Sunday, March 27

Re: Terri Schiavo - On the lack of depth in mass media

I've been meaning to do a post on Terri Schiavo but the media coverage and political debate has been to damn appalling and I've lacked the time to address something so sensationalized as this case properly as it deserves to be addressed. So, I'm just going to post an email I sent out the other day.

On 3/26/05 I wrote the following in response to an email regarding this post:

Thanks for the response. Lots of company this weekend, but I'm glad I can steal a couple minutes for a response.

I'm sort of obsessed with media spin these days, it's absurdity is growing. The last week was almost unbearable with the politics around this woman who has been brain dead for 15 years. I absolutely loathe all political pundants, they've done absolutely nothing for the national debate, they are merely behaving like clowns and turning this into a three ring circus. I'll keep my politics out of it though and stick to saying thank god for Trey Jackson's Jackson Junction, Crooks and Liars blog, Media Matters, and Jon Stewart for getting me thought this week. I was about to post this on my blog.

Jon Stewart nails it:
(5.3mb Quicktime)

When he screams behind the desk, I'm there screaming with him.

From: Original post
Crooks and Liars - Culture of Strife

What's more we can see the actual clips thanks to media matters.
Here's one:
(2mb QuickTime)

Buchanan compared removal of Schiavo's feeding tube to Nazi "crimes against humanity" ... [Media Matters for America]

Stewart has the best and worst job in the world. He's sitting shot gun on a media and political system gone absurd. His only job is to critique the absurdity of these systems, and he need not work at all, the material just falls into his lap. All he need do is simply show the clips and smile, or nod, or frown and we all understand perfectly well what the problem is. But how he keeps from hanging himself, it is only through the widespread support of his fan base, and the same with us in turn. Empathy.

What we're starting to see is an evolving debate as media decentralizes and it cannot happen fast enough. The debate within media has reached a new state of myopia. Polling shows 75% plus citizens agree that this poor lady should be let die and yet we have political pundants and politicians comparing this to nazi concentration camps "crimes against humanity"? We cannot have enough Lisa Reins, Media Matters and the rest of these political bloggers actually going, grabbing clips and dissecting media. We need not even voice our opinions, merely re-contextualizing the material, letting it speak for itself and holding it up for all to see. Its absurdity is enough to enable the real debate not some fake on screen debate and not some polls, but real people speaking about it in length. This is my strongest argument and yet I the only opinion I've stated is that decentralization of the debate cannot happen fast enough.

Broadcast media lacks capacity for widespread human debate and with it the politics which feed on it. The sooner we can decentralize the great debate the better.

On top of the single clip I posted from Media Matters they have just about every news clip imaginable on the case. The Buchanan / Scarborough one is just the first one I stumbled upon. In fact Scarborough's own words are much more sensationalist than Pat Buchanan's. You can check them all out at the following url.

Terri Schiavo case coverage ... [Media Matters for America]

Friday, March 25

Beatallica-thon - Hey Dude

Well, my self conducted Beatallica-thon may be over, and Beatallica's website may not be back online, but the music, it is a returning. I've finally located the song I was looking for, "Hey Dude", the parody of the Beatles "Heh Jude" done in Beatallica's loving Meatallica style. I am quite pleased, but won't be fully pleased untill returns in all its former glory. My lighter burns for thee.

Beatallica - 06 - Hey Dude.mp3
(7:40min, 192 Kbit/s, 10.53 MB, MP3 audio/mpeg Object)

Better yet you there is a mother lode of beatallica mp3's at the following url.
MetaFilter Music: Beatallica

Hurra Torpedo - Total Eclipse of the Heart - perhaps the best music video ever

hurraSome may disagree with me, but I think there is substantial evidence that what follows may well be the best music video ever. ;) For me this is what video blogging and new media was made for. When I see stuff like this it makes everything I do in new media worthwhile. Yes, it may sound silly, but I feel that strongly about how much this kicks ass. Gems like this don't come along that often, I'm very pleased I could share this with you. Enjoy.

"Two of my most favorite things in the world are covers of terrible 80's pop songs and abused kitchenware.

As you can imagine, it's a bit difficult for things like this to come together in a coherent or successful fashion.

Enter Hurra Torpedo."

(24.7mb video/quicktime Object)

WinMedia Format: hurratorpedo.wmv
(7.8mb Video/Windows Media)

DIVX Format: Hurra_Torpedo-Total_Eclipse_Of_The_Heart.divx.avi
(24.7mb video/x-msvideo Object)

Photos and more info: Duplex Records

Details: This is a tribute by Hurra Torpedo a Swedish band to Bonnie Tyler's 1983 hit song, "Total Eclipse of the Heart", on the Norwegian TV show, "Lille Lørdag" which translates to "little saturday" and is very similar to Saturday Night Live. From what I can find it was shot in 1995 and the group disbanded soon after but supposedly get together yearly for tours in Norway. According to the Duplex Records website below they have a record out called Stockholm and supposedly have recorded 11-15 songs on their studio of home kitchen appliances.


I don't know about you but I have ripped the Quicktime version of the music video to an MP3 in iTunes and am addicted to the haunting voice of the lead singer as he sings "bright eyes". It's to bad the website is completely in Norwegian. If anyone can read Norwegian, please post any additional information you can translate. If I may suggest it to any ambitious individuals, putting up and English site might be most profitable, I will provide hosting or any assistance necessary to promote this work, please email hurra-torpedo [at] or simply leave a comment.

