the youtube video

Week 9:
A) Burgess and Green argue that: ordinary people who become celebrities through their own creative efforts “remain within the systemof celebrity native to, and controlled by, the mass media” (Reader, page 269). Discuss ONE of these arguments giving an example of a YouTube video (embed it into post). Specify chosen argument in your answer.

So for this week, instead of the usual posting, I’ve decided to make a YouTube video to state my opinions!

So one example of a “home made” celebrity who isn’t controlled by the old media would be Luan Legacy.

He talks about anything he wants, he doesn’t rely on media for information, instead, he creates topics which can range from anything that has happened to him in a day.

Here’s one of his videos which I found rather hilarious.

A classic example of how media isn’t controlling this guy right here! He has over 9000 subscribers to his channel, and over 23,000 followers on his twitter account. I can’t seem to think of how he is being controlled by the older forms of media because as said in my earlier video, he’s not flouting copyright laws, he’s not relying on other forms of media for news sources. Instead, he is skillfully using the media to his advantage.

With more people like these, it definitely shows that “home made celebrities” are definitely using creative ways to break out of the system that celebrities are native to. In fact, I’d say they’re actually challenging the mass media to come up with better programmes!


Bullying: not just face to face

Has anyone seen this?

Who’s the bully here? The small guy (Ritchard Gale), or the big guy (Casey Heynes)?

Well, whatever the reason was, I’d like to draw your attention to a bigger issue.

This is bullying that occurs in everyday life. It was fortunately/unfortunately, caught on video.

With the internet, have we brought bullying to another level? Cyber bullying has occurred in many places online. Random trolling on the internet, leaving nasty comments on blogs, forums. Even on formspring, where users get to ask questions, and remain anonymous. Or tumblr, maybe even blogging platforms like wordpress.

The worst part? You’re able to remain anonymous. When you hide behind a screen, anything is possible.

Like the song, Santa Monica, by Savage Garden

“But on the telephone line I am anyone
I am anything I want to be
I could be a supermodel or Norman Mailer
And you wouldn’t know the difference
Or would you?”

You’re able to leave comments that can hurt, you’re able to be an imposter, act as someone else, and hurt somebody.

Does the phrase “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me” still apply in today’s context?

People have committed suicide due to cyber bullying. For various reasons too. Sexual preference, looks, family background, social status.. the list is never-ending. You can read and

This doesn’t just happen to children. A friend of mine, was being cyber bullied. At her workplace. Yes, it even takes place with adults. Some of her colleagues started a facebookgroup, asking people to boycott her. Now, however the problem may be, or seem to be, bullying should never take place. Much less cyber bullying. It’s anonymous, cowardly. A fellow colleague who knew about the group, told my friend about it, and somehow, my friend’s boss got to know about the issue too. I don’t know how grown ups deal with issues like these, but I hope that something can be done.

How then, are we able to stop cyber bullying? Are we even able to stop it? Or, if it’s not possible, should we educate children from young, on how to react to bullying, and cyber bullying? Should they be educated on the consequences of their actions?

Yo ho ho and a bottle of rum

Week 11:
B) Medosch argues that: “piracy, despite being an entirely commercially motivated activity carried out in black or grey markets, fulfills culturally important functions” (Reader, page 318).Discuss ONE of these arguments while giving an example online.

The good, the bad and the ugly. Nobody likes pirates. The only pirate people like is Captain Jack Sparrow, from Pirates of the Caribbean. I’m guessing a large factor is because he is, after all, Johnny Depp. Pirates hijack boats, kill people, steal jewelry and money. They terrorise people. Somalia is one of the most dangerous countries in the world, simply because pirates terrorise the area.

But alas, those are not the only pirates. There are pirates who are seemingly less dangerous, but have the ability to cause damage too! Yup, I’m referring to pirates who make copies of movies, videos, video games, and sell them off at a cheap price.

Who has…
1) bought a pirated DVD/VCD/video game etc.
2) watched a movie from an illegal source? Torrents, DVDs…
3) played video games off a pirated web host, or on an illegal stream server?

This list isn’t exhaustive.

I found this images online
Credits to 

File sharing
Credits to Tim Groeneveld

As the above images state, by making a copy, you aren’t stealing the movie. But what about the money earned from it?  Shouldn’t it go to the producers and actors?  Why is it going to you?

People are wondering why these few dollars would impact the film industry. But statistics don’t lie. The movie industry lost US $25 billion worldwide to date (Movie Piracy Losses by Country 2011). These few dollars add up to billions lost.

