Tag Archives: media

THE REAL AND VIRTUAL SELVES: WHAT IS SOCIAL MEDIA DOING TO BOTH?

I don’t know about you, but scrolling down my news feeds, I sometimes feel I’m reading about people and lives I have absolutely no idea about. These are definitely not the same people I met socially or went to school with. They didn’t talk this way. In fact, from what I remember, a lot of them didn’t talk at all. Have they only discovered their fiery, opinionated, demonstrative selves after the advent of social media? I often wonder.
I think social media has done a lot for the aspirations we all nurtured, somewhere within ourselves. Either knowingly or unknowingly. We all wanted to ‘take a stand’ on issues, ‘voice our opinions’ or sometimes just crib. It could be the most relevant or those highly trivial issues in life. But Facebook and Twitter have thrown open their doors for us to pour our hearts out.
It could be the rape of the 23 year old girl in Delhi the nation was incensed by. I truly believe it gave all of us a chance to express and spread the angst. Nobody escaped the furore. A lot of us who weren’t in the city or couldn’t make it to the protests gave reason for those protests to happen. And for the authorities to come out and try to give an answer.
At the same time, it could also be something as banal as a family event. But it gives you the opportunity to share your joy with the world. It helps you keep in touch with people whom you’d otherwise have no chance of ever knowing anything about.
Social media has therefore made life a lot easier and a lot more complicated. Easier by transcending barriers of geography, caste, class, age, sex and financial status to bring us all together on issues that matter and in not losing touch with the world.
But also complicated because, in fostering these different meanings online, we don’t really see that social media tends to eclipse our real selves. We often end up talking, behaving in ways, doing things, we don’t, otherwise in life. It’s like a split personality. You meet these strange people each time you log into your account. Social media has given us both the reason and the platform to be the people we aren’t or cannot be in life. There are things that are done only online. And it’s something we all accept. But do we wonder if it contrasts starkly with how we are once we look up from the computer screen?
It’s fine if we’re weaving dreams. But do we at least realise we’re doing so? Also, these are not just ‘different’ people we’re creating out of ourselves on the Internet. Very often, they are people who are nothing like us, and if you met them somewhere, they would probably tell you they can’t imagine that other, ‘real’ side to you. It’s that much of a contrast.
Which is why our social awkwardness and incompetence in our daily lives are even scarier. It’s like we’ve chosen to live for and invest our energies into only the online world. One actually begins to wonder if we’ve chosen the virtual world to escape the real, or if we find it difficult to come back to the real after being in the confines of the virtual for so long. Because clearly, there is some part of us that we leave in one when we travel to the other. And that is the part that makes all the difference.

Post By: Lata Jha 

 

 

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What if Kafka and Nietzsche were great Facebook friends?

I wonder what if Nietzsche and Kafka were around. And what if they had their own Facebook profiles? Interestingly, what if they were friends with each other on Facebook? I guess their friends would have a great lesson on philosophy every day!
Imagine a day which starts with Kafka’s status update: “It is not necessary to accept everything as true, one must only accept it as necessary.” You wonder what this chap is trying to say. Then suddenly Nietzsche replies, “There are no facts, only interpretations”, and you reach the level of infinite amazement. The conversation does not stop there! Kafka has more to add. He replies back with, “People are sewn into their skins for life and cannot alter any of the seams, at least not with their own hands.” You, the mutual friend of Kafka and Nietzsche, gets a notification because by this time you have liked the update, not because you understood a word of it, but because you did not! You read this and feel more excited about this chap, whom you have never met in real life. You added him because you saw 43 mutual friends and a very interesting profile picture of “infinite circles”! You find no relevance in Kafka’s reply, but you feel he must have some reason to write this. You stalk his profile and see more updates and conversations with his FB friend Nietzsche.
“By believing passionately in something that still does not exist, we create it. The nonexistent is whatever we have not sufficiently desired” writes Kafka two days ago, to which Nietzsche replies, “Hey dude, you know what, he who would learn to fly one day must first learn to stand and walk and run and climb and dance; one cannot fly into flying.” Kafka likes the comment accompanied by a smiley! You are amazed to see how they are finding reasons to converse. You then rush to Nietzsche profile only to see his profile flooded with one liner, all with Kafka’s likes! He writes, “When marrying, ask yourself this question: Do you believe that you will be able to converse well with this person into your old age? Everything else in marriage is transitory.” Kafka gives a reply to this, “Start with what is right rather than what is acceptable.” You start doubting your marriage!
In one conversation between the two you come across an update by Nietzsche where he is talking about God. “God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him. How shall we comfort ourselves, the murderers of all murderers? What was holiest and mightiest of all that the world has yet owned has bled to death under our knives: who will wipe this blood off us? What water is there for us to clean ourselves? What festivals of atonement, what sacred games shall we have to invent? Is not the greatness of this deed too great for us? Must we ourselves not become gods simply to appear worthy of it?” Like always, you are clueless! And you search for Kafka’s reply. He writes, “What is gayer than believing in a household god?” What does that even mean? Nothing! And you go back to your wall. You look at it, with finite eyes and think “A first sign of the beginning of understanding is the wish to die. But he who has a why to live for can bear almost any how.”

Post By:Nihal Parashar 

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UK speaker’s at Publishing Next conference

CinnamonTeal Publishing, a division of Dogears Print Media Pvt. Ltd, is organizing Publishing Next, a two-day Conference on the future of publishing on 16 and 17 September 2011 in Goa. 

Publishing Next is being supported by the British Council who is actively involved in promoting creative entrepreneurship (www.britishcouncil.org.in/yce) in India through programmes that share the UK’s expertise and experience of developing the creative economy and by supporting ecologies within which it can flourish. 

