Hey, Mirror! Did you order brain pizza?!

Hey, Mirror!

Did you order brain pizza?

You must be very confused right now. That’s natural. “Brain pizza? What’s that?!” you’re wondering. I get it. It makes no sense. How about we back up a bit?

On May 18, 2016, you’ve published an article about football goalkeeper Simon Mignolet. You ended that article with a joke about Simon DOING THE SPAGHETTI LEGS. (ALL CAPS – the pinnacle of journalistic writing – are in your original.) Here it is:

Mirror extract

To illustrate the doing of the spaghetti legs, you used a GIF. It was a GIF of Shakin’ Stevens doing the alien dance from his masterpiece, “Merry Christmas Everyone.” To be more specific, you’ve used a particular version of that GIF from an old article of mine. This one:

Shakin Stevens Crazy Dancing Small

Now, I don’t claim any rights to the GIF. All I’ve done was pull that specific segment from his YouTube video and add a minor caption. I’m not even bothered by the fact that you didn’t explicitly state where you got the GIF from. But here’s what kind of sucked: You’ve linked directly to the actual GIF on my site. You didn’t host it on your own servers, instead forcing my blog to load the GIF whenever your visitors wanted to read about Simon’s SPAGHETTI LEGS.

Maybe that’s standard practice in the tabloid industry. I don’t know. Here’s what I do know: By linking directly to the file hosted on my blog, you’ve surrendered all control over what gets shown on your site. Do you see where I’m going with this?

Say I wanted to mess with you and demonstrate why it’s a bad idea to hijack other people’s files. What could I do? You guessed it: brain pizza!

Wait, that still doesn’t explain anything, does it?

What I’m saying is that I could replace the file you’ve linked to with literally anything at all, and it would show up in your article. Anything: fetish porn, an endless loop of Nyan Cat, a video of a guy eating spaghetti on the toilet. (Damn, I should’ve actually gone for that last one.)

Instead, I went for brain pizza.

You’re getting worried now. Is “brain pizza” code for a masterful video trick that hypnotizes your readers into following my blog? Is it an ancient torture technique?

It’s neither. It’s, quite literally, brain pizza. But don’t take my word for it. Take my videos for it instead.

As a reminder, here’s how the last part of your article looked on May 18, before my “brain pizza” initiative:

Now, here’s how that same section looks today, as I write this post:

Enjoy your brain pizza!

Special thanks to Quakin’ Stevens (@QuakyStevens) for spotting the GIF on Mirror‘s website.

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