Twelve years and a bigger hit than ever. I is possible there might on day be interest enough for a US tour? I wonder if the rest of their musical repertoire is anywhere near this good. I'd also love to hear about more of their work. Time to break down some more of those mass-mediated barriers.

A special thanks to these sources:

Another Word for Nerd - Blog Archive - Best Music Video Ever

Quote from: The Boorish Blog of Rev. Hughes

Leave a word of support on Duplex's message board: :: Vis Temaet - Hurra Torpedo

Flower Power - on revolutions and the power of flowers

Orange_ribbon%2CUkraine_presidential_elections_2004This was just a interesting and irresistable blog post that has been getting a lot of attention and I could not resist blogging about.

Robert Mayer of has gathered pictures togethere from several recent revolutions including Kyrgyzstan (Tulip Revolution), Lebanon (Cedar Revolution), and the Ukraine (Orange Revolution) showing the use of flowers by protesters in facing down riot / crowd police.

Read more: Publius Pundit - Blogging the democratic revolution




Two-limbed tiptoe aids octopus camouflage

octopusalgaeFreaky cool clips of octopus walking on two legs while using it's other limbs to disguise itself as a plant. It reminds me of an old Popeye cartoon.

I have no reason for posting this except that had these two awesome open standards video clips that were actually podcast-able. Wow. That's a first for any news site I've seen. Think about what would happen if everyone used open formats for news clips. Just a thought.

Clip 1: algae.mpeg
(1.2mb video/mpeg Object)

Clip 2: coconut.mpeg
(750k video/mpeg Object)

Read about it: news @ - Two-limbed tiptoe aids octopus camouflage - Novel underwater walk helps creatures slip away unnoticed.

Man smuggles own art into MoMA


banksymus10"A British graffiti artist who goes by the name "Banksy" went one step further, by smuggling in his own picture of a soup can and hanging it on a wall, where it stayed for more than three days earlier this month before anybody noticed.

The prank was part of a coordinated plan to infiltrate four of New York's top museums on a single day.

The largest piece, which he smuggled into the Brooklyn Museum, was a 2 foot by 1.5 foot (61cm by 46 cm) oil painting of a colonial-era admiral, to which the artist had added a can of spray paint in his hand and anti-war graffiti in the background.

The other two targets were the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the American Museum of Natural History, where he hung a glass-encased beetle with fighter jet wings and missiles attached to its body -- another comment on war, Banksy told Reuters on Thursday."


More Pictures: Wooster Collective : Stickers / Posters / Graf / Culture Jamming

Ongoing info: Wooster Collective : Stickers / Posters / Graf / Culture Jamming

CNN Article: - Man smuggles own art into MoMA - Mar 24, 2005

Listen on NPR: NPR : 'Hang-and-Run' Artist Strikes NYC Museums



Thursday, March 24

I was just revisiting some old videos prior to having a blog and came across this video

QUICKTIME MOVIE: iTunes-Pepsi ad remixed

Wednesday, March 23

Podcasting coverage on CNN

Apparently this was suppose to air on CNN last night but was bumped. Eric Rice sent it my way so I thought I'd help scoop it. Good press for podcasting, great press for Michael Geoghegan (who posted it) and his Grape Radio. Dawn and Drew get a nice mention too.

Watch it:
(7.9mb video/quicktime Object)

The producer of the CNN podcasting piece emailed showtimes for the segment. It will appear on this weekend?s Next@Cnn show. One of the shows I produce, Grape Radio, should feature nicely as well as interviews with myself and Harry Shearer on the emergence of podcasting. (For a Spinal Tap fan, appearing in anything with Harry Shearer is just plain cool.) Newsnight with Aaron Brown, the show that originally comissioned the piece, but who held it this week because of breaking news in Atlanta and the Courts will eventually air the piece as well.
— from: Reel Reviews Radio - CNN Airdates for Podcasting Segment

The producer of the CNN podcasting piece emailed new showtimes for the podcasting segment. As those of you that tried to catch it over the weekend know, we were prempted both Saturday and Sunday by ?breaking? Terri Schiavo news.

New Times:

Aaron Brown?s NewsNight Tuesday, March 22:
7:oo PM PST / 10:00 PM EST

(Bumped for story on school shootings.)

Also they will rebroadcast the segment next weekend.

Saturday, March 26:
12:00PM PST / 3:00PM EST
11:oo PM PST / 2:00AM EST

Sunday, March 27:
2:00PM PST / 5:00PM EST

Via: Reel Reviews Radio - CNN Video

Monday, March 21

The engadget podcast is back!

8031584382658027Haha! My absolutely favorite podcasts is back! This was the podcast that got me hooked on podcasting in the first place, and I am happy. The last episode was December 29th, and I've still recieve no appology and no explanation from the Engadget crew. Some nerve! ;P

I have yet to listen to it this episode and the anticipation is killing me, but since I had a little scoop it would be out this morning I set a side some time to clear my head and listen to it on my morning ride. Maybe I'll even give a little review when I get back.

Cheers to the new host Eric Rice!

Wireless, wireless, everywhere. Ryan Block shares highlights from the CTIA wireless expo; retail anticipation on the PSP; should you get an extended warranty?; a trip down memory lane from Playstation Magazine; and of course, the new kid in class.

Link: Engadget Podcast.23 03.21.2005 - Podcasts -

BTW, Because some of you, (all 140 of my subscribers), may not still be subsribed to the Engadget Podcast after these many months, I'm going to be really evil and re-podcast this puppy.

