The rise of Twitter has led to the headline-ification of global knowledge, because no matter how vast or complex an idea is, it must be compressed into a hundred-odd characters to be disseminated over Twitter. Your Twitter feed is probably awash in headlines, with more coming every minute. They spew from official website accounts, or from writers who copy and paste their own stories’ headlines because they’re too lazy to come up with a real tweet:
“I wrote an article! Click on it and love me forever, please!” Pathetic.
Darius Kazemi’s Two Headlines bot creates clickbait-style headlines that are devoid of such desperate self-promotion because they cannot, in fact, be clicked. The bot simply takes two headlines from different stories and smushes them into one. The resulting pastiche of clickbait culture can be banal, but it occasionally comes together in a nice sendup of web publishers’ microblogging come-ons.
(Apparently, Two Headlines has a thing for pelicans just like TV Helper.)
Kazemi has created a number of other Twitter bots, such as Auto Charts, which generates one flowchart and one Venn diagram each day. The Venn diagrams are reliably dull, but the flowcharts sometimes have an amusing passive-aggressive quality:
And Kazemi’s Museum Bot is a pleasant way to infuse some art into your feed. Four times a day, the bot tweets a random image from the Metropolitan Museum Of Art’s archive, accompanied by a brief description:
A.I. researcher Michael Cook appreciated Museum Bot so much that he built Appreciation Bot, which generates vapid praise for each work that Museum Bot tweets. The result is an eerie emulation of those museum patrons who feel the need to say something smart-sounding about everything they see:
Bots are commenting on bots now! It’s Twitter bots all the way down.