Without the internet, YouTube and cheap camcorders we wouldn't have gems like this.

hat tip boing boing

Just a few of the interesting creations people have made using Lego.


see 21 Amazing Movie Posters Recreated with Lego


see Nathan Sawaya - Brooklyn Bridge

Two weeks ago I posted FITM - Breakfast Club Mashup, a post about a couple fan created videos for the song Lisztomania by the French band Phoenix (wikipedia). I had a chance to watch the official video recently. The video is fine as far as music videos go. However, I was struck by how much more I enjoyed the fan created videos. With video technology getting cheaper and more widely used, encouraging fan videos is a great way to interact and connect with fans as well as generate cheap and effective promotional material.

see also
FITM - No Budget, No Plan, No Rehearsal, No Problem

I'm fascinated by ingenious ideas and this design for a folding UK plug is no exception. I haven't been able to find out any information as to who the designer is. However, it appears that the design is a submission for the James Dyson Awards (UK Folding Plug System).

hat tip boing boing gadgets

The Gregory Brothers have created a number of Auto-Tune News videos by editing news clips, adding some music and processing voices with Auto-Tune. Here is their latest video.

Their videos can be found on YouTube - Auto-Tune News.

see also
Time - Auto-Tune the News
FITM - Slap Chop Remix

hat tip Rachel Maddow Show

Although the RIAA, record companies and their apologists complain about the decline in the music industry and many are buying into that notion. This is not true. What is true is that the little plastic disc industry is declining significantly. The rest of the music industry is doing fine (concerts, instrument sales, etc.). In fact, more people are creating more music than ever before.

Despite the significant decline in CD sales, a number of artists are putting out some high-priced CD packages. They realize that in a world of free, perfect copies, selling music only isn't really a great business to be in. So these artists are providing some extra value, they are giving fans a reason to buy their music.

Mike Masnick (wikipedia) has a simple formula for artists to make money in the music industry. CwF + RtB = $$$. Connect with Fans plus Reason to Buy = Profits. In this recent presentation, Masnick discusses this approach to the music industry.

Here are some examples of CD packages that have been recently released. Many of these artists are working with TopSpin, a company that helps artists better connect with fans.

Beck - One Foot In The Grave

Lenny Kravitz - Let Love Rule

Paul McCartney - Fireman

Eminem - Relapse

Nine Inch Nails - Ghosts I - IV

David Byrne and Brian Eno - Everything That Happens Will Happen Today

Even capitalist, copyright over-protectionist, paranoid U2 is not merely pushing for laws to protect old business models, they are also realizing they need to give fans a reason to buy.

Perpetuum Jazzile (wikipedia) is a choir from Slovenia that performs pop and jazz music. Here is their fantastic version of Toto's (wikipedia) Africa.

Here they are performing a medley of BeeGees' (wikipedia) songs.

Jimmie Inch has this great version of Africa.

hat tip Coverville.com

With current events in Iran demonstrating the impact of social media, it is worthwhile taking a look at what Clay Shirky (wikipedia) has to say about the changes internet social media is bringing. Clay gave this speech in May 2009.

Clay discusses events in Iran in this Q & A

I previously discussed Clay Shirky's thinking in Now We Can Do Big Things For Love.

People wanting to better understand the social and economic impact of internet technology would do well to seek out Shirky's writing and presentations.

hat tip @GuyKawasaki