Chicago inventing Future Speech


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Slides from my recent presentation in Chicago for the IFP Chicago Producers Series. Only a few new things for those of you who have seen me speak before, but I always upload the slides so attendees can get links, notes, etc.

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  • Digital has been a disruptive innovation.
  • We know what digital has done to music
  • And lately this change, coupled with the decline in advertising, has decimated the print industry.
  • And now this is hitting film
  • We stand here at a moment with a lot of potential -there are many possible futures
  • We stand here at a moment with a lot of potential -there are many possible futures
  • but to understand where we’re going, we perhaps need to take a look at where we are now
  • First, this is all becoming more participatory, a conversation
  • we’ve all heard of social networking, of course, and the thousands if not millions of social networks
  • here’s an example of a filmmaker using it to their advantage - building community. note how they make it easy for people to take the content to other websites and blogs through widgets, etc. Notice how Vanishing of the Bees has a blog, a petition, twitter, facebook, etc. and a widget to take the content elsewhere.
  • the latest twitter stats
  • Importance of twitter (today) Fastest growing 1382% increase in one year, 42% over 35.
  • Zoe Keating has used it to amass an audience of over 1 million followers, and she now has a self-sustaining career. Notice here she is replying/thanking a fan who cued her in on how to watch some media. She’s not just working a one way street, she’s communicating with her audience.
  • zoe has built a fan base, that’s in constant dialogue with her. Because this should be your ultimate goal - not to think of building an audience for just one film, but for you, your career - people who will continue to follow you, be in dialogue with you and support your career.
  • Filmmakers are doing it on their own. Iron Sky example
  • Join community in multiple places, now have over 12K fans, and the movie isn’t even shot yet
  • also have people requesting the film through a Google Map mashup, and have over 7K requests before the movie is shot. On Monday, when I took this screen shot, the most recent request was from Downers Grove IL
  • and now you can too with crowdcontrols

  • Patronage – radiohead model, give it away but can donate to get more. Jill Sobule got her fans to donate to make her album - 95K
  • Here’s a blow-up of what you got for your donation
  • here’s a recent example of filmmakers doing this - cosmonaut example - one of the more clever uses of crowd-funding
  • cosmonaut example - here’s some of their merchandise, gives a broad range for support
  • Age of Stupid did this as well to much success and made a guide to it that anyone can download
  • and if you can’t build it yourself, you can use tools like these from IndieGogo
  • or from Kickstarter, where the Four Eyed Monsters folks are raising funds from their fans to build new tools for any filmmaker to crowdsource funding, screenings, audience building and more
  • But the conversation isn’t just happening through text, twitter and marketing. the conversation is also done through video
  • Here’s one of the most popular videos from YouTube. A relatively amateur dancer that lasts about 6 minutes. 127 million views, but there are multiple versions, each downloaded over 100,000 times.
    And this doesn’t count how it has been virally spread and shared.
    600K people have rated it, and 240K commented on this one posting. Thousands have posted video responses as well.
    Let’s put this in perspective.
  • Spiderman 3, most popular of 2007 – 56 million. Pirates of Carrib 2006 – 50 million, Batman – currently about 83 Million
    Avatar - may be north of 250 million tickets sold - but still
    Vs 100 million plus of the YouTube dancing video.
  • If we look at the lowest rated of the top 100 videos on YouTube, it had been seen about the same amount of times as most hollywood films in a week
    And Justin isn’t the most popular video online - this one is (trades places with Lady gaga daily) and that scares the bejesus out of hollywood
  • back to an old example - four-eyed monsters, they put out video and took it in as well - encouraging fans to upload video commentary
  • Here’s a recent mash-up of their video responses – they’ve built so many true fans that this video has been seen over 200K times, thousands of fans have added more footage and the phenomenon continues years after their screenings.
  • And they want to mix it up, mash it together and sample it and share it like crazy
  • Make their own versions, commenting on it and trade those as well
  • thruyou
  • Rip – a film on remix culture (and girltalk) encourages mash-up and remixing
  • and this to me, is it’s ultimate usage - the remix reviews of the Phantom Menace - single-handedly created a new art form AND a new form of film criticism. Lucky for you, he’s speaking tomorrow.
