How Online Bingo Is Staking Its Claim On The Pop Culture Landscape
There used to be a time when bingo was thought of more as a game reserved for old folks looking for a bit more excitement than the daily thrill of watching paint peel off the front porch of the house. Barring the occasional kid who got dragged into a bingo hall by Granma and Granpa against his will, hardly anyone thought of bingo as a game that spoke to the younger generation.
Then the online bingo revolution happened, and somehow the game’s transition from brick-and-mortar playing venues into digital bingo halls drew in players of all ages. Bingo was suddenly catapulted into the pop culture radar by virtue of becoming a video game marketed to the masses.
This mobile gaming transition wasn’t the only factor, though. Endorsements from celebrities like Catherine Zeta-Jones and Robbie Williams also played a part in giving the game that oh-my-god-even-famous-people-are-playing-it level of cool.
And then there are the mascots whose visuals and characterizations aim to appeal to a wide demographic range. Cheeky Bingo is fronted by a fresh-faced, Ms. Pac-Man-esque character whose cartoony figure is designed to draw in players. Moreover, and as evidenced by her frequent Twitter messages, her amusingly brazen attitude plays a huge part in her allure as well; not unlike the way we’re drawn to Jennifer Lawrence every time she gives one of her golden nuggets of knowledge during interviews.
It’s a combination of all these factors that put online bingo on the map alongside other popular casual games like Angry Birds and Candy Crush. With enough push and maybe a bit of luck, perhaps these bingo mascots and the games they represent might just become as well known worldwide as Harry Potter and Mickey Mouse.
In a small ceremony in Baghdad today, the U.S. military formally ended its mission in Iraq after nearly nine years of war, 4,487 lives lost and more than 32,000 wounded.On hand for the small ceremony held at the international airport in Baghdad were Defense Secretary Leon Panetta and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Gen. Martin Dempsey.“This is not the end, but the beginning,” Panetta told a small group of U.S. service members and dignitaries gathered to watch the “casing” of the flag of U.S.-Forces-Iraq, the headquarters command for U.S. troops in Iraq.
Bangladesh police say fishermen have beaten to death 10 suspected pirates who were wounded in a gunfight with security forces. Local police chief Bashir Ahmed says the wounded men were being brought to a police station late Wednesday when hundreds of angry fishermen snatched them from police and beat them to death.He said Thursday that police were far outnumbered by the mob and could not save the suspected pirates.
Passing – Christopher Hitchens, the author, writer and Vanity Fair contributing editor, has died. He was 62.
Another Repbulican Debtate – Newt Gingrich put himself in a difficult position ahead of Thursday night’s Fox News debate in Sioux City, Iowa: He sought to adhere to his pledge not to go negative against his Republican presidential opponents while still holding his lead in the Iowa polls.
President Obama hit China automobile tire makers with a trade tariff in 2009 and now Beijing has struck back with a potentially more punitive tariff, as much as a 21% tax hike on U.S. car exports bound for China, the world’s largest auto market. This week, the Chinese government upped the ante in the Obama-China trade dispute by surprisingly imposing new tariffs on imports of Honda and Cadillac models, Chrysler Jeep Grand Cherokee, the BMW X5 and X3 and Mercedes Benz models made in Michigan, Alabama and South Carolina. China argues that the U.S. provided illegal subsidies to these companies during the economic downturn in 2008 and is selling those vehicles cheaper in China than they are sold for in the U.S.
The Senate has approved a two-month extension of a cut to the Social Security payroll tax and agreed to continue jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed. It’s a partial victory for President Barack Obama’s year-end jobs agenda. It also contains a provision demanded by Republicans to pressure Obama into approving construction of a Canada-to-Texas oil pipeline that promises thousands of jobs.
The last convoy of U.S. soldiers pulled out of Iraq on Sunday, ending nearly nine years of war that cost almost 4,500 American and tens of thousands of Iraqi lives and left a country grappling with political uncertainty. The war launched in March 2003 with missiles striking Baghdad to oust President Saddam Hussein closes with a fragile democracy still facing insurgents, sectarian tensions and the challenge of defining its place in an Arab region in turmoil.
