December 31, 2008

Happy New Year - FoE3 videos available

I just wanted to take a quick break from the Christmas/New Year's festivities to let you know the videos from November's third annual Futures of Entertainment conference have been put up online.

We took a little more time getting the videos up this year as we plan to push them out across a broader range of video-sharing platforms than we have before. For the moment, they are available from MIT's TechTV site. You can watch, comment on, and embed the videos from this site. In the coming weeks we will put them up on a range of other sites across the Internet.

Happy New Year everyone, from all of us here at C3; 2008 was a stimulating year, and we're looking forward to an equally provoking 2009.

December 6, 2008

Product Placement: A Necessary Evil?

I love my DVR for a lot of reasons, but mostly because it allows me to watch more TV and fewer commercials. Using my DVR to fast-forward through commercials turns a 30-minute sitcom into a 22-minute sitcom. Those extra 8 minutes mean I can watch four sitcoms in the time it used to take to watch three. And all without having to sit through a single ad.

I scanned through all the commercials during the November 6 episode of NBC's My Name is Earl, but I still had to watch an advertisement. An entire story line in the episode centers on Joy's (Jaime Pressly) desire for a necklace designed by Jane Seymour and sold at Kay Jewelers. Joy sees the necklace in a television commercial and embarks on a ridiculous quest--involving rockets-- to raise the money necessary to purchase it. Zany antics ensue, and Joy is eventually rewarded when her husband presents her with an "Open Hearts" necklace at the end of the episode.

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December 5, 2008

Revoking Spreadable Media: Soulja Boy take-down notices

Last week, just in time for the holiday season, CMS colleague Kevin Driscoll received a Youtube DMCA take-down notice for Crank Dat Roflcon (video viewable here on Fred Benenson's blog). Crank Dat Roflcon was part of the Internet Conference held at MIT last year in conjunction with Harvard Free Culture and the Berkman Center, as well as the follow-up to our own CMS Soulja Boy project, Crank Dat MIT with free software guru Richard Stallman.

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December 3, 2008

"The Canon" Goes 2.0

I've always had a love/hate relationship with the Criterion Collection, the same goes for the lesser known blog, The Auteurs, which has now grown into a full fledged site and recently developed a partnership with Criterion and with Celluloid Dreams. This post is probably a bit excessive on both extremes. On one hand, I can't help but drool every time I visit the Criterion site, on the other, I usually can't afford their DVDs, and mostly I'm disturbed by the notion that someone out there is defining "the canon". It's unfair, I know someone has to do it in order to restore and make available all those wonderful films, but this process of inclusion/exclusion is still problematic. So, while it extends the life (and in some cases resuscitates) many films, it also ghettoizes them into this fabricated Olympus of the cinema.

Having said all this, I am very happy to announce that Criterion has discovered Web 2.0, and is cautiously entering this domain. You can now rent Criterion movies on their site for $5 that count towards the DVD should you decide to purchase it, but more importantly, through their partnership with The Auteurs they provide a monthly selection of free movies streams under the Festival section. This month we can enjoy the "cruel stories of youth", including Sweetie and Lord of the Flies.

Continue reading ""The Canon" Goes 2.0" »

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