The Rise in Self-Proclaimed Time Travelers

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This spacetime cowboy’s story went viral for obvious reasons. But then, following Johnson’s story, there’s been an unexpected surge of time-travelers. In fact, every week, British tabloids and news aggregators like Drudge Report seemingly push weird news stories about some guy who claims to be from a decade or more in the future. YouTube is chock-full of interviews with these purported time travelers as well. In the typical confession vid, the time traveler speaks directly to the camera and nervously explains why he’s come back in time to save us from the future. The time traveler knows he won’t be believed. He also fears for his safety. But he has to come forward with the truth. Most of the time his face is blurred and his voice distorted. He’s always white.

Like other con men and bullshit artists, these time travelers recognize the public’s need for proof. Some admit they can never convince us… Conveniently, though, their proof of future events is never a prediction of what will happen next week, or later in the month. It’s always a matter of waiting a few years. And then, you’ll see.

You’ll all see!

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The Lonely Life of a Professional YouTuber

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Above the desk in Will’s bedroom in London there is a whiteboard listing all of the ambitions he had for 2017, with a huge black tick pasted across it. He wanted to get verified on Twitter (he still isn’t), he wanted to begin an intensive daily gym workout routine (he didn’t). But right at the top of the list, written in red marker pen, is “1 million subscribers”.

He spent every waking hour trying to make it happen, working 16-hour days in a state of miserable obsession. He achieved it just after 1.30AM on the 22nd of December, 2017, and tweeted: “WE DID IT! From the bottom of my heart – thank you. Never wanted something as much as I wanted this. Love the lot of you to fkn bits,” followed by a heart emoji. But the feeling disappeared within minutes. Then he re-opened Adobe Premiere Pro and got back to work. He had another video to upload in 48 hours, and it was already making him anxious.

He’s never really stopped since. He was up until 4.30AM this morning working on a video, and then he got up at 8AM to work some more before I arrived. He has bags under his eyes. His sleeping patterns blur. He pulls all-nighters to finish videos, and doesn’t really know how much it has affected him until he’s lying awake at 5.30AM two days later. In the winter, there were days when he only saw two hours of daylight. His flatmate is away a lot, and the most face-to-face contact he has during the week is with the woman who works in the coffee shop downstairs.

“Is that a joke, though?” I laugh. I want to give him the opportunity to tell me that was an exaggeration.

“No, I’m deadly serious. I’d consider her one of my better mates,” says Will.

 

Children Taken From Maryland Couple After YouTube ‘Prank’ Videos

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A Maryland couple who played elaborate “pranks” on their children, then racked up millions of views on YouTube before critics accused them of abuse, could end up losing two of their children after their biological mother obtained a court order for temporary custody.

…The parents first defended the videos, posted on the DaddyOFive account with more than 760,000 subscribers, as a harmless family activity that the children enjoyed, but they have gone on an apology tour after widespread criticism emerged in April. In the videos, the couple verbally berated their five school-age children, frequently to the point of tears, while performing stunts like appearing to destroy an Xbox video game system and accusing the children of making messes they had not made.

YouTube: More Millennial Dads Watch Parenting Videos Than Millennial Moms

youtube-millennial-dads

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During a panel at the South By Southwest multimedia conference in Austin this week, YouTube shared that more millennial dads watch parenting-related videos on its platform than millennial moms. And in a study conducted alongside research outfits Flamingo and Ipsos Connect, the video giant shared several other findings about millennial parents.

Forty percent of millennials are parents today, for instance, and they tend to have more open relationships with their children than past generations, CNBC reports — with 80% of survey respondents saying that their child is one of their best friends, and 75% saying that their child is involved in household decisions.

With Hair Bows and Chores, YouTube Youth Take On Mean Girls

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Thirteen-year-old girls aren’t generally known for their oversize bows these days, but JoJo isn’t your typical teenager. She just signed a multiplatform deal with Nickelodeon, which includes consumer products, original programming, social media, live events and music.

Shauna Pomerantz, a sociology professor at Brock University in Ontario and an author of “Smart Girls: Success, School and the Myth of Post-Feminism,” said school administrators had historically policed girls for wearing skirts that were too short or having exposed bra straps, not for an accessory reminiscent of the 1950s. “JoJo stands for being nice,” she said. “And the bow is a representation of JoJo. Ultimately the goal of that video is to suggest that meanness isn’t cool, and niceness is cool.”

In a world where parents of children ages 8 to 14 have long been concerned about hypersexualized clothing, early puberty and overly sophisticated media messages, JoJo is part of a growing group of girls documenting routine, age-appropriate behaviors and activities such as being nice, doing their chores, divulging what’s in their backpacks, making dresses out of garbage bags and working to pay for their own clothes.

Judy Blume used to teach young people about the world, now it’s YouTube

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Am I normal? It’s a question everyone asks at some point in their life, most urgently during adolescence. When will I get my period? Will I grow facial hair? Why do my parents argue? Can you get pregnant in a hot tub?

Bringing these questions to your mom hardly ever feels natural. Our parents got answers from scout troops, Sunday school, advice columns, Sassy magazine, and friends’ older siblings. But since 1970, one of the most influential sources was author Judy Blume…

In summer 2015, YouTube announced its users uploaded 400 minutes of video every minute, or over 1,000 days per month. Today, young people are watching more YouTube than television. But they aren’t simply catching PewDiePie’s latest vlog. They’re using the platform to seek answers in much the same way their parents once turned to Judy Blume for advice on itchy private parts. When children don’t get adequate answers to that age-old question — “Am I normal?” — they turn to YouTube for help. The video-sharing website offers a package complete with role models, entertainers, educators, and hopefully, other kids just like them.

 

Those Lips! Those Eyes! That Stubble! The Transformative Power of Men in Makeup

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My favorite person on Instagram these days is a guy who matches his makeup to his snacks.

…Watching Skelotim at work is mesmerizing. He slickly sets his makeup routine to pounding pop music, transforming from a regular dude into a sparkling vision of the fabulously strange. It’s just like Cinderella twirling around and around until she finds herself wearing a poufy blue ball gown, except Skelotim is changing into a Flamin’ Hot Cheeto. In the age of the selfie, what more appropriate canvas is there for an internet artist than his own face?

Skelotim is one of a handful of young men who have primped and preened their way into the female-centric world of Instagram and YouTube makeup artistry.