You know that company, the one that everyone hates? The one that makes people depressed, the that makes them angry? The one that makes them feel like everyone else in the world is okay and they're the one that's broken and a failure? The one that has every political scandal from interference with elections to negligence over a genocide? The most powerful and invasive ad generation machine ever devised? Well they're about to own VR.
The title is both a joke and not one. Reading dev twitter is horrifying. From Anton to the head of BigScreen, devs are clear about two things. Facebook screws us, they screw Devs, and they have a fucking evil plan for VR; but there's no stopping them. As Anton said. "there is no second party in VR that cares as much as them," to the end. To be clear, Valve has done a lot for VR and I think it would be much smaller and a lot worse without them. Not just steam but making the Vive and inventing room scale. If you don't know, Oculus originally was partnered with Valve, but Valve didn't buy them, then Facebook secretly bought them and ripped them away from Valve who was literally sharing hardware and software with them freely. Not just that but Micheal Abrash worked at Valve and shut down their entire AR division, firing everyone, then jumped ship and became an exec at facebook. Valve has been in this for years.
The problem is that for all their work, the stakes are now higher, not lower. Facebook is making a platform and capturing the whole medium. The point of this move was to remove a key thorn in their plans, and make a clear statement. They need to be able to do what they want freely in VR and they just went for the nuclear option and are killing whatever identity Oculus had. Soon you will need a facebook account to turn your VR headset from a paperweight into a useable device. And when Facebook is how games have avatars, multiplayer, every little feature or function, then crossplay breaks down. I've already talked to Devs who are making facebook only games since they need access to things that are only in the Oculus API. What happens when games are just rooms in Horizon? Horizon is a social platform clearly channeling The Oasis, something more ironic than I can convey right now. Facebook clearly thinks that by doing this now, before their big conference, they can get all the anger out now and trade their current customers for brand new ones who don't realize what has changed or don't care. They think the Quest will sell 100 million units and everyone in their way will be crushed like a bug. They care more than everyone else because they're coming for every drop of blood.
A company for which users are the product, not the customer, should not be in VR. Just flat out, VR is the creation of entire worlds, entire realities, and it's a big deal as we've all been telling ourselves. And that means the flaws and ambitions of the companies involved are magnified a lot. This is a clever company too. Their "big privacy initiative" a few years back told people that they would be able to hide anything they want from their friends.... but not from facebook. Your friends aren't the point of facebook, they're just the carrot that make you hand over your data, which is then handed to advertisers.
I'm not going to get into all the details of facebook but you can watch the john oliver piece
about it for some of the details (including a genocide that facebook actively made worse). He doesn't even get into all of it. A few things he doesn't mention: Facebook's primary product accounting for 90% or more of their revenue is ads. Ads aren't a big seller usually so they actually are a pioneering targeted ad company. Now that may sound normal at first but you need to think about how it actually works. Ad buyers on facebook at one point could sell ads to a category called "jew hater," that's how automated and insane their system is. Another thing Oliver doesn't mention is the Facebook Free Basic program. This was a program that would have set up facebook satellites and service in India. But the catch was that you could only use facebook's systems and everything was financially and technically steered towards their services top to bottom. To India this was an outrage, basically swooping in and colonizing their digital life. India's parliament voted it down and the facebook VP in the country said "India has gone with anti imperialism, clearly that has worked so well for them for the last 60 years." Facebook experimented on teenagers manipulating their moods through their feeds (to the point of depression) without consent, the study showing it absolutely had an effect, and it's entirely possible teens could have actively self harmed as a result. Facebook told people that if they wanted to make sure their nudes couldn't be posted on facebook, they should send their nudes to facebook to feed into the automated system. The list goes on and on.
A lot of people don't think about the full implications of this. Your oculus account won't just require a facebook account, it will be one. In the sense that when you're in VR, what you do will be no less subject to facebook's scrutiny than on their site. On Horizon? Everything you do or say is fair game, what rooms you hang out in, who you talk to. On a third party app? You're still using their (depth aware) api and runtimes so they have access and since Facebook for flatscreen follows you after you leave the site it's far from unreasonable to think some fraction of their invasive behavior there will carry over. It's really hard to protect your data from them, even if you just have a burner account. Facebook even has "shadow profiles," which are profiles for people who don't even have accounts with the site, with their photo info, friends and family, and personal info. They were secret but they leaked years back.
