26 January, 2008


In the year 2015 the New York Times has gone offline.
The Fourth Estate's fortunes have waned.
What happened to the news?
And what is EPIC?

WSC Show #78 - Hanging Out With Asterios Kokkinos

In this recording, striker Asterios Kokkinos gives me a ride to my car after a day of picketing on Martin Luther King Day in front of NBC Studios but we end up taking a tour of cool things to see and do in Burbank. Recorded Monday, 21 January 2008.

Producer/Host: Tanja Barnes
Music: The Asterios Kokkinos Strike Band

Featured in this episode:

The House of Secrets
1930 W. Olive Avenue
Burbank, California 91506

Hyaena Gallery
1928 W. Olive Ave.
Burbank, CA 91506

25 January, 2008

AT&T Proposes to filter the Internet.

There's a great article in today's NewTeeVee blog about AT&T, net neutrality and ... censorship (gasp!). The issue is this bit shown in the video above.

Here's a snippet from the blog post:
"Anyone who’s ever appeared on the news or a talk show can tell you that you can’t necessarily trust you will be treated fairly in editing — especially if you ramble, contradict the host or call a show’s sponsor or advertisers into controversy. Until recently, there was no way to clarify your story, unless you were lucky enough to be a television personality yourself.'
BoingBoing Gadget’s Joel Johnson knew this already.

So when he went into an interview on The Hugh Thompson Show, which airs on AT&T’s Tech Channel, an online video mini-net focused on technology, he brought along Richard Blakeley (NewTeeVee profile), posted it to YouTube and embedded the video on his blog.

Which illustrates that in a world where one-to-many broadcasting is no longer the only option, the balance of power between interviewer and interviewee has shifted.

Thompson’s show with Johnson has yet to air, and may never — after all, Johnson calls into question AT&T’s publicly stated intent to filter Internet access across its portion of the network and its stance against network neutrality, and Thompson’s show is wholly funded and distributed by AT&T."
Well...all I can say if that if you're a guest on my podcast you can pretty much count on the fact that I don't edit out anything you said (or what I said for that matter). But then again, I'm independent with no sponsors.

Anyway, now that you know, here's a snippet from Tim Wu of Slashdot in a blog post entitled "Has AT&T Lost Its Mind?". I recommend clicking to read the entire post here, just to get caught up to speed.
"Chances are that as you read this article, it is passing over part of AT&T's network. That matters, because last week AT&T announced that it is seriously considering plans to examine all the traffic it carries for potential violations of U.S. intellectual property laws. The prospect of AT&T, already accused of spying on our telephone calls, now scanning every e-mail and download for outlawed content is way too totalitarian for my tastes. But the bizarre twist is that the proposal is such a bad idea that it would be not just a disservice to the public but probably a disaster for AT&T itself. If I were a shareholder, I'd want to know one thing: Has AT&T, after 122 years in business, simply lost its mind?"

WSC Show #77 - Interviews with Vicangelo Bulluck and Regina Taylor

In today’s episode I head out to the picket line at Paramount Studios to speak with Vic Bulluck, the Executive Director of the Hollywood Bureau of the NAACP. I also speak with Regina Taylor from The Unit. Recorded Tuesday, 21 January 2008.

Producer/Host: Tanja Barnes
"Ay Mambo" by Falik
available on

24 January, 2008

Bono Responds To The Davos Question

As I previously blogged, the Davos Conversation on YouTube provides a place where anyone can create a YouTube video and answer the question “What one thing do you think that countries, companies or individuals must do to make the world a better place in 2008?” and upload it to the site.

Bono has answered the question and it's posted above. According to TechCrunch he had just left a breakfast talk with Al Gore on the subject of climate change.

WSC Show #76 - Interview with Jeff Wolfman

In this episode, I talk writer/director Jeff Wolfman and with us is SAG member Colleen McGrann. Recorded Monday, 20 January 2008.