  • Now, this is the next logical step - letting people actually be involved in the creation of new work
  • Back to Iron Sky - they are assigning tasks, for participatory filmmaking, and have over 1500 people helping with that - participatory means creation as well
  • Lest you think this is a weird Finnish thing - look at MassAnimation’s Live Music - 58K animators fro 101 countries made a join animated film
  • As mentioned earlier, people expect their content on multiple platforms, they want to see it when, where and how they want to see it and they wanted it yesterday
  • They want it when they want it, from whatever portal they like and on whatever device they like, and they want it yesterday
    They want to share it virally with their friends
  • and get it on mobile- one of the biggest trends recently and in coming years, which I’m not devoting enough time to today.
  • and they want it free, whether with ad support or through piracy
  • Patronage – “Steal this Film” donation model
  • Now has morphed into Vodo, to launch soon
  • and that’s the key to cross-media in this environment. It let’s the audience get involved across not just multiple platforms in terms of screens, but in terms of story access points. This is the next step in the evolution of content
  • Cross media allows them to become active participants in multiple parts of the story. It allows them to delve deeper into the experience if they so choose, or access it from their preferred medium. The idea is to expand the story line into multiple media. The Matrix is the most famous recent example
  • of course, Star Wars was doing it before
  • and their fans are legion, and very involved with every aspect of the story
  • The idea is to expand the story line into multiple media. having multiple story entry points. games, ARG, graphic novels, mobile, etc
    source of image:
    a big one here is gaming, which I’m also not devoting enough time to today
  • Definitions of transmedia and examples/things to think about
  • More to think about and experts.
  • So, if this is where we are now....
  • what does the future hold?
  • to understand what might come next, we need to take a quick look at the past
  • how do we innovate for the future?
  • All of this stuff I just showed is great, but it is become repetitious - everyone doing the same thing - when the arts get stuck in repetition it is useful to look to the avant-garde
  • This was innovation. For those of you who don’t know your art history, it’s Claude Monet’s “impression:sunrise” It was the painting that gave the movement its name, which was a put down actually (looks like an impression of a painting). Now the Impressionists weren’t the first to innovate because of technology and theories, but we’re going to start with them. First, and most importantly, nothing they did was completely new. Many of the techniques you see here had been done before, but they were the first to combine them all together.
  • The first innovation was premixed paints in lead tubes. As Renoir said, without this new technology there would be no impressionism. You used to have to grind your paints yourself and keep them in dried animal stomachs, among other things, but now you could get outdoors and take your paints with you.

  • They also took the latest scientific theories of optics (divisionism especially did this), spectrography and the study of light, optical realism
    this was also the time of the rising popularity of photography, but note that they weren’t using the actual mechanism of photography, but rather the idea of the realism it allowed, the idea of it. They were also influenced by the art practice of Japan, which was becoming more accessible and by notions of how to represent reality. As well as positivism and the adherence to the scientific method. All of this combined for important new art.
  • So, by combining the latest technology and the latest theories they got great art. This has been the history of the avant-garde. We see it not just with Impressionism, but also with other avant-garde movements
  • so if you take the typewriter, a mind-blowing technology when it was introduced
    (this one is Jack Kerouac’s btw, not a surrealist, but cool nonetheless)
  • and add in one of the hottest theories of the time - psychoanalysis, maybe mix in the concurrent rise of the detective story, perhaps as seen in Fantomas series of films
  • equals surrealism - automatic writing, - Breton believed that the typewriter allowed you to let you unconscious flow more quickly and unimpeded revealing true unconscious thoughts. This let to automism in general with drawing and painting, where they too could lead to the unconscious
  • and when coupled with film technology....we got things like Un Chien Andalou -
  • Again, technology plus theory. There are numerous examples, here’s one more
  • what happens if we combine all of these new tools in our story-telling? what effect will they have?
  • what happens if we combine all of these new tools in our story-telling? what effect will they have?
