Jimmy Kimmel tore into Facebook on Tuesday evening, a day after one of the longest outages in the company’s history brought its suite of apps – Facebook, Instagram, Messenger, WhatsApp – down for six hours. “The only things working yesterday were the American people for the first time in years,” Kimmel joked.
According to the company’s vice-president of engineering and infrastructure, the outage was caused by configuration changes on the backbone routers that coordinate network traffic between data centers. “But that’s not how the Q crowd saw it,” Kimmel said, explaining that “many QAnoners saw it as the start of the blackout, which is a long awaited 10-day nationwide blackout”.
“The timing of the outage couldn’t have been worse – or better? I’m really not sure for Facebook,“ 他继续, as the blackout was followed by a “devastating” congressional hearing on Facebook, in which whistleblower Frances Haugen testified that Facebook systematically promotes harmful content and encourages engagement at all costs. “The choices being made inside of Facebook are disastrous for our children, our public safety, our privacy and for our democracy,“ 她说.
Senators from both parties appeared to agree, comparing the tech company to Big Tobacco. “Democrats and Republicans in the Senate finally found something they could agree on: they both hate Facebook,” Kimmel said. “So maybe it’s not driving us apart.”
On the Late Show, Stephen Colbert explained the cascading effects of the Facebook outage around the globe. In Mexico, politicians were cut off from constituents; in Turkey and Kenya, shopkeepers couldn’t sell their wares. “And here in the United States, your aunt Gloria had to wait six full hours before ‘doing her own research’ about how the vaccines magnetize your blood because Bill Gates wants to use your spine as a compass,” Colbert joked.
And as the company’s stock fell, its CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, lost $6bn in a few hours. “Just 115 more to go, and he’ll have to sell his old stuff on Facebook Marketplace,” Colbert quipped.
The host pivoted to a new tell-all 经过 Stephanie Grisham, a former White House press secretary and Melania Trump’s chief of staff. Grisham famously never held a press conference while in office, “but now she’s spilling all the tea in her new book, I Just Recently Grew a Spine”, Colbert said.
“We sell a lot of books for our guests, but I don’t want to help her sell single copy of her tell-all about the time she told us nothing,“ 他继续, promising to “spoil all the juicy details of I’ll Take Your Money Now”.
The book, actually called I’ll Take Your Questions Now, reveals that Grisham called the South Carolina senator Lindsey Graham “Senator Freeloader” since he used to regularly visit Mar-a-Lago and “stuff his face with free food”.
“For years, people have been asking: why would Lindsey Graham abandon all of his principles and kowtow to a demagogue bent on destroying democracy?” Colbert said. “Turns out, free shrimp.”
And on the Daily Show, Trevor Noah examined the growing trend of religious exemptions to Covid vaccine mandates. “This is where we’re at right now: countless people across America – who have already been vaccinated, 顺便一提, for a million other diseases – are now professing a very, 比方说, convenient religious belief against taking the Covid vaccine,”他解释道.
Noah looked at how religious exemptions went awry: originally intended as a bulwark of religious freedom, it wasn’t until the 20th century that people began to use religious justifications for refusing vaccines. Rules laid out by the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission state that a religious belief does not have to be recognized by an organized religion. It could be new, “original” or “seem illogical or unreasonable to others”.
Basically, “America got into a situation where it was giving exemptions for religious beliefs while being very open-minded about what a religious belief was,” Noah explained. “And look, there are good reasons why you don’t want the government picking apart every religion like it’s a cheating boyfriend on TikTok. You’d rather have the government say ‘veganism is a religion’ than ‘veganism isn’t a religion, and neither is Islam’.”
But “the flip side to being that tolerant is that people can take advantage of the system”.
Thanks to religious exemptions, in recent years “measles became the throwback fad that nobody asked for”, Noah said. “Think about how crazy it is that in America, you can send your kid to school with measles, but if they bring peanut butter with them, then their ass is getting thrown out in the snow.”
And “the same way that Sarah Palin was just a trial run for Donald Trump, the measles anti-vaxxers were just a trial run for Covid,“ 他加了, pointing to Instagram and Facebook groups that coach people on how to obtain the exemptions. And that’s how “a fantastic idea that was once the foundation for a society in which people could pray the way they wished to pray has now warped into an excuse that people can use just to avoid the rules”.