Scoops! Scoops! We got scoops! Hey, you there! You want a scoop, don’t you? Come on… first one’s free, kid…
1. Urban Outfitters 2015 Outrage Collection: In what seems to be an annual event, hipster magnet Urban Outfitters has once again drawn national outrage over another offensive product. This time, it’s a tapestry with a design eerily similar to the uniforms worn by gay prisoners in Nazi death camps. After being called out by the Anti-Defamation League on the insensitive nature of the item, it was pulled from Urban Outfitters’ website. Just like their bloody, “vintage” Kent State sweatshirt… and their “Navajo” line of products… and their seemingly pro-anorexia shirts… and, well, you get the idea.
2. Big Brother Is Watching You Watch Big Brother: Samsung’s new smart TVs feature voice recognition software, eliminating the debilitating stress and strain of pressing all those buttons on your remote control. However, a clause in the policy regarding the technology seemed to imply that all conversations in front of the TV would be recorded and relayed to a third party. After coming under fire for the rather Orwellian wording of the policy, Samsung has reworded it to clarify that they will only record your every single utterance when the voice recognition software is active and receiving information. Just the same, you might want to watch your mouth during your next Real Housewives marathon.
3. Hawaii Stares At The Sun: Ignoring the advice of its worried mother, Hawaii has decided to stare directly into the sun for as long as it wants… through the use of the what is described as the world’s biggest and most revolutionary solar telescope. The $525 million telescope will be built in Maui, its cameras provided by the UK’s University of Sheffield, and is powerful enough to see a coin at 62 miles away. The project aims to better study the sun and accurately gauge the effects of solar activity like solar flares on Earth. No word yet on when Michael Bay will use this as the basis of another Transformers film.
4. Australia Becomes Part Of Europe…Sort Of: For the first time in its 60-year history, the Eurovision Song Contest has invited Australia to compete by instilling their collective national pride into a campy 3-minute disco-ready stage production. While non-European countries routinely compete in the contest — and while Australians have performed in the past as representatives of other countries — this is the first time a country so far outside the European boundaries has been allowed to enter. Last year’s contest made international headlines when it was won by Austria’s Conchita Wurst, a genderqueer drag performer who caused Russia to have what could generously be called a “total conniption fit.”
5. 10! 10 Million Passwords, Ha Ha Ha!: A collection of 10 million hacked, mostly inert passwords and usernames have been published online by a security consultant in the hopes of avoiding prosecution for owning the list in the first place. The seemingly counterintuitive move was performed by Mark Burnett, who hopes that the list will help researchers study the correlation between a person’s username and password and help discover new ways to make passwords more secure. What’s unique about this move is that it was done by a professional in internet security for the purpose of research and not a hacker named “Tr0llz!lla777” doing it for the lulz.
6. Click! Drag! Swipe! Gratuitous Action Word!: Scribd has added unlimited access to over 10,000 comic issues for its monthly subscribers. Titles from Marvel, Archie Comics, Valiant, IDW/Top Shelf, and other publishers will be available, bringing Scribd’s total library of material to over 1 million items. The collection also includes graphic novels and manga, but nothing from DC Comics, so while you can get caught up on Classic Marvel Team-Ups and Archie’s existential dilemmas, there will be no Dark Knight to brighten up your day. Scribd has even added a “binge button”, ensuring that you may never leave your dusty, neglected bedroom ever again.
And here’s something else to make your life easier: a robot that zips up your clothes for you.
(featured image via Senel Olivieri)
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Johnny M Gayzmonic is a writer/geek/snarker/Fanboy of the Universe currently based in the frozen wastes of Minneapolis. He lives with his cats, his PS2, and his longtime companion, Sarcasm. You can follow him on Twitter, Tumblr or his SoundCloud.