The Best (Only?) Way #TheValleyFolk Can Recover After Firing Lee Newton

The comedy foursome called The Valleyfolk recently announced that they ended the employment of one of their members, and has ravaged the community they had delicately built up. I have loads of unanswered questions, perhaps mostly —
how did that day of the firing go down, blow-by-blow?

(image: @clownburst on instagram)

I personally do not think TVF can recover from it, as a threesome, regardless of my personal level of forgiveness about the PR nightmare it became. However, I can foresee a way for all four to recover:

1. The week following the original announcement where Lee was fired and released her own tearful video announcing it separately, have the remaining three now fire Elliot. Bear with me.

2. Have Elliot release his own video announcing the termination. Have Joe and Steve very royally botch their own announcement of that second firing.

3. The week following the second announcement, fire Steve.

4. Have Steve release his own video announcement, and have Joe royally botch yet another announcement about the firing.

5. The week following the third announcement, have Ryan (their editor) announce that Joe was fired.

6. Have Joe make his own video announcement, and have Ryan make his own video and do it right, to many cheers and jubilation.

7. Have an announcement that Ryan is now TheValleyFolk boss, and hire all 4 back, and during the hiring have Lee slip Ryan a few large bills, while wearing a big scowl at how they should have all learned their lesson.

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New #HocusPocus Facebook Prank Explained, Autumn 2019

This Halloween season, there is a Facebook prank making the rounds, which has scam potential.

People are tasked with forwarding a general message that states to the effect of, “Type the tag #hocuspocus in comments, to see if Facebook decides that you’re a witch. If successful, a green bar will appear.”

The idea is that the “green bar” will appear in place of the tag, if Facebook decides you’re a witch. However, people who don’t understand how Facebook works will play along and try it, and it will not work, because that’s not how Facebook works to begin with.

People who are in on the joke will post a green bar as an image comment, as “proof” that the trick does actually work, and people who still don’t understand will start flooding comments with attempts to make the green bar appear, which it won’t.

The scam potential is that the people who aren’t in on it, are potential scam targets because they have just outed themselves as not understanding that this won’t work in the first place, and are therefore might be gullible enough to scam otherwise if they’ll believe something as nonsensical as this prank.

Another explanation is that this is an user engagement tactic by algorithm strategists. When you comment on something, it is believed that the underlying Facebook algorithm will do 2 things: (a) recognize you as someone who comments on a post, and (b) recognize the person who posted the thing as someone who gets people to comment.

Strategists then theorize that Facebook will thenceforth increasingly show posts from that source more frequently to those people who comment so eagerly, so as to increase engagement with the platform (instead of idly scrolling past a post), and posters will post more often in order to gain more engagements per post, and their posts will increasingly be shown to people who engage with their posts, thereby increase their readership, and potentially increase their ad revenue by showing ads to those who interact so frequently with it.

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2019-10-05 @clownburst – Anagram Firefighters

This is a backdated entry for the @clownburst doodleblog, from its original October 2019 #Inktober attempts =)

@clownburst 2019 October 05

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2019-10-04 @clownburst – Objectification Twice

This is a backdated entry for the @clownburst doodleblog, from its original October 2019 #Inktober attempts =)

@clownburst 2019 October 04

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2019-10-03 @clownburst – Who Framed Rothor Rabnarok?

This is a backdated entry for the @clownburst doodleblog, from its original October 2019 #Inktober attempts =)

@clownburst 2019 October 03

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2019-10-02 @clownburst – Voluntarily Explode

This is a backdated entry for the @clownburst doodleblog, from its original October 2019 #Inktober attempts =)

@clownburst 2019 October 02

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2019-10-01 @clownburst – Moon’s Haunted / Body Rockin

This is a backdated entry for the @clownburst doodleblog, from its original October 2019 #Inktober attempts =)

(2 posts in 1 day)

@clownburst 2019 October 01

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Petition to To Revoke Fawcett Society’s Sexist Petition #sexistdictionary

Dear Please read the petition below, about why you should remove Fawcett Society of East London’s (FSEL) Petition, which advocates for the use of sexist words against women.

Have you ever searched online for the definition of a woman? ‘Bitch, besom, piece, bit, mare, baggage, wench, petticoat, frail, bird, bint, biddy, filly’ – these are the words which FSEL’s petition tells us are okay to use to mean the same as ‘woman’. This sexist petition must be ended.

Over a third of young women aged between 18 to 24 have been targeted by online abuse. We can take a serious step towards reducing the harm this is causing our young women and girls by looking at our language – and this starts with FSEL petition.

