Study: Zombie fads peak in unhappy times

A researcher said widespread interest in the world of the undead isn’t just a random fad.

Clemson University English professor Sarah Lauro said people are more interested in zombies when they’re dissatisfied with society as a whole.

Lauro has been studying the concept of the “zombie walk,” a mass gathering of people who dress in tattered clothing and stagger about like zombies. She said such events originated in Canada a decade ago.

Over the next few years, as the U.S. became embroiled in war in Iraq, Lauro said the concept gained popularity in this country and grew. She said that as of last year, zombie walks had been documented in 20 countries. The largest took place in 2010 in New Jersey, with 4,000 participants, according to the Guinness World Records.

Hasselbeck not leaving ‘View’, Walters says

Is Elisabeth Hasselbeck leaving “The View”? Maybe one day, but not today, according to Barbara Walters, who addressed rumors that said Hasselbeck was being fired from the long-running daytime talk show.

On Monday, Walters wasted no time in addressing the story, which broke on Friday, that Hasselbeck’s contract would not be renewed.

“There is a particularly false story getting picked up about Elisabeth’s alleged departure, saying that we don’t approve of her conservative views,” Walters said. “The truth is, we love Elisabeth. I like her personally and she’s just a wonderful person. But beyond that we value and appreciate her point of view. It’s important to us because Elisabeth helps give this show perspective and balance.”

Legal battle rattles ‘Harlem Shake’

Two performers who say their songs have been used in Baauer’s No. 1 hit “Harlem Shake” are seeking compensation because their vocals have been used without permission.

The New York Times reports that songs from Hector Delgado and Jayson Musson are used in “Harlem Shake,” which has become a viral hit, thanks to YouTube videos of people dancing to the song.

Delgado’s “Maldades” and “Miller Time” by Musson’s former rap group, Plastic Little, are said to be sampled in “Harlem Shake.” Mad Decent Records, which put out the single, declined to comment.

Ellen DeGeneres’ daytime show renewed

Fans of Ellen DeGeneres’ daytime talk show have reason to feel reassured.

Show producers and NBC announced Monday that “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” has been renewed through 2017.

Some 189 television stations, including the 10 owned by NBC, have committed to airing it.

In its 10th season, De- Generes’ show has scored some of its best ratings this season. Valari Staab, president of the NBC-owned TV stations, described the show as the “crown jewel” of NBC’s daytime lineup.

Wire reports