The attractiveness-rating website Hot or Not was founded in 2000 by Silicon Valley engineers James Hong and Jim Young to serve as "a technical solution to a disagreement they made one day over a passing woman's attractiveness." Phrased originally as a question ("Am I Hot or Not?"), it dropped the "Am I" for the catchier "Hot or Not," whose lack of question mark makes the interrogation feel more grim and reminds you that it is a mechanized poll conducted by a non-person. Hot or Not eventually evolved into a matchmaking site, one that falls somewhere between OkCupid and Adult Friend Finder on the yardstick of creepiness. While Hot or Not came after RateMyFace (1999) and AmIHot (also 2000) and didn't add any new functions to the Y/N photo-rating concept, it was more popular than either of its forebears.
Mark Zuckerberg was inspired by Hot or Not to create Facemash, the early version of Facebook, as mythologized in The Social Network. Likewise the founders of YouTube originally planned to develop online video content just so they could create a site like Hot or Not with video.Jawed Karim, who cofounded YouTube and designed much of PayPal, has said that Hot or Not was so monumental because "anyone could upload content that everyone else could view. That was a new concept because up until that point, it was always the people who owned the website who would provide the content." It probably didn't hurt that most of these developers were teenage boys when Hot or Not launched, placing them firmly in the site's target demo.
In which the Grantland staff unearths previously unheralded snippets of greatness so that a wider audience may enjoy them.
I may or may not search YouTube for live Bob Seger performances from the 1970s from time to time, just to see if anything good has been added since the last time I may or may not have searched for live Bob Seger performances from the 1970s. Don't judge me. (In my defense, the 1970s Seger-Springsteen rivalry was the musical equivalent of the Tom Hanks–Michael Keaton 1980s rivalry — in other words, it was a MUCH better argument for a short time than anyone remembers.) My latest Seger search led to me stumbling across a shirtless guy named Ricky performing a surprisingly good cover of the underrated Seger song "Till It Shines." I'd argue it's the best shirtless acoustic cover on YouTube right now, and much better than Ricky's other shirtless acoustic performances of "Man of the World," "Shoot You Down," "She Belongs to Me" and "My Song." This is everything that's right/wrong/confusing/creepy/inexplicable/entertaining/haunting about YouTube in just 163 seconds. I wish I could unsee Ricky, but I can't ... and now, you can't, either.
I love movies. More specifically, I LOVE Star Wars.
So when I found out I was going to get the opportunity to create some content for the Grantland Channel, I knew the first thing I wanted to do is go up to San Francisco and visit Lucasfilm’s Industrial Light and Magic. Somehow, stupidly, they said yes.
Tracy Morgan joins Cousin Sal and Bill Simmons to describe his alter ego, Chico Divine, and what he can remember from the time he was naked in Jimmy Kimmel’s green room. He also chats about the time he was kicked out of Prince’s house, his Saturday Night Live audition, and his favorite memory from 30 Rock. Plus! His new TV project and much, much more.