A total of 141,030 jobs were lost in the US due to piracy (Ernesto 2006). How would you feel if ALL of your family members lost their jobs due to piracy? And you were the one contributing to their loss of a job because you joined your friends for a stay over and you guys watched pirated DVDs all night long?

That changes things doesn’t it?

However, with the cons of piracy, some the pros too. Medosch (2008) argues that “piracy… fulfills culturally important functions”, and this can be expanded in the next few points

1) By watching pirated movies, you’re  able to obtain knowledge once not available to you (Medosch 2008).

2) The “poor” will have equal access to what the “rich” have. Why should the rich be allowed access to information, while the poor are deprived? Piracy thus, helps close the gap between social classes.

3) By obtaining newfound knowledge, it does close the gap between culture, race and country. We feel more connected with the rest of the world, watching, reading, doing what they’re able to do. Like Medsoch (2008) argues, it’s not always about the money. We now have unlimited access to everything.

4) Piracy has created jobs for the jobless and uneducated. What they’re doing may not be right, but what other choices do these people have?

Take Indonesia as an example. Children with tattered clothes and no shoes are selling pirated DVDs. What other choices did they have? With no education, with no money for education, how can the poor be educated? And because Indonesia’s government is corrupted, the poor do not get help. Surely it’s the government’s job to help these people. And in a really warped way, does this then mean the government has played a part in piracy too? At least, with the small amount of money earned, they can support themselves, and hopefully be “less poor”. It is a naïve thought, but fact is: piracy has helped create jobs, as much as it has destroyed jobs.

Most may argue that the cons outweigh the pros, just because money is lost, jobs are lost, people aren’t being ethical.

What are your thoughts on piracy? Do you agree that in some way, it has helped the world move forward together? For those who want a good read on piracy, here’s a link. The comments made gives great insight too.


Ernesto 2006, Torrent Freak, viewed 19 May 2011,.” target=”_blank”>

Medosch, A 2008, ‘Paid in Full: Copyright, Piracy and the Real Currency of Cultural Production’, in Deptforth. TV Diaries II: Pirate Strategies, London, Deptforth TV, pp. 73-97

Movie Piracy Losses by Country 2011, Havocscope Black Markets, viewed 19 May 2011, .

The CC License

Week 10:
Following week 10 tutorial’s exercise, explain why you chose the Creative Commons license that you added to your blog and discuss the relevance (or not) of adding the license.

See the little rectangle on the right of my blog with small circles and random drawings? That’s my Creative Commons (CC) License.

The CC License came about when people felt that the Copyright license was too much of a hassle to go through, and people did not know when certain works could be used, in one way of another. An example would be wanting to use a song for a school project, but you’re not sure if you can, because the song is copyrighted.

That’s when the CC License comes into place. It allows users to know what they can, or cannot do with each article of work. The CC Licenses allows authors to share their works, yet retain certain rights (Medosch 2008). It makes things easier now, doesn’t it? This CC License saves people time of having doing checks! You’re also able access creative works without being sued for copyright (Garcelon 2009)!

One of the main issues to using the CC license is that others may edit your work, improve on it, and sell it commercially (Garcelon 2009). Would you be ok with that?

I’m honestly not comfortable with the idea of letting someone use my work for commercial purposes, but I’m fine with them editing my work. Thus the reason for my CC License.

My rationale: if someone can improve on my work, why not? We’re trying to make the world a better place to be in, for it to be connected. This is my way of helping, allowing someone to use it my work and improve on it. We’ll all benefit in that way, especially in the areas of research.

For me to have come up with certain works, I would have leeched ideas from many places, then put them together. Take the idea of Reese’s peanut butter cups.  They were formed by peanut butter and chocolate. I’d be humbled if someone took my idea and proposed a better one, and thanked me for being his/her inspiration.

Connectivity has helped make the world a better place. There is even a World Creativity and Innovation Week where people come together to celebrate the new ideas that have been shared. During the week, people are also encouraged to put together 2 or more ideas, and come up with something even better.

What I’m not ok with, is when someone uses my works, makes it better, then sells it for commercial purposes. Worst still, if they did not credit me in any way. Should I not get a part of your profits since I was the one who came up with the work? All you had to do was to edit it, and make it better. Editing is much easier compared to coming up with something entirely different. While I value interactivity and connectivity, I do not wish to encourage plagarism, what’s more, for a profit.

Here are the descriptions of the varying licenses. Alternatively, you can click here to have a look.

Creative Commons License
1) attribution CC BY
+ You can make copies, remix and distribute the owner’s, be it for research or commercial purposes.
– Do not make it seem as if the owner is endorsing your work.
Keep in mind: Attribute work in the way that owner has specified.