If you're new to subscribing and podcasting and what I just said made no sense to you can subscribe to my feed or simply check out the wikipedia article.

Listen: eng20050320_0023.mp3
(29:06, 6.6 MB, MP3)

Thursday, March 17

Advertising-in-the-age-of-podcasts - a manifesto stolen from Dave Winer

I have no idea in hell how I stumbled on this, but in five simple steps Dave Winer lays down the new rules to advertising in open access media. Something I've been thinking a lot about recently.

1. We're seeking out commercial information all the time. When you look up a movie review, or choose a plane flight, shop for an apartment, pick a restaurant or review your stock portfolio, you are seeking commercial information. So, therefore, there's nothing particularly bad about commercials.

2. Most TV and radio commercials are ANNOYING. By design. They're forcing commercial information on you that you DON'T WANT. This is bad.

3. So instead, create commercial information, in any form you like and make it available. This is very different from sneaking it in, or being annoying. Make it available. Then you have a responsibility to be: Informative. Respectful. Entertaining. Wouldn't that be nice?

4. Sometimes commercials are all that. Then I don't skip over them on my TiVO, in fact, what I do is play them over and over on my TiVO. So all the new media does is change the rules. Instead of being intrusive assholes, be entertaining informers.

5. Unfortunately for people who are intrusive assholes, there's not much they can do. Hopefully they made a lot of money in the last century and can retire and be totally puzzled by the way things turned out.

From: Dave's Advertising-in-the-age-of-podcasts Manifesto

My Thoughts:

Not that this is something new, but Dave states it so simply that now maybe a few more advertisers will get it. Clearly right now the vast majority do not. This is not just about advertising in the age of podcasting, but advertising in open access media. That's what podcasting is, a new leap in the ease with which we can access media. With this "quantum leap", this, on demand-ed-ness, comes a widespread change in expectations. A cultural shift. The new boundaries and barriers to the viewer switching the station or turning the dial are much, much lower. No longer will the viewer tolerate 25 minutes of advertising in an hours worth of programing, programing that they're already paying for with cable. Balance is once again restored to the marketplace. A new handshake is made. A new conversation is to be had. This doesn't mean the game is over, this means it's time for a new game. Some people would say the game is in "the long end of the tail", but the truth is the tail is all grown up, it's the new game. Perhaps one day they'll be a billion dollar industry for putting messages on tea leaves. Then we can talk long tail.

For now, I'd just like to thing that perhaps instead of no access, the poor people will enjoy free programming with 15 minutes of ads in and hour while rich people pay to have no ads whatsoever. Or perhaps we'll have no advertising and rich people will subscribe to the the high-res / high fidelity version of life while poor people live a low resolution / low-fi life, not that they'd be hurting that bad that their mp3's are only 192 bit and don't contain 16 tracks with additional surround channels. Perhaps there'll be no such thing as "poor" people and "rich" people to the new economy. Perhaps rich people will still use their shitty Windows because they don't care, and us poor artists and designers will still be able to buy our Mac OS because Windows breaks our poor bleeding hearts. But, who knows what I'm talking about? I'm getting off the subject.

We're talking about a marketplace of IP so seamless that advertising as we know it will be unrecognizable. What will be left is a seamless landscape of ideas where advertisers compete for our attention, not by attempting to buy our "eyeballs" and "ears", but by competing for the right to win us over. As such I would expect a world where commercials are more like Honda Cog, and less like ass-vertising. Though, I must admit, 99% of men would enjoy a little ass-vertising in their info-diet, even if a few of them wouldn't admit it in public for fear of a beat-down from their significant other. Heh, who ever said advertising was politically correct? We're talking about the future. It's not apt to get more moral, it's apt to get more honest, and what could be more honest than ass-vertising?

So, when will this brave new world of advertising get here? It's already arrived. It arrived with every viral advertisement like the Honda Cog that proves you don't win over the word of mouth industry with repetitious catchy jingles, but with entertainment, respect, ...and that other stuff Dave said. Here's the best part... it'll probably take another 20 to 100 years to become fully realized.

Yeah, so? Not what you were expecting? Sorry, but that's not how it works. In fact there will most definitely be so many other factors it this silent revolution that all but a few idiots like me (and Dave!) will ever mark it's passing, and we'll probably do it poorly on some out of the way blog no one has ever heard of. But who am I to compare myself with such flattering words to a great "A list" blogger, like Dave Winer? But there's always hope, and your hope is probably that I'll never blog on this subject again. : )

In summary, I personally have just one rule. Make meaning.

That's right, "make meaning".

There are many stupid rules like it, but this one is mine.

Cheers! :)

Related material:

Honda Cog:
(4.9mb video/quicktime Object)

And, from the movie that inspired Honda Cog:
"The Way Things Go"
p. Fischli & D. Weiss
ca. 1987
(1.5mb video/quicktime Object)

For more info see: Honda Cog

Wednesday, March 16

Beatallica-thon ...And Justice For All My Loving


The Beatallica-thon continues with:

"...And Justice For All My Loving"

Beatallica - 07 - ...And Justice For All My Loving.mp3
(1.6mb audio/mpeg Object)

Beatallica-thon - "A Garage Dayz Nite"

The Beatallica-thon continues with:

"A Garage Dayz Nite"

Take a listen: Beatallica - 02 - A Garage Dayz Nite.mp3
(2.1mb audio/mpeg Object)

Alternat url: Beatallica - 02 - A Garage Dayz Nite.mp3
(2.1mb audio/mpeg Object)

"Such uses of Sony/ATV compositions without the express authorization or license has caused and continues to cause substantial and irreparable injury, and is in direct violation of Sony/ATV's rights,"

Yeah, because that is funny!

