Children Taken From Maryland Couple After YouTube ‘Prank’ Videos

Excerpt from this article:

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.

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YouTube: More Millennial Dads Watch Parenting Videos Than Millennial Moms

youtube-millennial-dads

Excerpt from this article:

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

Excerpt from this article:

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

Excerpt from this article:

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.

 

The Sex-Ed Queens of YouTube Don’t Need a Ph.D.

Excerpt from this article:

This is Laci Green, the sex-ed queen of YouTube. Since posting her first video from her dorm room in 2008 (it was a review of her NuvaRing), her videos have been viewed a combined 131 million times. She’s building a digital empire around what she calls “sex ed for the internet,” and she’s leading a new generation of amateur sexperts along with her. They earn money from college speaking engagements; ads on YouTube; and by sponsoring products like Durex condoms and the period-tracker app Clue.

And traditional media companies, like Viacom and Univision, are getting in on the action, too, snapping up online sex-ed personalities and releasing their own pop-sexual content.

For young people raised with abstinence-only education in school and unfettered pornography online, these internet sex gurus offer a third option — access to other young people who feel comfortable talking about sex. This is sex ed by and for internet natives: It is personal, energetic, unfiltered and not entirely fact-checked.

 

The Strange Story of Cisco’s (Sort of) Beloved Hold Music

Excerpt from this article (which I sought out after re-listening to The American Life’s podcast episode about this music – – it’s really good!):

You probably hate it. I mostly do. At three minutes, there is this horrifying funky Michael Bolton breakdown played on a xylophone synth… But some people love it!

And if you leave it on in the background while you’re working, just sitting in a tab, and then you turn it off, you may notice a curious absence. Perhaps this tune is better than silence. If you can hear this song, you are still alive.

People record this music, post it to YouTube, and people like Corbett’s father-in-law discover it and put it on in the background while they sweep the kitchen.