The poetry of our leaders

The Ataris

So apparently there’s this new band called The Ataris. I just watched one of their videos online — for a song called “In This Diary.” It’s pretty standard white-boy rawk, notable only for the algorithmic precision with which it cleaves to the middle of the road.

But the question really is, how the hell are they pulling this off? Isn’t Atari still trademarked, and owned by Infogrames now? Either Infogrames’ lawyers haven’t picked on this yet, or maybe they’re actually clueful enough to realize that cultural namechecks are the best marketing they can ask for.

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I'm Clive Thompson, the author of Smarter Than You Think: How Technology is Changing Our Minds for the Better (Penguin Press). You can order the book now at Amazon, Barnes and Noble, Powells, Indiebound, or through your local bookstore! I'm also a contributing writer for the New York Times Magazine and a columnist for Wired magazine. Email is here or ping me via the antiquated form of AOL IM (pomeranian99).

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