The Word On...

The Word On...

April 22, 2015 2:45pm

The Internet has gifted us the ability to find out about all kinds of stuff we'd have never found before. However, we're still not sure if that's a good or bad thing. Have a sampling of this week's Word On... recipes, and find out what fits your taste and what leaves a bad taste in your mouth.

Don't worry, there are no right or wrong answers. We all know everyone is entitled to their own opinion on the 'net.

Hamilton In Hot Water Champagne

Two-time Formula One World Champion Lewis Hamilton is in some hot water, as anti-sexism groups and many across social media have voiced their displeasure over a photo of Hamilton spraying champagne on a podium girl, who didn’t seem to be enjoying it, following his win at the Chinese Grand Prix. The Daily Mail spoke with Roz Hardie, CEO of Object, an anti-sexism group, who, in part, said, “It’s unfortunate that a great victory has been marred by what appears to be selfish and inconsiderate behavior.” Fox Sports has more:

According to the Daily Mail, Roz Hardie, CEO of Object, an anti-sexism group, is calling on Hamilton to apologize as “the photographs appear to show that the woman is not just being splashed, but that the champagne is being very specifically directed into her face, which does not look like a voluntary piece of horseplay on her part.

“If this is the case we think Lewis Hamilton should apologize for his actions and think carefully about how he behaves in the future. For most people, it would be apparent that she is not enjoying it. It is surely a very difficult position to be a grid girl and she would have had little option but to stand there and take it. That is something of which he should be aware. But instead, he appears to have abused her position.”

Read more here.

 

One Shining Moment

The New York Knicks, an absolute train wreck of a franchise, who even the Zen Master Phil Jackson couldn’t save this year, finished a putrid 17-65 this season, good enough for the second-worst record in the NBA. They are an embarrassment to the entire state of New York. Fans of the Knicks, rightfully so, are unhappy with the franchise. One fan, or maybe not a fan—we don’t know—put together a montage of the very best “lowlights” on the 2014-15 Knicks season. It’s hilarious!!!

 

The 701 Supermoto Is Coming

Husqvarna announced earlier this week that they will release the 701 Supermoto microsite in the near future. Details are scarce on the new machine, but they did release a pretty sweet teaser video to accompany the announcement. More information will be release in the coming weeks and months. Stay tuned!

 

Going Medieval

Russia—known for its vodka and being extremely effing cold—has recently introduced us to something that may be even better than vodka—armored knight jousts. (We joke, nothing can beat Russian vodka.) According to Bleacher Report, Russian mixed martial arts promotion M-1 Global began putting on “armored knight jousts as in-between-fight spectacles in 2014.” It’s become so popular that there are plans for “entire events knight fights.” This is crazy—and super cool. Bleacher Report has more, and check out the video below.

The jousts expanded to one-on-one sword-fighting—ostensibly between two trained “knights” knowledgeable in the ways of armored combat. These two fighters would step into the Octagon garbed in plate mail and proceed to smash each other in the face with shields and swords as an official kept track of things.

Seeing as violence, like fashion, is cyclical, the exhibitions became wildly popular, to the point that M-1 plans to devote entire events to knight fights.

Check out the entire article here.

 

Twitter Tries to Curb Trolling

Twitter, the cesspool of the Internet, where people feel the need to whine and complain about everything and typically exhibit racist and sexist comments on the regular, is trying to control the aforementioned “trolls,” according to BuzzFeed. I use Twitter a lot; it’s easy to catch up on news quickly, but even for the internet, it’s out of control, which apparently the company is aware of. BuzzFeed reported earlier this week that the company has, “expanded the language in its rules about what constitutes a violent threat. As of today, April 21, these now include not just specific direct threats, but also “threats of violence against others or promot[ing] violence against others.” To enforce this and other rules, Twitter’s enforcement team can now lock users out of their accounts for a limited time — basically a time-out.” A time-out??? I just find that funny. BuzzFeed with more:

The other update Twitter made today makes it more difficult for abusive speech to be heard, without expressly banning it. The company says it is testing a new feature to automatically “identify suspected abusive Tweets and limit their reach.” It is looking at things like how old the account is (people often set up new accounts with the purpose of harassing others) and how similar the tweet is to others that it has already flagged for abuse. It says that this will not “affect your ability to see content that you’ve explicitly sought out.”

While Twitter did not provide specific detail on how this works, it might mean limiting what shows up in a person’s mentions. In an interview with BuzzFeed News in February, Costolo laid out one such scenario, noting that “people should have a right to speak freely on the platform, but you don’t necessarily have a right to have your mentions of me show up in my mentions timeline with whatever you choose to say, and your response is that I can call you whatever I want to call you.”

