WARNING: Don’t read the following post if you’re eating, you’re under 18 or you’ve ever cringed at anything in your life.
Name a YouTube sensation or Internet meme and there are mainstream media articles about it. TV news, desperate for attention-grabbing video, will run whatever people are watching online and try to explain why it’s so popular. Newspaper lifestyle writers, desperate for some new sociological situation to discuss, look behind the meme to find something about our lives that’s changed in recent years. The rest just want to convince readers, viewers and listeners that they’re hip to the Internet and aren’t being left behind in the mad rush to the Web.
But there’s one Internet meme that mainstream media hasn’t touched yet, and for very good reason: They just can’t show the video on television.
For the few of you who don’t already know what I’m talking about, I’m going to choose my words carefully. Because despite the warning at the beginning of this post, there are people with a sense of decency who read this blog regularly (e.g. my mother, her mother).
The video in question is called “2 girls 1 cup”. It’s a pornographic fetish video created by a Brazillian pornographer, and billed as the most disgusting set of moving images ever produced. Basically it’s two women eating their own feces and vomit out of a cup.
The Internet meme isn’t so much the video itself, which even YouTube won’t allow posted to its website. Rather, it’s the reaction videos, videos of people watching it for the first time and the horrified, disgusted looks on their faces when the tame lesbian porn turns into … gross.
It’s gotten to the point where those reaction videos themselves are being spoofed (see the Kermit version — and again remember the warning above), and others who are trying to leverage the video’s infamy to gain some fame of their own are going so far as to create music referencing it:
But still, mainstream media is silent. A gay magazine here, a college newspaper there. Maybe a spoof article.
Have we finally crossed that line that big media won’t follow? Have they finally drawn a line in the sand and said this is so offensive that they won’t dignify it with even a passing reference?
If so, perhaps that’s a good thing. Perhaps it will cause some people in the news business to rethink their approach to coverage that picks up on Internet memes at the expense of wars, politics, science and all those other boring topics that don’t drive up ratings numbers they can sell to advertisers.
Or perhaps not. Perhaps they’ll just show the reaction videos and hope they can tell the story without showing the original or even mentioning its name.
Anyone want to take any bets on how low the media is going to go on this?