Tag Archives | Trends

New York Entangled In Yarn Graffiti

5058097151_67d198ca0eThe New York Times reports on “yarn bombing”, the softest, coziest form of urban vandalism. Leave your bike parked for too long and it could end up like the one at right, which has been chained for months in front of my friend’s store:

“Street art and graffiti are usually so male dominated,” Ms. Hemmons said. “Yarn bombing is more feminine. It’s like graffiti with grandma sweaters.”

Yarn bombing takes that most matronly craft (knitting) and that most maternal of gestures (wrapping something cold in a warm blanket) and transfers it to the concrete and steel wilds of the urban streetscape. Hydrants, lampposts, mailboxes, bicycles, cars — even objects as big as buses and bridges — have all been bombed in recent years, ever so softly and usually at night.

It is a global phenomenon, with yarn bombers taking their brightly colored fuzzy work to Europe, Asia and beyond. In Paris, a yarn culprit has filled sidewalk cracks with colorful knots of yarn.

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Why Do Girls Wear Pink?

pink-and-blue-gender-Mellins-baby-food-ad-7 No, it’s not an immutable law of nature. In the 1920s, retailers began encouraging pink (a strong color) for boys and blue (a dainty one) for girls, before the trend reversed after World War II. For centuries prior, both boys and girls wore white dresses.

In light of hysteria over a photograph in J. Crew’s new catalog depicting a mother painting her son’s toenails pink, Smithsonian Magazine explores how we got to this point:

For centuries, children wore dainty white dresses up to age 6. “What was once a matter of practicality—you dress your baby in white dresses and diapers; white cotton can be bleached—became a matter of ‘Oh my God, if I dress my baby in the wrong thing, they’ll grow up perverted,’ ” Paoletti says.

The march toward gender-specific clothes was neither linear nor rapid. Pink and blue arrived, along with other pastels, as colors for babies in the mid-19th century, yet the two colors were not promoted as gender signifiers until just before World War I—and even then, it took time for popular culture to sort things out.

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Police Warn Of Growing Teen ‘Vodka Tampon’ Use

34051Time to check in on the latest youth trends: teens (both girls and boys) are increasingly using liquor-soaked tampons as a novel and stealthy means of getting drunk. A number of Facebook pages have popped in honor of the practice, called “slimming”. Ah, kids with their crazy fads! The Local enlightens on the scourge every parent should be most worried about:

Police in southern Germany warned this week of a dangerous new form of alcohol abuse among teens – using tampons soaked in vodka to get drunk quickly and hide the smell. The practice poses grave health risks, they said.

In early March a 14-year-old girl collapsed during a street festival in Konstanz, apparently highly intoxicated from using a vodka tampon, the paper reported. Youth researchers have since found out that this form of alcohol abuse is trendy in the region.

The trend arose among teens in the United States, where it is known as “slimming.” But it has reportedly caught on in Scandinavia and other places where alcohol is difficult for young people to acquire.

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Is Twitter Suppressing Discussion Of WikiLeaks?

Ah the irony: social networking sites were heralded as the savior of democracy, transparency, and change — but perhaps that’s only the case when the villain is conveniently a U.S. enemy such as Iran.

Today, there are growing grumblings that Twitter is attempting to suppress the spread of WikiLeaks discussion by removing it from “trending topics” lists. Starting with a volcanic surge in popularity on November 28, the hashtag #WikiLeaks has been white-hot on Twitter. And yet, it hasn’t made a blip on Twitter’s Trends list, which has been occupied by far less popular topics. Has Twitter caved to anti-WikiLeaks pressure à la PayPal and Mastercard? There’s a full explanation at Student Analysis.


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5 Media Trends To Watch

Via Mediapunk:

Here are the five media trends I’m watching and will focus on in future articles on this site:

  • Sources and advertisers going direct
  • Context is King
  • Journalist as brand
  • Reporting as service
  • Media companies as technology companies
  • I have a heavy emphasis on journalism, but most of these actually apply to other media fields as well.

    Sources and advertisers going direct

    Dave Winer coined the the phrase “sources go direct” to describe how organizations and individuals are routing around traditional media by using their own web sites and social media. Jay Rosen, as I recall, used the phrase “advertisers going direct” as well.

    Another expression of this trend comes from Tom Foremski: Every Company is a Media Company.

    But this is by no means limited to companies – activists, watchdog groups, whistle blowers, politicians, sporting leagues (which I guess are usually companies), etc. are now media organizations and all individuals are now media personalities.

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    10 Web Trends To Watch In 2010

    By Pete Cashmore for CNN:

    Editor’s note: Pete Cashmore is founder and CEO of Mashable, a popular blog about social media. He is writing a weekly column about social networking and tech for CNN.com.

    (CNN) — As 2009 draws to a close, the Web’s attention turns to the year ahead. What can we expect of the online realm in 2010?

    While Web innovation is unpredictable, some clear trends are becoming apparent. Expect the following 10 themes to define the Web next year:

    Real-time ramps up

    Sparked by Twitter, Facebook and FriendFeed, the real-time trend has been to the latter part of 2009 what “Web 2.0” was to 2007. The term represents the growing demand for immediacy in our interactions. Immediacy is compelling, engaging, highly addictive … it’s a sense of living in the now.

    But real-time is more than just a horde of new Twitter-like services hitting the Web in 2010 (although that’s inevitable — cargo cults abound).

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