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Ticketmaster issues formal apology to Taylor Swift and her fans for Eras Tour fiasco

2023-03-19 06:16:35

Ticketmaster issues formal apology to Taylor Swift and her fans for Eras Tour fiasco

Look what you made Ticketmaster do.

Ticketmaster issues formal apology to Taylor Swift and her fans for Eras Tour fiasco(图1)

The ticketing service has released a statement addressing the bungled sale of tickets to Taylor Swift's Eras Tour saying, "we want to apologize to Taylor and all of her fans – especially those who had a terrible experience trying to purchase tickets."

SEE ALSO: 'Midnights' lyrics that scream 'written by Taylor Swift'

For those who haven't been following the chaos, here's a brief rundown. Ticketmaster canceled the general sale of tickets to Swift's first tour since 2018 this past Thursday after rescheduling the Capital One cardholder sale. On top of that, the service was unprepared to deal with the volume of fans trying to purchase tickets through the Verified Fan presale this past Monday. The Ticketmaster website crashed ahead of the Verified Fan presale and fans endured hours-long queues with some getting an error message when they finally reached the front of the line.

"We estimate about 15% of interactions across the site experienced issues, and that’s 15% too many, including passcode validation errors that caused fans to lose tickets they had carted," the press release reads.

Ticketmaster blamed "unprecedented traffic" on the site due to bots and fans without presale codes for the issues with the site during the Verified Fan presale.

In their lengthy statement, Ticketmaster runs through the numbers that informed their approach to the Eras Tour. It reports that 3.5 million people registered for the Verified Fan presale — the largest registration in its history. Around 1.5 million fans received presale codes and 2 million tickets were sold during the Verified Fan presale breaking their record for the most tickets sold in a day.

Yesterday, Swift broke her silence on the debacle in a statement on her Instagram story. The Midnights singer wrote, "we asked them, multiple times, if they could handle this kind of demand and we were assured they would."

Hopefully, the story of Swift and Ticketmaster might be ending soon.

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    • for providing registered early years childcare

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    1. Upgrade your Zoom account

    2. The tweet gives you the gist

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    4. "I'm looking at a lot of people who just got the shit kicked out of them the whole day."

    5. Maybe, possibly, potentially, Tony Hawk called in(Opens in a new tab)?

    UPDATE: June 3, 2020, 1:27 p.m. EDT Hawk confirmed on Twitter that it was not him on the call.

    6. This one has a Curb Your Enthusiasm ending added

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    8. "You are public servants. Not soldiers."

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    In the meantime, you can sign a petition to catch Instagram's attention.

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    View this post on Instagram
    (opens in a new tab) (Opens in a new tab)

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    Hopefully if Co—Star learned anything from this, it's to not meme the fight to end inequality.

    Mashable has reached out to Co—Star for comment and will update if received.

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    Huffman reflected on Reddit's history regarding its policies on racism, highlighting where the company has made progress and where it's fallen short. He specifically called out Reddit's failure to take action on The_Donald(Opens in a new tab), a pro-Trump subreddit that became a breeding ground for violent content.

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  • I May Destroy You is a defining moment for on-screen portrayals of consent and sexual violence

    I May Destroy You is a defining moment for on-screen portrayals of consent and sexual violence

    Content warning: This review contains discussion of rape and sexual violence.


    You won't be able to shake I May Destroy You from your thoughts. After watching, you'll close your laptop, or turn off your television, but I guarantee you this: it will stay with you. Created by Chewing Gum writer Michaela Coel, this new 12-part BBC One/HBO drama tackles the intersection of sexual assault, consent, and race in a radical way that is rarely, if ever, seen on screen.

    Episode 1 begins with Arabella (Coel), a young millennial writer living in London, pulling an all-nighter in a last minute attempt to finish the book she's been writing. When she takes a break to meet up with friends (setting a one-hour alarm for herself), the night changes course. The following day, she has no recollection of how she got back to her desk, or how her phone screen got smashed, or why there's blood pouring from a gash on her forehead. Arabella is disorientated, confused, and grappling with a disturbing flashback of someone being raped. That someone, she later realises, was her.

    These events unfold in a way that is infused with striking realism — and that is no accident. In Aug. 2018, while delivering the McTaggart lecture at the Edinburgh Television Festival, Coel said she was raped when she was writing Season 2 of Chewing Gum. "I was working overnight in the [production] company's offices; I had an episode due at 7 a.m. I took a break and had a drink with a good friend who was nearby," said(Opens in a new tab) Coel. When she regained consciousness, she was typing Season 2. "I had a flashback. It turned out I’d been sexually assaulted by strangers. The first people I called after the police, before my own family, were the producers."

    In the press materials sent by the BBC, Coel makes reference to the real-life roots of the story. "All in all, the hardest thing was not getting distracted in wonderment at the confounding reality of having turned a rather bleak reality into a TV show that created real jobs for hundreds of people," she said.

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    In those first few episodes of I May Destroy You, Coel explores an aspect of sexual violence that gets little attention: unacknowledged rape(Opens in a new tab). Psychologists use this term to describe sexual violence that fits a legal description of rape or assault, but is not labelled as such by the survivor. For the first two episodes, Arabella doesn't realise she's been assaulted. Even when talking to a police officer about that night, she urges caution in the police officer's interpretation of her disturbing flashback, the images she couldn't shake from her mind. Coel brings to life an element of assault survivors' experience — the difficulty of realising that you've been raped because the reality of rape is so different to how it's portrayed on screens and in the media(Opens in a new tab).

    Later in the series, when Arabella's agents introduce her to another writer, Zain, to assist somehow in the writing of her book, the two end up having sex. What Arabella doesn't realise, though, is that Zain removes the condom midway through — a violation that is also known as "stealthing,"(Opens in a new tab) a form of sexual assault.

    Arabella's story isn't the only remarkable part of this show. Her best male friend Kwame (Paapa Essiedu) has a storyline that explores black masculinity, internalised homophobia, and male experiences of rape. Meanwhile, Arabella's other best friend Terry (Weruche Opia) endures a racist microaggression during an audition for a supposedly empowering advert when a white casting director asks her to take off her wig so she can see her natural hair.

    This show is coming to our screens at a pivotal moment in history — as protests continue across America and parts of the globe against racism and police brutality, following the police killing of George Floyd, who died after an officer kneeled on his neck for nearly nine minutes.

    The contents of I May Destroy You has the power to challenge stereotypes and misconceptions about who rape happens to, and what sexual violence really looks like. That act of service could not be more necessary.

    I May Destroy You debuts on HBO on Sunday, June 7, and on BBC One on Monday, June 8. Both episodes will be available on BBC iPlayer from Monday.

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    Forrest Fenn claims someone found the treasure he hid in the Rocky Mountains 10 years ago

    A multimillion-dollar treasure intentionally tucked away in an undisclosed, incredibly remote part of the Rocky Mountains has reportedly(Opens in a new tab) been found — and the story behind the loot is perhaps wilder than you can imagine.


