Saturday, January 21, 2012

Become informed about the web war

I posted an entry into this blog a few days ago that I purposely censored to draw attention to the controversial Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect Intellectual Property Act (PIPA). Sure, it wasn’t remotely close to the ones done by Google and Wikipedia, but it was the least I could do.

Because there’s a massive web war brewing like no other and more people need to become informed. But now that politicians are realizing how dangerous SOPA and PIPA are to themselves and their reelections due to the massive protest made by internet-dwelling citizens, government and their aligned corporations are finding other ways to silence piracy until they can clean up these bills so that they’re more acceptable.

The first attack took place immediately. After realizing that the fight was going to be tougher than they originally expected, the government went and shut down the popular file-sharing website without any preliminary trial. Then they seized an additional 18 domain names and made multiple arrests to employees of the company.

Revenge didn’t take long as soon the online hacktivism group, Anonymous, went on a spree of attacks to web sites associated with the war against piracy. They were successful in temporarily shutting down or slowing these sites:


In what could be the greatest war cry ever, Anonymous proclaimed, "We Anonymous are launching our largest attack ever on government and music industry sites. Lulz."

I can only see this battlefield worsening. With lines being drawn and sides being chosen, there is no clear answer to this dilemma. Corporations and politicians who are pro-censorship must deal with the massive amount of customer outcry and eventual withdrawal that could fall into their lap if they fight for this cause. Which explains why so much of this SOPA/PIPA support has accumulated behind closed doors.

It'll be interesting to see where this goes and who will stand up/sit down. It may even determine the future president of the United States due to how passionate most citizens are about this issue.

Shiny Toy Guns
"Major Tom"
4, 3, 2, 1
Earth below us
drifting, falling.
Floating weightless
calling, calling home

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Good Movies on Netflix

How many of you can remember wandering around the catacombs of your local Blockbuster in search of that perfect movie rental? You arrived with the intention of fulfilling your otherwise boring night but ended up with another VHS box with Julia Roberts on the cover.

Well, our daily lives have gone through plenty of changes since those video dark ages, but it seems as if our troubles have remained the same. As now we aimlessly browse the massive Netflix library in search of a streaming surprise. A library that seems overly-crowded with unwanted footage, but in actuality has plenty of hidden gems that are sitting around waiting to be discovered by nightly chair-ridden rascals like yourself.

That’s where I come in. Time for…


Note to self: shorten the title next time you do this segment. Anyways, here’s 3 Eddie-approved movies for you to chose from. So you can watch something immediately without having to waste any additional time clawing through Suggestions.

SLC Punk
One of my personal favorites despite it being an acquired taste. It’s about an intelligent young punk rocker who's trying to live life with his anarchist beliefs while residing in the Salt Lake City, which is littered with other conflicting social groups. The storyline is fun but also incredibly moving so it has something for everyone. Oh, and a young Jason Segel's in it

IP Man
What's this movie you ask? Oh nothing much, just the best kung-fu film EVER. It centers around the life of one of Bruce Lee's masters, Ip Man, who struggles to support his family during World War 2 while the Japanese are breathing down his people's neck. Great storyline, great acting, and awesome fight scenes. And the best part: The sequel is also on Netflix AND is just as delicious. Get at it.

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind
I can't believe how many people haven't seen this movie. It follows an awkward guy who erases his own memory of a sporadic ex-girlfriend after she does the same to him. In my opinion, it's Jim Carrey's only non-over-the-top-comedic-role that matters. And Charlie Kaufman's (Being John Malkovich, Adaptation) unique, awkward writing style is the icing on the cake.

So there you go. Looks like you have some work to do. Put your schoolwork aside and let your boss know you're coming in late. Because there's movies to be watched. Hell, I'll even get you started with a clip from Ip Man:

The greatest fight scene ever

Fujia & Miyagi
Got to get a new pair of shoes
to kick it with her, not kick it with you

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Hey look, Van Halen's back... that's kinda nice

I’m going to start the New Year off by talking about the old. And by old, I mean David Lee Roth and Van Halen.

You think David Lee Roth reuniting with Van Halen to produce their first album together in 27 years would feature an epic first single, but instead we get a song about tramp stamps called "Tattoo". I understand the whole “First we must release something catchy to get the audience’s attention” mindset, but c’mon, give yourselves a little more credit. Because no one wants to see old dudes talking about sexy housewives with tattoos. Let's save that kind of stuff for aging R&B artists like Usher.

Now let’s jump to the production aspects of this video. Who produced this thing? Getting your 20-year-old son to play bass in your legendary, Rock Hall of Fame band is one thing, but it looks like Eddie Van Halen even convinced grandma Halen and the rest of the family to videotape the music video. There are shots unintentionally out of focus, awkward camera angles, and an obvious lack of shutter speed knowledge with the strobe light sequences. And I wouldn’t be surprised if the reason the video is in black and white is because the individuals on camera forgot to white balance their equipment.

Let’s be honest, most of the budget for this was most likely spent on the balloons and confetti… which was put into reverse along with ½ the other shots just because they thought it looked cool… alright it does kinda look cool, BUT STILL.

And speaking of Van Halen family members, someone needs to tell Eddie’s son, Wolfgang, to actually look the part. He sticks out like a sore thumb. At least put on a pair of big sunglasses or grow some manly facial hair to hide your “I definitely didn’t work hard to get here” look.
...Or both?
Otherwise, I’m still curious to see what new stuff they’ve come up with, but I wouldn’t be able to take a whole album of this. Van Halen's never been one of my favorite bands but I’ve always loved their older stuff like “Runnin’ with the Devil” and their rendition of The Kinks’ “You Really Got Me”. Not so much the jumping around in spandex MTV days. And please give me another guitar-melting “Eruption”-esque song just so I can shut up… please?

Lyrics Born
Bad Dreams
Got burnt by women, poor dirts in Venice
Landlords and tenants, got served by creditors
We have a deep passion
We can't keep dwelling on problems