Saturday, 12 February 2011

Updates on blog topics from 2010: 3D Cinema, Privacy and iPad adverts

Some recent news stories have added some new perspective to blog posts I wrote in the last year.

In May 2010 I wrote a post complaining about the terrible quality of the 3D visual effects in movies such as ‘Clash of the Titans’ where the decision to make it 3D film was taken at a late stage in the production process. Judging by this FT article on cinema revenues, it seems I was not the only one to be aware of poor 3D quality. My fears over 3D quality made me reticent to see several of the movies in the second half of the year. In my post, I wrote about the risk that studio execs would “kill 3D cinema” before it has been given time to find its place in the media landscape. This is a risk they still need to comprehend: the 3D fad in the 1950s faded into obscurity; it would be a shame to see history repeat itself.

In August I wrote a post discussing the decline of privacy in a socially networked world. Although this controversial issue is far from settled, the News of the World phone-hacking scandal has drawn a clear line in the sand. Celebrities are the leaders and trend-setters of society when it comes to balancing self-promotion with retaining some level of privacy. Through regular interviews, TV programs and paparazzi shoots we get to know the intimate details of many celebrities’ lives and for the most part they put up with it. But the press, in the form of NoTW reporters, have overstepped the boundary and are facing serious consequences, in the form of law suits, job losses, and jail terms. The upshot of this: it is reassuring to know that at some level, our privacy is still sacrosanct.

Finally in June I wrote a post praising the simplicity and sophistication of iPad adverts, which use screen shots of cultural content (e.g. Facebook, The Guardian) to convey the personality of their target consumers (e.g. young tech-savvy trend-setters). In 2011, a new set of iPad adverts can be found around London, with the same concept but different screen-shots. Most notable among this new crop of images is a shot from the website TED. Much like this blog, TED is dedicated to the propagation of interesting ideas. It is a non-profit organisation which videos lectures and performances by some of the world’s top thinkers and talents in a variety of fields. TED talks from the likes of Steve Jobs, Al Gore and Malcolm Gladwell (to name but a few) are free to view online. Historically these kinds of talks would only have been by conference attendees or MBA classes; now they are available to the world. With this advert, Apple have done it again, and given TED Talks a useful leg-up in the process.

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