Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Consumers Union Buys Consumerist!

If you have followed my blog... (yes there are a few weird people out there) you may have seen my unsolisisied advice to consumer Reports post a while back...

Doc's Unsolicited Advice To Consumer Reports Post
In that post about how I took a survey for them and offered a long laundry list of how I felt they needed to get really aggressive or perish in the modern world. Here is a short snip:
I may be telling you a bunch of stuff you already know, but I never see a CR story listed on Digg for example. Now your in a tough spot due to the whole "information wants to be free" dogma that is sweeping our culture and how that is in serious conflict with how you do your work... so I guess you may have to let "some" of it go... a "short attention span version" of the reviews. Get them reading, then REALLY play up the direct support with no advertising angle and maybe even EXPOSE the hidden advertising and "gaming" (fixing ratings) on other sources that people seem oblivious too.
Now I am not suggesting that I personaly motivated this move but they seem to be doing exactly sort of thing I thing they I would suggest they do in order to get up to date, Like acquiring The Consumerist!. Maybe a lot of people are sending emails and including sharp tongued notes in their surveys. : )
Check out the story here... Consumers Union Buys Consumerist!

I love this website, they have been kicking ass in exactly the way I want a consumer advocacy
website to do. My only regret is that I haven't had time to read it MORE.

The possibility that the long time credibility and experience of CR could be influenced by the Consumerist staff and vice versa makes me feel kinda warm and fuzzy inside. It's the kinda thing that could POSSIBLY lead to very good things. At any rate, it can't be as bad as CR stagnating and becoming more obscure to younger people. Lets hope they are not just interested in The Consumerist as a cheap way to advertise... 

I sincerely hope the see them as a resource for new ideas on how to use the web to fire people up about getting what you pay for and hold companies feet to the fire when they make crappy products.

More Unsolicited Advice For Consumer Reports

Back in June I sent may this email which was a follow-up to the survey comments offered them back in April.

CR Staff,
I just wanted to let you know that I have attempted to use your website 4 times now and have unfortunately not found information on products I was interested in each time.

This last time was a bit confusing because I was using other sources of information and one review quoted Consumer Reports! I was overjoyed that my subscription would pay off and I could get good solid information without having to muck about on the web sifting through the shills and hype.

Imagine my surprise when I logged on only to find out that a search pulled up nothing. I narrowed my search and found an interesting page of content that WAS NOT on the site, with instructions on how to get it... The way it reads, it sounds like you would pay $7.95 for a back issue or if thats not available... you will get a photocopy of the story for that same $7.95.

My question is, why not encourage more people like me to keep their online subscriptions and just scan the reviews from the back issues into a library of PDFs accessible to subscribers? I don't want to have another traditional publication in the house, I am trying to reduce the number of magazines we get as it is. CR seems perfect to be subscribed to in an electronic form... as long as it takes advantage of the strengths of that medium like access to archived materials.

As I see it, my number one issue with CR is that every time I try to use it, the item I am looking for is not there. These are not crazy items either, the thing I signed up to get reviews on was electric toothbrushes! And the thing I could not find today was backyard mosquito traps. I love what you guys do, and I want to keep supporting it... but so far, I have personally received no value from the service. That can only go on for so long.

I am sure you have many smart people working on the website and that there is a plan that I am not seeing, but from my outside prospective, it just doesn't seem aggressive enough when compared to the "free" (and crappy) alternatives out in the world. I don't want to see a world ruled by blatant shills writing fake reviews... But I think in order for that to be averted, you guys need to start kicking some butt!

Sadly, I can't report that in the last 4 times I have tried to use the site, butt kicking has ensued...

Thanks for your ear,

I think they are getting the message from people like me, some news today that would seem to be VERY good.

Friday, December 26, 2008

The Story Of Jamieson's Birth

I have not been updating my blog... something has been taking a huge amount of my time recently... Actually he is asleep on my chest right now and I am typing at a weird angle. its 3:56pm. This is about normal for the last 2.5 weeks.

So as late as this post is, I want to get it up for posterity.

A strange thing happened in the delivery room while both my son and wife were having problems... A nurse asked me if I had a camera and if I wanted to take pictures! Know she may have known that the worst part was over or perhaps she was just trying to distract the increasingly distraught and now mostly useless dad... I thought she was crazy at the time, It was only later that I realized that most dads take a couple of "snappy happy" shots of the birth weight and such.

I am glad I got more of the story than that...

Wire Mother Saves The Soft Pink

Monday, December 15, 2008

My Son Is Born

I have been crazy busy this last week because I am now a dad...

Its a very sorted tale with lots of twists and turns but with all there is to do now I may not find the time to tell a complete story for quite a while... so here is a picture of him for now. : )

Friday, December 5, 2008

Prop 8 The Musical!

See more Jack Black videos at Funny or Die

So many stars all joined together to sing and dance a message of peace, love and commerce! Plus NPH!

A whole bucket of win.

Clever lyrics sneak back into Pop music?

When I first heard Lilly Allen I detected something in the music and imagery that gave me a slight pause. She was unconventional in her attractiveness and I always think its great when the media machine allows a person that looks like they were not stamped from a mold sell records. Don't take that the wrong way, I think she is a very pretty young woman... She just is unique when compared to what "pop stars" have looked like over the last 15 years.

But thats not the only thing that piqued my curiosity. there seemed to be a cleverness in her eyes of the video "Smile". She looked like she was having fun and more importantly she seemed to have a bit of comic timing. The song itself however, although having a lot of potential with its jaunty reggae-esque bounce and interwoven vocal lines, fell short for me as it was too repetitive and did not deliver the lyrical heft I usually demand.

So I never recommended her to anyone else, and just assumed she had a clever producer and video director that had coaxed a good one off performance out of her like so many pop stars before. She did not in fact appear to be the vanguard of a revival in pop music that would give us an occasional song or two that had some substance.

A few mounts later I found out that her father is Keith Allen. I pretty famous Actor/comedian. Best in the UK it would seem. I discovered him by watching his documentary "Keith Allen Will Burn In Hell". Which is a biting expose profiling the controversial Westboro Baptist Church, led by Fred Phelps. In the film Allen basts the Church's anti-homosexuality views, confronts them directly and returns their insults with a bit of wit and a large dose of distain. (once the gloves are off). It was really fun to watch someone say some of the things I have always wanted to say to these fuckers, and in their own home no less! He really proved just how stupid they actually are just in the fact that they allowed him so much assess.

In addition to being a funny smart-ass, her dad apparently has some music industry connections... He co-wrote New Order's only UK number one single "World In Motion" and occasionally performed with them live. Lilly is also the god-daughter of late Clash singer and guitarist, Joe Strummer. Hmmmm. Don't get me started about nepotism in the entertainment industry. My father was only a radio announcer and if he could have pulled strings to help my music career, I doubt he would have since we stopped speaking when I was 16. But I am sure Lilly got a "leg up". Usually that annoys me, but strangely I am willing to give a pass on this due to the fact that I think she may have inherited some interesting positive traits from her dad...

