Popular Culture – More and More Bizarre

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Popular culture today has reached a point where it's never been more bizarre. 'Popular culture' is a term that describes a kind of public psyche or shared opinion for what's currently in vogue or in style, who the 'household names' are and what everyone is talking about around the water fountain. Of course to an extent the major news items will dominate these kinds of conversations and blog posts, but more and more in recent times we've had other things on our mind. For example, you might find yourself asking your colleagues whether you 'saw that thing where all the inmates of that prison where everyone danced to Michael Jackon's Thriller?'. This is how pop culture has become bizarre.

If you don't know the video then chances are that you might know one of many others. You might be aware of man who cried on YouTube and told his followers to 'leave Britney alone', or of the runaway unexpected stars 'JedWard' from Xfactor in the UK.

These are the kinds of things that you couldn't predict would have such an effect, where the public have spoken on what they enjoy and by word of mouth a boy wielding a light saber or a cat playing a keyboard can become a legend.

Meanwhile you get your pop culture moments and videos, there are also pop culture 'icons' who for whatever reason rise to levels of fame that weren't expected of them. Often these characters are fictional, small players in ensemble movies or comic book or cartoon characters. These famously include such heroes as Homer Simpson, Tony Stark, Scarface, Heath Ledger's Joker, Superman, Captain Jack Sparrow or Doctor Who. Meanwhile characters from History have found a lot of popularity or from bygone Hollywood such as Che Guevara or Marylyn Munroe.

Now more than ever though, bizarre and unexpected people, videos, songs and moments are cementing themselves as a part of our 'pop' culture, and one reason for this might be that technology allows us more and more to choose what we see and to share it with other people. While Che Guevara has for years graced the walls of student residences on posters, today he finds himself on websites and Facebook pages. Meanwhile where once a favourite clip from TV or film might have only reached a certain audience, today people will be able to watch it over and over on YouTube, write about it on their blogs and 'Tweet' it on Twitter. Even more powerful is the fact that now anyone can upload their own two minutes of fame and create a viral hit which might spread to become a moment in pop culture.

This means people are picking out their own pop culture more than ever, and choosing en-masse what reaches those lofty heights. At the same time the fact that you can find anything and create anything means that it's all getting more and more bizarre. More than ever before, it's the people who decide when a character is particularly memorable or a stunt particularly amusing; and more than ever before such things are being spread around the globe. Only time will tell what strange video turns up in your inbox nextâ€Ĥ

Brought to you by Bizarre Petitions a great site dedicated to the unique and bizarre forms of popular internet democracy.

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