Read more here.

 

You Thought You Owned Your Tractor

But, you really don’t, according to Wired. The case is kind of bizarre and a little complicated, but John Deere—the world’s largest agricultural machinery maker—says that farmers don’t technically own their tractors “because computer code snakes through the DNA of modern tractors, farmers receive “an implied license for the life of the vehicle to operate the vehicle.” They aren’t the only companies making such claims. From Wired:

Several manufacturers recently submitted similar comments to the Copyright Office under an inquiry into the Digital Millennium Copyright Act. DMCA is a vast 1998 copyright law that (among other things) governs the blurry line between software and hardware. The Copyright Office, after reading the comments and holding a hearing, will decide in July which high-tech devices we can modify, hack, and repair—and decide whether John Deere’s twisted vision of ownership will become a reality.

Over the last two decades, manufacturers have used the DMCA to argue that consumers do not own the software underpinning the products they buy—things like smartphones, computers, coffeemakers, cars, and, yes, even tractors. So, Old MacDonald has a tractor, but he owns a massive barn ornament, because the manufacturer holds the rights to the programming that makes it run.

It’s a complicated story, so check out the entire piece here.

 

Do. Not. Eat. This.

Fans at Kauffman Stadium, home of the Kansas City Royals and Kansas City Chiefs, were recently treated to dollar dog night at the stadium. Sweet deal, right? ONE-DOLLAR HOT DOGS!!!! Notorious cheap-ass Jason Weigandt could buy at least two without feeling shame. Well, this is what fans got instead….

Credit: @RoyalAK47 
Credit: @RoyalAK47 

The thing is, this isn’t the first time Aramark, the concession food giant, has come under investigation. Just a few months ago, a former Aramark employee reported dozens of violations committed by the company. (More here.) This is ridiculous. How do they get away with this? They basically served fans dumpster dogs. More from Vice Sports.

Amazingly, this comes just a few months after an Aramark employee at Kauffman called attention to the disgusting food prep conditions at the stadium. Jon Costa worked for Aramark (which also runs concessions at Arrowhead Stadium) and blew the whistle on the group because, among other things, it "broke rules about storing foods at the right temperatures, hand washing, and had insects and rodents present." Costa says Aramark refused to address the issues, thereby forcing his hand to go public.

Subsequent inspections revealed violations in 20 of 26 reviews at both stadiums. Last month, Costa was fired. On Friday, fans were basically served trash.

 

This week in Fast Food 

In a perfect transition, let’s check in on fast food. According to Time, Burger King co-founder David Edgerton, who is worried about having to pay employees a decent wage, is firing back, essentially saying, “Hey, we aren’t doing this. If we do, no more dollar menu.” More from Time:

Edgerton, 87, spoke to TIME on Wednesday as fast-food workers around the world staged protests and strikes—some at Burger King locations—as a part of the “Fight for $15” campaign, which calls for a $15 per hour minimum wage and the right to unionize.

“What’s going to happen, really, is you’re going to see less and less of the quick and dirty kind of places,” said Edgerton, who founded the fast food giant with James McLamore in 1954 and now serves on the board of Avantcare, a company that makes nutritional products to help treat addiction. “You’re not going to be able to run these places [paying workers] $15 an hour or whatever it will be.”

What??? No more "quick and dirty places"? I don't realize that was a bad thing. Read more here.

In other news, McDonald’s franchisees are concerned about the comapany’s new turnaround plan and are letting it be known it will fail. From Slate:

Another wrote: "The future looks very bleak. I'm selling my McDonald's stock. The morale of franchisees is at its lowest level ever." Added a third: "We will continue to fall and fail." The franchisees' six-month outlook for the company's U.S. business was the worst in more than 11 years of the survey.

Franchisees operate about 90 percent of the roughly 14,000 McDonald's locations in the U.S. They were surveyed after a summit in which executives from the company's headquarters in Oak Brook, Illinois, unveiled their plans for the company's future. Those plans include adding upscale, customizable burgers to the menu and improving food quality.

More from Slate here.

 

This Looks like it Hurt

[Credit: Deadspin]

 

Citizen Journalists

Citizen journalism has always been a thing. Since the rise of social media, though, it’s become a more easily found thing. In fact, social media—sites like Twitter and Reddit—is where a lot of people get their news. Lightbox Entertainment and Xbox Entertainment Studios recently released the documentary The Thread, which examines “how technology and social media have transformed news coverage, bringing advantages but also dangers,” with a focus on the tragic Boston Marathon bombing in 2013. Watch the trailer below and check out more from Newsweek:

“I think the film is about a moment in time that the Boston bombings catalyzed, where journalism found itself at a crossroad.... As a society, we’re wrestling with speed of information and ease of information versus real journalistic integrity. I think what happened in the days after the Boston bombings was a really interesting microcosm of what is becoming a very big issue.”