Creative Commons License
2) Attribution-ShareAlike CC BY-SA
+ You can make copies, remix and distribute the owner’s, be it for research or commercial purposes.
– Do not make it seem as if the owner is endorsing your work.
Keep in mind: Attribute work in the way that owner has specified. When you come up with your own “remix”, or adaptation, the owner should be credited too. You may only distribute your work under the same, or similar license.

Creative Commons License
3) Attribution-NoDerivs CC BY-ND
+ You can make copies and distribute the owner’s work, be it for research or commercial purposes.
– Do not alter or edit the work in any way.
– Do not make it seem as if the owner is endorsing your work.
Keep in mind: Attribute work in the way that owner has specified. When you come up with your own “remix”, or adaptation, the owner should be credited too. You may only distribute your work under the same, or similar license.

Creative Commons License
4) Attribution-NonCommercial CC BY-NC
+ You can make copies, remix and distribute the owner’s work.
– Do not use this work for commercial purposes
– Do not make it seem as if the owner is endorsing your work.
Keep in mind: Attribute work in the way that owner has specified.

Creative Commons License
5) Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike CC BY-NC-SA
+ You  can make copies, remix and distribute the owner’s work.
– Do not use this work for commercial purposes
– Do not make it seem as if the owner is endorsing your work.
Keep in mind: Attribute work in the way that owner has specified. When you come up with your own “remix”, or adaptation, the owner should be credited too. You may only distribute your work under the same, or similar license.

Creative Commons License
6) Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs CC BY-NC-ND
+ You  can make copies and distribute the owner’s work
– Do not use this work for commercial purposes
– Do not make it seem as if the owner is endorsing your work.
– Do not alter or edit the work in any way.
Keep in mind: Attribute work in the way that owner has specified.

ANY conditions can be waived, as long as you get permission from the owner personally.

So as you can see, number 1 is the most flexible license. It’s as if you’ve stuck gold if you chance upon a piece of work with this license. On the other hand, number 6 is the most restrictive. You can’t make any changes to the work; the work is not to be used for commercial purposes… and depending on how you feel about people using your work, editing it, be it for commercial or other purposes, it’ll affect the license you choose.


Creative Commons 2011, Creative Commons, California, viewed 20 may 2011 from  <;.

Garcelon, M 2009, ‘An Information Commons? Creative Commons and Public Access to Cultural Creations’, New Media & Society, pp. 1307-1326.

Medosch, A, 2008 ‘Paid in Full: Copyright, Piracy and the Real Currency of Cultural Production’, in Deptforth. TV Diaries II: Pirate Strategies, London, pp. 73-97.

uses of technology

I don’t know how many of you read other comments by my readers, but this was regarding the post i made on technology. You can view it here

A reader left a really thoughtful comment, and I feel the need to post it here.

“…the more important issue about the advancement of technology is the problem of social isolation. Are people becoming more socially awkward with most of their time spent in the cyber world? How will this affect our society in the future?”

What are your thoughts?

Personally, I feel this is linked to the fact we make use of technology to replace regular meet ups with friends. When I’m waiting for the bus, I text, I’m in my own world, I listen to music. I don’t even bother looking at those around me.

I don’t feel it’s good for a person’s development, as we rely more on technology to live our lives, rather than enjoying the environment around us. We don’t stop to appreciate the beauty of the world in its glory. Let’s say the sun is setting. Instead of gazing and appreciating it, we bring our cameras up and start snapping away, then posting it on twitter or facebook.

I wonder how many hours each of us spend on our mobile phones, music players, or the computer. Maybe it’s time we cut back on it, and start noticing people around us. (=


I’ve made some changed to how the page looks, leave a comment and let me know what you think! Used 3 columns instead of 2 as you’d have to scroll a lot for the 2 column option

Eg: too girly, too many columns..


Technology: make or break?

Burning question in my mind.

Does technology, keep people together? Or does it pull them apart.

Here are 2 scenarios.

scenario A

A father goes overseas to work. With the “invention” of 3G, he is able to make calls to his family using a data plan, with the help of Viber, an application for the iPhone. Applications like FaceTime is also used, and he is able to look at his family while speaking to them.

scenario B

X and Z used to meet regularly for supper, because it was their only way of communication, besides talking on the phone. With technology, they now can message each other, update each other on their whereabouts (foursquare), random bits of information (twitter), and send each other pictures immediately after taking them (whatsapp, bbm, sms). They no longer see the need to meet as they are able to update each other on their lives. Messaging each other becomes a weekly affair, or as and when they are free to text.

