Ethan Zuckerman is proposing a new unit to measure attention called the Kardashian. 1 Kardashian equals to the "amount of global attention Kim Kardashian commands across all media over the space of a day."
I choose the Kardashian as a unit both because I like the mitteleuropean feel of the term -- like the Ohm or the Roentgen -- and because Kardashian is an exemplar of attention disconnected from merit, talent or reason. The Kardashian mentions how much attention is paid, not how much attention is deserved, so naming the unit after someone who is famous for being famous seems appropriate. Should the unit be adopted, I would hope that future scholars will calculate Kardashians using whatever public figure is appropriate at the time for being inappropriately famous.
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