Barbie Fights Back + Facebook Turns 10

As Predicted: Conservatives Bash Coca-Cola Ad

“’America the Beautiful’ should only be sung in American!”

Facebook Turns 10

Remember a prehistoric world before Facebook; when MySpace walked the earth…

Gay-Marriage Ban Challenged in VA

It’s becoming harder and harder to be a redneck these days; a U.S. district judge will begin considering a reversal of Virginia’s gay-marriage ban.

Web Companies Reveal NSA Requests

During the first half of 2013, between 15,000 and 15,999 Microsoft accounts, 9,000 and 9,999 Google accounts, and 5,000 to 5,999 Facebook accounts were subject to requests.

Barbie’s Designer Defends Barbie’s Crazy Proportions

Designer fires back about generations of insecure body image issues.

will.i.am on His Levi’s Collab & Why He Isn’t Trying to Change the World

Fact: will.i.am can’t stop working. A founding member of Grammy-winning hip-hop/pop group the Black Eyed Peas, the 38-year-old multihyphenate’s growing list of titles include songwriter, entrepreneur, DJ, record producer, and philanthropist. His latest venture is EKOCYCLE—a eco-focused initiative with Coco-Cola that drives  brands to produce items made in part from recycled materials. The latest brand to jump on board is Levi’s, who crafted a limited-edition pair of 501 jeans made of plastic bottles.  

Cleverly named the WasteLess jean, the design comprises of 29% post-consumer recycled content and uses and average of eight recycled PET plastic bottles per pair. (Peep the promo video here.) This past week, Levi’s kicked off the game-changing collab with a party at LA’s Haus of Strauss showroom, hosted by the brand’s VP of Design Jonathan Kirby and Will himself. I sat down with the artist to hear more about the collab, how he tames his creativity (I mean, the dude is everywhere), and why attempting to change the world will get us nowhere. 

What is your earliest memory of recycling?
"It was actually when I was an adult, living on my own. My girlfriend said ‘we need to put the bottles and plastic in this container so we could go to Thrifty’s and turn them in.’ Then we started to collect cans and send them to the liquor store to get money. We were poor."

How did you make this partnership happen?
"I came up with the concept in 2008. In 2009, I made the deck and pitched it to Coke and all there executives in Atlanta. The concept was simple: take the word "COKE" and turn it around, so it’s "EKOC" and replace the "C" with different things that related to our society, such as ‘conscious, cycle, community, center, collaboration, consumption’ and so on. It took a few years before we turned it into something real and launched with our partners, including Levi’s." 

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How do you maintain your creativity energy?
"I try to control my brain. It wants to do everything, so I have to start taming it. Because I could be, like, ‘I want to design lamps!’ and then suddenly start working on that. No, I need to cool out and focus on one thing at a time."

Whose creative energy do you admire?
"There are a few people, like Philippe Starck. He’s on another level and does a bunch of stuff. I think he’s an amazing guy. Kanye West is dope, too. I really admire a few fashion folks like Christian Louboutin and Vivienne Westwood."

Speaking of fashion, would you ever want to design your own collection?
"No, because fashion’s hard. Hats off to all the designers out there because that stuff is really, really hard. You’re thinking so far ahead knowing that it’s not forever. Like, when you’re making a song, you’re not really thinking that far. You’re thinking of right now, knowing that if you crack it right, it could be nostalgic and last forever. Fashion is not like that. It’s about how you feel at the moment, but also keeping in mind what people are going to be wearing way in advance. 

So, is that a hard no, or should we never say never?
"It’s a no, for right now. I’m enjoying my work with EKOCYCLE, which allows me to design but also focus on sustainability and global progress."

What is one thing that everyone could do to really change the world?
"We need to inspire the world rather that try to change it. Changing the world is a scary concept, actually, which is why the world stays the same. Instead, I want to inspire people to change their lives. Be a little bit more conscious about the things you buy, because we’re not. We’re not conscious of the things we buy, put in our bodies, put in our minds, and put in our homes."

 
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Pepsi/Coke Feud Could Keep Nicki Minaj Off ‘American Idol’

Nicki Minaj’s shot at a seat in the American Idol judge’s chair could be derailed by a can of Pepsi, The New York Post reports. American Idol is famously Product Placement-palooza for Coca-Cola … which could be a problem for Minaj’s multimillion dollar endorsement deal with Pepsi.

Pepsi sponsors Nicki Minaj’s Pink Friday Reloaded tour and the rapper also fronts the brand’s Live For Now campaign. While it’s unclear exactly what her Pepsi contract says, it is likely that it carries language barring her from working with a competitor. American Idol plans to start holding auditions in the next week or two, so they’re anxious to sort this out soon. I mean, maybe they can just let her sit next to a Pepsi can instead of a Coke can?

I think the hashtag for this should be #richpeopleproblems.

Contact the author of this post at Jessica.Wakeman@Gmail.com. Follow me on Twitter and Tumblr.

Thing That Doesn’t Work And Should Be Destroyed: The Coca-Cola ‘Freestyle’ Machine

Look, I long ago made peace with the way in which, over the course of a distractingly normal childhood, the good folks as the Coca-Cola Company hooked me on fountain soda. No bottle or can of is equal to the cup with crushed ice—to that magical humming machine, mixing the fizz and fructose syrup in perfect ratios as they shoot down from the tap. Modern art genius Robert Irwin knows what I’m talking about.

The Coca-Cola ‘Freestyle’ soda fountain, however, a supposed leap forward in the world of customized soft-drink delivery, is an abomination I will not endure. You don’t have to sample all 127 flavors on offer to know that each is in some way contaminated by whatever dribbled out previously—that even an order of Coca-Cola classic has hints of root beer and, like, whatever chemical is supposed to be the lime in Diet Coke with Lime. (If I could get an order of Bud Lite with Lime, I might not be so irate.)

And by the way, who the hell is drinking these freak flavors? Are you the same idiots who went for "suicides" on regular soda fountains? Why are such people even allowed in the same fast-food courts as me? Now that the novelty of a patently worthless device has waned and these hulking vats of undifferentiated tooth decay are the norm in highway rest stops, will I be condemned to seek out vintage soda at the grimy strip-mall pizza joint with a ‘C’ health rating? I think so. I gave you so many chances, Freestyle machine. Because addicts are forgiving that way.