YouTube vs. Hulu

Well, I watch videos pretty regularly on both YouTube and Hulu, so the first thing that came to mind when I knew we would be comparing the video watching experience between the two, was the difference in…How do I say it? Professionalism, Commercialism, Uniformity? Essentially, Hulu is highly regulated in the content that it appears, in how they let you watch videos, how advertisments are experienced. The video quality is excellent. Youtube is a lot more variable in terms of all these things; particiuarly how and if the content is regulated, and the extent to which Youtube controls what is posted and what isn’t.

I watched an episode of Modern Family on Hulu and a video of Florence + The Machine performing “Shake it Out” on X-Factor UK on YouTube. My expectations were met. When I began my episode of Modern Family I was given the option to watch one long extended-form commercial and then watch the episode straight through without interruption, or to proceed with regular “commercial breaks”. I obviously selected the former, muted my hulu for 3 minutes and un-paused my itunes. Had I chosen the latter option, watching Modern Family would have been very much like watching it on a TV, with commercial breaks from big name sponsors. As an interesting note, Hulu also has a bar at the top of the screen asking if the ad is relevant to you. A great example of how the internet hones in on our interests to market more specifically to us. On YouTube, I actually experienced zero advertising before, after, at the bottom of the screen…while watching the performance. I watched my video in peace. After the video, and along the sides, I was simply provided with links to similar videos.

The different video viewing experiences between the two sites I think captures that they are run quite differently; by a large network with lots of regulations, versus more user-based.

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Blog 5: Write about how you experience content online— do you pay attention to copyrights or other regulations?

Usually online I try to respect copyrights and property rights. I don’t download music illegally or movies. Although, I do that more out of laziness and lack of motivation. I do go to Projectfree.tv and IceFilms.org to watch my TV shows for free. If these websites are surviving and not getting shut down, I have to assume they either haven’t been caught, or are doing something to make their supply of this material legitimate and lawful. I’m not downloading anything, I’m just consuming the information, so I don’t feel at fault.

In high school I posted up my senior photos from that fancy shmancy place that charged us way too much for a rinky dink picture. Legally I don’t think I was supposed to lay claim to them because they have their name stamped across the front, but it’s my face, I do what I want with it. Facebook has been asking me to tag the company in one of my pictures, even though it doesn’t have any text resembling the place or saying where it is from. Kind of freaks me out that it knows where I went. I refuse to tag them, that’s free marketing for their business, because I look so gosh darn adorable in it (joke). I guess I don’t actually respect copyrights as much as I claim to, if I’m avoiding the company in this way…


i-dosing…trippy??

Fearful to venture into the world of chatroulette and unsure of where to start on myspace, my curiousity was peaked by the phenomenon known as “i-dosing”. Initially unsure of what i-dosing was I naturally had to do the first thing one ever does when beginning research: I googled. Google returned a lot of information, but an article on the Smoking Jacket summed it up quite nicely: http://www.thesmokingjacket.com/entertainment/tsj-investigates-will-i-dosing-get-you-high. To sum it up for you, the idea behind i-dosing is that certain music, when listened to, can alter your brainwaves to stimulate the effects of various illicit drugs. I can certainly see why many people, particularly teens, have become excited over the prospect that simply by downloading an mp3 and listening through headphones, one can get “high”. It is important to use headphones because two different tones (binaural beats) are played in each ear but through headphones are perceived by the brain as a single pulsating noise. I-dosing websites offer beats whose effects apparently range from those of  “aspirin” to “marijuana” to “heroin” and “The gates of Hades”…uhhhh….

Call me a skeptic on this whole i-dosing trend…but I guess I’ll have to try it out now. The website I am on warns me to lie down in a comfortable place. I chose to see if I can have an “out of body experience” which they describe as:

  • You will be able to leave your physical body and start exploring our world and others. OBEs can spontaneously occur during a near death experience, such as through car accident, an operation, and clinical death. The person experiencing this state will suddenly see his or her own body, as if he or she is standing next to it or floating above it. The sensation is like that of being an observer. You will be able to float in any direction you wish and move through walls. Most importantly, you will remember everything and in great detail. The “Out Of Body” track helps you to achieve an OBE while lying in the comfort of your bed. By using high Beta waves, the recording will guide your brainwaves directly to an OBE state, allowing you to leave your body and start exploring new levels of consciousness.

Unforunately the full version is between $10 and 15$ so the sample will have to do. Let’s hope I’m not too incapacitated to finish the rest of my blog post….

Well I did feel very relaxed and sleepy for that one-minute sample, but no crazy effects yet. It’s a very cool idea that sounds could have such a significant effect on one’s body-mind state but I am not sure I buy it. To be fair, I didn’t get the full experience. I would be curious to hear if anyone else has had a more intense experience with i-dosing. While I believe that sounds, music in particular, have the power to shape and change mood I don’t know if they can induce such powerful physical states. I won’t be trading in my coffee for the “coffee break/ energy” beat anytime soon.