Look at this...

She is credited as the songwriter, That doesn't mean anything I'm afraid, people often don't write their own books either folks! But lets give her the benefit of the doubt...

Life’s about film stars and less about mothers
It’s all about fast cars and passing each other
But it doesn’t matter cause I’m packing plastic
and that’s what makes my life so f***ing fantastic
And I am a weapon of massive consumption
and its not my fault it’s how I’m program to function

Nice... and I do mean that. I would have been proud to have written that.

I want to be rich and I want lots of money
I don’t care about clever I don’t care about funny

You know, this is a damn good skewering of the attitudes common in our society.

The song itself if popish and light sounding, almost fun, but with a pinch of melancholy. It has a "killer Hook" ugh... but thats all perfectly planed and constructed like a missile to deliver the payload of these lyrics into the minds of placid people... and THAT is EXACTLY what has been largely missing from good pop music for so many years.

God speed Ms. Allen! I hope your little stealth smart bomb explodes in the minds of lots of young people that need to change their view a bit.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Dr. Henry Killinger Costume

Dr. Henry Killinger

Dr. Henry Killinger

I know there are flaws... try to see past them and consider this my Dr. Henry Killinger 1.0 costume.... That is If I ever do him again. I tend to only do a costume once. : ) If I had had time to do the slippers... trust me I would have. heh 

As far as Venture Brothers costumes go... I think I did OK.  : )

Oh... full disclosure, I did cheat the eyes in LightRoom, I didn't have time to rig anything up to get "real" glowing eyes. I throw myself on the mercy of the interwebs. : )

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Synchronicity Regarding Cute Ancient Fictitious Evil

Has an ancient evil been unleashed in my waking dreams?

OK, so I love juxtiposition... and I also love instances of synchronicity, so therefore I must post about this. Yesterday I was chatting with my good friend Leslie (wave) and we were discussing Kappa. A mythic colon eating creature reviled but also seemingly adored in Japan. (Full Kappa post soon I promise...) and I mentioned that they even have cute plush toys of the beast for kids. This lead her to mention The plush Cthulhu dolls that you can buy, I mentioned that I thought that was not quite the same because those are meant to be ironic and it is unlikely that they are often actually given to children.

Fast forward....

Today I see that another friend, Angela had joined a group that supports Cthulhu For President! (quite amusing stuff) Oooooo spooky. But it gets moore interesting. I follow some of the humorous links associated with that "movement" and find this.....

So, it would seem something strange IS afoot! Be sure to vote. hehe.

*Better version of this post...Here*

Thursday, October 30, 2008

My Voting Experience 2008

Well it's done and I've cast my ballot. 

As I approached the library or the early voting was taking place I was quite amazed by the number of people standing in line waiting for their turn to vote. The queue stretched out of the door down the sidewalk and around the corner of the building. Both parking lots were almost completely full and this was just before 10 o'clock in the morning, so I assume this was before any kind of lunch time rush.

I went to the end of the line and started reading the book I had not really expecting to engage any of the other voters in conversation. The older gentleman that had fallen into line behind me took a phone call and somewhat loudly announced to the person on the other end of a line that since he had recently seen socialism up close and personal and, "he didn't like it." I was pretty sure he had made that statement loudly enough so that the people around him would be able to hear it but I took it in stride and kept reading my book.

A little while later a woman came by and handed out change of address forms to people who needed them. That same gentleman behind me took one and started filling it out. He then asked me if I knew the date, so I looked it up on my cell phone for him. After he was done filling out the form it was clear that we were both pretty bored since it was taking quite a while for the line to advance. So I made a comment about how nice the weather was and this opened the door for us to start having little bit more of a serious conversation now want to stress that this man struck me as very intelligent, quite sharp, professional, and respectful to me. He was also quite inquisitive about my opinions and seemed to genuinely want to understand my point of view. He listened everything I had to say, and seemed to want to absorb and understand it.

This is how I remember the conversation going:

Voter: Never in all my years have I seen this kind of turnout for voting, it's really quite amazing.

Me: Well I think, whatever side you come down on, people understand that there's a lot at stake. They're excited, and they want to do what they think is best for the country.

Voter: There is a lot at stake.

Me: I think the thing to remember is that when this is over...

Voter: That we all come together...

Me: Yes, no one wants to ruin this country. Both of these candidates have very similar goals.

Voter: Well, me tell you that I've just come back from France, and I got a firsthand look at what a socialist government is like and what it can do to its people. Firstly, the French people are very nice and very accommodating. Whatever you've heard about them being rude to Americans is untrue. But socialism was ingrained in everything that they did there seem to be a sense that the government would take care of everything for you. (He gave an example involving travel and the increased costs of ticket prices due to government involvement in infrastructure and how the population simply accepted it without question but frankly I had a little bit of difficulty following his logic)

Me: Well, I can understand why you would want to guard against us going that far in our government, but they have a long history and tradition of embracing socialism. We on the other hand are almost the opposite. We can't hardly stand the thought of using socialism as a tool. I don't think if you took the most liberal of us --- people raised in America -- and put them in control of the government that they could affect the kind of changes that would lead us to a system like France has an eight or even 16 years it's just not ingrained in us.

Voter: Maybe you're right. The people who came here originally were attempting to escape persecution and practice their religion freely. And then the push west and the freedom that that allowed people seems to create a permanent spirit of individuality not wanting to be under the thumb of an overbearing government. (I'm beginning to paraphrase here because the conversation is starting to fade in my memory. I don't think he was quite that eloquent but I understood his meaning)

Me: Yes, so given 100 years even, I don't believe that our government could be driven in a direction that would put it in the same league with the most socialist democracies going today. That would be a major shift for us and I just don't think it's possible.

Voter: Interesting viewpoint, and yet it seems like such a danger, like it's lurking, on the verge of destroying everything we have worked for.

Me: Well do you think that's a product of the Cold War? For so long we've been afraid of anything that resembled communism or an attempt at communism that even using modest socialist leaning programs becomes extremely offensive to us. The fact of matter is, that we already are...

Voter: We are?

Me: the "S" word

Voter: the "S" word?

Me: Socialist.

Voter: Oh, yes yes, of course! Since the 30s.

Me: We don't like to think about it. We certainly don't like to talk about. It's sort of like the Fonz on the TV show happy days we could never say the words "I'm wrong". (I do the impersonation stammering on the W. sound)

Voter: (laughs)

Me: But you know, some of the things that have made this country great and powerful are really socialist programs. Like for example public education, where would we be without public education?

Voter: Well, I would be uneducated.

