- On Thanksgiving I wrote quite a long piece about the infamous comic strip “Huxley was right; Orwell was wrong”. It very poorly tied the idea that Huxley was right to Black Friday now spilling over into Thanksgiving now, the day of the year we’re supposed to be thankful for what we have. The only day of the year in this country where we aren’t supposed to be consumers. It also compared and contrasted 21st Century living to what Brave New World and 1984 predicted would happen to our societies. I wrote it, edited it, and published it. For some reason the published version wiped about 3/4 of the thing clean. Probably a good thing as it was terribly written.
- The Atlantic: “With 35MM Film Dead, Will Classic Movies Ever Look The Same Again?“. It’s a depressing question with probably a more depressing answer.
“In June, director Martin Scorsese tried to show his 1993 film The Age of Innocence at the Museum of the Moving Image in Queens. Thelma Schoonmaker, Scorsese’s editor for the past 40 years and a three-time Oscar winner, called Grover Crisp, the senior VP of asset management at Sony, for a 35mm print. But Sony not only didn’t have a print, it couldn’t even make one.
“He told me that they can’t print it anymore because Technicolor in Los Angeles no longer prints film,” Schoonmaker recalled. “Which means a film we made 20 years ago can no longer be printed, unless we move it to another lab—one of the few labs still making prints.”
- A swath of Nordic countries (all of them?) are telling Facebook to stop unsolicited advertising of users in their countries or face legal action. Good for them. Not only did they cite the current EU on “privacy and electronic communication” in their threat, they also are looking into amending the law to uniquely tackle the topic. “It is prohibited to send electronic advertisements to consumers who haven’t given their consent, either by email or SMS… We think that some of the advertising that Facebook calls ‘sponsored stories’ is beginning to look like unsolicited electronic messages.”
- The Independent: “The Future of War Is Looking Bleak“. What a spectacular title for a news article! Now we’re talking! Havard Hegre, a professor at the University of Oslo, developed a model for predicting future events and trends on a global scale this past year, his work has just been published. In it Hegre discovered that the amount of “wars” (defined as a conflict between countries in which at least 25 people die) has dropped dramatically in recent history, and the extended model shows a continuation of decline in the next 40 years. “War has become less acceptable,” Hegre said, “just like duelling, torture and the death penalty.”