Beatallica-thon - "Sgt. Hetfield's Motor Breath Pub Band"

The third installment of the Beatallica-thon.

"Sgt. Hetfield's Motor Breath Pub Band"

(2.1mb audio/mpeg)

Beatallica-thon - "Leper Madonna (radio edit)"

The second installment of the Beatallica-thon.

"Leper Madonna (radio edit)"

Beatallica - 05 - Leper Madonna (radio edit).MP3
(3.4mb audio/mpeg)

Tuesday, March 15

Beatallica-thon - my very own celebration of Beatallica's new found liberty!

Ha! I'm just having to much fun tonight. I blogged my last post at about 3 or 4pm before even going to check out Boing Boing. I should have known. Apparently I was listening to Beatallica's dilemma on NPR at 3pm in the afternoon and Xeni Jardin had already posted an update to her own NPR story at 11:32am saying it had all but been resolved and that would be back online within the week, with a new song!

Well I can't wait.

Sooo... I'm in the mood to listen to some "Lepper Madonna", how about you! Fudge it. I'm going to celebrate by podcasting every damn Beatallica song I can find for the next 24 hours. I suspect it may only be six or seven, but that's more than I've got right now. I think we'll call it the Beatallica-thon. Everyone, please feel free to join in. Let's do this ad-hock style. Post whatever mp3's you can, host what you can, bittorrent what you can, share whatever, whenever you can, how ever you can. Beatallica hath been set free!

First, I'm kicking this off with the Classic Metal Show Interview from 2/19 with Beatallica front-man Jaymz:
(8.6mb audio/mpeg)

From: Webfeed Central - Trying For My Own Cease-and-Desist Order

Quote below from: Boing Boing: Xeni on NPR: Beatallica back, thanks to Lars Ulrich, fair use crusader.

"On the NPR program 'Day to Day' today, I report on Beatallica, the Milwaukee-based parody band known for Metallica-infused covers of Beatles songs. As reported previously here on Boing Boing, Sony Music accused them of violating copyright laws, demanded that their webmaster pay 'unspecified damages,' and forced the band's ISP to shut down their website.

The band known for tunes such as 'I Want to Choke Your Band' and 'Leper Madonna' reached out to Metallica drummer Lars Ulrich. Thanks to his efforts, Beatallica will soon be back online, and the legal debacle over. Ulrich volunteered to provide assistance with legal negotiations for Beatallica, and asked Metallica's longtime attorney Peter Paterno to try and defuse the situation with Sony on behalf of the dudes from Milwaukee. And now, Sony has agreed to drop the case."

Beatles-Metallica (and Lars Ulrich!) vs. Sony/ATV - Lars Rules

Lars Ulrich has big respect from me. Not only did Metallica stand boldly in a very, very unpopular position against Napster, but I just heard today on NPR from Lars Ulrich's own mouth that they do not approve of their record label (correction: Sony own's the Beatles backlog, not Metallica's), Sony going after Beatallica with cease and desist letters. I believe his exact words were: was like 'I can score some brownie points with my boss or something by like squashing these poor people like mesquitos'
-- Lars Ulrich on Sony vs. Beatallica

Forgive my poor transcription I may have missed some "likes" and "huhs". :)

Beatallica has gained huge popularity for their highly creative Beatles / Metallica mixed cover tunes in the last month. I do not not if they've used actual snippets or source from the Metallica albums, but I highly doubt it. They are known for making their own highly original and very funny renditions such as Heh Dude, a clear parody of the Beatles Heh Jude. Clearly they ARE a parody band.

I guess the question here is as such. As the popularity of remix culture increases and money, even profit, flows into it will there be a limit to the fair use clause, parody or no parody?

Clearly, Lars Ulrich stands right in the midst of the debate, and clearly to this point you have to respect this guy. He's not playing favorites. He could have easily ignored Sony's latest unconscionable acts of greed. He certainly could have ignored Napster, but he stood up for what he believed was right.

But, don't get me started on Sony and the issue digital music. This is not the first greedy stunt they've pulled and let's not even talk about how their comparatively tiny IP business has been allowed to completely pervert their hardware business costing them untold millions and even billions. Go ask Cory Doctorow about that, I believe he's given many speeches to that fact. Each one with more resonance than the last. Here's my cliff notes:

Dude, Where's your Sony ATRAK?


You're Sony Walkman?



Oh, you mean my iPod !!!

---end of conversation!

Sony's story goes well beyond, stuborness it's called greed, arogance, fear, and even incompetence. Sony's got it all in spades. For more of these fine qualities see your nearest mega media conglomerate.

Now, if only we can get NPR to do more podcasting! Then I could actually link to a real clip and you could be listening about Sony's incopetence on your iPod. Now that would be cool.

Enjoy here: 20050315_day_09.rm (WARNING: Real Streaming Media, icky!)

From: NPR : Beatles-Metallica Parody Band Forced Offline by whom else but Xeni Jardin!

Hmm... You think she's got an agenda?

Everything is almost right in the world today. : )

"A Milwaukee-based parody band known for Metallica-infused covers of Beatles' songs has been accused of violating copyright laws.

After posting songs from their catalog online, the band received a cease-and-desist letter from Sony/ATV Music Publishing demanding that they take down their Web site and pay unspecified damages. The band had gained a large Internet following for songs like 'I Want to Choke Your Band' and 'Leper Madonna.'