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    Now, according to Fenn himself, the chase for the treasure is over. He confirmed to Money(Opens in a new tab) that it had been found in the past couple of days.

    "It was under a canopy of stars in the lush, forested vegetation of the Rocky Mountains and had not moved from the spot where I hid it more than 10 years ago," Fenn wrote on his website(Opens in a new tab). "I do not know the person who found it, but the poem in my book led him to the precise spot. I congratulate the thousands of people who participated in the search and hope they will continue to be drawn by the promise of other discoveries. So the search is over."

    But, and this is a pretty big but, we've still yet to see the treasure. And we don't know the identity of the person who apparently found it.

    “The guy who found it does not want his name mentioned. He’s from back East,” Fenn told the(Opens in a new tab) Santa Fe New Mexican(Opens in a new tab).

    Fenn told the paper the person sent him a picture of the treasure to confirm the find, but Fenn declined to send a copy of that photo to the paper. So... a lot of questions remain.

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    “He stole my solve,” she told the paper. “He followed and cheated me to get the chest.”

    So, again, a lot of questions remain.

  • During a pandemic, protest livestreams are more important than ever

    During a pandemic, protest livestreams are more important than ever

    Protests against police brutality continue around the country, but not everyone who wants can participate. Whether immunocompromised, living with someone in a high risk group for COVID-19, or simply too far away to attend a protest, people around the world have found their own way to engage: livestreams.


    Leigh Wallace, an 18-year-old in Mississippi, goes through chemotherapy every other week to treat Hodgkin’s lymphoma. The treatment hasn’t affected her immune system as much as it has other patients, Wallace said, but her parents are wary of allowing her around other people, even friends. While treatable, Hodgkin’s lymphoma limits the body’s ability to fight infection. The number of new coronavirus cases(Opens in a new tab) is increasing in many states, and the world is bracing itself for a "second wave," expected(Opens in a new tab) to hit this autumn.

    But Wallace couldn’t just sit at home while her peers marched against police brutality. Her parents have a tight grip on her bank account, so she couldn’t donate to a bail fund or community organization. While she signed petitions pushing for prosecution for officers and advocating for defunding law enforcement, Wallace wanted to be more involved.

    “News stations and YouTubers can take the footage and later edit them to fit their personal agenda.”

    She began watching Instagram livestreams of the protests to stay informed. In a Twitter DM, she said that because she was viewing raw, unedited footage, she could get a clearer picture of what’s actually happening. Watching the protests live allows viewers to see police using disturbing force against peaceful protestors for themselves.

    “I think the news and even some YouTube creators are incredibly biased,” Wallace said. “News stations and YouTubers can take the footage and later edit them to fit their personal agenda.”

    Similarly, Celina Juarez, a 21-year-old restaurant employee in Los Angeles, felt that news outlets weren't focusing on what mattered. Juarez lives with her grandparents and didn't want to risk spreading the coronavirus to them, since the elderly are at high risk.

    "I feel that the news is showing more of the looting and less of the police brutality against peaceful protest when, based on every livestream I've tuned into, it's really the opposite," Juarez said in a Twitter DM.

    While the protests have been associated with looting and rioting, multiple videos(Opens in a new tab) show black protestors shutting down white agitators attempting to graffiti storefronts and steal merchandise. When the protests began in Minneapolis in response to the death of George Floyd, a black man who was killed by a white police officer, Juarez and Wallace felt that news coverage focused on the looting rather than law enforcement escalating violence against peaceful protestors.

    In addition to presenting a clearer picture of the the protests in support of Black Lives Matter, livestreams also provide crucial information for those who attend.

    Elijah Daniel, a YouTuber with 568,000 subscribers and 446,000 Instagram followers(Opens in a new tab), attended numerous protests in Los Angeles last week. He's also been broadcasting the protests on Instagram Live, where tens of thousands of viewers watched police tear gas gatherings, shoot rubber bullets into crowds, and arrest peaceful protestors who were out after Los Angeles' controversial curfews.

    I watched Daniel's protest livestream last week because I had several friends who were also marching in Hollywood. It seemed peaceful from wherever Daniel was marching, but the chants of "No justice, no peace" were broken up by panicked comments warning viewers that police were tear gassing protestors a few blocks ahead. Madison Beer, another influencer who's been actively attending protests and was marching ahead of Daniel, tweeted that cops were beginning to block in protestors well before curfew.

    As soon as I read the livestream comments, I called everyone I knew at the protests to warn them. One narrowly avoided the gas and rubber bullets, which law enforcement began deploying just minutes after he decided to take side streets out of Hollywood.

    This weekend, I attended the massive candlelight vigil for George Floyd and other black victims of police brutality, which took place only blocks from where police had arrested(Opens in a new tab) thousands of peaceful protestors the week before. During the drive over, I watched the livestream broadcasted by Black Lives Matter Los Angeles to keep tabs on police presence. Watching the protests live is a matter of safety.

    Watching protest livestreams is a matter of public safety. Credit: David McNew / Getty Images
    "I know it's easy to watch a video on the internet, but to watch it in real time is on a whole other level."

    Daniel's viewers are also using the livestream to open up conversations about police brutality and privilege with their families. Claire-Louise, a 21-year-old customer service agent in Belfast, Ireland, can't attend protests in Ireland because there aren't any close enough to be accessible. She's been showing Daniel's livestreams, as well as other screen recorded livestreams, to her family members who she claims are "a bit backwards in their mindset."

    "I know it's easy to watch a video on the internet, but to watch it in real time is on a whole other level," Claire-Louise said in a Twitter DM. "I get happy when I see the peacefulness but I get angry and anxious when I see the brutality and just blatant racism."

    Influencers and celebrities continue to fall out of public favor through this period of civil unrest. From posting well intentioned but ill informed black squares to their Instagram accounts to getting arrested for looting(Opens in a new tab), as Jake Paul did, celebrity culture is cracking. But those who use their platforms for activism, as Elijah Daniel and Halsey have, are inspiring a generation of viewers to join the Black Lives Matter movement.

    "Even though I can't actually be there, it at least makes me feel like I am," Wallace said. "Seeing how many people are at the protests, plus thinking about how many people are watching livestreams, makes me think that in time something may actually happen."

  • OKCupid adds Black Lives Matter badge and profile questions about racial inequality

    OKCupid adds Black Lives Matter badge and profile questions about racial inequality

    On Thursday, OKCupid announced that it's rolling out a #BlackLivesMatter(Opens in a new tab) badge in a dozen countries. Users can obtain the badge by answering yes to the question, "Do you want to support the #BlackLivesMatter movement by adding a badge to your profile?"


    Since badges won't actually do anything to solve racism, OKCupid has also donated $50,000 to the ACLU, Black Girls Code, Fair Fight Action and the NAACP. The app will also donate a million dollars in advertising space to black civil rights organizations.

