Danish fishing magazine's nudie pix offensive to women, fish - 10 Things
As we flagged only days ago, UK Prime Minister David Cameron has announced that if the Tories win the next election there will be a referendum on whether the nation remains part of the European Union: "It will be an in-out referendum" he declared, presumably to titters from his backbenchers." EU member states are understandably antsy about this, as are members of Cameron's own party who are calling for a referendum now, thanks, and want out (Cameron's indicated he's be campaigning to remain part of the EU, interestingly enough) while Labour leader Ed Milibrand has, predictably, rejected the idea since it came from Cameron but suggested that it wouldn't be out of the question under a Labour Government either. Maybe the EU should just get them some flowers or something.
Speaking of in-out referenda, the human love act was celebrated last Saturday with the 30th Annual Adult Video Awards, in which the best and brightest talents in the cinematic humpin' arts were given their due (and congratulations to James Deen and Asa Akira for taking out Best Male and Female Performer, respectively: we always knew you had it in you). but as lovers of language, we were naturally most interested in the Clever Title of the Year awards - and those concerned that 2012 couldn't live up to the standard of 2010 (The Devil Wears Nada) and 2011 (Beggin' for a Peggin') can breathe easy: congratulations, Vouyer Media, for Does This Dick Make My Ass Look Big?. It beat out such worthy competition as Occupy My Ass, Somebody Shave Me and The Spit and the Speculum - but to us, you're all winners.
Did she? Didn't she? Beyoncégate continues with claims that the US national anthem was actually sung live at the inauguration of Barack Obama, despite all the accusations that Beyoncé was lip synching. A marine corps band spokesperson had made the claim that Beyoncé switched to a backing track at the last minute, but production website ProductionAdvice.co.uk have analysed the performance and declared that nope, dame was singing: "When she starts singing, her voice is hard to hear – the microphone gain is too low. The sound-man quickly corrects this – but if we were listening to a recording this wouldn’t happen" they contend, in the sort of close examination of YouTube clips that's normally reserved for 9/11 Truthers. That being said, a) it does look and sound awfully like she's singing live, and b) since she's a professional singer who sings and everything, the idea that she was maybe singing doesn't seem that far-fetched to us (and she takes out her in-ear monitoring mid-way through, which suggests that she was worried about it affecting her pitch). Then again, the New York Times have disabled comments for the YouTube clip below - WHAT ARE YOU TRYING TO HIDE, NYT? IS IT THE TRUTH? WAKE UP SHEEPLE!
The EU make be shaky with Britain's threats to take its bat and ball and go home, but don't worry: Russia is totally solid and strong and in no danger of collapse and doesn't need any of your stupid economic and political reforms, according to Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. Sure, European economic experts were expressing concerns that the country was teetering on the edge of a "middle-class revolt" due to rampant government corruption and an economy entirely dependent on oil prices during discussions at the World Economic Forum in Davos yesterday, but Medvedev assured the audience that Russia was fit, healthy and the perfect place for people to invest. As with all statements from the Russian PM, this was said in the voice of President Vladimir Putin, who had Medvedev sitting on his knee during the speech while Putin appeared to drink a glass of water.
India are leaping into the 20th century with a report calling for legal and social reforms in the wake of the recent series of gang rapes in the nation. Campaigners have expressed guarded support for the 630 page document, although some have pointed out that most of it has been said before - as campaigner Anil Bairwal told the Guardian "Little of this is new. Most is what a government should already be doing." However, the government has indicated that it plans to act on the recommendations. And again, can we just be explicit about this: how's about people stop raping other people, OK?
As more and more artists use their music for ads the line between what's a legitimate classic hit blasting from the past to take us up to the weather and what's a bit of contractually-sponsored piece of stealth advertising is getting even more blurry - which is why Adelaide classic hits station 5DN has had its wrist slapped for playing Status Quo's 'Down Down' without pointing out that it wasn't the classic awful smash hit by the venerable UK nostalgia act but the new awful recording as part of their deal with Coles. The Australian Communications and Media Authority declined to fine the station, but contend that the station breached the code of conduct around commercial content, which is a pleasingly alliterative charge. We'd just fine them on the basis that no-one should be playing Status Quo - except 'Pictures of Matchstick Men', obviously, which is a sick jam.
$US8 million: that's what Psy's 'Gangnam Style' has earned in ad revenue on YouTube, and the Korean pop star will bag around half that. Pity that he's never playing the song live again, of course, because everyone's doubtlessly looking forward to his new material with breathless enthusiasm…
Meanwhile Chinese construction workers have taken up Psy's now-available track and used it to protest unpaid wages in Wuhan. It's apparently not uncommon for unscrupulous employers to withhold wages in the lead up to the new year in the hopes that migrant workers will be forced to return home without claiming them, and a group of workers who'd built a nightclub in the city decided the best way to bring attention to their plight was by dancing Gangman Style outside the site. The owners of the club are saying they'll pay once "problems with the project were resolved", which may or may not include "a bunch of workers dancing outside".
Thank you, Tomas Gunnarsson, for standing up to the scourge of Denmark's proud, below-sea-level traditions and declaring that the "fish girl" section of Danish fishing magazine Fisk & Fri objectifies women and, for that matter, fish. The section features submissions from readers of clothes-free dames and fish. Blogger Gunnarsson, however, argues that the section alienates female anglers and is an example of the entrenched sexism in the magazine and the fishing community generally. Editor Jens Burssell countered that "We do this mostly as a joke", suggesting that Fisk & Fri therefore do it at least partially as a celebration of the sexy, sexy world of angling. Or just of fish. The magazine has, however, appeared to have retired the page: "Fish Girls has for five years been a popular underside of www.fiskogfri.dk - but everything has its time," the site claims, at least according to Google Translate. Our Danish isn't so good.
And finally, if the above didn't clue you in, it turns out that hot dames fishing is apparently A Thing. Seriously. Who knew?