 

Money, Money, Money

Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather, two titans in the dying world of boxing, are set to finally square off on May 2. Although the fight would have been much better say, six years ago, it should still be the biggest event in boxing history. And the two are set to make a TON of cash on it. According to GQ, Pacquiao will rake in $100 million (!!!) from the fight, with Mayweather clearing a cool $180 million!!!! For ONE fight. Will Leitch has a very cool article on not only the Mayweather-Pacquiao numbers, but also on the state of PPV.

The fight on May 2, considered by some to be the last time we'll see these legends ever fight (until the inevitable less-compelling, more expensive, rematch), is expected to fly past all those, even at that price. Which is leading to paydays that will make your eyes explode.

Pacquiao is expected to pocket $100 million for the fight, which would easily be the biggest boxing payday ever if it weren't for the $180 million Mayweather is expected to net. $180 million! That's more than LeBron James has earned his entire career. That is more than any player in the history of the NFL has made other than Peyton Manning. That is more than the value of every MLS team, and the GDPs of three countries. For one single fight, win or lose.

Read the full article here.

 

SlamBall Is Alive…

In China, anyway. The sport, which is basically basketball played on tramplines, rose to prominence in the US in the early 2000s and even had a professional league that aired on Spike TV. Now, the game is picking up steam in China. Vice Sports recently went and check it out.

 

Gawker Plans to Unionize

The NY Times reported last week that employees at Gawker Media, the parent company of websites like Gawker, Deadspin, and Jalopnik among others, are planning to unionize. This is kind of a big deal, at least I think it is. More from the Times:

Mr. Nolan, who has worked at Gawker since 2008, said in a phone interview that the effort to organize was still in its early stages, a point he also made in his blog post. But he added, “It’s been something that a lot of us have probably thought about in an abstract way for a long time.”

On Wednesday evening, about 30 Gawker Media employees, representing most of the Gawker blogs, met with union organizers over sandwiches and beer at the Writers Guild in New York to discuss the unionization process and hash out their concerns about the company. The meeting lasted more than two hours.

“It was a very good discussion, and everybody got to say their piece,” Mr. Nolan said. “At the end of it, the interest level was really strong.”

Check out the full article here.

 

Media Changes

Richard Deitsch, who covers media for Sports Illustrated, recently paneled a group of sports media members—ranging from ESPN to Fox Sports to NFL Network—and asked them: If given Commissioner-like power to make one change, addition or subtraction in the sports media, what would you do and why? The results are pretty interesting. Most of you will enjoy this answer.

Brian Anderson, Turner Sports broadcaster

If I had sports media commissioner-like powers the first thing I would do, after ordering a private plane with racing stripes of course, would be to shorten every commercial break in every sport by 30 seconds. To make up for lost revenue I'd create a 30 second "Presented by..." window. A premium window coming back from commercial with a sponsors presence (graphic, verbal mention, push-back, etc). This will allow the viewing/listening audience back inside the venue quicker, creating better pace and flow to all games. I believe the length of timeouts and delays in play are getting to a frustrating level for athletes and fans inside the venue.

Check out the entire piece on SI.com.

 

More from Matthes

Earlier this week, my colleague Steve Matthes sent me the following text: “U HAVE to run this video in ur dumb column.” After buttering me up with such kind words, he sent said video with text and his Classic Podcast submission. I guess he realized this dumb column gets more views than his. Suck it, Steve.

Anyway, here is the video and podcast. Enjoy!

Who doesn't want to see a squirrel trying to hide a nut inside a dogs fur? C'mon!!! This is the best video ever…. look at his long arms! Who knew squirrels had those types of extremities? That's a reach that Mayweather would be proud of. And I love the dog's attitude where he's all "Hey look, this rodent is pawing at me and trying to stick a nut in my fur…ahhhh whatever man…"

CLASSIC PODCAST

It's been a while, but we're back with a classic podcast! This week we have former factory Suzuki mechanic Marshall Plumb who won a 125 national title with Guy Cooper back in the day. Marshall also worked for Brian Swink and Larry Ward, which would probably be enough to qualify for danger pay in some states. Today, he works for Dunlop, and you'll find him changing tires for all the stars' bikes in the pits. Marshall's a Canadian who also worked for ROSS "ROLLERBALL" PEDERSON when he was up there, and that, ladies and gentlemen, is the best reason to listen to this podcast; he tells some Ross stories that are epic.