    SEE ALSO: How single people have been dealing with the 'sex ban' in England

    In addition to the badge, OKCupid has added matching questions related to racial injustice and inequality. Users can answer whether they protest; whether it's okay to silently support racial equality; how they plan on addressing racial inequality (say by donating or protesting); and whether they find it important that their date supports racial equality.

    OKCupid racial inequality question Credit: okcupid
    OKCupid how will you address racial inequality question Credit: okcupid

    In the past week, over 100,000 users have responded to the new questions. The majority said it's not okay to silently support equality, according to OKCupid's blog post. Seventy percent are protesting for racial equality.

    This isn't the first time OKCupid has created badges and questions around social justice. They did so with supporting Planned Parenthood(Opens in a new tab) and marriage equality as well(Opens in a new tab). While the badge could be seen by some as virtual signaling, the questions do allow users to dig deeper into a potential match's commitment to racial equality — which is a step in the right direction.

    Related Video: Want to donate to help the Black Lives Matter movement? Here's how.

Random articles


  • Suni Lee blames social media for her bronze medal on uneven bars

    Suni Lee blames social media for her bronze medal on uneven bars

    After Suni Lee won the all-around gold at the Tokyo Olympics, her social media following blew up. The Associated Press reported(Opens in a new tab) that she added 950,000 followers on Instagram — a 390 percent increase. And she saw similar increases on TikTok and Twitter(Opens in a new tab).


    That kind of limelight can be daunting. The 18-year-old gymnast was the favorite to win gold heading into Sunday's uneven-bars final, but didn't complete her routine with perfection. In the end, she took away bronze, with Belgium's Nina Derwael and the Russian Olympic Committee's Anastasiia Iliankova winning gold and silver, respectively.

    Uneven-bars is a talent that Lee is particularly proud of — something she cherishes, she told the AP. "So when I mess it up, it really sucks."

    And Lee partially blames social media for winning bronze instead of gold, telling People(Opens in a new tab)(Opens in a new tab) that she "got distracted and lost focus a little bit when I won the gold medal." Now, she plans to "stay off social media for a little bit."

    "I'll probably cool down a little bit and just focus on what I need to do especially because we're coming to the end," she said. "I want to just do the best I can and end it off good."

    Lee told People on August 1 that she plans to delete Twitter because "it's just so easy to see everything." That said, Lee has been tweeting since her bronze win(Opens in a new tab). She added that she might not delete Instagram because she "can't really see what people say," and she'll definitely keep TikTok.

    "TikTok is my getaway app, it's just so fun," Lee told People, who has already posted videos(Opens in a new tab) following her bronze medal win.

    On Tuesday, Lee competed on beam, finishing in fifth place, ESPN reported(Opens in a new tab), behind Simone Biles who won bronze. It was Biles's first event back since she withdrew from the team all-around final last week to prioritize her mental health.

    Related Video: How to permanently delete your social media

  • David Hockneys painted Vogue cover is a soothing moment in your day

    David Hockneys painted Vogue cover is a soothing moment in your day

    Why have one Vogue cover when you can have 14 different ones?


    That's the plan for the August issue of British Vogue, a special edition exploring the theme of "reset" — especially fitting for a world still experiencing lockdowns and shelter-in-place orders in many countries amid the coronavirus pandemic.

    The covers feature original artwork by the UK's great artists and photographers(Opens in a new tab), including David Hockney, Nadine Ijewere, Tim Walker, Nick Knight, Lubaina Himid, Mert Alas, David Sims, Marcus Piggott, Jamie Hawkesworth, Juergen Teller, Alasdair McLellan, Martin Parr, David Bailey, and Craig McDean.

    Each cover image captures a local landscape cherished by the artist. For celebrated artist David Hockney, that special landscape is a wheat field near Fridaythorpe, East Yorkshire. For photographer Nadine Ijewere, that place is Carbost, Isle of Skye.

    Credit: David Hockney

    The August issue also features an essay called "All Across the Land" by Helen Macdonald, author of H is for Hawk, on the theme of "reset."

    SEE ALSO: Hikes in the time of coronavirus: What you need to know

    "The familiar patterns of our lives have been broken, the future is unknowable, and all of us are searching for signs and wonders, for reassurance, for hope, for things that make sense to us when everything seems desolate," wrote Macdonald. "We are beginning to view nature through new eyes."

    "I have been surprised by the sensuousness that nature has given me: the green fragrance of lanes near my home, the brush of wind on skin, the pleasure of planting and watering," she continued. "Without human contact, it’s all I have, but it feels, right now, enough. In lockdown many of us have rediscovered gardening, or found ourselves focusing on the wellbeing of houseplants on our windowsills."

    Credit: Nadine Ijewere

    Edward Enninful OBE, editor in chief of British Vogue, said in a statement that the issue is "not only beautiful and poignant, but also highlights that at the core of everything is our planet."

    "I very much hope 2020 signals a reset in our relationship to nature," he added.

    Read the full feature in the August issue of British Vogue, available via digital download and on newsstands Friday July 3.

  • When We Were Young Festival canceled its Saturday performances last minute making crowds even more e

    When We Were Young Festival canceled its Saturday performances last minute making crowds even more emo

    When We Were Young music festival attendees are not okay (they promise).


    Yesterday (Oct. 23), the inaugural When We Were Young music festival that featured mid-2000s emo artists like My Chemical Romance and Paramore, canceled its Saturday performances last minute due to high winds. Variety(Opens in a new tab) reports that some attendees found out about the cancellation as late as 10:30 a.m. when doors were set to open only half an hour later.

    The remaining dates of the festival on Sunday, Oct. 23, and Oct. 29 "are moving forward accordingly." Ticket holders who purchased tickets through the festival's ticketing service will receive a refund within 30 days, but the festival did not offer attendees the option to transfer their ticket to one of the other two dates.

    SEE ALSO: This emo music festival is a personal attack on millennials

    "When We Were Young Festival organizers have spent the last several days proactively preparing the festival grounds for a windy Saturday. The National Weather Service has now upgraded their Saturday forecast to a High Wind Warning, including dangerous 30-40 mph sustained winds with potential 60 mph gusts," the festival’s statement reads. "Under advisement of the National Weather Service and the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, we have no other choice than to cancel today’s When We Were Young Festival. The safety of our fans, artists and staff will always be our top priority."

    Many bands, like We The Kings(Opens in a new tab) and The All-American Rejects(Opens in a new tab) tried to make the best of the situation by hosting pop-up shows in Vegas, but these events didn't have the capacity to accommodate all the festival attendees.

    The festival's lineup sent social media users into a frenzy when it was announced thanks to its nostalgia-inducing acts and similarity to Warped Tour. The festival's Saturday cancelation had Twitter once again ablaze with attendees sharing their disappointment and airing their grievances.

