Archive for the ‘Media and Society’ category

Editors Lounge Friday

October 27, 2011

Alphadogs’ monthly Editors Lounge is always an entertaining and informative event for editors of all stripes. The discussion tomorrow night will skip the usual tech talk and instead focus on how editors edit — the choices we make and why. With high-profile panelists from features, television, reality, and music videos, I suspect the discussion will reveal how similar we are, regardless of the material we cut.

The panel includes Mark Goldblatt, Andrew Seklir, Derek McCants and Bee Ottinger, and will be moderated by Debra Kaufman.

Details are here. Be sure to RSVP. Note that the event is being held at a new location. Doors open at 6:15, the panel starts at 7.


October 6, 2011

By now, you all know that Steve Jobs passed away yesterday. Many words have been and will be written about him, and how much his vision and passion changed our lives. He was determined to see the future and make it real, and he did that many times over in his short career. Apple’s “think different” ad lauded “the crazy ones,” “the trouble makers,” “the ones who see things differently,” and “who push the human race forward.” Steve Jobs was very much one of those people, and today, one day into a new world without him, I wonder if any of us yet know how much he will be missed.

That Post Show

September 21, 2011

Host Kanen Flowers released another installment of his podcast “That Post Show” yesterday, and once again I was a participant. The episode, entitled “Cinematic Communal Experience” is a thoughtful look at the art and science of editing and, in particular, how web-based entertainment is changing cinema. We did our best to stay away from the FCP-X debacle, but there’s a taste of it in the post-show montage. Check it out on Kanen’s web site, or download it from iTunes

Pre-NAB Editors Lounge Video

April 8, 2011

Video from the Editors Lounge Pre-NAB Panel Discussion was posted yesterday. I was part of it, and we covered a lot of interesting stuff, including the new FCP, the future of the editing UI, 3D, the lack of HDCAM-SR tape stock due to the tsunami, and many other things.

The other participants were Terry Curren, Mark Raudonis, Lucas Wilson and Michael Bravin, and the panel was moderated by Debra Kaufman. It was co-sponsored by Alphadogs and Keycode Media.

The video is in four 15-20 min. segments. So the two hour panel has been expertly trimmed to about 80 minutes.

Check it out at Vimeo.

Part 1 – Final Cut Speculation and Predictions
Part 2 – Evolution of the Editing UI/Editing Outsourcing
Part 3 – The End of Tape/Thunderbolt/Camera Evolution
Part 4 – 3D/Questions and Answers

Sally Menke Interview

March 1, 2011

Elvis Mitchel has posted a thoughtful, sensitive interview with editor Sally Menke this week for his LA-based show “The Treatment.” Elvis is something of an LA institution, operating out of KCRW. His interviews are consistently penetrating, and this one is no different. Having helped run the Editors Guild Magazine for four years, I can tell you that it’s not an easy thing to interview editors with respect and without resorting to a host of cliches. This one does both.

You can listen on line at this link or via itunes as a podcast. It’s tight–just 30 minutes long. But it offers something more sensitive than you might expect, and gives you a sense of what made Menke such a special person.

As many of you know, Sally spent much of her working life cutting Quentin Tarantino’s pictures. She died tragically last year, while hiking in Griffith Park.

Digital Serfs

February 14, 2011

With AOL buying the Huffington Post for about a third of a billion dollars, many have begun to ask how those who originate content in the digital age get paid. Huffington Post was created with mostly unpaid blog posts. The bloggers got a lot of exposure and understood what they were doing, but they may not be so sanguine as they watch the big checks get written. It’s all well and good to say that you are blogging to create PR for yourself, but at some point, you have to put food on the table. David Carr wrote a thoughtful article on this subject for the NY Times today (At Media Companies, A Nation of Serfs). It’s nicely summed up with a quote from Anthony De Rosa, a product manager at Reuters. “The technology of a lot of these sites is very seductive, and it lulls you into contributing,” he said. “We are being played for suckers to feed the beast, to create content that ends up creating value for others.”

We in post production are digital content creators, too, and many are facing declining wages as our technology gets democratized. Will Huffington Post begin to pay everyone? Or will we continue to chase each other to the bottom? Jaron Lanier, in his brilliant book “You Are Not a Gadget,” indicates that creative people are destined to become the peasants of the digital age. “The combination of hive mind and advertising has resulted in a new kind of social contract,” he says. “The basic idea of this contract is that authors, journalists, musicians, and artists are encouraged to treat the fruits of their intellects and imaginations as fragments to be given without pay to the hive mind. Reciprocity takes the form of self-promotion. Culture is to become precisely nothing but advertising” (p83).

Verizon Sues the FCC

January 22, 2011

If anybody was laboring under the illusion that the big internet service providers are benign giants who want us all to share in the democratic bounties of the net, a small article in yesterday’s NY Times should serve as a cautionary reminder that we ain’t living in Mayberry. The FCC recently drafted a grand compromise on network neutrality (remarkably similar to a proposal originally suggested by Google and Verizon) that would force landline internet providers to treat all websites equally, but would let wireless providers block or give priority to whichever sites they choose. Transparency was supposed to prevent abuses, but since, for better or worse, we’re all moving toward the wireless web, most public interest groups thought this wasn’t much of a compromise. And, even thought it was their idea, it just wasn’t good enough for Verizon, which promptly sued, saying that the FCC lacks jurisdiction to regulate them at all.