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18 August 2003 @ 02:26 pm
In other news...  
I finished "To Say Nothing of the Dog" and...its hold on me waned over the course of the book. I know a lot of people dig this book a lot, but I got tired of trying to follow the characters' logic as they discussed Net functionality, which they did at great length as if it were inherently interesting--nine minutes slippage here, sixteen minutes there, what does it all mean, yadda yadda. The great mystery they unraveled fell flat for me. I don't have a great intellect for abstractions; I never figure out mystery plots. In any mystery novel it's the characters who interest me, and the locale; plot is secondary and I just nod along as they theorize and then explain what happened. So I liked the Victorian stuff here, and the character interactions, but the novel was hugely padded with endless, circular chit-chat about the Net. It was often like overhearing business people talk about the operations of their company or the play-offs of their fantasy sports teams: it's a closed system, of interest only to the people who are involved and who understand it. I see that CW was trying to build a mystery out of sci-fi subject matter, crossing genres in a potentially unique way, but it didn't grab me.

kjv31 has a cool new picture. I just keep tuning in to stare at the curvy babe and smile.

Thought of the day: Plagiarism as Pie, Explained. Fucking brilliant. And it's interesting, the use of the cookbook in this analogy--a cookbook is published with the expectation that people will use the contents to make pie. A TV show is "published" with the expectation that people will...what? In the traditional, consumer-based media model: watch it. That's all. At most, tape it for one's own use and rewatch it. What show creators are beginning to understand, I think, is that media consumerism is not a passive model. It's interactive. Consumers are creative and they'll use that product and not only will they discuss it, they'll create derivative works, ways of re-presenting the source material. And this is good, not bad, because it doesn't *take away* from the copyright holders--it in fact attracts more consumers to the product. So those consumers--viewers, writers, vidders, etc--*fans*--are like this vast resource of free marketing muscle. And if you're smart, you'll take advantage of that.*

[* Edited to add for non-U.S. users who might not be able to reach the site: the links are to (a) a promotional contest that Showtime ran inviting fan-fiction submissions (!), and (b) a program to affiliate your QAF fan web site with Showtime.]

All of which reminds me for, like, the third time, of A Group Is Its Own Worst Enemy. It also reminds me of something I read recently on Salon.com, about how Friendster.com's owner is frustrated by how people are "mis-using" his site and services by creating false profiles to amuse themselves with. It all interrelates. Everything and anything you put out there as source is going to get creatively redefined by its users.

Which doesn't make it plagiarism.

In other news. I am still fascinated by Mark Morford's ability to spin a sentence:
Religious conservatives are pledging an all-out drive to enshrine a ban on same-sex marriage in the U.S. Constitution, calling it the last line of defense against an inevitable court-led destruction of a fundamental social institution, and also calling it their last line of defense against their own imminent demise as well as the onslaught of love and open-thighed bliss and losing their last iota of twitchy power and just shutting the hell up for once and letting the human soul evolve for a goddamn change instead of bitching and clenching their little faux-spiritual sphincters and decrying anything that doesn't reek of oppression or intolerance or uptight sexless dogma and self-flagellation.
This is from his newsletter, The Morning Fix, "Mark's deeply skewed, highly satiric, well-lubricated thrice-weekly...email newsletter & column, which is absolutely free to subscribers but costs $10,000 if you don't like it. Strangely popular among politicians, sadomasochists, and Mormons."

Observation of the day: I am sleepy.
 
 
 
(Deleted comment)
Anna S.eliade on August 18th, 2003 03:47 pm (UTC)
I'm glad! Pump up the volume!* :>D

(* I am such an 80s geek. I suddenly want to rewatch that movie. I can actually quote it: "Is it bigger than a baby's arm?")
xanphibian on August 18th, 2003 04:21 pm (UTC)
*subscribes to TMF newsletter*

Thanks for the links, too. I'll be sure to check them out.
Veracopracat on August 18th, 2003 04:46 pm (UTC)
Is sad. The Showtime links refuse non-US connections.
Anna S.eliade on August 18th, 2003 04:48 pm (UTC)
How sad! Well, they're links to (a) a promotional contest that Showtime ran inviting fan-fiction submissions (!), and (b) a program to affiliate your QAF fan web site with Showtime. ;)
Veracopracat on August 18th, 2003 05:08 pm (UTC)
I can only say Wow. Go QAF, you fan-loving funsters.
Veracopracat on August 18th, 2003 05:09 pm (UTC)
and thank you.
Herself_nycherself_nyc on August 18th, 2003 07:32 pm (UTC)
Subscribed to that guy's column. And that's so cool about Showtime. Cool and SMART.
_reema on August 19th, 2003 12:07 am (UTC)
Mark Morford rocks my socks. He is like Chuck Palahniuk, but three times weekly in my inbox.