Disguised as teapot, Adolf Hitler sneaks onto J.C. Penney billboard


We don’t know how, but Adolf Hitler somehow managed to sneak past a photographer, several advertising executives and J.C. Penney’s marketing department and make it onto a billboard. Disguising himself as a teapot might have had something to do with it, but once you’ve seen him, it’s impossible not to see.


Editor’s note: The spelling of Adolf has been corrected. Twitchy regrets the error.

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2013/05/24/disguised-as-teapot-adolph-hitler-sneaks-onto-j-c-penney-billboard/

Washington Post neck deep in for-profit higher ed scandal


From Accuracy in Media:

A former admissions adviser for Kaplan explained how The Washington Post was used in their sales pitch to prospective students.

“One of the things that I always said was, ‘As you may know, Kaplan is owned by The Washington Post, a paper known for having really high ethics,’ he said. ‘As you can imagine, The Washington Post would never involve itself in anything that would reflect poorly on its reputation.’”

But the prestige and high ethics promised by a relationship with the Post never materialized. Melvin learned the hard way, as have other students, that the Kaplan experience consists of “high prices, uneven performance and shady marketing practices.”5 Worse, the university, for all of its selling points, has a dropout rate of nearly 70%, and those who do graduate earn well below the national average for college graduates—outcomes not exactly befitting of a money-making juggernaut and its supposedly ethical parent company.

Unfortunately, Melvin’s experience is not an isolated incident. Targeting and recruiting veterans is such a common practice among for-profit colleges that it prompted Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois to introduce legislation which would eliminate the financial incentive for these colleges to aggressively recruit veterans into pricey programs.6 A report in the Chicago Tribune explains that “military veterans are being aggressively recruited… because of their lucrative forms of federal aid, such as GI Bill funds and Department of Defense tuition assistance benefits.” Such funds are not bound by the 90/10 rule, which bars the for-profits from deriving more than 90 percent of their revenue from the Department of Education’s federal student-aid programs.

The article goes on to discuss WaPo/Kaplan lobbying and allegations of insider trading on Kaplan stock.

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2012/03/09/washington-post-neck-deep-in-for-profit-higher-ed-scandal/

‘Stop the planet. I want off’! New ‘study’ reveals that ‘hurricanes are sexist’


You know, we’ve had to put up with sexism from our patriarchal oppressors for years. But we’ll be damned if we’ll allow ourselves to just sit back and take it from our weather!


Serious, you guys:


Via The Washington Post:

Researchers at the University of Illinois and Arizona State University examined six decades of hurricane death rates according to gender, spanning 1950 and 2012. Of the 47 most damaging hurricanes, the male-named hurricane produced an average of 23 deaths compared to 45 deaths for female-named hurricanes, or almost double the number of fatalities. (The study excluded Katrina and Audrey, outlier storms that would skew the model).

There’s only one possible explanation for this: Sexism!!!11!

The difference in death rates between genders was even more pronounced when comparing strongly masculine names versus strongly female ones.
“[Our] model suggests that changing a severe hurricane’s name from Charley … to Eloise … could nearly triple its death toll,” the study says.

Sharon Shavitt, study co-author and professor of marketing at the University of Illinois, says the results imply an “implicit sexism”; that is, we make decisions about storms based on the gender of their name without even recognizing it.

Clearly the time and money spent on this “study” were well worth it. Except not even remotely.


So painfully asinine. It’s actually hurting our brains.



Only a little common sense:


And a lot of snark can save us now:


And not a moment too soon!




Oh, snap.

Editor’s note: This post has been update with additional tweets.

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2014/06/02/stop-the-planet-i-want-off-new-study-reveals-that-hurricanes-are-sexist/

Food stamp nation: Should this woman qualify for SNAP benefits?


[Update: @_EatMyTweets13 locked down her Twitter account just before noon ET on Saturday. Twitchy has added screenshots of photos to this post so that they can still be viewed by our readers.]

Think the food stamp system isn’t broken? Meet @_EatMyTweets13.

According to her Twitter feed, @_EatMyTweets13 called to check her food stamp balance earlier this month. She was surprised to learn that she’s still getting assistance and the balance has grown to $400.


Many of our elected officials caw about how food stamp fraud, illegal sale of EBT cards and benefits that exceed need are the stuff of myth. Oh, and of course nasty conservatives hate the poor because they won’t increase entitlements.

But evidently @_EatMyTweets13 doesn’t exactly need SNAP benefits to meet her nutritional needs.


Hey, guys, she’s got a cable bill to pay.


There’s no evidence that this young woman committed food stamp fraud. All we know is that according to her tweets, she receives benefits she doesn’t seem to use. But D.C. pander-bears continue to protect a system in which people who do just fine without food stamps look forward to a taxpayer-funded payday each month.

What else do we know about @_EatMyTweets13?

She has an iPhone. (Service plans don’t come cheap.)





And she likes to use that iPhone to tweet about her surprisingly high food stamp balance.


She has WiFi:


And she seems to have money for weed.




She cranks up her air conditioning like it’s going out of style.


And she likes to hit IHOP, Hooters and TGI Fridays for grub.


So … what’s on her agenda for next week?