North Koreans poured into the streets on Monday to mourn the death of leader Kim Jong-il and state media hailed his untested son as the “Great Successor” of the reclusive state whose atomic weapons ambitions are a major threat to the region. Earlier, a tearful North Korean television announcer, dressed in black and her voice quavering, said the 69-year old ruler died on Saturday of “physical and mental over-work” on a train on his way to give “field guidance” — advice dispensed by the “Dear Leader” on trips to factories, farms and the military.
Iraqi authorities issued an arrest warrant forSunni Muslim Vice-President Tareq al-Hashemi on Monday for suspected ties to assassinations and bombings, a decision likely to fuel sectarian tensions after the U.S. troop withdrawal.
Fierce winds and snow that caused fatal road accidents and shuttered highways in five states, crawled deeper into the Great Plains early Tuesday, with forecasters warning that pre-holiday travel would be difficult if not impossible across the region. Hotels were filling up quickly along major roadways from eastern New Mexico to Kansas, and nearly 100 rescue calls came in from motorists in the Texas Panhandle as blizzard conditions forced closed part of Interstate 40, a major east-west route, Monday night. About 10 inches of snow had fallen in western Kansas before dawn Tuesday and several more inches along with strong wind gusts were expected, National Weather Service meteorologist Marc Russell said.
A small plane heading for Georgia crashed Tuesday on a major New York-area highway, spiraling out of control, breaking up and hitting a wooded median and scattering wreckage across the road. All five people aboard were killed, but no one on the ground was injured. Federal investigators said the pilot had discussed icing with controllers just before the plane went down but were unsure what role, if any, icing played in the crash.
Philippine President Benigno Aquino declared on Tuesday a state of national calamity after flash floods and land slides caused by a typhoon swept through a southern region late last week, killing about 1,000 people and leaving tens of thousands homeless. The national disaster agency said 957 were killed and 49 were missing, with most of the casualties in the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan in the Mindanao region.
AT&T Inc. said Monday that it is ending its $39 billion bid to buy T-Mobile USA after facing fierce government objections. The cellphone giant said that the actions of the U.S. government to block the deal do not change the challenges of the wireless phone industry, which it says requires more airwaves, known as spectrum, to expand.
Authorities say “Lean on Me” actor Jermaine “Huggy” Hopkins has been arrested in Phoenix for trying to buy 200 pounds (91 kilograms) of marijuana from an undercover officer. Sheriff’s detectives say the 38-year-old Hopkins was taken into custody Tuesday. Phoenix TV station KSAZ reports that detectives found 200 pounds of marijuana in his SUV and $100,000 cash. Authorities later searched an Avondale apartment listed in Hopkins’ name. They say they found another 100 pounds (45 kilograms) of marijuana.
Satellite radio personality Howard Stern joins “America’s Got Talent” as a judge. Howard finally landed a spot as TV show talent judge as he was once considered for “American Idol.”
Atlanta police say the rapper Slim Dunkin was gunned down Friday evening in amusic studio as he was preparing to record a video. Police Maj. Keith Meadows said the rapper, whose real name is Mario Hamilton, was fatally shot in the chest after getting into an argument with another individual. He was transported to Grady Memorial Hospital where he was pronounced dead.
Slim Dunkin had appeared on a number of songs with the rapper Waka Flocka Flame. The website Mtv.com reported that the Brick Squad Monopoly rapper was on a solo track and had recently released a 20-track mix tape that featured Gucci Mane, Roscoe Dash and Pastor Troy.
“At Last” and “Tell Mama” blues singer Etta James, whose health has been fading in recent years, is now terminally ill, and her live-in doctor is asking for prayers. Dr. Elaine James, who isn’t related to the 73-year-old entertainer, tells the Riverside Press-Enterprise newspaper that the singer’s chronic leukemia was declared incurable two weeks ago.
