Tag Archives | YouTube

Ryan Higa – Agent of Secret Stuff (ASS)

Ryan Higa is the star of a massively popular comedic espionage "TV" series, Agents of Secret Stuff, but you won't find it on any actual television network. 20-year-old Higa is making ASS for his YouTube Channel and in just a few days the latest 35-minute episode has amassed nearly 4 million views. I doubt he's making money from it yet, but chances are that Higa is going to parlay his giant audience into some megabucks before long. One question, though ... is he any good? Check him out:
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Mainstream Film Rentals Coming Soon To Google/YouTube

hollywoodGoogle, YouTube, Hulu, Netflix … it’s only a matter of time till Blockbuster files for bankruptcy. In case we didn’t already have enough access to instant movie viewing, Google is looking for a new deal with Hollywood studios. From Wired:

Google is reportedly in talks with the major movie studios to launch full-length video rentals on YouTube by year’s end.

YouTube has already experimented with film rentals, offering selections from the Sundance Festival earlier this year when it would not rule out the addition of Hollywood movies. And the site was reportedly in talks with the same studios around this time last year, so this does not come as much of a surprise, the Financial Times’ “scoop” notwithstanding.

However, YouTube’s movie rental program currently focuses on independent filmmakers and music artists. The addition of mainstream, pay-per-view feature films to YouTube would represent a significant development, regardless of how long these reported talks have been ongoing (at least a year).

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Annalee Newitz: How ‘Max Headroom’ Predicted My Job, 20 Years Before It Existed

Max HeadroomVery interesting essay from Annalee Newitz on io9.com. If you grew up watching American television in the '80s this was one of the weirdest and most interesting shows on network TV, even for kids like myself who didn't fully grasp the implications of what I was seeing on the screen. (The show obviously baffled many adults as well, since it only lasted fourteen episodes, thankfully the entire series has finally been released on DVD.) Making sense of it all and putting the show in perspective twenty years later is Annalee Newitz on io9.com:
For those who don't know the premise of the 1987—88 series, where every episode begins with the tagline "twenty minutes into the future," here's a quick recap. Investigative reporter Edison Carter works for Network 23 in an undefined cyberpunk future, where all media is ad-supported and ratings rule all. Reporters carry "rifle cameras," gun-shaped video cameras, which are wirelessly linked back to a "controller" in the newsroom. Edison's controller is Theora, who accesses information online — everything from apartment layouts to secret security footage — to help him with investigations. They're aided in their investigations by a sarcastic AI named Max Headroom, built by geek character Bryce and based on Edison's memories. Sometimes producer Murray (Jeffrey Tambor) helps out, as does Reg, a pirate TV broadcaster known as a "blank" because he's erased his identity from corporate databases. In the world of Max Headroom, it's illegal for televisions to have an off switch. Terrorists are reality TV stars. And super-fast subliminal advertisements called blipverts have started to blow people up by overstimulating the nervous systems of people who are sedentary and eat too much fat...
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Russian Court Bans YouTube Website

Russia joins the company of Turkey, China, Pakistan and Iran, in banning YouTube. After an “extremist” nationalist video appeared on the website, a Russian court ordered YouTube to be blocked within the Khabarovsk region. The Guardian reports:

Russia’s blogosphere reacted with anger today after a regional court banned YouTube because it carried a single video containing “extremist” content.

The court in Komsomolsk-on-Amur in Khabarovsk region in the Russian far east ordered Rosnet, a local internet provider, to block YouTube as well as three online libraries and a website that archives deleted web pages.

The regional ban was made because YouTube hosted Russia For Russians, an ultra-nationalist video which was added to the justice ministry’s federal list of banned extremist materials after a separate court decision in Samara region in November.

The other four sites – Web.archives.org, Lib.rus.ec, Thelib.ru and Zhurnal.ru – all carried copies of Hitler’s Mein Kampf.

Anton Nosik, Russia’s leading internet guru, condemned the decision.

