Jeff's back to complete a week of episodes, and although we don't normally condone eating on the air (because it's gross), we'll make an exception for Wilson's favorite treat--Lotte Koala chocolate cookies! Anyone else see the resemblance? On today's episode of The 404 Podcast, we're delving into the bizarre world of Kindlerotica, aka e-reader pR0n; Groupon is offering $60,000 scholarships to any baby parented by a couple that used a Groupon on their first date; Google's new URL shortener Goo.gl; and a blacklist of words that Google considers too nasty to include in its Instant search feature.
Online coupon distributor Groupon just debuted the most ridiculous PR campaign we've seen in awhile--it's offering $60,000 college scholarships to Groupon babies, and here's how it works. To participate, two people must meet through Groupon's dating Web site Grouspawn, agree to go on a date at a restaurant that accepts Groupon coupons, and see what happens from there.
A Groupon baby is only eligible for the $60,000 scholarship prize if it was conceived on the first date, and proof must be obtained in the form of photographic evidence, credit card receipts, or waiter testimonials. Make sense? There are already 166 members on the Grouspawn Date Assistant, so get on it!
As of Wednesday of this week, the most downloaded novel on the Amazon Kindle Webstore was "Compromising Positions" by Jenna Bayley Burke. As you might not have guessed from the subtle wit in its name, "Compromising Positions" is an adult-rated novel that represents the latest trend in Kindlerotica, or e-porn.
Whereas classic romance novels are traditionally targeted at women, this latest genre is definitely written for men and most of the titles read like text out of Penhouse Forum letters. It's disturbing to think that people are actually reading these stories in public, but the problem may be that Amazon is distributing these stories for free, which explains why they keep popping up on the best-seller list.
None of us really get the appeal, and Jeff puts it best when he describes his visual affinity toward the subject matter. In either case, if you want to check it out, another novel called "Office Slave" seems to be a good place to start....but do everyone a favor and stay out of the subway when you read it, OK?
Speaking of dirty birdies, the 2600 just published the Google Blacklist--Words that Google Instant Doesn't Like, and there are a ton of submissions. Google Instant is a new search feature that shows results in real time as you type. It also relies on predictive results that could potentially save you two to five seconds per search, but that opens up the floodgates on certain words that Google deems universally offensive.
So alongside the standard four-letter cusswords and NSFW terms, there's also a heap of ambiguously dirty words like "golden," "lemon," "teen," and an entire section dedicated to variations on the word "dog." Use your imagination, or just check out the entire list, at your own discretion--this is your official NSFW warning!
Oh, Google also unveiled its own URL shortener called Goo.gl. FYI, we spend less time talking about that than it took for you to read the previous sentence.
Have a great weekend everyone!
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