Chris Stokel-Walker

Chris Stokel-Walker is the author of YouTubers: How YouTube Shook Up TV and Created a New Generation of Stars (Canbury Press), and writes for Wired, the Guardian, BBC, and the Economist.

Reproductive rights

Meet the Twitter curators highlighting DALL-E’s weirdest AI art

“It’s a new form of imagination,” says one account operator.

Absurdity

COVID long haulers are sharing their realities on TikTok

The platform provides a space for long COVID sufferers to connect with other afflicted folks — and fight rampant misinformation.

Chronic illness

I had Google AI narrate my audiobook. The results were... not terrible.

The production of audiobooks can be a long, laborious process. Tech giants are trying to cut human narrators out of the equation.

Literature
Thrills

Meet the amateur archivists streaming old VHS tapes online

Forget Netflix. Watching schlocky movie clips and vintage TV commercials on Twitch or YouTube is way more fun.

Retromania

Boris Johnson just joined TikTok. Joe Biden should, too.

The British prime minister isn’t using the app right, but if he were, it could be a powerful tool.

Politics

Now the Bored Apes are taking over your breakfast nook

There’s Ape-themed cereal and coffee — and potentially many more NFT-branded consumer goods to come.

New pioneers

People hate their guts, but landlord influencers keep on posting

The landlords of Tiktok and YouTube claim they’re not the bad guys. Trolls beg to differ.

Capitalism

The triumphant rise of pro wrestler vloggers

On YouTube, stars are letting fans into their day-to-day lives — and building their brands in the process.

Entertainment

Why did Disney and the cops shut down a fan-run ‘Club Penguin’ site?

‘Club Penguin Rewritten’ allegedly has violated copyright for years, so users wonder what’s behind the recent arrests of three people.

Intellectual property

Royal rumblers: Inside the world of anti–Meghan Markle YouTube

The controversial community is blaming Christopher Bouzy, founder of an anti-hate site, for getting two prominent YouTubers banned.

Drama

Amber Heard, others blast Instagram for inaction on abusive DMs

Five high-profile women shared often “revolting” unsolicited DMs for a new study by the Center for Countering Digital Hate.

Misogyny

An artist claims an Andrew Yang–backed NFT project screwed him over

Illustrator Phillip Lietz alleges that Yang’s Lobby3 organization took advantage of him and others.

Politics

TikTok thinks periods are icky

When it comes to menstruation education, bans and blocks are “adding to the taboo we’ve fought so long against,” says one creator.

Health

What happens when vinyl records meet NFTs?

Musicians like Moses Sumney are getting in on the nascent trend. But not everyone is sold.

Music

Want fries with that Ape? NFT restaurants are officially a trend.

Plans are in place for everything from a pop-up burger joint to “an extremely lavish” sushi establishment.

Non-fungible takeout

Disney World’s system for predicting ride wait times is a joke

Third-party websites and apps are better guides, but it’s still a crapshoot.

Vacation

The internet forgot about Clubhouse. Anti-war Russians didn’t.

The audio app may have fallen out of vogue, but it has become some Russians’ lifeline amid a social media crackdown.

Voices

Hot job alert: metaverse architect

More and more people, including traditionally trained architects, are creating buildings for the booming virtual real estate market.

VR Week 2022