How does this work then? This thing, this.. seemingly intangible thing, otherwise known as technology. Why I say it’s intangible? Sure, you can hold a phone, carry your laptop, use a satellite.. but how does the information get transmitted? How does your word document get sent to another person?

Weirdly, this technology may just be the thing that pulls people apart. How many of you have friends who got dumped over a text message, or a phone call? What happened to being sincere in whatever you do? Or wishing the person a happy birthday over a text?

While sending text messages and making phone calls are good, does it help create an imaginary closeness with that particular person? You may be able to talk on the phone all day, but it’s really different from meeting the person, in flash, having a conversation.

It’s been said that only 7% of what is said in a dialogue is verbal content (Booth 2008). The rest of our message lies in the way we act. Our tone, facial expression, the way we sit.

In this way then, how do we put our emotions into text, or pictures? Sure, we have emoticons to help, but do they accurately reflect our feelings? Not everything can be represented with emoticons. I, for one, prefer meeting with my friends, because friendship is important, and technology just cannot replace the physical contact.

I used to joke with my friends. With technology, we would not need to meet. We used to meet up weekly for a game of Mahjong, where they would head to my place and stay for the night. However, with Viwawa, an internet portal which has other games, along with Mahjong, we may just agree for a time to meet up online, after all, we can always chat in viwawa, and if we want to look at each other, there’s always group chat in Skype!

Look at this post. How many applications and services have I listed? Of these, how many of them do you use to keep in touch with your family and friends? Does it act as a substitute, or does it aid your relationship?

That said, it is up to each individual to decide how they want to use the technology presented to them. You can use it as the tool for social interaction, or, you can use it as a tool to aid you in keeping close contact with your friends. (=

What’s your take on this?


Booth, C. W, 2008, It is What You Say, Not The Way You Say It, viewed 10 May 2011, <;.

Rulture Cremix


Oh year! Remix culture! Tried my hand at remixing words, obviously now I know it’s not my forte, and I should concentrate on doing other things..

Music has been revolutionized in a couple of ways, from the sharing of music files online (Russell, Ito, Richmond & Tuters 2008), people creating mix tapes, or even putting two songs together to form a “new” song, otherwise known as remixing.

How does this remix culture affect the music industry then? People still listen to songs, people are able to earn money from remixes, music is still being made.. BUT.. this is what we didn’t know! The music industry’s revenue has gone from US $14.32 billion, to US $9.65 in a span of 7 years (2000 – 2006) (Russell 2008).

That’s more than a 50% drop…. Yikes. Not sure how it happened, but for the next trivia, I can come up with a few reasons..

The sale of CDs has declined from 942million to 614 million, also from 2000 – 2006 (Russell 2008).  Reasons.. hmm

1) YouTube. Why buy CDs when you can search for the song on YouTube? You can listen to it all day long..

2) Wanna listen to your fav song on the go? This website allows one to download just the audio bits from YouTube.

3) Torrents. Think that YouTube’s quality isn’t that good? Torrents allow one to download songs in the original high-quality form..

4) file sending over msn, email. If you plop your CD into your computer, you can ‘drag’ the songs out onto your desktop, and play it with and music player (VLC, iTunes, Windows Media Player). That same way, you can send the song file to your friend, or upload it on YouTube (see the vicious cycle now?)

What about remixing songs? Did that kill the music industry? Or did it help make the industry better?

I’d love to hear your thoughts…

I feel that remixing has actually made the music industry better. I don’t have any statistics with regards to an increase of band popularity or sales due to remixes, so my opinions are on a personal level. I know damn well that without remixing, I wouldn’t have heard the name of many songs, and bands, and I would have never become a fan!

Take the band, Norwegian Recycling. I first heard their song How Six Songs Collide, when a friend sent it to me.  And from there, I went on to search the titles of the 6 songs, and subsequently went on to search for the singers and bands… I’ve yet to buy their album as I’ve never seen it in stores, but I sure would.

One friend, Joshua Simon, has been doing remixes. By himself! Yea, it’s really cool. He did the beats, even made videos… he has a great voice, and his remixes don’t cover just new songs but even older songs.. and I feel, hey if you mix both together, “old” songs won’t be forgotten!

Here are a few of my favourites.. (=

<iframe width=”640″ height=”390″ src=”; frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen>

Remixes provide a fresh approach to old songs, new twist, sometimes a new melody… and the singer really does affect the portrayal of songs… well, that’s my opinion. Not convinced that remixes are better? Let me hear your thoughts!