  • I haven’t the slightest, the foggiest idea
  • That’s what I’m hoping that you as filmmakers discover next. That we, as a community, keep in mind

    Add a note of caution//clarification - not saying this is for everyone, or that
  • we stand now at a moment of multiple possible futures; what it’s going to be is anyone’s guess, but if we look back at the history of technology, every new technology offered similar endless possibilities which were quickly cut down to one
  • the phonograph was originally intended by Edison to be participatory, not to just sell you pre-recorded albums. But, along came the men in suits and all of the future possibilities of recording were reduced to one - selling recorded music - in very short time
  • if utopian visions for technology panned out, Ham radio would have brought democracy to the world, allowing us all to converse, but that didn’t happen either
  • so this is my plea to you in this room
  • there are endless possibilities
  • We need to become actively involved in innovating for the future. If we are to progress as a society we need to embrace this change. We, cultural producers and arbiters, curators, exhibitors, need to lead the innovation because if we don’t, the wrong people will.
  • If we want to really think about the future of media, we can’t leave it to the suits.
  • Those most threatened by the disruptions of digital aren’t aging dinosaurs
  • they’re actually vicious, blood-sucking beasts hell-bent on staying alive and thus far they will use policy and their power to wrest back this control. We’re living in a wondrous moment of change. It can seem scary, but it’s not. What’s scary is the future that might be built instead of the one that could. So instead of endless possibility, we’ll get there version of the future
  • because all we’ll get is a fancy, internet connected TV set that allows us to watch any movie ever made on demand
    yeah, it will really blow us away like that good ol’ memorex tape. and it will be TV everywhere
  • and we’ll be able to watch it all at once and comment on it and gossip about it with our friends via twitter and foursquare
  • and buy stuff
    that’ll be just great....
  • and we can watch it on our Ipad, if we can get that newspaper out of the way
  • but that’s not the innovation we need or deserve
    If all we get out of this is a fancy TV set, we’ve failed. If all we get is our indie films on Netflix, we’ve failed
    We are in danger of what Jaron lanier calls “lock-in” where the future is governed by the rules of the past and can no longer be changed
  • We need to become actively involved in innovating for the future. If we are to progress as a society we need to embrace this change. We, cultural producers and arbiters, curators, exhibitors, need to lead the innovation because if we don’t, the wrong people will.
  • So that’s my challenge to you as artists - invent the future we deserve
  • So that’s my challenge to you as artists - invent the future we deserve
  • and tell me what you create, invent, discover or think about. Here’s my details
  • Chicago inventing Future Speech

    1. 1. Inventing the Future
    2. 2. Disruptive Innovation Disruptive technology and disruptive innovation are terms used in business and technology literature to describe innovations that improve a product or service in ways that the market does not expect, typically by being lower priced or designed for a different set of consumers. Clayton Christensen via Wikipedia
    3. 3. Participatory Culture A Conversation
    4. 4. Langworthy & Henein Vanishing of the Bees
    5. 5. Twitter Stats (via Twitter) • 105,779,710 registered users • 1,500% growth over the last three years • 300,000 new sign-ups per day • 60% of new accounts were from outside the U.S. • 600 million search queries per day • A NY Times story gets tweeted every 4 seconds
    6. 6. Twitter Usage by Age Group US Growth
    7. 7. Zoe Keating @ZoeCello 1.38 million followers on Twitter
    8. 8. Building Community Friends & Fans
    9. 9.
    10. 10.
    11. 11.
    12. 12.
    13. 13. CrowdSourcing Turning Community into Funders
    14. 14. Details from Jill’s Next Record website • $10 - Unpolished Rock (but with potential) Level: A free digital download of the album, when it's released. • $25 - Polished Rock Level: An advance copy of the CD. Weeks before the masses. • $2,500 - Emerald Level: Mentioned as an executive producer of the album -- whoop- di-doo! • $5,000 - Diamond Level: I will come and do a house concert for you. Invite your friends, serve some drinks, bring me out and I sing. Actually, this level is a smart choice economically. I've played many house concerts where the host has charged his guests and made his money back. I'd go for this if I were you. • $10,000 - Weapons-Grade Plutonium Level: You get to come and sing on my CD. Don't worry if you can't sing - we can fix that on our end. Also, you can always play the cowbell.