While Beatallica considers its legal options, its site remains offline. But thousands of fans -- including Metallica's drummer Lars Ulrich -- are rallying behind the band. Day to Day technology correspondent Xeni Jardin reports."

Sifry's part 2 on the state of the blogosphere

If this sort of thing interests you then you've probably already picked up on it. I'm more or less just chronicling it here for my own sake. I'm sure every blogger is blogging this so please don't shoot me for for being redundant. :)

Dave Sifry of Technoratti has posted part two of his state of the vlogosphere presentation. A follow up from his web 2.0 conference in October. Yesterday he revealed that the number of blogs has once again doubled in 5 months as it has now been doing for 5 straight months. Today is where the truth comes out though. The number of actual posts. It's hard to compare growth over the last five months. It's been chaotic and there was an initial downturn of tremendous proportions after the US election. However you can safely say that in the last 12 months the number of posts has quadrupaled, perhaps more. From around 100,000 posts per day in March 2004 to approximately 500,000 post on March 5th of this year. There have been some recent spikes and declines but that's a 4x to 5x's growth all the same. A much more accurate portrayal of growth in the blogosphere than just the number of blogs.

Much more interesting is the spikes in traffic due to events such as the SuperBowl, the US Election, the political conventions, the Howard Dean Scream, the Nick Berg beheading, and the Kryptonite Lock controversy.

His synopsis is by no means thourough on the events that sent ripples through the blogosphere, but one thing is certain... the blogosphere definitely loves it's own stories. Kryptonite locks do not mainstream news make, yet the spike double spike was tremendous. It'll be interesting to see what sort of stories the vlogosphere favors when it's analyzed a little more. I hope we'll be seeing more on this from Dave.

Tomorrow: "how blogs are capturing attention compared to mainstream media sites, what news sites are being referenced the most, and how that has been changing over the last few months"

Go check it out: Sifry's Alerts
...and say thank you. Dave doesn't have to put this info out publicly, but he does. Thanks Dave!


"On average, Technorati is tracking about 500,000 posts per day, which is about 5.8 posts per second. In October 2004, we were seeing about 400,000 posts per day. It is interesting to note that posting volume suffered a decline during the months of November and December, 2004. A large part of this decline is the reduction in postings about US politics after the election in early November. However, the growth of mainstream blogging services becomes apparent when looking at the rise in posting volume starting in December. This is congruent with the increase in the number of new blogs during those months as discussed in yesterday's entry. It is also interesting to watch the spikes in the graph that have accompanied major news events. I haven't done a detailed analysis here but picked out a few spikes that stood out to me. The graph shows the effects of events like the US Political conventions and elections, the Indian Ocean tsunami, and the US Super Bowl. It is important to note that with major events like these, the actual amplitude of the spike is less relevant than size of the spike above the ambient amplitude level. In other words, even though there were fewer posts on the days following the Tsunami, it had a much larger spike than the one that came the day of the Super Bowl. I'm sure there are numerous international events that show up as spikes in this graph, as the number of postings made in non-english languages is now about 40% of the volume of postings that Technorati is tracking."

More on the state of the blogosphere

Just some silly article with really good facts. (Thank you dear writer.) It quotes technoratti's latest figures from Dave Sifry's SXSW State of the Blogosphere presentation, but more importantly it also quotes some from Forbes. Forbes estimates of 23,000 new blogs everyday and 12 million blogs within a couple years are much more conservative than Dave Sifry's numbers.

Dave's quoted as saying 30,000 - 40,000 new blogs a day. Also, given that there are 7 million blogs right now and that we've been doubling every five months for the last 20 months... if the trend continues we'd hit 14 million in 5 months and then 28 million in ten months. That's a wee bit different than Forbes estimate of 12 million in 2 years.

I wonder where Forbes gets there numbers? I mean even though it's been doubling every 5 months surely blog growth has to slow down at some point soon? But to slow down so much that we'll have only 12 million in two years. That's a little more radically conservative than Dave Sifry's are radically liberal.

It's impossible to believe it will continue at this rate for much longer. It's impossible to believe it's continued at this exponential growth rate this long though. I repeat again, for the last 20 months the blogosphere has been doubling in size every 5 months! Shiiite. That is nuts, if 10% or even 20% are spam blogs (which Dave says they've been very good at isolating out) it's still a crazy growth rate. I can't wait to look at Dave's latest numbers on the growth of blog posts. That's the true measure of growth. Not the number of blogs, but the number of blog posts! I'm sure it's much more conservative. Tune in in a half an hour when I'm finally done reading them. I'm sure they're already up now. ;)

From: :: Welcome to Manila Bulletin Online ::

With their accessibility and ease of use, blogs have risen to be ?the most democratizing force since the rise of the Internet itself,? notes Dan Farber in an article on In 1999, there were only 50 blogs in the blogosphere; now, there are more than 7 million listed on RSS search engine Technorati alone. With an estimated 23,000 blogs born everyday (according to Fortune), the number may reach as high as 12 million in a couple of years or so.
The blog, of course, is still morphing in form for as long as technological innovations allow it. Moblog or mobile blog seems to be slow in catching up in the Philippines but the December 2004 tsunami disaster has given rise to the so-called ?vlog? or video blogging which uses video as a blog post. Music lovers, meanwhile, have come up with the MP3 or audio blog where music files, most of them hard-to-find, are shared and made available for download.

