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22.04.09

Buy His Lemonade - Finance His Movie

I love original ideas to circumvent the traditional structures and if you do it with style and message I am ALL out behind it.
There is this screenwriter who seems very fed up with Hollywood and "The Industry" and wants to do his own movie. To finance his endeavor he sells self made Lemonade with a great "disclaimer" text on the label that explains what he wants to do and how much he hates corporate Hollywood structure.

THANK YOU FOR INVESTING IN MY MOVIE!
My name is Matthew and I am one of the best screenwriters in Hollywood. Unfortunately, the television networks and movie studios don't know that yet. As it stands, the decision of which films get produced are left in the hands of emotionally-immature, substance-abusing ex-lawyers who live in dread paranoia that everyone in the universe is out to get them. They spend the bulk of their time spying on their fellow executives, composing nasty counter-intelligence rumors and spreading them through their network of FA-BU-LOUS, yet cunning assistants.

Much of the actual work, like "reading" is left to a gaggle of twenty-something interns who are all the product of George W. Bush's "No Child Left Behind" policy. To these bimbos, nothing in the world existed before 1995, and the most reading they've done has been through text messages. They believe that good writing is something that fits into 160 characters, all performed with the thumbs. :)LOL!

Needless to say, I'm making my own damn movie and you just helped! All of the profits from this amazingly refreshing drink are going into my independent film. Why? Because I believe in the spirit of America - CONSUME AND DESTROY! POOR=BAD/RICH=GOOD! WAR IS PEACE! YOU-ESS-AY! YOU-ESS-AY! YEE-HAW!

Any-hoo, if you work in "THE INDUSTRY" as a common below-the-line slob and would like to work on my film for less than you're worth for no other reason but to satisfy my giant ego, send your resume to: malibu.monkey@verizon.net.

If you're a producer with a distribution deal, somewhat sober, and capable of actually reading a screenplay by yourself, shoot an email to me as well. I'll be happy to send a script to you along with your stupid submission release agreement boilerplate wank-rag.

If you are an actor, congratulations on making it this far. It's a lot of words. Who's a good boy? You! And you are very special. Plus, you serve specials at the restaurant. Special food served by special people to special people. Okay, I admit it. I'm just jealous because you are better looking than me and get all the hotties. Girls who go for me are all smart 'n' junk. Plus, they sag. And you're in SAG. Isn't that special?!

Agents, entertainment lawyers, managers and all other Pimps of The Antichrist can do us all a favor by simply killing yourselves. If you can, try to attempt a single moment of original, creative thought by finding an entertaining way to do it. Like performing seppuku with a champagne flute during the lunch rush at The Ivy. Or hang yourself from one of "O's" in the Hollywood sign with a noose made from your Kabbalah strings and rubber cancer-awareness bracelets. Either way, die bloodsucker! Die!

Cheers!

His lemonade is made up of the following:

A REFRESHING BLEND OF WATER, CERTIFIED ORGANIC LIMES, CERTIFIED ORGANIC CANE SUGAR, AND CERTIFIED ORGANIC BASIL.

sounds delicious. You can by a 1-quart bottle for $5 or a 10 bottle crate for $30.
@malibumonkey.

via boingboing.

8.04.09

To the Newspaper Moguls : You Blew It

There is a fantastic rant / fictitious speech from Jeff Jarvis on what the Masters of the News have done wrong in the last 15-20 years and how they completely and utterly destroyed their businesses by failing to see the reality of the internet unfold in front of their eyes and failing to act accordingly. He calls the angry white old man out for their inability to adapt from a content economy to a link economy to the short sighted view that google should pay for aggregated headlines never mentioning that its also google that generates 1/3rd of the traffic to these sites.
If you are even remotely interested why its going downhill so fast and strong for the newspaper business that is the article to read and understand why.
Oh and this is how the article ends:

It's simply too late. The best thing some of you can do is get out of the way and make room for the next generation of net natives who understand this new economy and society and care about news and will reinvent it, building what comes after you from the ground up. There's huge opportunity there, for them.

4.03.09

Why TV lost.

An article starting with the following lines naturally needs to have further scrutiny:

About twenty years ago people noticed computers and TV were on a collision course and started to speculate about what they'd produce when they converged. We now know the answer: computers. It's clear now that even by using the word "convergence" we were giving TV too much credit.

The article goes on to explain in very minute detail why the computers won and TV is a dying medium with absolutely zip zero future. Listing four main reason why it did/does die.

1.) open platform and the speed benefit to get things out there vs. a controlled environment with a hierarchical structure.

2.) Moores Law - Speed of the internet goes exponentially - that allowed for content to be streamed

3.) Piracy… yes piracy is good for spreading stuff and it made it clear that the future of media is free as in beer. There is no business model and there will never be one that competes with free - that does apply to news, books and music. Advertisments are not a business model and I might explain at one point why I think that is.

4.) social application. People are social creatures (not the artificial ones like me but the real humans seem so) and spending time to watch a series of tubes is just not a very social endeavor. Even sitting with friends in the same room watching the tubes is not very social - so people opt for the easy social things - Massive Multiplayer Online games social media sites etc. And that also makes you a broadcaster instead of a consumer and that is a very empowering feeling - one that tv will never ever be capable off for those on the outside of the glass tube.

These are the reasons stated in the article and they are very compelling reasons in its own but on top there are some that made tv irrelavant even faster here are my additional reasons:

5.) Greed. Trying to get the most advertisement dollars possible quite good programs where chopped up in first 30 then 15 then 10 then even 5 minutes parts and filled with horrific bright loud interludes of first 1 then 3 then 5 minute commercial breaks. Watching TV nowadays is like watching a commercial channel with some programming in between.

6.) More Greed. Trying to get the most advertisement dollars you had to get the most viewers and to do that you had to find the lowest common denominator. Which in the mind of programming executives in the "I am important" suits was game shows, reality tv and crappy talk shows, intermingled with some violence and of course meaningless sports. That made TV as a source of information and mind building almost completely irrelevant. Meaning that people started feeling that they lost time even faster.

7.) Failing to see niches and where it saw niches trying to maximize profit at all costs. Thats something the internet can do so much better - filling niches even if there are only 5 people interested. TV operation had become to expensive that filling a niche was just not profitable - something things on the internet do need to worry about too much. But even profitable bigger niches where tried to make into mainstream - which for most niches will never work - alianating the niches participants.

The TV networks already seem, grudgingly, to see where things are going, and have responded by putting their stuff, grudgingly, online. But they're still dragging their heels. They still seem to wish people would watch shows on TV instead, just as newspapers that put their stories online still seem to wish people would wait till the next morning and read them printed on paper. They should both just face the fact that the Internet is the primary medium.

Yes and the boon for humanity will be greater understanding of human on the other side of the planet. Greater information share and a lot less wasted time on things that where pushed upon humanity and made it more stupid in the process.
The thing is the underlying forces are so great, TV has such a huge place in society with about everything "big" connected to it that loosing this medium will also mean social upheaval big time as there is nothing out there anymore controlling the masses and keeping them happy with football or that sunday night talk - and normal people might start engaging with each other - even internationally - can you imagine what would happen? Mutual understanding and knowledge sharing - the horror!

Read the whole article over at paulgraham.com

15.02.09

My current push-media fix

I have a disdain for oldschool massmedia as most people probably know by know but modern massmedia has its merits if it adheres to serve the citizens instead of the interests of business or politics. So I have a couple of massmedia fixes for myself that I think are standing out tall and proud from the rest - that is of course personal taste.

Talk Radio:
BBC World Service - hands down. The quality of the shows the indepth information they cram into 30 minute shows the quality of guests and talkers has no match anywhere else. They try to be balanced as hell - even taking a lot of flack (recently for "siding" with Palestinians). Their economy outlook report is just telling how it is ("nobody has a clue" and "sorry is not the word bakers mean when they say it"). I LOVE the presenters all around - they have wit, speak gorgeous english and are speaking fast enough for anyone with attention deficits. The combiniation of culture, technology, politics, trivia is amazing - personally they could leave out the sports sections but its really like only shorts about sports anyway. The "from the ground" reports are greatly produced - making as much from the medium radio that you can. Listening to them is just making the stories come alive in your imagination. They integrate listeners feedback constantly replying to listener comments or just letting listener comments stand on its own (which I think is great to avoid flame wars).
The best show is "The Forum" every sunday morning. Its a roundtable discussion that gets together three people (+ the host) from a very wide array of professional fields and the intellectual discussion you can hear there are of a different kind - eye opening, amusing, high educational in value and mostly useful for the advancement and understanding of mankind.

Music Radio:
Well I listen only to webradio when it comes to blast my ears with music as I do not posses a lot of music on my local harddrives (number of songs residing locally can be counted on two hands) and since I kind of need music to get going when I am working its almost constantly on. Five stations that have chrystalized over the years as worthy of constant listening:
DubLab - if you want to hear crazy strange whicked experimental jazzy handmade urban suburban african mexican or whatever you can think of kind of music in a low bpm range with a lot of dub underneath this is the station to listen to - but be warned it sometimes gets very headfucked and there could be a rotation of shows a bit more often as you do sense the repeats quite frequently.
NinjaCuts - Ninja Tunes makes radio its almost always possible to listen to them if you like electronic music. Sometimes its really great and you wanna get up and dance - which is rather silly on your own in the office but energy it gives you nonetheless.
RadioGlitch - a bit more on the "commercial" side of electronic music its when you really need some danceble music that is four to the floor with dubby parts broken beats and lots of glitchy bitchies.
DubTerrain.net - Dubstep, D&B and Dub on the cutting edge - a bit heavy sometimes with a lot of hard D&B but good if you are in a down mood and still need to get stuff done - better then coffee. ;)

TV:
I am trying to not pollute my visual senses too much as I found it hinders my imagination and creativity but I do like very well made documentaries. The best over all documentary presentation I have found so far must be
PBS Frontline: The 60 minute shows are completely viewable in nice 12 minute chunks on their gorgeous (so a bit unnecessarily flash heavy) website. They include "learn more see more get more" links throughout the shows inside the video player to click on. For example to see a full interview if it interests you and not just the excerpt you see in the film you can just click on a link that appears when the interview is shown. Also it includes viewers comments when there is a hot topic beeing talked about. The shows are enourmously well researched and always sport this threaded story that just doesn´t let you go. The whole endeavor is people sponsored - the camera work is mostly amazing. Only quivvle I have had with it was the Hugo Chavez documentary which I thought was a tiny bit biased but the rest I saw is pretty balanced. There will be one called "Inside the Meltdown" on Feb. 17th that I really look forward :)

The only other visual tubes programming I probably don´t have to mention but I do it anyway as there are still people who have not heard about the amazing
TED talks: Taped at the TED conference this highly intellectual tribe of people try to show off positive technology and ideas and thoughts that can transform the world. The talks are short and of the highest intellectual order - you might have heard about Bill Gates releasing Mosquitos - that was a TED talk. There are many more similarely shocking and eye opening (the much cited other one is the woman who is a brain specialist had a stroke - lost half her brain temporarily and speaks about her research on herself by bringing a real brain with the spinal cord attached to the stage). No matter what topic you are into you will find something of importance to you there I can guarantee that - oh and the talks are highly addictive - lots of people have seen them all - a couple of month constant viewing that is. You will be a smarter person afterwards - guaranteed.


Now these are pretty much my main massmedia consumption patterns. I would love to hear if you have others additional ones that just stand out from the pack as something special and noteworthy. I would be delighted if you leave a comment.

18.01.09

4 chords make up all of Pop Music Successes?

I am a pure consumer of music - I don´t care who did what - I can´t remember band names singers, composers, djs - music I either like or I don´t - period. So naturally I have no underlying understanding of notations chords or whatnot - but this little videosong is very eye-opening as it puts pretty much all iconic pop songs played on radio up and down in heavy rotation all in one - what you would think would end up in a horrible mess of music jumbo mambo instead sounds like one song. Apparently they all have the same chord underneath which makes them pretty much all the same song. So if you want to make a Nr. 1 hit use these chords and be a star :) I must say that this puts an interesting twist on copyright right there. Why are the record labels not suing the shit out of each other - they are clearly copying them self.

and read the comments on YouTube - people are adding to the list of songs that could go into this - it seems endless...

Found on the (horribly) pink ShinyShiny blog.

1.12.08

Why the media around the world loves bailouts

You know you can sense a kind of cheering in the media for more and bigger bailouts and rarely do you hear voices of concern in the deceasing matter. If you look deep and have read my previous article on why the media might need its own bailout its quite clear that they might not need their own bailout - a bailout of other failing industries is enough to sustain this failing industry as well. Here is a chart to think about if you want to trust the mass media with any information on any bailout - and let me say the US is just an example the list is pretty much the same (just switch us car makers and banks with local car makers and banks). So here is the list of the top advertisers of the american mass media market. There should be a light going on in your head - if not you might be living in a cave.

2007 Advertising Expenditures By Bailout Targets
CompanyAmount (000's)
General Motors3,010
Ford2,525
Toyota1,758
Chrysler1,739
Bank of America1,491
Nissan Motor1,407
Honda1,326
Citigroup1,135
JPMorgan Chase1,074
American Express1,050
Capital One757
Hyundai651
Visa581
Allstate537
Fidelity 499
MasterCard489
Progressive460
Washington Mutual445
State Farm Mutual431
Wells Fargo356
Total:21,751

Hmm 21 billion of advertisment revenues - the top 20 - and all thats in it is cars and banks. Empty words like "too big to fail" and "5 million jobs" and "end of world" take on a whole new meaning if you look at it from the perspective of the media industry. They might be just talking about them self instead of the banks and the cars.

From the excellent media death watch blog newscorpse.

24.11.08

TV in the US on the brink of extinction?

News could not be better... Heck yes economy down the drain and all but as long as TV is wiped out in the process I am all for the deepest recession of all time. The time waster that makes couch potatoes and controls mind to the right like no other is having some serious serious troubles in the USofA. Why? The biggest advertisers of TV is the - wait for it - car industry. And what did we learn last week? The car industry all over the world is in deep shit - the US one in the deepest brown sauce. Now the easiest possible way to save money in a car company without stopping to produce cars is advertisement and thats what they do - cut almost all advertisement as soon as the contracts run out. Now spiral back that means the already not so very profitable TV industry is loosing its biggest money giver (isn´t it interesting that cars, oil and tv with a bit of banking sprinkled in form such a homogenous group?). Readers of this blog know that that the TV industry had prior to all the economic troubles already some heavy rough years where they had to outsource some less profitable time slots to cheapos resulting in worse programming and lower ratings - you know death spiral.

Now, get ready for an even more radical change on Saturday mornings: As Fox parts ways with 4Kids (the deal expires at the end of the year), the network is adopting an unprecedented model for the daypart: Infomercials.
In a network first, Fox has given two of its four Saturday morning hours back to affiliates. But the other two, cleared on 95% of its stations, will now be sold to advertisers -- who will use the time to sell products.

Thats right to stop bleeding they are giving their precious programming hours away to air more infomercials - you know to sell useless shit to stay at home moms that have no money need to get credit for buying the stuff can´t pay it back get insolvent and take the banks with them - oh the irony is breathtaking.

It gets better:

Meanwhile, should one of the nets decide their hefty broadcast infrastructure no longer makes sense, they could go for the most drastic idea of all, one that then-NBC honcho Bob Wright first dangled more than 10 years ago: Dump the network model entirely and turn your broadcast network into a cable one.

Dump TV and put it into the bin - thats my solution - would cost everyone the least stress and would open the world up to some undetered free information flow to everyone and would wake the sleep at home people up and see things more clearly. Its bound to happen anyway. If you have a cable solution only then the result will be that cable is too expensive in times of peril and people rather choose internet then cable TV in the end - so subscription will be soo low that there still wouldn´t be quality programming so people have no reason to subscribe - TV is so far down the death spiral its over before you know it - count my words.

The info comes from the (for me) highly entertaining article called "Needed: Network bailout?" on Variety.com.
Yes they actually think you can save the Titanic.

20.11.08

Spot.Us Community Funded Local Reporting launches

Spot.us the website that pioneers a new model of investigative journalism has officially launched. I reported about it a while back because I think this has the potential of becoming huge. Basically its fusing blogging with traditional media with fundraising and creating a local media platform that has funded reporters from communities researching stories that are close to home and report on stories that are also important to themself while in then they get a voice by having their stories spread for free around the web but also on dead trees (now take a deep breath I know it was a long sentence). Since they are funded they have the luxury to go deeper then just copying something from big newspapers or linking to the neighbors blog.
I said already that I really dig that idea and I think it has a huge potential for success. I wish Davin Cohn - the founder of the project - the best of luck with his endeavor.

Here is a video explaining how it all works:


Spot.Us - Community Funded Reporting Intro from Digidave on Vimeo.

12.11.08

Iraq War Ends! Sadly its just a spoof

12times-480.jpgCommuters in New York got a nice surprise this morning when they got handed a free edition of the New York Times with the main headline "Iraw War Ends!". The paper had all section of the normal New York times but was filled with the wet dreams of leftist environmentalist progressives. The back cover even had an advertisement for KBR (thats the "company" doing "reconstruction" in Iraq). The paper was normally printed so it actually had the look and feel of the original - but it wasn´t. Its probably the most elaborate hoax since faking the french president to Sarah Palin - and maybe even bigger - it has at least as much impact because it actually describes in a nonfictional fiction way on what the world would look like with sane leaders. I really really dig that fictionreality mixing (something we here at the prototypen are planning for next year - mixing reality with fiction and making it a political statement). This actually educates people while entertains people while it makes all its own promotion on itself. Pure geniuous. Word on the street is that it was a job of The Yes Man. Here is also a video:


New York Times Special Edition Video News Release - Nov. 12, 2008 from H Schweppes on Vimeo.

Music Industry asks for $25 Billion Bailout - Socialism hits the Music Industry?

In a stunning dumb move the Music Industry of the USA has asked the US government for a $25 billion bailout to pay for the multimillion dollar stars and music managers who did not understand the change needed in their business model. This is the most ridiculous proposal ever. I would not be surprised if it actually goes through. If it happens to go through I am hoping that all music that the labels own becomes public domain - I mean in the end the public paid for it and attach a "lead parachute" by making clear that no manager gets any benefits and has to pay double the taxes of everyone else until the end of their day.

From the American Association of independent music:
The U.S. spends around $695 billion a year on defense so it would be a bargain to support the American music industry and stabilize National and global security. Now, more than ever, America needs the recording industry’s creative musical genius to infect the world with the sound and soul of America.

Right because music helps to spread your bullshit patriotism and american propaganda win wars and make the world a saver place - so some stars and clueless managers need some more millions to free the world from independent music.

via Kraftfuttermischwerk

PS: By the way I am not 100% sure if the original article was not meant as tongue in cheek considering the source is an independent music platform and the proposal is so extremely over top that if it would be genuine it would set the record for most propaganda laden press piece of modern history.

