While The Man in the High Castle, for instance, had one of the lowest costs per first stream after its first season, $63, that number jumped up to a whopping $829 following the production of Season Two. Mozart in the Jungle season two, despite having one of the studio’s lowest budgets at $37 million, cost $581 per first stream. Feminist cult favorite Good Girls Revolt was singled out as the highest cost per stream: $1,560 against its $81 million season one budget. The show got the axe after one season and just 1.6 million viewers.
Amazon execs, Reuters says, believe the first series you watch after signing up deserves the credit for luring you to Prime (whether you liked the show or not apparently doesn’t matter, nor is it clear whether you need to finish a full season of a show for it to count). Unfortunately, Reuters chose to only publish a fraction of the data it says it obtained, making it hard to draw any broad conclusions about the relative success or failure of Amazon shows.
While dealers say the majority of sales are still consummated in person, often in the framework of long-term relationships, the seeds of those relationships are increasingly being sown online, rather than through traditional routes like art fairs and referrals. The stakes are high: Galleries’ long-term survival may ultimately depend on building up a robust digital presence.
Ned Beauman, who writes conspiracy novels: “When we observe the Alt-Right questioning the established facts and the established world order, the last thing we should do is offer them a monopoly on that attitude. Nonetheless, if I had just written a novel that extolled, say, the spiritual joys of being alone with nature, and meanwhile enormous numbers of ill-prepared people were being found dead in the woods after succumbing to snakebites or dehydration, I might try to introduce some balance into my next paean to the wilderness.”
“The use of YouTube is no accident. The internet is a great way for fans to party contrapuntally. Online musicians have turned dozens of songs into fugues, from ‘Uptown Funk‘ to the ‘Star Wars‘ theme and ‘Old MacDonald‘.” (Even the fight songs of the two Super Bowl teams got fuguified.) “Others are making older pieces easier to understand. By adding scrolling videos to the music – each voice marked by different lines of colour – Stephen Malinowski lets fans follow the subject with their eyes as well as their ears.”
And they do – more, oddly, than on screen, let alone in real life. Peter Libbey looks at the reason profanity packs the punch it does (and when it doesn’t) – from The Mother****** with the Hat to Jerry Springer – The Opera, where even God curses.
Properly conceived, leisure could be the ultimate social safety net for an era of technologically driven uncertainty. It is potentially a space for bootstrapping new “careers,” which may or may not adhere to the traditional forms of self-employment or wage labor. It is also a space where one can move beyond the career-as-identity paradigm altogether, and contribute to one’s community through cultural and civic activities that are ignored in economic models because they are unremunerated.
For all categories of information — politics, entertainment, business and so on — we found that false stories spread significantly farther, faster and more broadly than did true ones. Falsehoods were 70 percent more likely to be retweeted, even when controlling for the age of the original tweeter’s account, its activity level, the number of its followers and followees, and whether Twitter had verified the account as genuine.
Not long ago, the scientists and software developers who pioneered the World Wide Web thought it would democratize publishing and usher in a more open, educated and thoughtful chapter of history. But while the Internet and its offshoot technologies have improved society and daily life in many ways, they have been an unmitigated disaster for the way we communicate and learn.
The website, which makes literary works in the public domain available free of charge to users anywhere, was sued by a German publisher for offering books by Thomas Mann, whose works are out of copyright in the U.S. (where Gutenberg is based) but not in Germany. Late last week, a German court ruled in favor of the publisher, and Project Gutenberg made itself unavailable in the the Federal Republic.
“At the end of 2017, US hip-hop star Nelly played a men-only concert in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia; US country singer Toby Keith headlined a similar gig earlier in the year. These shows were flagged as landmark progress, in a strict Gulf state where music was apparently deemed ‘haram’. It’s certainly surreal to watch clips of Nelly pumping up a party where females are banned; in fact, pop culture has long reigned in this Kingdom – and its 1980s powerhouse was the Saudi bootleg cassette shop.”
The space was used for storage until, well, recently, when they took up the floorboards, only to find literally centuries worth of detritus – including many different centuries of stained glass blown in by bombs (or simple breakage).
The key problem for the Oscars is not, as Hollywood’s critics on the right sometimes suggest, that the movie industry’s liberal politics are dragging down both box office numbers and Oscar ratings — that the desire to preach is swamping the desire to entertain. There is a political problem, but it is secondary: The key issue for the academy is that the Hollywood system no longer produces enough of the kind of movies that a mass-audience awards spectacle requires.
Netflix says 70 percent of its streams end up on connected TVs instead of phones, tablets or PCs. That number isn’t a shock — Netflix has been clear about the importance of TVs for a long time, and it’s why the company has spent a lot of energy working out integration deals with pay TV distributors like Comcast and Sky — but it’s a good reminder that not everything is moving to the phone.