Producer/Host: Tanja Barnes

"Television Raised Me" by Agent Xenon
and sung by Nikki G of Plasticade
available on AgentXenon.com

"Ay Mambo" by
available on

As mentioned in this episode: Time Warner Cable to trial hard bandwidth caps

23 January, 2008

RSS in Plain English

In my recent interview with Alan Kirschenbaum, I asked him to define what a breakthrough show on the Internet would look like.

His response is "It's written, scripted programming...where the content is so compelling that next week a thousand people come, and the next week two thousand people come and reaches a critical mass."

I then asked him if he watched "Ask A Ninja" as an example of an Internet breakthrough programming and though he found it entertaining and clever, he said "When I remember to watch it, I watch it. That's not exactly the same and unless you're arguing with me that are like when Seinfeld was on and people stayed home on Thursday nights because they wanted to see Seinfeld because they wanted on Friday morning to be able to have the conversation with the other people they worked with to say "'Did you see what happened?'" and you don't want to say "'No don't talk about that because I didn't see it yet.'" You want to be part of the conversation so you watched it the first chance that it was on."

I respectfully think the issue with Alan's Internet viewing habits is that he's failing to use the technology to his advantage.

"When I remember to watch" he said.

I still contend that "Ask A Ninja" is a perfect example of an Internet breakthrough new media product. The difference between Ninja and Seinfeld (format notwithstanding) is that viewers subscribe to the show (rather than tuning in or programming their VCRs or Tivos) by making use of RSS readers.

I believe in the brave new world of new media and the consumption of new media products, audiences will rush to be the first to click on a show and will constantly refresh their RSS readers to be the first (and perhaps the hippest and coolest) to catch programming as soon as it goes live on the Web.

My two cents. YMMV.

(Oh, and BTW...I got your RSS feed for Ninja right here.)

WSC Show #75 - Conversation with Damon D'Amato

In today’s episode I have a conversation in front of NBC Studios with Damon D'Amato who works below the line as a teleprompter operator. Recorded Monday, 20 January 2008.

Producer/Host: Tanja Barnes
Music: "Ay Mambo" by Falik
available on

Tanja Barnes, originally uploaded by NoHoDamon.

It's official: Damon D'Amato is the official staff photographer for the Strike Chronicles. Thanks, Damon!

WSC Show #74 - Interviews with Alan Kirschenbaum and Elizabeth Reynolds

In today’s episode I talk with writer Alan Kirschenbaum followed by SAG member Elizabeth Reynolds at the picket line in front of NBC studios. Recorded Monday, 20 January 2008.

Producer/Host: Tanja Barnes
Music: "Ay Mambo" by Falik
available on

22 January, 2008

Open TV Network

From Burbank, California, the Open Television Network launches this week. This startup offers a tool called klickTab that allows content owners to charge micropayments for downloads. From their website:

The Open Television Network is open to any content owner who wants to sell content to viewers and for any viewer who wants to choose their own programming. It is built on technology we developed and called klickTab. klickTab is the technology that makes the Open Television Network possible: the Open Television Network is the marketplace that makes it fair.

The Future of Entertainment: Music and Media

This program is from the Future Talks series for The Conversations Network.

WSC Show #73 - Interviews with Phyllis Strong and John Zinman

In today’s episode we speak with writers Phyllis Strong and John Zinman as we wrap up a series of recordings made last week at the picket line at Fox Studios. It’s worth noting that these interviews were conducted prior to announcement of the DGA’s tentative agreement with the AMPTP. Recorded Wednesday, 16 January 2008.

Hosts: Tanja Barnes, Bill Funt
Music: "Ay Mambo" by Falik
available on

Live Journal's WGA_Supporters Call To Action: Call the AMPTP

From the LiveJournal WGA_supporters USA Network Law & Order Criminal Intent Forum as posted by Susan Olson:

There's a new action item for today: Call the AMPTP.

The DGA (might) have reached a deal with the AMPTP (the DGA members vote on it on January 26th, 2008), and the WGA and the AMPTP have started informal conversations again.