The association of vlogging with the tsunami is weird. It's a sort of commen misconception, but really they had nothing to do with one other. Certainly regular bloggers passed around the majority of videos and would have done the same wether video blogs existed or not. Passing around a few videos on occassion does not make a blog a video blog. Otherwise we should stop calling the majority of blogs, blogs and start calling them all vlogs, because everyone passes around an occasional video. I don't even consider my own blog a vlog and I pass around lots of videos, lots and lots, but I don't create any of my own content. I only intermediate or blog about other peoples videos. Call it what you will, but personally my favorite vloggers are people who are more creative than I. As in actually make new content! ;)

Monday, March 14

Sifry's State of The Blogosphere!

Wow, this is fascinating stuff. Ever since hearing Dave Sifry's October state of the blogosphere on IT Conversations I've been dying to hear the updates and here it is. Amazing. Some of the points.

-technorati now tracks 7.8 million blogs and 937 million links, double the number it tracked 5 months ago in Oct. 2004

-the number of blogs has been doubling aprox. every 5 months for the last 20 months, which means it has increased in size 16 times since Dave started tracking it

-30,000 to 40,000 (NEW) weblogs each day!

-but all is not rosey - the popularity has produced "link farm" which are fake blogs used to drive traffic... blog spam...

-20% of pings technoratti gets are false pings from spam blogs

note: This is where it's gets very interesting to me, since blogging is so transparent google and technorati have been very effective at quickly identifying and blocking 90% of blog spam, it's still a dangerous game and could spin wildly out of control still, but so far the transparency of the medium has proven resilient.

-what's expected next: the big news on the big indicators: readership and the volume of posts which really reflect the growth of the blogosphere a whole lot more accurately, his last report from Oct, stated that readership was outgrowing new readership by huge bounds, great news for bloggers everywhere. We're not just talking to ourselves here. Can't wait for the update!

Below is an excerpt from his post, preserved here for posterity's sake. Be sure to read the original at: Sifry's Alerts: State of The Blogosphere, March 2005, Part 1: Growth of Blogs

"It's been 5 months since my first presentation on the State of the Blogosphere at the Web 2.0 conference, which I later posted in parts. A lot has happened, and its time for an update on what's going on in the world of weblogs, and to have a look at the numbers.

I'll be posting this in a number of parts, as there's a lot of information to cover. Today, I'll be focusing on the macro growth of the blogosphere, both in the aggregate number of bloggers out there, as well as the growth of the number of new blogs per day. Here's the chart of the aggregate growth of the blogosphere from March 2003 to February 2005 (compare this chart with the one from October 2004):


Technorati is now tracking over 7.8 million weblogs, and 937 million links. That's just about double the number of weblogs tracked in October 2004. In fact, the blogosphere is doubling in size about once every 5 months. It has already done so at this pace four times, which means that in the last 20 months, the blogosphere has increased in size by over 16 times"

Friday, March 11

who? 3/20 - for love of cryptographic memeology

First the "indicatrs" meme and now this.

"who? 3/20"

There's a lot of this out there. Everywhere.

From: Eric Rice :: who? 3/20

It's already infected technorati: Technorati: Search for "who? 3/20"

What is this some sort of squip or spime. Whenever I see something like this if feel compelled to say,

Come on people. Make sense damit!

Oh, I never posted that "indicatrs" meme, well, here it is. I posted it on the videobloging group, but never here.

On Mar 2, 2005, at 7:31 AM, Michael Meiser wrote:

indicatr's This is the first I've hear of this meme. It's Awesome!

Here's the opening salvo:

It's Very googleably.

And of course flickrly

Even technratr has found the action

All the poor security gaurds must be thinking this is some type of new trrorsm.

But for all the bad pictures and spellrings, not to mention the hystrical value, I don't see one actual valuble piece of infrmation.


Thursday, March 10

The latest greatest Sin City trailer

As if there weren't enough Sin City trailers (1 & 2) and fan flicks out, and as if I wasn't already hooked on this movie. There is now this sweet new trailer out, and of course they just keep getting better.

Watch it:
(28.1mb video/quicktime Object)

CBC coverage of the Montreal bloggers' monthly get-together

There's been a lot of coverage of American blogs and bloggers in the press lately, but primarily it's highly charged political outlets and frankly it bores me because it has little value, much like the political spin doctoring that goes on on such shows. I found the following clip from CBC's City Files in Montreal to be a refreshing and interesting perspective. Enjoy.

Watch it:
(11.8mb video/quicktime Object)

Via: montreal city weblog

Dan Rather signing off

I had to post this, sure Dan Rather's final signoff is of great interest, but WTF is up with the absolute lying sac of crap Walmart commercial right in the middle of his signoff? "working together with local suppliers to bring your community local goods, job opportunities and low prices" let me rephrase that "we pay people without even green cards below minum wage to supply goods from third world countries made by people making pennys a day but we sometimes do pay local people minimum wage and have started a new campaign not to resell local goods, but to start to think about selling local goods for the sake of our PR". You know I've never said a word about walmart, never did mind their business practices, but blatent out and out fabrication of truth in the media really pisses me off.

This sure is a unique piece of cultural zen. I'm reminded of an old SNL skit, Mr. Subliminal Man. "Hi, I'm Dan Rather I had to resign because I reported complete lies, now listen to this lie from our sponsor, and good night."

Watch it: rather.wmv

Wednesday, March 9

Emilie Simon - "Flowers"


A stop-motion animated music video.

Very Tim Burton. I like it. If you have more information on the artist or video let me know.