    It wasn't just attendees who got in on the conversation. Curious onlookers enjoyed the spectacle of adults decked out in their finest emo attire wandering around Vegas with nowhere to go and others cashed in on the moment by making jokes and memes.

  • The Onision documentary is overshadowed by its own controversy

    The Onision documentary is overshadowed by its own controversy

    A new documentary series investigating Onision, a YouTuber accused of abusive behavior and grooming by multiple women, brings the story to a wider, less online audience. But the series premiere was marred by criticism from the very YouTube community that brought the story to mainstream light.


    Onision: In Real Life is a three-episode docuseries that premiered on Discovery's streaming platform discovery+ on Jan. 4, 2021. It looks into Gregory (sometimes James) Jackson, known online as Onision. The now 35-year-old began posting videos in 2007, garnering a largely teenage following with his shocking sketches, viral music videos, and inflammatory, misogynistic rants. (YouTube has not banned him from the platform in spite of complaints from other users.)

    Onision has also displayed a pattern of pursuing relationships with his much younger fans, prompting other YouTubers to post videos calling to deplatform him. YouTubers known as commentary creators have posted hours of content about Onision and his alleged abuse, stitching together overlapping timelines through screenshots, clips from now-deleted Onision videos, and correspondence with survivors.

    At least six women(Opens in a new tab) have accused Onision of abuse, and several were interviewed on Chris Hansen's YouTube livestream, Have a Seat With Chris Hansen, in late 2019. While his series undoubtedly alerted a wider audience to Onision's alleged predatory behavior, many in the YouTube community have expressed reservations about Hansen's intentions in bringing the story to a mainstream distributor like discovery+. In fact, Hansen's deal(Opens in a new tab) with Investigative Discovery deterred a number of survivors from appearing in Onision: In Real Life.

    Onision has denied allegations of predatory behavior and abuse.

    Onision's downfall

    The first two episodes of Onision: In Real Life focus on Onision's alleged abuse of his much younger partners and persistent harassment of women online. It features interviews with Onision's estranged father, Randy Daniel, who sheds light on his son's violent past and alleges that Onision attacked him. YouTuber Eugenia Cooney, who was the target of a relentless online harassment campaign led by Onision, also appears in the series to discuss his inappropriate fixation on her appearance and eating disorder. The series paints Onision as something of a charismatic cult leader who used his popularity and online following to coerce young women into romantic relationships, levying his audience against them when the relationships ended.

    "The entirety of this journey in the last 12 years has really been me thinking that I was totally alone in it."

    "The entirety of this journey in the last 12 years has really been me thinking that I was totally alone in it," Shiloh Hoganson, a singer known mononymously as Shiloh, told Mashable.

    Shiloh began communicating with Onision as a 17-year-old fan. Onision, then 25, divorced his wife and formally introduced Shiloh as his girlfriend in a YouTube video weeks before her 18th birthday. She alleges that over the course of their relationship, he emotionally tormented her so severely, she had a stress-induced seizure that he recorded and posted footage of online. Onision: In Real Life includes scenes from now-deleted YouTube videos that show Onision recording Shiloh in the shower, forcing her to shave her head, and joking about abusing her. By the time their relationship ended for good roughly a year later, Shiloh had been hospitalized for suicide ideation, harassed by Onision's fans, and developed sepsis following a miscarriage.

    Shiloh, an alleged Onision victim and past Canadian teen pop star, Credit: Discovery Channel

    "When I found out there were others like me, [it] kind of ended a long 12 years of me thinking that there was nobody else that could understand what I was going through," Shiloh continued. "I felt a little less crazy for sure."

    Onision's disturbing pattern of relationships with fans continued. One survivor alleges that the YouTuber and his husband, Kai Avaroe, invited her to visit them and coerced the newly 18-year-old into group sex. Another survivor, who began messaging Avaroe when she was 15 and briefly lived with the couple due to a volatile home life, alleges that Avaroe and Onision sent her explicit photos and made sexual comments about her when she was still a minor. Avaroe, who was also accused of grooming minors with Onision, was 17 when he began dating then 26-year-old Onision. They married a month after Avaroe's 18th birthday, roughly nine months after Onision and Shiloh broke up for good.

    Given his past hosting To Catch A Predator, Hansen's coverage of Onision was initially met with enthusiasm from commentary creators, YouTube audiences, and the survivors themselves, who hoped that his mainstream influence would push YouTube and law enforcement to take action against Onision. Hansen's interview series gained popularity and culminated in an attempt to confront Onision outside his home in Washington, prompting the YouTuber to file for a restraining order against creator Daniel Sulzbach (known as Repzion) and the wrong Chris Hansen(Opens in a new tab). Sulzbach first raised concerns about Onision and his treatment of Shiloh in a 2011 video(Opens in a new tab). He has since made dozens of videos updating his followers about Jackson's behavior, as well as exposed several other YouTubers as predators.

    Onision dropped the lawsuit against both parties in early 2020.

    Have a Seat With Chris Hansen sparked the 2019 survivor-led online campaign #DeplatformPredators, which called for social media sites to ban Onision in an effort to prevent him from directly interacting with his young fans. Onision has since been banned from Twitch and Patreon(Opens in a new tab) for violating terms of service, but he continues to post monetized content on YouTube and OnlyFans. He's still able to interact with his fans via Twitter and Discord. The Pierce County Sheriff's Department in Washington, where Onision and Avaroe reside, received a flood of phone calls "from around the country" reporting the couple. Newsweek obtained a call log from the police department that states "the FBI has opened a case and are reviewing his [Onision's] video content" following public concern.

    But public favor turned against Hansen as his YouTube series dealt with its own controversy.

    Viewers lose trust in Hansen

    A survivor sent Hansen's "web producer," Vincent Nicotra, her laptop with alleged evidence of her relationship with Onision and Avaroe to send to the FBI. In now-deleted tweets(Opens in a new tab) from January 2020, she said Nicotra never passed it on to law enforcement, further stalling the investigation against her abuser. Viewers and other YouTubers also raised concerns(Opens in a new tab) about Nicotra harassing survivors, copyright striking creators who posted videos criticizing the interview series so their videos were either demonetized or removed, and doxxing those he disagreed with. Hansen was slow to take action against Nicotra, but did eventually fire him and apologized for Nicotra's misuse of the YouTube copyright striking system. Nicotra was arrested(Opens in a new tab) for aggravated harassment in September 2020; Hansen tweeted(Opens in a new tab) that there was "not much" he could say as Nicotra was under an active investigation.

    A statement released by Hansen's volunteer livestream moderation team cast further doubt on Hansen's ability to lead the investigation into Onision's alleged abuse.

    "Ultimately Chris Hansen is well-intentioned and out of his depth of knowledge in regards to the internet and online culture."

