Tag Archives | YouTube

YouTube Is Prepping Its Subscription Launch

YouTube sign in San Bruno, CA
Re/Code suspects that YouTube is planning to launch a subscription service in which users will pay to avoid watching ads.

Peter Kafka writes at Re/Code:

YouTube, which spent the first 10 years of its life as a free service, is getting ready to start selling tickets.

Google’s video site appears to be finalizing launch plans for its long-in-the-making subscription service, and industry sources say they’ve been told to expect a launch near the end of October.

A blast email from YouTube to content owners who share ad revenue with the site, telling them they have to agree to new terms by Oct. 22 or their “videos will no longer be available for public display or monetization in the United States,” helps support that timeline.

But YouTube, which floated the idea of a new subscription service nearly a year ago, has never publicly committed to a timeline. Last spring, YouTube executives were telling content owners they were aiming for a mid-summer launch.

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Electric YouTube Acid Test: A Brief Guide to Tripping on the Internet

Hopes and Fears explores hallucinating on web browser tabs and talks to philosopher Ned Block about optical illusions:

You probably spent a week or two in high school learning about optics, occasionally finding relief from lectures in illusions projected onto the whiteboard. In my case, public school budgets meant that the projectors were routinely dim, out of focus, and off-color. The examples yielded an anemic crop of effects that lasted a few seconds. What little knowledge I acquired in class was muddled and superficial: cones and rods got “fatigued” and “adapted” in response stimuli, creating afterimages. Our retinas translated photons into electrical signals, which, after being “processed” in various parts of the brains, emerged miraculously as non-electrical visual experiences. Little did I know, it gets so much better.

YouTube and more generally, the internet paired with a computer screen, offer the chance to revisit these visual experiments and the scholarship behind them.

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Youtube Ditches Flash, and it Hardly Matters: Meet the New Boss, Same as the Old Boss

html5_logo_512Cory Doctorow via EFF:

Last week, Google announced that its Youtube service would default to using HTML5 video instead of Flash. Once upon a time, this would have been cause for celebration: after all, Flash is a proprietary technology owned by one company, a frequent source of critical vulnerabilities that expose hundreds of millions of Internet users to attacks on their computers and all that they protect, and Flash objects can only be reliably accessed via closed software, and not from free/open code that anyone can inspect.

A year ago, the largest video site on the net ditching Flash would have been a blow for Internet freedom. Today, it’s a bitter reminder of how the three big commercial browser vendors—Apple, Microsoft and Google—Netflix, the BBC, and the World Wide Web Consortium sold the whole Internet out.

In spring 2013, the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) abandoned its long-term role as the guardian of the open Web, and threw its support at the highest level behind EME, an attempt to standardize Flash-style locks on browsers.

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Did YouTube Copyright Rules Help to Silence Activists?

Activists love putting up their videos on YouTube (Luke Rudkowski, for example), but the video-sharing site’s copyright rules aren’t always favorable to activists, reports New Media Rockstars:

File this under “dirty tricks” if you’re the sort of person who files things! The Australian environmental activist group Get Up! is claiming that its opponents have exploited YouTube’s copyright policies in a sneaky attempt to silence them. The group, which campaigns for various social and environmental causes, suggests that an anti-coal video they produced may have been pulled from their channel by a strategically timed copyright claim just before a critical vote on the issue.

The video was allegedly produced by Get Up! to educate the public about a proposed coal transportation facility that could potentially endanger part of the Great Barrier Reef. The video highlights other environmental abuses by Adani, the energy conglomerate that would own and operate the expanded facility.

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Greenpeace ‘Save the Arctic’ Lego Movie Pulled from YouTube

500px-LEGO_logo.svgCopyright or censorship? Or both?

Jon Queally writes at Common Dreams:

UPDATE (1:02 PM EST): Statement sent by Greenpeace to its member regarding the banned video:

It looks like LEGO and its corporate pals are more offended by a video than by the idea of Shell’s plan to drill for Arctic oil. Despite the real risk of a terrible and unstoppable oil spill in icy, pristine waters, Shell is determined to  plunder every last drop of oil it can.

