113MC Comparisons of the daily show and have i got news for you.

April 30, 2009

The Daily Show and Have I Got News For You.


While both shows deal in political satire both the approach and the production values differ greatly.

The Daily Show approaches political satire by reaching out to a wide audience, dealing with the days news but with out the garbage. Obviously political news takes centre stage on this show; however the show attempts to reach out to a predominantly young audience using a mixture of pop culture and college humour to make the mundane humdrum of daily politics seem interesting.

            Have I Got News for you on the other hand seems to attempt to reach out to the well informed and intellectuals in society, possibly those of the ages 18 and up. Its jokes and items come across as those that require the viewer to be fully knowledgeable of all the weeks’ news to find the show funny. This is something The Daily Show does not do, usually the news events are explained as the joke unfurls.



 By Comparison though while Daily Show mimics a TV news talk show, Have I got news for you seems to remind me of a night down the pub discussing the weeks topical news events. Most of the jokes like those told in the pub are generally old and slightly as dated as the set design. However here in lies another difference between the US Studio show and the UK studio show. While the BBC builds using plywood the Daily shows budget allows for extravagant sets and blue screen entertainment.

            The items on the Daily show were the higher of quality on the 27th April, the swine flu outbreak was obviously top of the agenda, the items ran were of the highest calibre comedy wise as the host and presenters exploited the medias outrageous reaction to the outbreak with some of the best material I have seen delivered on the show.

            By comparison on the same night Have I Got News for you being a recorded studio show made no reference to such events, in fact for a topical news show it seemed at least a week behind. In addition the celebrity guests on Have I Got News For you are made to seem like a side attraction, in fact the constant back and forth between Hislop and Merton lambasting everything they can leaves little room for the guests to speak, in particular their chosen target a Tory shadow cabinet minister.

            Jon Stewart to makes attempts to mock his guest, in this case the French minister of commerce. However it is done with well timed jokes, and aside from this the item proves to be an enlightening look in to European politics. While Merton and His lop come across as two school bullies.

            This adds a unique element to the Daily show, while Merton and Hislop proceed to tear apart the host, and guests Jon Stewart will often engage with the audience, Hislop will often do the same but comes across as a rather posh snob simply trying to talk down to the masses. While Jon Stewart presents himself as a man who understands what the people are going through.


Why cant I watch yor product

March 19, 2009

Ok, so March 9 2009 will go down as a very infamous day in Internet history. The day that Youtube blocked the UK from accessing its online Music video content.


This all stems form an argument between the Youtube company and the PRS over, what else money. Now the UK is not the first nation Youtube has blocked certain content to, China, Iran, Pakistan all have either been blocked or blocked Youtube due to its content.

I know this is 2 week old news but last night something happened that lead me to blog this as I felt it relivant.

I enjoy my ice hockey, however unless I catch the late night game on Channel 5 I have to make do with online coverage, usually highlights via youtube.However sometimes I listen to the live games via the AM640 RADIO NETWORK


However listening to a hockey game is a little different to watching one, so I attempted to see if I could PPV the game, NHL.COM offers this facility. Oh wait only if you live in the USA or Canada. See despite the NHL’s status as an international sports league, with coverage and interest worldwide, unless I live in the USA, or Canada I cant watch the Leafs play.  The same can be said of the Daily Show. Unless I live in the USA I am unable to view full episodes of the Daily show, I must watch the show in segments complete with adds.

So I still have to listen to the radio online, which isnt bad. However this disagreement with Youtube and PRS and the situation with the american net neutrality lockout I wonder, will we be soon paying licence fees on youtube or internet streams. Will Youtube soon add the UK to its list of complete bans?

However I will say this, the ban isnt totally blanket, most unoficial vids can be accessed from UK pc’s.

And the award goes to

March 19, 2009

Ok, so this week I conclude my time working on Convergant media.  And I have to say, firstly its been a real eye opener studying these programmes. Photoshop was fairly easy to grasp as I had prior experience. However the other two programmes were a high learning curve for me.

Now I know i did a prior blofg on this but I figured Id blog on the highs and lows of my experiences with these programmes.


On reflection, the fact that my works here were lacking in my usual creative ability,at first I overloaded them and then I feel I underdid them if you get what I mean.

There really were no problems with photoshop at all for me, so no low to report here.



Argh!!!!! is all would have to say about Flash for the 2 weeks I was studying Flash. Mez will attest to my problems. I think for the most part my biggest struggle was grasping the way the layers worked, and how the different types of image, symbol and file worked together. However with some instruction my problems actually faded and I saw how simple it was to animate and use the tweens to move between scenes.


Strangely this was a programme I took to like a duck to water, despite my early reservations and fears that I would struggle with web design, once I got past using bad habbits I somehow had picked up it became an extremely simple process.

However I will admit that I struggled immensly with, and am still working on the use of div tags in my web designs.  However I will continue to try and develope this while working on a personal project.

