Ypulse Essentials: 'Guitar Hero' Unplugged, Pets Get Kids Moving, Cookie Jar Goes Primetime

Guitar HeroFallen (Guitar) Hero (Activision pulls the plug on its “Guitar Hero” franchise, canceling the release of the sixth edition of the game. PSFK, via the Guardian, offers theories for why the billion-dollar franchise failed: selling out and lack of innovation. Also on the chopping block are DJ Hero and True Crime: Hong Kong. So, um, anyone up for a jam session on Rock Band?)  (Mashable) (PSFK) (Ars Technica)

- Kids who have a dog get more exercise than those who don’t. Perhaps the White House’s “Let’s Move” campaign to combat childhood obesity — which is now a year old — should consider building in a pet component) (TruthDive) (Ad Age, reg required)

- Cookie Jar Entertainment (goes primetime, announcing a slate of projects in development for tweens, teens, and young adults) (Hollywood Reporter)

- College students aren’t being challenged academically and are falling behind their peers in other countries. For when Gen Yers graduate and enter the workplace, Diversity Inc. dissolves a few myths about what they want as employees. Hint, yes, money matters!) (Salon)

- Target will have an exclusive (deluxe edition of Lady Gaga’s new album, Born This Way, out May 23. Those who pre-order get an immediate free download of the much anticipated title track) (Billboard)

- Nick Jr’s upcoming show ‘Olive the Ostrich’ (will be illustrated by UK students, thanks to a partnership with The Princes Foundation for Children & the Arts. In other “by kids, for kids” news, USA Today profiles a successful teen author whose self-published books are racing up the charts. Perhaps more publishers should consider crowdsourcing) (Kidscreen)

- Single for Valentine’s Day? (new app, Heartbroker, taps the power of your Facebook friends to find you the perfect match) (Social Times)

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“There are alleys with street art that I've walked out of my way to take pictures of to share on Snapchat/Facebook.”
—Female, 32, IL

Mattel’s new toy franchise Enchantimals is inspired by Instagram and Snapchat filters. The new line of 14 dolls are all half-animal—think the bunny and deer filters—and each “shares a ritual trait with her animal friend.” Their origin and the YouTube series starring the girls are no doubt a part of Mattel’s “five-pillar strategic plan” to be a more digital brand. Appealing to Millennial parents and their kids has been a tough sell for Mattel, but they’re making moves like changing up Barbie’s body type and asking kids to pick the next big toy on TV to keep up with the next generation. (Kidscreen)

Harry Potter fans, raise your butterbeers up, because this franchise and its fandom will never die. Two more books from the Harry Potter universe are hitting shelves this fall—though they aren’t actually written by J.K. Rowling. Harry Potter: A History of Magic and Harry Potter: A Journey Through A History of Magic are instead both written by the British Library, to coincide with an exhibition dedicated to celebrating the twentieth anniversary of the first book. The two new works will include “exclusive manuscripts, sketches and illustrations from the Harry Potter archive,” to delight serious fans of the series. (USA Today, New York Times)

Restaurants are being designed with Instagrammability in mind. From unicorn foods to neon signs and tile floors with hidden messages, restaurateurs aren’t just tolerating Instagrammers, they’re intentionally acting as “Instagram bait” to earn some free press. And it doesn’t end at Instagrammable design touches. Many restaurants stress having perfect lighting, and one even provides “Instagram packs” at customer request, consisting of “a portable LED light, multi-device charger, clip-on wide-angle lens, tripod, and a selfie stick.” (The Verge, Grub Street)

Some student loan debt is getting “wiped away” in court because of missing paperwork. Students defaulting on their private loans are getting taken to court by aggressive creditors, but as it turns out, many don’t have the required documents to make them pay up. National Collegiate is at the center of many of these trials—one lawyer in Iowa represented 30 cases brought on by them, and 27 were dismissed because of “critical omissions or flaws” in the paperwork. Some Millennials prioritizing paying back debt might just catch a lucky break. (New York Times)

Millennials want older generations to know why they stand by political correctness. While some may despair the overly PC state of the world, many young consumers see political correctness as protection from prejudice, and a show of respect. What some may view as an over-sensitivity epidemic, many Millennials see as “being morally minded.” Ypulse’s PC Police trend tackled this topic, and found half of 13-33-year-olds would describe political correctness as treating others with respect, and 66% agree that political correctness is one way to make culture kinder and more inclusive. (Business Insider)

 “I’m too lazy to exercise on purpose. Too much work…If I can't get it with my dog, my job, or my nightlife, it ain't happening.”
—Female, 23, CA

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