2.11.08

ReConstitution - Live Remixing of Presidential Debates

I must have missed this but these guys are doing a cool thing. They take video audio and text streems of the presidential debates while they are happening and remixing them live on stage in a "news commentator" like setting - only that they are just talking with pictures. Without music its bound to be not so energetic as the ReVolution08 movie from Coldcut a couple of days ago - but their approach is at least as relevant. Its like a live audiovisual commentary that puts the spotlight of the event to subtleties that you wouldn´t see if you just saw the TV version. And what I also love about them is that they stress the live character of their event not even attempting to make a recorded version available - some things are just better live I guess.

Here is their trailer:


ReConstitution 2008 - Live Presidential Debates Remix by Sosolimited from Sosolimited on Vimeo.

Internet No 2 news source

1017-1.gifA PEW research comes to the conclusion that internet viewership is up 23% from 4 years ago when people look for news about the current US election. TV has declined 4% and all other media basically staying flat. That makes Internet the overall No2 resource and if the trend hold up it takes only about another 4 years to dethrone TV. Oh happy days. If Obama manages to win on tuesday the internet will have paid a big role in that.

1.11.08

Why I blog

Saturday is a good day to reflect on life (for me somehow always better then sundays where I just want to be outside and clear my mind). So stumbling over an actual insightful article that is more philosophical then political, is somehow timeless is a great joy. So today I did stumble over such an article by the "Daily Dish" blogger of The Atlantic Andrew Sullivan. The article is called "Why I blog" and is very very long but I would suggest that every blogger wades through it. I always enjoy Andrews witty insightfull political commentary and this article outside the political scope is no different. Its a nice description of what blogs are where they came from and how they tick. The money quote on page one:

"For bloggers, the deadline is always now. Blogging is therefore to writing what extreme sports are to athletics: more free-form, more accident-prone, less formal, more alive. It is, in many ways, writing out loud."

Blogging as an accident prone fun alive extreme sport. Its is intimate but public exposing yourself to the outside world by informing the outside world of your thinking and becoming a puzzle piece of the world wide narrative.
Sullivan also offers an insight why blogging is such a boon to the writing crowd compared to constant delays reediting and rewriting in more traditional medias. This makes it possible to be more fearless (coming back to the extreme sports category) when publishing more directly speaking ones mind.

You have to express yourself now, while your emotions roil, while your temper flares, while your humor lasts. You can try to hide yourself from real scrutiny, and the exposure it demands, but it’s hard. And that’s what makes blogging as a form stand out: it is rich in personality.

A very recommended read.

So why do I blog? Mainly because I believe in the world narrative being written by bloggers and everyone should be part of it - its the personal angle the one where politics, the environment and the arts matter (to me). Secondly to give out some of what I learned online offline through trial and error through accidents through investigative passion that sometimes creeps up on me. Thirdly to put spotlight on local events because I blog in english but live in Germany I have a different audience then MoGreens for example that just resonates to different parts of the world who might be interested what happens in this small community over here.
Most of all blogging is a lot of fun and full of surprises its somehow makes you feel like you are a human beeing and not just an ant in a system. If you don´t blog you should try it out one day its liberating.

If all this sounds postmodern, that’s because it is. And blogging suffers from the same flaws as postmodernism: a failure to provide stable truth or a permanent perspective.

31.10.08

Dear Old Media....

Your business model is about to fail in an epic drama because over the last 10-20 years you have not invested into new ideas, you have not looked beyond your faith of the economy flushing you with cash, you have not even invested in good content. You got into a spiral of self fulfilling prophecy - ever worst content to please the ever shrinking lowest common denominator. And worse of all you have tried to buy out ideas from outside your scope, tried to humiliate those that don´t work with you, tried to stop any content business model that isn´t formed around your believe of distribution of media power. You close your eyes when its aparent that copying things from one media to the other has never worked and will never work as most different kind of medias have a completely different underlaying social behaviour, modelled on that a completely different user interface and so dear old media fusing your failed business model with a social model that is not even build to be a business model and try first and foremost to generate ad revenues by connecting people and giving them an very expensive chat window on their tv screen which they interface - wait for it - with an iphone or similar network enabled device - this dear old media is so falling flat on its face (not even to mention that a remote control is also not the best input tool to engage in socialising activity of any extended sort). Please get it and stop your desperate attempts to save your failed business by trying to mimic real innovation that is about the people first and foremost and money only as an enabler. Try to see were your old business model can help future generation, heck become an archive and let people search in the past - and even charge some administrative fees for it or do live broadcasts or even just let people rent your facilities to make people powered media - but please see the light and see that people want real interaction, people want to publish want to speak their own voice and the TV or a dead tree newpaper is not the medium to deliver that - it was never designed to do that and to make it work is like trying to transform a school bus into a first class ultrasonic airplane that can carry 2000 people at once.

A response to the aptly titled article "TV+Social Network=?" on the wall stree journal.

2.09.08

Free Press in America

Amy Goodman is the host for Democracy Now! - a free independent Internet, Radio and TV news organization (12 years in existence). At the day she wanted to cover the protest against the Republican convention she and some senior producers were arrested by police with freaking baseball bats. Goodman one of the producers also arrested has been officially charged with obstruction of a legal process and interference with a “peace officer" (no joke!) - or officer "I bring peace with my baseball bat". (Democracy Now Article about the arrest here.)
America is officially a police state. There is no free press and the country is not free anymore - forget about a free election as well. Hail Reichspresident McCain and his creationist running mate cheerleader Palin.

31.08.08

spot.us - community funded reporting

Here is a business idea that I like and think that could catch on (if there is a working micro payment system worked out in our lifetime that is). Its community funded reporting. You think you are a journalist? You believe in free reporting? You still need money for your reporting and survival? Well this place is about to help you. It sports a wiki where you can make a pitch about a story you want to report on. You say how much it costs to produce the story. Concerned citizens and locals interested in the story donate to your pitch - if the reserve you have set is reached you get the money and do the piece. Then the final story is send to spot.us where its fact checked and spellchecked and made into a neat package that then gets distributed (for free I guess) to local media outlets. This makes so much sense its great. Yet I did say that a real micropayment system needs to be worked out for this - as I might not want to spend a lot of money on each story but small change here and there to get the truth out. Maybe you could buy a $10 credit or the like and then spend that on whatever story. Anyway I will be watching that project it might just get huge with just one hit piece of reporting where the traditional media has failed (and that won´t be very hard to achieve). It also solves the "pennyless blogger sweatshop problem"... Only thing that might get in the way is a site setting the topic not to "environmental political news" but to "more gossip from plastic stars" - which would ultimately suck in all the money.

spot.us

2.08.08

License für Internet TV in Germany - the dead is trying to kill the interwebs

It had to come at one point. When a huge company, media or anything else in a capitalistic system is dying it tries to bring down anything around it. So the TV lobby in germany is pushing hard for an extension to the "rundfunkstaatsvertrag" that would make any and all internet tv that has some kind of programming structure in it (read a website that just hosts programms on a webpage under the same name with a "similar kind of program") and more then a lousy 500 viewer (thats nothing really everyone can get 500 viewers in less then two month constant running anything) a pain in the butt to run because you would be considered a tv station with all its limitations and scrunity by regulators. Not that I see any way they would be able to enforce that but if you happen to have a hit and it generates publicity they are going to get you. It can´t be that you could dethrone mighty old dying TV you know then the ruling class would not have any leverage on the population and no way to brainwash them.
The freedom of the internet gets lots and lots of hits lately and if the people who love the webs don´t watch out we will have an overregulated castrated censored commercial push medium in the not so distant future - or some "rogue" state gets an atomic bomb and build huge server farms and then hosts all those freedom loving peoples web endeavors.

More about the Rundfunkstaatsvertrag @ Heise Online.

10.07.08

Last•FM paying royalties to Indy Musicians

In another upset to the big players Last•FM has decided to pay royalties to small music labels and individual musicians who upload music to their their service. At the moment 70.000 of such artists are signed up on Last•FM and have uploaded 450.000 tracks in total.
If you are signed with a record label you get nothing directly (just the 1% your record label might get you) but if you are unsigned independend and not a member of the RIAA, GEMA or similar rip off institution then you get you share from Last•FM directly without any penalty (read you get more money if you are not signed up with the devils).
Now I have used Last•FM a bit in the past but have not yet forked over the 5 Dollar for their extended service because its owned by CBS - a media giant in itself and I just won´t support these ever, but quite generally this is a way in the very right direction and just another nail into the Music Industry Mafias coffin.

From Techcrunch.com

9.07.08

American Mass Media Bankrupt?

Politico writes that the mass news media are reconsidering their commitment of covering the democratic national convention in depth because the decision of BObama to hold his acceptance speech in front of voters instead of in front of party elites and the MSM adds a lot of cost to their coverage and apparently they are all short on cash.
If it is really true that the MSM (massmedia) is really THAT short on cash to bring in two or three more camera crews for one evening (plus maybe one transmission live editing car) - they must be absolutely bleeding. If it is really that bad then see the full collapse of the mass news media in the next 2 years. Even just talking about such a lousy sum (for the mass media that is) should make all mass media stocks go down to hell.
I have one suggestion for the mass media: look how cheap bloggers, podcasters and vloggers can produce news that are more balanced mostly better researched and surely much closer to the actual happening then your class A high definition camera teams that need to stay at an expensive hotel and only ask stupid questions. You don´t need camera cranes, airships and super highdef mega recording gear to cover a political speech - in the end its just about the content of the speech and NOT how great your footage looks like. Something that makes bloggers, podcasters and vloggers successful in their own right.

There is of course also the possibility that the MSM does not want to report so much in depth about the democratic convention as this would mean they might actually educate viewers about issues rather then making them more dumb.

28.04.08

Here Comes Everybody: The Power of Organizing Without Organizations

Clay Shirky just said that the death of Soap Operas/Sitcoms on TV is freeing up 2.000 wikipedia worth of contribution time... Soap Operas are of course just as on thing of the epic battle between the distraction media vs. the contribution media. I still found the original comment (boingboing.net) a bit "lush" so I looked at a talk from him and its a very refreshing organized view on things that I deep down understand but couldn´t communicate. Here are some Quotes from the talk:

- "Social Lag"
- "Social Capability has not transformed society at anything like the rate as other applications have launched "
- "Groups are natively conservative"

- "It is curiously the moment when Technology becomes boring that the social effects become interesting"

The 4 step ladder of which a participatory internet society is going through...
"1. Sharing, 2.Conversation, 3.Collaboration, 4.Collective Action"

We seems to be past 1. 2. and 3. and apparently approaching number 4 fast. Now with 2.000 wikipedias worth of time freed up the possibilities of collective action that transforms us into a new kind of culture - a free open source culture perhaps - are imminent? This guy thinks so. Listen to his catchy fast worded speech on the Harvard - Berkman Center for Internet and Society.

17.04.08

The total collapse of the traditional media in the USA

I was wanting to wait for our podcast tomorrow to speak about the issue of the total collapse of the soundbite media but since it makes such a huge splash today I will comment already and make it more clear tomorrow.
Yesterday was another "primary debate" in the US - meaning the two remaining candidates from the democratic party Barrack Obama and Hillarry Clinton sparred it out with words on TV. It was the 20th debate of the election season (no I am not kidding). I have been following closely whats going on because I was just waiting for this moment to happen (all along and I expected it much earlier). Normally the primary season should be over by now but since Hillary Clinton is loosing by all means even so she was the clear front runner before this all started it gets dragged out and Clinton is throwing the mud around ( I have been watching closely and as said before I could care less who is winning - so Obama is probably the better choice for the whole world in the end seeing the real Clinton) Anyway not get dragged into the issue of who will win the nomination - that is not the reason for this blog post - the real reason is that in the debate last night the ABC news network overdid what turns people off network television and the big media in general - it tried hard to produce sound bites and controversy over absolutely nothing but left out real politics in the meantime - the debate was light entertainment for the right wing. This wouldn´t be interesting in itself but the media has overplayed the 10 second soundbite that say nothing about a candidate for the last weeks or so so to keep the race close and higher their ratings - and quite obviously it has been to much even for the average tv watching couch potato. The outrage is HUGE and comes from all sides - left wing right wing bloggers and even some big media journalist. The talk of the day is that people feel personally offended for beeing treated like they are totally dumb.

Thats the framing. With big media in general decline this event could end the pop culture of the 90s and early 2000s and take down all of big media in one go. Its a significant event that when a huge electorate swallows the blue pill in one evening. There is huge consensus that this was a historical milestone for alternative media to rise to the top for people powered media for media fact checking and for big media to loose its grip on the big swath of the people who have been left behind the information age - at least in the US of A (hey and since trends do come over here to europe with a 5 year delay expect the same thing to happen here too very soon :) I am eager to see how this plays out in the coming days but I think a lot of media moguls will scratch their heads at why their ratings are dropping into the bottomless hell of nonexistence. I truly believe there is nothing these tv network newspaper networks and radio networks can do to turn this around now because they would have to change their whole corporate culture and even if they would start doing that now it would just seem false for those that have been lied to those that have feel they lost half their lifes by being dumbed with britney spears and co. This is a true revolution unfolding in front of us and it will be like the banking crisis - hidden for a couple more month/years but then the graveness of the situation will come to light and people powered media - as chaotic as it is today - will be the only information tool left. The only true Free Press and it balances itself....

1.04.08

The Myth of the Media Myth

This is one of the best articles about the role of the media in society that I have read in a long long time. Its meta topic is about games and the perception of videogamers in society but it digs very very deep into why there is a dissatisfaction and outright fear persistent in 30+ year old people concerning videogames and it comes to a very very intelligent conclusion.


"The media perpetuates it, but it doesn't cause it. ... The media just picks up on it and presents the same message with as much negativity as it can possibly find, because we are a negative-driven culture. We don't do things because they are right thing to do; we do things because we don't want the wrong things to happen." I think on that a long time.

Me too think on that long time...

Read the whole article at the escapist magazin

2.03.08

R.I.P. Old Media...

Call me obsessive but I believed all along that the internet has the chance to not only dethrone old media across the line but also kill it into a status of "fan ware" - like 8mm films or Betamax tapes. That is ALL old media as we used to know it merely 10 years ago in its full health - TV, dead tree publications, linear over the air radio. Well we have officially started to reach stage one - the dethroning. With 48% of americans - a study says - say there primary source for news is the web trailed by TVs 38%. Satisfaction with journalism has increased with the use of the net (who would have thought) and 67% say traditional journalism is out of touch. Feel that slight breeze of cold air coming through the room? Its Mr. Deaths breath to come after big old media.
I am surprised how fast its all happening. Fasten your seatbelt as society will brace for some turbulence adjusting to a new world order.

13.02.08

Net advertisement is ineffective across the board - who would have thought

I never understood how google is making these shitloads of money because I can not believe that "click throughs" most of them accidental give advertisers any kind of leg up in the market. It seems my suspicion is right as a recent article on slashdot notes:

"A recent study finds that 6% of Web users generate 50% of the click-throughs. Worse news for advertisers: these clickers are not representative of the population as a whole, most have incomes under $40K, and their clicks are not related to any offline buying. (They are mostly males between 25 and 44 years of age.) The number of clicks on an ad campaign is also not strongly correlated with brand awareness for the ads' subject, according to the study. This is bad news for ad-supported Web sites and businesses, as rates should drop if the Net economy begins to take these findings seriously."

JNo brand awareness - no translation to actually go out and by a thing neither online nor offline - so what the heck is the use of online ads - especially unbranded adwords in general? But my suspicion goes even further - advertising as a whole in its current form of super branding and subtle force buying has seen the end of life on any media. People are over saturated by XX thousand brands competing for their brain cells and actually people find they might wanna use their braincells for something else. I would say as with the decline of TV we will also see a decline of advertisements in the coming years - now the question begs -> no brands -> no advertisements -> no free money -> no free culture? or is it free culture -> no brands -> no money -> no advertisement?


8.02.08

You know TV is dead …

… when the American population is not being influenced to vote for a certain person from a TV ad but instead from blogs and mouth to mouth propaganda.
Kos from Dailykos makes the case that TV spending is way down for the pre-election in America - in his opinion just a matter of different circumstances compared to last year - yet if you read the comments you might come to the conclusion that this might not be the case and perhaps - yes TV is not as influential and important as it used to be and that the money - which is much more then in the three previous primary election combined - is spend elsewhere.

24.01.08

Will the Web Replace TV? - /. asks

A recent entry on slashdot has grabbed my attention - its asking if the Web will replace TV in the very near future. Providing some links to articles in mainstream media about "TV on the Net". I briefly been flying over the articles and the mainstream media still seems to think that "TV on the Net" has to be like "TV on TV" - which I wholeheartly disagree with. Joost, Hulubulu are not going to garner enough attention to make them the new internet "killer app" - youTube is because its unregulated commercial free (the videos are) user submitted content - nobody needs filters in the days of the internet - any kind of filter you put in between the audience and the publisher will cost you viewers, market share and cause your media publishing company an early death or a life on the net fringes.
Generally it can be observed that the theme is grabbing a lot of attention.

Give the net more bandwidth (for individual users too) and a proper streaming protocol (and multicast) and TV begone.

21.01.08

Tradtional Media is still clueless

I just read a german study about media use in the "future" (PDF! warning). Its done by the "Gesellschaft für Innovative Marktforschung" (Society for Innovate Marketing Research) and boy are they a clueless bunch of wannabees.

take the following statement:

Vor allem das Internet wird hier eine entscheidende Rolle spielen und die etablierten (Massen- )Medien vor große Herausforderungen stellen. Die Nutzungsdichte innerhalb der nachwachsenden Generationen zeigt, dass sich das Internet zukünftig als ein neuer „Big Player“ im Konzert der wichtigsten Medien einreihen wird.

(It translates along the lines of "The internet will be playing an important part in the future and will pose a threat to established media.)

Well let me break it to you the internet IS a major player in the content market. Traditional media has been delagated to place 2, 3 and 4 in the target group of 14-19 year olds already and traditional media is already a dying species. We are in 2008 not in 2005 anymore. I can go on with more quotes out of this redicioulus paper that go along the same line - basically the people who wrote it (one studied politics the other socio-economy) should look for a different job because they are writing about a media as if it where at a standstill the last three years, but the media itself is living in the future constantly. The study reads like someone has not got that the whole "web2.0" thing is already a bursting bubble that was so much hype and from the beginning a mere marketing scheme for things already in place since internet 1.0.

one more quote:
Medien müssen sich daher zum einen als Plattformen verstehen, die den Nutzern bei Bedarf die Möglichkeit einer aktiven Mitgestaltung in der Auswahl der Inhalte bzw. des Programmflows bietet.