The UK speakers at the conference include:

Elin Haf Gruffydd, Director, Mercator Centre University of Aberystwyth

Elin is the Director of the Mercator Institute for Media, Languages and Culture, a research institute based at the Department of Theatre, Film and Television Studies at Aberystwyth University that specialises in the fields of media, publishing, communication and translation, with a particular expertise in multilingual contexts. Elin is Senior Lecturer in Media and Creative Industries (undergraduate and postgraduate studies) and Director of Knowledge Transfer and Enterprise at the same department. Digital Creative Economy, is currently a strong research focus for Mercator and Elin is supervising several PhD projects in this field. Mercator is coordinator of the Minority Languages Media Research Network and is home to the Wales Literature Exchange (http://www.walesliterature.org) and Literature Across Frontiers (http://www.lit-across-frontiers.org/) and is one of the key partners in Mercator Network of Language Diversity Centres www.mercator-research.eu.

James Bridle, Owner and Director, Bookable

James pushes the boundaries of literature through creative technology. He is the director of Bookkake, a technology-led publisher of classic transgressive literature. He is also the developer of bkkeepr, a social reading application, and London Lit Plus, an open-source literary festival. He writes about literature and technology at http://booktwo.org, and has edited and written for numerous publications, online and off. James was one of the finalists of the UK YCE Publishing Award 2009.

Michael Bhaskar, Digital Publishing Director, Profile Books

Michael (www.michaelbhaskar.com) is currently Digital Publishing Director at leading independent publisher Profile Books (www.profilebooks.com). He is responsible for spearheading their digital strategy, ebook program and digital business development in creating new products and platforms. Whilst there he has produced games, apps and created a commercially successful digital publishing program. Previously Michael was Digital Editor at Macmillan, where he worked on their large and profitable ebooks program, a Facebook app and several iPhone apps amongst other innovative projects, and wrote for The Digitalist blog. Over the past few years Michael has written extensively on digital publishing. He regularly lectures at publishing university courses around the UK and has recently completed a paper for the journal Logos.  He has worked at the literary agency Rogers, Coleridge and White, reviewed books at The Daily Telegraph and worked for an economics research firm, as well as building websites like www.quikqr.com, a 2-d barcode generator. 

Oliver Brooks, Co-founder, Completelynovel

Oliver is the co-founder of a team made up of web technologists working in the book publishing space. They work on the following two projects: ValoBox.com (www.valobox.com) is a pay-as-you-go eReader powered by social commerce.  The pay-as-you-go micro-purchase system means any part of a book can be accessed with a single click. The system is 100% HTML5 so can be used from any device with a web browser and the content can be anything you can put on a website (audio, video, games, and interactive elements). Social retail (peer-to-peer selling) eliminates the traditional expensive retailers. This means if a user shares a link or embeds a ValoBox in their website/feed or mobile app they will receive 25% of proceeds. The direct link means publishers get live analytics such as which parts of their books are most popular. CompletelyNovel.com (www.completelynovel.com) is a unique publishing hub combining a publishing community with powerful publishing tools such as print-on-demand and social media promotion. Authors and publishers can create, distribute and promote books and interact with their readers. The system is designed to make the complicated publishing process simple and affordable enough for anyone to use.

Gavin Summers, Digital Services Manager, Hodder Education

Gavin is the digital project manager for Hodder Education (www.hoddereducation.co.uk), a leading educational publisher in the UK working on a wide range of digital products, including online applications (e.g. Dynamic Learning and Practise Every Question), ebooks, interactive whiteboard materials and smartphone applications. As a side project, he is the founder of BookMachine , which in addition to building a valuable network of publishing professionals, is also an experiment in how movements can be created around a brand through creative use of social media tools.

Titash Neogi, Founder, Sievelogic Software

Titash won the India YCE Interactive 2011 award. He built Bibkosh (www.bibkosh.com) a knowledge curation platform that allows academics, students and professionals to create, curate knowledge and collaborate. He will be discussing the potential of http://themeefy.com as a marketing tool for publishers.

Prathibha Sastry, Head of Publications, Jinibooks (www.jinibooks.com) and Co-founder of JiniLabs (www.jinilabs.com)

Pratibha won the India YCE Screen award in 2008. At that point she was the Managing Director, Editor and Publisher of South Movie Scenes, a platform for the film and entertainment industry. She will be participating in the panel discussion Where is Digital Books Headed?

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India’s Creative Industries

Highlights 

  • Media and Entertainment is one of the fastest growing sectors inIndia. The entertainment industry estimated at about US$ 9.4 billion in revenues in year 2010 is expected to reach revenues of US$ 10.7 billion in 2011.
     
  • With the advent of new technologies such as 2G and 3G, and increasing mobile penetrationIndia’s music industry is scaling on a high note.
     
  • India is the largest film producing market in the world and one of the largest employment sectors in India. 
     
  • India is the third biggest Internet market, with over 100 million internet user base and the amount of time spent on the Internet for an average user in the country is 16 hours a week. According to Google estimates, 40 million users access Internet through mobile phones and download 30 million applications. New technologies such as 3G, broadband and mobile infrastructure are also helping in propelling this trend. 
     
  • The growth of the fashion industry in India is mainly driven by the growing exposure of domestic designers at international forums attracting a large number of international clients, launch of focused business education courses for emerging designers and the establishment of an industry association. Rising affluence has increased brand awareness among Indian consumers. The Indian textile industry provides direct employment to over 35 million people. 
     
  • Growing wealth and disposable incomes of the country’s middle and upper classes, facilitated by the growth in retail infrastructure for entertainment products and services, and the demands for creativity in business is all opening up vast opportunities for businesses in this sector.

 Copyright: India Brand Equity Foundation, March 2011 (http://www.ibef.org)

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