A still from Lyndon Johnson’s notorious “Daisy” attack ad, 1964.
You may not have known it, but The Paris Review is nominated for two Webby Awards: one for best cultural blog and one for best “social content and marketing” in arts and culture. The winner of the People’s Voice award is determined by popular vote; the deadline is tomorrow at 11:59 P.M.
We’re honored by the nomination and we hope we can count on your support, but we’re not one to beg for votes—we’ve run a clean, dignified, gentlemanly campaign, free of pandering, slandering, smears, and slurs. But what has that gotten us? Four percent of the popular vote.
Fuck the high road: we’re going negative.
As of this writing, Mental Floss leads the cultural blog category with 66 percent of the vote. They are, on the face of it, an upstanding publication. Their site currently features a video of an amoeba eating human cells alive; ours, by contrast, features a video of our associate editor being smacked in the face with a bag of water.
But who are these people, really? Can you trust a periodical whose title puns on dental floss for your cultural blogging needs? What does it mean to be a Flosser? We asked our friends at Urban Dictionary, and the answer will astonish you:
There you have it. These people are, by their very definition, unreliable. So how did they come by a whopping 66 percent of the vote, you ask? Easy: in flagrant breach of Webby campaign decorum, they ran a constant advertisement on the bottom of their site. The Daily would never stoop to such lows; we never advertise.
But it gets worse—the Flossers’ gall knows no bounds. A very reliable source indicates that they’re gaming the system:
Your choice, then, is clear. To quote another levelheaded campaign ad: these are the stakes! To make a world in which all of God’s children can live, or to go into the dark. We must either love each other, or we must die.
Vote for The Paris Review on April 24. The stakes are too high for you to stay home.
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