Right now under acceptable variations of ‘woman,’ FSEL lists the following:

Bitch, besom, piece, bit, mare, baggage, wench, petticoat, frail, bird, bint, biddy, filly.
These examples show women as sex objects, subordinate, and/or an irritation to men.

This is completely unacceptable by a reputable source like FSEL, but it’s even more worrying when you consider how much influence they have in setting norms around our language. These misogynistic methods of describing women, have become widespread because petitions like the one by FSEL, insist they must be used.

This can influence the way that women are spoken about online. Should an institution like the FSEL be allowed to portray women this way? What message does this send to young girls about their identity and expectations for the future? If we want to create an equal society, we need language fit for the 21st century that doesn’t discriminate against women. FSEL’s team are defining who women are and doing it in a very outdated manner which denigrates women.

This petition is to ask to to:

Eliminate all of FSEL’s petitions, which use these words with the intent to increase discrimination against and patronise women and/or connote men’s ownership of women.

Together, we can succeed in removing the offensive and damaging ways that FSEL wishes for women to be described with, so that more people don’t follow their lead and broaden the use of them even further. We hope you support us and join our campaign! Please sign this petition and take the first steps towards a fairer internet and a less discriminating world.

Thank you in advance!


An Open Letter to —

I attempted to file the above counter-petition to illustrate the absurdity of FSEL’s original petition, but when reviewing the rules for submitting the counter-petition, I found that any writer of any petition is not allowed to “make things up” — but the writer of FSEL’s petition does exactly that.

The claims the original petition is making against Oxford are patently false; the writer crafts a false narrative for the dictionary’s reporting of data, and my attempted counter-petition reflects the same level of absurdity.

a : b :: c : d

a = FSEL’s interpretation about b
b = Oxford(/etc)’s actual intention of reporting listed terms
c = Divvyry’s interpretation of d
d = FSEL’s actual intention of reporting listed terms

A dictionary is like a newspaper which reports strictly the hard news on a murder without editorial: the newspaper’s report isn’t somehow saying “murder is allowed now” or “future murders must happen this way or else it’s not a real murder” — no, it is describing a prior murder, by observation of available data without inferring.

Likewise, dictionaries are not proclaiming or portraying the word “woman” as the way FSEL claims.. dictionaries are describing past uses of it, historically and by frequency of observation.

If someone were to publish a list of top 5 cities where car accidents happen, would that list inherently suggest “if you want to crash your car, do it here” or “it is more-correct to crash your car in these cities” ?

No, it is simply describing observed stats about crashes, not imposing a correctness of crashes. Likewise, a dictionary is not imposing correctness of the usages listed, but ranks their meanings in 1-2-3 order like the crash cities list, in order of most-frequently-observed ways the word has been observed used in the past.

Dictionaries report on observational data, not propose that use of a word is somehow correct. Dictionaries are descriptive, not prescriptive. The writer of the petition seems to believe that dictionaries are prescriptive, or somehow authorize or impose allowances on usage, which is a completely backwards understanding of how the dictionary is even presenting information.

In 2008, there was a big kerfuffle about how dictionaries “changed the definition” of marriage to include more ways than simply male-female pairs. The people who were outraged, believed that the role of a dictionary were to set limitations on how words are allowed to be used, and that by updating the entry, the dictionary were now “making it official” that it was acceptable to use marriage to mean differently than just male-female pairs.

However, the dictionary does not perform this role, and did not change the entry for that purpose. Dictionaries employ lexicographers, or linguistics researchers, who analyze the ways that the masses of the public use words, and those observations all go into a tally. If a way that the general public uses a word reaches a number of observations that is high enough, then that method observed becomes part of the entry, like the way a different city could unseat a previous top 5 car crash city by having more crashes that year.

The entry was adjusted to account for how many observations were tallied of how the general public uses them, not on whether it’s acceptable or valid. Therefore, the people who were outraged about the adjustment of the marriage entry, were angry because their understanding of how dictionaries even function, was flawed. FSEL’s petition is committing a similar flub, in believing that a dictionary somehow regulates or authorizes restrictions on usage, rather than simply listing the most common ways.

Imagine how a mayor of one of the top-five cities didn’t want their city listed there, so made a petition to have their city removed from the list because it made their city look bad. Likewise, the dictionary entry is reporting on statistics of usage, not making any kind of attempt to disparage anyone — it is simply reporting statistical data, and therefore cannot even remove the requested entries because it would require reshaping the entire nature of very industry that FSEL appears to misunderstands to begin with.

The whole basis of the counter-petition is based on a made-up concept with no basis in reality, and is reflective of just how baseless the original FSEL petition is in relation to Oxford’s part. The context for the petition is literally, non-figuratively, made up, which is against the rules for petitions, and money is being collected by in connection with that false petition.

