Film

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My week from Monday 23 to Sunday 29 April 2012 covered the entire continent from Sydney to Perth and (at least later today) back again.

That’s Perth in the photo, with the Swan River just visible between the apartment buildings of East Perth. The photo was taken with my bashed-up HTC Desire phone and processed through Instagram.

Heck, if Zuckerberg reckons it’s worth a billion dollars I might as well have a look, right?

I’ll comment on Instagram itself later, and figure out a better way to integrate the photos into this website. Meanwhile, here’s a gallery of my Instagram photos, updated automatically.

And now on with the show…

Podcasts

  • Patch Monday episode 135, “iiNet wards off AFACT, but what next?” A summary of the High Court’s decision in Roadshow Films and others versus iiNet Limited, the initial reactions, and a wide-ranging discussion with Dr Rebecca Giblin, a copyright academic and geek from Monash University’s law school, who literally wrote the book on this subject: Code Wars: 10 Years of P2P Software Litigation. Keywords for the other things we mention are SOPA/PIPA, peer-to-peer production,

Articles

Media Appearances

Corporate Largesse

  • I wasn’t paid to present at DigitalMe, they did cover travel from Sydney to Perth and one night’s accommodation at Aarons Hotel including breakfast. Wine by Brad provided booze for the welcome drinks, as well as a bottle to take home. Food was supplied by Sorrento Restaurant, Northbridge.

The Week Ahead

A busy week of writing lies ahead, including a story for CSO Online and my presentation for the Saasu Cloud Conference the following week. I’ll also continue work on the feature story I’m writing for ZDNet Australia

I believe I’ll be back in Wentworth Falls for most of the week, but this could change at short notice. The Dopplr widget on the left-hand side of every page of my website is usually updated within an hour of plans changing, so always check there first — but bear in mind it has odd ideas of what day it is.

Elsewhere

Most of my day-to-day observations are on my high-volume Twitter stream, and random photos and other observations turn up on my Posterous stream (or they used to before my phone camera got a bit too scratched up). The photos also appear on Flickr, where I eventually add geolocation data and tags.

The big internet-related story in Australia today was the High Court’s decision in the so-called #iiTrial. I wrote the lead story in Crikey — read that now for the facts and my analysis — and just spoke about it on ABC 702 Sydney.

The High Court decided, as outlined in its summary [PDF], that internet service provider iiNet was not responsible for the copyright-infringing acts of its customers. But as explained in their full decision, that decision was based on “all the facts of the case”. That is, things might have turned out differently had the Australian Federation Against Copyright Theft (AFACT) or iiNet handled things differently. We’ll never know.

Since I wrote for Crikey, my ZDNet Australia colleague Josh Taylor has been tracking the reactions. I daresay there’ll be more to come across the weekend.

Now when I spoke to the ABC’s Richard Glover just after the 4pm news this afternoon — that’s the audio you’ll hear here — the scene was set first by Glover’s slightly-misleading introduction involving pubs and then AFACT’s managing director Neil Gane. So I was working within that framing. I’m not sure how well I did.

Play

Obviously time was limited. Had I had more time to speak, I would have said:

  • We do keep talking about the experience of the music industry, but that’s because they’re further down the path of replacing traditional distribution mechanisms with the internet. It might be worth the film and TV industries having a look at that and seeing what they can learn, rather than just being in denial.
  • Yes, the economics of making a big blockbuster movie are very different from making a music album. But the film industry decided to take the blockbuster path with all the expensive hangers-on that that business model entails. No-one is forcing them to do it that way.
  • With distribution costs tending to zero, those who run the traditional distribution models need one heck of a lot better argument to justify the amount of money they charge than “Oh no, it’s all different now”.
  • They talk about the industry being in decline, but that’s because they only count themselves. As a totality, people probably spend more on entertainment than they ever have done. It’s like the Myer and David Jones and Harvey Norman stores whinging about the decline of retail. No, retail overall is doing just fine. The bit that’s failing is them — the people doing things the same old way and not adapting to the change.
  • No business model has a right to exist. Maybe the age of big movies and big TV productions is over. It wouldn’t be the first time a form of entertainment had died because it was no longer viable, and it wouldn’t be the last.

The audio is of course ©2012 Australian Broadcasting Corporation, but as usual I’m posting it here as an archive.

Stilgherrian’s links for 11 March 2009 through 18 March 2009, posted after considerable delay in some cases:

Given that mere popularity doesn’t reflect quality, here’s my personal selection of my best, timeless posts for 2008. Happy reading!