Me: Oh I would be too! I very seriously doubt that my family could have afforded any kind of education for me had it not been for public schools. I had very modest beginnings and want to see before you now is someone who's benefited from that opportunity. And I think that's what we are talking about, opportunity. I don't think that this country would have stayed in power as long as it has without an educated and technologically savvy workforce. The public school system for all its faults is one of the things that has made this country great. Just imagine. If we had not had it, and the larger portion of our population had remained only basically educated? I can't see that having any effect other than negative for our country. Especially with the way our economy is changed.

Voter: But you wanted to help yourself, you pulled yourself up?

Me: Sure but I was only able to do it partly because of the existence of a strong public education system. Its a combination of creating those kinds of opportunities for a large segment of our population AND the independent "American Spirit" that I think has made os great.

I think we have to be willing to embrace the social tools we are already using and maybe carefully explore others that make sense. I don't think that anyone has the power to convince us to turn an unreasonable amount of control over to the government though. I guess the sticking point is what each individual person considers unreasonable.

(A woman needs to get between us to enter the library we have a short funny conversation about her wanting to use the building for what it's intended use.) 

Voter: I'm not trying to bring race into this, (yet I sense he is about to) (he also tells me a story about his business partner and what a great guy he is, I assume the gentleman he is talking about is black and this is his "proof" that he is not a racist, but its kind of hard to understand because he has lowered his voice so much.) (I start to get uncomfortable but try not to show it.) but I've worked with FEMA and I can tell you that the people in New Orleans had plenty of warning to evacuate their homes. They were told repeatedly to leave and yet they stayed. It was if they thought the government would rescue them. And I can tell you that the people who left and the people that stayed split pretty much right down racial lines. I believe that we have set up a condition that makes lower income people rely too heavily on the government for assistance. (once again paraphrasing, I am trying to stick to what he said but this is the spirit of it. It was not cruel or angry. He seemed honestly concerned that socialist policies had lead to people to not taking responsibility for themselves. I hesitate to speak on matters of race as I am hardly an expert, but his lack of understanding of what challenges people face I thought needed some form of response.)

(So, at this point my respect for him drops by several points because I feel like he does not have a clear understanding of what motivates lower income people (regardless of race) but I try not to show disrespect for him so that possibly I can get through to him and perhaps be a Rosetta Stone to some small degree and give him a few points of reference that he can understand.)

Me: As a young man, I lived in a lot of those neighborhoods...

Voter: New Orleans?

Me: No, poor neighborhoods here and there. As I mentioned before, I don't have a lot of opportunity starting out. So as a young man I lived in some of the worst neighborhoods in cities that I lived in because that's where I could afford to live. I do pretty well now, I have a nice career, but I can tell you, I feel I had one advantage that the people around me may not have had. (I point to the back of my hand)

Voter: The pigment in your skin... (He is quick)

Me: Yeah, I feel many people made assumptions about me because I was white, and conversely I feel some people would make assumptions about those people living around me because they were not. Things are different now, I don't know how much different. But I hope they're significantly different. (He nods in agreement) But having lived in those neighborhoods I can tell you that when people in position of authority tell you what you should be doing, it may not always seem to be in your best interest. (We are nearing the end of the line and I don't think I could've timed this better if I tried)

Voter: What you mean?

Me: I understand why you might feel that lower income people have been conditioned to rely too heavily on the government. But honestly I don't see it that way. Mostly, the people in these neighborhoods that I lived in seem to be hard-working people who didn't have as much advantage. I mean, frankly that's why I was there. (The look on his face shows that this is an epiphany to him) I've never taken a dime of government assistance except for being on unemployment for a few weeks. But the reason I think many people in those neighborhoods are less likely to trust authority is that time and time again I saw the services that are taken for granted in nice neighborhoods completely under served to impoverished ones.

Voter: You think poor neighborhoods are treated differently?

Me: Well, I will just tell you about a personal experience and let you draw your own conclusion. I was trying to stop a robbery of my roommates car and I was shot in the leg. It took 25 minutes for an ambulance to arrive, and 35 minutes for the police to arrive. They took a statement and left. We had to call and ask for them to send someone out to investigate the crime and when the detective arrived next morning he literally looked into the vehicle and announced that there were no fingerprints and left again. It was very frustrating and actually kind of frightening to think that you were that exposed. 

Voter: that's terrible.

(I'm now at the head of the line and the person directing people where to go makes a joke about "no talking in line!" So we both make jokes about being in trouble and prepare for the serious task ahead)

Not wanting to be like France and not wanting the grubby poor people to get more than their fair share, I of course vote out of fear. Good thing I had that conversation with that guy! *wink*

As I left I saw him at his car and said "Have a good day sir!" He replied "You too! I enjoyed our talk!"

Now, up to the point where he started talking about the poor and making somewhat broad assumptions about race. I was quite impressed with the man. He was clearly raised to believe things quite different than what I believe, but to his credit he listen to what I had to say and seemed open to. I don't know, maybe he was just being pleasant to the crazy strange guy in line? Or maybe we've crossed some magic threshold where we can actually start talking to each other about things that in the past would have caused an instant and immediate shutdown of dialogue.

Maybe it's a new world.


Oh my... Look how much better this looks in my developing WordPress Blog format! Link

Monday, October 13, 2008

Ridley Scott to Make Film Based On "The Forever War"

Fox has acquired rights to Joe Haldeman's 1974 novel "The Forever War," and Ridley Scott is planning to make it into his first science fiction film since he delivered back-to-back classics with "Blade Runner" and "Alien."

Full Story At

I loved the book, I love the films of Ridley Scott, I have wanted him to return to science fiction for a long time.
I could not be happier.


Wednesday, October 8, 2008

I had to reconstitute myself at a subatomic level after an experiment! Arrrrrggggggg!

I would like to spend a moment today paying homage to someone who cracked me up mightily.

Another Doc no less! Evan "Doc" Shaner. He created this hilarious culture bomb you see to the right... visit his blog to get the story and a MUCH larger than thumbnail version. (Being respectful of other artists I am cautious not to step on someone's toes while trying to popularize and praise them)

"What if Charles Schulz created the Watchmen?"

According to his post, it has been brought to his attention that someone else had the same Idea back it the 80's. So I am on a quest to find that art as well... maybe I can also get a thumbnail still of the "Watchmen Babies" comic from the Simpsons. : )


Found it!

This was done by Jeff Parker sometime in the 80's

Here is Jeff Parkers take on Watchnuts from his blog...
Great Minds, Thinking Alike

Ahhh, what fun. : )

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Volkswagens, Cats & Chunky Peanut Butter

Recently I have felt like I may have come off like conspiracy theorist among a few people when it comes to personal privacy issues due to recent caution I have shown over using cloud based applications and because I railed against a Facebook app that asked "random" questions of my friends like:
1. Was I bisexual?
2. Was I an eggs and bacon guy rather than a cornflakes guy?
3. Would I travel outside the country to see a concert?

