JetBlue’s ASMR imagines a fantasy world where air travel isn’t horribly stressful

JetBlue is introducing AirSMR, a nine-minute audio experience that features calming sounds of airport announcements, the light chatter of crowds, snack bags crinkling, and airplanes landing and taking off in the distance. On paper, none of that sounds like it could possibly be anything other than an aural nightmare. But the experience is surprisingly soothing, particularly because it’s a made-up experience set in a fantasy version of JetBlue Terminal 5 at John F. Kennedy International Airport where nobody is having a travel-induced meltdown. The video is available on JetBlue’s YouTube as well as the airline’s inflight meditation sessions from wellness app Inscape.

2020’s new emoji include the transgender flag and more gender-inclusive options

The Unicode Consortium has revealed 117 new emoji that will be rolled out later this year as part of Emoji 13.0. There are 62 new emoji and 55 new gender and skin tone variants of emoji, including more gender-inclusive options. Some of them look really fun — I already can’t wait to troll my friends with the smiling face with a tear, the face with glasses and a mustache, the ninja, and the cockroach.

The Star Wars sequels finally got lightsabers right

The Star Wars saga is full of iconic imagery, characters, weapons, and spaceships, but perhaps none more so than the lightsaber. They’re powerful weapons and tools, and we’re told time and again throughout the films how important they are — each weapon marks the personal style of its Jedi wielder — and how critical it is that each warrior never lose theirs.

Twitter boots Planters’ Baby Nut meme accounts for violating its rules

Twitter is suspending meme accounts from nut company Planters for violating its rules on spam and platform manipulation. In a statement to Insider, a spokesperson for Planters said Twitter found the accounts — known as BabyNutBaby, BabyNutMemes, and BabyNutLOL — did not comply with their policies.

The Far Side is officially online for the first time, with new comics to...

Iconic comic strip The Far Side launched its official website today, which debuted with a selection of classic cartoons, doodles from creator Gary Larson’s sketchbooks, and a letter from the cartoonist himself. Despite the strip’s cultural ubiquity in the form of books, calendars, and posters, the official website marks the first time the comic has ever been authorized to be available online. To mark the 40th anniversary of the strip, which was syndicated from 1980 to 1995, will periodically post new comics from Larson in 2020.

Faze Clan is launching a Quibi reality show to sign its next gaming star

Gaming entertainment and e-sports organization Faze Clan is taking a unique approach to signing who it hopes will become the next big gaming star: a reality show. The Los Angeles-based company has partnered with yet-to-be-released streaming service Quibi to produce Faze Up, a contest that will see six users of the Quibi app compete to be the next signed Faze member. To participate, contestants will need to subscribe to Quibi when it launches in April.

Galavant was the decade’s most underrated show that no one watched

2019 is coming to a close, and with it comes the end of the decade. Prestige TV has never been better. Marvel turned on-screen superheroes into the biggest (and most profitable) trend of the era. Streaming is the new battlefield for viewer eyeballs. To close out the 20-teens, Verge staffers break down their favorite moments, media, and what they believe was the most overlooked in entertainment from the last 10 years.

Robert Pattinson’s Batman revealed in new teaser video

Robert Pattinson is the new Batman, and thanks to a new teaser, we just got a first look at what he looks like in the famous batsuit.

Anime is one of the biggest fronts in the streaming wars

Over the course of the 2010s, streaming services for anime have grown from a niche market to a mainstream one. Companies like Sony, Netflix, Amazon, and AT&T / Warner Brothers are vying for top spots with shows like My Hero Academia and Carole & Tuesday. Investments by these huge corporations have helped produce more anime and made it more widely available outside of Japan. They’ve also made things much more complicated and expensive for consumers.

The decade in babies

This decade, babies took on a new life. Everyone wanted to be a baby, and particularly this year, babies dominated the meme cycle. We’re obsessed with babyfication — turning everything into a baby including ourselves and beloved characters. Unlike infantilization, babyfication suggests corporate strategy, foresight about how turning users or characters into babies will spur brand visibility.

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