Russell A., Ito M., Richmond T., & Tuters, M. 2008, ‘Culture: Media Convergence and Networked Culture’, in Kazys Vernelis (ed.) Networked Publics, Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, pp.43-76.

Mad about Bauhaus

I don’t know how many people got a chance to actually realise how design can make a whole difference to how things look.

While getting my diploma, I had the chance to do a few design modules, and I sure loved them to bits. Hey, designing over writing, any time! I first learnt about Bauhaus. A concept, a school, a design, a font, a simplistic nature.

I was told to do a brochure based on Bauhaus, and unfortunately I’m not able to share it in soft copy because my computer erased all my data (back up your files regularly!). Doing the project made me realise how easy, yet difficult it was to learn the concept. Simplicity, design. Form, function.

Three primary colours: red, yellow, blue. 3 shapes: triangle, rectangle (or square), circle. Add in two most basic colours, black and white, and you’ve got yourself a concept.

by AB Design

my poster looked somewhat like this, except that instead of colour clashing, the words were in black.

In another module, we were told to do a website based on the title “Journey”. I decided to do a journey on Bauhaus, as I was intrigued by its nature. I did my research, focusing on the timeline of Bauhaus, from when the school started, till it closed, the teachers, the types of art in school. It was the best decision ever. The design had to be kept simple, the work I was doing was something I was actually interested in and has a passion for. Hard work paid off, and I got an A for the project.

It amazed me, how Walter Gropius could manage to come up with something so simple yet beautiful: Bauhaus.

Here’s some information which I thought was interesting, focusing on the school. (=


1919: Bauhaus was founded by German Architect, Walter Gropius. Bauhaus was a school and combined elements of arts and design.

1925: The school moved from Weimar to Bessau

1928: Gropius stepped down as director, Hannes Meyer took over

1930: Meyer stepped down due to pressure from the right-wing government. He was replaced by Ludwig Mies van der Rohe There was political instability in Germany, and Miles relocated the school to Berlin.

1933: The school closed down.


Walter Gropius – founder of Bauhaus

Paul Klee – specialised in book binding and stained glass

Wassily Kandinsky – used geometrical elements and encouraged “free painting”

Josef Albers – introduced students in the school to the principals of handicrafts. Designed furniture and glass

Laszlo Moholy-Nagy – Headed the typography workshop and metalworking studio


Colour theory, metal work, typography (hence the font Bauhaus), weaving, pottery, textiles

How many buildings have we seen? And how many have been influenced by Bauhaus?

Here are a few images of architecture  which have been influenced by Bauhaus.

Credits to Jeffrey Howe

Credits to Peter Visiontay

Photo taken by me at Docklands.

Next time you see anything of interest, take a step, and think about what could have possibly influenced that particular design. It could be anything. From a vase, to a handbag, the interior of the house, brochures, the list goes on.

I hope that there’s someone out there who loves Bauhaus as much as I do. I’d love to do a / go on a geek discussion / excursion with you!

Fonts: a love hate relationship

Put your hands up if you actually feel that fonts make a big difference!

Personally speaking, I HATE Times New Roman. It’s a Serif font, which means letters come with squiggly bits at the end of every letter. It’s the standard font in the USA, and pretty much everywhere else, especially for reports.

Here are some examples of serif fonts (in their own font). I typed them out and took a screenshot.

I prefer sans-serif fonts! Cleaner, easier, prettier! Arial and Helvetica are my personal favourites.
Here are some examples of sans-serif (in their own font), which I typed out too.

Does it matter? Serif, Sans serif? What’s the big idea? As long as it’s readable (unlike wing dings), it’s fine, right?

It actually makes a difference.
Serif is usually used for printed work, because the little lines and squiggles help make letters more individual, more recognizable. It makes each letter more distinctive.

Sans serif, on the other hand, is better for online work. This sounds really technical, but printed words have at least 1000dpi (dots per inch), while online words has a dpi of less than 100. Because the resolution is smaller, it makes serif characters harder to read, due to its complex shape (lines and squiggles).

FYI: for images, printed images have at least 300dpi, online images are usually 72dpi

FONTSPEAK: which font is the most used for brands?
-durmroll- HELVETICA! HOORAY, A SAN SERIF FONT! –throws confetti in the air-

I won’t go on about the research of the most commonly used font, but here are some really recognizable brands using Helvetica. Clicking on the images opens in a new tab. All photos are from the web page itself.


So the next time you look at notices, designs, or anything that uses lettering, stop and ponder if the font used helped to make reading better. (= If not, how else could the message be conveyed better?

Ps: yes, I’m really glad my font layout in this blog is sans-serif.