anybody remember "nathan peters' experiment" last year?

hold up... that was fake?
jesus christ!  i'm pretty on top of this list and i dont recall this.
i saw the video and knew the drama in nathans life, but the only thing i recalled him doing that was fake was some of the videos where he was like doing lines etc in front of his kids or something like that.  

nathan contacted me requesting his vlogdir entry be removed for legal reasons, which i helped him with.  so that was somehow part of it too? 

On 4/24/06, Anne Walk <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
anybody remember "nathan peters' experiment" last year?

one of the vloggers in the group staged a vlog of his children being taken away (i'm still not even clear on what happened after that episode!) when it was discovered to be an "experiment", people were understandably upset.

this time around, people seem to be less upset...but that could be because the vlogger in question was not a member of this particular vlogging community.

i think it's interesting to explore the ideas of truth and personal representation. i don't know if such heavy handedness is necessary to do so.

as for the violence, i agree completely with your impassioned commentary on violence in media and it's use as cathartic proxy. it titillates and then it punishes and we can go on with our lives, our demons sated.

one difference between "the media" representation of violence and Kevin's is that, with  Law and Order, we can treat is as entertainment. We already know it is fiction. with kevin, we think he is "one of us".

anyway, coming from an art backgroud myself, i've seen a lot of stuff like this and yes, you become jaded by it. the art world teaches you not to believe in anything (that's been my experience).

i'd like to ask you, jen, if you had seen the video online and did not see the student afterwards, as expected...if he had carried out the experiment more fully and left you and the school in the dark about it (perhaps even had relatives phone in with the bad news), would you still think it an interesting experiment or would it become something else?

On 4/24/06, Chuck Olsen < [EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:

Come to think of it - if Kevin's video had a Miller Lite logo at the
end, it would be genius. :-)

I remember camping out in the backyard in high school with my friends.
We brought out the cordless phone (yeah, high tech!) and made some
prank phone calls.

When it was my turn, I pretended I was in jail and desparate to
talk to my dad. I woke up some poor guy who obviously wasn't my
dad. "Oh shit! This is my only phone call.... I don't know what to do!"
Rather than hang up, this guy was genuinely anguished over my
situation and sincerely tried to help me.

Needless to say, I felt pretty shitty after I hung up. I became
wrapped up in my own prank, my own lie. This guy had an
emotional response. I was manipulating his empathy. And
that's just not fun. It felt wrong because empathy, I think, is
part of our moral core and part our brain chemistry.

It's only a matter of time before we see a real drunken death
on YouTube. Everyone who has watched Kevin's video will
probably be immediately skeptical, if not dismissive. What
a strange feeling it will be to have that reaction, only to find
out the death is real. Yes - it is fascinating I suppose.
And of course it's not just Kevin, but our world, saturated
with media violence.

One difference between Kevin's "prank" and, say, Ian's final
video where he's kidnapped - or most advertisements - is
whether or not you believe what you're seeing is real.
You don't see people die in advertisements. Or if you do, you
don't think it's real. Ian's final video was pretty obviously a joke.
So degree and context are big factors in our reactions. You know
Kevin and have all this context for his video, not to mention,
you know he's not dead. That's quite a different context than we have,
and certainly the content of his video is fairly extreme.

So in the end, I say all videobloggers must commit mass mock
suicide and agree to never believe anything we see in video.


--- In, Jen Simmons <[EMAIL PROTECTED]> wrote:
> Well for one I have to disagree that this is "worse" than the insidious
> creeping take-over of the vlogosphere imagination by corporate or
> corporate-copy-cat consumption-oriented / advertisy /
> product-placementy / slick-is-better /
> we-all-want-to-be-like-the-media-on-tv trends. I find that WAY more
> dangerous and problematic.
> I am wondering myself why I find this fascinating. I am surprised by my
> own reaction. Perhaps it's because I know Kevin and there's something
> not-typical about his approach to all the violent weird stupid
> perverted content that I am way way tired of after teaching student
> filmmaking in Philadelphia for the last three years. He is handling the
> same subjects, but somehow there is something else going on too --
> perhaps it's just that he's smart and it shows to me, while most of the
> other students make such work in such a mindless knee-jerk
> "stupid"/blind way.
> I think my reaction is mostly because of a workshop I've been in with
> Kevin taught by Ralph Lemon where we've been exploring danger and risk
> and fear all semester. Doing weird things like setting out to drop 40
> lb weights on our feet to see how we can't actually drop it on our
> feet, but will naturally jerk the body out of the way.... it's
> impossible, truly impossible to explain this by text, but it's been a
> great investigation of the fear we who are artists confront every time
> we try to make art. Artists live on the edge of real danger all the
> time. Somehow I can't separate this video Kevin made with that process
> of exploration, and in the context of that very specific investigation,
> this is hilarious.
> But... yeah... I think in any other context I too would be deeply
> disturbed and offended.
> I think it's interesting to me because I'm trying to figure out what
> the difference is in my self. And I am also asking in a deep deep way:
> what is happening here. What social rules are Kevin violating? How will
> the reaction unfold? Will there be a huge outcry? Or will this all blow
> over fairly quickly? Will people react? Or just take this in as one
> more thing...
> I see your point that it may be numbing us to real pain. I find the 27
> Law and Order and copycat shows completely irresponsible for exactly
> that reason. And find it completely ridiculous and amazing that NBC has
> gotten both super-christian in the last year  and super-violent (come
> on -- an AMY GRANT reality tv show??? and more than one "miracle"
> reality tv show... and more murder "investigations" than I've ever
> seen.) I'll be just change channels zipping past NBC and get assaulted
> by a scene of a graphic rape and murder. It seems like an extremely
> perverted rape-by-proxy thing, what, letting the viewers fantasize
> about what it would be like to rape and murder someone?? It' very
> offensive to me. And I see no one talking about it. Why aren't the
> christians outraged about that?? Instead they are freaking out over a
> gay kiss or people talking about evolution... it's crazy crazy crazy.
> I also know that I am numb to the violence in my student's work because
> it's so horrible here at Temple. The most unbelievably violent films
> get made by the undergraduates here. And no one talks about it. After
> four years I think my perspective is totally warped. And having people
> on the outside say -- "uh, no, this is not acceptable" is a welcome
> breath of fresh air.
> So people, please everyone say what you think. I want to hear what
> people really think and get a sense of where different people are on
> these issues -- some how that is fascinating to me. What do people
> think is the line that we shouldn't cross when it comes to violence? Is
> Kevin's film too much because it is violent? Or because it is lying?
> Or...
> jen
> jenSimmons
> On Apr 24, 2006, at 6:07 PM, Chuck Olsen wrote:
> >
> >  You find it fascinating - why? I find it tiresome and irresponsible.
> >  God, I must be getting old. I used to appreciate a good arty blog
> > prank.
> >
> >  The problem is this: Rather than using vlogs to enrich the human
> >  experience, and expand our exposure to the range of human experiences,
> >  pranks like this numb us to it. It numbs us to real death and real
> >  pain, and cheapens it.
> >
> >  This sort of prank is worse for the vlogosphere than any
> > advertisement.
> >
> >  --- In, Jen Simmons <jen@> wrote:
> >  >
> >  > I'm wondering whether to chime in now, or wait and watch this
> >  > discussion go for a while more. I find it fascinating.

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