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DIY Medicine From YouTube Videos

youtube19lf5_jpg_772281gm-aOne of the positive things about the recession era is that it’s inspiring people to get creative — for instance, by performing their own minor surgeries, using how-to videos from YouTube. The Globe and Mail reports:

Before, doctors worried about patients who self-diagnosed after doing Internet research on questionable medical websites. But the social Web has given birth to a new beast: users who document their DIY medical procedures on camera and share the videos on YouTube.

Doug Southern would have preferred to see a doctor, but bad timing meant he was without health insurance. He was laid off from his job a short while before a three-year-old baseball-sized cyst on his back became infected.

When his brother-in-law, a family practitioner, and his sister came to visit him in Tuscaloosa, Ala., he decided to put down a towel and pillow on his kitchen floor and turn it into a makeshift operating room so his cyst could be taken out “Alabama style.”

The graphic, seven-minute YouTube video is punctuated with squeals of delight and revulsion from Mr.

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Hitler ‘Downfall’ Parodies Removed from YouTube

Downfall ParodyNein! Nein! Nein! Gottverdammt YouTube! Gottverdammt Constantin Film! Es ist wahr! Mein Leben ist vorbei. What the hell YouTube, you did this on Hitler's birthday?!? WTF. Reports Mashable:
The movie studio responsible for the award-winning, German-Austrian film Downfall (German: Der Untergang) has asked YouTube to take down several videos from the massively popular subtitled “Hitler finds out…” meme, and the site has complied.Search YouTube and you’ll still find hundreds of Downfall parodies, but click through to some of the bigger ones and you’ll now get the message, “This video contains content from Constantin Film, who has blocked it on copyright grounds.”
Downfall No More... Yep, all the ones we have on disinfo.com are gone...
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YouTube: A History

From the Telegraph:
YouTube, the online video site, marks its fifth year this week. Here are some of the key staging posts in its history. February 2005: YouTube founders, Chad Hurley, Steve Chen and Jawed Karim begin work on a video sharing site — they all met at PayPal.
April 2005: First video uploaded to YouTube — a video of Jawed at San Diego Zoo
November 2005: YouTube secures first round of funding with Sequoia Capital for $3.5m
December 2005: Official Launch (8m videos watched a day) February 2006: 15m videos watched a day; 20,000 uploaded a day May 2006: Mobile video uploads released July 2006: 65,000 new videos uploaded every day, site passes 100m video views per day
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Google Unleashes Make-Your-Own Video Tool

Jason Kincaid reveals the details, at TechCrunch:

Remember Google’s Hell-froze-over, critically acclaimed Super Bowl ad Parisian Love? The one that managed to use a series of basic search queries to tell a touching love story? Now you’ve got a chance to tell a story of your own.

Some time in the last few days Google launched a new feature called the “Search Stories Video Creator“. And damn if it isn’t fun. The new feature prompts you to input up to seven search queries spread across Google’s search features (including Images, Maps, and standard web search), choose a song, and it generates a video in the same style as Google’s other Search Stories.

The whole process only takes a few minutes (the tool automatically uploads your video to YouTube when you’re ready). And while there are plenty of parodies already out there, we can expect a whole lot more of them to pop up in the next few days…

Here’s Kincaid’s own video:

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Man Arrested for Death Threat Against Eric Cantor Claimed to Be Messiah (Video)

Eric CantorNow this is one crazy dude. Kevin Spak writes on Newser:
A 33-year-old Philadelphia man has been arrested and charged with making YouTube death threats against Eric Cantor. The video has since been pulled down, but in it Norman Leboon promised that Cantor would “receive my bullets in your office, remember they will be placed in your heads. You and your children are Lucifer’s abominations,” according to Talking Points Memo. When Google provided the FBI with Leboon’s IP address, they discovered that local police already had a warrant for his arrest for another threatening video. When federal agents visited him Sunday, Leboon said he was the “son of the god of Enoch,” and that he had made over 2,000 threatening videos. He allegedly admitted to making the Cantor video three days earlier, and called Cantor “pure evil.” Another video warns that, as punishment for removing his videos, "all the YouTube employees both men and women will lose their first-born sons." (see below)
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