ignore content, mark it as spam, read it for perspective or choose not to follow the author, but the moment we block it is the moment we surrender the right to free speech.

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Goop Dupe


If Karma is a bitch, she has one heck of a slap waiting for Gwyneth Paltrow. Next in line are the Fembots marching catatonically to her pop-up goop circus (June 7 – September 22, 2019 ) at the Hazelton Hotel in downtown Toronto. Who am I kidding, goopsters can’t march, they have jade eggs clenched in their vaginas to regulate menstrual cycles and harness the power of energy, stickers made of the same carbon NASA uses in spacesuits, plastered on their bodies to promote healing. (Never mind that NASA doesn’t use carbon in spacesuits, and that’s the least offensive contradiction ).

Health Canada inspectors wary of Paltrow’s goop dupe were no match for the queen of lifestyle sorcery. Despite their unannounced inspection, two sunscreen products not approved for sale in Canada were all they could deny drooling wellness devotees. Fear not goopbots, unapproved goop is available online and there’s nothing Health Canada can do to stop it.

Gwyneth is a quack who believes a bee sting heals scars. Her lifestyle brand is snake oil. Muster some self respect people! Goop is a dupe!

 

Pondering Social Media


The average attention span of a goldfish is 9 seconds. In 2000 social media analytics credited humanity with a 12 second attention span, in 2013 that average fell to 8 seconds. Scoff if you like, but I tend to believe statistics culled by social media marketers.

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Ponder this from https://www.disruptiveadvertising.com/social-media/be-in-the-know-2018-social-media-statistics-you-should-know/

  • Close to half the world’s population (3.03 billion people) are on some type of social media.
  • 64% of online shoppers say that a video on social media helped them decide on a product to buy.
  • Only 43% of online stores receive significant traffic from their social media pages.
  • Acknowledgment is key: 77% of Twitter users appreciate a brand more when their tweet is responded to. It takes about 10 hours on average for businesses to respond to a tweet, even though customers want a response within four hours.
  • Content marketing is a top priority of B2B businesses after brand building and social media engagement.
  • 59% of adults between 18 and 29 are using Instagram.
  • The average person spends about 20 minutes on Facebook or one in every six minutes a person will spend online.
  • 1.57 billion YouTube users watch about 5 billion videos on average every single day. Of the 2.1 billion total accounts on Facebook, 270 million profiles are fake.
  • 86% of women will look at social media before deciding to make a purchase.
  • People are accessing 69% of their media on their smartphones.
  • 89% of people on smartphones are using apps, while only 11% are using standard websites. Unsurprisingly, Facebook is the most popular app at 19% (measured by time spent).
  • Pinterest is number one for mobile social media, with 64% of referral traffic being driven by smartphones and tablets.
  • 57% of all mobile users will not recommend a business if their mobile website is poorly designed or unresponsive.
  • 40% of all mobile users are searching for a local business or interest.
  • Mobile websites that load in 5 seconds or less will end in a viewing session that’s 70% longer than their slower counterparts.
  • 92% of American teens accessed the internet on a daily basis, where 56% claim to connect several times a day, and 24% are connected almost constantly to the internet.

Lets talk selfies, next to tediously boring photos of mealtime “nobody cares what you had for dinner” fluff, selfies are a blight more annoying than hot sidewalk gum stuck to the bottom of your shoe. Stalwart aversion to catatonic postings of selfies on social media and subsequent refusal to validate self centered media content with likes, solidifies my place as a middle aged dinosaur. Every week over 20 million selfie posts are immortalized on social media, who am I to bemoan the erosion of civilization?

Social media is a business. It knows precisely how vain, inattentive, malleable, financially sound, politically inclined and impulsive every last one of us is. It knows who we are, where we are, what we eat, where we shop, how we vote, our views on abortion, gay rights and immigration. Prospective employers, financial institutions, property management companies and law enforcement routinely scrutinize social media footprints.

Valuable as it is intrusive, pondering social media asks only that we understand how it works, personal footprints we leave behind and magnitude of this marketing tool.

Yanny or Laurel?


This post is SO STUPID. That said, watch before reading another word-

Started the vehicle to make my way home from work. CBC Radio filled the air, first thing I heard was “Laurel”. Drove off without a second thought. Radio announcer said “we’ll play it one more time. What do you hear, Yanny or Laurel?” Yanny? Are you nuts? What’s wrong with you people and why does it matter to CBC?

Apparently “Yanny or Laurel” deserves mention for trending above all other social media froth. For the next five minutes, rush hour traffic stuttered belligerently to the cadence of Yanny or Laurel uncertainty. Blah, blah, blah. Half the newsroom heard Yanny, the other Laurel. I wanted to scream “nobody cares!” Pretty sure I flipped off the nincompoop who cut in front of me. I need a vacation. Sigh.