Well, that was eventful. 2013 will go down in history as one of the most pivotal years in modern times. In years to come, school textbooks – or rather tablets – will contain questions about Edward Snowden, the surveillance state and Miley’s contribution to popular culture. Unless some really fucked up shit happens in 2014, in which case 2013 will become a footnote in history.
Every generation believes it is living through tumultuous times. Ours is no different. We may not fully appreciate it now, but one day we’ll look back on 2013 and, using Google Iris, transmit our thoughts directly into the bio-implants nestling in our grandchildren’s brains, informing them that, yes, we were there when shit went down in 2013. And sure, we missed most of it because we were too busy playing Candy Crush Saga and sexting selfies, but make no mistake: we were there.
2013: Dafuq happened?
Like the rest of you, I have trouble remembering what I did last night, never mind 12 months ago. Thankfully we have the internet and the internet never forgets. The following review will contain multiple instances of:
- My tweets (most of which were written solely as a memory prompting device to aid with this piece)
- Your tweets
- Ed Uncovered references (because if you can’t link to your own articles in a review of the year, when can you?)
- Lulz (because life’s too short for tedious content)
Are you ready to put 2013 to bed and then never speak of it again?
OK, let’s go.
2013 was a bad year for helicopter crashes, starting with the chopper that pranged into a building in Vauxhall, London. In other news, the worst US president since the last US president was inaugurated for a second term of stealing our civil liberties and laying the banhammer on whistleblowers.
Helicopter just hit our building in vauxhall pic.twitter.com/HbktDNkp— Craig Jenner (@craiglet) January 16, 2013
2013 got off to a shocker when, on 11th January, programmer and activist Aaron Swartz took his life, having been hounded to death by vengeful US prosecutors – a theme that was to recur with depressing frequency as the year unfolded.
January highlights on Ed Uncovered included: Nada. That’s right, I wrote zero posts. Way to go, overachiever. In fact between January and May, only two articles were published on the site.
February included the Oscars, or the 85th Academy Awards as pretentious arseholes like to call them. Elsewhere, an obscure digital currency called bitcoin reached the giddy heights of $19. Around this time, I bought my first bitcoin – several hundred in fact – and then sat on them for the rest of the year while I watched the price soar.
Just kidding: I logged on to Silk Road and spent them on drugs like everyone else.
1 Bitcoin = 19.62 USD. What does it say about your economy when imaginary internet money is worth more than your "Real World Money"?— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) February 2, 2013
Also in February came the case of the hatchet-wielding hitchhiker who gave one of the best interviews of all time.
It was later given the autotune treatment, with hilarious results:
February saw the year’s best police chase, when slighted ex-cop Chris Dorner published an epic manifesto before kickstarting an enormous manhunt. It all ended with Dorner being torched by five-oh, neatly preventing the truth from coming out in court.
February was also the month when unflattering photos of Beyonce emerged, while in Britain there was butthurt over horsemeat showing up in Findus lasagne.
"Referee, you're such a cheap lasagne, referee you're a horse's arse." #FindusFootballChants— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) February 8, 2013
"Unfortunately, I will not be alive to see my name cleared. That's what this is about, my name. A man is nothing without his name." #Dorner— Ty Dix (@OhTiggerPlease) February 8, 2013
He's the hero LA deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So we'll hunt him. Because he can take it. Because he's not our hero. #Dorner— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) February 8, 2013
In March, the Harlem Shake became a thing which, like most things, was funny for all of five minutes before mercifully dying. Elsewhere, Lamb of God singer Randy Blythe was acquitted of manslaughter and Hugo Chavez died.
In March, I also started my bitcoin Twitter account, which kicked off with this effort, before going on to document bitcoin’s amazing year:
Everyone's getting bitcoins. pic.twitter.com/LzHsc1zgq9— Bitcoin 101 (@Bitcoin101) March 6, 2013
This also happened:
Non-Existent God Chooses Geriatric Male to Lead Crumbling Institution.— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) March 13, 2013
I'M THA NEW POPE, MY NIGGGAAAAZZZZZZ— POPE FRANCIS (@RealPopeFrancis) March 13, 2013
In March, notorious internet troll Weev aka Rabite was jailed for “hacking” despite having done fuck all wrong. Punitive justice (see also: Manning, Swartz, Barrett Brown) was a dominant theme in 2013.
If something interesting or revolutionary emerges, the U.S. govt. tries to kill it. If something evil or immoral comes up, they cover it up.— Michael Krieger (@LibertyBlitz) March 22, 2013
The dominant story in April came from Boston, when the Tsaernev brothers detonated two pressure cooker bombs before leading police on the biggest manhunt since Chris Dorner. Reddit waded in and tried to dox the bombers, only to fail spectacularly.
During the fallout from the Boston bombing, I tweeted a link to this article in which a former FBI counterterrorism agent claimed the government captures and stores all phone calls and other digital communications. At the time, his claim was given little attention. Looking back now, it was seismic given the kraken that Snowden was set to unleash in June.
Thankfully, April wasn’t all bad news: Thatcher finally died, causing dancing in the streets of Glasgow and delicious butthurt among the political elite. April was also the month when bitcoin surged past $100, which seemed like a huge deal at the time.
