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

“[Anna Victoria is] a good role model to women and is changing the way the world looks at fitness and body image.”—Female, 21, CA

Abercrombie & Fitch is going gender-neutral for their new kids’ clothing line. The “Everybody Collection” features “tops, bottoms, and accessories” for five-14-year-old boys and girls. A&F’s Brand President explained their decision to appeal to The Genreless Generation: "Parents and their kids don’t want to be confined to specific colors and styles, depending on whether shopping for a boy or a girl.'' The line of 25 new styles will be rolling out online and to 70 stores, starting this month. (Today)

Millennials & Gen Z already think the Nintendo Switch is cool, and now the brand is giving them more ways to use it. They’re introducing Nintendo Labo, “cardboard-based, interactive DIY experiences” for the Switch, tapping into the “toys-to-life” trend. The variety kit lets players construct five different “Toy-Con” experiences that include turning the Joy-Con controller into a motorbike handle complete with a throttle that can be twisted to accelerate, and creating a piano that senses which keys are pressed to produce the correct musical note. (Kidscreen)

YouTube is pulling Tide Pod Challenge videos from its platform. Teens started eating Tide pods when memes showcasing their Gusher-like colors went viral. The brand has since issued warnings not to eat the pods, and some stores have even begun locking up the product. YouTube has explained the decision to take down the popular pod-eating videos as a continuation of their policy to “prohibit content that’s intended to encourage dangerous activities that have an inherent risk of physical harm." Some are suggesting that pressure from parent company Procter & Gamble may have also been a factor. (Mashable)

The streaming wars are continuing, but audiences are turning to Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon Prime for very different kinds of content. Hub Entertainment Research found original content is winning users' time on Netflix, while over half watch Hulu for its syndicated collection, and movies are most popular on Amazon Prime. The study also found that most Americans overall spend their entertainment time watching TV (40%), but 18-24-year-olds are most likely to engage with gaming and online video, like YouTube. (Quartz)

Outdoor Voices embraced Millennials’ minimal moment to break onto the athleisure scene. The brandless brand goes for a minimalist aesthetic with pops of color, and sees itself as an anti-Nike of sorts. The founder explains that they’re “a recreational Nike” because “With Nike and so many other brands, it’s really about being an expert, being the best. With OV, it’s about how you stay healthy—and happy.” Whatever they’re doing, it’s working: the company has grown rapidly since it was founded in 2013, climbing a startling 800% in 2016 alone. (Vogue)

“I saw some heartbreaking stories in the internet, and decided to look up some international charities and donate to them.”—Male, 20, WA

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