The Beach Boys Will Re-Unite in 2012 - The members of the group will join forces for a new album and a 50th anniversary tour, the band announced on its website Friday. The effort reunites original band leader and chief songwriter Brian Wilson with fellow members Al Jardine, Mike Love, Bruce Johnston and David Marks. Several songs have already been recorded for the new album, including a new version of the group’s 1968 hit, “Do It Again.” The 50-date tour will begin in April at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. Other dates and cities have yet to be announced.
Britney Spears Engaged - Britney Spears accepts Jason Trawick‘s marriage proposal and the 30-year-old pop superstar can hardly contain her excitement.The couple plans to celebrate their engagement — and Trawick’s 40th birthday – Friday evening at Planet Hollywood and Chateau nightclub in Las Vegas.
Hugh Hefner says he pushed Lindsay Lohan to shoot her Playboy pictorial in the buff. ”It was essentially mama and the folks around her that kept pushing for less nudity,” Hefner told E! News. “I said, ‘We’re doing a nude pictorial here. We’re going to do it in a very classy way and we’re going to do it in a way in which it will not be forgotten.’” Ellen DeGeneres is putting down roots where Brad Pitt once laid his head. The daytime host finalized a deal to purchase Brad’s Malibu, Calif., home for $12 million on Friday.
Chaz Bono and his fiancée Jennifer Elia have split and canceled their engagement. Bono’s rep Howard Bragman confirmed to ET that the engagement is off and Chaz and Jennifer are “no longer a couple.” “They leave this relationship with great love, respect and affection toward one another. No further amplification will be forthcoming and they ask that you respect their privacy at this time,” Bragman said in a statement.
Social Media Hoax Said Jon Bon Jovi Had Died… Jon Bon Jovi wants duped fans to know he’s not dead, and he has posted a photo proving it. False reports of the New Jersey-born musician’s death spread online after a fake news release surfaced on social media sites.
Top Video Games –
Mari Kart 7 3DS
Just Dance 3 Wii
Kinect Adventures! X360
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 X360
Super Mario 3D Land 3DS
Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Ps3
Mario Kart Wii
The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sward Wii
Wii Sports Resort
The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim X360
At the movies –
Sherlock Holmes: A Game Of Shadows (1st week $39.6 million)
Alivn and the Chipmunks: Chipwrecked! (1st week $23.2 million)
I love pop history/pop culture. Can’t you tell? Here’s a terrific timeline. On top – evolution of the telephone. One thing’s missing – cell phone service – which went mainstream in 1982. On the bottom – audio and playback. While this isn’t complete (such as stereo and such) – it’s a lot of fun to look at. For instance – did you know – the first 78rpm record actually came out in 1879? How about those crank phones? A year later – in 1880.
Dig that 1964 slimline phone – lookin’ good!
Now look at radio. AM radio came to us in 1906! Today – your favorite AM station uses the same 1906 technology! Look at FM – 1937. Again – most FM is the same (stereo was added in the 1950′s and sanctioned by the FCC in 1961).
The iPod – wow – 10 years old. So is satellite radio. HD radio?? Won’t be around too much longer I’m afraid. It’s bombing.
Mr. Pop History/Mr. Pop Culture Presents An Audio And Telephone Timeline
Week Of November 8, 2011 In Pop Culture, News, Tech & Entertainment
(VIDEO) In The News - A fired government worker with a protest sign dangled for hours from New York’s Tappan Zee Bridge on Monday, backing up traffic for miles before dropping into the Hudson River and being hauled aboard a police boat. Michael Davitt, 54, of Garnerville, N.Y., had been angry about being dismissed in 2008 from his counseling job with the Rockland County mental health department and was well known to law enforcement, county Sheriff James Kralik said.
One year before voters decide whether to re-elect President Barack Obama to a second term, a majority have little faith in his handling of the economy but he still leads his Republican rivals, according to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll released on Monday.
The first national test of a US national alert system left many Americans confused and some said the system failed in its goal to reach all broadcasters in the country.Many people watching television at 1900 GMT heard the familiar scratchy noises followed by the test announcement – designed to alert Americans of national emergencies — but others apparently did not. In the western state of Oregon, KVAL television said it was among several stations in the area which missed the test. “KVAL TV did show a frame warning that there would be a test, but the test itself was never received,” the station said.
