It’s been a week where Democrats debated (and, in the process, the world discovered how scary Jim Webb could be), and the Cubs tried their hardest to make Back to the Future Part II come true—but you know that already. What you’re here for are the other big stories from the web over the last seven days. In that case, relax, sit back and try not to think about the prospect of aliens hiding at the edge of the galaxy. No, really. Just don’t give it a second thought.

I Pledge My Allegiance to the Fad

What Happened: A columnist for the Los Angeles Times offered up “The Millennial Pledge.” The internet rejected it.

Where It Blew Up: Twitter, blogs, media think pieces

What Really Happened: Last weekend, LA Times columnist Chris Erskine published a column in which he suggested that millennials—which he defined as people ages 18 to 34—could “do better,” and wrote out a 46-point “pledge” to help them do that, which veered between attempts at comedy (“If I hate my new job, I will not fake my own death”) and surreal scolding (“I am entitled to nothing,” “I will show up on time,” “When I get my way, I will be grateful and not assume that I will always get my way”). Erskine doubled down on the latter with his Twitter link to the column (above).

Twitter’s response was … well, you can see for yourself:

Elsewhere, people created point-by-point rebuttals, lists of which points were actually valid advice, decried the piece as a reason why millennials don’t read newspapers, and offered up alternatives, written from the millennial point of view. Let’s just say that a lot of people talked about it. Which, Erskine reasoned in a second column, was the entire point.

“As you might expect, the first wave of reaction was from older readers, who’d seen it in print (and wake up before 7 a.m.),” he wrote. “The second and third wave came from millennials themselves, who proved to be frightfully smug and humorless over the whole thing. To me, this is what you get when you raise an entire generation without spanking.”

Oh, it got better: “Look, I get it,” he continued. “We haven’t handed the millennials a world in mint condition. No parents ever do. But we’ve spread democracy, reduced Communism, virtually eliminated the constant threat of nuclear elimination. Has any single one of you punks been drafted?”

The Takeaway: Take it away, Jay Rosen:

Twitter Finally Pays Off for Someone

What Happened: A conversation between a cartoonist, a pharmaceutical kingpin, and a sock puppet took a very unexpected turn on Twitter.

Where It Blew Up: Twitter, blogs

What Really Happened: Hey, remember Martin Shkreli? The biotech investor who raised the price of his toxoplasmosis drug from $13.50 to $750 per pill, then promised to reduce it after the entire world responded with outrage? Well, he’s not actually reduced the price yet, but he was involved in a somewhat surreal exchange online recently.

Let’s start with the cartoon that editorial cartoonist Matt Bors posted on Twitter for Shkreli’s attention.

That led to this exchange:

So far, so awkward for Shkreli. But then things got weird, courtesy of a mysterious newly created account.

Ready for the twist in the tale?

Later, Bors revealed, “I did look into the donor and while I don’t know if they want identified publicly or not, they are definitely of means and someone with a stake in this debate, so as shocking as this may seem to us normals, throwing around ten grand is nothing to them.” The promised debate between the mysterious rich dude (because, come on, it’s almost certainly a man) and Bors has yet to happen, but we all wait with bated breath.

The Takeaway: Apparently, sock puppets have a lot of money to put where their mouths are. Suddenly, I feel that all of my own Twitter arguments have been especially unproductive because no one’s ever offered me thousands of dollars to disagree with them. Have I been internet-ing all wrong?

Highlights Coming Later, As Long As We’re Not Shut Down

What Happened: Twitter took down two pretty big accounts earlier this week temporarily, prompting much concern about the power of big business when it comes to online freedom of speech.

Where It Blew Up: Twitter, blogs, media think pieces

What Really Happened: Twitter followers of sports sites Deadspin and SB Nation might have found themselves wondering what was going on Monday, when both accounts disappeared without warning, with visitors to their Twitter pages getting “Account Suspended” error messages. It turned out that the accounts were both apparently shut down as a result of Twitter receiving DMCA takedown notices from the NFL, unhappy that the accounts were posting GIFs from football games without permission.

