Categories
Art & Craft Projects & Ideas

VODO

The changes that the new digital paradigm has brought to the distribution of cultural works, specially of those like still images, audio and video that can be easily copied and shared online without losing any of the quality or properties of the original work, don’t mean the disappearance of the role of intermediaries, if they are understood as curators, and not as business middlemen.

This trend has enabled the blooming of the netlabel scene in music, who has brought great artistic and commercial successes. VODO functions in exactly the same way as a netlabel, but its purpose its limited to the distribution of film works.

Each month, VODO distributes one film feature through P2P networks, also promoting it through partnerships with its distribution network, mainly bittorrent trackers and sites. The films distributed through VODO range from documentary to drama, from animation to live action.

Viewers of the films distributed by VODO can donate money back to the creators through its system, or become subscribers. This (a “regular supporter”) allows loyal VODO users to participate in the decision-making process, voting for films to be distributed through VODO, suggesting film-makers, and interacting with the creators of the films. VODO opens the curatorial process to everyone who wants to become involved.

Categories
Unrest

Sourcemap

Cartography has been always one of the prime tools for control and domination, because of his apparent truthfulness, like media. Those who make a map also decide where the borders lay, what is the name of everything, how to represent other countries, or their own (bigger, greenier), etc.

For this very same reason, cartography has also been used as an activist tool, way before Google Maps was invented, but the recent trend in mapping and data visualization has meant an increment in the use of cartography as a mean to represent reality from a radical stance.

Surveillance camera maps and other countless mashups of economic and geographic data are now joined by Sourcemap. The project taps into the local consumption angle and sustainability that we have covered here before, and wants to show in a map the supply chain for a given product, calculating the carbon footprint of producing and delivering that product.

Sourcemap is a platform that enables users to contribute to and share ideas about sustainability. Whether you are inviting people to an event, buying ingredients for a recipe, or designing a product, your choices have a significant impact. Some decisions have impacts that stretch across the world, whereas others are entirely regional. Understanding the reach of our actions and facilitating positive change is fundamental to improving economic, social, and environmental conditions.

Sourcemap, sponsored by the MIT Medialab is looking for volunteers.

Categories
News & Media Projects & Ideas

Media Squat

Media Squat is a radio show in WFMU hosted by Doublas Rushkoff, author of the book Life Incorporated.

This participatory radio show – now called The Media Squat – looks at both sides of Life Incorporated: how life has been literally “incorporated” by business and economics, and how can we incorporate LIFE back into our world: local commerce, community, social currency, and other emerging forms of participatory culture. This is freeform, bottom-up, open source radio looking towards similarly open source, bottom-up solutions to some of the problems engendered by our relentlessly top-down society.

Each show will initiate a series of discussions, which will themselves comprise part of an expanding wiki of resources, support material, and community-generated content. A piece on “local currency” will branch out to embrace the local currency efforts, discussions, and tools out there. How does a person create a currency for his or her town? And where are the other people interested in doing this? Who has the best solar solutions, the most interesting way of organizing labor, the best free local Wi-Max network? Let’s talk to the CEO’s of GE and BP about their green efforts, and whether they believe their own hype. How about urban planning? Bike lanes? Ads on school buses and Coke machines in the cafeteria? What’s in those textbooks, anyway?

This is a 21st Century, cyberpunk reclamation of all technologies and social contracts as essentially open source, up for discussion, and open to modification. It’s an application of the hacker ethic and net collectivism to everything, done in the spirit of fun and adventure.