An earthquake struck eastern Turkey on Wednesday night, killing at least three people and leaving dozens trapped in the rubble of toppled buildings damaged in a previous temblor, which had killed 600 people.
Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s enormous memory lapse at Wednesday’s debate put his campaign in immediate damage-control mode. But not even the candidate–who was unable to recall the third federal agency he would eliminate if he were elected president–is shying away from poking fun at himself for the mistake. At the CNBC Republican presidential debate, Perry stole the show when he tried to name the three agencies he would close, but could only come up with two. It was a 53-second made-for-YouTube mistake that some say could sink his campaign.
Italy’s parliament began rushing through austerity measures demanded by the European Union to avert a euro zone meltdown, after U.S. President Barack Obama ratcheted up pressure for more dramatic action from the currency bloc. Italy’s Senate approved a new budget law, clearing the way for approval of the package in the lower house on Saturday and the formation of an emergency government to replace that of Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.
A massive storm that battered Alaska’s western coast with hurricane-strength winds and towering sea surges has passed out of the region in a much weaker state, but it left behind widespread damage and worries that a man may have been swept out to a churning sea. So far, 37 communities have reported some form of damage, saidJeremy Zidek, spokesman for the state’s emergency management agency. Most of those communities have opened emergency community shelters, Zidek said.
A chorus of Handel’s “Alleluia” rang out Saturday asSilvio Berlusconi resigned as Italian premier, ending a tumultuous 17-year political era and setting in motion a transition aimed at bringing the country back from the brink of economic crisis. Berlusconi stepped down amid jeers, cheers and heckles of “Buffoon” from thousands of people who packed downtown Rome to witness his government’s downfall after a stunning week of market turmoil that upended his defiant hold on power and threatened to tear apart the eurozone.
The Nebraska and Penn State players gathered at midfield before the game, kneeling together for a long moment in a quiet stadium. Sometimes, the most powerful statements are the simplest. Saturday’s game was a combination of pep rally, cleansing and tribute for a Penn State community rocked by the child sex-abuse scandal involving former assistant Jerry Sandusky that cost Joe Paterno his job.
Professional skier Jamie Pierre was killed Sunday afternoon by an avalanche he triggered while he and a friend were snowboarding at Utah’s Snowbird Ski Resort. The resort had not yet opened for the season and conditions throughout the area were hazardous in the aftermath of a major storm.
Riot-clad law enforcement officerscleared out Oakland’s weeks-old anti-Wall Street encampment just before dawn Monday, arresting Occupy demonstrators and removing tents from a downtown plaza after issuing several warnings over the weekend. Protesters appeared to put up little resistance and officers could be seen calmly leading some demonstrators away in plastic handcuffs. Warnings from authorities had been similar to those issued before officers used tear gas and bean bag projectiles to clear the encampment on Oct. 25.
The Supreme Court said Monday it will hear arguments next March over President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul — a case that could shake the political landscape as voters are deciding if Obama deserves another term. This decision to hear arguments in the spring sets up an election-year showdown over the White House’s main domestic policy achievement. And it allows plenty of time for a decision in late June, just over four months before Election Day. The justices announced they will hear an extraordinary five-and-a-half hours of arguments from lawyers on the constitutionality of a provision at the heart of the law and three other related questions about the act. The central provision in question is the requirement that individuals buy health insurance starting in 2014 or pay a penalty.
Technology News – Week Of November 8, 2011
Apple has released iOS 5.0.1, an update to its mobile OS that fixes a series of issues that drained the iPhone’s battery. iOS 5.0.1 is the first update to Apple’s iOS 5, which brought the notifications tray, increased performance and iCloud to the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.
In addition to fixing the iOS battery issue, 5.0.1. adds multitouch gestures to the original iPad, fixes iCloud bugs and improves voice recognition for Australian iPhone users. This is the first OS update available both via iTunes and over-the-air.
