Music New York City

David Van Tieghem, These Things Happen

I was really happy to see that David Van Tieghem‘s 1984 album, These Things Happen was released on Bandcamp by Van Tieghem himself. This was released on vinyl and cassette back in the day and while I have had a bad digital copy, I was more than happy to pay David for a lossless file. Both These Things Happen and Van Tieghem’s 1987 release, Saftey in Numbers, are seminal albums for me. I listened to them so many times as a child and while the nostalgia is a factor, Van Tieghem’s ideas and production are so great, the albums hold up decades later. Highly recommended.

Music back after many years

One of my favorite DJs, is back after many years with a new deep house mix, Socially Distant. Great to have fleep back!

Music News

thank you Bill Withers

If you are looking for the best hour of curated Bill Withers, I suggest you go check out Oliver Wang’s 2015 tribute to Withers on
Rest in power.

News Uncategorized

HBO’s Chernobyl vs. future Fukushima media event

After watching HBO’s phenomenal Chernobyl TV mini series, my concern is that the bar has been raised very high for any potential Fukushima disaster media portrayal. Whether any future Fukushima media portrayal will be a documentary or a historical drama like the HBO Chernobyl mini series, it will be demanding to make anything of the quality of the Craig Mazin and Johan Renck series.

Clearly the Fukushima event still is ongoing wrt the cleanup (and will be for hundreds if not thousands of years) but there should be some sort of detailed overview of the event for a global audience. There are lessons to be learned that have yet to be shared broadly and myths to be busted, etc.

I don’t know who/how a Fukushima media project could be done effectively. Perhaps a Netflix-funded effort with a Japanese cast but perhaps a non-Japanese director? HBO’s Chernobyl did have many award-winning non-Russian/non-Ukranian actors, and I think any Fukushima media project would have to carefully balance having Japanese actors for authenticity but also some non-Japanese perspective (in direction or other areas) in order to broaden the story for a global audience. When such a project could be funded or shot, I don’t know. I suspect it is still too close to the date of the accident/event that it’s still too soon.

China mobile

Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel learned the wrong lessons from China

The Information has a story on Snapchat’s recent stumbles around it’s new app, which users have largely hated.  Because that story is paywalled, I’ll link to a Gizmodo article that has some of the coverage without a paywall. The interesting part for me is learning that CEO Evan Spiegel was visiting China (which is blocking Snapchat AFAIK) and started the redesign based on information he learned from his China visit.

Inspired by apps he’d seen in that country [China], Mr. Spiegel wanted to create a new version separating users’ friends’ content from the professional media. Each category would be sorted by an algorithm rather than Snapchat’s existing chronological feed.

Spiegel, who is only 27, and has had apparently limited experience in China, made the critical error of taking a trend from one market [China] and applying it to another market [Snapchat’s home market] without considering all of the cultural and market differences between the two. I think it is a good lesson to illuminate the differences between China and non-China markets. What works in China often does not directly work in non-China markets, and the opposite is often also true, either due to Chinese government censorship or market differences. That Spiegel is the CEO enabled him to push through this redesign without understanding this shows his naivete wrt both China and how international markets are different. Visiting China a few times a year and then basing drastic changes on your successful app from that limited understanding- just about anyone who had more than cursory experience in China could have seen this disaster coming. It is an expensive lesson for Spiegel and the Snapchat team and a good lesson for those of us who care to learn.