    "Chris has also been approached about Vincent and his conduct a number of times, and has said that he would like to fire him. Unfortunately, Chris has said that he also needs to figure out how to replace him so that this can happen," the moderation team statement said. "We are unsure of the truth of this statement, but are in mutual agreement that ultimately Chris Hansen is well-intentioned and out of his depth of knowledge in regards to the internet and online culture."

    That's a sentiment widely held in the YouTube commentary community. Most creators who have been covering Onision for years believe that Hansen has good intentions exposing creators like Onision and, more recently, Blood on the Dance Floor singer and alleged child groomer Dahvie Vanity(Opens in a new tab), but that he lacks a fundamental understanding of YouTube itself. Mista G Dubs, a commentary creator, described(Opens in a new tab) Hansen fumbling Nicotra's online actions as "'boomer'ing it up." Another creator, iNabber, described Hansen as "the guy to take down Onision," but noted that Hansen's hesitation to fire Nicotra hurt his own credibility.

    "At the end of the day it's not going to cause any good for this case...The facts are this has damaged Chris Hansen's investigation," iNabber said in a video(Opens in a new tab) recapping the situation. "At the end of the day it was Chris who chose to work with these people, it was Chris who chose to use these methods. Maybe he used these methods before, but YouTube is a whole different thing to a television show."

    Whose story is this to tell?

    YouTubers, and consequently their viewers, voiced further skepticism about Hansen's intentions in covering the story when a Mel(Opens in a new tab) profile of the journalist reported that Investigation Discovery "bought the rights" to the Onision story. Mel later clarified that Hansen "signed a deal with Investigation Discovery to do a TV series on the Onision story," and Hansen tweeted that nobody is "selling rights to a story" in producing this documentary. But he hasn't divulged the details of his deal with Investigation Discovery, nor how much he's making from appearing in this series. The clarification added to the profile sparked a debate within the YouTube community about whose story this was to tell in the first place, and the ethical dilemma of raising awareness while profiting off the survivors' trauma.

    Following the laptop debacle and Nicotra's dismissal, several survivors who were interviewed for Have a Seat With Chris Hansen declined to be interviewed again for the documentary. One tweeted(Opens in a new tab) about feeling betrayed that Shiloh and Regina, another woman whose involvement with Onision and Avaroe allegedly began when she was a minor, agreed to appear in Onision: In Real Life. Another asked(Opens in a new tab) her Twitter followers to stop messaging her about Onision, as she was "trying to distance" herself from that part of her life.

    Because of the survivors' refusal to take part in the documentary, several commentary creators declined to partake as well, including Sulzbach. In a video posted in September 2020, Sulzbach voiced his support for the survivors and his concerns about Hansen's involvement in the project.

    "Several of the victims said they did not want their stories/trauma told on national TV and I was told their stories would be included regardless of their consent or not," Sulzbach said in an email to Mashable. "Also Chris Hansen isn't the person who he promised to be in delivering justice to the victims of Onision. Most of the victims have disassociated with Chris Hansen because they felt lied to, betrayed, and exploited."

    Chris Hansen faced backlash from the YouTube community following his Onision investigation. Credit: Discovery Channel

    Hansen, to his credit, does acknowledge that he's an outsider. In a Zoom call with Mashable, he described the backlash to the documentary as a "clash of cultures" between traditional and digital media. It's the survivors' "right," Hansen said, to not have to rehash their traumatic experiences by appearing in the documentary. But Hansen still believes that bringing the story, regardless of whether or not the survivors wanted it told, to a larger audience was "inevitable."

    "There's been no justice, so why not do this? Why not pursue it at the next level?"

    "There's been no justice, so why not do this? Why not pursue it at the next level?" Hansen said.

    He added that the allegations against Onision haven't been taken as seriously as they should have been over the last 10 years because they were dismissed as YouTube drama instead of potentially criminal abusive behavior. He also blamed YouTubers for keeping Onision relevant by continuing to take his bait and making more content about him, and pointed out that their criticism seems hollow, as many still post monetized videos about the Onision case.

    "Part of the reason that some are not taken seriously is because they engage in this drama channel culture where they will do anything and see anything and drag somebody's name to get clicks and clout," Hansen continued. "So by attacking the messenger, in this case, they can garner clicks and clout, which means money. So anyone who's being critical because [we're] generating some sort of profit from this project is guilty of it by doing what they're doing."

    Hansen and discovery+, however, do have the added backing and financial security of the television network behind them. YouTubers, for the most part, independently source, record, edit, and secure advertising. And if they're sued or face a copyright strike, they're on their own.

    Who gets credit?

    Although he's far from the first person to publicly condemn Onision as an alleged abuser, Onision: In Real Life paints Hansen as the whistleblower who brought the story to light. In the first episode, internet culture reporter Steven Asarch appears to credit "Chris Hansen's YouTube story" as the catalyst for the internet-wide push to deplatform Onision. In a tweet posted after the first episode's premiere, Asarch clarified that the comment was meant to be sarcastic and that he hoped later episodes would include his reservations about Hansen.

    Edwin Costa, a YouTuber who posts on the channel Edwins Generation, was the only commentary creator who actually appeared in the documentary. In a livestream(Opens in a new tab) responding to the backlash, Costa said he agreed to be interviewed because "if it was any other documentary" asking him to discuss a topic he's covered as extensively as the Onision story, he "wouldn't decline." He also explained that he amended his release so he wouldn't be included in any promotional materials, but leaked screeners exposed him to online criticism before he could explain his involvement on his "own terms." Costa added that he criticized Hansen during his interview, as well as expressed reservations about Shiloh, who was embroiled in her own controversy last year for being hostile toward Twitter users who questioned her and the other survivors. But like Asarch, Costa hasn't seen the third and final episode, which streams next week, and isn't sure whether any of his criticisms were included.

    Ultimately, Hansen's involvement in the documentary not only soured its reception in the YouTube community, but also kept key voices from being included. Onision: In Real LIfe at least blurs the faces of the survivors who declined to appear in the documentary, but it still includes clips of their appearances on Onision and Kai's channels, as well as clips of their interviews with Hansen. Though doing so is legally protected under fair use exceptions, many in the YouTube community find it morally reprehensible. The inclusion of those interviews and other clips by creators who declined to be interviewed added to the belief that Hansen, and by extension Investigative Discovery, valued the story over the survivors who were actually part of it.

    The series premiere backfired even more when its publicists sent screeners to commentary creators, nearly all of whom declined interviews, and asked them to publicly post their thoughts. Many were predictably critical. Some were offended that the series expected free promotion. For all their criticism of the documentary series and Shiloh's involvement in it, commentary creators affirmed that they still believed the survivors. Nobody conflated their disapproval of the series with siding with the alleged abuser in question. Onision, though, has been using the backlash against the series to discredit survivors and dismiss their allegations as "hashtag Me Too fake victims."

