It’s maybe a sign of the impending apocalypse that is the US presidential election, but it’s been a very political week online. And it’s not just America that’s getting the attention. In the UK, Brexit is impacting what’s on sale in supermarkets, and in Nigeria the president is saying ridiculously sexist things. Whatever happened to random, light-hearted yuks, and will we ever be able to get back to them? While you ponder that important question, here are some things you might have missed over the past week—most of which include Donald Trump. Sorry, all.

Like Donald Trump, Godzilla Would Like His Shackles Off

What Happened: If you looked at Donald Trump and thought, “You know, I might like him better if he wasn’t shackled,” then this was apparently your lucky week.
Where It Blew Up: Twitter
What Really Happened: As Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump found himself at odds, yet again, with members of the GOP establishment at the start of the week, he did what everyone expected him to—post a surreal tweet that boasted of his strength and power that seemed almost self-parodic.

Thankfully, Twitter knew exactly how to respond to this message. Namely, offer up suggestions of who else might have said such a thing:

The Takeaway: Of course, it would be an error to think that unshackled would be the final transformation…

Wait, Repeal the What Now?

What Happened: Supporters of the Republican presidential candidate have a new theory about how to win the election: deny women the right to vote.
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: Nate Silver, who loves numbers like Kylo Ren loves smushed headwear, wrote a column this week revealing that, were only men to vote in the upcoming presidential election, Donald Trump would win by a surprisingly high margin. A sign, perhaps, that it’s a good thing that all genders have the vote, there was a certain section of the Internet who felt otherwise:

Repeal the 19th? you’re asking yourself. The 19th what? That would be the 19th Amendment to the US Constitution, which was ratified on Aug. 18, 1920 and gave women the right to vote in the United States. That’s right; people are calling for women to be stripped of their rights in order for the election to turn out the way they want.

Unsurprisingly, this caught the attention of the media. Equally unsurprisingly, it caught the attention of plenty of other people on Twitter:

The irony is this; it didn’t actually become a Trending Topic on Twitter until it was being used by those arguing against the hashtag. On the plus side, that means that far more people are against the idea than for it, which is something. Right?
The Takeaway: More than one person came up with the following suggestion for an alternative to repealing the 19th Amendment. It’s not that bad an idea, considering the evidence.

In Which the Internet Learns to Love a Lawyer

What Happened: Against all odds and the general public perception of his chosen career, the general counsel for the New York Times might have won the Internet this week.
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: It started with a report from the New York Times about two women who claimed that Donald Trump had, as the headline put it, “touched them inappropriately”—something that the Republican presidential nominee stated very clearly he had never done during last weekend’s debate.

In response, this happened:

That led to this reply from the Times’ general counsel, David E. McCraw, which pushed back against allegations of libel in the most wonderful way. “The essence of a libel claim, of course, is the protection of one’s reputation,” McCraw writes at one point. “Nothing in our article has had the slightest effect on the reputation that Mr. Trump, through his own words and actions, has already created.” The letter ends with, “If Mr. Trump disagrees, if he believes that American citizens had no right to hear what these women had to say and that the law of this country forces us and those who would dare to criticize him to stand silent or be punished, we welcome the opportunity to have a court set him straight.”

Twitter approved:

It turns out, the Times has good reason to be so bold; if Trump does sue, the discovery process of the lawsuit could allow the Times to find out all manner of misdeeds Trump might have committed. As MSNBC’s chief legal correspondent Ari Melber put it:

As of this writing, the Trump campaign has made no further moves to litigate this particular case.

The Takeaway: But back, for a second, to NYT counsel David E. McCraw. Could be there’s another very good reason to believe that he’s won the Internet.

How to Win and Lose the World in One Week Or Less

What Happened: Meet Kenneth Bone. He’s about to learn the upside—and downside—to interacting with the Internet.
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: When we think about the half-life of an Internet meme, perhaps we should ponder the case of one Ken Bone. One of the “undecided voters” who spoke at the debate Sunday night, he was quickly declared the winner of the night, because… well, he looked cute and kind of like a cartoon character, to be honest. (Plus, that name!) The Internet couldn’t help itself but embrace him, and it didn’t even try. For example, take a look at the #KenBoneFacts hashtag, just one of multiple Bone-related memes flying around after the debate:

Bone himself was eager to play along, signing up for Twitter and joining in on the jokes:

He also signed up to hype UberSelect, a move that lost him some fans when he tweeted out his first endorsement. (Never mind the fact that it might have been illegal to do so, which might explain why the tweet no longer exists.)

Oh, but wait; things got worse when it turned out that Bone had a history of making unfortunate comments on Reddit over the last few years.

Of course, the knives were soon out.

Oh, Ken. We hardly knew you…
The Takeaway: If there’s one upside of the whole thing, perhaps it’s the cheap jokes that can be made.

I’ll Take Losers For $500, Alex

What Happened: Alex Trebek, who knew you had quite such a cruel streak in you?
Where It Blew Up: Twitter, media reports
What Really Happened: Look, there’s no way around it: Jeopardy host Alex Trebek is a hardcore meanie. Don’t believe us? Just watch this:

While Trebek’s comments briefly made Jeopardy viral again, Twitter wasn’t quite sure whether it was impressed or appalled by the exchange:

This could start a whole new thing for game show hosts looking to insult Internet-friendly subcultures in the hope of reminding people that their show is still on the air. Quick! Someone get Pat Sajak an attendee of DashCon so that he can talk about ball pits!
The Takeaway: Of course, just because Alex Trebek isn’t a fan doesn’t mean that nerdcore is ready to take the insult lying down. Welcome to the next big, pointless, online beef:


While You Were Offline: People on Twitter Don’t Think Women Should Vote