Archivo de la categoría: youtube

Finished before it’s even began

The amateur video of the day is so funny! I was just writing my thoughts on postmodernism so I looked for some videos about it on youtube. This is really creative and I think it nicely explains postmodern art.

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Archivado bajo postmodernism, youtube

Hitler gets a Mac

The amateur video of the day has a lot of elements from popular culture. Using footage from a recent german movie, the author of the video presents the situation of Hitler getting a Mac (I just learned we shouldn’t use that term to refer to Apple computers, but anyway) and having lots of problems with it. So we have:

  • Hitler
  • Macs
  • The PC vs Mac controversy (hundreds of comments on how one is better than the other one)
  • The use of humor to transform a historical fact into an everyday life situation :)


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Archivado bajo History, Popular culture, youtube

57 states

The amateur video of the day is actually annoying, but it includes a compilation on lots of popular culture material (specially for americans, you know, from the United States?). I think it’s kinda scary too. You’ll see why.

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Archivado bajo Popular culture, youtube

They’re taking the hobbits to Isengard!

My first post on amateur videos, and it’s a really geeky one.

I’m a big fan of Lord of the Rings so I find this video funny and creative. This is the first one created before people started sampling their favorite movies, like 300 and Pirates of the Caribbean. 

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Archivado bajo Popular culture, youtube

Deinstitutionalization, the key to the internet’s success

We saw in class how the deinstitutionalization is the KEY tool of the internet. When the modern social system was created, the people in power decided to institutionalized everything, so they could control several aspects of the social life. For example, first, men created religion but then the Church was born, so that people knew the official way to do things “properly”. Same thing happened with laws, government, education, art and a long etcetera. 

With the emergence of the internet, people had now access to unofficial contents, forbidden readings and images, controversial data and so on. Since it is a source of information that’s not institutionalized, it has much more freedom than other media, and this is what keeps attracting people to use it as a reference, or even as a truth finder.

Traditional media like television and the press, are talking about what’s going on the internet, giving the chance to underground communication products to become mainstream. However, it might look innocent and harmless, but media corporations are doing that because they don’t want to lose control over the information, and it’s a way of saying “we are aware of what’s popular, we are watching you”. So the culture is policed, because as members of a civilization, we should fear lack of control, we should repress every instinct that sets us apart from the human rationality and we shouldn’t be watching or learning from a source that has no regulations whatsoever. 

Everyday in the Jock Turcott Building of the University of Ottawa, in the first floor, inside the office of “Protection Services”, there are several videos about drugs being projected. The information comes from an official source and it’s there in order for the students to learn more about the risks of doing any kind of drug. I have seen those videos many times, read the pamphlets and even asked questions, but I can also get the same info and more from the internet. This is an example of videos you can find:

So we have the stoner trying to show how to roll a blunt in the “proper manner”, and we have a professor talking about how drugs should be legalized. That seems pretty legit, and it’s interesting to read all the comments the video generated. Even when you can find videos like “how to smoke crack”, on the other hand you can bump into serious information, so why shouldn’t we take advantage of this deinstitutionalized media?

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Archivado bajo Media, youtube

Stereotypes in Youtube

Here it is, my midterm assignment!

The amateur video phenomenon I chose was “Because I’m ____________” videos.

This consists of people out there making fun of the stereotypes they have to put up with in normal life, when coming from a particular background different that the countries they live in.

I tried to emphasized the fact that traditional media is the one in charge of creating, spreading and maintaining those stereotypes, in order to control the divided society in an easier way. This process has been working pretty well but is definitely suffering because of the new alternative media: blogs, vlogs, personal spaces on the net, and so on. With the emergence of youtube, the possibilities are infinite and  even though your video can be removed, you can always post it again with a potential audience of hundreds of millions!

So, the stereotyped people can now create their own videos making fun of the situations, therefor communicating that it is not a big deal, it’s not going to stop them from doing and being whoever they want. Yey! rebellion!

The main sources of information were:

Chomsky, N. (1991). Media control. The spectacular achievements of propaganda. New York: Seven Stories Press. 

Oakes, P. J., Haslam S. A., & Turner J. C. (1994). Stereotyping and social reality. Great Britain: Blackwell Publishers.

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Archivado bajo Culture, Media, youtube

The 113,176,284 views of fame

Stardom and identity, two basic things we need to take care of if we want to become famous someday…
This chapter presents an interesting analysis about the created (MANUFACTURED) image of singers and bands, so they can become representative of something with a deep meaning.

Andrew Goodwin provides some examples: Vanilla Ice’s created past, so people into rap music would think he’s from “the ghetto”, when he has spent his life going from middle to upper class. A newer example could be Jennifer Lopez, on her song “Jenny from the block”, in which she describes how she’s from the South-Side Bronx, and how she always keeps that in mind, to stay down to earth. The truth is even when she lived in the Bronx, neighbors and teachers have acknowledged her social position was not bad at all.

It’s not a secret that pretty much every band or singer who wants to become famous has to give up its own image and style (if they had any) so managers and record companies can create a new one, more attractive, commercial and flattering. They cannot look like regular people, because in the end, if you want to be a star, you have to look like a star. This doesn’t apply only to pop singers, there also a created image waiting for country musicians, rock bands, metal gods and whatever that pops into your mind. Each music scene has its own stereotypes and they have to be fulfilled. 

The author mentions that music videos provide clues of who the star is, rather than complete meanings, so the mystery factor becomes the key to consumers buying and visiting everything that has to do with the star, in order to accumulate as much pieces as possible, to put the puzzle together. 

c_amy_winehouse_3But the star is not always singing, shooting videos or giving interviews, that is just what the music companies want us to believe. The star also has a life and we are extremely surprised whenever we see the magazine’s section: “People like us”, that shows movie stars or famous musicians doing normal things, like buying coffee or looking awful. Why do we automatically assume singers are role models? Why do we, as consumers, embrace the speech of rebelliousness and coolness of a star and then get outraged by celebrities doing drugs? 
We are doing exactly what they want us to do as consumers, idealizing famous people and thinking they’re better than us just because of fame itself.

But guess what, common people have find an easy way to become famous, without having to go through all the stardom issues. Yes! Youtube man, as the answer to everyone wanting to get their 15 minutes of fame, by having several thousands of people watching their videos everyday. 

In press conferences, managers control how pictures of the star are taken, but what happens when there are millions of  people with cameras all around the world?

See for yourself (It’s not good and still, has 113,176,284 million views):

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Archivado bajo Media, youtube