You may have noticed many suspiciously similar posts on various media websites over the past week about Canadian rap superstar Drake demanding royalties from stores selling merchandise using the YOLO catchphrase he helped popularize in the song the Motto.
There are so many reasons why this shouldn't even be a news story, and even more why Drake should resist the temptation to comment further. But before anyone makes the accusation: yes, it's a slow news day. This is where the media is at in 2013, and it sucks for all of us (including Drake himself).
First of all, Drake was probably joking. Maybe he's dumb enough to think he invented it, but that seems unlikely. Apparently some dude named Adam Mesh came up with it in 2004 on a reality show called the Average Joe. That sentence says a lot about how sad it is that we're even thinking about the etymology of "YOLO," let alone who should retain ownership of it.
But, since it's come to this, here's what the originator of YOLO had to say about the acronym's current popularity (via Twitter, of course):
So it's now almost a decade after the term was coined, and people are actually writing serious articles - or at least semi-serious articles - about whether some pop star owns the rights to a slang term that should have been forgotten by now? If you only live once, shouldn't we be spending our time thinking about problems bigger than who owns YOLO?
Even if Drake was trying to argue that these shirts and hats were basically bootleg concert merchandise, shouldn't he be giving some royalties to the Strokes for beating him to the punch with their 2006 single You Only Live Once? Hell, they even had a promotional campaign called "Operation YOLO," just in case you thought we were reaching.
So basically, a pop star made a joke on social media, which "real" media is pretending is an actual legal threat, about a phrase that Zac Efron has tattooed on his hand. Maybe the Mayans were right, and the world already did end.
In related news, a paparazzo was killed Tuesday night trying to take a photo of Justin Bieber's car, which the singer was not even in, and this is the world we live in. Happy New Year!