Retroing it up

March 16, 2009

I’m an 80’s child. I was born in 1986. Which means I was present for what many would consider the last golden age of television.

Modern TV is under serious threat of going the way of the dodo. It’s in danger of becoming extinct, overheads, loss of sponsors, massive shortfalls in licence money. All these are problems facing modern day TV. However the biggest threat is the Internet. Why do you ask.

Well there are a number of reasons.

1. The digital TV age.

TIVO, Sky Digital +, Apple TV  these are all now encroaching on the market that standard public broadcast media offers. Why, simply because they offer the viewer something more than say BBC programmes do, choice. The simple truth is when I’m looking for something to watch I want to see something I’m interested in. That’s why I choose to watch niche channel ls like Dave, Sci-fi, Extreme, Zone Horror, Scuzz and Kerrang. They offer me what I want instead of what the network thinks I want. Which brings me to a secondary subject


Reality TV.

In my opinion, this is the cancer killing public service broadcasting. Since Big Brother debut in 2001 there have been thousands of reality TV shows. In fact nearly every aspect of life has been covered in reality TV. In the beginning of this post I discussed how I grew up in the golden age of TV, I feel I did, I mean look at the list of shows you had back then, a time when writers actually had to come up with characters, when they actually had to invent stories and not rely on dusty old stereotypical story structures. Transformers, Dino Riders, M.A.S.K Power Rangers, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Bucky O’haire, all kids shows yes but that was the TV i grew up on, Byker Grove, Grange Hill, Eeerie Indiana, Goosebumps, Are You Afraid Of The Dark, Ghostbusters. Back then when coming up with shows the writers didn’t just go, hmmm what aspect of life can we exploit this week, they took the time to think up a show and characters. Sadly with yet another series of Big Bro on the way, and more x-factor, dancing on ice, celebrity get me outta here etc etc ect is on the way this year. More nails in the coffin of TV.

Now occasionally a jewel appears in this mud of reality tv, Dr Who making his comeback, secret Diary of a call girl, Primeval, Life On Mars there have been some good shows on our screen of late. However I live now in the golden age of convergence, which means I don’t have to tolerate all the rubbish on tv.

Now thanks to web streaming, Digital plus, and iTunes, I can watch anything I want. Recently I’ve been retroing things up. Reliving my childhood.

In the last month I again have watched no TV, however on Youtube Ive watched all three seasons of G.I.JOE The cartoon, Dino Riders, The Centurions, and The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. I was also able to watch Twilight and John Pertwees entire tenure as Dr Who on Dailymotion.

Reliving the golden age.

Aint Youtube wonderful.

Quite simply put, with everything and anything I want to see at my very fingertips, no matter what the show or the era why would I need to watch boring old TV?

Fame is fleeting

March 11, 2009

You know its wierd, somebody once said everyone will get thier five minutes of fame. And that is so true in this day and age. All you have to do is look at the latest crazes in viral videos sweeping the internet.

Seems thanks to Youtube everyone who owns an internet connection and a webcam can be the star. 

Now I’m a huge fan of the Toronto Maple Leafs. I enjoy visiting http://www.mapleleafs.nhl.com and http://www.leafspace.com. And its through this I have discoverd the vlog of Steve Dangle

Steve doesnt report on the lastest cutting edge events, he simply reports on the leafs games and any leafs activity. However he’s a bonifide internet star, at least in the eyes of his followers and leafspace members.

Infact Steve has well over 2000 subcribers, and 136,000 channel views to his name Steve is seen as the premiere Vlogger on the Maple Leafs, held in fact in such high regard that he was asked by the clubs own sports network Leafst TV to present coverage on game day and on Trade Deadline day in the NHL.

Now how come I’m talking about some no name hockey hack, not a well known viral. Simply put the Internet is full of people desperate to find fame with viral vids, take the fat dancing kind, the history of dance video.  In fact to see the effect of viral fame simply look at this music video from the band Weezer

My point is Viral fame comes and goes, your vid is youtubes pick of the day, or most recomended or most watched, but eventually people will get sick or bored of you.

But Vloggers like Steve Dangle no chance will his viewers get bored with him, who knows where this could take him. He could wind up the host of his own Hockey show some day. Hes already spokeman for http://www.hockeytube.com

My sites up

March 11, 2009

It needs finishing but my sites up


Nearing the close

March 11, 2009

Well I’m nearing the end of my study on Convergent media here in Coventry. And I feel compelled to reflect upon the various elements of work I have coverd during the course of my unit.


The only element I was familiar with coming in to this unit. Photoshop as a creative tool is a favourite of mine as it presents the oppourtunity for somebody like me who has no drawing ability to create interesting images. However my skills were fairly mediocre to begin with and were ammature at best. However by the end of my study on this unit I now feel more comfortable, and able to produce worrk I couldnt dream of before.