(Media must see itself as a platform that gives their users - if required - the possibility of an active co-designing of the content selection or the programm flow)

LOL... People ARE CREATING THEIR OWN MEDIA. If TV stations rush to the net now and give the user the possibility - if required - of co-designing their content selection or program flow - all TV stations will die an even faster death then they will eventually do anyway. People grab stuff from everywhere there is no brand loyalty anymore - its only the content that counts and that will be more and more created by the people who watch it them self. No wonder with these kind of studies that the traditional media is so far behind in their thinking. And just creating a "community" will backfire shorter or later because everyone is building "artificial" communities - at one point there are so many online communities as there are websites and then NONE of these communities will provide any value to anyone because people will just spend their time on their own community - which is rooted in real life.

The fragmentation of media is already taking its toll - the only ones who take a toll is the traditional media. Just ask your kid from next block how much tv he/she/it watches, how much its is on the interweb and how much of the time it watches tv its also on the intertube at the same time (having the tv as an ambient noise generator) and how much of this tv watching is really about 1 or 2 shows that would also easely be watched on the iTubes as soon as this is a viable option and how much less tv its gonna watch then and that it won´t care where the content is coming from in the first place and the trillions of places it could come from and the nonexisting filter and the paradise and the user generated content that draws them away from one place. ANALYST DUDES: The future is much more complex then just extrapolating media habits of yesterday to tommorrow - look around you stop reading the net and interview your "target" group. The future for big media is bleak, its scattered already all across the floor - we are aiming at a free media culture and you aint be able to do shit about it just speeding it up with "predictions" like this. (they are even getting paid -by big media - to do this - hilarious). Oh and read "settop boxes" in there somewhere - now let see if anyone ever makes a settop box that actually sells (appleTV I am looking at you) - because if not then its clear that the TV as the central hub of media is also loosing its status symbol and maybe even "the big screen" as well. It will only be there for immersive games and the rest is done on the portable screen (or the contact lenses). "onDemand" - is two words that already lost there meaning - on the interwebs ALL content is on demand or it does not exist.

The paper ends with the following statement:

Angesichts des hohen Stellenwerts von Fernsehen und Radio werden diese beiden Medien mit Sicherheit auch in der kommenden Dekaden eine herausragende Bedeutung besitzen. Daneben wird sich in Zukunft immer stärker das Internet etablieren.

(In the light of the high significance of TV and radio those two medias will with certainty have an outstanding importance in the coming decades . In the future the internet will establish itself alongside.

bold predictions guys n gals... now isn´t the internet already an established media - or did I miss something the last 10 years? and how much importance is certainty in the coming freaking DECADES?

I could go on and dissect every single sentence in this "buzzword complient" "ANALysis" but I leave the exercise for the dear reader if they dare....

12.12.07

TV ratings plunge in the US- advertisers want their money back

Bad news for TV as we know it doesn´t stop coming in. Today NBC is reporting that it has to pay back advertisers because their ratings have been horrendously bad. NBC is not the only one, ABC CBS and and even Murdochs FOX is among the casualties of a rating drop not ever seen. Normally the TV networks are giving out "free slots" to advertisers but there are no free slots as they have been already distributed by the first round of onslaught. Needless to say that fewer rating means fewer advertiser means fewer dollars means less quality production means lay offs means an endless downward spiral until TV is at a point were you me and the dog can compete with the production quality (and of course every freelance journalist can compete with the content).
The networks blame the plunge on "new rating measures" (reported here before) but it probably just shows a more real picture - the couch potatoes get less - the mouse potatoes become more.

http://real-us.news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20071211/tv_nm/nbc_dc

10.12.07

Google to offer "print magazine from blogs" service?

An intriguing article on TechChrunch tries to make sense of a patent granted to google.

Consumers may purchase a variety of publications in various forms, e.g., print form (e.g., newspapers, magazines, books, etc.), electronic form (e.g., electronic newspapers, electronic books (”e-Books”), electronic magazines, etc.), etc. The publishers define the content of such publications, and advertisers define which advertisements (ads) may be seen in the publications. Since consumers have no control over publication content or advertisements, they may purchase a publication that contains at least some content and advertisements that may be of no interest to them.

Techcrunch thinks that this could lead to completely customized magazines shipped to ones house. You could for example make some search terms taxonomies and your customized super special magazine would be printed on demand (once a month or every day or whatever) and then delivered instead of your regular newspaper which wastes about 90% of its paper on stuff that is not interesting to you.

Then again do we real need to chop down more trees, shred them to pieces, dip them in highly toxic paints and put them on landfills after 10 minutes of usage? Also the whole "customize you content" approach is flawed in my opinion, because you never stumble onto something that is outside your scope of normal reading topic and accidentally could change you live.

Yet it is cool in the regard as it would take away power from the big publishers - which I find always worth a mind experiment.

5.12.07

Dylan vs. Time Magazin

Normally I am not posting YouTube links (flash alarm) but this is to great to pass up. How spot on can you be? Bob Dylan (no not the programming language - the singer) tells a Time Magazine reporter why big media stinks and he couldn´t be more spot on.

"They got too much to loose by printing the truth"


4.12.07

Some Videobloggers getting paid

In my end of TV series I always say that online video will be huge, and I can just see the eyes rolling thinking "oh you ain´t be making money with this". It seems so that some peeps are starting to make big bucks and some are earning a living already (i mean yeah already is a matter of point of view but you get the point). Top of the crop is not rocketboom who seems to have fallen of the cliff after amanda condon left the show but AskANinja. I don´t personally like ask a ninja for its too lightharted and not content deep but people like it and as the transition from tv continues first will be the lighthearted shows then more deep and specific (as can be already observed by podcast trending away from too light to at least knee deep).

Read the article about payrise in the videoblogger world over at (fittingly) TV Week.

3.12.07

Is TV already spinning in its grave?

I have long been blogging about the death of TV and I stopped that lately because in my view TV is already dead as a fish. You might look at me in disbelieve pointing to the million of couch potatoes who can´t stop to be brainwashed. Yet I tell ya the end of TV is coming near you next year and the final nail in the coffin no later then 2012. Except for older people who just can not use the intertubes everyone else will have moved online for their moving image fix at a time of their choosing for a topic they are choosing. I think the decline of the TV industry will accelerate with a rapid pace that has not been seen every before because even small declines mean way less money in the TV industry which then mean way less appealing programming (which is already at a point where 95% is unwatchable to people with a tiny bit of intelligence left) which leads to fewer viewers and an accelerating downward spiral. Big production studies understand nothing about how the interwebs work - or at least not enough to save their brands over to the new medium, which is ruled by semi-pros, amateurs, small scale companies embracing open and free - something a multimilliondollarcompany can never get their head around - even if they are the once who could finance a couple of years of open and free. Now there is no bussiness model out there except advertising that works for media companies and advertising on the web is either hold by google - which is still mico payment (something big companies are not overly interested in) - or nothing (because you loose users in droves once you start making extensive use of "tradtitional" advertising on your webshows). Then there is the whole remix thing together with creative commons - something larger companies will fight nail and tooth before they understand that they have to embrace it to be successful on the anarchyweb. The whole bussiness model of media distribution has to be rethought with bandwidth prices dropping bottom floor everyone can publish everything already without having to worry to pay more then their phone bill in the end of the month. At the moment some "pay as you go" models to download "popular" shows are working because the branding effect of TV is still huge but as time goes by and people are moving away from the boob tube the branding effect will wane and people are less inclined to watch this or the other show just because everyone else is literally forced to watch it because thats the only thing on at a specific time and all your friends and coworkers are talking about it.
At that point all media producers are created equal and then its about content and great stories and great concepts and other intriguing stuff that has been amiss in the media industry in the last decade.
The bussiness model will have to be rethought and a whole industry needs to become more artistic (as in starving artistic) brand building for companies will get harder (because 99% of the population will see a value in adblockers at one point and then there is no revenue for anyone) Some might donate a bit but overall there is a point in the tunnel where things change radically in my view - then again I could be wrong, right?


The New York Times writes about it too...

Cinema Decline in Germany continuing

In my diploma thesis I wrote that cinemas are seeing there end of live as a mainstream mass media and especially the multiplexes will close down in masses in the coming years. I backed this up with the continuing downwards trend of movie goers. Well this theory is coming more and more reality with germany seeing another 6.4% decline in moviegoers - thats what the head of the biggest film distribution company - constantin - in germany says. That means that since around 2000 when the decline started there are only 50% moviegoers left (between 5% and 12% decline every year) in germany - this must be absolutely devastating to an industry that had just before been in an an absolute boom cycle and just build movie theaters that could house 300% more people.
The Constantin chef says the reason is too many movies, but as always with these people living in bubbles the real reasons are much deeper. Bad movies, too expensive ticket prices (1 euro dvd rental - or even "free" from the intertubes compared to 12 euros for a cinema ticket), cheap home electronics, computer games. The last one is coming in from under the radar and its not that its "computer games" per se but the need for a complete rethought about what a story is and how we percieve visual media. PEOPLE ARE BORED with any nine act structure no matter how smart it tries to web itself into a nonlinear storyline. People are smart they predict much more then in the past and there is nothing worse then watching a movie where you roughly have an idea how its gonna end - BORING. Computer games are - by nature - needing a different approach and somehow seem to be more innovative on the story front (not all I might say - Crysis is a bad example of how to do a story line for a game imnsho).
A whole new cinematic approach that combines the couch potato aspects with the nonlinear novel story aspects packaging it all into a new media form that could then use up the empty cinema spaces would be great - yet I guess it has to get more ugly for big production houses to accept this matter of fact.

Source:
Heise News (german)
In a personal note - out of 50 movies I watched this year I did not find a single one above the line worth mentioning. They where all rubbish and I already set my standards especially low already. The only few that I thought to be entertaining and I actually enjoyed watching had been two english comedies with good actors.
Other then that there had been some that had good effects, some that had awesome camera work - epic pictures (yawn), almost none that any kind of noteworthy story and a lot that I fell asleep during watching them (and I am a media junky and I never used to fall asleep during movies - I love to be entertained if the entertaining is at least a little bit grabbing).

21.11.07

360 degree camera and projection system....

olympus_360.jpgOlympus is kind of ahead of the whole immersion curve it seems by surprising the world with the first HD (as in 1080iiiii (why fucking interlace?)) camera AND projection system that records and projects a 360 degree round view. No word on pricing or availability yet but I do have a feeling that soon the editors of this world sit in odd round rooms - obviously before hollywood will get wind of this the vjs are on the forefront and have done various diy solutions making projection domes and stuff for - like - ever. Anyway immersion is good - a standard would be even better, yet I don´t think this will be a hit with the couch potato who's average room probably does not fit a 360 degree projection surface. And 1080iiii is a bit rough if you have to stretch it out by so much, but its progress after all and big companies pushing the boundaries can not be such a bad thing in the end - which is sadly far far away for the poor video souls trying to get a true immersive environment.


Via TechOn


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2.11.07

jamendo - music how it should be

: free easy fast open :

I am not really the music freak - in fact I have only ONE Mp3 on my computer (yes one). Searching for music never appealed to me (lost time) and I am not so much into big bands to justify any "stealing" or such. Mostly I hear some webradio here and there or just enjoy the silence.
But occasionally I have been craving for that special music - that music that would make a bad mood better or bring back old memories or would set me up for a specific task. So where would you go for that?
I stumbled across last.fm. There you can specify what you wanna listen to and they make a playlist for you. Sadly the "smart" playlist thing that I was really interested is only available to subscribers who pay money and there desktop app sucks bad enough (crashes, kernel panic and stuff) to make me not endorse this.
Today I looked for Creative Commons Punk Music and through some obscure spanish websites I ended up on jamendo. So the name sounds like a bad dot com memory (wasn´t there something called jumundo ones?) the website ROCKS. So the design is not the most beautiful of all it does actually work and is quite simple enough. EVERY music on there is under Creative Commons. You can listen to tracks and albums, put together playlists without downloading a single song (thats cutting it for me!) or download whole albums through bittorrent (direct download would be better but at least ALL the albums I downloaded worked out of the box). It has the whole w3b.two.point.x integration with making friends publish you playlist to blogs (thats actually quite cool!) clouds of tags and all teh other stuff that you would expect in a community site - at least all this is very unobtrusive and the main thing of listening to music in the first place is middlecenter so you are not getting too distracted. Also you do not have to create an account to use the service! Also there seems to be LOT of music on there! Not just one genre but everything you can imagine.
I think this will be a site you will hear much more about in the short future - best one so far in my opinion from a non musiclover perspective that is.

http://www.jamendo.com/

1.11.07

JOOST vs. miro -> Streaming vs. RSS

There has been a lengthy "commercial" entry at boingboing about InternetTV called "miro kicks JOOSTs butt". Miro is the newly named "democracy player" (or interfaced video RSS bittorrent client) implying that miro will dethrone JOOST and is generally just soo much better. While I am all for open everything I can not follow this thought as I see one major shortcoming with miro.

no real streaming.

But until we get to that lets have a first short look at where TV on the internet is now and where it has come from.

I have been looking for a viable video publishing solution on the internets since I have been using the internets. I soon figured to give a real competition to TV over the air you have to have a medium that is similarly spontaneous instant, easy, unobtrusive and "lazy". With the advent of blogging and RSS feeds the "easy" part and partially the "lazy" part could be solved but what was always missing i this approach is the instant gratification of switching on a TV and get some programming - I did say instant right?
As some RSS feeds are near instant I still believe that "realtime" TV programming has its merrit and that can not be accomplished with RSS also the buffer time between programming can get long with slower connections (read majority of world population has less then 1Mbit connections) and interrupt from this seamless TV experience most people are used to.

Now you can do streaming since about 100 million internet years but for the small "videopodcast" producer this is a horrendous expensive proposition as it either means setting up shop with your own server and paying not only housing rental but also the bandwidth cost of a streaming solution where each and every person uses bandwidth for each and every time they are watching your feed or getting into a contract with one of the few good streaming video providers - you figure out their prices by you own.

That leaves as the only alternative distributed streaming - an area I have been tracking for a few years and have gotten frustrated with to say the least. There was peercast - a solution that was about to take off when it lost steam with the only supported formats beeing ogg and wmv. No mpg4 support and no easy install process and the two remaining formats beeing rather "shaky" to say the least disqualified this product. I wrote about Peercast before.

The other solution that was beeing trumpeted was the bittorrent streaming protocol - since bittorrent got bought up by the MPAA associates talk about this has completely died down - and if you are a conspiracy theorist you might want to believe that the bittorrent streaming protocol was the big fish in the bundle - even to just never have it released onto the market. In the end an open source open internet uncontrollable P2P streaming protocol would skew the power-pyramid in this world heavily toward the base. Now Bittorrent.Inc is asking for producers of TV programs to apply to get on their IPTV service when it launches "later this year". I get into that below.

This year came Project Venice - now better known as JOOST and I got a very early invite to be part of their beta testing. I was cheering at first because what I saw was the day of light of bringing true internet TV to the masses - I was blinded. Yes even early incarnations of JOOST worked flawelessly streaming distributed. The technology seemed great. Wikipedia writes the following:

The current version of the software is based on XULRunner and the audio management re-uses the ZAP Media Kit. The peer to peer layer comes from the Joltid company, which also provided the peer to peer layer of Skype. The video playback utilizes the CoreCodec, CoreAVC H.264 video decoder.

XULRunner - great open source .
ZAP Media Kit - great also open source


but what the freaking dang is JoltID? Well its the company that generates great code to license (skype protocol anyone) it to big companies - and this is where it all broke down for me. Because with a "commercial" layer underneath this whole thing had a big weak point - it can be controlled by an outside party - and as we see in the current incarnation it is FULLY controlled by an outside party. What do I mean? Well there is someone controlling the content - a censor so to say - that means this technology - while great – is in no good spirit and even so you can "apply" to become a joost channel the normal democratic internet rules where EVERYONE is a publisher does not apply. As a business model this is understandable but it has serious consequences when you look at it from the eyes of an open internet without barriers. Oh and to make matters worse they DRMed the shit out of those TV shows and track what you watch - great just what the big content producers want - but neither the free internet loving peeps nor the small independent programmers - and why do I need InternetTV if its the same old junk that I can watch over their airwaves?

The same problem applies to the forthcoming Bittorrent streaming protocol - as this company is ruled bye the MPAA now you will see only "quality" DRMed closed "old school" TV programming.


All this is different with miro of course as it is based on open protocols (as open as the normal bittorrent protocol is now I guess) and everyone can publish anything - hence the name "demcracy player". Its basically a fancy video RSS reader with bittorrent functionality - while this is great to save bandwidth for small publishers - it also tends that small publishers have not that much bandwidth need to absolutely dive into it too deeply and its NOT STREAMING heck its not even "play as you download" also it leaves to much "work" to the lazy couch potatos wanting an easy "just watch a sitcom/nature/techshow now" button.
Streaming is absolutely necessary to make internetTV have any chance fighting the 98% traditional TV penetration in this society. People want it ->all<- ->instant<- ->now<- even me and I am a computer geek who hasn´t watched tv for the last eight years. I never leave my computer on over night except if I have to render something for work so the "download over night" approach doesnt appeal to me - also if I see something interesting I want to know about it right then - the next day I probably have been moving on and lost interest or don´t have the time or whatever.

So I would say neither program wins - the one is closed and defies the spirit of the open internet - the other one is just not close enough to TV to gain the ciritical mass needed to make it succesfull on a grand scale.

What is really needed - and in the next 6 month that is otherwise JOOST will have an impenetrable market power - is the following:

1.) Fully open P2P decentralized (no tracker no server please) streaming protocol.
2.) a way to integrate the programming into webpages
3.) a way to "download while you watch" so you can later give movies to friends or watch it on an iPod or whatever
4.) Make an RSS API that lets other users (not only the publisher) make Programming feeds. This got to be the best Web2.100 application I can think of! Have people produce content and other people comb through the content to make nice TVstreams about certain topics - maybe even with custom "TV presenters" in between.
5.) make it encrypted from the beginning. If you are truly a "democracy" player you need to let people broadcast encrypted secure untraceable programming from their home.
5.) wrap it all into an open source nicely code documented framework that can easely be wrapped into gui applications - do not try to make the gui application yourself as it likely sucks if you are a team of programmers without interface building knowledge and just "get a friend graphic designer" on board to to make that eyecandy flashy everything moves interface for you.

Until that has happened we - the people on the indy publisher side and on the consumer/watcher side - will have to do with classic RSS streams and try to ignore the easiness and instantaneousness (that is really a word :) of JOOST for the moment.

Good thing JOOST is having such a hungry sucking bigbangeyecandyflashy obstrusive interface that it probably fail just because of that ;) oh and it has commercials which are starting to be annoying as well.


So to get back to the boingboing article - I do not like the boingboing stuff for praising applications because they "sit in the board of advisers". They should have a critical view on everything and miro is not set to deliver any kind of InternetTV revolution. Both solutions are in no way satisfying - sorry.

more links:

P2P Streaming overview (tribler.org)
An Experimental Analysis of Joost Peer-to-Peer VoD Service (uni-goettingen.de)
Get democracy - ahm - miro player (getmiro.com).

