DC has launched the one day Batman graphic novel sale, and sure enough Long Halloween is included as are fan favourites Year One, Dark Knight Returns, The Killing Joke, and Hush, meaning you can pick up digital versions of some of the greatest Batman stories ever told for $3.
Good news for those with Bruce Wayne tastes but discount budgets: The celebration of Batman’s 75th anniversary continues this week with the largest digital sale ever from DC Comics.
My favourite book of all time, The Long Halloween has each issue available for only $0.99 each (not sure if the collected version is on sale or not, but it comes in around $16.99). Worth every penny.
Update: The one day graphic novel sale has launched, and sure enough Long Halloween is included as are fan favourites Year One, Dark Knight Returns, The Killing Joke, and Hush, meaning you can pick up digital versions of some of the greatest Batman stories ever told for $3.
YouTube sensation Michelle Phan, whose beauty and style videos have earned her 6.7 million subscribers, is being sued for copyright infringement over the music in some of those clips. Ultra Records — which has been home to popular EDM acts like Kaskade, Deadmau5, and Calvin Harris — says Phan has regularly used (and profited from) music performed by its DJs without permission. Ultra hit Phan with a lawsuit last week, claiming that the YouTube star has repeatedly been told she doesn’t possess the necessary rights to use tracks like Kaskade’s “4 AM” in her videos, but apparently those warnings have fallen on deaf ears.
I’m of two minds on this one. On the one hand I think going after people who use un-licensed music in their YouTube videos is a bit silly (and yes, I am one of those people). If someone is making what essentially amounts to a home movie and happens to use a popular song, then hosts it via YouTube (since it’s the easiest method on the internet to host video) they really shouldn’t be flagged by YouTube for copyright infringement.
On the other hand, if Phan is making money off her videos (which she probably is) she most certainly should be paying to license the music. That said, music licensing is such a colossal clusterfuck that an indie artist like Phan, regardless of how much she pulls in from YouTube probably wouldn’t be able to pull it off on her own. That being said, she could use some of her profits to license music from places like Premium Beat or iStock which have half-decent stock music (though obviously not as recognizable to “the kids”).
But, here’s the most important wrinkle:
For his part, Kaskade is firmly in Phan’s corner and says he has no control over the legal battle.
If the artist doesn’t care, why is she being sued? This is a prime example of our broken copyright system which is supposed to protect the artist, but in fact simply protects the bean-counters.
Either way, Ultra Records would be better off going after people who are postingfull albums and the like.
Maniac Mansion revolutionized the point and click adventure genre and spawned a number of hits for LucasArts (then LucasFilm), like Secret of Monkey Island and direct sequel Day of the Tentacle.
Given that it’s from a distant era, when all concept art was hand-drawn (as it is here), you’d be forgiven for thinking it reads like a piece of ancient video game lore. Interesting, perhaps, but a little crusty.
But it isn’t.
I loved “Day of the Tentacle”. A very cool piece of gaming history.
Simpsons World, to be exact: the digital platform, unveiled for TV reporters in Los Angeles yesterday, that FXX network will use to take maximum advantage of acquiring the entire 25-season run of The Simpsons. Accessible on the web and through apps (you also need service from a participating cable provider), it will allow you to watch any Simpsons episode you want, any time.
I’d say it’s about fucking time but you’ll notice you need a cable provider meaning while this is a step in the right direction, it’s not far enough. I always wished “The Simpsons” had something similar to South Park Studios (though, SPS recently transitioned to Hulu, so it’s now a mere shadow of itself).
As someone who loves referencing his favourite tv shows I always thought content creators were missing out on a great opportunity to allow me to share these references. A while back I had the idea for a site that would allow you to “quote” your favourite show; grab a 5-10 second clip of your favourite line and post it to Twitter or Facebook. When your friends clicked through they’d hear the funny line, which would remind them of the funny episode and low and behold there was a link to watch the whole thing for 99 cents (or better yet, free with adverts). Creators could be leveraging our pop-culture references into literal cash.