This whole situation made me want to throw up. There is no feeling of "I told you so" satisfaction when you see Devs openly afraid online. When people who worked for Mozilla on VR are saying "If Facebook is going to be the only platform for VR, I am actively opposed to it, I have an ethical imperative." (Mozilla was working on something called "WebXR," which was supposed to be a way to spread and use VR content like using the web, totally free and open. Well the pandemic has hit them so hard that they had to close their entire VR division and now all their work basically belongs to facebook). When some outspoken devs are saying "they knew that devs are on the brink of bankruptcy in this pandemic and can't afford to walk away from Oculus." This is real, this is the actual reality that facebook is betting you'd rather put on a headset and run away from into their garden rather than face.
The real question I have right now is whether tech and especially VR journalism will actually wake up. Interview devs who are getting screwed by facebook, report on these problems, mention in every article about the quest that you have to have a facebook account, and stop giving their free marketing just because it gets clicks. And when facebook has a scandal, you avoided reporting on it before because it was facebook, not oculus, but now oculus doesn't exist so you need to be reporting on the company that wants to build whole realities and control this industry.
So what should Valve do? Something. This is new ground for them I'm sure, and it's such a complicated company that they could be fighting over this inside and we don't know. But the fact is that Valve is the largest and most serious player in this space after Facebook but people have so little faith that they care enough to fight facebook that after reading hundreds of threads by devs on all this, not a single one even mentions Valve. Maybe they can hire a bunch of VR studios to add open source functionalities to SteamVR like a WebXR browser, they could make systems like avatars and other services for free to give devs with few resources a way to compete, maybe they can make deals with content suppliers like big screen so they can sell their movie tickets without anyone taking a cut, maybe they can host webXR content really cheaply so Facebook loses people to WebXR as a platform. I really hope they're working with multiple manufacturers to make an "android" system of standalones to compete with facebook's "iOS." They have a small staff but a large warchest and a lot of attention.
Maybe Valve can't or doesn't want to do anything, and we have to hope for some traditional company to fight with facebook, the problem is that it took a decade for Epic to take on Apple, and we need something to happen now. https://twitter.com/bai0/status/1295806708019687424 https://twitter.com/DShankastatus/1295825809496629248
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopediaJump to navigationJump to search"Rick Roll" redirects here. It is not to be confused with Richard Roll.
📷A still frame from the music video of the song "Never Gonna Give You Up
" by Rick Astley
, taken in 2008. Rickrolling
, alternatively rick-rolling
, is a prank
and an Internet meme
involving an unexpected appearance of the music video
for the 1987 Rick Astley
song "Never Gonna Give You Up
". The meme is a type of bait and switch
using a disguised hyperlink
that leads to the music video. When victims click on a seemingly unrelated link, the site with the music video loads instead of what was expected, and in doing so they are said to have been "rickrolled". The meme has also extended to using the song's lyrics in unexpected places.
The meme grew out from a similar bait-and-switch trick called "duckrolling" that was popular on the 4chan
website in 2006. The video bait-and-switch trick grew popular on 4chan by the 2007 April Fools' Day, and spread to other Internet sites later that year. The meme gained mainstream attention in 2008 through several publicized events, particularly when YouTube
used it on its 2008 April Fools' Day event.
Initially, Astley, who had only recently returned to performing after a ten-year hiatus, was hesitant about using his newfound popularity from the meme to further his career, but accepted the fame when he rickrolled the 2008 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
with a surprise performance of the song. Since then, Astley has seen his performance career revitalized by the meme's popularity.
"Never Gonna Give You Up" appeared on Astley's 1987 debut album Whenever You Need Somebody
The song, his solo debut single, was a number-one hit on several international charts, including the Billboard Hot 100
, Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks
, and the UK Singles Chart
. The accompanying music video, Astley's first, features him performing the song while dancing.
