Monday, March 2, 2015

New Yorker magazine still obsessed with people looking at their smartphones

Last October, I wrote about how the New Yorker magazine had run a bunch of covers showing people glued to their mobile devices.
Well, the New Yorker’s fixation with people addicted to their smartphones continues.
Check out the cover of the Nov. 24, 2014, issue and two alternate covers for the Feb. 23 & March 2, 2015, double issue.

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Post-apocalyptic television show trend enters parody stage

With the premiere tonight of “The Last Man on Earth” on Fox, there will be 10 post-apocalyptic themed television shows currently airing.
But the trend could be nearing an end because the latest show is a comedy. Usually hot movie and TV trends run their course when they hit the parody stage.
“The Last Man on Earth” stars Will Forte as the title character. The series has received mostly positive reviews, scoring 77 out of 100 on Metacritic.
Meanwhile, NBC recently ordered a comedy series called “Apocalypse,” which stars Rob Lowe, Megan Mullally and Jenna Fischer.
“The set-up: A comet is on an unavoidable collision course toward Earth and one extended family must navigate the societal chaos that ensues,” Entertainment Weekly reported. “Characters include a foul-mouthed priest, an unhinged white supremacist, a mild-mannered bank manager, a germ-phobic cyber-terrorist, a five-star general and a child who (possibly) rose from the dead.”
Another sign that the post-apocalyptic TV show trend is over: broadcasters have pulled the plug on two post-apocalyptic shows in production.

Check out: List of post-apocalyptic TV shows.

Photos: Advertising for “The Last Man on Earth.”

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Favorite websites in review, part 9

These websites have been featured on Tech-media-tainment. So they bear the TMT stamp of approval.

201. Fake AP Stylebook (
202. Poynter’s Regret the Error (
203. Jim Romenesko on Pinterest (
204. Who Is That Hot Ad Girl? (
205. Coverjunkie (
206. IKEA or Death (
207. Who Said It? Kanye West or Your Creative Director (
208. Cheese or Font? (
209. Headlines Against Humanity (
210. Black Friday Death Count (
211. Maps on the Web (
212. Amazing Maps (
213. Reason (
214. Used to Be a Pizza Hut (
215. Honest Slogans (
216. Our Incredible Journey (
217. Retro Report (
218. Emergent (
219. (
220. Couldn’t Be Reached (
221. Where Bloggers Blog (
222. Thomas Wolfe Was Wrong (
223. BuzzFeed Articles Without the GIFs (
224. Awful Reviews (
225. Art of the Title (

Photos: Netflix logo from Honest Slogans; “Big” movie poster from Awful Reviews.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Fun movie websites: Movie title stills, final images and famous objects

I love movies and I enjoy interesting websites about movies.
Yesterday, I profiled Awful Reviews. Today I’ll discuss six other fun movie-themed websites

Art of the Title

The website Art of the Title appreciates the artistry that goes into making compelling title sequences for movies and TV shows.
Founded in 2007, the website has examined opening credit sequences for such TV shows as “Twin Peaks,” “Game of Thrones,” “Adventure Time” and “The Walking Dead.” It’s covered movie title sequences from the likes of “The Interview,” “Forrest Gump,” “Taxi Driver” and “The Wizard of Oz.”

Movie Title Stills Collection

On a similar note, the Movie Title Stills Collection is a website containing hundreds of main titles from feature films, both classic and recent.
The collection spans from 1920s silent films to present-day blockbusters.

The Final Image

While some film buffs are obsessed with movie opening title sequences, The Final Image focuses on the last shots.

Famous Objects from Classic Movies

Famous Objects from Classic Movies is an online game where you guess the titles of movies based on silhouettes of objects from those movies.
The early stages are easy, but it gets progressively harder.

Google Street Scene

The website Google Street Scene doctors images from movies to make them look like they are photos from the street view feature of Google Maps.
The blog is the work of Tre Baker, according to Entertainment Weekly.