FreedomWorks’ Kristina Ribali: Weaning people off food stamps is real SNAP challenge

For votes? For Thanksgiving? Confused, entitled Twitter users thank ‘cutee’ Obama for extra food stamps

Entitled Obama supporters rejoice that they can keep their food stamps

Food stamps recipients double under Obama; Result? Selling food stamps for an iPhone 5 is all the rage

Food stamp fraud all the rage on Twitter

Obama’s food-stamp nation: ‘We accept EBT’ signs are everywhere

It’s a SNAP: 7-Eleven now marketing pizza with food stamp logo [photos]

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2013/11/23/food-stamp-nation-should-this-woman-qualify-for-snap-benefits/

These 25 Hilarious ‘Demotivational’ Posters Are Just Way Too Real

We’ve all seen those annoying motivational posters at one point or another.

Whether they happen to decorate the walls of our classrooms or offices, one thing’s for sure: They don’t really do that much in the way of motivating us with their vague sayings about accomplishing goals. That’s why one company decided to turn the idea on its head and crank out harsh yet hilarious truths on their own posters.

Despair, Inc. sells products that give you just what its name implies — hopelessness. But when that feeling comes in the form of seriously funny posters, all the terrible realities we live with don’t seem so awful. Click the links above each photo to bring some (more) disappointment into your life.

Read More: Raccoon Paws Or Tiny Demon Hands? You Decide

1. I’m sure they’ll eventually take all of the harder ones, too.

2. Quantity over quality, not the other way around!

3. Well, that’s one way to increase productivity.

googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.defineSlot(‘/37886402/VN_PG_DCI1_BTF’, [300, 250], ‘VN_PG_DCI1_BTF_5818006650ba9’).addService(googletag.pubads()) googletag.pubads().setTargeting(“NOVA_MB”, “VN_”); googletag.pubads().setTargeting(“NOVA_SC”, “VN_ORGN”); googletag.pubads().setTargeting(“NOVA_TS”, “TS_D”); googletag.pubads().setTargeting(“NOVA_AT”, “VN_ORGN_PG_D_REV_1.0_ASYNC_DEFAULT”); googletag.pubads().setTargeting(“NOVA_CC”, “VN_ORGN_D_UNK_118256_A”); googletag.pubads().setTargeting(“NOVA_PG”, “1”); googletag.enableServices(); googletag.display(‘VN_PG_DCI1_BTF_5818006650ba9’); });

4. The best thing to do is just to not try at all.

5. Some of them may never even notice what’s wrong with this picture.

6. Working hard doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll move on to greater things.

7. Sometimes giving up is the smartest option.

8. I’ll figure out something witty to say later.

9. Safety in numbers? Try stupidity.

10. No greater truth has ever been spoken.

11. That’s really nice to know.

12. It’s not like effort always pays off, anyway.

13. “We have a long line of people proudly getting gored by bulls in our family.”

14. Excuse me while I go crawl under my covers and cry myself to sleep.

15. Or just listen to us blame everyone else for our country’s problems.

16. Because they’re all full of crap.

17. Well, I graduated college, so I have that going for me.

18. This pretty much sums up most of our lives.

19. Being dead is better than being boring, right?

20. “The poster says I’m a winner, therefore it must be true.”

21. Here’s a not-that-secretive secret. We’re all clueless.

22. “Do you want fries with that?”

23. At least it would have some purpose.

24. And you’ll be easily replaced in no time.

25. Said every employer ever.

Read More: Awesome New Gadget Will Spare You The Shame Of Drinking Wine Right From The Bottle

They may be a little depressing, but at least they’re entertaining, right? You can buy these awesome posters and more hilarious stuff at Despair, Inc.

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/demotivational-posters/

Virtual Reality Could Be The Toughest Fight Of Mark Zuckerberg’s Life

The Facebook founder says the Oculus Rift headset could be the future of the internet. But to get there, he needs to do battle with the entire gaming industry.

An attendee tries on the Oculus VR Inc. Rift Development Kit 2 headset at the 2014 Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles. Kevork Djansezian / Reuters

Just before the Oculus Rift Kickstarter campaign launched, Brendan Iribe brought what looked like a large hunk of plastic into the San Francisco offices of Unity Technologies, whose game development platform is one of the industry’s most widely used. Unity CEO David Helgason tried on what was the very first version of the Oculus Rift, a virtual reality headset whose maker was destined to be bought out by Facebook for more than $2 billion before ever having a product hit the market.

“It was really, really bad back then,” Helgason told BuzzFeed News in an interview. “It didn’t know what was down — they had to hard-reset what was down, otherwise the world would seem like it was tilting. Even then it was such a touching experience to be inside a world like that. But I got super sick from the first dev kit. It was terrible, right, but even then it was such a touching experience.”

Since then, the Rift has made a lot of progress. Even the very first iteration of the device, with all its flaws, was described by many who used it — both veteran game developers and regular users — as a masterpiece. But in interviews with more than a dozen game developers and executives either building applications for the virtual reality headset or familiar with those who are, one clear theme emerged: The Rift’s biggest challenge isn’t getting the technology right.

Instead, the make-or-break issue will be beating the competition and winning the hearts of developers, as swarms of technology majors pour billions into rolling out their own virtual reality devices. And unlike Oculus and its parent company Facebook, the competition has a track record of pushing out devices and games that reach, and delight, the mass market. At the Consumer Electronic Show this week in Las Vegas, manufacturers are expected to show off a wave of VR devices — and Oculus, too, will be there.

The Rift faces the tech industry’s perennial technology chicken-and-egg scenario: To get software developers on board, you need your devices in the hands of a critical mass of consumers — and consumers gravitate toward devices that have the best software. Facebook has many things going for it: near limitless cash, a visionary leader, a deep pool of technical talent. But it has no experience building or publishing games, which in the early days will be the killer app of virtual reality headsets.

