Friday, January 8, 2016

2015 Internet Items of Note

I rarely do end-of-year "round-ups" or "looks back." There's no single or specific reason I haven't done more - in fact, there have been several years when I meant to do so and simply forgot! However, 2015 proved just how mainstream Cyberculture has become, with fads and trends making their way onto the news, and into everyday lives.

The Dress


In particular was The Dress. While it already seems years behind us, The Dress was a (very) brief debate across social media as to the correct color of a particular dress, sparked by a single Tumblr post. The debate was discussed on radio and TV talk shows, reported on by national news outlets, and had celebrities weighing-in. Even scientists got in on the act. The dress in question went on to sell a record number of units.


Rise of the Drones

Due to a number of worldwide events regarding drones - from being used to deliver contraband into prisons, to near-collisions with aircraft, and more - drones were all over the news, and seemingly all across the skies, in 2015. Congress eventually passed an Act regarding the small craft requiring owners to register their drones with the FAA.


Chinese Sprout Trend, 2015
Chinese Sprout Trend, 2015
Star Wars: The Force Awakens

Fans worldwide fretted and argued over the latest Star Wars film all year long. The Force Awakens didn't even open until mid-December, but it managed to break all previous box office records once it did, and rack-up overwhelmingly positive reviews. 


The Ashley Madison Affair

Ashley Madison has long been the target of derision, being a match-making site for married people, but in July, hackers exposed their users after the site refused to close. Some members found themselves victim of online extortion schemes, and worse, but Ashley Madison claims to have added some 4mn new users since the incident.



The Art of Printing Guns

Cody Wilson made news when he 3D-printed a working firearm. He stirred even more controversy when he offered the instructions online for free. Gun Control has been a hot-button issue in America for a long time, and it has recently come to a head with President Obama announcing an Executive Order meant ot tighten restrictions on those allowed to purchase firearms legally.


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