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Ross Gibson’s Notes on The Matrix

Categories: Conversation, General, The Matrix
Date: 9 July 2008

The Matrix / Quadrants

NOTE how Ben asks what are the uses of TV and who are the various sectors for whom it is useful.

Ben’s axes = access (infrastructure) & involvement (peoples’ participation)

Using ALJ’s axes … … RG feels comfortable because RG can tell two stories — 1. USA & UK hang on to IP ownership even though India and Jamaica are booming in innovation 2. USA gets so nervous about its ossification, that it suddenly declares all IP is untrammelled and free.

Next task: take the three matrices and push the 5 drivers on to them. (NB add a 6th drivers = environmental sustainability) NOTE that we are doing this to test the validity and robustness of the the three proposed matrices. Eg, do the matrices stand up when Raphael says, ‘Where’s money in this?’ and when RG says ‘where’s creative desire as maximum value in all this?’ Ie … the two extremes of value.

A. Most Important & Most Certain

(i) There is no mass audience that looks like the nation anymore, except for ‘blood-voodoo’ live events like State of Origin, Olympics and Indigenous Apology.

(ii) There is an enormous amount of back-catalogue of a-v material to be trawled through for minimal expense. Much of it will be pirated and accessed and made available by people who have no belief in intellectual property.

(iii) Iterative, versioning, ‘re-use’, mash-up cultures are the most innovative, inventive and cost-effective cultures on the planet (Jamaica, Japan, China.) Such cultures do not function on one-way broadcast. They require rapid churn and immediate feedback from consumers. (THIS CONNECTS TO ‘SWARM BEHAVIOUR’, in category B, below. Note how intellectual property is ineffectual in relation to swarm behaviour.)

(iv) At a vernacular, everyday level, intellectual property is over as a governing code.

(v) People are craving personalised control over the ‘space’ that they make for themselves with a-v content. People want to manage for themselves a balance between personal space and communal affiliation.

(vi) the future majority of people have been trained heuristically, forensically, to distrust a single authority and to triangulate all information before making a decision.

(vii) the music industry is five years further into the ‘catastrophe’ than is the a-v industry.

(viii) Parliamentary Australia no longer looks the least bit like actual Australia. TV Australia and Parliamentary Australia need each other and try to portray each other as relevant to the lives of Actual Australia. In the past ten years they have specatularly failed to make this compact convincing to Actual Australia. Actual Australia has turned away from TV Australia.

B. Most Important and Most Uncertain

(i) audiences for live or very recent events and contemporary content will behave like improvising swarms rather than as a singular mass entity.

(ii) budget scales for most a-v content will plummet, comparable to what is happening in the music industry. People should not expect to make a strong income exclusively from being a-v content providers.

(iii) a-v material is the basis for people forming communities of affiliation, communities of conviviality, responsiveness and exchange. (Relational Aesthetics as the KEY ENTHUSIASM of young art students. Abhorrence of cruelty or exploitation. A desire for sustained connectedness.)

(iv) Cultures that declare that intellectual property protection is over, are the most productive and competitive cultures. (Information wants to be free.)

(v) The future generations have different neuology — they have multiple levels of cognition operating simultaneously. They are like designers, therefore, and designers create and innovate iteratively and ‘larcenously’. The Jamaican chant: ‘Four big sounds inna one big yard’.

(vi) Money is not the ‘value’ that drives a huge number of people to work in a-v content. The obsession with monetary rewards ignores a huge aspect of what drives most of the industry.

(vii) Online, ‘illegal’ torrenting is the fastest-growing media-acquisiton practice in Australia. The torrent community is a ‘coalition of bandits’, which is what post-1788 Australia has always been. It’s a good cultural match.

C. Least Important and Least Certain

Everything will become a screen. A-v experiences will not be dedicated to a box in a single domestic room.

Entertainment is not what most people are wanting from a screen — they are wanting DISTRACTION and INTRIGUE and DISCOVERY and a FEELING OF CONNECTEDNESS.

D. Least Important and Least Uncertain

(i) There will always be some lean-back, high-cost content for specialised audiences that that are prepared to pay for its exclusivity.

(ii) any one person is several different types of viewer during any one day

(iii) generations last 3 years now, with regard to defining themselves according to a-v content. (Everyone inhabits multiple niches.)

(iv) Traditional film and TV funding is irrelevant to the activities of most innovative and active and relevant a-v content-initiators

(v) Project-by-project funding is over.

(vi) ‘Australian Content’ regulations are irrelevant and not worth enforcing. ‘Australian Creativity and Ingenuity’, on the other hand, will always be rewarded.