Literary sensation Margaret B. Jones immortalized on YouTube

April 29, 2008

Hip Hop veteran and habitual scowler, Harry Allen, has an “exclusive” video of literary sensation Margaret B. Jones on YouTube, she discuss her upbring on the mean streets of LA and her new book Love and Consequences. The video is excellent as it is one of the few were we get to see Margaret Seltzer in full ghetto mode, using authentic street slang straight from BAP’s and Colors. The book can still be purchased at amazon and carries the description below, made all the more funny by the controversy surrounding the book: A stunning memoir of a mixed-race girl growing up in gang-ridden South Central Los Angeles, where she followed her foster brothers into the Bloods before she hit puberty: what she witnessed, how she survived, and-against all odds-thrived.


Digital Editing + Activisim = Hilarity

December 14, 2007

PETA, towards which I have no strong feelings (positive or negative), has taken its online activism to new heights with its Trollsen Twins campaign. The campaign is named for the fur loving waifs, Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen, best known for being human cash machines as children. According to PETA, they decided to provide the web with the above hilarity when to the Olsen twins’ refused to remove fur from their personal wardrobes and retail fashion collections. Of course, PETA might also want to address the “Pro-ana“, drug addled, self-destructive behaviors of the duo. I mean as long as they are throwing stones…


Marriage 2.0: How to pick a spouse!

December 14, 2007

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I was getting caught-up with Josh Spear this morning and came across an amazing stunt site TV show vlog, called 2 Husbands. At first blush the concept isnt that interesting. Two single guys want to get hitched and they have turned to the Internet for help. On their site women can upload videos of themselves and visitors to the site vote on who they should marry. Think of it as a mash-up between The Bachelor and American Idol with a $50,000 prize to the lucky ladies who get the most votes.

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But wait, there’s a twist, one of the guys is gay. Yup, one of potential mates is quite openly, comfortably and happily gay. Now I’m not one to judge the mate selections of others, but I tend to prefer mates who are at least potentially sexually attracted to me. Call me old fashioned.

The site was launched back in November and will run for a year or until it collects 500,000 votes for the various brides. Votes cost $2 a piece, which would give the 2 husbands 1 million bucks to start their lives with their new wives. Of course given how they got those wives the likelihood of keeping that money are pretty slim.


Boys Take Your Shirts Off

October 18, 2007


Improv Everywhere is almost as brilliant as The Yes Men and their latest mission doesnt disappoint. Abercrombie and Fitch, the bastion of retail Aryan purity, was the target of Improv Everywhere’s mission (I challenge you to find a non-white face on their site). What would happen if you introduced commercial miscegenation, the bane of Abercrombie and Fitch’s brand image, into the companies flagship store on 5th Ave in Manhattan? Thanks to Improv Everywhere we can now have an answer to that question. Check out their site for more videos, pictures and the full story from the mission.


Cheating on Pandora with Musicovery

June 11, 2007

I’ve been a pretty loyal Pandora user for over a year now. I havent strayed to Last.fm nor have I been tempted by Pandora.fm, which is damned appealing. But for some reason Musicovery has now caught my eye. Maybe its SSP#1 thats got me into it, but after looking over the site last night I’ve become addicted. The simplest way to think of Musicovery is Pandora without the musical accuracy but with genre jumping and visualizations. Musicovery is a thick, sexy video vixen with pretty bad manners and no conversation, while Pandora is more like the cute girl next door that knows your favorite foods. Sure, eventually I’ll grow tired of Musicovery but for right now it sounds so good.


Joost Signs Deal with CBS

April 12, 2007

screenhunter_002.jpgCBS just put out a press release announcing that they have cut a deal with Joost to show “first run and other premium content”. They are slated to launch content through the application in the spring and say that it will come from a bunch of the CBS divisions. The release says that they will make both new shows as well as previously aired stuff available via Joost. The content is supposed to included top rated shows like CSI: Hoboken and Survivor: Luxembourg.

Check out the full release here and watch for more details to come.


The Music Will Continue but the Labels Might Not

April 9, 2007

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Photo by Lacey

A great article from the Evening Standard out of the UK about a signer song-writer who had a top selling digital track on iTunes for a couple of days without a major label or offline marketing. Her name is Kate Walsh and she record her whole album in a friends bedroom, forever squashing the theory studio quality is necessary for digital success. Two things strike me from the article first is that while the record labels will almost certainly die, the music will not, despite the labels near constant claims to the contrary. The second is that while its happening to labels today it will certainly be happening to the studios and networks tomorrow.


MAJOR RECORD LABELS WITHDRAW FROM RIAA

April 1, 2007

garland_logo-1.gifThis amazing bit of news was forwarded by Fred Benenson of Free Culture @ NYU. It’s amazing news and a critical development for the online music space. You can get more information at the RARA site and I’ve duplicated their message in full below without commentary:

From: Press Contact <respectartistaudience@gmail.com>
Date: Mar 31, 2007 7:58 PM
Subject: MAJOR RECORD LABELS WITHDRAW FROM RIAA

MAJOR RECORD LABELS WITHDRAW FROM RIAA
Apple and Microsoft Help Launch RARA: Respect Artist, Respect Audience

April 1, 2007 (Hollywood, CA) – In a major break from the litigious and often alienating strategy pursued by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) against everyone from preteens to college students and grandmothers, the four major record labels have decided to drop all pending lawsuits and instead join with Apple and Microsoft to eliminate Digital Rights Management (DRM) from music sales. The companies are joining other personal electronics manufacturers and independent labels in a new organization, Respect the Artist, Respect the Audience (RARA).

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Music Sales Down 20% only 80% to go

March 21, 2007

The WSJ is running an article with the rather hilarious title Sales of Music, Long in Decline, Plunge Sharply. I wonder if that’ll get any attention with the Luddites over at the RIAA that think suing college students is the answer or the executives in NY and LA that let them do it.

The article, which is behind the WSJ idiotic registration wall, is a great read.Some of the more interesting highlights include:
CD sales down 20% first quarter
800 record stores closed in 2006
Overall sale of music (physical and digital) down 10% this year
#1 albums can sell fewer then 100 units

At this pace, which isn’t likely to keep up, the music industry would be out of business before the end of the year. However, even if they squeeze out a profit in the coming quarters and manage to escape the year with only the normal 7% decline in sales, the recorded music industry as we know it is dead within 5 years. No more labels with their current contracts, no more CD, more touring and merchandising. If Musictoday goes public or joins a public company buy that stock and hold it. Thats where all the money will be in the music biz.


Fallout from Steve Jobs anti-DRM Bomb

February 9, 2007

The image “http://www.crowrunning.com/fallout_shelter/fallout_logo_small.jpg” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.Earlier this week the Chief Evangelical Officer of Apple Computers Inc., Steve Jobs, channeled the spirit of Ronald Regan (media moguls tear down these digital walls) and wrote an open letter (read my post here) aimed at the music barron’s in their Bling’d-out offices. In it he basically says that DRM sucks, iPods rock and the labels dont grok the implications of either. Well it was a shot heard around the blogosphere and the commentary came fast a furious from low caste bloggers like myself.

screenhunter_014.jpgNot to be outdone by the rabble, the unfortunately named IFPI strongman, John Kennedy, posted a retort to Steve (El Capitain) Jobs. His response could be summed up in two words: “You First!” In what I imagine is a whining monotone, he suggests that Steve drop DRM from Apple, Disney and Pixar products as an example to the industry.

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