22.07.07

Death to TV part (I forgot): Murdoch to pump money into exclusive online "IPTV" shows

So I am sure that the recent move of Mr. Murdoch will not prove to actually liberate people in any way the idea to pump in 400.000 USD for an "episode based" show to air on myspace is tingling my fingers. With hunred million users forming a uniform target group (read "blind trend(money) followers") Mr Murdoch has a clear possibility to get the biggest audience any episode based moving picture premiere ever had right on on the first hit. Now while I think the piece might only have an entertainment value and will lack true pioneering spirit it does turn a lot of attention to "IPTV" or the internet as a moving picture distribution chanel to the former "couch potatoes" which in turn means the hundred million myspace users are watching at least one episode based entertainment piece less on TV which means less revenue less viewership and an acceleration of the decline of the "hipness" of watching TV in one of TVs most revnue generating target groups. Its endlessly satisfying seeing the gatekeepers slowly drown without any backup plan of their own grasping on which is a heavily declining media death spiral.
Now people could say "Mr Murdoch is hardly doing good to the internet" but I say first he probably has interest himself to see TV drown and in the end as of this year there is no way to play the soley gatekeeper of content on the internet (so netneutrality and greedy governments could change that over the long run) so any attention to motion picture content on the net is good for everyone producing motion pictures on the net. Since the "murdoch approach" is probably some classic TV like programming people will be bored with that but then they are on the net and have a good chance to stumble over more novel humanity advancing art-knowledge- entertainment (one can hope right?).

Overall not the worst of all developments. Further information about this in this article on newsblaze.com.


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17.04.07

How Controllable is the Mass? Hitler and Göring give a clear answer

Too lazy to translate this but its so absolutely fittingly obvious when you compare these words from 80 and 60 years ago with what is happening today.

First from Hitler himself:

"Die Aufnahmefähigkeit der großen Masse ist nur sehr beschränkt,
das Verständnis klein, dafür jede Vergesslichkeit groß. Aus
diesen Tatsachen heraus hat sich jede wirkungsvolle Propaganda
auf nur sehr wenige Punkte zu beschränken und diese
schlagwortartig so lange zu verwerten, bis auch bestimmt der
letzte unter einem solchen Worte das Gewollte sich vorzustellen
vermag."

Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, 6. Kapitel


and from a psychologist observing the Nürnberg trials writing down the account of Göring (these where done in public with lot of publicity so people in the future would learn):

"Nun, natürlich, das Volk will keinen Krieg", sagte Göring
achselzuckend. "Warum sollte irgendein armer Landarbeiter im
Krieg sein Leben aufs Spiel setzen wollen, wenn das Beste ist,
was er dabei herausholen kann, dass er mit heilen Knochen
zurückkommt. Natürlich, das einfache Volk will keinen Krieg;
weder in Russland, noch in England, noch in Amerika, und ebenso
wenig in Deutschland. Das ist klar. Aber schließlich sind es die
Führer eines Landes, die die Politik bestimmen, und es ist immer
leicht, das Volk zum Mitmachen zu bringen, ob es sich nun um
eine Demokratie, eine faschistische Diktatur, um ein Parlament
oder eine kommunistische Diktatur handelt. Das Volk kann mit
oder ohne Stimmrecht immer dazu gebracht werden, den Befehlen
der Führer zu folgen. Das ist ganz einfach. Man braucht nichts
zu tun, als dem Volk zu sagen, es würde angegriffen, und den
Pazifisten ihren Mangel an Patriotismus vorzuwerfen und zu
behaupten, sie brächten das Land in Gefahr. Diese Methode
funktioniert in jedem Land."
(S. 270)

Aus: Nürnberger Tagebuch von G.M. Gilbert. Ehemaliger
Gerichts-Psychologe beim Nürnberger Prozess gegen die
Hauptkriegsverbrecher. Aus dem Amerikanischen übertragen von
Margaret Carroux - Fischer: Frankfurt a.M., 1962

all found in a heise forum posting. fom Werner Zuther.

15.04.07

São Paulo goes advertising free

saopaulobillboardli beration.jpgby popular demand. With a vote of 45:1 the São Paulo city government has approved a law that makes ALL and EVERY advertisement in São Paulo illigal - the one dissenting voice is affiliated with an advertising agency. Shop owners are only allowed a very small sign on their shops — thats it. No bus advertising, no billboards, no neon signs, no outdoor led screens, no flyers, no posters — nothing. Its so freaking cool, south/middle america more and more develops into a test ground for a live after kapitalism. I really wonder what the impact is of this. How much big vs. local corporation are loosing in sales (my bet is that multinational mega corps are the ones loosing the most) how much sales in general are affected at all (my guess is not at all). And the affect on the suicide rate in the city (drastic reduction?).
This also seems like the ideal playground for street artists who could help make the city a peacefull calm beautiful inspiring place without the kapitalistic evil lurking on every step you take.

Flickr photoset and original story.

2.04.07

DRM is declared DEAD

Today in London Steve Jobs the Apple Distortion Field Generator and EMI Music (the record label that has the Beatles, Chemical Brothers and some other few) declared Digital Rights Management dead. EMI states that 84% of consumers would prefer digital music playing devices free of DRM to be able to freely copy and use their music.
You will read that in about trazillion blogs in 20 minutes here are the slides:

EMI declares DRM dead slides (pdf)

What this means is crystal clear. A big record studio admits that the whole DRM thing was wrong is wrong and will be wrong now and always. Consumer rejoice, EMI will have a short "record" sales as all those that support this decision will show their support through a purchase (well maybe not) and the other biggies will follow, then next is the movie industry and in three years everything is fully completely DRM free. Right? RIGHT!

Generally this shows how powerful consumers are once they break free of the TV and advertising brainwash the company soak them in all their life. This has extremely far reaching consequences inside and outside all of society. Generally I support this with all my heart - not that I will start buying music again, but maybe this will also spur better music in the future. The next fight copyright as it is at the moment in general? Or a complete reshape of the media industry top to bottom left to right?
With DRM out of the way it definitely frees up some thoughts.

UPDATE: Well its all out there now, the news and all. The sour grape is thats its also a move to price the songs higher - which is bullshit. The move is clever price it higher now, phase out the cheap ones with DRM and leave the new price in. 1,30 USD is pretty huge. Anyway. The best blurb from Steve out of the news conference has to be the following which I definately would like execs of other companies to read and also Apple itself to read - because sometimes they don´t follow that idea themselves:

Q: And the second part of my question is: What do you think this will have an impact on the iPod-iTunes relationship in terms of now being able to buy your music on any player and not just on iPod?
A: Well again, you've been able to play all sorts of music on iPod forever. iPods have played MP3s forever. So the only music that has been in question is music you buy off the iTunes store. Now again, you can burn a CD and read that CD back in and it takes off the DRM. So you could then play it on anything else. We compete based on having what we we think is the best music store and based on what we think is having the best music players. And if customers agree with us, we are going to do well. If they don't, well we're going to get a message back that we have to work harder.

23.06.06

Steward, DailyKos, TruthOut.Org: The right wing media onslaught

Isn´t it funny that just a week ago I wrote a couple of entries about the organisational skills of the right wing in the US and it just unfolds in front of everyone eyes and yet nobody seems to sense a connection? Now that Karl Rove is back in bussiness the media onslaught against dissenting voices is in full swing, it seems coordinated and timed.
First was truthout.org - a webblog/aggregator that is trying to promote an honest peacefull world and other liberal thoughts. About a month ago they posted a story that Karl Rove would be indicted and offered eyewitness accounts to some meetings between Firtzgerald and Roves lawyers - they were the only ones reporting this - no mainstream media outlet picked the story up. Interestingly now that it is out that Rove won´t be indicted its the first outlet that gets a massive mainstream media treating about spreading only fud and that the name is the tip of hypocrism - interestingly there is no proof that the original claim truthout made was really false - in the contrary there are "sealed" court orders with "secret names" on them dating to that date that truthout made the story public. It seems a distraction story away from Rove as a person and retailored to be an attack on a media outlet that dared to mess with Rove. While noone really knows what is true or not, truthout has been forthcoming with every single bit they know and admit themself that there are uncertain facts in the original reporting that they regret having written - yet the mainstream media is not stopping to smear them in every way possible - convicting the writer to be a drug addict and other lame ass assults.
Well if that story was strange in timing and execution just three days afterwards the DailyKos - the biggest most influential independent Democrat blog gets accused that its founder is taking bribes from Democratic contenders and then uses his influence on other bloggers to write positively about those people. Well everyone reading DailyKos occasionally knows that this blog is made by its users, there is an open thread hanging there all day which has most prominence and each and every attempt to change public reception by Kos staff would be sensed by the highly knowledgable people on the board and would be challanged - yet alone that any independant blogger would take the word of one blog and reprocess it without further thinking - let alone a whole army of bloggers. This attack is step two and hit mainstream press right away as well - consider that most major news from the terrorist battlefront that are showing a negative picture of the war either never make it or only when such a huge amount of public pressure is growing - now the little democratic youth blog is making headlines on day one. This time the attack is not only targeted at the blog in general. By trying to make it look like that this blog is corrupt, the picture painted is that nobody can trust nobody and so the power of a global blogosphere could be deminished when mistrust is ruling - divide and conquer.
Now this could still all be and would not pose a problem (other then these are the two MOST influential alternative "lefti" blogs in the US at the moment with some real power to change political talk) and everyone would say that the two incidents are related call me a conspiracy theorist today then there was a third attack - the attack is on Comedy Centrals John Steward. The article cites a study that asked college student what they thought about politics and those who watch the left leaning comedy central that hosts commedy stars such as "Mr. Press Dinner" Colbert and Steward. Those who watch Commedy Central apparently don´t like politics and refrain from voting more often then those who do not watch this show. Yes of course it is totally unlogical that those drawn towards Commedy that makes fun of the shadowy political elite would also like how politics beeing played out. And of course its only the commedians fault that those young dissenting people opose politics in general. Two way attack again - one personal towards the left commedians - one that makes those who dissaprove politics look bad. Or to see it from the other side: A PR campaign to strengthen bad politics.
Its just too coincidental that three of the most influential media voices of the left in the US get attacked so closely together just at a time when Karl Rove can focus on daily politics again and is not distracted by some proscecutor. I think the timing and execution are brilliant and I have lost faith in the democratic movement in the US to counter that might. My guess for the US election -> Republicans keep both - House and Senate - and might even gain seats. There is nothing coming from the other party that would make you think otherwise and every trap that is opened they fall into - the only hope that I see is that at least the last attack will just bite back at the next Colbert Report - but this will not change the overall outcome a bit.

PS: Yes I read "Colbert" instead of "Steward" before I had to correct this. sorry - sometimes its better to read articles twice if one would have time. The point still stands.

22.06.06

Record only the important things in your life

gaze_detect.jpgThe dream of many media gangstas is it to have a constant record of the world surrounding, visual as well as audible (and possible in holographic quality). This "Feed" has been featured in quite a few science fiction writings (gibson etc pp) and as beeing heralded as the ultimate truth tool it is also a privacy fear device par excelance. Even if a camera inside your eyes and a direct soundfeed straight out of your brain would be feasable you still have that enormous amount of data where only a fraction would be interesting - sleeping would just produced a noozle sound and black pictures after all - and you sleep at least 1/2 of the time during the day (daydreaming included). This part of the problem seems to be solved by the Japanese Manabe Hiroyuki working for communication giant NTT DoCoMo. The device trains itself by looking at your attention peaks. Means when you daydream the device turns off an audio/video recording and saves the environmental setting as preset - so when you next encounter a similar situation it turns on automatically without consulting your brain. As anyone can see - this will probably stay away from massmarket at the moment. Original story found at engadget.

11.06.06

Psyops, Desinformation and Controlling the Facts

You ought to admire the people architecting the media campaigns for the NeoCons. No matter how embattled they still give the direction of the talk of the day. The slogan is: "It does not matter how the public opinion is about a certain topic - as long as they talk about the topic we have given them and they are only reacting and not come up with their own topics".
This works extremely well. I guess they care shit about people refusing to believe them as long as those people are occupied with trying to uncover the truth and not accidently tripping over a much more important topic that could derail their agenda. They are fast - as soon as something creeps up that could pose a threat a lesser problem is elevated to the headlines - even things that are unfavorable of themselves - just not that unfavorable as the topic just about to be revealed. The critics barely have time to make a short statement and there we go on to the next topic - overinformation used for desinformation. The strategy is well thought out and there must be a lot of coordination going on on what to present how through who at what time. Its something the critics need to watch out for - not forget about past incidents and hold the people responsible accountable even if the topic is not on the massmedia radar at the moment. The critics need to set their own topics - refusing to even acknowledge the topics that seem utterly important on the day because chances are they are not important - just over-hyped side notes in the broader context of history.


Brig. Gen. Mark Kimmitt, the U.S. military's chief spokesman in 2004:

"The Zarqawi PSYOP program is the most successful information campaign to date."

9.06.06

The Amazing Body of Sarkawi

While you get branded as conspircy theorist whenever there is something that seems not so right, there are still things that seem so strange that not reporting about them - while most of the media just copies press releases from the white house - is ignoring your right as citizen to speak up. Especially with news for the White House as bad as they were last week - the skandal of Haditha and top military commanders saying the war is lost. So while conspiracy theories of the following event of course making the rounds on the internet already and mutiple people have spoken out in distrust about the latest publicity stunt of the US government there are hard facts that deface this is a one big lie.
For short the "news": Abu Musab al-Zarqawi - terrorist and enemy number two to the United States (no. 1 being the phantom Bin Laden) has been killed by TWO 500 pound bomb in his hideout in the northern erea of Bagdhad.
Only minutes after the airstrike - that killed nine collaborators and a woman with her child - the US Army declared that:

"We had absolutely no doubt whatsoever that Zarqawi was in the house," U.S. Major-General William Caldwell said.

Okay... Then three hours later the world is presented with photos of the dead al-Zarqawi that look like this:
al-zarqawi-dead.jpg

Okay.... all well and fine - a mass murderer dead can not be a bad thing for a peacefull world I thought. Then I started thinking. Did they say they dropped TWO 500 pound bombs on the guy? And it took them only three hours to evacuate him from a classical brick build Iraqi two story building without any reinforcements? Hmmm... It takes them sometimes days to get people out of a crumbled house that has "only" collapsed due to earth quakes. How did they manage to get someone out of a completely leveled house that has been hit by two of the biggest portable bomb the US Army posseses (there are bigger bombs of course but these are the biggest dangling on a F-Type fighter plane on a normal support mission). Here is a picture of a house hit by ONE 500 pound bomb in Falluja - also a two story building - also Iraqi made.

500poundbombdroppedfalluja.jpg

So now please someone explain me how they can find a corpse in a house that is already leveled by bomb ONE and then spread into dust by a second equally big explosion. And not only find the corpse within three hour but also find a corpse that is virtually unscathed (judging from the fotos). No matter in what floor of the house he would have been he would either be shredded to pieces by the bomb itself on the upper floors or totally crushed by the first bomb on the lower floors - but for sure he would have vaporized after the second bomb struck. In no way would a face be as intact as the one shown in the photo - except that they hit a house three blocks away and he fall off the stairs from the shock of the loud bang. I suspect he had some kind of secret DNA mixed to make his skin super strong (I mean he has regrown his bombed of leg before as can be seen in his last video appearance) and then he killed himself to worship the american precision bombs.

Update: There has been more information on the web now and pictures and such that are supposed to underline the clear victory but make my statement and distrust above even more true.
Pictures of the Bombed House and more Pictures show the devestation caused by the bomb - there is not a single piece of the concrete house that is bigger then a head - yet the soft human head of Sarkawi is unscathed. Then there is a video about the bombing that shows the first bomb ripping through the area of the house with a radius of about half a kilometer at least - so if he was just outside the house it would still have shred him to pieces seeing the hard structured house looks like it was fed into a concrete shredder. Reading a post from a rightwing blogger trying to compare this incident with the bombing of Japanese in the second world war showing people virtually unscathed doesn´t work as the people shown have been either deeply underground or far away from the explosion - Zarqawi was right underneath two 500 lbs explosions - no burnmarks and not ripped of flesh and no crushed bones - heck he was even alive when they found him and had a blue eye - only caused while his blood circulation was still running for at least 10 minutes.

What this incident achieved is manyfold - it directed attention away from a lot of unpleasing facts that the US administration was and still is facing. It has diverted the attention of the left who are writing about conspiracy theories that are easy to defuse by just calling them conspiracy theories. So enough of helping the propaganda spread the message and back to the real problems (Haditha, Afghanistan, Slave Labour in Iraq by the Coalition Forces etc etc.)

6.06.06

Total football madness

a harsh critique on media society

There is a topic that everyone seems to be talking about at the moment and that is the soccer/football world cup starting on Friday in Germany. First of all I am not a fan of football in general, while I do watch a game here or there at times when there is nothing else to do - so hardly never - I never really enjoy it and feel its an utter waste of time watching people running behind a black and white ball. With that out of the way people probably accusing me of bias now with the following statements - but it could be anything other then football if it would enter the dimension of consolidating masses of people.
Now you hear read and see in the media that our nation of great germany is absolutely exited about this World Cup - like everyone from the hardcore Punk to the old Granny from the Skinhead to the Turk everyone seems to love of what is going to happen - but how come they all are so feverish about the event?
"Give them Games and Bread and they will be happy" some old age phillosopher has said 2000 years ago (whoever I am too lazy too look it up) and its exactly what is going on - in a media bombardment that I have never seen or heard before you can not escape the topic - nowhere. Internet Radio, Magazines, Newspaper every thing and all is talking about football and all and every outlet it seems puts it in a positive light - when you tell someone you are not a big fan of the happening you get lynched and be told that you would talk bad about anything. Its one of the most dangerous viral marketing campaigns this earth has ever seen - and everyone who publishes is guilty (just like me with this article probably too). Nine out of ten television commercials are about football. Ten out of ten program commercials are about football seven out of ten sentences of the radio commenter this morning where about football (yes I counted) five out of ten statements regarding politics are about football (or the security surrounding it). Now if this would be a national event helping some poor and devastated country (like earthquake regions in Indonesia or Pakistan, war torn countries in middle Africa or East-Asia) I would totally understand it - but no we are talking about an event by a private company - the FIFA. They get unprecedented support from our - oh so poor - government and have to pay zip zero for security and most of the logistic and they get even paid when someone does advertising for them and on top they are a cartel with 100% market share in their bussiness of selling football.
Did I say that each and every media outlet helps them? I mean EVERY ONE is reporting about football since two three four month now. Every angle, every history every joke that can be made about football is on german media now. Now people tell me probably "hey just ignore it and chill". I don´t even have TV hear only Internet Radio that is not from Germany and read two to three very alternative german websites at most and still I seem to know everything about this event just from sitting in front of a TV at friends houses for an hour or two (arbitrary) or listening to the radio inside some car that happens to be on.
Still you could say "just ignore it won´t do harm". And this is the point where I am not so sure. We are having a country now where 95% think favorable about something - they form a group so to say. Lets say something disrupts this something - something bad - all of the sudden you have 95% of a huge country against something. Get where I am getting to?
To make it more precise - a terrorist plot in this environment would kill each and all rational thought it would put ALL of germany on the street and support just about any and all measures without further thinking. We hear too many hints in the last weeks that something big is going to happen (scare tacticts are on the rise - london police raids house because of "chemical bomb" - canadian police raids house with 19 terror suspects - you know that hints and scary things that just about now reach a climax again?). On top there are midterm election in the US where the republicans don´t look good and the war with Iran is not so on track and one big reason is Germanies pacifist movement which seems to be stronger then visible (according to our Bundeskanzlerin Merkel there is no war possible with the Germans "at the moment"). Now a terrorist plot big enough to create headlines would suit all of them all too well - just connect it to the Iranies and the biggest missing ally of Washington is on the boat to Mesopotamia carrying with it the hate of a whole nation.
Well that is a conspiracy theory. So to make it less dramatic then this - and it might be all to obvious and transparent - there is still that 95% of people who over the course of six month (minus three month from now and probably plus three month from now) will not be interested in much else then football - our politicians can probably push through laws that are "uncomfortable" with the general population and society at whole will not move one inch further in their evolution - just because one profit making cartel company is raking in billions of Euros.