Wow... those are SOME questions...

You know that I am not trying to stay out of every database in the world... That would be pointless. if someone wanted to find out about me, it would take them about 5-10 min to get the meat and a couple of days to get a pretty detailed overview of who I am just from the breadcrumbs I have already left so far on the web.

I actually have been really public on the web for many years because I see it as a public place. I have assumed that anonymity would become an illusion at some point and I would not necessarily know when that happened so I treated it as if I was never anonymous. Instead I act on the web much like I would in any public area... in other words I try to be civil and respectful. *blink* wah! *blink* hehe

So, I just don't throw my information around frivolously. I don't see any reason to make compiling a "everything there is to know about Doc record" easier than it already is. heh. I hope I don't come off as a conspiracy theorist just because I advise caution and don't like to hand out my information it I don't have to. : )

Its just a personal thing... The spread of personal information really can't be stopped, only slowed somewhat. At some point we will have no privacy. To many people and companies want to know about us, they WILL find a way to entice us to give up the info. My question is, why give up the data to them willingly? Why give up data to just anyone that can profit from it? Its valuable! And we just give it away! Hell, at least we should be paid!

Let me introduce you to Steve Rambam, He is a private investigator who lectures on privacy, or the lack there of...
I haven't been able to watch all of the video on his lecture, but check out this section and how Volkswagen was able to determine that people who own cats and eat chunky peanut butter are more likely to buy a Bug...

Jump to 2:30 to hear about dipping your cat in peanut butter...

So... wanna know the funny part? my wife has always wanted a bug, I don't care for them... and we have to by 2 jars of peanut butter at the store. Guess which kind she likes and yes we have cats. : )

He starts to talk about "Roveology" when it cuts off (watch all of these videos if you really want to be freaked out) in honor of that here is a bit of video that shows the roots of evil! Jump to 3:50 if you are in a hurry. heh.

Notice how they talk about sending mail to people who order steaks looking for donations? Thats pure Rove it seems. Even back then... wow.

Actually watch this part also...

Ah, dangit... I still sound like a wacko... but really I swear I'm not, I'm just more careful than most people these days and man, that is not hard. : )

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

If you don't fix the cracks, the rats can get in and infest the place

For many years I have felt like I was shouting into the wind about the decline in news media. It is most visible to me in broadcast, but consolidation and demand for profit have dealt the print media multiple blows over the years and from my perspective it seems like they have been in a weakened position, unable to compete or fully deliver on the mission the once charged themselves with.

That weakness has come to be exploited more and more by the powerful but now apparently its time to attempt a killing strike, at least in one jackass' mind.

Its rare to hear of someone quite this arrogant, but the tone of the McCain campaign begins to make more and more sense after listening to McCain chief strategist Steve Schmidt speak about our press this morning.

This is what he said in part...
“Whatever the New York Times once was, it is today not by any standard a journalistic organization, This is an organization that is completely, totally, 150 percent in the tank for the Democratic candidate, which is their prerogative to be. Everything that is read in The New York Times that attacks this campaign should be evaluated by the American people from that perspective.”

He also indirectly implied that they were on par with blogs, using the term "blogosphere", and called them "pro Obama Advocacy organization"

Here is a recording of the audio...

This all came after a CNN reporter ask Rick Davis an "uncomfortable" question...
At this point it should be noted that Rick Davis is Mr. McCain’s campaign manager, and at one time had been paid nearly $2 million by Fannie Mae and Freddy Mac to head a group devoted to defend the mortgage giants against the imposition of stricter regulations. He was a deregulation wank for the failed groups that desperately NEEDED to be regulated! This on top of the fact that they have been running ads blasting Obama for having "friends" involved in those groups... Yeah, I wonder how they even know that... Maybe because McCain's campaign manager actually headed a lobbyist group that worked directly with them!

Here is my main point, on all this.

The mainstream news media can not afford to have the public perception be that they are anything less than near PERFECT. They have to strive constantly for the highest standards at all times because if they don't it will give bastards like this a large enough flaw in their armor to stick their knife in and twist. This attack was on the New York Times but recently he has made comments similar in tone about many other news outlets reporting stories that he didn't care for.

He feels like he can say things like this, even about a well respected news organization, because a good percentage of the people will believe him completely and many more of us will consider that there may be some truth in it!

I want that to sink in... We have gotten to the point were people don't trust integrity of the news... and it didn't take much. It should not be this easy for someone like him to feel like he can go on the attack against the mainstream media! Part of the blame goes to news organizations themselves, for allowing a slackening of the rules and a blurring of opinion/news/entertainment to raise readership and ratings, and part of the blame goes to us for letting it happen and not demanding better.

We as people that enjoy a free-ish press should stop taking it for granted and expecting it to entertain us like a puppet show. We should demand it to be better and support it when it is.

Some interesting related links:

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

The little things that drive me nuts once again prove that they can be huge problems under the right conditions...

For years I have complained to anyone that would listen that a large quantity of content on the web is not dated and therefore useless. if soeone posts a review of an Apple Airport Extreme, how the hell am I going to guess what firmware revision they have if they don't mention it specifically and if they don't date the post? I would love to be able to sort searches by date, but since so much information has no indication of when it was posted or created and there is really no one following any standard to indicate this information in metadata consistently. Its a mess for the person trying to find content.

Well it has happened, that mess has caused a major issue.

Old story on bankruptcy wipes out shares of United Airlines

United Airlines Tallies Damage From False Stock Report

"Frank Ahrens, business reporter at The Washington Post, tried to figure out what happened."

FRANK AHRENS, BUSINESS REPORTER, THE WASHINGTON POST: "The simple answer is, it was a Google search. And Google discovered a six-year-old story on the Web site of a South Florida newspaper that did not have a date on it.

And, so, when Google found it, it applied the date of the search, put it on that story, popped it up on Google news. A human being saw it, took it as being a fresh story, "United Declares Bankruptcy," punches it into Bloomberg. It hits Wall Street.

And, within a matter of minutes, more than 15 million shares had traded. And United Airlines, already shaky, had lost 75 percent of its value."

Holy Crap! Sometimes I hate that I can predict the future... As more and more "stuff" gets dumped on the web, its only gonna get more confusing folks...ugh.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

My Insane Venture Brothers Predictions

Well, It all fell into place last night... I watched the new venture Brothers online and my fun/crazy theories seem to have more weight today than they did before...

