It's official: the internet is off its rocker. Just months after the one-two punch of the blue/gold dress and a llama chase took absurdity to a new level, legions of people (reportedly over 300,000) have tuned in to #DrummondPuddleWatch, a live Periscope stream of a big, pothole-filling puddle in the UK's Newcastle upon Tyne. Why? Part of it was the comedy of watching people try to cross, but it also reflected the herd mentality of social networking. While this was started by a marketing agency, it quickly drew in jokesters, politicians and many others trying to capitalize on the weirdness of the situation -- not to mention everyone wondering what that strange trend was in their Twitter feed.
It's ridiculous, to be sure, but it also reflects both the rapid rise of livestreaming and a culture that thrives so much on social hashtags that they've become a form of slang. Like it or not, these kinds of events may be here to stay as long as it's easy to share a head-scratching link with everyone you know.
[Image credit: Drummond Central, Periscope]