Brave New World we live in now where was my Soma again?

3.06.06

Media Distortion: "wipe off the map" vs. "vanish from the page of time"

If you need any further proof to see in how deep shit we are since it seems that 90% of mainstream media is reporting unchecked facts, pure simple one sided propaganda and one sided political views there is this quote from the Iranian president that has been not only ripped out of context it has also been completely mistranslated. I think you do not even have to explain the difference between:

"wiped off the map"

and

"this regime occupying Jerusalem must vanish from the page of time"

not only is it not a threat against Israel but against the political power elite in Israel with all its proofed human rights violations against Palestinians and he simply states that his way of politics is surprior and history of the future will proof him right - a thing about all politicians in the world have made once in their live and there is a certain president who makes such statements on a daily basis. The second translations has been approved by multiple farsi translators who say the first one is not only ripped out of the bigger context its just utterly wrong. (more at the guardian)

Anyway if that is not enough of proof of media bias there is another president of another state that is Bushes new axis of evil - its Venezuela (Bolivia now joining). There is a documentary on google video about the failed attempt to relieve the democratically elected president from power. Its an inside story from a reporter who just happened to be there doing a larger documentary about Chavez. Its so scary how the private TV channels spin the happenings when you actually have a first hand view on the other side. The spin is so powerful that if you would not see the other side cut in you would believe it. Now needless to say that I like Chavez with his Neo-Socialistic idea and wish the best to make his dream of a people rules South America come true. The spin on Chavez is still continuing - despite lowest unemployment in Venezuelas history and the best health care system the country has seen the western media still portrays him as "killing business and making people poor and jobless" and despite him being an democratically elected leader Mr. Bush just today bashes him as beeing "undemocratic" and not valuing human rights - as if Mr. Bush would be in the position to talk about human right ever again - especially with his soldiers on trial for killing innocent Iraqis - there is neither proof nor any reports of human rights violations inside Venezuela and even the putschists getting a fair trial - but yet the mainstream media is reporting Bushs remarks without further discussion and indepth look and that is the truly scary thing. With that much media power - where every sentence you say is relayed around the world instantly without questioning you can do just about everything you wish.
People ask me why I am so vocal about politics while in real life I would never attempt to go into the slimy business. Well I am of a generation that has been exposed to different world views while both have not had enough time in my live to shape my political world view. This has somehow enabled me to look through the fogscreen and what I see disgusts me to the heart - how we can live on such a beautiful planet and all that rules is hate destruction death money. I have not much places to speak out other then here just to hope that it might open the eyes of the one or other who might one day join in a bigger revolution for life, for peace for a recognition of this planets beauty and the preservation for it. While this seems overly romantic its good for my own psychological state of mind and I hope the more people don´t buy into media messages, overhyped press releases lobbying efforts and other slimy tactics that have poisened humanity and the information it carries the brighter our future might be.

22.03.06

CNN on heavy decline says Gallup

One of the biggest companies responsible for the "Presidential approval ratings" and other more or less interesting polls is ending its partnership with CNN. The reason? - excuse me if I have to give a link to the Drudge Report - CNN´s viewership is on a heavy decline and the gallup people are leaving the sinking ship so to help their brand stay afloat.
Now why would that be interesting? Because Gallup thinks if they run their own "e-channel" they get more viewers then on CNN - or to spell it out in plain words: Gallup thinks that internet TV is already a better market then TV.
Thats a revolutionary development to say the least. Gallup is a polling station they must have one of the best statistical data on american tv usage and they think they can reach a bigger audience in the net then over the air. I am flabbergasted - this is all happening much faster then even I imagined. Gallup itself is talking about "a hurricane of change" they face and their new "e-distribution" is their answer.

13.03.06

End of TV - where does all the fuss come from?

Over years some internet types have proclaimed that the end of the masscommunication era will come to an end soon and that TV for its part as the last incarnation of significance in this era will fall. I personally did a live video broadcast to 5 simultaneous users in 1999. So all the fuss about "IPTV" or internetTV or iTV as in iPod is more then half a decade old - there have been endeavors by big companies like Microsoft to bring IPTV to the home 5-6 years ago in the bubble age - none of them worked and all projections about the TV overtaking the internet (anyone remember the ugly setop boxes which you could surf on? the browser got old just at the time when you bought one and you couldn´t upgrade) or the internet taking over TV.
Yet in the last year we have seen more and more coverage of the interenet TV revolution and I am a voicy advocat when it comes to predict the death of TV in this decade. Yet I have wondered where all this renewed interest into this matter comes from. An article on arstechnica made me think. It seems to be the Telcos themself seeing a chance to tip the whole entertainment communication iceberg towards their fiber lines. In America they have fierce competition from the cable providers who had the advantage of a coax cable infrastructure that has been good at scaling up the speed to the home and have eaten the Telcos Voice services for lunch with their uneventfull rollout of Voice over IP services. So now in return the Telcos want to get a bite out of the cable companies by getting into the Television delivery market. They are making big noise by doing so drawing lots of attention to their concept of Multicast IPTV and I think that is where a lot of the heat lately comes from.
Yet as I read through the article on Arstechnica I found so many stumbling blocks that I think the recent push of big companies into IP TV is about to fall as flat as the last one - because anybody up there seems to think that IPTV has to look exactly the same as current TV. This is the point where I am seeing there mistakes haunting them into their own dug graves. Yes its true that "live shows" and some other obscure formats need a continuus stream - but if you get a 25 Mbit connection to your home all of the sudden on demand and "view as it downloads" looks much more interesting because you can take out the biggest problem of TV - its schedule. You can choose the shows you wanna watch whenever you wanna watch them - news, comedy and about 95% of TV shows today have absolutely no need to be "broadcasted live" they are on tape before broadcast anyways. That in turn means that the whole "we bring you 300+ channels of streaming television to a new $200 settop box that will be old in less then a year when we roll out a new version of the service" will fail as well as the old "$200 dollar setop box where you could browse the net on your TV". I do firmly believe that people actually do want choice and total control over their time and that is where the current TV model falls as flat on its face as it could ever fall flat on a face and that future "IPTV" that is based on streaming channels is about to utterly fail. Yet again Apples/Googles concept of downloads together with a few sites offering streamed "live shows" and the platory of indies selling their stuff on their own or finding other clever ways to market their moving picture creations will be the way to go in the future and the time tiered television concept will be a dark shadow of the past.
Yet the roadblock for all this are still the telcos - who first of all would like their own model to succeed because then they are not only getting money from the consumers who pay their line but also from the producers who probably have to pay hefty fees to get a spot in the setop box and the telcos would be in control over the content - something that is of tremendous political value when you look at how the Bush administration uses the media for their propaganda and look how certain companies in support have gained so much market value (FOX) since the first inauguration of THE President. So having control over who displays what and when will help push through some nifty legislation outlawing the free internet as we know it that could threaten the telcos. If politics do not help for the Telcos vision to win then they are presenting us with the other hammer they still have in the closet: Tiered pricing. That so much traffic goes through their backbones is a thorn in their eye and they want to get money from everyone offering anything that uses bandwidth - everyone ever encoded a video for the net knows that it is indeed a bandwidth killer - with the right kind of pricing the telcos could cut out any other IPTV service then their own and with television corporations not really wanting the net to take over their cake and eat it all at once they will heavily support any move by the telcos to limit indies and creative concepts to fly off.
Yet all is not bad yet and the above is true for the US - in Europe things will go along the same lines but much much too late to change the true revolution coming from within and seeing sweden having a new political party that was formed from the users of a very very well know bittorrent tracker trying to overthrow the copyright laws and openly speaking out for the freedom of the media I do see a bright future for true independent programming without limits on this side of the pond.

12.03.06

End of TV: Speciality programms to the net first

As a recent article in the New York Times points out there is a trend - away from the popular darling iTMS - that TV shows and programming that has not the multimillion mass following is going to the net first. Shows that have not - according to blurry TV industry polling - reached the threshold to be "on air" are going "on net". This includes old shows that got canceled and odd things like sailing shows.
My knowledge of the TV industrie that I have grown into tells me that this will tip the media consumption to these kind of shows in a heart beat - while overall some shows might fair well on a forced programm schedule TV execs did everything to get the cheapest shows the highest ratings - putting them in high value time slots etc. If people are forced to choose their programming in the near future I think current TV show successes that make the majority population dumber have a much bigger problem of gaining access then smaller high speciality shows that target a specific audience and the niches are lots. Everyone has a hobby or does a sport or has a certain interest that is not entertainment oriented - if you could build knowledge or see how others fair in your area of interest wouldn´t you choose such a show over pure dumb entertainment like those cheaply produced early evening shows? Wouldn´t you tune into a news show that actually is critically of what is says over the "modern" entertainment news shows forced down your throat on forced time programming TV of the last century?
The media is picking it up as if we are walking into a case of natural evolution - I for one predict a revolution that is spells the death for television for a less controlled more critical more diverse media of the future - a media with dissent and the same "moving pictures appeal" of the modern day couch potato producer.

11.03.06

American Newspaper Propaganda

What great times we are living in. The american newspapers can get away with such a blatant in the face propaganda campaign its beyond believability. An article on the NewYorkTimes about a meeting of the Republican Party "showcasing" their candidates quotes Senetor McCain - the guy who lost the race for presidential candidacy against Bush in 2000 - with the following sentence:


"Anybody who says the president of the United States is lying about weapons of mass destruction is lying"

well I thought we settled in the worldwide media that there have been no weapons of mass destruction and that everyone in the white house knew about it. Its a fact not something that still has to be proven - then again we have been used to hear those "allegations" from the Republicans for quite a while now - what really stuns me is that the New York Times prints this sentence - seemingly out of context at that - without further commenting or telling the dear reader at least that there is an issue with that sentence - a practice you see in about every interview of a Democrat - accusations or tiny little wordings afterward that question a certain position. It seems dissent in America is absolutely lost and even the most blatant lies still make it straight through the media without any editing. And the sentence even accusing others of lying is just too much to bear.

10.03.06

The day TV died …

… will be marked in history as the day that was yesterday. Apple puts a subscription system into the iTunes music store for TV downloads and per se its not subscription. Its more like a bundle price for more then one TV show of a certain kind and drive down the cost per show to something like 62 cent... Now with rocketboom showing how TV news can be made without a TV station behind it and Apple showing how people can get their favorite shows at a price point that almost makes sense without any advertising and long lost hours and no roadblock apearing on the horizon and maybe an Apple Portable TV (yes I for one do believe the fullsize Video iPod rumors on the web are true - they make hell lot of sense at least) you are set to a media revolution. Noone is forced to watch anything - the diversity will spread once Apple allows Indies to sell their shows too. The "Anyone can be a publisher" metapher will likely come to fruition and everyone may be earning money - more or less - through a modell like that. The pitfall? Apple will rise to global entertainment power and be a monopoly - I for one think an Apple monopoly in the entertainment market (music and TV) is as bad as a Microsoft monopoly in the OS market - even if it only is because they are an american company and I do not like to see forced content from a fascist state. Other then that Apple seems the only capable company of overlooking distribution problems, technical difficulties and has the talent to convince the big guys from giving up control so its the only company set up to make this media revolution happen - as long as TV dies a faster death I am for the moment all for it. And yes I for one still think a real movie distribution would even rock me - I have never bought a single song through iTunes - I just listen to webradio and get mixes from "friend DJs". I have no iPod. A movie store would lure me in. I mean I pay like 1-5 euros for a DVD rental per day around here - most of the time I double and tripple that because I forget to return the suckers... So a movie store where I OWN the a copy of a certain movie for like 4.99 Euros or the like or a "subscription" of 10 movies per month for 19.99 Euro that I can keep after watching would be killer and Apple would have gotten me to become a Apple Entertainment Customer too.
Imagine a world where TV shows will be produced and continued on their TRUE value because each and every viewer finances it. No marketing trailer hype artificially inflating the value of a show - its all down to the real quality and value for the customers. I see golden times ahead for actual usefull programming - but maybe the couch potatos have already degenerated to a point where this is just pure philosophical and Big Brother would be the best seller on iTunes TV store?
Then there is a George Lucas - rising to richness through a multibillion dollar imperium of six well know space sagas - telling the world the time for multimillion dollar movie productions is over - the next years will see an indie movie revolution with budgets of maximum of 15 million dollars. This view fits perfectly into an iTunes Movie Store concept and is a wise foresight - seeing all the KingoKongo remixes fall flat on their faces money wise and new triology phantasie books with original content are in short supply.
So seeing all this it seems we are on the eve of the revolution that will lead to a complete reorganisation of media distribution in the next five years and the media conglomerates have to put on that warm jacket - the creativity corner in the ring is waiting for that final punch.

20.01.06

Television must be liberated.

In my current (three years ongoing) research on the origins of VJing I just stumbled across a quote from the Videosynthesizer Pioneer Eric Siegel.

EricSiegel_FalkG_1992b_117a.jpg"The American Dream no longer is evolving. It's in a state of decay. Television must be liberated."

Eric Siegel
in the 1960s

14.01.06

German neocon propaganda in full swing

Now that we have a neoconservative led chancellor(in) in germany all of the sudden the news media is reporting everything goes well and that the former evil US is now our friend again. A reverse in only two month that is unjustified in all regards - neither is our economy going a tiny bit stronger nor did we have more jobs to offer nor has the american president changed - but yet all of the sudden the german media is talking about "everyone is happy" "study:new chancellor is supported by most germans" "study proofs:most germans like to get back into atomic energy" "most germans would like better relationship with the USA".
I really absolutely do not understand. NOTHING has changed. We have the same jobless rate, the same number off layoff from big companies, america is preparing a new war which most germans do not support.
I guess it has to do with an intense media push sponsored by the neocons in america and germany. Heavily financed by big industry groups (atomenergy lobby, military suppliers - which we have plenty in germany, energy suppliers etc etc) and government speakers preparing those nice psychological speeches that will sink in with the masses on both sides of the ocean - just to show in what happy Brave New World we are living where everything is just fine - only that we are on the brink of a nuclear war and that some of the most obvious problems for the next years are not even in the public discussion at all and that the economical divide is just getting bigger and bigger - some argue it never has been as big in humans history - not even in the darkest times - then it is now. So when you read that article in Spiegel or Focus in the take it with a pound of grainy salt.

16.12.05

The future of TV

I would like to write more but don´t have the time. There are a couple of "future of TV" articles out in the blogs todays that seem to look at short term and long term problems TV and its slow underlying apperatus faces. The most interesting is from the Bubble Generation blog and has an indepth analysis of what is going wrong in TV where TV is headed (new delivery methods) but where it should be headed if it wants survival (unbundling argument again a little deeper explained)

It's not that execs will be disintermediated; it's that newer, radically more efficient mechanisms for aggregating information about consumer preferences and expectations - and then using that info to make production in turn, hyperefficient; to produce and deliver content in ways that maximize utility - are slowly taking their place, making them irrelevant. The value at the core - execs, stars, marketing, meetings, and memos - is being replaced by decentralized communities and markets, where connected consumers self-organize around the media they love.

And there is more on the Particletree.

15.12.05

The Pentagons $300 mio. stealth PR

There are lots of people who unquestionably believe what mainstream news media says. Most read one or two newspapers and watch one or two newsshows on TV. When confronting them problems in news coverage they tell you you are a conspiracy theorist and that the news outlets have a lot of credentials that can´t be dismissed. If you can´t confront these people with hard evidence - best would be first hand experience - they do not stop believing in the massmedias message. Now a very hard evidence not to believe anything that comes from massmedia (and maybe even from certain blogs)regarding the US is the report by the USA Today that talks about a $300 million Pentagon budget for pro US propaganda around the world. The report cites that the money will be spend to stealthy plant messages that are not traceable to the US government inside Allied and Islamic countries to polish up the bad image of the US. In other terms the US is using the guerrilla PR tactics to get a better world wide image on the effective. Now what that means is: Question every news regarding the US or an US endeavor (Iraq, Iran, NorthKorea, Israel, Pakistan, China). Try to find different accounts of a certain news that is of interest. Let logic do its part to decipher a news. Tell friends that news in the media can not be easily trusted. I know this all sounds obvious to most people reading blogs but its something that in the real world people seem not to get a grip of yet.

14.12.05

TV - the big mind numbing drug

that puts the world into a virtual slave mode. An article over at the information clearinghouse is talking about TV and the problems it causes in society. It sums up very strongly how I feel about TV - why my home is TV free and I put everyone to hell who wants to introduce TV in here. Interestingly enough they also cite games in the article to make none-thinking, "living in a virtual world" couch potatoes out of yourself. This part I partially agree. As TV games can be as addictive and virtual as TV. Games in the contrary give interaction and most games played addictivly today are online games that force you to interact with other humans - yes still in a virtual world but still somehow humans. So reading Joi Itos comment recently about how he "lost the fun wrting on his blog - maybe because he is playing too much World of Warcraft" it might even lend credibility to the fact that games do posses the same mind dumbing druggy power - even on highly intelligent people (who might even not admitting how much it affect them - talking about me personally here as well - I just tossed away that Warcraft III game because I could see a similar effect on me).
Games or not the much bigger problem at the moment is TV. Ralph Nader is quoted in the article to have said that "90% of television is commercial". That makes 90% of television purely entertainment without anything gained for personal experience or education. Given that a normal western person watches about 2-4 hours a day thats a huge amount of time lost to virtual banalities in his/her life. Ones television was pipped as a tool for education and I still think that it would be a great tool for education if it would be used as such.