If you haven't seen it because you still watch "TV" then there are spoilers ahead.... *****SPOILER ALERT*****

A few weeks back I told a my wife that I though Henchman #21 was secretly a super scientist... Now I am almost sure of it, or at least I am sure I WANT it to be true. Some major events happened in the season finale and I will cover how I think they will effect the show.. Read on...My wacky ideas will be revealed. Who knows by posting this at adult swim a while ago maybe I just contributed major plot points to the next season! Who would ever know? They could just say "Yeah man, you sure called it!" Ah the internet...

Venture Brother Season Finale Ramifications and Fun Time Speculation:

1. The clones were mentioned as being "illegal" I don't think Rusty will be allowed to start up that process again, he is now under scrutiny for such activity. Also keep in mind the time frame needed to develop the slugs... he had a "stash" of Hank and Dean clone slugs, one would assume it took years to grow the slugs to maturity in the clone farm... Why else would he keep so many? They are gone. The boys are mortal.

2. Brock IS actualy quitting, he needs to get away, He is missing something from the relationship with the ventures. When he has been saying stuff like "we arent a family" I think he really feels that way, but its not because of the boys. I do think he cares for them... Its Rusty. He is sick of Rusty's crap and the fact that he saves his ass on a daily basis and gets no respect for doing it. Rusty needs to redeem himself to Brock for him to come back. They need to admit that they are friends and work on a new relationship from there. If Brock comes back he should not be merely a body guard but a partial partner in venture industries. (with a osi mission and license)

I think Rusty will have to realize and admit that he needs and even loves Brock, he will have to admit that he wants him as a permanent member of the family and I also think he will have to prove this to Brock by using his skill (maybe even going beyond what he his normally capable of) and saving Brock from some peril in the same way Brock has always saved him.

3. Yes, I think they killed 24... and for good reason. Drama. We like these guys, hell we LOVE these guys! Because they represent us in a way. But what better way to bring us INTO the story than to give us something to fight for.

******Wild speculation for fun begins here********
For a long time now I have had a pet theory about #21 that I will now share for the first time publicly... I think he is secretly a super scientist! The best part is that he himself is not aware of it. You know how he is always saying "HOW DID I NOT KNOW ABOUT THIS!" I think its because he was the one (working alongside Dr. Girlfriend) who reverse engineered the stolen technology from sergeant hatred and also created many original technologies, but the Monarch erases his memory regarding these projects on a regular basis to keep him under control. Only the Monarch and Dr. Girlfriend knows that he is a savant. The only give him access to the tools and technology that spur his talents as needed. Am I insane? Yes... but I like to think I am a fun kinda crazy. And it would explain a LOT. He is always talking about how he worked on this or that but didn't know about all its features, also his physical condition doesn't seem like it would be tolerated unless he had something else to contribute. Also, his crush on Dr. Girlfriend may play into this... perhaps thats part of the way they get him to do what they want and those two would have had to work closely together... even if he doesn't recall WHY he loves her it could be because he has spent a lot of time with her.

Now with that in mind... I think the death of #24 is the catalyst for a rebirth of #21! I think with nothing to ground him he falls into himself and becomes something darker, maybe something even dangerous. I think he begins a quest to resurrect #24! He KNOWS that Hank and Dean "cant die" and he has seen the army of clone slugs. So maybe he strikes out on his own and attempts to get Rusty to clone #24, perhaps by force. Maybe along the way he realizes that he is every bit as smart as Rusty and can do it himself if he just steals the money/equipment he needs. At some point maybe he even gets visited by Dr. Henry Killinger and a new villain is born. All this would put him in conflict with Rusty, Brock, JJ (he needs to steal stuff from spider skull), and even the Monarch as he realizes how he has been manipulated all these years!

It could even return to the status quo after... because once #24 is alive again, he will be happy and want to be placated. He never wanted to be the hard ass. He was just doing what he had to do to save his friend.

Hows that for wacky!

One person on the Adult Swim boards read my post and remind me that he has been talking about becoming "The Viceroy" for a long time, He seemed to think my theories might fit with this. : ) Fun stuff indeed.

Who wouldn't want to see a trimmed down 21 fighting for the life of his only true friend, seen by the world as a villain but on the most noble of quests, willing to do almost whatever it takes to bring... him... back... and maybe even bringing Brock to his knees if he were unlucky enough to get in his way. Can they stop him? Should they stop him? Will 24 be 24?... or some horrible 24 like, thing!

Hell thats the friggin VB movie right there if you ask me!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

The cloud still sucks damp wind... here is why.

This is from the Digg FAQ:
"I don't see my comment. Where did it go?"
"Also, when a spammer is banned from Digg or a spam/abusive comment is removed from a story, all replies to that comment are also removed as they clutter the comments of that story and confuse users."


This is the suggestion email I just sent them which explains what happened to me and why the fluffy clouds cant be trusted...

Well, I was farming my comments for my blog and recalled this great little bit I had punched up about why yung-uns should pick up and read Allan Moore and Frank Miller. Ya know, trying to pass on some of my fading cool before the *cough* old *cough* ticker *cough* gives out... : ) (I'm not really old but hanging out on Digg sometimes makes you feel like an old man!)

So I click on it in my history and even though I only posted the comment like 2 days ago I got a "echo" message... I don't like to loose ideas, so I have spent quite a while trying to find a way to recover my words.

No such luck... I just think thats sorta brutal guys. I didn't break the TOS... I don't care if my comments are "grayed out" or "redacted" somehow. But often times they apply to the whole thread and this persons comment, in this thread at least, was simple and non offensive.

I picked it to respond to because it was representative of the typical person in the thread! So when his account got pulled my participation in the thread died along with it, even though he was only a sounding board for what I wanted to say to all the people like him that may read my post.

Plus, I dont see why I can't see my own words in my history... I can see the first part of it, so I assume it still exists in a data base.

Sorry to be bothersome. I just really hate loosing something I have written, it bothers me in ways it may be difficult for others to understand... I had gotten to the point were I trusted digg to use it for input and now I see I will need to reinsert an extra step and go back to using a text editor and save everything to the hard drive... what a pain.

Please consider changing these things in the future.


*update Aug 27 2008:

More sucking wind

I just lost 5 more very impassioned comments about artists rights and poor attitudes that people that engage in file sharing have for he craft of creating. It was good stuff and I think it may have even made a few people see the issue from a different perspective. Not many artists/musicians are rich and those people are also effected by the diminishing respect for art.

But since I made these wonderfully worded arguments as responses to posts in a thread of someone who was about to be banned from Digg... they are all now GONE. Man I hate this. I have sent them another suggestion email.

Digg Staff,
Several of my responses to a recent discussion on file sharing have vanished, I assume because the person who posted the comment I was responding to got banned and had all their threads deleted for all history.

In this discussion I contributed 7 controversial comments that all remained positive in popularity I like to think because even though they went against conventional thinking... they made sense and got people thinking in different directions... well all that is gone now. Well, 2 remain. Ugh.

Can't there be a better solution than the "Brutal History Erase Button"?