This is a good start.

However, until the AMPTP and WGA start *officially* talking and negotiating, Fans For the WGA (FFWGA) is asking its members to call the AMPTP office in Encino, California between the hours of 9am to 5pm California time (noon and 8pm Eastern time) directly. Remind the AMPTP that it walked out of the negotiations 45 days ago and that the WGA has remained willing and waiting to bargain for this entire time period.

Now, we viewers and fans want both sides to return to the table without any funny business. We want them to settle the dispute, before it's too late for pilot season, and before the Oscars. The first number:

1-818-382-1706 [The Ambiguous Answering Message]

It will go directly to an answering message, so you don't have to worry about "talking" to someone or getting nervous. When you call please state:
  1. Which show(s) you regularly watch
  2. Your city and state
  3. Your closest NBC affiliate (if you watch on DISH TV or DirectTV, you can say so)
  4. Your gender
  5. Whether you are currently working
  6. Your age range(s) (i.e. under 18, 18-49, 25-44, 50+),
  7. If you are comfortable saying so, your approximate household income per year (example HHI $75,000+ per year...that is the most desired audience for advertisers so if your family/household earns that much money please say so...if not, that's okay too)
  8. You want the AMPTP to start negotiating with the WGA immediately.
  9. You want the AMPTP to bargain in "good faith".

As an example I'll give you my talking points:

I regularly watch and enjoy 'Law & Order: Criminal Intent' and 'Burn Notice' on USA Network, (an NBC company) and 'Mad Men' on AMC. I live in the Shenandoah Valley region of Virginia, and because I subscribe to DISH TV, my closest NBC affiliates are in Harrisonburg, VA, Hagerstown, MD and Washington DC. I am a working female in the 18-49 and 25-44 demographics and my household income is $75,000+ per year. I would like the AMPTP to start negotiating with the WGA immediately and to bargain in good faith so that production on my favorite shows can resume as soon as possible. Thank you.

Remember to be polite, firm, and brief.

Thanks in advance for anyone who can help make a phone call!

(original post here)

S.E. (Susan) Olson
Moderator & Law & Order: Criminal Intent Fan Liason

21 January, 2008

Martin Luther King III on Blogging, the Media and the Jena 6 Protests

Martin Luther King III talks about the role that African American bloggers and media outlets, particularly urban radio stations, played in raising the profile of the Jena 6 defendants, leading to the massive protests that took place last September in Jena, LA.

This item is part of the collection: blip.tv

WSC Show #72 - Interview with Monique N. Matthews

Here we speak to screen writer Monique Matthews at the picket line in front of Fox Studios. Recorded Wednesday, 16 January 2008.

Hosts: Tanja Barnes, Bill Funt
Music: "Breakdown FM: Martin Luther King vs. the Radio" mashup by DaveyD (featured) and "Cure vs. Martin Luther King" mashup by DJ Lord Grocon (intro and outro)

This episode is dedicated
to the memory of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

20 January, 2008

WSC Show #71 - Interview with Andrew Goldberg

In this episode, we speak with strike captain Andrew Goldberg at the picket line in front of Fox Studios. Recorded Wednesday, 16 January 2008.

Hosts: Tanja Barnes, Bill Funt
Music: "Ay Mambo" by Falik
available on

Fans4Writers.com Picketing Event - MLK Day

On Martin Luther King, Jr. Day (Monday, January 21), fans are invited to join the picketing writers at NBC Burbank. All fans in the Los Angeles area (and beyond) are urged to join in on the picket.

Picketing Shifts: 2:30pm-5:30pm
3000 W Alameda Ave, Burbank, CA

Meeting Point: Check-in table is located on Bob Hope Dr. (Johnny Carson park)

Parking Option: Street parking on Bob Hope and Riverside

More information on the picket location and schedule can be found on the
WGA website as well as at the Fans4Writers website.

Yours in solidarity,
Jen Cummings
Community Outreach

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