A representative from Oculus VR declined an interview request for co-founders Iribe and Palmer Luckey.

The Rift needs hit games, and fast. Words With Friends creator Paul Bettner’s studio, Playful Corp, is one of the first publishers Facebook is working with to build those critical launch titles. Independent developers are still encouraged to develop for the kit through platforms like Unity, but with the competition racing to define the market, Facebook has rapidly begun working on developing its own software.

“I’ve been a huge advocate within Oculus pushing for a solution to that chicken-and-egg problem,” Bettner told BuzzFeed News. “It depends on who you talk to; my sense is that gamers and video games are the Trojan horse required to get virtual reality off the ground. From my standpoint the way you solve that, it becomes like any other console launch.”

The Nintendo Wii, which pioneered novel methods of gameplay using sensors and hand gestures, is a good example of the challenge ahead, Bettner said. “The Wii was doing enough things different that they were basically launching something [brand new] — not the same as VR but they had to prove this new controller was something people want to buy instead of buying a PlayStation,” he said. “They went out and built a bunch of first-party software [like Super Mario Galaxy and The Legend of Zelda] that proved the value of that platform, because they couldn’t rely on developers to do that.”

For now, the most formidable Rift competitor is Sony and its Morpheus VR headset. Through the PlayStation, Sony has a proven history of driving the adoption of new hardware, and whenever a new console comes out, Sony can lean on decades of relationships in the video game industry. On top of that are the game development studios it owns, which can finance to create massive sales-drivers like Uncharted and The Last of Us. That financing doesn’t just fund large development studios, but also massive marketing and advertising campaigns that can span from billboards to television and the Internet — and potentially even Facebook itself.

Releasing a big, expensive new game alongside a flagship new console is a dance Sony and the big studios have done for a long time. “When you do co-launches, you’re dependent, much like in your best friend relationships, and you learn over time who you can count on and similarly who you can’t count on,” said Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers partner Bing Gordon, a longtime executive in the industry. “You know these companies have been to war together. Their relationships have stood the test of time.”

Sony, too, has already demoed launch titles for the Morpheus, like Eve Valkyrie, a space-piloting game that’s a spin-off of Eve Online — a game beloved by a niche of hardcore players who devote hundreds of hours to playing. Square Enix, the creator of the Final Fantasy series, has also planned to launch a version of Thief.

Sony’s Morpheus VR device, unveiled at the Game Developer Conference last year. Yuya Shino / Reuters

Many developers are also expecting Microsoft to have its own take on a VR headset, and like Sony, it has a proven record driving console adoption. Indeed, of the developers BuzzFeed News spoke with, many described an industry that is essentially holding its breath to see what Microsoft comes out with.

Other competitors are also trying to get in on the action. Samsung released its own virtual reality system, the Gear VR, which connects Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 to a headset powered by software from Oculus VR. Samsung might not fall directly into the category of competitor due to its partnership with Oculus VR, but the company has massive production and distribution channels and knows how to push devices through global retail channels in huge volumes. The company’s Galaxy Note phones are often credited with creating the market for larger “phablet”-sized phones.

And the competition could potentially expand beyond simple VR headsets. Magic Leap, a tight-lipped company specializing in augmented reality, raised $542 million in a financing round last year that Google led. The search giant had previously created an augmented-reality device of its own, Google Glass, which has so far failed to create an enthusiastic user base.

Each competitor has different, but equally formidable, mechanisms for getting as many devices into as many households as possible. And volume attracts not only developers — who will inevitably build the killer app that sends VR mainstream — but also large game publishers like Electronic Arts, Ubisoft, and Activision-Blizzard. Ubisoft’s Assassin’s Creed franchise has been a staple for consoles — but if it’s going to make it into a VR headset, it’s going to find its way to the best-selling hardware first.

The same holds true for independent developers. For a small development studio, creating a game for multiple platforms takes a lot of time and money — both things in short supply for a small team, or a lone developer. While the process of “porting” games — translating the code to work on several consoles — has gotten easier, developers still have to ensure the game feels right.

“If you have a PC game that uses a keyboard and you go to console, you have to come up with a new way to come up with an interface,” Mike Bithell, the creator of Thomas Was Alone, told BuzzFeed News. “We took [Thomas Was Alone] to iPad, we had to completely reinvent the way to control. Those changes pile up. The porting the code bit, is probably now — and it’s weird to say it — the smallest job.”

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg acknowledges the challenge. “It needs to reach a very large scale, 50 million units to 100 million units, before it’ll really be a very meaningful thing as a computing platform,” Zuckerberg said on the company’s third-quarter earnings call last year. “So I do think it’s going to take a bunch of years to get there. Maybe, I don’t know, it’s hard to predict exactly, but I don’t think it’s going to get to 50 million units or 100 million units in the next few years.”

Zuckerberg’s vision for Oculus Rift isn’t necessarily restricted to games. And the applications for the Rift could very well go beyond simply video games; Zuckerberg himself has said it is essentially a bet on the future of the internet. But device adoption has historically been driven by games, whether with consoles or smartphones, and in getting into the console business, Facebook faces one of the greatest competitive challenges in its 10-year history.

An attendee tries an Oculus-powered Samsung Gear VR headset during the French telecom Orange annual company’s innovations show in Paris on Oct. 2, 2014. Charles Platiau / Reuters

Still, Oculus VR — which Facebook says has shipped more than 100,000 development kits — won an early victory by proving there was a market for an inexpensive virtual reality headset. And it captured the attention of developers around the world, thanks in large part to co-founder Luckey’s own enthusiasm. In buying Oculus VR, Facebook put itself in a strong position, with widely distributed software developer kits, or SDKs for short, ahead of other device manufacturers.

