All posts tagged: Social media

Why Beyoncé’s ‘Texas Hold ’Em’ Has Taken Over TikTok

Why Beyoncé’s ‘Texas Hold ’Em’ Has Taken Over TikTok

In her delightfully cheeky Verizon Super Bowl commercial, Beyoncé swore to do one thing: Break the internet. As the commercial demonstrated, she could not—at least not in the literal sense. Instead, after the commercial ended, she did something else: She hacked the internet, dropping two new songs, “Texas Hold ’Em” and “16 Carriages,” the former of which is already on its way to becoming TikTok’s viral dance song of the year. This was always going to happen. Pretty much everything Beyoncé does—every album drop, every outfit—goes viral. That’s why her Verizon commercial didn’t look like a shallow attempt to astroturf hype. Moreover, “Texas Hold ’Em” is a big pop-country crossover track, and its rapid banjo riffs (from maestro Rhiannon Giddens) and lyrics about whiskey and taking it to the floor are perfect for line dancing. Line dances, which lend themselves to fun mimicry and interpretation, naturally do well on social platforms. It would have been weirder if TikTok hadn’t been flooded with new dances in the week after the song dropped. (If you’re looking for …

Russia’s opposition died with Navalny – POLITICO

Russia’s opposition died with Navalny – POLITICO

But in a country with a population of 143 million, this hardly amounts to a political awakening or outpouring. No doubt Russian opposition leaders will attribute this to fear — the fear of incurring the wrath of a Kremlin that has ramped up a vicious crackdown on dissent and dissidents, meting out steep jail terms for those rash enough to criticize or object. Shuttering independent news outlets and censoring and blocking social media platforms alongside this repression and intimidation, all of the Kremlin’s efforts have conspired to muffle critical voices and hamper the organization of protests. Certainly, these are all likely factors. So, too, is the flight of possibly as many as 700,000 Russians, escaping Putin, his war and conscription, and subsequently diminishing the opposition — albeit weakening the economy with their absence. But taking all this into account, the sad and disturbing truth is that even without the intimidation and dramatic jump in the number of political prisoners, the absence of any serious mass opposition to Putin inside Russia — let alone to his …

Estonia thwarts Russian hybrid operation, arrests 10  – POLITICO

Estonia thwarts Russian hybrid operation, arrests 10  – POLITICO

State Prosecutor Triinu Olev said 10 people had been arrested, including both Russian nationals and dual Russian-Estonian citizens; six remain in custody. The Russian operation aimed to spread fear and create tension in Estonian society but failed to do so, the Estonian Internal Security Service stated.  “Sooner or later, we will catch those who are trying to endanger the security of the Estonian state,” said Margo Palloson, ISS director.  Palloson said the perpetrators of the acts of vandalism were often recruited via social media. “Attentive people have already helped us a lot,” he said, urging the public to report suspicious activities online to the ISS. Russia used locals as its tools and then left them to face the consequences alone, he noted. Russia disputed the Estonian claims, with Ministry of Foreign Affairs spokesperson Maria Zakharova telling POLITICO: “These are some mirror-world news. The Estonian regime sponsors [Ukrainian President Volodymyr] Zelenskyy’s terrorism, pursues a Russophobic policy, leads the forefront of the sanctions war against our country, and then makes noise over broken windows? It’s a theater …

Chill Out About Your Gut Health

Chill Out About Your Gut Health

In my childhood home, an often-repeated phrase was “All disease begins in the gut.” My dad, a health nut, used this mantra to justify his insistence that our family eat rice-heavy meals, at the exact same time every day, to promote regularity and thus overall health. I would roll my eyes, dubious that his enthusiasm for this practice was anything more than fussiness. Now, to my chagrin, his obsession has become mainstream. Social-media testimonials claim that improving your “gut health” not only helps with stomach issues such as bloating and pain but also leads to benefits beyond the gastrointestinal system (easing problems including, but not limited to, itching, puffy face, slow-growing hair, low energy, acne, weight gain, and anxiety). You can now find a staggering range of products claiming to support digestive health: Joining traditionally gut-friendly fermented foods such as yogurt and sauerkraut are “probiotic” or “prebiotic” teas, cookies, gummies, supplements, powders, and even sodas. The reality is less straightforward. Maintaining the health of the gastrointestinal tract, like the health of any body part, is …