Think of how much money they’d make!?
Instead I have to rely on crappy YouTube clips, 90% of which get pulled by Fox because they still have their heads up their asses and think it’s 1992.
The day after “Endless Appetizers” was announced, I went to TGI Friday’s in the Brooklyn neighborhood of Sheepshead Bay. I wanted to challenge the hubris of a company co-opting the infinite for a marketing gimmick.
I wanted to demand accountability from copywriters. I wanted to call their bluff and eat appetizers until they kicked me out, to seek the limit of this supposedly limitless publicity stunt.
I soon learned the limit does not exist.
However, although we understand the complaints, it doesn’t necessarily mean we’re going to do anything about them. Believe me that’s not arrogance on our part, but the fact is we’re not wedding DJs taking requests, and for good reason, because no good telly in the history of man was ever created that way. You have to make the programme you want to make, and people then vote with the on or off button. So although not many on Final Gear liked the electric car, we actually loved it, and we’ll make more of those any time we get the right idea.
I don’t drive, nor do I particularly like cars. But I watch, and re-watch Top Gear religiously. Not because I need to know about the latest super car, but rather because the three hosts are so incredibly funny, and the show is so incredibly well made.
Yes, it’s a bit silly. But so was Monty Python.
I will start with this: I don’t know Zach Braff, and I have no idea if he’s a nice guy or a heel. I saw Garden State and wasn’t nuts about it, and I’m not a huge Scrubs fan. I’m also jealous of his New York apartment which I once saw in maybe the New York Times? It was beautiful. So basically overall I’m the kind of guy who is complaining a lot about Zach Braff right now.
But seriously, people like me: quit complaining about Zach Braff. Especially his Kickstarter. You’re being dicks.
Full disclosure: I like Zach Braff. I liked Garden State. I helped fund Wish I Was Here and I liked that too.
Regardless of that, everything Jesse says is spot on. I don’t know why everyone is kicking the shit out of Braff. Sure, he put his foot in his mouth a few times along the way, but at least the guy is being 100% honest, and I bet if you worked hard on something that was purely to make people happy, only to have a bunch of anonymous dick bags make fun of you, and what you worked so hard to create, you’d be a little sore too.
Finally, if you’re not into the movie that’s cool. But don’t judge something you haven’t seen. If you see the movie and hate it, that’s cool. But if you’re just writing it off having not seen it then, well, you’re being a dick. Also, I guarantee that his movie is better than that dude’s potato salad.
Not to spoil the article but this really gets to the heart of it, and why I think this whole thing is so important:
More importantly: directly audience-funded creative work is by far a net positive for society. It fosters deeper and more important work - there’s a big difference between your relationship to something you voluntary give money to and something you’re willing to show up to a theater with friends for. It reduces the risk inherent in any creative undertaking for the creative people. It makes it so that folks can spend more of their time making and less begging big corporations for money. It gives creative people control, with the backing of people who like their work, rather than giving that control to someone who wants to sell stuff. All of these are good, good things.
Let’s break the idea that this is a matter of charity. No one pities Zach Braff. He’s rich and handsome and doing well for himself. But tens of thousands of people love his work, and they want more of it. They’re willing to pay for it. And you don’t have to go see it. So what the heck’s wrong with that?
Netflix is enormously popular in Canada with millions using the online video service. While the Canadian version of Netflix has improved the scope of available titles since it launched, there are still differences with the U.S. service, leading some subscribers to use virtual private networks to mask their address and access U.S. Netflix. Are those subscribers “stealing” something? The Globe and Mail’s Simon Houpt apparently thinks so.
Speaking of the “grey zone”…
Michael Geist makes an argument that circumventing geo-locks not only doesn’t break any laws, it really has no real negative side effects for those involved.
Which just goes to show; the greedy corporations who make these stupid license deals should stop putting up barriers for people like me who want to give them my money to watch their content. Instead I’m now giving my money to a third party service instead so I can get around their stupid restrictions.
