Vodcast: Connecting With Our Kids in a Wireless World

0
vodcast with Dr. Kathy Koch

For a long time—longer than maybe I want to admit, even—my professional life has revolved around helping families navigate this bewildering world of entertainment and technology we live in. Those twin influences are only getting stronger as time goes on: Kids and teens have so many shows to watch, music to listen to, games to […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: Yeah, Being a Couch Potato is Bad For You

1
cat couch potato

We’ve always known, deep down, that sittin’ on the couch to do nothin’ but watch TV probably isn’t the best way to spend one’s day. Or month. Or year. But now, thanks to Scientific American, we have some indication of how bad the sin of sloth can be for us. It’s not just that couch […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: The Let’s-Think-About-What-We-Say-Before-Saying-It edition

11
Roseanne

This is why we can’t have nice things. Let’s start with Roseanne Barr, whose 2018 career trajectory looks a little like the flight of a model rocket with a faulty parachute. First came the ABC revival of her beloved sitcom, Roseanne. It came out of the gate like an angry buffalo, galloping to some seriously […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: Show Dogs Comes to Heel

5
cutting film

For a movie that’s made all of $7 million, Show Dogs has certainly sparked its fair share of controversy, including (obviously, if you’ve been following the blog lately) here in Plugged In land. I imagine more stories have been written about the flick than people have actually seen it. Well, the makers of the talking […]

Continue Reading

Show Dogs Controversy Hits the Mainstream

36

Controversy surrounding the kids’ movie Show Dogs ratcheted up another notch today. The National Center on Sexual Exploitation has issued a statement on scenes involving a talking dog having its genitals touched during a dog show, scenes that they’re concerned may promote sexual abuse of children. The NCOSE’s statement reads: “The movie Show Dogs sends […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: Are You Getting up for the Royal Wedding?

6
royal wedding

I pride myself on knowing what’s happening in the world and culture. But I had a funny exchange with my wife last week. We were watching TV when an add came on for an upcoming special titled something like, Meghan Markle: An American Princess. “She’s American?!” I asked, somewhat startled. I’d missed that little factoid. […]

Continue Reading

The Clanging Cringiness of Musical.ly

2
Musical.ly

We’ve all heard about Facebook and Instagram, YouTube and Twitter. Certain apps and social media platforms are as ubiquitous as, well, the smartphone you’re probably clutching in your hand right now. But kids flock to some apps that we parents are sometimes woefully unaware of. The Musical.ly app may be one of those. On the […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: Siri, Who’s the Smartest Digital Assistant?

1

These days, digital assistants such as Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s, erm, Assistant can deliver answers, directions, pizza and tons of other stuff just by asking. So USA Today set out to find out which of these virtual answer bots was the most accurate. The short answer probably shouldn’t come as a surprise: “We […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: It’s a Crazy World … So Eat Dinner as a Family

23

You don’t have to look further than your news feed to find plenty of disheartening news. And we’ll deal with some of that shortly. But before our weekly deep-dive into the overlapping realms of entertainment, popular culture and what’s happening with kids today, I thought we’d begin with an encouraging reminder from Homeword’s Jim Burns: […]

Continue Reading

Maturity Matters

14

Common sense would tell us that people’s personal maturity will influence their careers, their lives and their relationships, regardless of how talented they are. Alas, common sense isn’t as common these days as perhaps it once was. For decades now—stretching back at least as far as political scandals in the ’80s and ’90s, and maybe […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: This Email Will Self-Destruct …

4
burning envelope

“This tape will self-destruct in five seconds.” Mission Impossible fans will, of course, recognize that iconic line from the original 1960s and ’70s TV series. (And, of course, the franchise’s amped-up Tom Cruise reboot since then.) We don’t use tape much anymore, obviously, but Google seems to have something similar in mind with its latest […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: The Rock Is Dead, Rap Reigns Edition

69
Kendrick Lamar

Rock is dead. Rap reigns. So say music charts, YouTube views, Spotify play lists and Washington Post contributor Marc Weingarten. His opinion piece yesterday, “Sorry, rock fans. Hip-hop is the only genre that matters right now,” unpacks the significance of rapper Kendrick Lamar winning this year’s Pulitzer Prize for music. Though rock fans may be […]

Continue Reading

Uncool, CinnamonToastKen

5
cinnamontoastken

Emma Jenkins has nearly 32,000 followers on her YouTube channel. She, like most folks with a YouTube channel, talks about what she likes. And that, it turns out, includes Jesus. CinnamonToastKen has nearly 3 million followers on his YouTube channel. He, also, talks about what he likes. And that, its turns out, includes making fun […]

Continue Reading

Culture Clips: The Unliking Facebook Edition

4
thumbs down

Ah, Facebook. Welcome back, old friend. We’ve seen quite a bit of you these days—well, in our Culture Clips blog, at least. Every time I visit you myself, you ask me to tell you my social security number and demand that I vote for Vladimir Putin for our local school board. Well, maybe that’s stretching […]

Continue Reading