Those who are seduced and mesmerized by television are not likely to make trouble. They are not going to question corporate America’s version of reality and make waves for the status quo. Television is junk food for the mind that leads to morbid mental obesity. The result is impaired mental function. It stifles free thought and inhibits human potential. Nothing in the history of civilization has been more responsible for dumbing down the American public than commercial television. Television numbs the mind and impoverishes the spirit. It is an essential tool of the corporations that have hijacked the American government and led to the commodification of everything from forests to human labor. Without the commanding and highly addictive drug of television, America’s powerful military industrial complex, with its ambitions for world domination, would be rendered moot.

12.12.05

More nails in TVs coffin

In a report about a recent study (oh yes studies that support ones own theories are always welcome for the little bit of propagandistic spin) by the economy magazin "Capital" the german Netzeitung states that the internet is playing a more and more dominant role in opinion making especially in the male 14-39 years demography. TV is more and more seen as a "side" medium - running along when the main attention is on the PC - a position that up until now was the market for radio. According to the report the obvious trend has not spurred a new thinking with the TV administration folks who still dismiss it as "to small percentage to worry". The study points out that especially in the younger generation the media usage pattern is burned in and will shape the future - it will accelerate fast and furiously until TV has become a niche medium. Already in the above described demographic 55% - more then half of the asked people turn to the internet to make an opinion compared to 39% that get their brainwash from TV. What seems like a big slap in the face of the new economists of the last 6 years who always said that TV will be predominant in the years to come and that the internet might be integrated into TV - and a lot of failed TVwithInternetAppliances later - 59% of the young male demographic would like to see TV integrated into the internet - the older population is more conservative with only 39% of the 30-39 year old wanting to put tv on the net.
The study sees the young male demographic as the leading force for future technologic development and says the trend is already irreversible and will accelerate. Welcome to the free speech everything seems possible without tabu zone our massmedia overlords - now its our battleground you are entering - may no force be with you to take over the citizen media of the new intelligent information age.

10.12.05

The short attention span of the media

Just over a week ago the massmedia of the world was abuzz with headlines on how the US had used white phospherous to burn out Falluja and its residences. The hype lasted exactly two days and then other news completly overtook the subject. As it stands right now NOTHING has been done. I mean its not like we are talking about some stock market numbers that change every day or about some music star crashing his car while drunk - we are talking about the self named "police of the world" killing thousands of inhabitants of a city with chemical weapon. Its absolutely shocking how the world completely forgets about those things twice and how the american government can get away with such a crime without any questioning - meanwhile the puppet government in Iraq is putting Saddam on trial for exactly the same things (read Bagdhad burning for more insight on what I mean). Instead the world wide media is concentrating on other serious crimes of the day - which will be forgotten in a week - like the abduction and torture of a complete innocent german civilian in Serbia. All the US has to do is say "oh it wasn´t so bad" (not even denying it - just saying it is all not as bad as the world makes it out) and everyone forgets in about a week. HOW STUPID DO THEY THINK WE ARE?
Not only have I lost complete absolute trust in every western government around the world - I do also blame the media to play the dirty political game for self enrichment and power grabbing. It can not be that all checks and balances have gone overboard in the course of less then five years. As much as I do not like absolutistic regimes with their own problems - I do think some of the other world powers (China, Iran, Venezuela etc) that be should band together just to counter the ruling unchecked power block of the westernized world with a huge media push of their own.

8.12.05

TV in a postmodern world

Terry Heaton writes about the future of TV and the apparent challenges it faces and the opportunities for the medium. With some official looking graphics he goes into what he says would be the unbundling of traditional TV. Making the content selectable taking apart for example a TV News Show into Sports, Weather, International New, Local News and posting each one to the web and by generating a income with some advanced programming that goes into a specific topic (like a transmission of a whole sports game in full length or an indepth documentary). I would like to challenge his view - or add to it - by saying why do we need huge mega media corporations to do this? Isn´t a fan of a specific sports event more capable to deliver the news on his video blog? Or an independent journalist more respectable researching a specific topic for a documentary. Wouldn´t a giant news database that would collect news semi automatically (ala google news) from local sources be a better more accurate more balanced Reuters? I just can´t give up hope that the future of any information lies in the hands of smaller operating units rather then multimega corporations as it would deliver a more close to life accounts of the world around us. The ongoing dialog that everyone is talking about would deepen and therefore things would get multiple perspectives. Also it would be harder for politicians to control or manipulate media as its been done so regularly. So in the end its not only the unbundling of specific broadcast - that might be a short term measure for the massmedia to stay alive a little while longer - its about an total splinter of communication and information down to each and every individual (with web access). The very absolutely best example that is already happening now is the Bagdhad Burning Blog by Riverbend - a Iraqi girl blogging from inside Bagdhad for as long as the war is going on and giving a very accurate account of the feelings and happenings from a very individual perspective that rivals every news about Iraq at the moment. Reading her entries gives you much more insights into the every day problems piling up in Bagdhad and the nonesense some of the massmedia is telling the educated western world. Now not with video yet - as video blogs are still harder to make - but I guess the theory is that all todays massmedia will be "hard hit" with personal perspectives of individual reporters - TV, Text or Radio.

7.12.05

The slow death of old new media

You have seen me here reporting about death of the TV a lot - a topic which I follow closely as it affects me personally and would be of such benefit to human society - but putting personal feelings aside - TV seems not the only one last century medium that slowly dies - at stake seem to be ALL of them. Cinema, Radio, TV, Newspapers - all in the process of loosing their market power and being replaced by some or other web enabled variant. First of all comes an article from roblimo from slashdot trying to shed light on what are newspapers doing wrong with some handy number of how bad the newspaper market really looks. The San Francisco Chronicle has lost 16.4% of its dead tree readership in the last year alone! The example that he is picking to show the world what newspapers are doing wrong - the very local Bradenton Herald - lost 3.5% in the same last year. He tells them - get to the web and get the webcontent more up to date - print a collection of all webarticles at one a clock and send them off to the few who still prefer dead trees in their houses. Also engage your readers in open communication - take advise from them and let them correct what needs to be corrected as in slashdots own service.
This was yesterday.
Today I stumble across two other articles. First one via delicios future tag that tells us how bad german cinemas did this year - a steady decline since four years now by the way - with last years beeing better because of some very good films but over the last four years a steady decline. So year over year they lost 20,2% of their visitors. The Tagesschau blames it not only on bad movies (so I do blame it a lot on those) but also on file sharing and home theaters. Someone disputed my claim that cinemas are dying on VJCentral I couldn´t dig up the proof back then - well here it is - it can´t get more apparent. Even the very bad for cinemas year 2003 was much better then this one.
So whats left? Radio. Well podcasts, downloadable music in unseen quantities, sharing swapping downloading creative commons, community radios, internet streams compared to a constant bombardment of chart music mixed with commercials straight from the crypt - I never thought how much this could impact radio - myself an avid radio listener. Apparently it seems hard to really measure the actual radio listeners (compared to the quotas) but at a recent Reuters Media and Advertising Summit advertising executives are talking about radio as if it was already dead. A mixture of new technology and bad bad programming (and I guess its even more true in the states) is leading to the black box six feet under for radio stations at an immense rate.
What gives? Its not only the net that prompts those developments for the old last century media - its also bad programming and bad planning - the net speeds up the process by giving an alternative - interestingly enough the net also has the power to overthrow the media conglomerates at the same time by giving everyone a voice, a canvas, a antenna and a roll of film. Artists, writers actors, moderators, creative people rejoice - its time to start reshaping the media. Diversity and almost unlimited amounts of views and content will bring us closer together and let us advance and develop a greater understanding for each other - religion, politics, believes, technology - the bidirectional communication approach of the net enables us for the first time since smoke signs and drum chains to unfiltered uncontrolled global thought exchange.
If it wouldn´t be for the powers that be that would like to stop this from happening and there I need to throw some more salt into the sweet soup. A lawsuit in germany against the heise Verlag states that they are responsible for everything written in the comment section on their online publications - means they need to censor their own readers if there is any questionable content - and you thought we live in a free speech world... The other one is as serious. Someone in the open online encyclopedia Wikipedia was altering an article on John Seigenthaler that accused him of having his part on the assassination of the Kennedy brothers John F. and Bob. Even so in America a lawsuit against the parent company seems not to happen the wikipedia administration has closed the ability to create new articles or alter older ones for everyone not registered - a real setback for the wiki revolution and the bidirectional web.
The struggle for both sides will continue - the free open side and the old "we don´t want to move into a new information society were everything can be said always". The powers that are will challenge the powers that be as it always happened and I suggest that we might even see dead people over this sooner or later - the capital just doesn´t want to loose control of their slaves.

30.11.05

The end of Free TV in Germany?!

What Telepolis (german) reports today comes right on the heels of yesterdays report about Internet usage in Europe. Apperently the private TV stations in Germany think about going PayTV all together. Pro7, Sat1, RTL, RTL2 and all substation want a "cheap" PayTV model for their programming very soon the plans are already so far that the newer Satellite receivers support the system. Still about 15 million TV household would need to upgrade their satellite equipment and they want to quit out of terrestrial completely. I think at least here in Germany were money in the hand of the ordinary people seems to be getting less and less its just another dig in the grave of TV - especially when people are forced to upgrade their satellite equipment - something around 200 Euros. The reason behind this move are "stagnating commercial prices" - why that would be? Bad programming, less viewers I would guess.

29.11.05

European Internet Usage up sharply

5000channeluniverse.jpgWell I don´t want to beat the dying horse more then necessary but a recent report suggests that people are looking more and more to the internet for their news and entertainment fix (and therefore must be spending less time in front of that massmedia thingy that will suffer in the short future). 24 percent of all people asked in a recent study (german) say that they are spending more then 16 hours weekly in front of the net. The usage time has increased 17% when compared to 2004. Mighty numbers with lots implications. Twelve percent of the users in Europe load Podcasts at least once a month.
Oh and the man on the picture won´t be converted so fast with his 5000 television channels.

Something for the MusikIndustry

Ah I shied away to talk about rootkits and DRM for a while - things that plague about any bigger CD release as of now. Multiple studies are now surfacing that show just how damaging the DRM measures are for the big labels and how small labels benefit greatly when they make their music available for free and easy to access. The former study states that

"Downloads have an effect on sales which is statistically indistinguishable from zero."

The other says that big bands and labels are suffering from downloads but universally all small bands who open up their music catalog have benefited from more sales and fuller concerts.

Ars Technica writes:

The BBC reports that a whole generation of Europeans no longer see music as something that ought to be paid for. Jupiter analyst Mark Mulligan warns that children are being raised on a "limitless diet of free and disposable music." He sees this, unsurprisingly, as a Bad Thing (tm), but only time will tell if file-swapping music lovers are shooting themselves in the foot by putting the labels out of business, or whether they are making possible the growth of a new, artist-driven economy where even niche bands can earn a living.

I have always thought that Music on a platter is a way to promote your art - thus as freely distributed as possible - fans will know how to support a band when it comes to that. The income should come from concerts where you are doing a service - I think this whole industry goes more into that service rather then product direction.

23.11.05

X-ing out the Vice President

CheneyX.pngOne of the coolest media hacks ever has happened at the biggest propaganda news station of the US - CNN. I really believe that media hackers are the bright future of peaceful protest - a protest that can reach millions and has ultimately more impact then any ten people on the street of a cold November morning. And this first hack shows that this is absolutely true as the world is abuzz with the news that CNN put a big black X over US Vicepresident Cheneys face when he was trying to make a case that the US administration did not lie. The timing and the specificality of this makes it clear that it was intended by someone who access to the tape before it went to the broadcasting tapedeck. It looks like it was done fast and I guess it really happened on the way some curier took a little detour with it or whatever but it happened and I guess it was only the beginning of might be a true media war - soon you will be strip searched before entering broadcasting towers. Protestbeaming, hijacking Moving Picture Billbords and putting subliminal messages on to broadcast shows is going to be a big hobby for young revolutionaries in the future. I can only recommend again "Channel Zero" by Brian Wood as the comic who predicted the future in that regard to good.
By the way CNN wants the world to believe that it was a computer bug. Maybe the computers are smarter then humans now?

18.11.05

The end of Print already? The Net at danger!

Hubert Burda (65 years old) - grandson and manager of one of Germanys biggest printing house with publications like "Focus" or the "Burda Mode Magazine" is saying that he will never open a new printing plant - he says at the moment printing will not go away but he does not see a bright future in the printing press. "News has now become a commodity, thanks to the Internet, so we must differentiate ourselves in other ways" he says. Which goes hand in hand with all big media reshuffles many have been predicting in the last years. He says that the only way to keep a fellow readership is by creating "communities" to interact with. I am a little startled that all this is happening already - first print then radio then TV was always my personal prediction and that the big medias are already stopping to invest in their longtime profitable businesses is telling - that an "old" man is at the forefront of this - one I would have thought to be a conservative - reading the Focus magazine from time to time is even more interesting. Now the implications are not so rosy. I always thought the collosses of big media might be too late to the game to gain a big foothold into the free net as we know it but ultimately this might not be the case - even before the independent bloggers could gain momentum with a big enough fellowship to rival the conservative traditionals they are entering the battlefield with their big budgets and lemming masses rallied behind them to take the lead in mass thought making again.
How to stop them the carriers and big corpos to take away what most bloggers, online activists and communities have taken for granted in the last 10 years or so Doc Sears wrote an highly interestingly article about what the net is and whats it about to become if no one realizes the risks in the first place. Interesting times indeed and a big battle of an society based on self thinking individuals and a corporate led mass society ahead.

27.10.05

Media selfreflection? Thank you Mr. Fitzgerald

In a statement that I have not heard before from a mass media institution - and one that is even closer to the republican party in america then most others - it seems a kind of selfreflection takes place and the washingtonpost is not the only one.

We are living in an uneasy moment of moral crisis and institutional disintegration in politics as well as journalism.

Wow - I mean do they actually say they sucked the past 10 years at least and have overseen major developments in politics that were so crystal clear as for a simple search engine in the year 2000 to make sense out of it? Do they really finally think that all their attention grabbing stories of the past were useless and that they want to resort to real journalism? That I see a statement like that in my lifetime is marvelous - guess what I think they have come to the conclusion a little tiny bit (about five years) to late. This self reflection will do one thing: lend tremendous credibility to the web that was babbling those things when they happened and not days - month - years later. Now who did you say bombed the world trade center? Isn´t that a question that after all that has been said about the current administration in the current "leak case" - as they mildly put it - should be asked again? A question that has been answered by Massmedia exactly the way the Bush administration wanted the Massmedia to answer it just like they wanted a name of a secret agent on the front page of every major news show in the US - a question that only the most diehard are still asking. Forget Yellow cake, WMDs or alQuaida in Saddams Iraq - it all points to deeper things - long term strategies where a event like the one in New York in this September 2001 - the year the president was shown as failure - fit just a tiny little bit too perfectly. I do NOT believe what has been said about security and terror and all those things that have been beaten to death - what a dangerous world - oh I am still alive - I never did and partially all those who don´t are proven right on track - even now with support from those who always stated the contrary - the big government fed massmedia which has not grasped that the grapevine in the internet has always made different statements - and as it turns out more correct statements. I do not want anyone ever tell me I am a conspiracy theorist or whatever people like me are accused when saying things that contradict mass medias message. More and more things that have been said about the Bush conspiracy are turning out to be true - just much too late to undo the evil they have already done - like turning the whole western hemisphere into a police controlled prison with surveillance everywhere, biometric passports and a government controlled media - just like we had in eastern germany and in NO regard is president Bush and his shadowy cabinett any better then the socialist or kommunist rulers of the past - they all run down a system with a good intention (democracy, kommunism, socialism) - just to feed their power - hunger. What has changed for the first time in world history is - that no matter where you are in the world - the internet has us connected - the window for lies has become smaller and now the internet seems to get a final credential on telling more truth then the 20th century massmedia. I hope it will boost confidence that sitting there in front of your screen writing thousands of words a day does make a difference and will make even more a difference now that the old school media has officially called themselves liars, thief's of personal freedom and unprofessional journalist.

Anticommercial Break

Gif - Short - Free - Deep - brilliant - not much more to say.

22.10.05

War with Syria?

or how one mans word can change public reception

Next to Iran there is another "rogue state" on the "axis of evil" that the world needs to get rid of - or so the Bush administrations and their various poodles want you to believe - the independend state is Syria and is already in long conflict with the US over "making sure insurgents are getting into Iraq" - even so about 98% of all Insurgents captured are Iraqies and not "foreign terrorists fighting in the name of Allah". Still Syria is a threat to Israel and is a nice boardering country to Iran - so a stop in between before getting all over Iran would be to assimilate Syria with its weak military and sparsely populated deserts. Apperently there have been already multiple boarder incidents where also at least 5 Syrian soldiers lost their lifes to American firepower. Now since we all know that Mr. Bush with all its power still needs to make a case for the public to go to war he is using a highly controversial incident from last year to just go invade the sovereign country. The incident is the murder of the former prime minister of Lebanon - Mr. Hariri. Now this death was a mystery in itself - as the US supported prime minister of Lebanon not really posed a urgend threat to Syria in the first place and that the only side that could win in such a crime would be the PR department of the US and Israel. Now an independend german special prosecutor was send to Syria and Lebanon to investigate the case. His findings sound like they were written by the US department for misinformation as they cater about any allegation the US has made in the case. All mass media of the world is now reporting that the Mehlis report is final and that the US will push a UN Security Counsel meeting to make Syria face consequences or as John Bolton - US ambassador to the UN - said: "All option are on the table now that Syria has been convicted for this crime". Now what? There are so many false statements in the mainstream press that you might think that the whole world wide independent media outlets are completely infiltrated by the Bush administration - rarely is there any newspaper asking questions and most just give out the words from Bush and and his shadowy cabinet. Some blogs are even say "Syria is screwed".
The most interesting thing is in the end that the search for evidence is not even over - its was a progress report by Mr. Mehlis to the UN with the wish to continue his search for another month because there where difficulties researching the case and problems with the witnesses.
Now very interesting lets see who the witnesses are: One person - already convicted by a court before of fraud and lying. Spiegel.de reports the witness was even pointed to by the uncle of the current leader of Syria and this uncle wanting to topple Assad for a long time.
So a former dissident with strong ties to Israel and the US is pointing to ONE witness that claims that he has provided the apartment for the conspiracy meetings and that top level individuals up to the current president of Lebanon and the interior minister of Syria where planning the attack them self. And the witness is a convicted criminal which was tried to spreading FUD before.
The case seems to have been made now - no matter what Mehlis will present on November 15th the world will have moved on and a charge in the Security Counsel will be imminent with Russia and China vetoing a move against Syria (Russia just sold Syria brand new Surface to Air and Surface to Surface Missles) and the US telling the world "then we have to act alone".
Deception of media and the public at its best again. Just count the times the Media picked up the words of Assad in defence and the times they picked up John Bolton in offense - just go to google news and count - its interesting.