For its part, the NFL said it “did not request that any Twitter account be suspended,” but admitted that it had asked the company to “disable links to more than a dozen pirated NFL game videos and highlights that violate the NFL’s copyrights.” However, the NFL wasn’t the only company after Deadspin; it turned out that the Ultimate Fighting Championship had asked Twitter to kill that account, writing in a separate takedown notice that Twitter should “immediately disable access to the individual who has uploaded the copyright infringing content.”

Both accounts were eventually restored, but not before drawing attention to how little control people have over their tweets. (Although, as Mashable pointed out, there’s no real “fair use” defense for posting gifs on Twitter, so, you know.)

Deadspin, at least, took the entire thing in its stride, asking the important questions. “Why were we suspended?” the site asked, somewhat rhetorically. “What shadowy forces at BIG TWEET were conspiring against us? And why are we stupid enough to put the fate of our traffic in the hands of a third-party social network platform that, for all we know, is run by gargoyles?”

The Takeaway: Everyone, stop posting GIFs on Twitter. Just in case.

Insert Joke About Reading For The Articles Here

What Happened: Playboy announced that it was giving up nudity, which was apparently the last straw for many.

Where It Blew Up: Twitter, blogs, media think pieces

What Really Happened: It’s the end of an era (If admittedly, an era that was arguably past its prime), with Playboy revealing that it will no longer be publishing nudes in the magazine, because, as chief executive Scott Flanders explained, “You’re now one click away from every sex act imaginable for free. And so it’s just passé at this juncture.” Yes, Internet, you killed Playboy. I hope you’re happy.

(This is where I add that Playboy isn’t actually dead at all, and I actually write there, so I’m somewhat biased on that front. But moving on.)

The announcement sent shockwaves across the internet, with the move appalling old men and intriguing women. (Well, not all women; at least one former Playmate isn’t on board with the change.) Some wanted the chance to edit the new magazine, while others wondered if the decision will be Playboy’s salvation or last gasp, or just something that should’ve happened a long time ago.

The Takeaway: At least it’s keeping the all-important logo. It’s all about branding, these days.

You Can Write It in a Letter, Either Way I Need to Know

What Happened: Jennifer Lawrence rails against institutionalized sexism in Hollywood in the most unexpected place: a newsletter from Lena Dunham.

Where It Blew Up: Twitter, blogs, media think pieces

What Really Happened: Proof that e-newsletters are still a viable medium came this week in the form of an edition of Lenny Letter, the newsletter from Girls producers Lena Dunham and Jenni Konner, which featured a micro-essay by Jennifer Lawrence about gendered pay equality and sexism in the workplace. “A few weeks ago at work, I spoke my mind and gave my opinion in a clear and no-bullshit way; no aggression, just blunt,” she wrote. “The man I was working with (actually, he was working for me) said, ‘Whoa! We’re all on the same team here!’ As if I was yelling at him. I was so shocked because nothing that I said was personal, offensive, or, to be honest, wrong. All I hear and see all day are men speaking their opinions, and I give mine in the same exact manner, and you would have thought I had said something offensive.”

It was, in all honesty, a light piece that didn’t really offer any new insight but reinforced that Jennifer Lawrence seems kind of cool—but it was nonetheless famous actress Jennifer Lawrence writing it, which meant that it quickly went viral, with many pieces applauding the piece.

Twitter was, in part, less onboard the Lawrence train, however:

Meanwhile, the piece certainly hit a nerve with Lawrence’s fellow actors, with Emma Watson, Bradley Cooper, Jessica Chastain and Mia Wasikowska all responding favorably to what Lawrence had to say. “There’s no reason why she should be doing a film with other actors and get paid less than her male co-stars,” Chastain said. “It’s completely unfair. It’s not right. It’s been happening for years and years and years. I think it’s brave to talk about it. I think everyone should talk about it.” Or, you know, write a newsletter essay. That seems to get people talking.

The Takeaway: If nothing else, it’d be fascinating to be a fly on the wall for JLaw’s next contract negotiations, now that she has decided to ask for what she’s worth while also being one of the most bankable stars in Hollywood right now. Studios, open your wallets, as well as your minds.

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While You Were Offline: Have You Taken the Millennial Pledge?