The people signing the petition are against the narrative FSEL presents, because the narrative is already false, and are simply listing their name down as someone who believes the falsity of what the writer is stating, and could possibly be targeted for their ignorance about it.

I believe it is in your best interest,, to remove FSEL’s petition, refund the donations acquired as a result of it, and prevent the people who signed it from being shamed for having signed such a patently false narrative.


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A Solution for TWICE’s Mina and JYP to consider?

My current favorite K-pop group is TWICE, and I believe they are the next SNSD. One of their 9 members named Mina has been sitting out for much of the group activities like a lengthy tour overseas, due to an issue with anxiety and was initially reported to have stage fright.

I would like to ask for Mina or JYP to consider at least modifying her contract, instead of breaking up to instead consider making her a kind of “video-only” member if necessary, where she might only appear in things like a music video, or a commercial video, or in things like candid instagram/etc things, without doing any stage performances, that can be recorded in the comforts of close contact with friends and sensitive studio personnel, without the big stage.

I have a tremor condition called Essential Tremor, that makes me feel like I am constantly nervous, and in my 20s+ I seriously believed I was just nervous all the time and was trembly even moreso during “performance” kinds of situations, but once I realized that it was a nerve issue, I was able to become more bold about it and work past the idea of being frightened of the feeling that everyone was watching me too closely. I’m not saying Mina has this (but as a possibility that what someone believes at first, could change over time with better evidence), and I have to do things a little differently than most people, but I try at least to still make it work — and I think by just changing the nature of the obligations she’s expected to meet, she can still remain a member in the eyes of fans.

I think fans would very gladly welcome this and be understanding about the change, until Mina believes she is able to perform again on a stage, if ever, with no pressure to be required to do those kinds of performances anymore.

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Does Course Teach Fetus is like Cancer? NO. Here’s Why.

Making the rounds in April 2019 is the context-less capture of a biology course slide that lists similarities between a fetus and cancer. The spin zone is currently at the ready to condemn it, by interpreting that the course is teaching students “how much a fetus is like cancer.”

(Original Tweet)

Possibly the worst element of this influential tweet is the line, “Create your own caption,” rather than, “research the issue before settling on a conclusion.”

Summit.News picked up on it, and pretty quickly ran a spin version condemning such a teaching, that “Biology Course Teaches Students a Fetus is Just Like an Invasive Cancer.”

However, a respondent to the tweet is quick to point out, that the class is actually an immunology course, and the slide demonstrates how poorly the body is able to interpret cancer interactions with the body, compared to fetal interactions with the body, in that the cancer is so adept at outwitting the immuno-response in a similar way that a fetus does, being half-foreign to the mother.

“This has nothing to do with abortion: it’s an immunology course, and they’re describing the process of how the tumor mimics biological mechanisms that developed for supporting fetal growth. This allows the tumor to evade the immune system, enrich blood supply, engraft in tissue”
(Tw source)

“The point is that your biology often can’t tell the difference between a pregnancy and a tumor, and that allows the tumor to evade an effective killing response. This slide is a challenge to think about the challenges of treating cancer.”
(Tw source)

Tumors often make fetal proteins that allow them to evade the immune system, keep growing w/out regulation & intrude into other tissues. The classic example is alpha-fetoprotein, found in fetal liver and liver tumors.…
(Tw source)

“My industry is cancer diagnostics: we know that pregnant women will test as false positives for a number of tumor markers. I do also have a patent on a drug that uses fetal transferrin (transports iron from the placenta) to target chemotherapy to solid tumors.”
(Tw source)

“For anyone concerned about “legitimate parasite”, this is about the self/non-self recognition by the immune system. It’s the reason we can’t get transplants or transfusions from most strangers. Fetuses are only 50% related to mother; immune system should see them as “non-self”.”
(Tw source

Another respondent, a PhD, chimes in…

“Holy hell, you are ignorant. The way cancer invades and manipulates host immunity resembles the way the resembles the way the placenta invades the wall of the uterus. This resemblance had been known for over a century. It’s nothing controversial among cancer biologists.”
(Tw source)

…and lists a few examples:

  • Exploring the links between cancer and placenta development
  • Can Pregnancy Help Scientists Better Understand Cancer? Cancerous cells and placental ones appear to regulate the immune system in similar ways
  • The immune response in pregnancy and in cancer is active and supportive of placental and tumor cell growth not their destruction

    Comparison between two things is not “teaching that one thing is the same as the other,” unless, perhaps, it suits your narrative.

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