Netflix and the Internet of Fashions


TikTok and Netflix didn’t invent Flash in the Pan, of course. But the endless nature of the Internet and online mechanisms have supercharged the 15 minutes of fame.

“Some of us and some businesses will learn to accept that fame comes five seconds and not 15 minutes at a time,” Tal Shachar, media and video game manager, written last year.

Almost every day or week there’s a new digital entertainment or online celebrity fad that comes and goes a lot faster than fast fashion.

Netflix drives fashions for wearing tracksuits or play chess. Reddit crowds who tried to track down Boston Marathon suicide bombers in 2013 turned into regulars TikTok Self-Defense Crusades. The 2010s internet celebrity viral machine smells musty compared to the quick online star hitting like the cranberry juice skateboard guy.

Why is this happening? I will mention a few possibilities. First, there is so much everything online. The good news is, it makes more room for new trends or personalities, and makes it handy for Netflix or TikTok recommendations to help us know what to watch.

The bad news is that it’s hard for just one thing to hold our attention for very long. I might love your Instagram photos but… ooh, look over there! Another brilliant Internet object!

Second, internet flash moments are powered by the recommendation systems of our favorite websites which reward attention with more attention.

People who saw these TikTok sorority videos made other TikTok videos commenting on them, which was a signal to TikTok computers to send more sorority videos to our eyeholes. Netflix, YouTube, Spotify, Facebook, and many other popular sites operate on similar feedback loops that further push back anything that gets noticed.

It’s hard to imagine slowing the pace of digital fads, so we may have to adapt to this reality.

when we listen to a song or feel indignant about something we have seen online, it is worth being aware of the influence of corporate computer systems that reward and are rewarded with our attention.

And we may have to recalibrate our mindsets. My colleague Kashmir Hill wrote a compelling essay this year on the early belief in social media that the more our lives and thoughts were documented online, the less we would judge others on their worst times. “Instead, the opposite has happened,” Kash wrote.

We can still develop the compassion that Internet optimists once predicted. Knowing that a new Internet drama is going to emerge in an hour’s time might make us resist the idea of ​​being drawn into the endless cycle of outrages that come and go over an expensive Advent calendar or “TikTok Sofa Guy. “

Even Netflix appears to be reluctant to rely on the high sugar content of fast-moving online trends. Bloomberg News reporter Lucas Shaw wrote It was a year ago that Netflix tried to rely a little less on series and films that are becoming popular and are quickly fading.

It turns out that it’s expensive and exhausting to keep producing entertainment that doesn’t last long. It also seems to be a useful lesson for our tired brains.


  • Security versus visions of an autonomous future: Some former Tesla employees say Elon Musk pushed the company to compromise road safety in its desire for Tesla cars to drive themselves, my colleagues Cade Metz and Neal E. Boudette report. In one example, Musk asked Tesla engineers to install a rubber seal on the radar on the front of sedans, although some employees warned the seal could trap snow and ice and prevent the system from functioning. correctly.

    Related: Tesla drivers can now play video games from the large dashboard touchscreen while the car is in motion.

  • The supply chain is also about people: A computer chip factory in Malaysia has continued to operate during a wave of Covid-19 in the country this year. Family members of a deceased worker told Bloomberg News that they blamed the company for a Covid death rate for factory workers that appeared to be higher than the rest of Malaysia. (A subscription may be required.)

  • Does your cat like to watch birds? Or does she miss you? Megan Reynolds writes in the New York Times Magazine about her cat (and herself) finding pleasure in hours-long YouTube videos that give indoor kittens a glimpse of birds and outdoor scenes.

There is nothing like the mascots of Japanese baseball teams. Here is Nazo No Sakana, the mascot of the Chiba Lotte Marines team, performing his famous routine of vomit your own skeleton. (Thanks to my colleague Erin McCann for posting this one.)


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