A Definitive List of the Best #BottleCapChallenge Responses

It all started with a Taekwondo champion in Almaty, Kazakhstan. An expertly executed spinning kick posted on Instagram that resulted in the cap of a water bottle spinning off. With it, a challenge into the social media ether, tagging some of the world’s best known action stars and fighters. View this post on Instagram New Challenge with #farakickschallenge 😉! Sending a challenge @jasonstatham @thenotoriousmma @jcvd @jackiechan . Waiting for you video friends .🥋🔥 â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € ⠀⠀ â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € â € #bottlecapchallenge #farakicks #farakickschallenge #mixedmartialarts #tkd #taekwondowtf #taekwondo #fighter #sidekick #trainning #jeetkunedo …

Amazon Spark, the retailers two-year-old Instagram competitor, has shut down

Amazon’s two-year-old Instagram competitor, Amazon Spark, is no more. Hoping to capitalize on the social shopping trend and tap into the power of online influencers, Amazon in 2017 launched its own take on Instagram with a shoppable feed of stories and photos aimed at Prime members. The experiment known as Amazon Spark has now come to an end. However, the learnings from Spark and Amazon’s discovery tool Interesting Finds are being blended into a new social-inspired product, #FoundItOnAmazon. Amazon Spark had been a fairly bland service, if truth be told. Unlike on Instagram, where people follow their friend, interests, brands like they like, and people they find engaging or inspiring, Spark was focused on the shopping and the sale. While …

Fitness startup Mirror nears $300M valuation with fresh funding

Today, Peloton is a bonafide success. The company, which sells $2,245 internet-connected exercise bikes, boasts a $4 billion valuation and a cult following. That hasn’t always been the case. For years, Peloton battled for venture capital investment and struggled to attract buyers. Now that it’s proven the market for tech-enabled home exercise equipment and affiliated subscription products, a whole bunch of startups are chasing down the same customer segment. Mirror, a New York-based company that sells $1,495 full-length mirrors that double as interactive home gyms, is closing in a round of funding expected to reach $36 million, sources and Delaware stock filings confirm, at a valuation just under $300 million. It’s unclear who has signed on to lead the round; …

Instagram one-ups TikTok with karaoke lyrics

Lip-syncing jumpstarted TikTok’s rise to the center of teen culture, arguably displacing Instagram . Now the Facebook-owned app is striking back with a new feature that lets you displays lyrics on your video Story synced to a soundtrack you’ve added with the Music sticker. Lyrics could help creators and their fans sing along, and the visual flare could make the amateur MTV content more watchable. Instagram scored a big endorsement from teen scare-pop phenomenon Billie Eilish who’s featured in the demo video for Story lyrics, which are now available in all the countries where Instagram Music has launched including the US, Germany, and France. But TikTok isn’t waiting up. Today it launched its own text feature for adding overlaid captions …

What the College Scandal Shallowfakes Reveal About the Rich

Photoshop played an outsize role in the odious college admissions scandal that broke earlier this year. Rick Singer, the concierge to the stars who pleaded guilty in March to money laundering and racketeering in a scheme to get rich children into luxury-brand colleges, used the software to graft the heads of teens onto the muscled bodies of elite athletes. With the Photoshopped water polo image in particular, the one that helped an undistinguished high schooler get recruited by USC, Singer seems to have created a mythological creature—a Ceto for the digital age. Call them the Collegiae: They’ve got the heads of princesses and the bodies of serpents. To mark the moment, a Twitter friend, Peter Mohan, ginned up an image …

Instagram rolls out a new shopping feature

Instagram will let influencers add shopping tags to posts.Image: instagram It was only a matter of time: Instagram is handing over some of its new shopping features to influencers.  Beginning next week, a few dozen influencers and publishers can start tagging specific products, which can be purchased through the Instagram app, in their posts. This move doesn’t let influencers hawk their own products, but it does allow them to add Instagram’s shoppable tags to their posts. When they tag a brand’s product, their followers will be able to buy the item with Instagram’s new checkout feature. Previously, only a handful of brands could use shoppable tags, and only in their own posts. But with this change, a group of high …

Men’s makeup brands are discreet and all over Instagram

It's not a fancy pen, it's a concealer stick.Image: Stryx Nestled on my Instagram feed between a picture of a high school friend living their adult life and one of the Kardashians (they’re starting to blur together), was a sponsored post for “makeup for men” entitled War Paint. As I sat there watching the ad jump to life— a tattooed man covering his well-lit skin with a black beauty blender— I couldn’t get over the fact that it’s literally called “War Paint.” Over time, I scrolled into more of these sponsored ads, like a weasel wandering into well-laid traps. Granted, I’m a gay guy who’s been wearing makeup since high school; some tinted moisturizer here, some blush there, but makeup …