    "Discovery could have bypassed Chris Hansen entirely," YouTuber Jaclyn Glenn said in a recent video(Opens in a new tab) reacting to the documentary. She was interviewed for Have a Seat With Chris Hansen, but like many commentary creators, does not appear in Onision: In Real Life. "He's not an integral part of the story at all. He came in at the last second, basically hijacked it, and said it was his."

    At the end of the day, Onision: In Real Life will alert a more offline audience to not only Jackson's behavior, but also to the insidious nature of potential online predators. It's far from an ideal delivery, and its reputation will always be damaged by the controversy surrounding its production.

    That being said, this documentary will not be the end of the Onision saga. Jackson still has a monetizable online presence through YouTube and OnlyFans, and the reception to this documentary shouldn't overshadow the push for those platforms to take accountability for enabling him. Hansen told Mashable that any criminal investigation into Onision will likely take months more, especially as the COVID-19 pandemic derails normal procedures, but added that YouTube needs to ban him entirely.

    Shiloh said she doesn't agree with all aspects of "cancel culture," but acknowledged that it exists for a reason. To protect vulnerable children from ever experiencing what she went through, she added, the onus should be on YouTube itself to hold its creators accountable when their users raise concerns. Until then, she'll keep sharing her story regardless of the delivery or platform.

    "I used to just scream it out into the internetverse, as I used to say, but as soon as I started realizing that I didn't really owe anybody an explanation, I can genuinely say that I don't really feel pressured to talk about it," Shiloh concluded. "It's mostly now just something that I live with, and something that's part of my healing [is] talking about it. I'm definitely not going to go quiet about it anytime soon."

    UPDATE: Jan. 15, 2021, 10:50 a.m. PST Onision responded via Twitter DM to dispute allegations of predatory behavior and abuse, and sent links to blog posts on his own website as evidence.

    Onision has denied interviews in past coverage, and has instead responded to requests for comment with links to his blog posts and paid platforms.

  • The 7 best Zoom and work-from-home moments of 2021, so far

    The 7 best Zoom and work-from-home moments of 2021, so far

    At this point — what, a year and half into the pandemic? — you'd think the world would be accustomed to Zoom. And, for the most part, we all have gotten better at video chatting and working from home.


    But better isn't perfect. While last year was replete with Zoom screwups, 2021 has seen far less failure. Still, halfway through the year, we managed to scrape together seven of our favorite Zoom and work-from-home fails and funny moments. Here they are.

    1. That lawyer who accidentally showed up to virtual court with a cat filter on

    Remember Rod Ponton, the Texas lawyer who went viral when he couldn't figure out how to remove a cat filter during court? How could you forget?

    2. This teacher and his lovely dog Lila, who really caused an issue

    I'm glad to know Lila is doing fine now. Poor girl.

    3. The politician who video called into a debate on a distracted driving law while...driving his car

    Andrew Brenner, a Republican state senator in Ohio, might get the award for the dumbest possible Zoom mishap. He supported a law for stricter penalties for distracted driving while clearly driving and participating in the video call. Brenner seemingly tried to hide where he was with a shoddy virtual background...which did nothing to conceal his seatbelt. It's just comically bad.

    4. A rocky grilled cheese tutorial

    OK, so this one is just my fantastic colleague Nicole Gallucci getting schooled on making a grilled cheese by the one and only Guy Fieri. It might not be a huge mishap, but it is a funny work-from-home moment.

    5. There's no other way to say this: a live streamed butt injection

    Miami Herald crime reporter David Ovalle documented perhaps the strangest multitasking ever: appearing in court and getting a butt injection simultaneously.

    6. OK, another strange one in Miami from Ovalle

    You've got to respect that he would show up, to be honest.

    7. And finally, Jason freakin' Sudeikis

    The wonderful, hilarious actor called into the Golden Globes in a frankly sick tie-dyed hoodie. This was, in no way, a Zoom fail. But it was a wonderful work-from-home moment that I wanted to celebrate.

  • How to find an account on TikTok

    How to find an account on TikTok

    So you've made your TikTok account. What now? Maybe you want to follow some of your friends that are already on the app?


    The easiest way to see the content you want to see is by interacting with content you like and following creators who make that content. Maybe you have some people in mind already. That's great! Now, how do you find them?

    There are a couple ways to do this, and in this article we'll cover everything from simply searching names and usernames, to syncing your contacts and Facebook friends.

    Search from the Discover page.

    1. Navigate to the Discover page by tapping the magnifying glass icon at the bottom of your screen.

    Navigate to the TikTok "Discover" page. Credit: andy moser / tiktok

    2. Type the name or username of the creator you're looking for in the search bar.

    Let's say you're looking for Miley Cyrus. You can sort results by users, videos, sounds, and more.

    If you're looking for Miley Cyrus, type her name into the search bar at the top. Credit: andy moser / tiktok

    3. Tap the account you're looking for, and you'll be taken to their profile. Done! Tap the Follow button to follow that creator.

    Search from your profile page.

    1. Instead of tapping "Discover" at the bottom of the screen, tap "Me".

    2. Tap the "Find friends" icon in the top left corner of the screen.

    "Find friends" using the button on the top left corner of your profile page. Credit: andy moser / tiktok

    3. Type the name or username of the account you're looking for in the search bar.

    Finding a TikTok account using the "Find friends" button on your profile page. Credit: andy moser / tiktok

    4. Tap the account you're looking for and you'll be taken to their profile. Tap the "Follow" button to follow that creator.

    Find friends via contacts or Facebook

    You can also use the "Find friends" button to find TikTok accounts from your contacts or Facebook friends.

    To do so, you'll have to go into your phone settings and allow TikTok access to your contacts. For Facebook, the app will prompt you to sign in to your Facebook account, displaying a warning that says "This allows the app and website to share information about you" like your Facebook name and profile picture.

    Either method involves potentially widening your TikTok network and sharing your account with others. Additionally, you'll be handing over some of your personal data to TikTok, so before you decide to follow the next steps, make sure this is something you comfortable in doing.

    Find friends via contacts

    1. Go to your profile page and tap the "Find friends" button in the upper left corner.

    2. Under the search bar, tap "Find" next to "Contacts."

    3. You'll be prompted to open your settings and allow TikTok access to your contacts. Tap "Open settings" and ensure TikTok has access to your contacts.

    4. Navigate back to your TikTok app, and you'll see a list of accounts TikTok was able to find from your contacts.

    5. Tap "Follow" on all the accounts you want to connect with.

    Find friends via Facebook

    1. Go to your profile page and tap the "Find friends" button in the upper left corner.

    2. Under the search bar, tap "Find" next to "Facebook friends."

    3. TikTok will prompt you to sign in to your Facebook profile, which will allow TikTok access to information about your Facebook account. Tap "Continue" to see more information and sign in.

    4. You should see a page that says "TikTok will receive the following info: your name and profile picture and friends list."