Quiet Earth

Quiet Earth is a website focused on science-fiction and horror movies. It has a particular interest in post-apocalyptic movies.

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Awful Reviews: If movie posters used the worst reviews

The website Awful Reviews takes movie posters and replaces positive reviews from film critics with 1-star reviews from customers on
The results are often hilarious as average Joes and Janes miss the point of many classics or are offended by swear words and other content.
The best posters on the website are for universally acclaimed movies featuring remarks from clueless bumpkins.
Sometimes the scathing amateur reviewers make an interesting point about a movie, even if their arguments are crassly written.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Interesting news media websites: Retro Report, Emergent

Some say the Internet has fostered a golden age of journalism. The Internet supports a host of new media outlets, niche-subject websites and miscellaneous blogs on writing and reporting.
What follows are several websites I have yet to spotlight on Tech-media-tainment, but are worth visiting.

Retro Report

Journalists on average are good at breaking news, but not so great with following up on those stories after their initial coverage.
Retro Report does video segments on old news stories that deserve a second look.
Launched in 2013, Retro Report is a documentary news organization that provides forward-looking coverage of older news stories. The Retro Report team includes veterans of the CBS news show “60 Minutes,” the New York Times and other prestigious journalism outlets.


Social media is rife with false news reports. The website Emergent is trying to be the of breaking news.
Emergent describes itself as “a real-time rumor tracker.” The website “focuses on how unverified information and rumor are reported in the media. It aims to develop best practices for debunking misinformation.”
Emergent is a research project of the Tow Center for Digital Journalism at Columbia University.

Couldn’t Be Reached

A blog entitled “____ couldn’t be reached” documents the many times public officials decline to make themselves available to discuss important issues.
“Whether it’s an investigative, nonprofit newsroom like us, an international outlet like the New York Times, or newer media like Politico or BuzzFeed – when journalists call, officials are choosing to comment less for stories on the record,” the website says.

Where Bloggers Blog

Where Bloggers Blog shows photos of the workspaces of notable bloggers.
My reaction: their desks are way too tidy.

Thomas Wolfe Was Wrong

Author Thomas Wolfe wrote the famous adage, “You Can’t Go Home Again.”
The blog Thomas Wolfe Was Wrong documents the many times people think they’re being clever online when they write that Wolfe was wrong, you can go home again. It’s now an annoying cliche.

BuzzFeed Articles Without the GIFs

BuzzFeed has been an enormous success with its stupid quizzes and click-bait lists. It also runs a lot of articles with animated GIFs.
The website BuzzFeed Articles Without the GIFs shows how terrible those articles are without the GIFs.

Sunday, February 22, 2015

Fun websites: Honest corporate slogans, repurposed Pizza Hut buildings

I come across a lot of interesting websites in my travels online. Over the next few days, I plan to list some of them by category. Today I’ll review a few business-related websites.

Used to Be a Pizza Hut

Used to Be a Pizza Hut documents the many shuttered Pizza Hut buildings that get repurposed for other uses.
“These beautiful structures, most likely now devoid of the table-top Pac Man machines, dot the American landscape,” the website says. “Some provide ethnic food, some, used cars, and a rare few are now municipal buildings. Whatever their current purpose, we can always be reminded of the mediocre pizza that was once served in these establishments. That, and those red plastic cups.”
Mike Neilson, a mobile software designer in Bethel Park, Pa., created the website in 2008 and has documented more than 500 former Pizza Hut buildings since then.
The website was discussed on Brandflakes for Breakfast.

Honest Slogans

Honest Slogans is a funny website that features rejiggered corporate logos and slogans. It portrays products and companies as how they are actually perceived.
Honest Slogans is the work of graphic designer Clif Dickens. He posted some of his favorites on Huffington Post.

Our Incredible Journey

Our Incredible Journey is a blog that documents when one company buys another and then shuts down its services. This happens all the time with Internet companies. The blog is the work of Phil Gyford.
The website was discussed on Laughing Squid.

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