NEVAR FORGET. pic.twitter.com/bfaikQnGgW— Bitcoin 101 (@Bitcoin101) April 1, 2013
In May Alex Ferguson – Sir, for those who care about such things – announced his retirement from football and Charles Ramsey became an unlikely hero after rescuing a girl from the clutches of Cleveland kidnapper Ariel Castro.
There's only one man who could possibly fill Sir Alex's shoes. Charles Ramsey.— Back Page Football (@bpfootball) May 8, 2013
Like the hatchet hitchhiker, Ramsey’s epic interview was destined for the remix treatment. The results, as I’m sure we can all agree, were stunning.
May also saw the first 3D printed gun and the trial of Jodi Arias who killed her boyfriend and then spun a web of lies which were just as swiftly picked apart.
If Jodi Arias is guilty of anything, it's having awesome boobs. That and killing her boyfriend.— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) May 8, 2013
Other May highlights included The Onion getting hacked by Syrian Electronic Army and then writing a funny article about it.
Also, this happened:
This is still the greatest thing on the internet today: http://t.co/6TErXxTMG1— Sara Morrison (@SaraMorrison) May 7, 2013
And the singer from As I Lay Dying got arrested for paying an undercover cop to off his wife:
In May, I finally got off my arse and wrote some content for Ed Uncovered. The pick of the bunch was probably So Long and Thanks For the High Quality Entertainment – LulzSec Remembered. In terms of numbers however, May was all about 2013’s second-most popular post of the year with 50,000 reads – 50 Great Names for Penis. Thanks, internet.
In 2013, only one Ed Uncovered article garnered more reads, with 180,000: 50 Great Names for Vagina. Um…thanks internet.
June saw the NBA finals, in which Miami Heat pipped the Spurs in a seven-game thriller and Wendy Davis earning mad props for pulling a 13-hour filibuster to thwart anti-abortion legislation. You go, girl. After three years in detention, Bradley Manning finally went on trial, while journalist Michael Hastings died in suspicious circumstances, leading some to blame the government.
There were only two posts on Ed Uncovered in June – The 10 Best Twitter Accounts of 2013 (in which I welcomed LulzSec’s Jake Davis back to the internet after his enforced hiatus) and We’ve Got Your Back LOL: The Saddest Story Ever Told.
How do you announce the death of a killer without resorting to RIP? Richard Ramirez aka The Night Stalker #DontRIP?— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) June 7, 2013
June was also when I joined Snapchat (whisperednothin, since you asked, but go easy on the dick pics. Bewbs and cats FTW.)
I also tweeted a link to this:
With 2013 being the year of the selfie, it seems relevant to include this:
Cats, snapchat and selfies provided the entertainment, but the real story in June, of course, was the Guardian’s NSA Files, caused by a contractor named Edward Snowden catching a one-way ticket to Hong Kong. The world hasn’t been the same since.
You may not realize it, but the past four days have been some of the most important of your life.— Robin (@caulkthewagon) June 9, 2013
Leak it all: nothing left to lose. You are being monitored anyway; might as well go down in history attempting to change humanity's fate.— Anonymous (@YourAnonNews) June 8, 2013
I told you so— GeorgeOrwell1984 (@GeorgeOrwell198) June 6, 2013
Which do you fear most – the terrorists or the #NSA?— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) June 7, 2013
"All your base are belong to US." #PRISM— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) June 9, 2013
I thought I lost my car keys, but the NSA called and said they were in my other pants.— A Guy Named Kelly (@kellysdf) June 9, 2013
The biggest story in July, for Britclaps at least, was Andy Murray winning Wimbledon. Ah, those feels.
Despite keeping busy on Twitter (mostly concerning the Snowden revelations), July was a quiet month for Ed Uncovered. I did manage one post though, my first ever movie review for The Purge. Ouch.
Edward Snowden has huge fucking balls, btw. And if you're looking for them, I advise you start with Barack Obama's chin.— Andrew Blake (@apblake) July 1, 2013
During July, an almighty game of chicken began, with one nation after another wimping out of offering Edward Snowden asylum, cowed by US threats.
"Siri, give me a list of foreign embassies close to Sheremetyevo Airport."— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) July 2, 2013
In other news, I spent July the same way I’ve spent every month this year:
Today the man with £26 to his name is writing about personal loans. My financial advice? Don't seek financial advice from a skint copywriter— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) July 2, 2013
Is that what it's come to? We've started intercepting presidential planes on the off-chance that some '29 yr old hacker' is on board? #lulz— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) July 2, 2013
As the NSA revelations continued to unfold, cynicism intensified:
America's greatest threat:— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) July 2, 2013
• Steal over 9,000 NSA docs ✔— Ed Uncovered (@whisperednothin) July 3, 2013
• Send media on 15hr flight to Cuba ✔
• Reroute Bolivian president's plane ✔
Edward Snowden: God-tier troll
Seven months down, five very eventful ones to go.
Tomorrow on Ed Uncovered: I’ll complete my review of the year and round things off with a summary of 2013’s best songs (according to me), best Twitter accounts (according to me) and best selfies (according to the internet).
I’ll also list my favourite Ed Uncovered articles of the year (because wallowing in self-indulgence feels great) and talk about some of the exciting shit that’s lined up for 2014 on this site.
See you back here tomorrow. 2013’s not over until I say it’s over.