Watch it:
(20mb video/quicktime Object)

Animated by: nobrain - Emilie Simon - Flowers

More Info:

Tuesday, March 8

Jermy Allaire and Brightcove - another big player jumps on the citizen media bandwagon

This is big news. It sort of makes sense as Jeremy Allaire has a background with Macromedia and therefore ties to Marc Canter and OurMedia. Things are really starting to get interesting in this internet TV / citizens media arena. Scary.

Mass High Tech - Allaire launches new TV over the Net firm BrightCove (quote below)

Also: - Technology: Allaire's new idea: Internet content to TV set

And: TV Over IP Feedback

And: ? Bodcasting | Steve Gillmor's Inforouter |

It's to bad the BrightCove site is one big huge lame flash app, but at least they have a nice blog I can link too. The Latest from Brightcove

Jeremy Allaire, co-founder of Allaire Corp., whose Cold Fusion software became a staple application of the 1990s web boom, has launched a new venture in Cambridge. BrightCove Inc. plans to offer online video publishers and programmers a direct-to-consumer distribution channel through television and the Internet.

In conjunction with the company?s launch, it has received $5.5 million in Series A funding from General Catalyst Partners of Cambridge and Accel Partners of Palo Alto, Calif. As part of the financing, Jim Breyer of Accel Partners and David Orfao of General Catalyst Partners will be joining the board of directors.

The company cites the ongoing growth of home networking and the development of high-quality, secure rich media formats as some of the key catalysts in the creation of BrightCove. They expect to appeal to a wide variety of customers, from video bloggers to broadcast and online video-on-demand startups.

Allaire, who will act as CEO, said the company?s goal is to ?democratize? the television and video process. Anyone with a camera, an idea and a computer, he said, will be able to put his own programming in front of consumers.

Thoughts, I've really got to say, what in the hell is brightcove doing with their whole website buried in one big flash app! Especially while talking about democratized media and vlogging? #?*!#? I know Jeremy's previous ties to Macromedia means they're highly prone to Flash, but even Macromedia knows you don't bury your whole site in a Flash app that can't be linked into. In fact as people who really should know Flash inside out they should really know better. I can't believe it, a whole news and PR section on Brightcove and I can't link to a single damn thing. It's like they're trying to be deliberately stupid. Like they don't want the press or conversation.

They even have an "in the blogosphere" section in their news section, nary a permalink or trackback. All buried in a single big flash app. Nothing I can even put a link on. There's something so disturbingly and utterly clueless about this. From people who should really, really know better. Sundance is one thing, but Allaire. This seriously disturbs me.

Oh, no you din't! Don't make me whip out my scobolizer inspired rant on you Jeremy Allaire.

Sunday, March 6

The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - the better trailer

Picture 8
Aha, I like this trailer so much better than that original trailer found on the official home page, or the very useless trailer over on Apple's site which really doesn't show anything from the movie, what's that about? You better be careful with this one though, it's big, 52mb big.

Watch it:
(51.9mb video/quicktime Object)

Picture 3Also, A nice 1280x1024 desktop image (at right).

You know, Im so pimping commercial movies here I should getting paid, but I'm going to justify it because:

a) This is just such an awesome geeky sci-fi book (and now flick) and my friends just won't shut up about it.

b) Because Touchstone Pictures just so gets it, and by gets it I mean by putting not only their trailers online in multiple OPEN and portable / downloadable formats but also other rich media media. They have gotten clued in to the fact that heh, maybe 100's and thousands of people linking to, downloading, talking about and even sharing your film isn't such a bad thing. No DRM, no "streaming only" silliness, no calling your customers thieves and suing them. Heh, maybe someone will make a remix or a fan flick, and how evil genius would that be for everyone? Heh maybee Sundance will get a clue next year?

Finally, as if all that wasn't enough check out these bad boys, high resolution PDF format movie posters. Damn, who does Touchstone think they are?

Picture 2Picture 1

Ok, So, if anyone knows of any fan-flicks, fan-fiction, remixes, or has had any fun with photoshop you must let me know. Not only do my comments work, but you can also email me at

More: There's more stuff, such as a little concept art, available at: The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy -- The Official Movie Website

I just couldn't help but through in one more still.
Picture 5

Saturday, March 5

mmeiser blog has recieved it's first ever award!

I'm incredibly honored and proud to announce I have received accolades from my fellow blog citizens, a collaborative blog created by a group friends spread across the states so they could keep in touch. It is an award that is most agreeable, appropriate and befitting of what has become. Cheers! :)'s Blog of the Week:

Friday, March 4

Rats: A Sin City Yarn by Pitch Films - a Frank Miller fan flick

Picture 5 Picture 1 Picture 2 Picture 4
RATS:A SIN CITY YARN-Ripped from the pages of Frank Miller's SIN CITY story LOST, LONELY, AND LETHAL and brought to life in glorious black and white comes this powerful piece of work by Pitch Films. RATS is the short, disturbing tale of an old German War Criminal living in absolute poverty and reflecting on His past life, remembering the attrocities He commited and comparing the human lives He and His army had taken to those of Rats. This is a three minute short so there is not much story, But the way this thing was shot is right on the money. The black and white film and the comic book panel styled cinematography made this film look just like a Frank Miller comic. The actor playing the old War Criminal (James Peak) also looked as if He'd jumped out of a Frank Miller panel, defeated, wrinkled, and hopeless, with a face that looks like it was roughly chisseled out of granite. I would have loved to have seen a longer film in this style but the finished product was so impressive that I'll settle for the three minutes and change.

