Culture Clips: Taylor’s Trial’s Inspiring Influence

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Taylor Swift

If you follow pop culture happenings, you likely saw the story this week about singer Taylor Swift testifying at a trial in Denver. The case involved a 2013 meet-‘n’-greet in which then DJ David Mueller allegedly groped the singer’s backside. Mueller lost his job over the incident, and actually sued Swift for $3 million. (Swift […]

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Culture Clips: If You Can’t Beat a Shark, Jump It

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Each summer, Discovery Channel faces a unique programming challenge: making its “Shark Week” programming feel fresh. That’s no small challenge, given the fact that this annual ode to dorsal fins and sharp teeth has been airing since 1988. This year, the cable network began teasing one of its sharkiest gambits yet: pitting Olympic swimming legend […]

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Culture Clips: Game of Thrones Conquers Millions, Facebook Billions

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Game of Thrones

Winter is coming. In, like, about five and a half months or something. In the meantime, HBO’s Game of Thrones is coming, too. Its seventh season begins July 16. The show has become about the closest thing to “must-see TV” in today’s fragmented television landscape: Time tossed it on its cover this week and called […]

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Culture Clips: Why Are Political Dramas Tanking?

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Have American viewers grown weary of fictional political dramas on TV? The answer seems to be yes, according to a Huffpost article analyzing declining ratings for the genre. Writer Stephanie Marcus notes that virtually every politically themed series—including Scandal, The Americans, Homeland, Madame Secretary, Quantico and Designated Survivor—has seen viewership decline since the election of […]

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Culture Clips: We’re Consuming More, More Media

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Pssst! Hey, you. Yes, that’s right—you there, the one staring at me on that screen of yours. Just what do you think you’re doing? Well, I’ll tell you: You’re consuming media, that’s what. Right at this very second. And you’re hardly alone. According to a study by eMarketer, the average adult spends more than 12 […]

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Culture Clips: A TV Wasteland?

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You wouldn’t necessarily know it here in Colorado, but we’re creeping up on summer, a time when lots of scripted television shows go into hibernation and the networks roll out their cheesiest reality shows. Who’s up for Who Wants to Be a Battlebots Bachelor? Anyone? But before America’s TV execs dozed off for the season, […]

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Culture Clips: The Fate of the Free World (and Vin Diesel) Edition

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Fate of the Furious cars flying

We have so much serious stuff to get to in our latest edition of Culture Clips. But before we get too grim, let me share with you my reaction to The Fate of the Furious’ mammoth $532.5 million worldwide take on Monday. “Wha??!” Turns out, though, I’m just an old curmudgeon. The Washington Post suggests […]

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A Tool for Evaluating Your Children’s Screen Time

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A child looking at a tablet.

We hear a lot about the hazard of excessive screen these days. For ourselves. For our kids. The American Academy of Pediatrics refined its recommendations for children’s screen time last October. For babies below the age of 18 months, the AAP suggests no screens at all. Between that milestone and 2 years, screens can be […]

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Culture Clips: Do Video Games Undermine Young Men’s Will to Work?

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The unemployment rate for men in their 20s has been rising for about 15 years now. Yet, curiously, a higher percentage say that they’re happier these days. What gives? Could it be that men who aren’t working are busily filling their days with … video games?   University of Chicago economist Erik Hurst looked into […]

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Culture Clips: The Vexing Conundrum of Social Media

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Ah, social media. Can’t live with it, can’t live without it. Seems like there’s a bit of truth in that old, unfunny saying I just co-opted and twisted for my own Culture Clips purposes. Researchers are talking a lot these days about how Instagram, Facebook and the like can negatively impact our lives. But scientists […]

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Sorry, WikiLeaks. The CIA Doesn’t Need Our TVs to Get to Know Us

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The CIA can spy on us through our televisions and phones. At least that’s what a huge cache of leaked documents recently published on WikiLeaks alleges. That’s right: While there’s no evidence they’re using these tools on us, the CIA apparently has the means to surveil what we say and do at any given moment. […]

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Culture Clips: And the Oscar Goes To … No, Wait!

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Yep, we’re still talking about the Oscar gaffe. And let’s face it: It was a doozy. Thanks to an envelope mix-up, the world thought for about two minutes that the musical La La Land had won the Academy Awards’ Best Picture honors. Not so: The coming-of-age drama Moonlight was the real winner, and some say […]

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Are Teens Replacing One Drug With Another?

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News that today’s teens are drinking and taking drugs less than ever can’t be anything but good news, right? Yes, obviously the drop in teen substance abuse, as reported by the University of Michigan’s latest Monitoring the Future study,  is a very good thing. But the question remains, why? Are today’s adolescents more risk-averse? Are […]

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