It since had become a popular song on the Internet, particularly after it was featured in the 2005 "Charlie Has Cancer
" episode of It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
The use of the song for rickrolling dates to 2006, originating from the 4chan imageboard
from an early meme known as "duckrolling". Sometime in 2006, the site moderator, Christopher "m00t" Poole
implemented a word filter replacing the word "egg" with "duck" as a gag. On one thread, where "eggroll" had become "duckroll", an anonymous user posted an edited
image of a duck with wheels, calling it a "duckroll". The image caught on across 4chan; the image would be the target of a hyperlink
with an otherwise interesting title, with a user clicking through having been said to be "duckrolled".
In March 2007, the first trailer for the highly-anticipated Grand Theft Auto IV
was released onto Rockstar Games
website. Viewership was so high that it crashed Rockstar's site. Several users helped to post mirrors of the video on different sites, but one user on 4chan had linked to the "Never Gonna Give You Up" video claiming to be the trailer, tricking numerous readers into the bait-and-switch. This practice quickly replaced duckrolling for other alluring links, all generally pointing to Astley's video, and thus creating the practice of "rickrolling".
The bait-and-switch to the "Never Gonna Give You Up" greatly expanded on 4chan on April Fools' Day
in 2007, and led to the trick expanding to other sites like Fark
later that year, quickly gaining the name "rickrolling" based on the prior "duckrolling".
An initial use of "rickrolling" was confirmed by the editors of Know Your Meme
, where rural Michigan resident Erik Helwig had called into a local radio sports-talk show in 2006 and instead of conversing with the DJs, simply played "Never Gonna Give You Up", leaving the DJs speechless. While this occurred before the 4chan use, Know Your Meme
editor-in-chief Don Caldwell said there was no direct confirmation if it had inspired the 4chan use of the video.
Growth in 2008
📷A Rick Astley impersonator during one of the March 2008 rickrolls at a collegiate basketball game
Rickrolling started to appear in more mainstream sources during 2008, with a SurveyUSA
April 2008 poll estimating that at least 18 million American adults had been rickrolled.
One of the first public events involved the Church of Scientology
which had been aggressively trying to censor videos critical of the church. The Internet group Anonymous
) as part of their Project Chanology
to challenge this censoring, protested at the Church's various headquarters across the globe by chanting the song, among other activities.
A number of collegiate basketball games in March 2008 had people dressing up as Astley from the video and lip-syncing to the music as a prank before the start of the game. YouTube
's 2008 April Fools joke made featured video hyperlinks on the site's home page end up on the music video.
In April 2008, the New York Mets
baseball team asked fans on the internet what song they should use for their eighth-inning rally song. "Never Gonna Give You Up" received a massive number of votes, driven by websites like 4chan.
At the 2008 MTV Europe Music Awards
, an online campaign led to Astley being named the "Best Act Ever" despite not being on the original shortlist of nominees, effectively rickrolling the awards.
📷Astley performing the song during the 2008 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
By November 2008, the "Never Gonna Give You Up" video on YouTube had more than 20 million views and was considered a viral video
, however Astley initially appeared indifferent to the newfound fame.
When Astley was asked about the trend of rickrolling during an interview in March 2008, he stated, "it's weird," since he had not performed much lately, but he found the interest funny.
However, at the 2008 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade
, Astley made a surprise appearance on a float
) for Cartoon Network
to lip-sync the song to the crowd and television audiences, making that performance the largest rickroll to date.
According to Astley, Cartoon Network had urged him to perform for the parade along with a large performance payment, and although he had been wary of trying to promote himself using the popularity of the meme, decided to go for it.
In September 2009, Wired
) magazine published a guide to modern hoaxes which listed rickrolling as one of the better known beginner-level hoaxes, alongside the fake e-mail chain letter
The term has been extended to simple hidden use of the song's lyrics. Cover versions
of "Never Gonna Give You Up" have also been used as part of rickrolling; in April 2018, the creators of TV's Westworld
) released a video that purported to be a spoiler guide for the entire second season in advance, but instead featured lead actress Evan Rachel Wood
singing the song while accompanied by another main actress, Angela Sarafyan
, playing the piano.
