Four papers and hours of Pandora and Spotify later, finals week is over. For all of the time I spent listening to music for free through Internet streaming services, the artists who helped me through a tough week are receiving mere cents from me and the digital music streaming services I’ve used.
The current copyright regulations governing the music industry haven’t been updated since 2001. Since then, the iPod has debuted, parents use “iPad time” to incentivize their toddlers to use the toilet, flip phones are a rarity, and Spotify and Pandora exist. The drastic changes in technology have resulted in patterns of consumption that allow consumers to pick and choose songs instead of buying entire albums, and listen to stream music through numerous devices for free. Despite the shifts in revenue streams, the policies governing the compensation of songwriters, composers, and other creatives have not. These creative forces driving the music industry are facing unfair compensation from these new services, a problem that has the potential to bring down the entire industry. Was Taylor Swift on to something?
It was really interesting to hear Ta-Nehisi Coates speak, especially after we had read his article on reparations for class. I am always curious to see how a writer’s voice is different or similar between his speaking and writing.
Unfortunately, we have all missed National Hug Day this year, but you can mark January 21 on your calendar now so you won’t ever miss it again. Hugs are great. At the end of a tough day, all I want is a hug. It’s a nice feeling to be close to someone and feel protected even if the action makes you more vulnerable to being tickled or pinched at the sides.
Earlier this semester, the short days and the cold weather was starting to wear on my attitude. Luckily, Provost Mick Smyer chose to feature Duck Soup (1933) at the Campus Theater and the goofiness of the comedy genuinely helped life my spirits. Smyer’s introduction to the movie praised the efforts of the Campus Theater staff for working so hard to bring in old movies from the country’s many film collections. He also made a point of noting the power of comedy and how it is a useful tool for seeing the absurdity of our world. Continue reading The Revelations of Comedy: Duck Soup at the Campus Theater→
I have a small list of celebrities that I would one day like to be friends with. Maybe that’s not okay to admit, but it is the truth. On that list are the likes of Jennifer Lawrence, Adele, Sam Heughan, and quite a few others, including the wonderful Mindy Kaling.
Beginning with The Office and following her to The Mindy Project, I have admired Kaling’s sense of humor and work ethic for years. I love that she tells it likes it is and writes characters that are lovable and flawed. The opportunity to have dinner with a role model like Mindy Kaling would be both hilariously fun as well as inspirational.
The first thing I think of when I think of inventions I would like to see are science fiction inspired things like teleportation or time machines. So thinking of something a little more realistic was a challenge, but after getting off the phone with my dad it occurred to me that I would like Mr. Musk to invent a running shoe technology that would truly prevent knee pain in older runners.
As Christians around the world gather to celebrate Easter weekend, travel agencies across the globe are noting the large numbers of men headed to Hungary for the holy weekend. With “Ducking Monday” fast approaching, local stores are selling out of buckets and pails, while Hungarian natives are brushing off their traditional suspenders and skirts in preparation for their annual wet t-shirt contest.
When introduced to America in the late 1940s, the television was predicted to be a brief fad that wouldn’t last more than a few years. Now in 2015, the world of television has become a staple of pop culture and modern day media distribution. Through decades of technological development and changes in consumer preferences, the television industry has managed to adjust and remain relevant. While premium channels like HBO (Home Box Office) and Showtime once rattled the nerves of top broadcast networks, the advent of digital streaming services like Netflix have become the latest innovation to pressure change in the industry.
The current changes to the television industry bring to light some of the shortcomings of the current model. Streaming services do not require the use of cable operators to distribute their content allowing consumers fewer barriers to access. In contrast, HBO has the power to choose which distributors it interacts with and therefore which audiences are left with or without access. Airwave usage is often considered a public commons, as evidenced by radio. Although distributed through similar methods as radio, television has historically been treated differently. HBO’s terms of distribution regulate the commons, and in doing so defies the rationality set by Kantian logic. The network’s reputation as a cutting edge innovator and industry leader makes it all the more surprising that HBO would impede on the public’s the right to content. The potential to understand the rationality behind HBO’s practices of distribution lies in thinking of the commons in conjunction with Kantian theories of ethics. Continue reading For the Common Good: An Analysis of HBO’s Manipulation of the Commons→
I attended a panel designed to discuss sustainability from the perspective of language, justice, and history. The panel was titles “Imagine” and aimed to present the different forms available to the topic of sustainability. I thought this panel was particular interesting in the representation of different academic departments including English, Philosophy, and History.
Last week, I took a close look at HBO. Although I did ask the question of responsibility over content, I find HBO’s strategies in the quickly changing world of television to be much more interesting subjects of discussion. With the most recent changes to the world of television, HBO has partnered with Apple to launch its own streaming service called HBO NOW. The goal is to allow those without cable services to access HBO’s content, but the affects on Time Warner’s other networks remains to be seen, as it is unknown how many consumers will drop their cable subscriptions to make a complete shift to streaming. But is HBO NOW only about competing with streaming services or is it another way to incentivize consumers to buy content over piracy?