    15. 15.
    16. 16.
    17. 17. TheAgeofStupid.Net
    18. 18.
    19. 19.
    20. 20. Participatory II. A Viral Video Conversation
    21. 21. Remix Culture Mash-Ups and Sampling – Participatory Cinema
    22. 22. Kuitman: Thru-You
    23. 23. Gaylor: RIP! A Remix Manifesto
    24. 24. Red Letter Media, Mr. Plinkett: The Phantom Menace Review (s)
    25. 25. CrowdSourcing 2: Turning Community into Producers
    26. 26.
    27. 27.
    28. 28. Multi-Platform Agnostic, Viral & Mobile
    29. 29. Sally Potter’s Rage First Movie Premiering Day/Date at a Festival and on Mobile
    30. 30. Free (Plus Fee)
    31. 31. Cross-Platform Cross-Media, Transmedia
    32. 32. Transmedia What it is: Types/examples: Develop the story across multiple entry points Events Multi-platform Games/ARG Audience can become immersed in experience Interactive components Deep audience engagement Graphic Novels Encourages participatory audiences Online & viral content Each element a distinctive experience Think Outside the norms - experiences Story flows & builds rev streams
    33. 33. Transmedia Quick thoughts: Some Experts: Keep a mind towards audience dev. components Christy Dena from the beginning Think beyond marketing Stephen Dinehart (coined) It’s not all about the film - extend the experience Jeff Gomez Think about impact & social change Henry Jenkins Not just games.... events, gallery shows, etc. Mike Monello Some projects may not need to be a film John Threat ...or can become one if successful Lance Weiler Transmedia can be simple Many more...
    34. 34. Strategies for Innovation
    35. 35. Futile Repetition is worse that disastrous innovation. The avant-garde is most needed during periods of redundancy. Apollinaire (paraphrased)
    36. 36. Claude Monet: Impression, Sunrise
    37. 37. "Without tubes of paint, there would have been no impressionism.” Renoir Cutting Edge Technology +
    38. 38. + Cutting Edge Theory
    39. 39. Cutting Edge Technology + Theory
    40. 40. Cutting Edge Technology +
    41. 41. + Cutting Edge Theory
    42. 42. = Surrealism Andre Masson
    43. 43. = Surrealism Un Chien Andalou, Bunuel and Dali
    44. 44. Cutting Edge Technology + Theory
    45. 45. Next in tech? Augmented Reality Electronic translation Touch technology Virtual worlds Geo-location Open source Controller-less games Tagging metadata to clip level Social Robotics Collaborative “cloud” editing Online/Offline social networks Application Program Interface (API) Film/Video/Animation Micro-projectors Visual Search Quick-Response (QR) Codes 3D (& 3D Printers) Brain-computer Interface (BCI) Laptop Quantum Computers What else?
    46. 46. Next in theory? Climate Change Evolutionary Psychology Bio-Engineering Molecular Biology Genetics - Decoding of genome Nanotechnology Quantum Physics “Beyond Standard Model” Physics Wave theory Terrorism/Security Network Effects Privacy Creation of artificial life forms Apocalyptic Theories Singularity Inequality/Great Recession Artificial Intelligence What else?
    47. 47. No Fucking Clue
    48. 48. The best way to predict the future is to invent it Alan Kay
    49. 49. Phonograph could be used to record the "Family Record"--a registry of sayings, reminiscences, etc., by members of a family in their own voices, and of the last words of dying persons. Edison, North American Review, 1887.
    50. 50. My Plea
    51. 51. Potential Roadblocks: Policy - need Net Neutrality Lack of Vision & Creativity Lack of Business Models Established Players
    52. 52. Innovation
    53. 53. The definition of catastrophe is to have missed the opportunity. Walter Benjamin
    54. 54. Invent the Future We Deserve
    55. 55. Blog: Email: Twitter: @bnewman01