17.10.05

Forming Public Opinions

With a Bush administration plummeting in approval ratings and a majority of US citizens favoring an impeachment process the rats in the white house are repainting public opinion again. How subtle but still blunt this going is outright amazing. A New York Times article is now at the forefront again of this (as they were wrongly before with the Weapons of Mass Destruction in Iraq) and reciting Mr. Bush:

Mr. Bush's own way of talking about the future, in Iraq and beyond, has undergone a subtle but significant change in recent weeks. In several speeches, he has begun warning that the insurgency is already metastasizing into a far broader struggle to "establish a radical Islamic empire that spans from Spain to Indonesia." While he still predicts victory, he appears to be preparing the country for a struggle of cold war proportions.

So say what? Its not about Iraq anymore? Not about Weapons of Massdestruction? Not about Terrorism? Its now war of civilization - the good west against Islam?
This adds credibility that the administration is trying to reshape public opinion to go to war with Syria and Iran soon and they prepare for that epic struggle that will make the cold war look like happy wonderland in comparison. So I will be on the lookout from the US government (and our own German New Neoncon Overlords) for more pitches in these direction and I think I will find plenty soon as the new Media Offensive of the White House gets into full swing.

No stupid its not about WMD, Terrorism or Democracy in the Middle East - its about Islam wanting to end the world... We have to stop them in any way possible even if it mean nuking the shit out of them...

14.10.05

The Internet Video Hype

After Apples Video iPod announcment yesterday came an announcment by MTV to have a new channel - mtvU Uber (or do the mean Über? is this the start of a germanificiation of english?) exclusively distributed over broadband and its streaming and its free as in beer. They run some of the same shows as normal MTV but also air productions that are influenced by "college students watching Über". The show is only available in Windows Media 9 format with all the accompanied DRM crap (why the show is for free?) and therefore not watchable on any mac or iPod. Next to Apples announcment and this and a gazilion of other broadcasts and videos on the net it seems the net will replace TV sooner then most think. The only problem right now is infrastructure at the server ends (possibly the best bet on the market beeing Apples iTMS right now with an already successfully distribution model that can handle lots of traffic) the tools - again the iPod with its current market share having a head start over other portable movie players and a STANDARDIZED CODEC. The last one seems the most important in the battle over ultimate dominance of the newTV. Open standards are nice - like MPEG4 but by no means is this the standard yet set on the net - there is still divX not to be counted out and the notorious Windows Media Format 9 with its crappy "I call home to tell big brother what you are watching" DRM. The market will decide but all bets go in direction MPEG4 H.264 right now as the soon to be number one digital movie player will ONLY play this (and normal Mpeg4) setting a defacto standard that the whole industry will follow. I already see most vloggers asking "how can I convert my .wmv files to .m4v (yes thats the new official ending for MPG4). What gives? I predict that the next year will see a shake out in Standards with only Microsoft trying to hold on with wmv undtil the end and fail and the open standard MPEG4 embraced by Apple will survive (expect to see the first illegal movie torrents use h.264 in the next weeks - the "Jack the Rippa" entry from two days ago) then you see most - if not all TV shows be available on some distribution channel or the other (again expect Apple be the number one here as they have already set the standard). After that we will see Hollywood movies (given the bandwidth rises during the next year for the majority of households) for cheap download ($4.99 and you own it) and then have all major news broadcasts switch over (maybe even to late to have the same impact as independ news broadcasters have gathered by then - one can wish right?) and then WHY IN EARTH WOULD I WANT TO WATCH TV? Everything is available on demand when I want it - advertising only in those things that are free of charge and I can choose not only from major TV stations but from a unlimited amount of sources to get my information and entertainment. I proclaim hereby TV is dead in less then a year (or are at the point of no reanimation). And seeing as how Apple is positioning itself right now - giving the independ a voice with video podcasts (and even soon the option to earn money!) and the big production studios a new way to make revenue for things they already have financed through advertising on TV they have the head start already and its hard to stop them.

12.10.05

Microsofts Powergrab - IPTV...

It seems that all antitrust cases against Microsoft have done nothing to stop this company with the two world richest mans on top to further expand their powerhungry network. An article in the Seattle Times talks about how Microsoft is venturing into the realm of TV and draws up the plan that sends shivers down anyones "independent media" spines. Over the course of the last 10 years - besides lots of publicly failed products - Microsoft has been buying into big Telephone and Cable companies to roll out its great Microsoftish "IPTV". The claim is that this system will deliver a new TV experience and you can now get it from Comcast in Texas for example. Comcast puts in a fibreoptic line for free when you get the $40 service. Well what you get is a Microsoft controlled TV inside your computer - which would be a total failure or at least just another player in the cable TV bussiness - but what this also gets you is a Microsoft controlled Internet - and I think that is the grand strategy by Microsoft who still are not over the loss of control they experienced through the advent of free internet communication that does not always favors their products - music distribution, video distribution, instant messaging, cellphones - the great technologies of the modern age come to mind where in neither Microsoft has any real advantage. Microsoft vertically integrating through carriers (stakes at AT&T and others) and content delivery (the IPTV) and consumer products (XBOX, Windows etc) is a scary thought and with their cash at hand they could subside all these into the 80% market share.

3.10.05

The 33 right hands of Zarkawi

isn´t the US great? - Just two days ago they killed the second hand to the Al-Quaida group in Iraqs leader Zarkawi, or so they claim. "But wait!" the acknowledged reader of the mainstream controlled news media my scream "didn´t they kill this guy just 3 weeks ago? Or two month ago?". It seems Zarkawi has an infinite supply of top aides and second hands and by killing one their seems to grow 5 more just like the snakes on Medusas head. The blogenlust Blog has a list of 33 aides of Zarkawi killed lately...

22.08.05

Veoh - Television 2.0?

veoh.pngSome mail that got through to me in my still not acceptable working condition in Istanbul - a mail that kinda grabbed my attention. It was from Veoh - a company I never heard of before but came from a person I instantly recognized as one of the "VideoBlogging" oldschoolers. So the mail kindly invited me to beta-test what they call Television 2.0. Anyone knowing me and my deep reservations toward Television 1.0 could guess that I am more then interested in trying this out. I can still not succesfully log onto their system yet but here is what the whole thing is about:

Its finally a video streaming peercasting model that - if you have some bandwidth gets you decentralized FULLSCREEN (720x576 25fps PAL or 640x480 30fps NTSC) video - streaming that is. All without a central server all with the humble mission to give everyone a voice who wants to share a thought. That is all I am ever asking for a Television 2.0 and if they can deliver on their claim I am a very happy person. Questions remain: How do they finance? Right now they got class-A venture capital. On advisory board sitting people from CocaCola, HP etc etc. An inquiry from me about how this whole model works out there in the capitalistic consumer world has not gotten an answer yet.
They published a "white paper" with an rough explanation of their approach. To bad the protocoll is not open. Again a company that only halfly understands the importance about open standard protocols to make a product successful.

21.06.05

OSCE for giving bloggers press freedom

The OSCEs (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) Internet Conference is proclaiming that bloggers should get the same freedom and rights as the "normal" press people enjoy.

The Internet combines various types of media, and new publishing tools such as blogging are developing. Internet writers and online journalists should be legally protected under the basic principle of the right to freedom of expression and the complementary rights of privacy and protection of sources.

That goes hand in hand with a declaration that permits authorities from censor or hinder access any net content without a normal trial.

Any requirement to register websites with governmental authorities is not acceptable. Unlike licensing scarce resources such as broadcasting frequencies, an abundant infrastructure like the Internet does not justify official assignment of licenses. On the contrary, mandatory registration of online publications might stifle the free exchange of ideas, opinions, and information on the Internet.

Contrary to last years declaration that was only giving recommendations to its member countries - this years proclamation is partially binding and harsh in words.

Full declaration.

landslide TV decline in Europe

From time to time I stumble across reports how TV usage is declining in comparison to internet usage. A recent study in Europe leads you to believe that this decline is on a tipping point in the advertisers darling target group - young people. 46% of all questioned people between 15 and 24 years old say they are spending more time in front of the internet then in front of TV. That means we are on the brink of seeing TV falling into irrelevance in the near future in this target group. The study needs to be taken with a grain of salt as it was sponsored by the European Interactive Advertising Association - a lobbying group for internet advertisments that is interested to see TV die but still their have been 7000 people asked and the trend is very clear - internet seems to become more interesting then TV and is already more interesting Newspapers and Printmagazins. Its only a matter of few years when the young generation will abandon TV in all its glory and once again this world has a generation of critical thinking unbrainwashed humans that interact with their knowledge rather then just consume. This trend can not go fast enough and I wish TV a painful death all around. It will be interesting to see all the advertisers run with their money - getting much cheaper adverts on the Internet - adverts that are much cheaper to produce then high gloss tv stuff - adverts that can link to a store with a mouseclick so the advertisers can take out the middle man as well - all good for advertisment - so now with all this money gone from TV how will private TV stations stay afloat? The production will get even cheaper then they are already the content even worse the viewers even fewer and soon it leads to self extinction. Interesting times ahead for sure. I would not like to be a TV station boss making decissions right now.


http://www.heise.de/newsticker/meldung/60849 (german)

30.05.05

Controlled Media In Iraq

River from Baghdad Burning has a nice first hand view that now after the heavy bombs have been dropped on the Iraqis the softer bombs are all over the place. The TV landscape has changed in that once selfgovernent country. And all that is on TV is sitcoms and stupid American showformats - completely dispatched from the current life of Iraqies. Its a bombardment of the mind. It seems the American Government wants to make the Iraqis as stupid as their own couch potato citizens. It also seems the Iraqis are not following along as their normal life seems thousand times more interesting then what the Americans find exciting in their boring white suburban neighborhood lifes. Read the very interesting Iraqi view on the state of TV in Democratized Arabia from River.

18.05.05

Blogs believe the hype?

An informative article over at ArsTechnica informs us that blogs are mostly just repeating stories from Mainstream media and that there is not much original content. Blogs seem to work as amplifier for bigger stories rather then giving new insights and more thoughts. I kind of agree but also disagree with that observation. Firstly of course most of the blogs out there report on stories that the blog author read or saw somewhere else. Most blog authors do blog writing as a part time hobby - a hobby that can take lots of time away already with just repeating stories. Still those blog authors are filtering stories from their own subjective which is in itself a form of journalism - read a lot of columns in newpapers and you see that this form has been in "mainstream" media all along and is apriciated to see different opinions on different topics. Another thing is that its just not true that ALL bloggers just repeat "old media" stories in a new way. There is so much original creative content out there in the blogosphere its simply short from totally amazing. Try a search for any random topic you might think of and there is at least one blog out there that has informative information that you don´t find anywhere else all nicely ordered in blog format. Also there are first hand reports for news stories - read the bagdhad burning blog and you see a good example of this. So generally the critique from arstechnica is accepted to a certain degree but it needs to be seen from all angles and for that blogs do shape all media today more then any other "new media" form has in the past 10 years.
Now the vlogs are coming in and it seems they are even more "independent" from mainstream media - mostly due to copyright reasons - then the written blogs. They are totally creative and have 90% pure original content. Maybe the copyright laws are not bad after all sparking a truly free media revolution by prohibiting taking over content from the media powerhouses that control public perception?

17.05.05

The internet(tv)network

Via Slashdot comes a link to an article in the Seattle Times that takes about the new "TV Stations" that are solely virtual and only airing in the internet. Things like ourmedia.org, DaveTV, Open Media Network and hundrets of video blogs seem slowly establish themself as a new kind of media on the blog - down to earth and uncontrolled. Lets hope it continues

16.05.05

How does Creative Commons work - a movie for the copyleft beginners

Wow. Creative Commons has an educational video on their website. I love educational movies that are fun to watch and educate... If they educate about copyleft and creative commons the better. See one of the best ones yet - fast stylish funny educational - on lawrence lessigs blog.

http://www.lessig.org/blog/archives/ccau.mov

14.05.05

The Guarding get the facts wrong

I love to correct big media and seeing that they make such obvious mistakes in real trivial articles that just would have taken another source to confirm "facts" or a little wikipedia search makes you wonder just how many mistakes there are in the bigger articles with more serious content - content that changes world perception:

The Guardian Web Edition writes in an article about Berlin Taxi Drivers Learning English for Football World Cup 2006:

Mr Dörendahl grew up in communist East Germany, where English was not taught.

Well growing up in East-Germany myself I can not disagree more. Not only was english taught but it was a requirement next to russian. Maybe the teaching was not as good because most of the teacher were not allowed to enter a country that natively spoke english - but it was there nonetheless. If you dropped out after 10 years of school then you might not have gotten any english teachings but that does not mean that "kommunist east germany never had any english teaching in school" - this sentence is not only wrong but implies bad things about all things east german - not all was bad. And seeing kapitalistik media implying things like this makes you wonder what else they are implying all the time subconsciously.

Other source then me:
the MDR DDR Lexicon (german)

Lexipda about East German School System

10.05.05

Josh Leo about the truth of VideoBlogging

Watching some ANT feeds today I came across one of the most significant VideoBloggingEntries I have yet seen. Josh Leo is telling his very personal feelings about vlogging and how he sees himself inside the vlogging community. He goes on to tell the world why he thinks videoblogging makes a difference - why he hopes that videoblogging will stay away from the big media kind of stuff you see on TV. If you think about getting rich and famous in video blogging this is the entry to get you back down to earth - where video blogs truly belong to.
I can not agree with him more - every point he makes resonates with my feeling about all of this. Now Josh you might be the Cool Guy for me does this mean I have to stop watch your videos?

http://joshleo.blogspot.com/2005/04/vlog-on-vlog.html

20.04.05

Orwell rolls in his grave

A very interesting documentary concerning the concentration of power in american massmedia is available for watching at the information clearing house. A little biased as Michael Moores films it tries to shed light on the development of the Massmedia in the US and the fabricated storytelling of the "news" in newspapers, radio and tv. It shows the connection of media with politics and has interviews with News Editors from twenty years ago. It sure is worth watching if you are concerned about free opinions in the world.

You can view the real bad encoded two hour realvideo stream here:

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article8560.htm (part 1)
http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article8561.htm (part 2)

29.03.05

ANT´s not Television

If you are frequent to this blog you heard my multiple ramblings on how bad i think television is for the population on the planet. Actually I did something I rarely do - criticize without having a handy solution. The world will breath again the solution is here and its even better then I ever thought as it combines two of the three coolest web-technologies and puts it in an interface as easy to use as a TV box. The ANT is here and their slogan is "ANT´s not television". The slogan is a ripoff from "GNU´s not Linux" and could not be better suited. ANT gives you a nice clean interface as easy to use as the Quicktime Player and a TV set fused together.
The cool thing: its actually nothing more then an RSS feed reader. Yes this little "rss feed" or "xml feed" or "atom feed" you see on the right of many blogs and more and more newssites is used to give you an almost TV like experience. You alter the RSS feed a little (for example in movable type you put <$MTEntryRelEnclosures$> in the RSS 2.0 feed template) and then put in a rel="enclosure" in between your link to the movie you post and from that the ANT filters out the movies. You subscribe to the feed through ANT and click on refresh and there you go. You just watch the movies as they come in. You can refresh all of your subscribed feeds during the night and watch true Blog TV in the morning. You have to try it out to see how cool and easy this is.
After you download ANT you have some pre-installed feeds in there. You can just go to add to add another feed like the one for my vj-blog (copy link).
This programs brings you the closest to TV experience on the web while at the same time beeing MILES away from beeing TV as this is truly giving everyone the right to be a publisher of their own TV channel - on demand and fast :)

ANT´s not Television

If you are frequent to this blog you heard my multiple ramblings on how bad i think television is for the population on the planet. Actually I did something I rarely do - criticize without having a handy solution. The world will breath again the solution is here and its even better then I ever thought as it combines two of the three coolest web-technologies and puts it in an interface as easy to use as a TV box. The ANT is here and their slogan is "ANT´s not television". The slogan is a ripoff from "GNU´s not Linux" and could not be better suited. ANT gives you a nice clean interface as easy to use as the Quicktime Player and a TV set fused together.
The cool thing: its actually nothing more then an RSS feed reader. Yes this little "rss feed" or "xml feed" or "atom feed" you see on the right of many blogs and more and more newssites is used to give you an almost TV like experience. You alter the RSS feed a little (for example in movable type you put <$MTEntryRelEnclosures$> in the RSS 2.0 feed template) and then put in a rel="enclosure" in between your link to the movie you post and from that the ANT filters out the movies. You subscribe to the feed through ANT and click on refresh and there you go. You just watch the movies as they come in. You can refresh all of your subscribed feeds during the night and watch true Blog TV in the morning. You have to try it out to see how cool and easy this is.
After you download ANT you have some pre-installed feeds in there. You can just go to add to add another feed like the one for my vj-blog (copy link).
This programs brings you the closest to TV experience on the web while at the same time beeing MILES away from beeing TV as this is truly giving everyone the right to be a publisher of their own TV channel - on demand and fast :)

19.03.05

Revolution in the Digital Rights Management Age - Code v.2

One of the lone wolfs fighting for a free open digital culture - next to Linus Torwald - is Lawrence Lessig. He is one of the idea founders behind Creative commons and most free copy rights management ideas that we are seeing today are based on his book Code and Other Laws of Cyberspace from 1999. Now he is doing an update to this book as we are in the next century and he does this by - very 21st century style - opening up a wiki and let everyone interested in copyrights of the digital age take part in writing the book. The whole wiki is published under - of course - a special Creative Common Wiki License (beta) and all money he makes from selling the book will go to the Creative Commons Foundation. Sounds all good and I hope he makes again a big impact on revolutionizing the current copyright system.
I would like to point out that most artistic work comming out of the Prototypen - like the music from Klartext or all of our blogs or my code releases - are under some form of Creative Common or GPL licenses and the spirit is share alike and mention us. I ultimately think that this is the only way to a free culture with a free art and knowledge exchange. We want to move forward and not go back to the middle ages were all information and creativity was controlled by one entity. Back then it was the church today its the corporations (and to some part the corporate puppet governments).

TV - The falling star.