Early in the company’s life, John Carmack — the creator of the Doom series and one of the most-revered minds in the gaming industry — joined as Oculus’ chief technology officer. The company also hired Michael Abrash from Valve — the company behind the Half LIfe and Counter Strike series — as the its chief scientist. Prior to working at Oculus VR, Abrash was working on a VR system for Valve around the time Luckey was creating prototypes for the Rift.

That early enthusiasm served Oculus well. Initially, Luckey and Iribe sought to channel the independent developer community, which was as excited about building an experience on a cheap VR headset as the duo were. In theory, the technology was so new and fascinating that it would be able to collect enough developers to hopefully strike gold and create the Mario or Angry Birds of the virtual reality era. One hit is often all it takes to make a platform take off — Halo drove the Xbox and Super Mario World drove the Super Nintendo.

But under new ownership, observers in the industry have already noticed a shift in how Oculus approaches the developer community. As Facebook has taken over, the company has enlisted the likes of Jason Rubin — best known for the Crash Bandicoot series and initial success of Naughty Dog — to begin focusing on content. Jason Holtman, who joined from Valve, is also playing a significant role in growing the company’s publishing efforts.

It all makes for a frenzied environment among game makers. “The entire industry is exploding behind closed doors,” Cloudhead Games Creative Director Denny Unger, whose company is developing for Oculus Rift, told BuzzFeed News. “You have [Samsung’s] Gear VR, you have Oculus, you have Morpheus — which we’re developing for as well. There’s a number of other players that are working on stuff in secret; it’s this maelstrom of innovation happening at the same time. As a developer it’s tricky to hedge your bets on one system.”

Palmer Luckey, founder of Oculus, holds a Rift headset in his Irvine, California, offices, May 24, 2013. Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times / MCT

Unlike the traditional game console makers, Facebook also has the opportunity to create an virtual reality software development kit that can span multiple hardware sets — potentially shifting some of the burden of producing hardware on to more experienced manufacturers, while still maintaining its own line of devices. Luckey, too, has said it would be a positive outcome for Oculus. “In the long run, we would love to see content made with the Oculus SDK running across a wide variety of hardware,” he noted in a comment on Reddit.

Iribe, too, has said something to the same effect: “If we do want to get a billion people on virtual reality, which is our goal, we’re not going to sell 1 billion pairs of glasses ourselves,” he said in an interview earlier this year.

This is essentially a hedge against losing out among developers. Should Microsoft or Sony become the dominant hardware platform, Oculus VR can seek to embed its technology across the widest number of devices. But that, too, is dependent on there being enough room in the VR market for devices that aren’t made by the big console companies.

The fight is expected begin in the second half of 2015. But David De Martini, the former head of EA Partners who joined Oculus as its head of partnerships and has since retired, said the quality of its technology means Oculus could lose the battle over the first hit game and device, but still win the war.

“Even if the platform doesn’t take off rapidly when it first releases, it will win [because the immersive experiences on the Rift] are so far and above revolutionary,” he said. “When people see the capability of the platform, they’ll flock to it. That could be ahead of the release or as the product releases. It’ll lead to a slower rate of adoption, but ultimately it will win because it’s so amazing on those dimensions.”

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/mattlynley/mark-zuckerbergs-virtual-reality-moon-shot-could-be-the-toug

‘Who’s up for another government viral marketing fail?’: Meet Fruved.com


No, it’s not rape videos, it’s grape videos.

Once you’ve visited Fruved.com and clicked on a video, you’ll understand the need for the disclaimer, “No federal dollars were spent in the making of these videos.” After seeing the IRS’ Star Trek training video, it’s hard to tell just what the federal government will pay for.


Fruved, you see, is a mash-up of the words “fruit” and “vegetables.” Students at the University of Tennessee created the Fruved campaign to promote healthy eating and physical activity. Part of that campaign was the creation of student-made videos like this one.

Nick Gillespie gives an overview of the campaign at Reason.com:

The USDA has given $5 million in your tax dollars to a University of Tennessee campaign that tells kids to “Get Fruved.” Part of that grant is on display above in a 30-second that implores an unsuspecting college student (who I really hope is calling out a campus SWAT team) to “get fruved – grape style!” Where are ultra-restrictive campus speech zones when you need them?

We’ll let Iowahawk explain the rest.


Are the videos really that bad?


Read more: http://twitchy.com/2014/03/18/whos-up-for-another-government-viral-marketing-fail-meet-fruved-com/

Controversial Lululemon Founder Resigns From Company’s Board

Chip Wilson has been under intense scrutiny since the company’s see-through-pants scandal in early 2013.

Chip Wilson, the controversial founder of Lululemon, said he will resign from the yoga-wear maker’s board after roughly a year of gradually distancing himself from the company.

Wilson, 59, said that it’s “the right time to step away from the board,” now that he has helped put the company “back on track.” He added: “The company has returned to the core values that made it great — product, brand and culture.”

Wilson, an Ayn Rand enthusiast who founded Lululemon in 1998, has been under intense scrutiny in recent years, after returning to the company to help it deal with its sheer-pants scandal in 2013, a public relations nightmare that led to costly recalls. He is said to have clashed with then-CEO Christine Day on the future of Lululemon, ultimately leading to her resignation later that year. Since then, however, he’s made a number of extremely public gaffes that have rankled customers and clashed publicly with other members of the company’s executive leadership team.

