Monday, June 4, 2012

Important Impotent Media

Today I started the day in a rather bad mood. You see... I started it by watching one of those news channels that get commercials... Mostly about the news channel itself, telling me how important it is, and how awesome their work is for my personal improvement/empowerment in life.
Have you ever seen this?
Suddenly the "news" is interrupted by cool effects, explosions, drama, oil-tankers sinking, hugging children, and the fierce news-anchor standing in the middle of it, telling us all how impressed we should be by the sacrifice he or she does on our behalf by telling us a somewhat random story in the general vicinity of the action.
Their slogans might sound something like this: "CNN, telling you what you should know so you don´t have to!" or "FOX; in a shitload of action so YOU might live to see another day!"

It took about five minutes before I was fuming at the TV and my girlfriend was fuming at me for being a dick at the breakfast table later on.
WHY you ask? Why was I fuming? Because of the ridiculousness of it all, basically.
To me it seems like the news channels are giving themselves a blowjob every time they see their own reflection, so they make x-amount of commercials in addition to the actual news casting.
This makes the news, at best, second rate in my opinion. 
You see. The general media, or the world media, have lost their value. What in some point in the past was news, has now become shredded pieces of shit-stories, borderline propaganda and drama seeking. Instead of watching the news, I suddenly find myself watching old men giving themselves the dirty look in high resolution profile pictures where there in a perfect world instead would be deliverance of information.

Staring stoically into the horizon

Its not that I don´t get the news... Its more like I am increasingly aware that the "news" is highly suspect as it is made by people who are more engulfed by their own story than the actual news.

I am no media-scholar, so I will save myself the embarrassment of trying to sound like I have the competence of one. Yet, I can´t pretend to NOT know the extreme impact of the world media. Sufficed to say, it is great... therefore it´s even more important for them to act less like cancer, and more like the democratic institution they are.
If I wanted news the "interesting" way, I would watch this guy:

The sad thing is that I get more information about the actual state of the contemporary world by watching him, than watching some of the mayor news-stations.

holy shit I have to learn how to not give a crap
Because right now I believe that a ten year old is more suited to do the job properly than some of the current anchors...

"And in Iran today..."

Agreed. The anchors aren´t the ones that make the stories, or makes the decisions concerning the way in witch we get the news. Its easy to get angry at them though, as they represent the face of the institution. It just pisses me off that the news has become more and more tabloid even in the current information-gathering environment of the world. This leads me to think about a world without any news at all and what it would look like. I mean... As humans in the western hemisphere (and most probably the rest of the world as well)  we are addicted to information, so there would obviously be some kind of "news" in some form or another. But would it be possible to do it without the "grandness" of it? Would it be possible to transcend information without the "big-daddy"-syndrome taking over? The intention of the media, in my opinion, is to make society more open, more free. Not borderline theater like it is today...

I´m going to go apologize to my girlfriend now, unless I want to make the headliners on tomorrows cockshow.


Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Long Trip

 Have you ever heard of the voyager program? The one with the two probes launched into space in the 1970s?
Originally the probes were sent of to explore the surface on some of the other planets in our solar system but what they also did when they sent them of was to stop for a couple of seconds and think; "hmm. These aren´t coming back... so that means that someone else might find them some day... We should probably send a little greeting."

Radiolab, One of my favorite radio shows and podcasts, had a show in 2007 about that greeting. They actually interviewed the producer and maker of the recording that was sent with the two voyager probes. It contained all sorts of sounds from earth, including "hello" in many different languages, music from Mozart, Beethoven, Bach etc, The sound of a whale. A mothers first words to her newborn child... You get the gist.
And while listening to the thoughts and feelings that went with the voyagers I get more and more exited.
Just think about it...
Put yourself out there in the universe, as an alien, discovering one of these recordings of us! Imagine being one of the team finding out that it is a recording and turning it on... Imagine hearing Bach´s cello suite prelude being played to you and through it, another civilization reaching out to you across the stars!
Imagine standing perplexed and listening to alien music never before heard by a non-human.
Kind of scary and moving at the same time.

As I see it, the voyagers are probably doomed to either roam space for ever, or being pulverized by some random asteroid before ever reaching another civilization. That is what probably will happen anyway. Yet, the chance is there... That they, some day, after our civilization is dead and gone and swallowed up by our sun, that they will reach someone. Lucky bastards.

Hands up to Radiolab for giving such  a fantastic podcast each week! Recommendations all around...
If you go to the site, there will probably be some kind of pledge which you don´t have to pay. The podcast is free.

Have fun!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

42 and beyond Music

I realize that it has been a while since I last wrote anything on the blog. But never mind. Im sure most of you don't follow any particular thread here on the web anyway, so what do you care?

So what to write about after hitting this humongous dry spot? Music ofc.

Thats the one thing that all men and women around the world can agree upon: that music, in one form or another, is a part of their lives, either to a greater or a lesser extent.

I am one of those people who is regularly hit by really vivid day-dreams. The other day, while riding the bus, I started to think about what it would be like traveling back in time to the 18th century and giving someone there an example of todays western music.
The ultimate social experience I imagine.
My first thought would be that the people of that time would react with disgust, since music is heavily related to culture, language, social stigma, etc. To them, most of our music would probably sound like gibberish, trash or just random sound escaping from some sort of imagined animals, because they would have no knowledge of electric guitars, drums (like the ones we have now) key-boards, programs, etc....
So what would they have thought? Or more interestingly; what would they have heard?
Think about it. The people of the 18th century had simple string instruments, drums (bongo, tambourines, etc.), piano, vocals, and maybe a flute? They could never imagine using rhythm like we do today... or even using vocals as a main factor.
I imagine me standing in front of a small group of puffed-up victorian-time english people, holding up my iPhone and playing DFRNT. I imagine they standing wide-eyed and gasping as my magic glass plate expels sound. And then they all shriek and panic because the sound doesn't make sense to them.
From there the day-dream goes downward, either ending in me finding some way to travel back to our time, or just ending my days in some victorian jail somewhere, charged with witchcraft or something.

Anywhoo. Hope everyone out there on the plane of Zero.1 are all right! Im sorry if you find spelling errors in the text. Im not using my own computer and lack both spell-check and a keyboard I like.