Please at lease consider giving us access to our OWN history so at least the cloud has some use as a place to collect personal ideas as you engage in conversation with others.

You may still see Digg as a fun site with no real important mission... but whether or not you planed it, a lot social ideas and information is being exchanged here. I am not sure it should be poofed so casually.

Thank you,

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

I should always be quiet when people around me start talking about music.

Other people still see the creation or music as a healthy and positive thing... I need to remember this.

Some things that kill a conversation:

People don't want to know the depth of the rot in the industry and they don't want to know about all the heartbreak I have witnessed as people who have worked like mad, driven, creatures and sacrificed so much "made it" only to have all that work and time stolen from them because the record companies could make a few more dollars if they "adjusted the lineup" in the band even if it meant replacing founding members.

People don't want to hear that "popular music" is all still horribly broken and that almost everything about it is basically a lie. A magic trick that has been growing in size and scale year after year and that they are the patsy. We used to laugh about The Monkeys... They seem honest now... like quaint folksy media pioneers, at least they were funny and they got Jimmy Hendix open for them and had Tim Buckley on their show singing Song To The Siren as if to whisper..."Hey kids, here is the REAL stuff... don't tell your folks!"

No one wants to think about the fact that their favorite singer may not be able to sing that well... or that they don't need to have the talent any more, real time pitch correction makes it possible to give the modestly talented a live mic if you are feeling brave.

Its not A good move to mention that many music acts are only partially responsible for their own sound... talented producers often shape them dramatically into the finished product you eventually hear.

Here is a social tip, Since most musical acts are not that original and can be traced back to someone they where trying to emulate... don't ever point this out to the person who likes that band, they will hate you for it, even if you honestly think they might enjoy the music of the first band... I mean, clearly their heroes were fans of the earlier band... why wouldn't they want to check them out? : P

Never talk about how making music is "serious" for you. People don't want to think of music that way. It is supposed to be fun and joyous even though most rock is about alienation and anger, somehow making it is supposed to be about having a good time... weird. I know very few musicians who are "happy" most are poor as crap and are wishing for something better... I guess thats all part of the illusion (lie).

All of this leads me to the point of this post...

Even though you would imagine I would be pretty good at it... This is why I don't want to play Rock Band with you when you ask,

It's a lie.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Leslie Lee Appreciation Week Grand Finale!

I have uploaded all of the remaining photography I wanted to share of Leslie from over the years...


It includes a ton of interesting stuff... for those of us that think Leslie is "interesting" that is.


But really how can you argue that point!?


So thats all I have, add more if you like, we can keep the group up. I will thin my stuff out eventually to a handful of picks, so grab your faves soon!

I hope everyone had fun, and most of all I hope Leslie had fun with it.

Click below to view the group.
Leslie Lee Appreciation Week 08 Group

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Something Wicked This Way Comes...

And now she is HERE...

F#*Kofficus Leslie!-7
Stomp, Stomp, Stomp! Here she comes.....

Better run, You definitely don't want her answering the door to give you candy!

As part of Leslie Lee Appreciation Week 08 I have posted a few pictures of leslie in her fantastic Fuckofficus costume from a few years back. Enjoy!

Click below to view the group. Join in the fun and leave comments or pictures of your own if you like. : )
Leslie Lee Appreciation Week 08 Group

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

When Does Construction On The Lair Begin?

And for that matter, can you even get real estate in a volcano these days? Maybe a dark swamp or a skull shaped island will have to do for now. Its a sellers market for prime "lair" properties I bet.

Regular visiter BENDER BENDING RODRIGUEZ has burst onto the blog-o-sphere for hacking a child's toy into an evil robot minion...

Let his career in supper science/costumed aggression Begin! (We won't judge his lifestyle choice. Villain or good guy, we will still support and nurture him as he carves the turkey at thanksgiving time with his superscience lasers.)

Way to go!

Latest Video:

Friday, July 25, 2008

Leslie Lee Appreciation Week 08

Leslie_Really with that?

Friends, It has finally come again, the time each 486 years that we take one week to fully honor Leslie for no reason other than that she is awesome.

The aztec had a name for Leslie, it was Quaxiquatiataltaxabelgle. Unfortunately the modern attempts at translation have only come up with something close to "have you seen my red feathers? I need them for my ass fan." But I am sure it has lost something over the millennia and once meant something far more grand... I mean they had a frigin NAME for her! They just don't do that for anyone... do they?

Anyway... I have collected some photographic evidence of Leslie's greatness...

Click here to visit Leslie Lee Appreciation Week photo set
Click here to view in Fancy Pants™ Slide show format

I will be adding more as the week goes on (not nessasarily every day mind you) so check back often! Also please leave links to any cool leslie photos you have posted... maybe we can start a group. hehe.

New images added today! Behold Renaissance Leslie!

Also we have a new content provider... squeezymoose! Since we have more than one person chiping in... as promised I have started the Leslie Lee Appreciation Week 08 Group where everyone can pool all the Leslie goodness.

Be sure to leave comments on the pictures when you stop by, share stories of Leslie inspired by the pictures! (hint: factuality is optional if you ask me.) Have fun with the festivities everyone! HAPPY LLAW08!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Everything I Need To know, I Learn From Alan Moore It Seems

A man goes to the doctor. He tells the doctor that he's depressed. He says life seems too harsh and cruel. He says that he feels all alone in a threatening world where what lies ahead is vague and uncertain.

The doctor thinks about this for a while and then confidently says "Well the treatment is simple! The great clown Pagliacci is in town tonight. Go and see him, that should pick you up." The man then bursts into tears, and barely able to speak through his own sobs says "But doctor... I am Pagliacci."

Yes, I am reading Watchmen yet again. Rorschach recounts this "joke" much more simply, as you would expect, so I embellished it some here. It is so beautiful and sad to me because I understand exactly how "the clown" must feel at that moment.

As near as I can tell the joke has existed for a very long time and Mr. Moore borrowed it to deftly use as a very clever device in Watchmen, The more I read his work the more I am convinced he is brilliant.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Darth Needs a Makeover

Here are my favorites...

DSC_0056 DSC_0042

DSC_0043 DSC_0021

DSC_0019 DSC_0009

Oh my god... you have to give love to "Darth Fink!"

Be sure to go check out the rest here..

BBR pointed out that this photographer doesn't link back to the artists or the project website, so if you would rather have the WHOLE story... Here is the home of the project: The Vader Project They of course list all the artist and have many more pictures!

Sorry for the sloppy reporting in the first place my friends!

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Hellboy: The Golden Army... Well, It Sure Was Pretty!

I have to admit that a bit of shine is off my golden boys.

I freak'n LOVE the work of Guillermo del Toro and Mike Mignola and since they are both credited as writing the screenplay for this film I can't let mike off the hook totally here it would seem. But I was a touch let down by Hellboy II... Maybe my expectations were to high.