For all of Wilson’s faults, he is responsible, in part, for creating the market for high-end workout clothes, successfully combining fashionable exercise apparel with technical expertise, just as yoga was taking off in North America. It’s no small feat; few chains were successfully selling $100 yoga pants to women before Lululemon came around.

The rise of “athleisure” has been well-documented since then. More than ever, women are trading in jeans and other casual pants for pricy workout gear, and every retailer is racing to get on board, from Under Armour to Gap’s Athleta. Lululemon now brings in more than $1 billion in revenue, and its sales per square foot, a key measure in retailing, regularly rank close behind Apple and Tiffany’s and typically in the top five among all chains.

In 2013, Wilson infuriated customers after saying on Bloomberg Television that its yoga pants “don’t work” for all women’s bodies, and that some of the problem is “about the rubbing through the thighs.” He followed that with a non-apology to women that was seized on by Stephen Colbert, who called Wilson sexist and racist, noting: “Chip knows that calling out your chub-rub is just good marketing.”

A number of Wilson’s troubling past remarks were subsequently publicized, including the notion that “cigarette-smoking power women who were on the pill” caused growing instances of breast cancer in the 1990s and that birth control has caused the divorce rate to rise.

Wilson’s dabbling preceded even the sheer pants scandal, though. In November 2011, Wilson had the phrase “Who is John Galt?” printed on Lululemon tote bags (a line from Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged) without Day’s knowledge, the Wall Street Journal reported. The bags annoyed customers, and Day had to quickly replace them.

In December 2013, Wilson stepped down as the company’s chairman, but remained on its board, where he continued making waves. Wilson put out a press release last summer, calling for shareholders to oust two of his fellow board members, just hours before the company’s annual meeting began. After that, he cut a deal with private-equity firm Advent International to sell half his 27% stake to the firm; the firm added two of its managers to the company’s board.

Wilson has spent time building a meditation startup called Whil and, more recently, developing a casual clothing line called Kit and Ace.

Once Lululemon took off, Wilson told The New Yorker that “cashmere was all I wanted to wear.”

This inspired his wife, Shannon, to create a type of cashmere that can go into a washing machine called “qemir,” the magazine reported.

Andrew Chin / Getty Images


Adds details on Wilson’s contributions to high-end workout apparel and the athleisure trend. BF_STATIC.timequeue.push(function () { document.getElementById(“update_article_update_time_4824994”).innerHTML = UI.dateFormat.get_formatted_date(‘2015-02-02 13:31:36 -0500’, ‘update’); });

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/sapna/controversial-lululemon-founder-resigns

Smooth move! FLOTUS’ O-care pitch: ‘Young people are knuckleheads’ [video]


Hey, when FLOTUS said “Let’s Move!” she didn’t say the moves had to be smooth.


During her “Tonight Show” appearance, Michelle Obama told Jimmy Fallon that “the truth is young people are knuckleheads.” That’s why they need Obamacare, natch.


The insult … always an effective marketing tool.


Video via The Weekly Standard:

Ah. You mean these knuckleheads, Mrs. Obama?




Read more: http://twitchy.com/2014/02/21/smooth-move-flotus-obamacare-pitch-young-people-are-knuckleheads-video/

Remember These 10 Products? No? Well That’s Because They Were Massively Awful Flops.

There’s a popular thing in entrepreneurship these days called “validating your idea.” That is, doing a bit of market research ahead of time to see if anyone will actually want your product before you make it. 

It’s a simple strategy that can potentially save millions of dollars worth of time and effort. Clearly though, this isn’t something that everyone does. Because if they did, this list of products that flopped spectacularly would be much much shorter.

Seriously. Just take a look, and get ready to cringe. 

1.) The Apple Newton.

This handheld personal computing device debuted in 1993 with a price tag of $700. The Newton’s bulkiness, price, and software shortcomings made it an easy target in the media. By 1998 the Newton gracefully faded away. 

2.) Sony Betamax.

Sony thought they would change the world with their Betamax video recorder. Instead its become a running joke that still hasn’t gotten old. Sony was first to market with their video recorder, but VHS was not far behind. The company refused to license their Betamax technology, and forced customers to choose between them or VHS. 

3.) Cosmopolitan Magazine Yogurt.

It only took the media empire that is Cosmopolitan Magazine 18 months to realize that they should stick to magazines instead of yogurt. Good call.

4.) Microsoft Bob.

As personal computers were finding their way into Americans’ homes in the mid 1990’s, Microsoft decided to try something different. They wanted to create a totally new interactive experience for personal PC users. That project was Bob. Sadly it was killed in development after only a year. The average PC simply did not have enough power to handle the Bob program. 

5.) Coors Spring Water.

Though Coors is arguably a good beer, the company’s customers were not interested in buying water from them. Coors’ Rocky Mountain Spring Water project fell flat on its face. 

6.) The Zune.

Designed by Microsoft to be an iPod killer, hopes were high for the Zune. However it just wasn’t enough. At least now you can find them for crazy cheap on eBay. 

7.) Maxwell House Ready To Drink Coffee.

Coffee that’s ready to go when I am? Yes please! Oh wait, I have to microwave it? I also can’t microwave it in its container? Then why would I ever buy this? Exactly. 

8.) Colgate Foods.

This is probably the weirdest one of the list. Since when does a toothpaste company try to also sell you food. What made them think this would be a good idea?

9.) Life Savers Soda.

