Category Archives: Photos

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
piracy
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.

References

Ernesto 2006, Torrent Freak, viewed 19 May 2011,.” target=”_blank”>http://torrentfreak.com/the-cost-of-movie-piracy-to-the-us/.

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, http://www.havocscope.com/movie-piracy-losses-by-country/ .

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.

References

Creative Commons 2011, Creative Commons, California, viewed 20 may 2011 from  <http://creativecommons.org/licenses/&gt;.

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.

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?

Wrong.
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.

Nestle


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.

Pretty and useful

Attribution Some rights reserved by daniel_iversen

This image sums up interactivity on Web 2.0