It was fun, it was visually stunning as you would expect, but the story just cut too many corners (My friend Leslie pointed out the abrupt and poorly explored change of attitude in one character as something that bothered her and thats a perfect example.) and the film overall treated the source material too lightly for my taste. I suspect they gave in to pressure to make a commercially viable film and sacrificed even more of the tone of the oftentimes heartbreaking work of Mike Mignola than even the first film did.

I know all the arguments about making graphic novels and comics into films and how you have to change them to suit the audience... but you know what? Maybe its time we took back film from the "audience" which is actually just a metaphor for "box office" which is in turn a metaphor for greed.

Make smaller films, make them cheaper, have less people go see them and keep them running for longer periods of time, convert more theaters to digital to accommodate quickly adjusting to a smaller film gaining popularity quickly by word of mouth. In short make films that are not such a compromise because you feel you need to sell "X" number of tickets. I would like to see the death of the "blockbuster" and I would certainly like to see great martial like Hellboy avoid the "blockbuster treatment" in the future... and yet still get made into films. Yeah, I know, I am insane. : )

I am pretty sure about this "compromise to be able to make the big film at all" theory I have. I could be wrong, but if I go read Conqueror Worm and then watch Devils backbone again, I somehow don't think I will come away convinced that those 2 guys REALY wanted to cast Seth MacFarlane as the soulful and deeply troubled Johann Kraus. I was so thrown off by his voice that I turned to my friend during the credits and said "I guess I can't be annoyed about the changes to the Klaus character if Mike Mignola was credited on the screen writing." it was shortly after that that my wife pointed out that it WAS Seth MacFarlane, and after that I could'nt seem to call him Kraus... it kept coming out "Klaus" I think because after making the connection, he was then just a goldfish with a somewhat fake german accent that had been turned into ectoplasm just like Johann was and somehow ended up in this movie.

I have read they cast him because he could do the wheezing and mechanical sound (huh, mechanical sound?)... Sorry, I'm not buying that, we perfected that technology in the 70's with James Earl Jones. I think it would have been much more important to find a "good actor" if thats what they were really going for and worry about letting foley artist and sound engineers do their job after getting the performance... they, (or the studio) where hoping for funny I think... and honestly I don't think they got it. Oh well.

Honestly, There was still lots about it to love and I will watch it again. It just won't end up being in my top 100... which is so strange for me because I love the work of these 2 men so much and it seemed like a sure thing.

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Night Terrors Suck

I was in a bar just now walking around, a few other patrons ignored me. Something was wrong and I tried to call out to them for help. I figured I was drunk, but that was weird since I don't drink really. Like most of these types of events I was trying desperately to communicate but couldn't get any sound to come out. People kept leaving and eventually I was alone in this old smelly bar. I couldn't hold my head up and I still couldn't call for help.

Out of the corner of my eye I saw my old boss and I tried to yell to her for help... thats when I became un-paralyzed enough to make a sound and realized I was "asleep" sitting upright in the chair at the kitchen table where I had been working. Luckily my yell for help was not enough to wake anyone in the house.

Finally realizing what was going on, I set my mind at ease and relaxed as I very slowly got "unstuck" and was able to fully return to mobility and other aspects of consciousness again and wait till they where all in sync as they should be.

Its an over simplification, but night terrors are caused when you are more lightly asleep but the mechanism of deep sleep that keeps you immobile fails to switch off. As the name implies, the experience can be quite disconcerting, even downright horrifying as your brain struggles to explain why you can't move when you should be able to.

Its funny the "stories" your still dreaming mind will make up to explain to you why you can't move and can't talk even though you are becoming partially awake. Crossing that threshhold has become commonplace for me now and I have that moment of panic before I realize whats going on but then I "figure it out" and treat it like its old hat... but man I remember when it was still something I didn't understand... Good lord they suck.

I have to say, I don't know what dying feels like but it must feel like a night terror.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

I wish I could have known him, if only to know for sure...

I don't usually spend much time fussing about when celebrities pass away. I figure many people die each day and they all have played a part... But Mr. Carlin leaving this world is worth taking a few extra moments and commenting on how much I admired his wit and his ability show us the folly in the things we do.

He often just did silly, fun, humor that was light and didn't take any effort to enjoy. He could always turn mundane things such as dogs licking themselves into gut busting comedy... but when the man got "serious" and made us laugh at ourselves and the stupid crap we do as a society/culture/people... THATS when the man blazed like the sun.

I don't like to call people I have never personally met "heroes" because you can never really know what kind of a person they are from the "persona" and PR we get fed. But lets just say I would have really liked to have known this man and I strongly suspect I would have liked him a hell of a lot, and I am pretty sure he would have qualified as a hero to me.

Thank you George.

These are NSFW as if I should have to say that... it IS George Carlin after all. : ) If you are not able to listen in private or are easily offeneded... (who are you and why are you reading my blog! heh) then its best not to click the videos below.

Otherwise please enjoy... these are just a few I quickly found that I like.

Update: Its funny, but I had forgotten how influenced I have been by him. I know I have heard scientist speaking about the overall impact of humans on the earth being temporary, and that it is only us and our way of life that is really in danger from ourselves on the grand scale... but I had forgotten that much of the "feel" of my opinion comes from his well crafted and nearly perfectly argued monologue linked above.

So, much like the old adage "you don't know what you've got till its gone" I am sure I will discover more little Carlin-isims stuck in my mind. He wasn't always the person that originated these ideas mind you, I had often heard them discussed dryly before they ended up in a routine of his, But he found the ways to make them understandable and accessible.

Think about that for a second... The ten commandments routine above for example is essentially a breakdown of human MORALITY! And its not bad! He arguably tightens-up moral issues and gives people a vastly simpler code to live by in just a few minutes while making you laugh... and it mostly makes sense. Not that anyone should take his comedy as serious philosophy... but, honestly its quite tempting at times. He was just that smart and good at "connecting the dots", the great thing was that he loved to show us the solution to each puzzle after he did it.

The world needed him.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Japanese Office

This is just to make my wife laugh, she is more a fan of the show than me, but I also enjoy it...

Other people can look at the clip too I guess. : )

By the way, allow me to whip out my crystal ball regarding the office...

Don't read this if you don't want to hear my prediction of how the office series will/should end.

A few nights ago I told Katy that I had come up with the perfect way to do a series finale of the office. I think when it has all run its course, and maybe as a central plot point Jim and Pam have still not gotten engaged because of several missed opportunities and misunderstandings. Pam should have a bit of a breakdown in an interview, just talk about how she thought things were supposed to be "different" (Jim could have also had an emotive interview as well) and the "camera" will start to move like its trying to decide what to do.