    5. Read the warning at the bottom of the page. It will say: "By continuing, TikTok will receive ongoing access to the information you share and Facebook will recored when TikTok accesses it."

    6. If you want to continue, tap "Continue as [your name]."

    7. You'll see a message that says "Facebook wants to open "TikTok." Tap "Open."

    8. Tap "Find" next to "Facebook friends" just as you did before.

    9. You'll be prompted to sync your Facebook friends list with your TikTok account to find your friends. Tap "Sync" to continue.

    10. Tap "Follow" on all the accounts you want to connect with from your Facebook friends list.

    If you want to remove your synced contacts or Facebook friends, go into your privacy settings on TikTok and tap where it says "Sync contacts and Facebook friends" (which, of course, you can also use to sync or re-sync friends and contacts). Then, just tap either "Remove contacts" or "Remove Facebook friends," which will turn off syncing and remove the data you previously synced with your TikTok account.

    Tap "Remove" again when prompted, and you're done.

    You can follow all kinds of accounts on TikTok. Follow celebs and influencers. Follow your friends. Follow your friends who may happen to be celebs and influencers. You can even follow brands, if you must.

    The more accounts you follow, the more content you'll curate in your TikTok space. So get out there and start following.

  • TikTok is making Euphoria fanfiction now

    TikTok is making Euphoria fanfiction now

    TikTok might as well be Euphoria High with the way users are eating up the spicy second season of HBO's teen drama. It’s like the way Twitter reacts to Succession, but with better edits and more glitter. Between swapping fan theories and stanning normal girl Lexi and drug dealer Fez's onscreen chemistry, Euphoria fans have been busy taking up space on TikTok this week.


    Other notable trends include "It's just hay fever" and letting a filter determine who your celeb parents are. 

    The girls are talking about Euphoria again.

    Euphoria has been inescapable on TikTok lately, inspiring a whole host of TikTok trends. 

    Creators have been using the song "Formula" from the Euphoria soundtrack to speculate everything — from what colleges they think the characters would attend(Opens in a new tab) to what skincare they would use(Opens in a new tab) to what their Pinterest boards would look like(Opens in a new tab)

    The Euphoria obsession doesn't end there. TikTok users have also been loving the "Which Euphoria character are you" filter. It's been used over 25,000 times. While nothing beats the look of disappointment on someone's face when it lands on series villain Nate, it's since evolved into a way for people to write their own Euphoria fanfics. TikTokkers are now using it to insert themselves into the narrative, posing various questions(Opens in a new tab) like "who am I dating?" and "who is my best friend?" and letting the algorithm decide their fates. And some of these proposed plots are more interesting than the actual show!

    SEE ALSO: TikTok enrolls in 'Euphoria' High

    The best Euphoria-inspired trend turns beloved character Fez into a meme. In the Season 2 premiere, the normally soft-spoken drug dealer confronts Rue after a particularly intense encounter with a new dealer, saying, "Why you acting like that shit was fun Rue? For real. You pissing me off, acting dumb as fuck right now. God damn, all this smiling and laughing and shit." TikTok users are adding that audio to describe annoying situations.

    The clip was first posted by @paidsosa(Opens in a new tab) with the caption "pov: me anytime my man yells at me." Now, nearly 18,000 videos have been uploaded using the sound. Some highlights include @hudaislost's video(Opens in a new tab) captioned, "guys after you make them go watch a romantic movie with you," which garnered over 4 million views and 1.5 million likes, and @ashleybonneville34's video(Opens in a new tab) that reads, "when your drunk friend thinks it's a good idea to run away from you when you're supposed to be taking care of them." 

    Sad, but true. Credit: TikTok / hudaislost

    Whereas some TV fans congregate on Tumblr or Twitter, TikTok is seemingly the go-to place to discuss Euphoria. 

    It’s just hay fever

    My favorite trend of the week finds TikTokkers lying about crying. This trend utilizes the scary "Crying Eyes" filter, while also using an audio in which one British child asks another British child, "What's the matter?" To which the other British child responds: "Just hay fever." The filter has been used nearly 80,000 times and audio nearly 60,000 times. 

    The premise of these videos is simple: The creator pretends that their crying eyes are caused by hay fever — aka allergies — instead of the situation described via the text on the screen. Combined, the tiny British voices and unfortunate situations make a hilarious trend. Take @ambulancelife's video(Opens in a new tab) for example: It reads, "when you tell your mom about a girl and get ghosted the next day." Yikes! 

    It's just hay fever. Credit: TikTok / ambulancelife

    As always, TikTok loves to use humor to share cursed experiences. 

    Please adopt me

    TikTok filters are winning this week! The "PLEASE ADOPT ME" filter cycles through celebrity names to reveal your celebrity parents. The filter was created a week ago by @allangregorio(Opens in a new tab), a Brazilian digital artist, and has since been used over 215,000 times. 

    The filter is a breeding ground for hilarious results and reactions. User @tim.stvnsn(Opens in a new tab) got Jimmy Fallon as both their parents and then proceeded to photoshop some silly family portraits. Their video got over 2 million views and over 483,000 likes. 

    Credit: TikTok / tim.stvnsn
    Credit: TikTok / tim.stvnsn

    The idea of your celebrity parents isn't a new one. Fans love to claim their favorite artists as their mom or dad, and fans of both Taylor Swift and Harry Styles (including yours truly) refer to themselves as children of divorce since the two pop stars split in 2013. I got Kanye West and Matt Damon, which is literally so cursed! Please don't adopt me.

    West Elm Caleb

    It wouldn't be this week on TikTok without a mention of "West Elm Caleb," a New York City furniture designer who has come to represent a certain type of man on dating apps: a serial dater who ghosts, sees multiple women at the same time, and sends nonconsensual nudes. Many women have had experiences with men like Caleb, and they banded together on TikTok to share their grievances.

    However, the situation quickly spiraled out of hand when the FYP mob mentality took hold. West Elm Caleb was doxxed, and the West Elm Instagram was flooded with comments demanding he be fired. Here's your daily reminder that holding someone accountable is not the same as ruining their life.

    SEE ALSO: TikTok's 'West Elm Caleb' saga was never about Caleb

  • How to remove your ex from your digital life

    How to remove your ex from your digital life

    Break-ups are always difficult, but in this era of everything being done on a screen there's the added displeasure of separating yourself not just physically from your ex, but digitally.


    The upcoming iOS 15 will make it easier to remove your ex(Opens in a new tab) from past photos with the "Feature This Person Less" option. It's a great step, but it's not yet available — and doesn't account for the myriad ways your former flames can pop up online.

    Here's how to digitally remove your ex from your life:

    Retrain your algorithms by blocking or unfollowing

    While it may seem dramatic to block or unfollow your ex, remember that Instagram or Facebook or other social network's algorithms are used to you interacting and speaking to your ex a lot and vice versa. Removing them is the easiest and most effective way to retrain your feed, said Jacqueline Lowy, CEO and co-founder of private intelligence consulting firm Sourced Intelligence.