Despite the relative popularity of the Life Savers candy, their soda incarnation did not fare very well. Just stick to what you’re good at, ok Life Savers?

10.) Smith & Wessen Bicycles.

Smith & Wessen is best known for making firearms. A little known fact though, is that the company also produces bicycles for law enforcement. Back in the early 2000’s the company decided to try marketing their bikes to the public, but no one really seemed to care. 

(Via: Daily Finance)

No wonder everyone always looks at me weird when I’m using my Apple Newton, while listening to music on my Zune and drinking Life Savers Soda. Share these amazing product flops with your friends on Facebook by clicking below.

Read more: http://viralnova.com/product-flops/

McDonald’s Replaces CEO Don Thompson After A Horrendous Year

“It’s tough to say goodbye to the McFamily, but there is a time and season for everything,” Thompson said in a statement.

McDonald’s CEO Don Thompson, who will step down on March 1. Adreees Latif / Reuters

The crisis at the world’s largest fast food chain has claimed its highest profile victim: McDonald’s Chief Executive Officer Don Thompson is leaving the company on March 1, the company said today. The announcement came after a quarter where the fast food giant lost ground all over the world, and a year of declining sales and grim results.

Thompson is stepping down after less than three years on the job — a short tenure marked by the company’s first sustained period of declining sales and existential questions about its future and relevance amid changing eating habits. The company said in a statement that Thompson would be replaced by Steve Easterbrook, currently its chief brand officer, as both president and CEO. Easterbook will also take a spot on its board of directors.

Thompson was appointed CEO in 2012, taking over that July for Jim Skinner, who retired after eight years in the top job and 41 years at the company.

“It’s tough to say goodbye to the McFamily,” Thompson said in the statement, “but there is a time and season for everything. I am truly confident as I pass the reins over to Steve, that he will continue to move our business and brand forward.”

Investors cheered the leadership change, with McDonald’s stock rising 3% in after-hours trading. The stock has fallen 6% in the last 12 months.

As chief brand officer, Easterbrook was in charge of the company’s marketing and digital efforts as well as its new menu items. Thompson’s departure comes following dismal recent performance, with revenue falling 7% in its most recent quarter, and profits dropping 19%.

The drop was caused by a combination of the U.S. dollar strengthening against foreign currencies, fewer customers going to stores, and an especially sharp downturn in the company’s Asian business. Scandal hit the company after pieces of plastic — and in one case, a tooth — were found in meals served at McDonald’s in Japan.

In the United States, profit fell almost $300 million from a year ago. The company has promised a turnaround, including more diverse menus for different regions and more responsiveness to consumer taste. But it is struggling: In 2014, same-store customer traffic in the U.S. fell more than 4% from the previous year.

McDonald’s also appointed its current chief financial officer Pete Bensen to the new role of chief administrative officer, and promoted its current corporate controller Kevin Ozan to the CFO role.

“McDonald’s is an outstanding company with talented employees and these management changes are aimed at speeding the company’s movement to its next phase of innovation and growth,” McDonald’s chairman Andrew McKenna said.

Read more: http://www.buzzfeed.com/matthewzeitlin/mcdonalds-replaces-ceo-don-thompson-after-a-horrendous-year

Tebow trails only Oprah, Adele and Kate Middleton in marketability


We have to agree with Skip. This is pretty good news for a backup quarterback who can’t throw a spiral to save his life.

From NY Daily News:

Tim Tebow, the Jets newly acquired backup quarterback, is one of the top five most coveted celebrity endorsements, according to a new marketing index.

Sports Illustrated recently asked promotions company The Marketing Arm to update their Davie-Brown Index to see how Gang Green’s choirboy fared.

The marketing formula measures 3,000 celebrities in eight categories, including trust, appeal, aspiration and influence.

Thanks in part to the blanket media coverage since getting tapped by the Jets — including three days on the front page of the Daily News — Tebow trails only Oprah Winfrey, Adele and Kate Middleton as the personality who would most effectively shill your product.

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2012/03/27/tebow-trails-only-oprah-adele-and-kate-middleton-in-marketability/

Friday fresh hell: Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield make nice over BBQ sauce


Fifteen years after the infamous Bite Fite, suddenly, potential Green Party VP candidate Mike Tyson and Evander Holyfield are besties.

.@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/e5Gp3RUs #TGIF

— Mike Tyson (@MikeTyson) June 29, 2012

@MikeTyson Hey bro, let me know how many bottles u will need of my http://t.co/aiK26S0s!

— Evander Holyfield (@holyfield) June 29, 2012

Awww … hug it out, guys.

@MikeTyson @holyfield it was so nice that you two are friends now. I was at 4th grade when i watched your classic ear biting bout. 😉

— lance lambert ayson (@sirlancelambert) June 29, 2012


Um, what the hell just happened??? Twitter tried to make sense of it all. Sort of.

Pretty sick chubbs RT @MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/byX1K3Go

— Taylor Artman (@OKCTA23) June 29, 2012

@MikeTyson @holyfield Jesus that's fucked up. Nice plug, though

— rich belding (@dgr0ss) June 29, 2012

You just srsly went there "@MikeTyson: @holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/8P7jx4Pd"

— Frank, as himself (@Frank_El_Tank) June 29, 2012

Too soon Mike RT “@MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/35xQj8oU

— Nasim Gianna (@NasimDaDream) June 29, 2012


Tyson rules. RT @MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/WtKbgXfH #TGIF

— Toucher and Rich (@Toucherandrich) June 29, 2012

Savage…RT @MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/YX0FpdUR #TGIF

— Jeff Germain (@Jeffgotjuice) June 29, 2012

This dude wild… RT @MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/NTK1k7bT

— R. Paul Talley (@WasSaulNowPaul) June 29, 2012

#BestTweetEver? RT @MikeTyson .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/z5yXN1SC

— Everett Case (@EverettCase) June 29, 2012

@MikeTyson Having a laugh and a joke about biting a mans ear off, Only you can make that look normal #Legend!