First of all, argues Stuart Heritage, nobody, not even a poor old TV critic, can watch anything close to that much. Second, “Netflix is gaining a reputation as a provider that throws buckets of money at stuff nobody else wants. … Third, if this isn’t an unsustainable land-grab, I don’t know what is.”
The live show was broadcast by ABC and it attracted an average of 26.5 million viewers according to Nielsen, a 20 percent decline on last year’s 32.9 million. The previous record low was set in 2008 when 31.8 million viewers tuned in to watch Jon Stewart host the event. That year, Oscar chaos was narrowly avoided after an 11-week writers’ strike in Hollywood.
Women accounted for 52 percent of moviegoers in the U.S. and Canada in 2016, according to the most recent annual study by the Motion Picture Association of America. But on the internet, and on ratings sites, they’re a much smaller percentage.
“The percentage of people that read books, newspapers, or magazines in the bathroom, according to a survey by the plumbing-fixture company American Standard. … One Oregon resident realized the amount of time spent reading in the bathroom could be an interesting business opportunity.” And thus Uncle John’s Bathroom Reader was born.
“Greet audience members, take tickets, work the concession stands, run the elevator. Point the way to seats, restrooms, box offices and exits. These are some of the tasks of a volunteer usher at theaters across New York City. The lure: a free ticket. The competition: increasingly fierce.”
Whereas before Disney may have been the studio making more money at the box office than everyone else, they may end up as the only studio making anymoney at the box office. And that, in turn, will cause trickle-down effects throughout the industry. All the way down to movie theaters, many of which will have to close as a result. Looking forward from this point, I think the big movie theater chains are in trouble. They’ve known this for a while, which is why there has been so much consolidation. But whereas before, it seemed like it would be a long, drawn out death, I now believe we’re nearing this finale sooner than many thought.
Since peak plastic in 2001, CD sales have dropped 88%, from 712 million units to 85.4 million in 2017, according to Nielsen Music. With casual music fans done with discs in favor of streaming services like Spotify, Pandora and Apple Music, Best Buy is ceding the market to online retailers including Amazon and independent stalwarts such as Amoeba Music.
The surprising result is that students who received multiple field trips experienced significantly greater gains on their standardized test scores after the first year than did the control students. If we combine math and ELA tests, we see a gain of 12.4 percent of a standard deviation at p < 0.01, which translates into roughly 87 additional days of learning.
The Art Team is part of the Barnes’ continuing effort to deepen its ties with its audience. Initiated by Shelley Bernstein, chief experience officer and deputy director of audience engagement, probably best known for her work with digital technology, the Art Team is notable for its relative lack of tech, at least for now.
When one such community in England did this, many tongues were clucked and pearls clutched. “Why inappropriate?”, writes Michele Hanson, “It looked more like gymnastics than rudeness to me. … [The residents] were perhaps sick and tired of bingo, singalongs, banging tambourines, crosswords, telly, chair-yoga, arts and crafts, mindfulness and reminiscences. Not that I want to criticise these pastimes – they’re all lovely, if that’s what you like – but pole dancing makes a refreshing change.”
Noting that “many commentators often conflate ‘museum’ with ‘art museum’,” Bob Beatty points out that there are far more history museums than art museums in this country. Oddly, attendance figures broken out for history museums are surprisingly scarce, but Beatty runs the numbers he can.
The National Gallery had 6.3 million visitors in 2016, but this fell to 5.2 million last year, a drop of 17%. The NPG did much worse, with numbers decreasing from 1.9 million to 1.3 million—a fall of 35%. The data for May to December 2017, as reported in the Times newspaper, presented an even more dismal picture, with a decline for the NPG of 42%.
In the not-so-distant future, we will be presented with the version of the news we wish to read — not the news that some reporter, columnist or editorial board decides we need to read. And it will be entirely written by artificial intelligence (AI).
“IMAX is hugely popular, while virtual reality movies are gaining steam. But what about film inventions that never took off? When will they get their due? … We asked four film experts to each write about a different flop. Some ideas were on the right track and would eventually be realized in one form or another. But others are probably best relegated to the dustbin of history.”
To revisit that stat about how few people have seen any of this year’s nominees: I keep wondering why at this point, with so many ways to watch movies on-demand or stream them, the Academy hasn’t just made the movies available for everyone to see on some platform ahead of the Oscars for some sort of fee. People are genuinely curious about, say, Lady Bird or Call Me by Your Name by the time the Oscars roll around, but don’t necessarily have access to seeing them. Sure, the devil’s advocate could argue they might have had their chance to see them when they were in wide release. But there’s also something to be said for the way our habits have changed to be conditioned to streaming from home, and that interest often isn’t piqued until, basically, right now, when the Oscars are about to happen.