Passing – Boxing great Joe Frazier dies. Muhammad Ali drew the crowds, charmed the media and stole the show. But while Ali is deservedly remembered as “The Greatest,” it was Joe Frazier who defined what being a fighter was truly about. Frazier, who died Monday in his Philadelphia home after a fight with liver cancer, is inextricably linked in boxing history with Ali. They competed in two of the most sensational bouts of all-time and defined an era with their fearsome rivalry.
Entertainment news –
Eddie Murphy quit Wednesday as host of this year’s Oscars, a day after the producer resigned over anti-gay comments, leaving organizers scrambling three months before the awards season climax. Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president Tom Sherak announced Murphy’s departure a day after producer Brett Ratner – director of current box office hit “Tower Heist,” in which Murphy stars — quit as producer of the February show. Billy Crystal will host.
Maury Povich Sleeze – A spokesperson for “Maury” tells Huffington Post that the show has invited “Baby” belter Bieber onto the show, to take a paternity test. (For those who’ve been hiding under a pop culture-repellant rock for the last week, Bieber, 17, has been plagued by accusations leveled by 20-year-old fan Mariah Yeater, who claims that he fathered a child with her when he was 16.) Bieber, who has steadfastly denied Yeater’s claim, has indicated that he’s willing to take a paternity test to clear his, um, name. Whether he wishes to do so under the glare of nationally syndicated television is another matter, but former “Maury” executive producer Amy Rosenblum — who hatched the concept of airing DNA test results on the series — thinks that it could only boost the credibility of Bieber’s denials.
Top albums –
Under the Mistletoe – Justin Bieber
Ambition – Wale
For the Record – Miranda Lambert
21 – Adele
Someone To Watch Over – Susan Boyle
Ceremonials – Florence + The Machine
Mylo Xyloto – Coldplay
Christmas – Michael Buble
Open Invitation – Tyrese
Stronger –Kelly Clarkson
Th1rt3en – Megadeth
Clancy’s Tavern – Toby Keith
Clear As Day – Scotty McCreery
Own The Night – Lady Antebellum
Tha Carter IV – Lil Wayne
Duets II –Tony Bennett
Heavenly Christmas – Jackie Evancho
The Goat Redeo Sessions – Yo-Yo Ma/Stuart Duncan/Edgar Meyer/Chris Thile
It’s no secret that KLOS-FM (Los Angeles) recently dismissed one of the last icons of original rock n’ roll FM radio – Jim Ladd – from its payroll. True, Jim was probably making too much money for his 1op-2a time slot. But, anybody in radio probably saw this coming – including Ladd himself. I mean, how many FM music stations even have a “live” late evening shift anymore? DJ shifts, in the traditional sense, have been disappearing. No more overnight live DJ’s, and, so many day shifts have been supplanted by voice tracks from corporate sister stations. Just this week, A Fresno (CA) FM station fired its two-person morning team and in their place, the voice-tracked morning morning team from WLTW (NY). It’s just the way it is.
Jim Ladd had a great run. KMET/KLOS/KNAC. And, if you’ve been in the DJ business over 20 years, count each day. It’ll be interesting to see where Jim ladd ends up – and for how long. His best days are behind him, but they were great days.
We all miss the days of great DJ’s and their formats, whether it be top-40 radio, album-rock, MOR or otherwise. The memories and the talent and those iconic radio stations will always stand.
I do a lot of marketing consulting. Just over a year ago, businesses couldn’t even get on Groupon’s list – there was a huge wait for call backs. I kept hearing how hot they were – and, well – it was almost a privilege if you were doing business with them.
Today – it’s much different. I’ve often been asked, “should I use Groupon for my business?” I always told my clients to proceed with caution, because, you’re never going to make money with the initial offer, and – those that come in – those customers – are bottom feeders. My research said – that about 3% will even return – that is, those that came in with their Groupon offer.