Who is Yulia Navalnaya, Putin’s new enemy?  – POLITICO

Who is Yulia Navalnaya, Putin’s new enemy?  – POLITICO

“My main task is for our family to stay the same, despite everything,” she told Harper’s Bazaar.  Behind the scenes, however, those who knew the couple well said Navalnaya not only shared her husband’s views, but also helped shape them.  Telepathic connection “At every stage of Alexei’s career, Yulia has always been by his side,” Anna Veduta, employee of the U.S. branch of Navalny’s Anti-Corruption Foundation, told POLITICO.   Those who knew the couple well said Navalnaya not only shared her husband’s views, but also helped shape them | Pool photo by Yves Herman/AFP via Getty Images “There was some kind of telepathic connection between them, they sometimes didn’t even need to speak; they thought alike.” At rallies and court hearings, Navalnaya was always at her husband’s side, attracting the media’s attention with her striking physique and composure, despite her stated wish to avoid the limelight. “These bastards will never see our tears,” was her response when Navalny received his first prison sentence in 2013 in an embezzlement case his supporters denounced as politically motivated. …

The Benjamin Franklin House Literary Prize

The Benjamin Franklin House Literary Prize

“Government must depend for its Efficiency either on Force or Opinion.” From ‘The Colonist’s Advocate’, VII. (Feb 1, 1770)  We have become accustomed, today, to seeing our own societies as the pinnacle of human achievement because we have reached a settlement which once appeared impossible: a society governed not by force but by opinion. The promise of a liberal democracy is that the weight of the majority ought to be greater than that of the strong and that persuasion should reign where coercion once governed human affairs. When Benjamin Franklin observed, in 1770, that all governments must rest either upon force or opinion for their ‘efficiency’ (by which he, a man of the eighteenth century, meant what we now term efficacy), he was advancing what was not then a commonplace but instead a remarkable rejection of the existing order of political life. That force ruled in the world of politics was accepted by almost all of Franklin’s contemporaries. Prior to the eighteenth century, it had been almost universally held that public peace required force to …

Bluesky’s Future Is Social Media’s Past

Bluesky’s Future Is Social Media’s Past

Like any good citizen of the internet, I went hunting for memes when I first heard the news. Rachel Dolezal, the notorious race grifter who courted controversy in 2015, had been fired from her teaching gig for operating an OnlyFans account. I was in need of a good laugh. Only, I wasn’t having much luck. I happened to be in foreign territory, on Bluesky, the Jack Dorsey-endorsed social media app hailed as The Next Big Thing, when News4 Tucson broke the story. A specter of a bygone era, Dolezal is considered Peak Internet. In June of 2015, while serving as president of a local NAACP chapter in Washington state, she was outed for racial cosplay. Although born a white woman, Dolezal posed as Black. Debates ensued. Everyone had an opinion about her. There were thinkpieces, and thinkpieces about those thinkpieces. People accused her of co-opting a culture she had no right to, wearing a kind of blackface for personal gain. “Why can’t Rachel Dolezal transcend race?” Barrie Freidland asked in the Baltimore Sun. Ultimately Dolezal …

Israel pounds Gaza, formally rejects ‘unilateral recognition’ of Palestinian statehood – POLITICO

Israel pounds Gaza, formally rejects ‘unilateral recognition’ of Palestinian statehood – POLITICO

“Both yesterday and the day before, the WHO team was not permitted to enter the hospital to assess the conditions of the patients and critical medical needs, despite reaching the hospital compound to deliver fuel alongside partners,” he said. He estimated that there are still “about 200 patients” in the hospital with 20 in urgent need of referral to other hospitals to receive health care. The Israeli strikes come amid growing fears of a regional escalation of the Israel-Hamas war and growing international calls for a cease-fire.  Brazilian President Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva on Sunday likened the war to the Holocaust, telling reporters during an African Union summit in Addis Ababa: “What is happening in the Gaza Strip with the Palestinian people has no parallel in other historical moments. In fact, it did exist when Hitler decided to kill the Jews.” Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu described the remarks as “disgraceful and grave.” The Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem said it would summon the Brazilian ambassador for a reprimand. Israel on Sunday also formalized its …

Former Frontex chief joins French far right for EU election – POLITICO

Former Frontex chief joins French far right for EU election – POLITICO

“Our objective is clear: to regain control of the borders of the European Union and France,” he posted on social media network X on Saturday. The National Rally “has a concrete plan and the determination to make it a reality,” he said. According to new poll data released last week, France’s far right is forecast to record its highest-ever result in the upcoming European Parliament election. The National Rally, led by member of the European Parliament Jordan Bardella, could win 33 percent of the vote, while the far-right Reconquête party would stand at 6 percent, according to a poll from consultancy firm Portland Communications shared with POLITICO. Source link