From time to time I get across articles that talk about the state of the once beloved lead medium TV. All of the articles that talk about TV in general forecast a dark shadowy future. So does todays article on telepolis (german). It tries to de-sect the mythos that TV is the guidance media of our times and compares it to the other medias that have had a much deeper impact on society and still have (printed word). The article fails on one major point: it argues that TV might not be heavily infulencing society. I think that everyone who knows someone who watches TV will say this is simply not true. The attention grabbing medium has wasted so much time of so many individuals that its impact on society can not be downplayed for that reason alone. Also the "slim trendy beautiful" generation that is now in its mid 20s to mid 30s was influenced by TV - because the TV was portraying this culture of all things must be beautiful trendy and chic. Without a TV picture most girls wouldn´t know that they have to be slim to be accepted or boys know how to move to the latest hihop dance rythms. The good thing about all this is that I see more and more people hating TV leaving it off most of the time mostly because of VERY shitty content that gets worse by the day. The heise article states that the bad quality is because that quotas are the only way to messure the "quality" of a TV program and to crank out high numbers of people you have to be as broad as possible. Now if I follow that thought I think the mass population is doing anything to make TV as relevant as any other medium and loose its leadership status among print and radio and internet. So people continue watch stupid soaps and when you are bored throw away the TV all together - then you have contributed to the media revolution and have helped future generations not becoming corporate influenced couch potatoes ....

15.03.05

SPAM WAR - Online Poker

Just read on Slashdot that the bloggers are out to fight the blog spam by googlebombing certain search terms like Online Poker and redirecting them to the special Wikipedia site dedicated to online poker. Now this might seem unfair for google but it does help awareness of the blog spam problem which everyone who has a blog seems to fight and at the same time raise awareness for the great Wikipedia project. Now I feel better and hope those spammers go away. Online Poker as words or part of URL is banned in my comments btw. At the moment the term Online Poker ranks 3rd in google.com

9.03.05

Are Blogger Journalists?

This questions goes around the blogs and press these days and I have a few thoughts that I would like to share in the hope they may be heard.
I personally have no good writing skills - neither in english nor in german - I have always had bad grades in school when it came to literature and writing. But I have opinions, and I have knowledge that some might not have and seek. I have information regarding me and my surrounding that might be interesting to others as those are things that others do not have access to - either because they are on a totally different planetary location or they do not know the same persons.
So for me a blog is to share my knowledge and share my information (as much as I legally can) and share my thoughts to give a piece of foundation to an understanding of the world races and ultimately for peace...
So are blogger journalists? Should they be granted the same rights as journalists? I think the questions should be turned around. Why are there people called journalists having more rights to obtain information then a normal citizen. Why can no normal citizen walk in a "press conference" and ask question that they think personally affects them? Why can no normal citizen request information that they think they have a valid concern about. Things that a normal journalist would never think of because it does not affect them personally?
My point is: every person on this planet should have the same access to all information available - be it a professional journalist who can write beautiful sentences or a common man who just writes about its gut feelings. I think the real revolution is the media revolution and only if everyone has the same unrestricted access and the same possibilities to write then we can talk about a free press. The second point always seemed the hardest. How can you give a lot of people an international voice that has the same outreach as tradtional media like TV. That point is now mute with the advent of blogging and the internet. Now we need to give us all the same voice legally. Now we have to ask for unrestricted access to all information for everybody only if we get this we will have true personal unbiased freedom of speech and freedom of thought (which is even more important). Only then we will have the power to make people wake up from their consume driven slavery....

5.03.05

Personalized Radio

Via kluge.de come a link to to a very interesting radio concept website. LAST.FM is a way to make a personalized radio station that plays only your music. In return you can listen to radio stations that are near in taste with yours. You put together a playlist with your favorite songs (hey you can even block songs that will never appear to be even accidentely selected by you) then you hit play and it plays them. The website then figures out who else has a similar taste in music and offers to listen to their personized tracks. Interesting concept.

19.01.05

rel="nofollow" <- death to blogging?

Comment spam is something every blog owner hates as much as the neighboring dogs. We here at prototypen had very bad months last year with about 1000 comment spam messages per day. We took the matter seriously as it was really disrupting our blogs. Since we use a free old version of Six Aparts Movable Type we have not much tools available to us to fight the spam. In the beginning the blacklisting worked out quite well but with the massive onslaughter of comment spams the mt-blacklist broke down before our eyes, its database - full of phrases to look for- made the hosting computer go down to its knees - it seemed - processing mt-blacklists database with waiting times up to 10 minutes for a message delete page to load. So that was not the best way around to do this. What was always clear is that we wanted the comments open to everyone with the least amount of hassle for serious poster to let the voices be heard.
We have now a custom coded solution to the problem - a problem that came because of the hegemony of Movable Type in about 90% of all blogs active on the net. it must have been easy for the spammers to use bots given that the comment spam script is searchable with google and is easily executed externally outside of MT. Anyway our spam problem went away to 99% with some manual spammer coming across now and then but those can be deleted by hand rather easily. Our custom solution can not be applied to all blogs out there (and I already see the day that it gets "broken") and the comment spamming got so utterly bad that googles search algorithm freaked out and you get so many spams on top of so many search terms that this threatens to make google and other search engines unusable.
So they all United in Peace to free the world of the uterly bad. Google, MSN, Yahoo!, Manilla, Six Apart, Wordpress, Flickr, Blogger, Livejournal, Buzznet, Blojsom, Blosxom etc have all joined the efford and are now introducing a new tag to the html header. The syntax is very very easy just type rel="nofollow" and all links on the corresponding page are not attributed to the search engines page ranking anymore.
Great way to get rid of the problem BUT this effectively gives the spam war a clear long term winner - and the winner are the spammers because they successfully harmed our basis democratic blogoshpere that was using comments and blogs to express opinion. This interblog page ranking democracy is seriously crippled with this as now only links that the author of a blog posts are considered worthy and all disagreement or enhancements inside the blogs comment that gets funded with links is out of the loop and will not be considered worthy by Google and Microsoft. Needless to say that we will NOT incorporate this system - at least not as long as our hack works.
That gives room for a personal "conspiracy theory" of mine. The spammers are government funded agents that try everything they can to destabilise the free internet as we know it so the evil governments of the world can step in and - together with their corporate buddies - establish law and order slowly eating away the freedom and voices from otherwise powerless individuals around the world. The more of the "spam links" you click and there are not even corresponding pages on the other side the more this conspiracy makes sense and in a way it seems to be succeeding very nicely. Just put some more "antispamlaws" in place and control the internet a little more every day. Its happening and its creepy.
Don´t understand me wrong. I hate spam - I hate it A LOT but its better to stand up to the spam then crippling and jailing the net as I have learned to love it - free and anarchic - and spam is part of this anarchy side of things - the internet is not the clean shopping mall in the suburb and I hope it will never become such a boring place of mass consumption.

14.12.04

Swarmstreaming - Bittorrent for Linear Media

The inventors of swarming - the underlaying concept of Bittorrent a form of distributed file sharing (in its good sense) - have been at it again. This time they look at how you could use the randomized swarming technic to get a mediafile to play even if it has not downloaded yet completely. Swarmstreaming might be what I have been waiting for. Peercast seems to be quite dead lately. The last release left only a promise for distributed media content streaming. Now with the advent of Swarmstreaming things might change. If this new technology is holding what is promised then we will be able to stream video content over a shared distribution network. In our community alone are at least 15 DSL connection - with that we are able to stream a very very good quality TV stream.
Now someone has to make this whitepaper into a working applications. Good to know that a lot of people actually care about shared streaming content distribution.
Read all all about the whitepaper here

11.12.04

Podcasting - Revolution of Mobile Radio

I do not own an iPod - you know I still wait for the movie functionality that might never come (oh no do not point me to this iPodPhotoHack that allows you to "play" movies by turning the dial in 25fps fashion to some background music) and at current price I rather by two 250Gb harddrives then one 40GB that won´t even hold a tenth of an actual movie project. Because of my neglectance in all subjects surrounding the iPod I have also overlooked one cool development: Podcasting. Today I stumbled across an article in the USA today online publication that talks about this new phenomenon. What is it? A blend between an RSS feed, a radiostation and a shared playlist.
Basically you download a a software like ipodderx and subscribe to a couple of Podcast "radiostations" that you like. Now everytime a new version of the Radiofeed becomes available it will upload automatically onto your iPod. So its like Radio on demand surely a killer application for the audio producing crowd - it makes it easy to transform a blog to a radiostation especially usefull for bands or the like to do promotion with their own radio show.
For me now just an iPod with Video has to surface and Podcasting capable of doing video as well and I can transmit my own Television on demand... Oh dreams...

For a list of Podcasts you can go to sites like http://ipodder.org/ or http://podcast.net/

6.12.04

Internet usage up TV viewing down

I try to track articles that foresee what I call "the decline of the braindead couch potato civilization". While the earlier articles on the matter "TV viewing down internet usage up" where all studies and statistics from the US – today came one in from good ol Europe. BBC is reporting that the adaption of broadband is up between 33% (Germany) to 120%(Italy) over the previous year. In the same study 40% of all broadband using households say that they are spending way less time in front of the TV.

"Year-on-year we are continuing to see a seismic shift in where, when and how Europe's population consume media for information and entertainment and this has big implications for TV, newspaper and radio," said Jupiter Research analyst Olivier Beauvillian.

That is 20 Million more people in Europe watching less TV.

11.10.04

Radio Re!Volt

The maximum transmission power a person can have in the US without breaking the law is one Watt. That is enough to transmit a radio program to the people in one living block in bigger city. The usual transmission rate of a commercial radio station is 100.000 Watt. What gives? If you hand out 100.000 radio transmitters to 100.000 people in one city you theoretically reach the same audience without being tied to FCC regulations or monopolistic powers. That is what the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis thought. They started radio revolt to give the power back to the individuals. On their website is a map where you can see how many transmitters are already in the city (and where). Sounds like a great idea for individual freedom of unregulated speech. Great job!

7.10.04

The longer you surfe the less you watch TV

Something the internet diehards do know themself but something that needs to be spelled out to the management of TV stations Telekom companies: Sooner or later the web WILL take over TV as a mass medium. There are numerous studies out there showing a decrease of overall TV watching time and an increase in Internet use. Those two yes are intertwined. A recent study shows the dramatic turn this is taking.

read it over at ars technica: http://arstechnica.com/news.ars/post/20041006-4279.html

6.10.04

Peercast - Multicasting away

Peercast catched my attention some time ago. Its an open source application (GNU) that enables peer to peer streaming. Yes the bittorrent/Gnutella way of streaming. Its simple: You make an Icecast/Shoutcast compatible stream and use peercast as relay. Then someone listens to your stream and ad hoc you have another relay to your stream. The more users listening the more relays available and in the end you are able to send out ONE good stream (over lousy DSl 128k) and all people out there get the good quality.
There is now a mac version available and its so easy that you can listen instantly (and relaying - always!). There is no need for big ass server boxes to control your own radio stations.
And it does video too but the problem only NVS or WMV (that is crappy windows media). No RTSP stream yet (real/quicktime) but they are planning on releasing a rtsp capable version soon.
The concept is great, since the internet companies can not figure out how to implement multicast on a grand scale this could come to the home TV network stations owners saviour.

http://www.peercast.org/

1.10.04

FM Motor - finally a true independent radio station for germany?

Tim Renner ones the head of Universal Music in Germany tries to get attention to a new projekt - namely getting a Radio Station that is independent from the majors. Mr. Renner was fired by the US heads of Universal because he was to enthusiastic with the Berlin Underground Bands and Independent Labels, something a US major does not like to see.
Now he fires back - or at least tries because the frequency 106,8 for which he applied for FM Motor his independent radio show has not yet been assigned to him. Mr. Renner has put a lot "famous" underground musicians of mostly the Berlin scene around him and has been transmitting on a temporary frequency for the Berlin Popkomm that is currently under the way.
With the new radio he tries to set a countermeasure to the failing copyright protectionism of the majors (something he already understood when he was at Universal) and wants to promote the german and international independent scene. We wish him good look with this endeavor but personally I fear that the majors have to much power (on the money side) to crush such a thing as they have done with all independent radio station in the US.

More Info: http://www.heise.de/tp/deutsch/inhalt/musik/18459/1.html

Must have AntiAmerikanPropaganda

One of the nicest crafted movies in a long time that talks about the project "American Century" has come to my notion. Its a must to look at the blend of 2000 style visuals with an appearance that reminds you of old film and the deep message within with a very nice use of graphical language throughout. Have a look.

http://www.knife-party.net/movs/barry.mov

24.09.04

Train you own anti data collector bot

A great little site I happened to wander across today is called "maschinen esses sich selber auf" (machines will eat itself). And its simply such a great idea that I want to help promote the thing. To make it short: You tell a little bot program (a program that works by itself) a website that takes personal data (mostly all do this for profit and to save you adress and later sell it or make you "genuine offers", they all seem to want to have the biggest archive of adresses with the most information about the individuals). That is A LOT OF WEBSITES today. Then the bot (and the other 1000+ bots on the side) visits this website and put in its fake personal data, swamping the database with unusable data streams that to clean takes to much times and renders a whole database totally useless. Well thats the ambiguous plan. Right now the bots are hungry they have not enough websites to eat, because that needs to be fed to them so they do not cause to much traffic running through the pages looking for the "forms" of the big datacenters.
Its a computer against computer war. And I want you to be on the side of the bots against mega databases (and mega corporations behind them). Help them - feed them.

machines will eat itself

13.03.04

Broadcast Flag

While I freed myself from the TV Drug a year ago the media giants doing everything to release the remaining lemmings out into the wild by introducing gadget that will wake them up sooner or later. While the "Broadcast Flag" was passed noone noticed the real deep down problem with a chip inside your TV that controls what you can record, what your TV will output or - and the chip is capable of this - what your TV will let you watch.
This is indeed all interest of the viewer who will then not be able to watch the late braking news on the indy channel and instead is liberated to watch the 100th series of Buffy saving the world.
But the real problemetic thing is that this is a further step to limit the use of media technology. I am already hampered with not being able to route analog video through my Sony Camera "due to ensure that copyright content is protected" as the manual for the camera states. What Hollywood really wants to do is putting the devil back to where he was, but the devil is not only the copying user on the internet, the devil is as well the independent media advocate, the indy film makers, the guy who films a protest making civil rights problems in modern western society visible. All of those that are not brainwashed to death, those not happy with the status quo. It will be increasingly difficult in the future to make your own movies even though the technology should make it more easy today. Its all not so bad right now but all sign are pointing evil. Trusted computing anyone? Oh yeah it will protect us from spam and viruses - what those are initiated spam and viruses are the big companies trying to get a hold on the internet?

10.03.04

TV on decline again - still

CNN - mother of all evil - reports that the TV watching habit of the most profitable demographic group - young men aged between 18 and 34 - is going down due to playing video games at prime time. How dare they, they rather should be getting brainwashed by the governments and stupid soap operas. No they are might even get more intelligent now. Bad news for one to many. Good news for common sense.

5.03.04

Biggest Marketing of all time or just good timing?

Sometimes I ask myself how bad this world really is. How much of the information I get daily is polluted by big companies wanting nothing more then profit. What of the knowledge that feeds into my brain is for real. Last week there were multiple reports in multiple online magazines that the end of the world might be near (nothing new of course) because of the ice-caps melting (also nothing very new) because the gulf stream will stop to flow and the whole of the northern hemisphere will turn into Siberia. That "knowledge" report came allegedly straight from the horses mouth - deep inside the Pentagon and was to change the presidents mind on air pollution and all the bad things happen to our environment (you know about them I am sure).
Today then I head over to my 3d feed and there they post a link to trailer of a 20th century fox (say big bad ass hollywood) production called "The Day After".
Well well well. As said before either good timing or best guerrilla marketing for a long time. Watch it and be astounded how close the story fits to the mentioned Pentagon paper. Scary very scary (and no not because the end of the world is near, maybe such a scenario would actually clean up the world from the real evil of our lifetime, and yes I love snow)


http://www.apple.com/trailers/fox/dayaftertomorrow/trailer/large.html

29.01.04

The MassMedia and the chances for a PersonalBloggerSociety

mediaterrorist.jpgI need to get something out of my head.
1 year ago I abondend TV. I have not read much newspapers before and look an any piece of "news" or "information" with a sceptical eye. I try to balance my view as much as I can by reading extreme right views extreme left views, center views, philosophical views and so on. The more independed I have grown from the One to Many communications the more I realized that there is a mass scale brainwashing going that robs the average citizen of their will. You know Brave New World kind of Soma Drug but the drug is the media. I know some people outright addicted by TV. They can not sit in my room for more then 30 minutes without demanding that I should get a satellite receiver. When I tell them that I do not want to watch TV anymore I get a blank stare of disbelieve. They are so addicted they can think of anything else then watching TV. I was addicted to it as well, in my younger years I was hanging out in front of it for 4 hours a day and couldn´t move on. When they shut off analog transmission it felt like they took away a drug. Now after one year I have no urge to watch TV anymore. Even the thought of it makes me shudder with all that wasted time. Yes there are "information" on TV that might be good but its soooo rare its not worth waiting for, and if you believe a 30 minute science broadcast is helping you understand the world I have to say: No. Its just one way the media is making even those who are smart and interested in the world also an addict. They reach out to everyone. Interestingly the media is controlling the public mind and TV is on its forefront. Of course the media will feature those politicians that will not do any regulations on them. Of course the media will invest big bugs in politicians that do not wake up the population. Ones the population woke up from the druggy dreams they would understand that there is another life out there. Something refreshing. Right now I would say that the One to Many traditional media (and I take the newspapers and magazin in this as well as with most of their coverage it aims at the same direction -> earning money, getting readers, brainwashing them making them addicts - left and right media the same in this regard) is in total control in the "western civilized world" what they believe is right will be going on. The politicians in charge are puppets of the media, because if something does not go according to their plan they will just unleash a hate campaign. Now who is really in charge of the media? Its a few people, a handfull that controls the big stations and newspapers and let me assure you they are talking on the phone at least ones a month on how to keep the addiction level of the mass population.
Now the only chance to get out of it is the net. Of course the media is starting to pollute it with their views and its disgusting to see that. The refreshing side of it is that blogs springing up everywhere who try to deal with their own view on the world. Indeed its something the big bosses will not understand fast enough. Human beings are about interacting. Human beings want to broadcast. They want to tell others what is going on around them. What their problems are what their dreams are what they see as a bright and positive future for them self. They do not want to be dictated what they ought to think.
The problem is that too many are already brainwashed. People watching TV for 50 years now. The young to old people ratio is tipping toward the older like my grandparents whos TV is on 12 hours a day. Or my parents whos TV is on 4 hours a day. I predict that there will be a big deep rip through society. The ones that woke up from the addiction and feel like the have slept their whole live and now want to change something and the others who will stay addicted until the end. The problem is that there is no chance that majority will wake up. The older people will likely not adapt to the nets many to many communication anymore. There are not enough young kids coming after that they would form a majority. This will be THE big issue of the next years and the rip will get deeper and deeper as further we will go down the timeline. The media will control the hords of druggies who will denounce everything the free minded people will say or do. It will be not long down the line until we are labelled "terrorists". And I have to say YES I AM A MEDIATERRORIST. DEATH TO TV.

Where do you stand my friend?