One is a respected Canadian broadcaster who uses a popular VPN service to jack into the U.S. version of Netflix so his kids can watch shows that aren’t legally available here. Another is a theatre critic who doesn’t have cable and is aghast at the idea of handing over more than $100 a month to Rogers Cable just so he can watch Game of Thrones on HBO Canada: Like millions around the world who have made that show the most popular one to pirate, he’d rather just download it from a torrent site.
Then there’s the newspaper editor who loved Downton Abbey so much that, last January, after Season 4 began airing on Masterpiece Theatre in the United States, she hopped on over to Pirate Bay to binge on the new episodes rather than waiting another five months for them to show up on Vision TV here in Canada.
All of them make their living from the content-creation economy. And yet they all think it’s fine to steal content that somebody else created.
You’d be surprised how much of a norm this is. At least I’ve never been hypocritical about it…
For what it’s worth, I’m now consuming most of my content via Netflix and Hulu (which is kind of in a legal grey zone since I don’t live in the US), as well as purchasing iTunes Season Passes for shows I love (that also don’t cost $60). It’s far easier than stealing, and I can feel good about knowing that I’m doing the right thing.
Well, except for Top Gear, but that’s only because all the music gets swapped out.
So what, exactly, do consumers have to fear? To find out, Popular Science chose 10 of the most common claims about GMOs and interviewed nearly a dozen scientists. Their collective answer: not much at all.
People’s fear of GMO foods is a lot like their fear of “chemicals” in their food (hey guys, you know salt? Yeah, that’s a chemical), which mostly stems from a misunderstanding of science.
Are all GMOs good? No, of course not; but they’re not all bad either. Hell, you’ve all been eating seedless watermelon for years and I don’t hear you complaining.
Music streaming service Spotify is at long last gearing up to launch in Canada, and they’re inviting some of those that have expressed interest to try it out first. The invitations will be sent out to a selection of those Canadians that have signed up at Spotify’s Canada page, and users of the latest version of the iOS app can join the invitation queue from right within the app.
Because, you know, we haven’t waited long enough…
I for one have been begging for this for, literally four years!
It’s one of the great tragedies of cinema history that Ingmar Bergman never directed the big-budget superhero movie he was clearly born to make. Luckily, the Internet has picked up the slack and righted the wrongs of history by showing us what a movie version of DC’s The Flash would have looked like if the famous Swedish director had been behind the camera.
Sidebar: the episode dives into the history of smallpox, which if you find interesting you should read Richard Preston’s “The Demon in the Freezer”. Not only will you find out how we eradicated the disease, but why we want to make sure we never ever have to do so again (spoiler alert: it’s a shitty fucking disease).
The moviegoing experience—and even how we discover films to watch—has been undergoing a steady change. Studios have turned their attention to blockbusters, and so too have multiplexes, with smaller independent films or arthouse efforts often arriving on VOD first before getting a cursory, limited run. But even the presentation of movies has changed, with digital now the favored format, even at film festivals, while seeing a print on the big screen is becoming a rarer experience, usually one relegated to specialty houses. It’s hard to find the right analogy for this evolution, and change in values on how we experience cinema, but Christopher Nolan puts it thusly: “The theatrical window is to the movie business what live concerts are to the music business—and no one goes to a concert to be played an MP3 on a bare stage.”
I am a huge promoter of going to the theatre to see films; in fact it’s pretty much the only way I can watch a film and truly enjoy it in todays modern, constantly-distracted world. So it frustrates me to no end when, despite living in one of the biggest city’s in all of Canada, the film I want to see is only playing in one theatre for matinee screenings only, while Transformers 2 is occupy 4 screens at a 24 screen cinema. Or worse; when you finally find a theatre playing the film you want to see and it’s a piss poor experience; lights left on, stale food, distorted sound, crappy, dim, picture (seriously; ever since the switch to digital projection everything looks way too dim). And of course then there’s 3D, the most cynical cash grab of them all. And they wonder why people don’t go to movies anymore…
I for one wouldn’t mind seeing a return to road-show style presentations; turning the cinematic experience into one akin to going to see live theatre, complete with overtures, intermissions, programs, and applause.
