Pronunciation Book Countdown Ends With Bizarre Paid Service ‘Bear Stearns Bravo’

Published:10:41 am EDT, September 24, 2013| Updated:2:10 pm EDT, September 24, 2013|
By

laser-jail

The Long and Short of it:

Pronunciation Book YouTube Channel was a "long term art project" building to interactive platform BearStearnsBravo.com
•Twitter Horse_ebooks & Tumblr Let's Talk About Systems part of the same build-up.
BearStearnsBravo.com is a communication platform for possibly an alternate reality game, and to play through an interactive video-based game
•According to the New Yorker, the makers are Jacob Bakkila, creative director at Buzzfeed, and Thomas Bender, ex-vice president of product development at Howcast
•BuzzFeed Editor-in-Chief, Ben Smith, denies foreknowledge according to BuzzFeed

The Pronunciation Book Countdown Ends

Pronunciation Book was a YouTube channel dedicated to showing YouTubers how to pronounce words. Deadmau5, Acacia, and Ulysses are some words these fine folks helped the world know how to say. Then, things got weird. Really weird. The channel began to pronounce the numbers from 77 to 1, except they weren't actually pronouncing them, just rattling off insane poems and various other things to some limited interpretation by users. Still, anticipation grew as we finally reached number one.

Today we reached the end of the countdown. The channel put out a video called "How to Pronounce Horse_ebooks," watch it below.

The Horse e_books Connection

Pronunciation Book and Horse e_books have been linked prior in this New Yorker article. The author claims that both have "hallmarks of automation," which is apparent with the horse e_books twitter, but not with Pronunciation Book in my view (a human reads the words). Another associated social media account is a tumblr called Let's Talk About Systems. In any case, they have a common link and that's Bear Stearns Bravo:

Direct Link to YouTube Video

Bear Stearns Bravo

The new video on Pronunciation Book has similarly linked to BearStearnsBravo.com. Hosted on this site is a dynamic video player that lets you play in a bizarre game where you are either a banker or a regulator. It feels very "Occupy Wall Street" in tone, and is mostly tedious and weird until you realize what it's all building up to: asking you for $7.

Screen shot 2013-09-24 at 10.46.46 AM

Considering the purchase for purely investigative purposes, I looked at their terms of service, they say:

We are Purity of H.E.A.R.T. LLC (“Purity”), and we would like to welcome you to our art project. We want to start by highlighting some important points from our Terms of Service:

In order to provide all of our users with a positive experience, we may limit, modify, or terminate your account for any reason, at any time.
By posting on BravoNET, you will be granting us all rights (copyright/trademark) to the content you provide.
You can easily cancel your account at any time by visiting www.bearstearnsbravo.com/NET/profile and clicking . Sorry, no refunds!

Other features include:

access to a "revolutionary computer network with full-text message boards and personalized interDactive modules. News, sports, stock quotes ... romance?"

Guy on YouTube isn't a fan

sellout

I Paid $7

This is the main interface:

main-interface

You Can Buy an Album

album-you-can-buy

The Interactive Video Story Goes On, You Start in Laser Prison

Screen shot 2013-09-24 at 11.31.57 AM

Alternate Reality Game?

The Horse e_books twitter also posted this tweet:

I tried to call, but there was no answer and the mailbox was full.

There is a Day Long Event in New York

event-details

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