Thursday, November 07, 2013

Vote for Comment of the Week

This week's contenders...

Student #1 has left a new comment on your post "Stuff To Ponder: Bring Back The Claques":

This is a really interesting article. I didn't know that fact about Claques, and I can see how people in the 19th century would see a need for these people. I find the point about audiences not knowing when to applaud during a symphony very accurate. A lot of people don't know enough about that culture to know that it is poor etiquette to applaud between movements, and that applause should be held until the end of a piece. Just like anything else in the world, the only way for people to know and understand this is for them to be taught. I was taught the appropriate moments to applaud during a piece of music when I was very young participating in school bands.

I think a good compromise could be reached regarding implementing claques into our society. Students are often offered discounted tickets to things like symphonies, operas, and theatrical pieces. If there were to be a walk-through of the show before half hour, or some kind of document distributed when students bought these tickets, they could act as a claque for the audience. Perhaps offered a high discount to be a claque, or offering free tickets to students in return for being claques would make a big difference. This would also teach the rising generations about when it is appropriate to applaud during specific pieces, in essence training your future audiences. An interesting concept to say the least. 
Student #2 has left a new comment on your post "When a gaming actress’ nude images leak, who shoul...":
I think that one of the most interesting topics that these events bring up is how a game studio/publisher should deal with leaked content of any sort. Sony has a pretty bad reputation for acting badly when they feel that they are in any way getting the short end of the stick. Sony also has a bad reputation for less then legitimate advertising stunts. With that in mind perhaps Sony has been taking the wrong sorts of actions in this case. We can already see that their choice to try to get these images removed has backfired and cause more people to talk about and look for the images. This article and all our comments for a start. So if Sony didn't want to mess with their game or Page's reputation then maybe their best move would have been to stay quite and let the whole thing blow over.

Probably ten years ago Valve (a game developer and publisher) had some very serious issues with their content getting leaked. A hacker had managed to hack in to one of their office computers and steal all their code for one of their biggest up coming games. The hacker released all the code online and many people were able to play the partly finished game. Instead of trying to fight the hacker directly, Valve took this as an opportunity to build their community up and make it stronger. They asked their fans not to play the hacked version and to help them find out how the hacker was stealing code. With the community help Valve was able to stop the hackers and to keep people interested in the game for the right reasons.

What I'm getting at here is that Sony should look at how they could approach this event from a different angle and maybe make something instead of destroying something. 
Student #3 has left a new comment on your post "Drama schools are a waste of money, says National ...":
I suppose I understand why people bash drama schools and call them "useless" along with a variety of other adorable names. It makes sense that people think that all drama school involves is playing around all day and it doesn't actually take any work and the reasons why people are there are completely subjective and all that crap that people told me when I applied. I personally think that the reason this is what most people think drama school is, is because they just don't get it. Yes, it's possible to be successful in the industry without formal training, but it's also possible to be successful at ANYTHING without formal training. Saying that learning to sell yourself in the industry is the only important thing to know is like saying that the only skill anyone actually needs is conversation and charm. While those are important skills, there's also a lot that we learn at drama school that doesn't necessarily involve acting or design. A large portion of our classes focus, yes on presentation, but also on opening our minds to new forms of thinking and creative processes. We learn how to tell stories and make things interesting regardless of what it is. Drama school isn't necessarily just for someone who wants to be in theater. There's a reason why large corporations look for people with drama backgrounds. It's because we learn about deadlines, and presentation, and how to function on little sleep, we learn how to take care of ourselves and the healthy way to do things. We learn empathy. Aside from the basic skills we learn (like drawing, organization, how to create paperwork, and the actors learning to dance, learning to sing, learning to speak in different accents, and learning a plethora of other things that I can't even fathom) we learn how to be people. It's sad that there are people out there who think that we are wasting our time by trying to pursue drama in school, but I just tell them that I'm sorry they don't understand and at least when I graduate my degree will allow me to do something that I can never be bored with. Sitting in an office behind a computer and waiting for my boss to come by and tell me that I've gotten that big promotion I've been waiting for is something that my school has taught me that I don't have to settle for. Theater is more than just selling yourself and it's about way more than charm. Sorry you don't understand. 
Student #4 has left a new comment on your post "PBS Revisits the Panic Broadcast":
I listened to the original broadcast for the first time this week, or at least the first time when I actually paid attention. It surprised me that there was actually a preamble to the broadcast that frames the whole thing in a fictional light, so obviously it was only the folks who tuned in a few minutes late that were fooled. I also listened this week to the RadioLab broadcast Sophie mentioned. The most interesting thing there for me was a story I'd never heard about a similar broadcast that took place in Quito, Ecuador in the 80's that actually resulted in actual panic, military mobilization and eventually the immolation of the radio station by an angry mob. By comparison, the reaction to the Mercury Theatre broadcast that resulted in a few thousand phone calls to police stations in New Jersey was pretty meek. Later, Orson Wells claimed that part of the Company's intent was to draw attention to what they saw as the blind acceptance as truth of whatever came out of their radios. I think I remember he even used the words "fed" and "tube," imagery which has stuck with us and sentiments whose poignancy have only increased. It actually draws a strange comparison to reality t.v. for me, a kind of Bizarro version of the War of the Worlds phenomenon, where we know for a fact it's all scripted and fake, but the facade that it's real somehow heightens the drama for us. I think we have become more skeptical and more foolish at the same time. I don't know exactly how that's possible, but someone oughtta write a play about it. 
Student #5 has left a new comment on your post "How the Silver Screen Turned Into a Technicolor Dr...":
The amount of effort that went into hand-shading each individual cell is bewildering, as is the evolution of film coloring in general. I further researched what the first technicolor film was, and found out that 'The Gulf Between' came out in 1917. That's not even a century ago. I also discovered that the majority of people seem to think that The Wizard of Oz was the first colored movie ever. That's a bit disheartening, that some believe that colored films just 'came about' in 1939. That is how the general public thinks though... even today. Things aren't a process, they're a product.

I know that color has benefited the film industry greatly, but the beautiful simplicity of the black and white classics should not be forgotten. You couldn't convince an audience that a brutal murder was occurring using digital affects in those days. Then, they would focus on the murderer's eyes. They would leave the gruesomeness to the audiences' imagination, which can be even worse than digital effects. There's this one scene in 'Miracle on 34th Street', where the little girl has offered Kris a piece of gum and he is trying to blow a bubble. The camera stays on her eyes as they get bigger and bigger until we hear a pop and cut to him picking gum out of his beard. It is so simple, so clear, and so well done.

The point is this: just because we advance technologically does not mean we should exploit it. We should use the new technology when it is necessary... not to prove that we can. That's what comes to mind when I think of the steamrolling entity that is Hollywood. We began with people hand coloring cells and look where we are now. Those techniques should not be tossed aside; the methods should not be forgotten. 

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