Uncertainties in amateur media for 2012


12 Responses to “Uncertainties in amateur media for 2012”

  1. Anonymous says:

    The massive majority of dreck won’t end until the barriers to entry increase. The average quality might rise, and the production quality of the best amateur stuff will improve, but as long as you can post to YouTube from a web cam, most of it’ll always be shit.

    Desktop and web publishing are poor analogs, because neither do nearly as much for vanity as video.

  2. Takuan says:

    Sturgeon’s Law ever applies.

  3. misterfricative says:

    Here’s what I don’t understand: OK, so Sing For Change was judged a horror by Democrats. But why isn’t this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mr5mvNPyV1I judged a horror by breast cancer victims? And why do Christians appear to lap up schlock like this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wc9mWrLCT6o ??

    Personally I find all three of these videos about equally repellent — but why is one of them (arguably the most sincere/least cynical one) rejected by its target audience community, while the other two are welcomed? Surely it can’t be anything as crass as production values? And/or endorsement by an authority?

    Or here’s another hypothesis: peer pressure. If the initial Democrat response to Sing For Change had happened to be positive (eg ‘Aww, look at the cute kids singing their hearts out for the Change that their parents believe in’) would everyone have subsequently jumped the other way in their judgment here? (It shouldn’t be too hard to design a Milgram-type experiment to test this hypothesis.)

  4. cshirky says:

    misterfricative, I think there are two big differences between Sing for Change and other kid-vid.

    First, the right to vote, though more honored than used, is specifically reserved for adults. The political opinion of children doesn’t matter, by design. (Doubly so when they are (literally) rehearsed in the expression of those opinions.

    Second, and probably more importantly, indoctrination only looks creepy to people who disagree with the doctrine. In a majority Christian nation, Christian indoctrination looks fine to a big chunk of the population. Politics, on the other hand, makes scrutiny by enemies inevitable, and that in turn makes even pro-Obama people able to see Sing for Change as a failed effort.

    As a corollary, btw, amateur media had a very different effect in the primaries, where Obama Girl and will.i.am’s Yes We Can were introducing Obama in laudatory terms, but only to Democrats. It doesn’t matter what Republican think during the primary, so that kind of media is safer early on, when the ‘scrutiny by enemies’ effect is small.

  5. Anonymous says:

    zip? seriously???

  6. Halloween Jack says:

    This seemed like such a dogwhistle to right-wingers–young children being indoctrinated by those noted Stalinists called public school teachers; see also the kids who saw a lesbian couple married in California prior to Prop. 8 passing–that I’d suspected it was possibly Republican ratfucking. Of course, one could always craft a response featuring highlights of Jesus Camp, featuring Ted “I am not a crack-smoking, self-loathing gay man” Haggard, but that may not whip up the center and left in the same way.

  7. Anonymous says:

    if you must zip, tell what you’re zipping and how big it is (eg 5Mb zip of 30 doc files)

  8. shaynafay says:

    Sorry to burst your little anti-liberal bubble, but many, many kids see their parent’s and their lives going in the direction of a downward spiral. Dad laid off, not enough money for food, clothes etc. These kids – especially age 9 and above – could have picked up the “Change” and “Hope” message very easily all by their little selves. Of course they want change. All their lives all they’ve known is war, fear, and that the “American Dream” is a fairy tale to them. Let’s give them the world they deserve.

  9. Anonymous says:

    CSHIRKY said:

    Second, and probably more importantly, indoctrination only looks creepy to people who disagree with the doctrine.

    I disagree, I think there are too many similar images in the collective memory that are negative that this video would creep out both political sides, not just those that oppose the doctrine they sing of. The basis for the video being creepy is it looks too much like (as the OP refered to) the Hitler Youth or a room full of school children singing “Happy Birthday” to foreign dictator (North Korea, Iraq, Lybia, etc.).

    You can like a presidential candidate and still be creeped out by watching children being forced to sing about him/her… The only way it isn;t creepy is if the children decided to sing about their choice for president on their own volition, and here in America, we just don’t do that. The teacher that put the above tape together just shot her entire load of Warhol-guaranteed 15 minutes of fame on this creepy video…

  10. misterfricative says:

    @Clay (#4) Yes, obviously these kids were well below voting age, and equally obviously, they’re likely to be reflecting their parents’ values, but I think you go too far in suggesting they have no sense of social values. And that their political opinion doesn’t matter!

    And to restate your second point: you’re saying that Democrats (excluding the Obama-voting parents who were seen in the video cheering their children on) didn’t like the video not because they were appalled by it, but mainly because they recognized that it would be good ammunition in the hands of Republicans? OK, if so, then the problem seems to be one of execution, not content. That is, the video fails not because of the indoctrination, or the emotional manipulation, but because the producers failed to achieve the slick teflon finish of the disabled vet video for McCain — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TG4fe9GlWS8 — ie the real trick here is to make clips that are impossible to criticize without coming off as churlish toward either the vet or the kids.

    Lordy, how depressing. There’s just no moral high ground here at all, is there? If they call economics the dismal science, then what does that make politics?

  11. Arragnathor says:

    I’m all for Obama. But not for taking ideas from North Korea!

  12. elmas says:

    Welcome to the new socialist America. What did you expect?

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