Then suddenly, not able to hold his tongue any longer Ricky Gervais steps out from behind the camera revealing himself to have been the director of the documentary the whole time. He consoles her and once he lets slip a bit of confidential information that he thinks will make her feel better... he starts to lose all objectivity and starts spill the beans about lots of things to everyone because he can't stand to see them hurting.

The "director" could then take on a role of the great and powerful OZ, showing them how much they really care for each other by running the tapes that they have never seen. Like explaining to Pam that Jim intended to propose to her on the night of Toby's party and showing her all the lengths that he went through to make it perfect. I can even see a perfect comedic moment were he could be scrubbing the tape back and fourth at the point he is almost certain Jim was about to ask.

We could also start seeing more of the camera crew in a more loose style as a "character itself" bringing quite a bit of comic relief about how they have been doing this over the years and why... it might be funny to hear Ricky Gervais mention off handedly that he used to manage an office before getting into doing these documentaries.

If I am in anyway right... please give me a dollar for being psychic. : )

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Clearly Bowie is Evil

I have a friend (who shall remain nameless) who has never seen the venture Brothers, so I collected a few of the clips involving fun music references for him. The show is full of stuff like this and I highly recommend it for anyone who is of a certain age and likes having their pop culture served a bit blacken and on a skewer.

It's clear to me that these guys that created the show are big fans of Johnny Quest, David Bowie, comics and cartoons and everything that gets parodied on the show in general... but like a lot of us, they just can't help being smart asses... I like that.


The new season begins in June if I am not mistaken.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Selectively Utopian (Or... Small Content Creators Are The Redshirts Of The 21st Century)

I finally figured it out... People that share files and have this moral attitude that they are doing nothing wrong are not just misguided or using the technology to justify a arguably questionable act, They are just Star Trek fans!

They are trying to force the first steps of a Roddenberrien vision of the future where there is no money, there is no work other than what you do to better yourself and here is the good part... Technology has advanced to the point were all basic human needs are met at zero cost. 

Relevant Utopian Points of a Star Trek future:
  1. Energy is essentially free
  2. Food can be "replicated" using the free energy
  3. Living space and shelter is free (somehow)
  4. People create art because they can, not out of a need to earn a living from their talent
  5. All human knowledge, entertainment and information, is freely accessible to anyone
So, we have the beginnings of point 5... without any of the other points to support it! What I think people who share files are basically doing is putting the IDEA of intangible media having no monetary value before the needs of the real people that still depend on the income from that content!

The file Sharing community is fond of repeating mantra like "Information wants to be free" well I think I have coined the perfect response by saying that what they are are proposing is a "Selective Utopia"!

They want certain obtainable elements of a futuristic utopia without other supporting elements that make it all plausible to a working society, and they are willing to sacrifice the well being and rights of other human beings in order to get those first elements.

They want the parts of the "perfect future" that they can have now even if that will cause hardship and difficulty to the very people trying to create interesting, unique, or simply new content for them because the other parts of the "perfect human utopia" are impossible with our current technology. I honestly think some of them understand this but instead of being sympathetic or trying to find a interim solution, it is simpler to blame large media companies and and ignore the very existence of small, independent content creators because that causes a moral dilemma for them.

In other words, they see us as expendable, much like a poor guy who made the poor choice to wear red on the day he got picked to beam down with the lading party. Problem is, I don't think this will be a reversible trend and I don't think these attitudes will be "undone" once the war with "big media" is over. How will new art be supported in the future? Good question. Its one that doesn't seem to be getting asked... let alone answered.

I have never had a problem with file sharing really,  I do have a problem with the growing lack of respect for the talent of the people that create content. It seems to get worse as time goes by. I am fearful that recorded music, photography, programing and other inherently digital skills will just be seen as valueless in the future, and thats sickening if you understand how much effort can go into becoming good at those things. I don't want file sharing to end... I just want it to grow with a healthy respect for the content being shared and to find ways to support new and unique artist... I realize this is likely a pipe dream at this point but I keep trying.

There is apparently a movement going on to grow file sharing, to legitimize it. The idea being that if enough people do it then it become the legal standard. That makes sense, I am betting it will happen in some form, but I am afraid the people pushing for this haven't really thought it out, at least from the viewpoint of a small independent content creator.

If enough people buy into the idea that they should not have to pay for intangible media, many people stand to loose their livelihood. This goes for photographers, musicians, illustrators, programers, writers, filmmakers, painters, anyone whose work starts out or can eventually be converted into ones and zeroes. 

Sometimes its only a portion of their livelihood, but it could be the difference between being able to continue to create art or not being able to continue to afford the costs associated with it. In any case, taking income away from hard working people that may need it to survive or to continue making the art that others enjoy.

We are not just talking about huge record labels and movie studios here... The same technology that has given rise to file sharing has also empowered artist and programers worldwide to take charge of their own destiny.

The concept of "Pro" and "amateur" is as outdated as the CD and SoundWarehouse. If a person can make $1000 a year off their photography then by god they should $1000 a year off if and don't let ANYONE call them a hobbyist. When was the last time any of us had a job for more than 2-5 years? If Someone can make music for the rest of their life and sell a few thousand downloads a year then its likely that music may end up being the single highest grossing job they will ever have regardless if they never have a "HIT".

That is of course if people continue to apply any value to recorded music...

We may all just end up living in a selectively utopian world and such a person just ends up working extra shifts at the Sack-N-Save because they can't yet heat their house with free power or replicate free food to feed their kids.

Art takes time and effort, it has value. If it is eventually delivered in a digital form... that dosen't mater! If you make a copy you still are receiving the VALUE when you enjoy the work that was done. If the Content creator offers a digital file for free. GREAT! I do, and I will continue to. But if you are asked to support the art by paying a licence... well, until the time that we have invented dilithium reactors, food replicators, and transporters, you have an obligation, especially to independent content creators.

You could say that the way the file sharing community is currently implementing the progression of the march towards their Selective Utopia, Will end up possibly  permanently denying any hope of a Artists Utopia in the foreseeable future.

(Note about the art: The image of The Mona Lisa in a red Star Trek uniform that you see at the top of this post was created especially for this article. I then uploaded it in its basic form to see if it would spread across the internet and to see for myself how often I was credited, linked to, or to see how often the watermark was removed. "Red Shirt Mona Lisa" or "Star Trek Mona Lisa" has traveled far and wide, so far, I haven't come across anyone selling T-shirts made from the art or anything like that, and mostly I have been happy that people leave the watermark. Every once and a while someone will link back to the original or even spends a few moments to find me and ask before using it... So it has been interesting. And, trust me the fact that it is a modest manipulation of one of the worlds most famous paintings is not lost on me. I don't usually do mash-ups, I strive to be as original as I can. So, I find the fact that it has caught on amusing, hopefully others do also).