Just like it’s not OK for a tobacco company to market to children, an oil company has no place promoting its brand on kids’ toys. So that’s why we’re asking LEGO to show the world – and our children – that an ethical company won’t work with Shell.

LEGO said last week that it’s “determined to leave a positive impact on society and the planet”.  So are we! That’s why we’re working together to protect our oceans, rainforests and the Arctic.

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‘Innocence Of Muslims’ Director Gives First Interview

The man who kicked the hornets’ nest has granted his first interview since the furore caused by The Innocence of Muslims on YouTube. Serge F. Kovalesky and Brooke Barnes report for the New York Times:

Fuming for two months in a jail cell here, Nakoula Basseley Nakoula has had plenty of time to reconsider the wisdom of making “Innocence of Muslims,” his crude YouTube movie trailer depicting the Prophet Muhammad as a bloodthirsty, philandering thug.

Does Mr. Nakoula now regret the footage? After all, it fueled deadly protests across the Islamic world and led the unlikely filmmaker to his own arrest for violating his supervised release on a fraud conviction.

Not at all. In his first public comments since his incarceration soon after the video gained international attention in September, Mr. Nakoula told The New York Times that he would go to great lengths to convey what he called “the actual truth” about Muhammad.

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Yet Again, YouTubers Ask Obama About Drug Reform

Isn't it funny how a Democrat refuses to listen to the people who put him in power? From Alternet:
“We need to rethink and decriminalize our marijuana laws.” Can you guess which 2012 presidential candidate said the above statement? You’d be forgiven for thinking Ron Paul, or even Gary Johnson, since both have publicly advocated for reforming our country’s drug laws. You’d be forgiven for guessing anyone but Barack Obama, based on his actions during the past few years, but it was. It may be hard to believe, but President Obama is the same person who once called for reforming our marijuana laws, and deemed the drug war an “utter failure” during his 2004 campaign for the US Senate. Despite previous calls for reform, on Monday night, when faced with over 70,000 individuals urging him to address the issue of marijuana prohibition, Obama's only response was his silence. NORML and Law Enforcement Against Prohibition posted two of the most popular questions submitted to the White House’s recent Q&A on YouTube, alongside hundreds of others on the topic of marijuana law reform, but Obama offered no response or acknowledgement. This recent attempt at citizen engagement, entitled “Your Interview With the President," was launched to coincide with the State of the Union Address. The concept was simple. Anyone could submit a text or video question through the White House YouTube channel, before the public voted on them over the course of the week. The highest rated questions would be selected for Obama to address. On Tuesday, January 24th, NORML submitted a question of our own, which inquired:
“With over 850,000 Americans arrested in 2010, for marijuana charges alone, and tens of billions of tax dollars being spent locking up non-violent marijuana users, isn’t it time we regulate and tax marijuana?”
The question exploded in popularity...
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Facebook, Google, And YouTube In 1997 Format

Miss that classic feeling of using the internet back when it was fresh? Now you can feel it once again — via Once Upon by Olia Lialina & Dragan Espenschied:

Three important contemporary web sites, recreated with technology and spirit of late 1997, according to our memories.

Best viewed with Netscape Navigator 4.03 and a screen resolution of 1024×768 pixels, running under Windows 95. We recommend using a Virtual Machine or appropriate hardware, connected to a CRT monitor. If such an environment unachievable, it should be possible to experience the piece with any browser that still supports HTML Frames. The transfer speed of our server is limited to 8 kB/s («dial-up» speed).


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WikiLeaks: the Novel?

The Panama LaughAuthor Thomas S. Roche has written a new zombie novel which incorporates WikiLeaks, conspiracy forums, and viral YouTube videos, studying the new wasteland where military violence intersects corporate disinformation.

“I think WikiLeaks represents a very important impulse and the start of a strong movement toward anti-corporate sentiment and the demand for government transparency,” he explains in this new interview, “As ineffectual as that movement may end up being – because it started so late in the process of corporate control being consolidated…”

He moves from discussing fictional zombie-fighting to the brutal real-world military violence in neo-colonial nations around the world. And he ultimately wonders if our wireless technology-enhanced future will also include the potential for massive global disinformation.

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