“I get a little upset when I hear how hard my industry jumps into action, sparing neither time, manpower or resources, as soon as someone even hints at potential loss to the crown estate,” Alexander notes.
“Piracy has NOT been proven to hurt box-office numbers, on the contrary, several studies say it may have boosted the bottom line,” she adds.
Yup. In fact, thanks to movie piracy, I was one of the most cine-literate high-school students you would have met. It introduced me to a whole range of filmmakers I’d never had gotten a chance to explore, and subsequently purchased much of their work once I was no longer a student and had disposable income.
In recent years the movie industry has poured hundreds of millions of dollars into expensive anti-piracy measures, nearly all of which are counterproductive according to Alexander.
For example, as a German living in Hollywood she can’t watch German news online due to geographical restrictions and the same is true for U.S. shows when she’s visiting Germany. But thanks to the pirates, Hollywood director can easily bypass these restrictions.
“But guess what, for every IP block, DRM and who-knows-what security feature Hollywood spends thousands of dollars and hundreds of hours on, some piracy kid will undo it for free and within a couple of minutes.”
This is also frustrating. I’ve spent most of the last year trying to watch all my media legitimately through streaming site. However you quickly start to realize just how frustrating geo-restrictions and licensing deals ruin the experience.
I worked on a show that was broadcast only in the US and the only way I could watch my episode legally would be to set up a US iTunes account with a US credit card and purchase through them.
Last night I wanted to watch Robot Chicken; you can stream full episodes on the Adult Swim site, but it requires you to entire your (US) cable provider. There’s simply no legal way to stream the show in Canada.
I want to give you my money, but you’re actively going out of your way to make sure I can’t! It’s totally absurd. There’s no longer any excuse for a film or tv show not to be available to stream online legally. The technology is there. The only thing stopping it is absurd license agreements; you know, the things that benefit corporations, not artists.
The movie director uses pirate sites to grab movies that are relevant for an upcoming meeting for example, something which has saved her on a few occasions.
“I cannot tell you how often my ass was saved by some torrent site in those situations. And I assume that 99% of my Hollywood filmmaker colleagues or their poor assistants have found themselves on a piracy site for just that reason (if they deny it, they’re lying. The end.)”
The reality is everyone pirates; call it entitlement, call it greed, call it whatever you want but it’s the reality. It’s not going to go away until you make the legal option as painless and friction free as the illegal option.
The music industry (more or less) understands that. Time for movies and TV to get on board as well.
The bottom line when people talk about all the reasons, you know the biggest reason? It stopped being fun. It just stopped being fun. It really wasn’t. That’s a big deal to me. It may sound like “Why do you have to have fun to go to work?” I don’t know. I like to be in a good mood. The ratio of bullshit to the fun part of doing the work was really starting to get out of whack.
Great interview with one of my favourite filmmakers.
I want to focus on my favorite visual update in Yosemite — the dock icons. Before Yosemite, Apple maintained a system for icon design through a checklist of mostly unstated and understood guidelines paired with a few specific recommendations in the Human Interface Guidelines (HIG). With Yosemite, that system becomes more consistent, and regular, yet the HIG remains silent on the specifics.
Pink Floyd can confirm that they are releasing a new album “The Endless River” in October 2014. It is an album of mainly ambient and instrumental music based on the 1993/4 Division Bell sessions which feature David Gilmour, Nick Mason and Richard Wright. The album is produced by David Gilmour with Phil Manzanera, Youth and recording engineer Andy Jackson. Work is still in progress, but more details to come at the end of the Summer.
I hate to link to a Facebook post, but this is super exciting.