— #KingSolomon (@MatthewKoleowo) June 29, 2012

@MikeTyson @holyfield Tyson you should enter the marketing business, that advertisement is GENIUS!!

— Ferguson (@JermaineFergiee) June 29, 2012

PCP or bath salts? RT @MikeTyson .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/NkMByUxL

— DJ Nogalski (@djnogalski) June 29, 2012

#ThisGuy RT @MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/CDZUUOL8 #TGIF

— Tom Beck (@iAmTrza) June 29, 2012

This isn't right. RT @MikeTyson @holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/JnbmTEBU #TGIF

— Jarel Loveless (@jarelloveless) June 29, 2012


You know, I'm glad @MikeTyson and @holyfield have put water under the bridge and can joke about 'the bite,' gives me faith in humanity.

— Mouse, of Saxony (@SaxMouse) June 29, 2012

Iron Mike is crazy RT @MikeTyson: @holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/slO7FqH7 #TGIF

— Sinc or swim (@Da_Kitchen_Sinc) June 29, 2012

Mike Tyson folks! “@MikeTyson: .@holyfield's ear would've been much better with his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/0Xt6rv8d #TGIF

— Brad King (@BradKing32) June 29, 2012

Just Mike bein’ Mike! Or something.

How does it go with rape? MT @MikeTyson .@holyfield's ear would've been much better w/ his new BBQ sauce. check it out http://t.co/IUfgQT9e

— Nathan Wurtzel (@NathanWurtzel) June 29, 2012

We’ll let you know if Mike answers that question. Yeesh.

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2012/06/29/friday-fresh-hell-mike-tyson-and-evander-holyfield-make-nice-over-barbecue-sauce/



Well, this should come as a shock to absolutely no one. It seems the U.S. Department of Labor has discovered that hasn’t yet managed to jam its sticky fingers into everything, so it’s set its sights on … farm kids.

The Department of Labor is poised to put the finishing touches on a rule that would apply child-labor laws to children working on family farms, prohibiting them from performing a list of jobs on their own families’ land.

Under the rules, children under 18 could no longer work “in the storing, marketing and transporting of farm product raw materials.”

“Prohibited places of employment,” a Department press release read, “would include country grain elevators, grain bins, silos, feed lots, stockyards, livestock exchanges and livestock auctions.”

Rossie Blinson, a 21-year-old college student from Buis Creek, N.C., told The Daily Caller that the federal government’s plan will do far more harm than good.

“The main concern I have is that it would prevent kids from doing 4-H and FFA projects if they’re not at their parents’ house,” said Blinson.

“I started showing sheep when I was four years old. I started with cattle around 8. It’s been very important. I learned a lot of responsibility being a farm kid.”

Be sure and read the entire article for the full ridiculousness. Personal responsibility? Hard work? Developing skills? But … but … we can’t have our kids learning about such things! If they do, the Nanny State won’t have anyone left to nanny!

Such stupid government overreach is ripe for mockage, and it was only natural that Twitter stepped up to the plate with the #ObamaFarmChores hashtag game.

Punishing farmers in CA's Central Valley by cutting off water just to save a pesky bait fish. #ObamaFarmChores #tcot #twisters

— Gabriella Hoffman (@Gabby_Hoffman) April 25, 2012

#ObamaFarmChores saving the cow manure to power the cars.

— Gregoré (@greg_zemaitis) April 25, 2012

Rounding up the little doggies just took on a whole new meaning #ObamaFarmChores

— Jeff Koch (@KochMonster) April 25, 2012

#ObamaFarmChores? That dog won't hunt.

— Seth (@dcseth) April 25, 2012

Rising at the crack of dawn to collect an unemployment check. #ObamaFarmChores

— Hiram J Goldstein II (@HiramJGoldstein) April 25, 2012

Practicing throwing people under the tractor (much slower than his bus, hard to get the timing right.) #ObamaFarmChores

— Mattphilbin (@Mattphilbin) April 25, 2012

Milking the taxpayers #obamafarmchores

— Blaknsam (@Blaknsam) April 25, 2012

#ObamaFarmChores Installing an acre of wind turbines to power the stove to cook the dog.

— Gregoré (@greg_zemaitis) April 25, 2012

#ObamaFarmChores Piling it higher and deeper.

— Sandy (@VioletTiger2) April 25, 2012

Grant waivers to unionized livestock. #ObamaFarmChores

— Justen Charters (@JustenCharters) April 25, 2012

Have holder investigate why the black sheep has only three bags full of wool #ObamaFarmChores

— Mattphilbin (@Mattphilbin) April 25, 2012

Read more: http://twitchy.com/2012/04/25/obamafarmchores/

The Baffling Priorities Of People Explained… If That’s Even Possible.

Priorities are important. Everyone knows that some things just have to come before others. That’s a given. 

It gets a bit trickier, though, when you try to pin down exactly what those things are. The photos below might seem like the exact opposite of proper priorities, but hear me out here! I’m going to present their side of the story. It all makes sense when you think about it from their perspective…


1.) Back in the day, when people had priorities!