Watch it:
(8.2mb video/quicktime Object)

Alternate URL:
(8.2mb video/quicktime Object)

More Info: Pitch Films - Rats

Quote From: Fan Films

Also, it was selected by iFilm editors as one of the best shorts of 2004, along with another film short recently mentioned here, Rockfish. I'm increasingly finding things from very closed video websites out on the open web. I wonder if iFilm pays these artists whom they make so much money off of? If so, how much? In fact I would be please if you thought of this as one of your increasingly MANY back doors to content that iFilms hoards with out all the asinine advertising. God praise open media, it will save us all from the treachery and tyranny of closed media. Don't worry about iFilm, I'm sure like many they'll figure out that the game has changed. You can no longer force people to sit through pointless advertising that is longer than the actual content while crushing every ounce of conversation and freedom, especially on works you don't even own. It's a whole new ball game out there, and it's called conversational media. Just an observation. :)

Rocketboom rocking on robots - with Amanda Congdon

Picture 8I usually try to feature one great video blog a week. Which is to say I try to limit myself, but it's getting harder and harder. This week I knew I'd met my match when I saw Rocketboom's special feature. In it Amanda Congdon interviews the owner of a small robotics shop in NY called Robot Village. All I can say is, I heart my geek culture. Next time I'm in NY this place is number one on my hit list. I just love that places like this exist. I'm one of those kids whose favorite store in his hometown growing up was the local hobby shop. Sadly enough it's gone now. :( ...but I still hope you enjoy this video as much as I did. (33.5mb Quicktime Video)

More Info: Rocketboom March 1st

Oh, heh, btw if you like it you can watch a new video rocketboom every day at

A "making of" trailer for the new Wallace and Gromit movie

I really, really have the need to go find a copy of the Incredible Adventures of Wallace & Gromit and watch it. It's late, i'm going to let someone else sell you on why this clip is worth watching. Thanks Dave at, and thanks Jason Kottke.

"I love animation. Well, let me rephrase that... I love good animation. There's something 'pure' about a world that is wholly created and realized. Many animators understand this god-like power and use it to full advantage. But few animators are as brilliant at it as Nick Park and the geniuses at his Aardman Studios. Their most famous creation, Wallace & Gromit, is easily one of the best animated creations ever made. Any adventure of the cheese-loving gadget inventor Wallace and his genius dog Gromit is guaranteed big fun.

I love Gromit more than Mickey Mouse. More than Tigger. More than Marvin the Martian. More than any other animated character. Though he never speaks, he is more expressive than most human actors..."

From: Blogography

Watch it:
(39.6mb video/quicktime Object)

Also via: A "making of" trailer for the new Wallace and Gromit movie (

Thursday, March 3

Whirl-Mart - smartmob as protest, action as language

lineup-16653-mediumI saw this and thought immediately, Smartmobs! (Update: Unforetunatly as commenters pointed out this is more akin a flash mob than a smart mob. Stupid!) Not that these are technically smart mobs flash mobs, but they very well could be. This is something I haven't seen before, it's not an entirely new kind of smart mob flash mob but a natural evolution. People gathering from nowhere for a silent observance and a peaceful protest. Action with a message. Participatory language. I must say I like this idea of it. It's not confrontational, it's legal, and yet it's a show of solidarity and a quiet observance. Sort of like critical mass bike rides it's marked by simple legal participation, or at the very least benign civil disobedience. I suppose if you had enough people it might even be considered a DOS, a social denial of service attack.

"Whirl-Mart Ritual Resistance is a participatory experiment. It is art and action. It came into being in 2001 as a response to Adbusters magazine's call for foolish action on the first of April. What began as a single happening in Troy, NY has over the course of a year evolved into a ritual activity that is performed across the U.S., and known around the world. It is a ritual during which a group gathers and silently pushes empty carts through the aisles of a superstore. Whirl-Mart utilizes tactics of occupation and reclamation of private consumer-dominated space for the purpose of creating a symbolic spectacle."

This is the English Whirl event, but there are also clips from New York and Sweden at the original demandmedia page. Enjoy.

(18.1mb video/quicktime Object)

Original article: demandmedia || Whirl-Mart Videos from New York, England, & Sweden

I don't condon it, I study it.

Wednesday, March 2

Bubba, the 22-Pound Lobster

capt.paks10203011906.leviathan_lobster_paks102We're all a bit stupider-er to day, but we're still smiling. I don't know why I'm posting this except that it's the sort of thing you'd expect to be forwarded in a really bad email chain.

...Bubba, a 22-pound leviathan of a lobster pulled from the waters off Nantucket, Mass., and shipped to a Pittsburgh fish market.

"It is overwhelming," owner Bob Wholey said. "If you see it, you will never forget it. Customers are just in awe."

On Tuesday, Wholey gave the lobster to the Pittsburgh Zoo & PPG Aquarium, which will send him to an aquarium at a Ripley's Believe It or Not museum.

People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals sent Wholey a letter asking him to work with the group to release Bubba back in the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Maine.

Another group calling itself People For Eating Tasty Animals reportedly offered Wholey a hefty price for the lobster. At Tuesday's price of $14.98 a pound, Bubba would retail for about $350."

I once tried to order a 20lb lobster, but the chef at the Palm in Chicago who offered to hook us up couldn't back up his word. :(

Bubba or his brother at least could have been mine. MMmm... Mmmm.. Good.

Link: Yahoo! News - No Butter for Bubba, the 22-Pound Lobster

I'm going to hell.