    To truly rework the algorithm, don't search their profile — as tempting as it is. Searching tells your device that you're interested in seeing more of them, Lowy explained. The same goes for Google searches.

    A third tactic to train the algorithm is to temporarily mute friends and family that frequently share photos of them. This tells the site that you don't want to see these people, and your feed will populate with different posts.

    Audit your social media and other accounts

    Digital lifestyle expert and radio host Kim Komando(Opens in a new tab) recommends changing your passwords to any accounts if there's even just a chance your ex has them.

    Here are quick guides for some accounts where you may currently share passwords:

    • How to change your Netflix password — Make sure the "Require all devices to sign in again with new password" checkbox is checked, said Komando. You'll have to sign in again, but there'll be no more mooching.

    • How to change your Gmail password

    • How to change your Instagram password

    Komando recommends changing answers to security questions, as well. "Even if they weren’t a great partner," she said, "chances are they remember some basic information about you."

    Some services, like iCloud, would give your ex access to sensitive info like photos and texts, so make sure to remove them there too. If you shared accounts for paid services, Komando said to double-check and contact providers immediately to remove your ex.

    Check your smart home devices

    Change the password to your router and check the access to smart tech such as locks and even smart speakers like Alexa. These devices can be accessed remotely, so it's possible your ex can connect to them even if they're not in your home.

    "I’ve listened to countless stories of exes connecting to WiFi from outside of their old partner’s home and bugging the router," Komando warned. Unfortunately it's legal to hack into someone's WiFi(Opens in a new tab), and if it does happen the hacker (your ex) will have access to your data.

    Wipe memories from your devices, even if you can't from your brain

    While we can't Men in Black(Opens in a new tab) our minds, we can do so from our tech.

    While we have to wait for the iOS 15 "Feature This Person Less" tool, iOS 14 has "Suggest Fewer Memories Like This."(Opens in a new tab) Tap the For You tab in Photos, then select a Memory. Tap the three dots, then either select Delete Memory or Suggest Fewer Memories Like This.

    Google Photos has similar functions where you can hide people & pets(Opens in a new tab) and even hide dates(Opens in a new tab), so anniversaries won't be a problem. In the Photos app, tap on your profile photo, go to Photo Settings, then choose Memories. Tap "Hide people & pets" and choose who you'd like to hide, and the same goes for dates.

    On Facebook, go to the Memories page(Opens in a new tab), then navigate to Hide People on the left hand side.

    hide people from Facebook memories Credit: mashable

    Type your ex's name in the field:

    blocking someone on Facebook Credit: mashable

    Feel free to type any other names of third parties that may bombard you with photos of your ex, too. Then "click save and say goodbye to notifications showing your ex at last year’s July 4th BBQ," as Komando said. You can also hide dates as well.

    Following all these tips won't guarantee you won't see your ex; algorithms and functions aren't perfect. But, if you truly want to go no contact, these steps can help.

  • Tesla to start selling solar roof only with Powerwall battery

    Tesla to start selling solar roof only with Powerwall battery

    Tesla is changing the way it sells its solar roof and solar panels.


    According to Tesla Technoking and Imperator of Mars (check his Twitter bio(Opens in a new tab)) Elon Musk, the company will only sell its solar products bundled with its Powerwall battery starting next week.

    According to Musk, solar power from Tesla's solar roof and panels "will feed exclusively to Powerwall. Powerwall will interface only between utility meter & house main breaker panel, enabling super simple install & seamless whole house backup during utility dropouts."

    Musk also said that Powerwall is getting upgraded via a software update next month. He says that Powerwall 2 has "better than advertised" peak and steady power capability, and now that it has enough operational data, Tesla can unlock these higher capabilities. Musk claims the power increase may be bigger than 50% at an ambient temperature of 30 degrees Celsius (86°F).

    According to Electrek, which reported Tesla's halt on taking orders for Powerwall(Opens in a new tab) without other solar products last month, the change has to do with the popularity of Powerwall(Opens in a new tab). The outlet claims that Tesla's production capabilities simply cannot match the demand, which is why the company is tying Powerwall to its other solar products.

    SEE ALSO: Tesla hikes prices, again

    Given that Powerwall was already unavailable without solar panels or solar roof, the fact that you soon won't be able to buy the panels or roof without a Powerwall isn't very surprising. The upgrade to Powerwall itself is notable, as the gains may be significant, though Musk does say they will depend on the individual unit's production date.

  • Theres a massive ship stuck in the Suez Canal, but at least its delivering memes

    Theres a massive ship stuck in the Suez Canal, but at least its delivering memes

    The massive container ship lodged in the Suez Canal may be disrupting global supply chains for weeks to come, but we'll at least have memes to float us through.


    Ever Given, a vessel nearly twice as long as the canal is wide, ran aground on Tuesday(Opens in a new tab) due to low visibility amid high winds and a dust storm. Clocking in at 1,300 feet and 224,000 tons, Ever Given "might take weeks" to be removed, according to(Opens in a new tab) Boskalis CEO Peter Berdowski. Boskalis is a Dutch company trying to dislodge the ship. The Suez Canal Authority has suspended traffic, it said in a statement(Opens in a new tab) on Thursday, until Ever Given is freed. Efforts include pulling it with eight tugboats and digging at the ship's keel with a comically small excavator.

    The Suez Canal is a crucial manmade waterway running through Egypt that connects the Mediterranean to the Indian Ocean, effectively providing a trade route between the East and the West. Before the canal was built, shipments used to sail around the coast of Africa, which now adds up to a week in shipping time. Roughly 12 percent of the world's trade runs through the canal, and world powers have tried to control the canal throughout history(Opens in a new tab) in an effort to influence trade.

    The canal has been modernized and expanded over the last 70 years, but it was no match for Ever Given on a windy day.

    Here's some satellite footage of Ever Given, still firmly wedged in place.

    And here are some photos of the excavation effort released by the Suez Canal Authority. Onlookers are not particularly optimistic.

    With the canal blocked off, meanwhile, shipping companies may resort to circumventing Africa. Reuters(Opens in a new tab) reported that A.P. Moller Maersk, the largest shipping container line and vessel operator in the world, is "considering" diverting its less timely goods around Africa, and sending the more time-sensitive cargo via train and airplane.

    Twitter users got a laugh out of the antiquated shipping routes.

    The canal's prolonged shutdown could cause "significant disruptions to global trade, skyrocketing shipping rates, further increase of energy commodities, and an uptick in global inflation," JPMorgan strategist Marko Kolanovic told CNBC(Opens in a new tab).

    That being said, you have to admit that the situation is just absurd enough to be funny. Memes about the Suez Canal are dominating social media.

    Reddit(Opens in a new tab)
    Reddit(Opens in a new tab)

    Ever Given remains lodged in the canal, but at least the memes are good.