The Associated Press reports that Lloyd Webber will re-conceive the character of Rum Tum Tugger as a rapping street cat. “I’ve come to the conclusion that … maybe Eliot was the inventor of rap,” he said, referencing poet T.S. Eliot. The composer also indicated that he had returned to revise other parts of the musical that premiered in London in 1981. The return of Cats will play a 12-week season beginning Dec. 6.
The vicious reaction to the Kickstarter campaign nearly melted the internet. He was, it was said, suckering people of modest means to donate instead of invest; he had gap financing from a studio; he was stealing potential donors from needier projects; he should use his own money. Although he answered the criticism—the financing was a bridge loan; a lot of his backers were new to Kickstarter; he didn’t have $5 million, and no director puts in that much of his own money—he ultimately had to tune out. “I learned not to read a lot of it,” he says now. “There’s places on the web that what they’re selling is snark and meanness.” He won’t name them, citing another lesson he’s learned, which is “Don’t poke the bear.”
I never understood the intense backlash to Braff’s Kickstarter campaign, and being a huge fan of Garden State I donated without hesitation.
I also don’t understand the negative response to the film (mostly by people who haven’t yet seen it). I have, and while it’s similar to his last film that’s not a bad thing since his first film was so great. Woody Allen has been making the same film for 40 years and it’s working out pretty great for him.
There are a few points to make here, all of which deserve close attention. First, breastfeeding is not beautiful. Call me a heartless cactus, but there are many “natural” acts that involve a mother and her newborn that are also not beautiful, such as changing a diaper. If I don’t want to see a random mother and child in the artful exchange of excrement, I also don’t want to see bare boobies on my screen. Second, until a child is of age, I draw enormous outrage with publicly exposing such private moments for the world to see (and yes, 500 friends is in fact, “THE WORLD”). And lastly, feminists everywhere should find a better cause. I hear global warming is all the rage these days.
While I agree with those who argue there’s some hypocrisy about what Facebook will and will not take down, I have to agree with the dishmaster when she says that I fail to see the beauty in the act, the awkwardness of publicly posting images of your child before they can administer consent, and the misplaced outrage.
But, this is the internet. Everyone’s got the right to shout their opinions from the rooftops (myself included).
The ingredient is a new “designer salt” whose crystals are shaped and sized in a way that reduces the amount of sodium consumers ingest when they munch. PepsiCo hopes the powdery salt, which it is still studying and testing with consumers, will cut sodium levels 25% in its Lay’s Classic potato chips. The new salt could help reduce sodium levels even further in seasoned Lay’s chips like Sour Cream & Onion, PepsiCo said, and it could be used in other products like Cheetos and Quaker bars.
Midnight Rider director Randall Miller and producers Jody Savin and Jay Sedrish have been charged with involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass in Wayne County, Georgia superior court following the death of camera assistant Sarah Jones, it was announced on Thursday.
Jones was struck and killed by a train last February on the Wayne County, Georgia set of the Gregg Allman biopic. Following that, the Wayne County sheriff’s office and the NTSB were among the agencies investigating the incident. The sheriff’s office turned its findings over to the district attorney’s office in late April, with the former letting the DA decide whether to file charges in the matter. Wayne County detective Joe Gardner presented the case to the grand jury on Wednesday.
Good. It is no longer acceptable to put crew safety in jeopardy.
Speaking about the return of the series, co-creator, writer and executive producer Steven Moffat said: “A special, plus a new series of three episodes - it’s a record-breaking run!! Of course, it’s far too early to say what’s coming, but we’re reasonably confident that the very next thing to happen to Sherlock and John, is the very last thing you’d expect ….”
While I applaud the mayor for finally opening up about his substance abuse, as well as his admission of use of illegal substances and that he desperately needed to seek help.
What bothers me though is that he thinks that he should get off scott free because he’s “atoned”. What he did was not only morally reprehensible, it was illegal, and if he is serious about getting better and not just saving face he needs to step down from his role as mayor and get out of the current mayoral race.