Stilgherrian’s links for 21 November 2008 through 22 November 2008, after being tickled with a feather duster:

  • Danger Room Debrief: How to do Defense, When the Money’s Gone | Danger Room from Wired.com: “The current global economic and financial meltdown may yet become something worse: a protracted global depression. As with the last century’s Depression, which spawned fascism and WWII, it could recast the world at a fundamental level. As such, it may soon represent our biggest security challenge in over 50 years.”
  • The Power of Nightmares | YouTube: The 2.5-minute introduction to The Power of Nightmares, to give you a flavour of the full 3-hour documentary series.
  • The Power Of Nightmares (DVD) | Internet Archive: This film explores the origins in the 1940s and 50s of Islamic Fundamentalism in the Middle East, and Neoconservatism in America, parallels between these movements, and their effect on the world today: “Both [the Islamists and Neoconservatives] were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world. And both had a very similar explanation for what caused that failure. These two groups have changed the world, but not in the way that either intended. Together, they created today’s nightmare vision of a secret organized evil that threatens the world, a fantasy that politicians then found restored their power and authority in a disillusioned age. And those with the darkest fears became the most powerful.” The full DVD image is free to download.
  • Irrelevant Al Qaeda | Jon Taplin’s Blog: Is it time to declare Al Qaeda irrelevant and downgrade the War on Terror a police action that’s just mopping up the stragglers?
  • Mother Earth Mother Board | Wired 4.12: A massive 1993 feature article in which Neal Stephenson toured six countries following the roll-out of fibre optic cables. It introduced me to his writing and it remains an excellent read today.
  • The End | Flickr: A collection of classic “The End” title cards from a wide variety of films.
  • Fiscal Conservative vs. Tax & Spend Liberal | Be the signal: Another variation of an infographic pointing out that the Republicans don’t have the best track record for the US economy.
  • Opinion graph | Junk Charts: On average, the US stock market does much better under Democrat Presidents than Republicans, as this graph shows.
  • How Twittering Critics Brought Down Motrin Mom Campaign | Advertising Age: A groundswell of opinion on Twitter caused Johnson & Johnson to pull an adverting campaign.
  • Thesis Theme for WordPress | DIY Themes: A high-quality but not-free theme framework for WordPress. While I currently use the free Tarski theme for my website maybe this is worth a look at some point.
  • NSW Parliamentary Research: Mandatory ISP filtering is not what it seems | Internet Industry Association: Research by the NSW Parliamentary Library shows that Senator Conroy’s claims about other nations’ compulsory Internet censorship regimes are wrong.
  • Kerr's curse | ABC Unleashed: If nothing else, I love this essay for the phrase “cardboard cutout think tanks”. But there are many other reasons to like it.
  • Internet Censorship and the Irukandji Jellyfish | First Dog on the Moon: Only First Dog on the Moon could successfully combine Senator Conroy’s Internet censorship plan and jellyfish in one cartoon.
  • PG Nation | ABC Unleashed: An interesting essay about the neo-wowserism of the Rudd government.
  • Europa Film Treasures: An archive of European cinematographic treasures. It looks like there’s a lot of material here.
  • The Trojan Horse | Business Spectator: “The current government policy of forcing ISPs to offer their customers a so-called ‘clean feed’ has the overt intention of helping parents to protect their kids while surfing the Internet. It is, we are told, all about child protection. However, the use of content filtering to make the Internet ‘safer’ for kids is already available, to the extent that any statistically significant real demand exists to solve it.”
  • Failing hard drive sounds | Datacent: A collection of the sounds made by dying hard disc drives. Yes, they can be used in music provided you contact these guys first.
  • 19-year-old Commits Suicide on Justin.tv | NewTeeVee: Abraham K Biggs committed suicide on Wednesday while broadcasting himself on video site Justin.tv. Apparently the 19yo Floridian was egged on by commenters on Justin.tv and forum users on bodybuilding.com. The article canvasses some of the legal and ethical issues.

Stilgherrian’s links for 26 August 2008 through 30 August 2008, collected using a fine-meshed net and a spoon:

Yes, it’s finally complete! Our short film, The Shave. Enjoy. It runs for 3 minutes 35 seconds.

If the embedded video doesn’t work for you, try here.

We decided on the desaturated look rather than going all the way to black and white — though you can see that version in Stilgherrian Live Alpha episode 8.

For those interested in the technicals, it was shot using the built-in iSight camera on my MacBook Pro. We sat the computer on books piled on a milk crate sitting on the kitchen table, and used desk lamps for lighting. We recorded it using Apple’s Photo Booth software. ’Pong edited it using iMovie. Whaddyareckon?

And episode 8 of Stilgherrian Live Alpha, the final in the Alpha series, is now online. This special edition (an hour!) included our short film The Shave.

07 August 2008 by Stilgherrian | No comments

Here are the web links I’ve found for 04 August 2008 through 05 August 2008, posted automatically using a coat hanger, three melons and a small well-brushed poodle.

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