We like to think questionable choices are a new thing, but they certainly aren’t. Child safety? In the old days, they liked to raise their kids tough.

2.) Safety, eating and good sleep are actual priorities.

You could be snarky about this, but then you’d be snarking on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs, which you really can’t do. So not only is this note-leaver recognizing their basic needs, they also offer the practical life advice of Googling.

3.) I mean, what’s really more important?

Look, no one can do anything without the proper pick-me-up, be it government business or…any other kind of business.

4.) Putting things back where they came from is good manners

But not when you’d be risking dangerous food-borne illness making the trek all the way back to the meat department. Those twentyish feet can be fraught with danger for perishable turkey. Better leave it here. And hey, you might inspire someone to make beer-battered turkey burgers.

5.) She’s definitely not pleased about this.

Emotional responses to this seeming slight aside, it’s a safety issue! Should there be an accident, the PS4, not the lady, is taking the brunt of it. Real priorities right here.

6.) Someone said you were supposed to stop partying when you have kids?

Just like the mom at the baseball game, Dad knows how to balance family and social life. Balance is healthy. Look, that baby is learning to balance already! Takin’ after Dad.

7.) It seems like it might be a depressing transition

Of course, someone might have thought of this as clever long-term marketing. The kids who once fondly shopped here for toys can enjoy the same space 20 years later as they shop for their newfound pastime.

8.) Studying is important

Here we have another example of planning ahead. How else will you know how many tests you can brush off and still pass without this calculation. Of course, there might be a correlation between the time spent calculating it and the amount of time actually studying…but I think that requires more studying.

9.) Food is second to connectivity in this household


Well, without a modem and router set up, how can you order more food through Amazon? We’re planning ahead here.

10.) You should know how to balance your accessories

The matte black really brings out the wheels here, and that, my friends, wasplanned. Besides, everyone knows plain black is always in style. So why mess with a classic look?

11.) This kid has a pretty singular idea about what they want to do

Of course, computer games can cover a lot of material. Who needs the hassle of travel, safety precautions and actual danger? Not this kid.

12.) Keeping people up to date at the price of safety

Of course, maybe we’re just reading this wrong. The car is accelerating by itself while its owner looks on helplessly from the driveway. Bu, hey, at least the self-driving car isn’t breaking. It’s staying intact, driver or no. That’s status-worthy.

13.) These guys will go out on a (literal) ledge without much support, but will hold fast to their beer.

Look, if you’re going to challenge yourself like this, or if you need to save your bro from slipping, you’re going to need some liquid courage. It’s a security beer, you guys.

14.) Your health comes first

The ER can be very straining. Better keep your strength up!

15.) It might be defeating the purpose of a pass code…

…or it might be a trap. Enter this code and they’ll know you’re an outsider. Only those with special clearance know the real code. This building’s security is thinking outside the box.

16.) You should spend your money wisely

Well, there’s a lot of tax on game show winnings, right? Might as well use the remainder to get something you like.

17.) Most people focus on academic achievements, but…

Look, as a parent you’re supposed top be supportive, right? So this parent is just looking on the bright side regarding Junior’s accomplishments. Don’t judge!

18.) Sure, it’s a glaring safety oversight…

Bust come on, if you put your hand in that, that’s on you. Think of it as a reminder to always be on your guard for unguarded fan blades. Of course, I’d like to know what priority required the front bit of that fan…

19.) Not passing up a great photo-op should be everyone’s priority

How else are you going to spread the joy of childhood oblivion for years to come? It was funny when you took it, and it’ll be funny, maybe funnier, when they’re old enough to get it.

See, their priorities don’t seem that bad! In fact, a couple of them were kind of (almost) spot on.

Read more: http://viralnova.com/priorities/

These People Have Mastered The Art Of Passive Aggression

Passive aggression can really come in handy as you get older. It’s a great way to get your point across without being outwardly mean to someone, and most of the time, passive-aggressive remarks are hilarious.

Well, if it takes years to learn how to be passive-aggressive, then these people have been at it for quite some time. They are the true masters.

1. This is just rude.

2. Well…it’s true.

3. That’s cold.

4. And that’s nasty.

5. I agree. Let’s be adults.

6. Well, this is a very mean approach to marketing.

7. This would drive me crazy, too.

8. Imaginative and a little bit scathing. Perfect!

9. They should probably just return this.

10. GODLESS! All of you!

11. True that.

12. Well, at least someone is enjoying those leftovers.

var OX_ads = OX_ads || []; OX_ads.push({ slot_id: “537251604_5641890b92387”, auid: “537251604” });

13. You’ll just be extra clean!

14. That’s pretty personal.

15. Better luck next time, chef.

16. The appropriate response to a broken foot and a handful of poop.

17. But do you have proof?

18. Even the gas station is hassling you.

19. Well, that’s what Christmas is all about.

20. Would you prefer to touch poop through a bag, or have it thrown in your face? Your call.

21. Telling it like it is!

22. Well, that’s an eye-opening message.

23. So much better than a trash can!

24. This is the best passive aggression I’ve ever seen.

25. In a word…no.

26. Nothing like a roadway troll.

27. Even Siri is getting in on the action.

28. You’re welcome.

29. It’s annoying for everyone.

30. Passive aggression from beyond the grave.

(via Distractify)

Man, some of these are amazing, aren’t they? I’m sure that the people on the receiving end of these notes took a second to rethink their actions…or they didn’t, and are currently looking forward to the next passive-aggressive installment.

Read more: http://www.viralnova.com/passive-aggressive-awesomeness/