The greatest problems I had to overcome while learning how to use photoshop was cutting one image to add to another. Before my outines had always been roungh and needed smooothing over with a rubber. However now I’m more confident and able, utilizing the magic wand tool I’ve been able to create some stunning images away from my coursework.

As for my coursework images, I will agree in saying that they are too plain, too boring. I originally tried a few experimental things, experiemnting with a them of past and present of convergance but ultimately it seemed there wasnt enough data and the images seemed to complex.

However as can be seen from my postings of additional works what I’v become capable of.


This was a huge challeneg, and its an ongoing learning aexperience for me, I’d never used dreamweaver before and so was in at the deep end from the begining. The biggest hurdle to overcome was my build up of bad habbits from years of geocities use. I have spent way to much time using boxes and not looking at div tags. However Mez was able to pint me in the right direction on this and have been able to fix this problem. However I still need to practice my skills to keep them sharp.


If I thought Dreamweaver was a challenege then I was a fool. Flash animation has been definately the hardest element of this course to master. And looking at my product you possibly would not believe that. The biggest mistakes, and the one obsticle I had to overcome was simply understanding how to programme the animation. However once I soon realised, with some coaching from Mez that it was just like Adobe Premiere ,I was away. However again I must continue to develop my skills in this area.


March 10, 2009

Oh my god so funny, just goes to show how confusing new media tech can be. And how news agencys can be quick to confuse new with good.

Its a segement called Twitter frenzy, all about the rise of Twitter in use by news media and by congressman.


Get a life… I Do I have Second Life

March 10, 2009

Ok, a few years ago a little computer lab called Linden Labs created a virtual, interactive world. That world was second life, the next step in the evolution of social networking.


The only way I can describe second life is the way my friend Tom puts it. Its the Matrix in low resolution. In this world you can go anywhere do anything, and if you have the cash buy anything.

Amazingly this virtual world is actually a place were real world money is exchanged, at an exchange of 300 linden dollars to a pound.  In second life for the right price I could buy my own tropical paradise for a fraction of what it costs me in the real world.

It seems users are quite happy to now part company with hard earned money so they can say I own 12 virtual acres. And one can see the appeal considering how the current real estate market is in vesting in land on second life seems like a much sounder idea.

Or so you would think. While real world real estate agents are bound by laws, red tape and other constraints. Second life realters are bound by no such laws, in fact some go so far as to set up their own banks, again bound by no law. Individuals will invest in these banks only for them to disappear.

It just goes to show your money isnt safe in cyber space.

However this isn’t the darkest side to Second Life, there is a seedy underbelly. Unbelievably users will log on to Second life in order to engage in sexual activity with other users and prostitutes. Now I know what your thinking, this is just a progression of the idea of phone sex or text sex or IM sex. Well in a way yes, however what is interesting is that a large number of individuals are using this as a way to cheat on their partners. Just recently an American couple filed for divorce over this type of behaviour. Yet this is part of the second life programme. Its things like this that make me wonder how far away we are from the sex scene in Demolition man becoming a reality.



Second life, is just like the real world, however its the real world as we as human beings would imagine it. Just as Morpheus says

” A man was born inside the Matrix, he had the power to reshape the world around him”

There are no ugly people, there are no ruined city scape’s, no rain or bad weather and no horrible diseases. Second life is the perfect world. But as Agent Smith says, our primitive cerebrum cant handle such a thing.

Strange how humans have strives to create perfection since the dawn of time yet a computer programmes has managed it.

However man built that computer programme.

The trends of social networking and the pit falls of note tagging

March 3, 2009

Social networking has exploded in recent years, the number of sites is still by the standards of other net explosions still small with only around 250 in existence the most note-able of these being Facebook and Myspace. As the two sides in this the battle of the biggest social networking sites wage a war for the lives of those individuals out there in cyber space a new trend has crossed the lines. 

Note tagging. 

In layman terms its junk mail, chain letters, you know the rules fill it out send it to two hundred people or bad luck will befall you. For a long time it hadn’t been happening on Facebook it was purely a myspace and Hotmail thing. But now its begun, tag twenty people, fill out a questionnaire about random things and random music related tests and then publish them. 

I find this whole thing annoying to put it simply, most people fill these out for one reason and one reason only, boredom. Ive seen it multiple times my friends filling out a note and tagging people simply because they are bored. 

Which begs the question, are things that bad in the real world that people are resorting even more to cyberspace only to find it boring as well, so they feel the need to annoy other people. I do look at these notes as fun sometimes.  But fill out the wrong answer and your in a world of trouble. I know, I recently filled out a note on facebook, next thing I knew my ex sends me a response to it. Simply put my current girlfriend did not like that at all. 

Notes on facebook were an inevitable thing, they are a trend of the social networking site. As such one can not exist without the other, its symbiotic its what Social networks are about finding out things about people you knew. 

But be warned, you may find out to much. Must be off now I’ve just received a notification telling me I’ve been tagged. Below is a link to my last note.