Joss Whedon’s New Media Adventures

If you haven’t seen this, and apparently I’m a bit behind in jumping on this bandwagon; you must watch, and if you like, buy.

*side note – I can’t figure out for the life of me why the creative folks out there don’t go into productions that take at least *some* level of professional effort, like Dr. Horrible, and set up some minimal merchandising before release.

In this case, it would have been simple to upload a few “Dr. Horrible” images for t-shirts and coffee mugs from someplace like CafePress and with the show’s popularity taking off, it could have been a bonanza.

Anyway, point is, it’s just too easy, and too low-cost to *not* make elements like these part of the deliverables for new media shows.


Couple weeks ago, got an interesting call to put together something for MyDamnChannel, and below is the result.

I have to say, I’m pretty happy with the result, if not perfect. Terrell, J and Paul were all a pleasure to work with, and they made it easy, and 13,000+ views in 2 days online? That’s not bad either!

It’s also a cool format idea to have celebs sit down and have a conversation with each other and see what they say and we had fun making it:)

UPDATE: 9-15-08
WOW! In a little over a month, this first of two episodes has racked up over 200,000 views. That’s pretty rockin’!

Seek First to Understand

A game creator recently took the brave step of directly asking people who pirate his games, why they do so, and to open a dialogue with them about it. (as an exercise, anywhere you see the word “game” replace it with movie or television show and chew on that a while).

A few days ago I posted a simple question on my blog. “Why do people pirate my games?”. It was an honest attempt to get real answers to an important question… This is what I found:


Firstly it’s worth pointing out that there were LOTs of responses (and they are still coming in now), hundreds of comments on the sites listed, a ton of comments on the blog (despite it crumbling under the strain) and hundreds of emails made it through to me. I read every one of them…. Here is what they said:

The semi-political ones

I got a few people churning out long arguments about whether or not intellectual property is valid, and claiming that it was censorship, or fascism and other variations on this theme…


A lot of anger was directed at the retail $60 games, and console games. My games were $19-23, but for a lot of people, it was claimed this was far too high. People talked a lot about impulse buying games if they were much cheaper.

Game Quality

This was a big complaint too. And this also surprised me. Not a single person said they had felt ripped off by a game due to substandard visuals or lack of content. The consensus was that games got boring too quickly, were too derivative, and had gameplay issues. Almost everyone had a tale of a game that was bought based on hype which turned out to be disappointing.


People don’t like DRM, we knew that, but the extent to which DRM is turning away people who have no other complaints is possibly misunderstood. If you wanted to change ONE thing to get more pirates to buy games, scrapping DRM is it. These gamers are the low hanging fruit of this whole debate.

There’s more on his site, go read it.

Today, he posted his conclusions, and they are an excellent window into the things the market that we create and sell film, television and music for.

It’s worth reading the summary of responses, and what he’s going to do about it.

There’s a good lesson to be learned here.

I Have Seen the Future of Storytelling

This post on TechCrunch shows video from a new 3d engine that does all it’s rendering in “the cloud” and provides for photoreal environments ostensibly to be used for gaming.

What I see in this demo video? I see shooting a scene on a deserted stretch of Pacific Coast Highway (as shown in the video) without the cost of police, shutting down the highway, all my lighting crew and camera crew and bringing in talent to do voices that are blithely happy they don’t have to sit through make up, sit through lighting changes, etc in order to act their roles.

With tools like this it won’t matter how much money you do or don’t have, it will matter how well you create characters, and write, and set up your shots to convey the emotions you want in your story.

This is my prognostication – OTOY, and cloud rendering that makes any photoreal environment available anytime for the purpose of telling story, will radically change our art.