OUR BLOG FEED: RDF | RSS .92 | RSS 2.0 | ATOM 0.3

Go To Current Downhill Battle Posts

Community Media Platform

I talked with Ahmi Wolf yesterday, who we first met when he emailed us a few months back about our iTunes page. Anyway, he’s up to this new thing called Community Media Platforms, which is a general framework for nifty tools that let people share media. The first such tool is bass-station, a WiFi enabled computer-in-a-boombox (check out the pictures) that anybody within range can upload or download music to, and even play music off of. The second is the CoDeck which is a similar device, oriented more towards video, wrapped in the shell of a classy old Betamax VCR.

Anyway, “Sharing Media” is one of those academic turns of phrase that conceals the beauty of the thing it describes. So if “tools to share media” doesn’t evoke much for you, it’s not your fault. But take a second to think about how awesome it is that a growing percentage of the stuff we watch and listen to is delivered and even created by our peers. For the past 70 years mass media has been a pipe pointed at us: filthy rich 50 year-olds hiring moderately rich 27 year-olds to guess what 15 year-olds want to watch and listen to. Now it’s changing, and that can only be a good thing.

Most people aren’t going to stop watching TV. But as open platforms grow, the “TV” diet will increasingly include things like Gi Joe PSAs (inexplicably hilarious), the Meatrix (political), Fan Films (nerdy) or first-run movies camcorded in noisy theatres where everybody’s laughing and yelling at the screen (does that count as a remix?), or skateboarding dogs (simply awesome).

People look to mass media to satiate their imagination and give them viacarious experiences of life’s richness. Documentation of other people doing crazy shit should be plenty enough to fullfill that. And why not be fulfilled by others’ earnestness instead of some company trying to manipulate you into buying stuff?

Admittedly, the value of all this is intangible. Nobody’s going to get smarter, more political, or (certainly not) more highbrow overnight. But the world will start to have more texture, and fewer mind-numbing commercials. Pop culture will turn into an actually popular culture.

For some open TV platforms in natal stages check out: Xbox Media Center , MythTV, and the Hauppage MediaMVP. And if you’re a coder or designer interested in helping to make the p2p phenomenon jump to everybody’s television, get in touch.

Stay tuned for another video-related announcement tomorrow.

Permanent Link

Comments are closed.