Now, the Internet is full of stories of just how Groupon is tripping. Oh, and as far as call backs, no problem. In fact, they’ll almost hassel you now – to get into an offer. Recently – for one of of my clients – they’ve called at least 4 times. They really wanted the offer.
So, here is a quick summary of one story out there. Seems that Groupon is really tripping. And, the landscape is now full of Groupons. It’s just not that special any more:
Business – Only a few months ago, Groupon was the Internet’s next great thing. Business media christened it the fastest growing company ever. Copycats proliferated. And investors salivated over the prospect of Groupon going public. Today, the startup that pioneered online daily deals for coupons is an example of how fast an Internet darling can fall. Groupon is discounting its expectations for the IPO that in June was valued as high as $25 billion. In a regulatory filing Friday, the company said that it expects a valuation that is less than half that at between $10.1 billion and $11.4 billion. Groupon is a disaster,” says Sucharita Mulpuru, a Forrester Research analyst. “It’s a shill that’s going to be exposed pretty soon.”
And, did you hear? Early pop-rap pioneer M.C. Hammer is starting his own search engine.
The project, called WireDoo, has been two years in the making, said Hammer (real name Stanley Burrell) this week at the Web 2.0 summit in San Francisco.
Good luck. Internet pop history tells us – it’s littered with search engines old and new. You’d be surprised how many there are – right now.
Mr. Pop History – When it comes to health, the Internet is chock-full of places to go. But, very few document the immense progress of stem cell research, therapy and breakthroughs like Stem Cell TV. For example, stem cell therapy is helping the average consumer – today. And, there’s so much news about stem cell progress – that, it gets lost. Stem Cell TV follows that progress every day.
Stem Cell TV features four channels: A consumer channel, a stem cell headline news channel, a doctor/researcher interview channel and – coming – a stem cell business/biotech channel.
The consumer and headline news videos are for everybody. For example, did you know that even today, your stem cells can be used as face-filler or even heal bad burns? That’s just the beginning. This channel captures consumer news reports on the good things and all the progress being made here.
There’s terrific research coming out each day. And, lot’s of money is being poured into companies specializing in stem cell biotech and equipment.
You can follow it all on this fascinating video blog – updated every day.
Mr. Pop History – My friend Robert Neill got into a discussion with actor Jon Provost. Many remember Jon as the first TV “master” of Lassie.
Well, it seemed that when the camera was off, Lassie’s trainer would have his dog fetch “cigarettes” from as far as a quarter-mile away. Here’s what Robert told me. Thanks Robert Neill:
“The most interesting anecdote, IMO, concerned Lassie’s trainer. Jon said when he was a youngster, he was out at the Weatherwax ranch with Lassie and the trainer. The trainer wanted to smoke, but discovered he’d run out of cigarettes. He instructed Lassie to go back to the house and get some for him. Jon said the house was a quarter mile away and he was skeptical, but Lassie ran to the house and brought back a pack of cigarettes.”
Lassie fetching cigarettes for his master.
If we only knew.
Both Robert and I agree, it would have made a terrific scene in one of the many Jon Provost/Lassie episodes seen on CBS-TV – way back when. Thanks Jon Provost!
Authors Marti Smiley Childs and Jeff March of done it again. Authors of “Echoes of the Sixties” – they’ve got a new book out, “Where Have All The Pop Stars Gone” vol. 1.
Find out where members of such top-pop groups as the Association, The Spiral Starecase, the Zombies, Chris Montez and others, have been up to. Yes, some of passed on, but others, well – life sometimes throws surprising things out. Sometimes – not. The book will hold you captive.
We find out, they’re just like us! Lots of nice surprises and, lest we forget, the book generously lists of all those songs we remember. Remember all the hits of the Association?
Mr. Pop History -
Back in April of 1976, four members of the Jackson 5 sued Motown records, seeking a Superior Court judgment granting termination of any contractual responsibilities to the label and an accounting on alleged royalties due them.
The four were Tariano, Sigmund, Esco, Marlon and Michael Jackson. The suit asked the court to order Motown to allow their accountants to audit Motown books covering royalty statements from 1972 to the present (1976).