The most popular upload of the music video
from 2007 used for rickrolling, titled "RickRoll'D", was removed for terms-of-use violations in February 2010
but the takedown was revoked within a day.
It was taken down again on 18 July 2014.
It has since been unblocked again and has gained over 81 million views as of February 2020.
The Official Rick Astley channel uploaded another version
on 24 October 2009, which has over 760 million views as of September 2020.
Its meme status led to the song's usage in the post-credits scene for Walt Disney Animation Studios
's 2018 film Ralph Breaks the Internet
, the sequel to 2012's Wreck-It Ralph
. The song also appears in the film Bumblebee
), and was featured at the end of its initial teaser trailer.
On 5 January 2018, Paul Fenwick announced that he had started several Rick Astley hotlines, which when called, would play "Never Gonna Give You Up" along with several other artist's adaptations of it. Paul Fenwick advertised it as "You are encouraged to use them for paperwork, loyalty schemes, and general joy."
By 2019, the popularity of rickrolling had diminished, however on 25 August, a notable large-scale occurrence happened at Petco Park
in San Diego
during a Major League Baseball
game between the Boston Red Sox
and the San Diego Padres
—the first game that the Red Sox played at Petco Park in six years. During a mid-inning break, the Padres' scoreboard began to play "Sweet Caroline
"—a tradition at Red Sox home games in Fenway Park
—but the Red Sox were the opposition in San Diego. As the Neil Diamond
song was about to reach the chorus, however, the video-board suddenly switched to "Never Gonna Give You Up", much to the amusement of the crowd.
On 13 October 2019, the Sunday night NFL
game between the Pittsburgh Steelers
and Los Angeles Chargers
at Dignity Health Sports Park
featured a case of rickrolling when the PA announcers, after a Chargers touchdown brought the score to 24-10 Pittsburgh, decided to troll
the partisan crowd
by playing the beginning of the Styx
) song "Renegade
)" (which had been played at the Steelers home Heinz Field
since 2001) only to transition into "Never Gonna Give You Up". The stunt caught fans and players from both teams by surprise (even being acknowledged by the Steelers official social media
accounts), and some Chargers players were not happy about the Steelers anthem being played in their own home stadium. The Steelers won the game 24–17.
📷Astley performing in 2017
In an interview in March 2008, Astley said that he found the rickrolling of Scientology to be "hilarious"; he also said that he will not try to capitalise on the rickroll phenomenon with a new recording or remix
of his own, but that he would be happy to have other artists remix it. Overall, Astley is not troubled by the phenomenon, stating that he finds it "bizarre and funny" and that his only concern is that his "daughter doesn't get embarrassed about it."
A spokesperson for Astley's record label released a comment which showed that Astley's interest with the phenomenon had faded, as they stated, "I'm sorry, but he's done talking about Rickrolling".
In November 2008, Astley was nominated for "Best Act Ever
" at the MTV Europe Music Awards
after the online nomination form was flooded with votes.
The push to make Astley the winner of the award, as well as efforts to encourage MTV to personally invite Astley to the awards ceremony, continued after the announcement.
On 10 October, Astley's website confirmed that an invitation to the awards had been received. On 6 November 2008, just hours before the ceremony was due to air, it was reported that MTV Europe did not want to give Astley the award at the ceremony, instead wanting to present it at a later date. Many fans who voted for Astley felt the awards ceremony failed to acknowledge him as a legitimate artist. Astley stated in an interview that he felt the award was "daft", but noted that he thought that "MTV were thoroughly rickrolled", and went on to thank everyone who voted for him.
In 2009, Astley wrote about 4chan
) magazine's annual Time 100
issue, and thanked moot for the rickrolling phenomenon.
According to The Register
, as of 2010, Astley had only directly received $12 in performance royalties
from YouTube. Although by that time the song had been played 39 million times, Astley did not compose the song and received only a performer's share of the sound recording copyright.
However, Astley denied those reports in 2016.
dont ask why i need this