SXSW, Day Two Sunday

Part two in a continuing series. I was up late watching Ze Frank and his hilarious deconstruction of Airline Safety Seat Back Instructions (“So what does this mean? No interracial dating?“) and other general silliness. Compounded by the fact that 2am instantly became 3am I passed on the 10 am sessions and opted for a run by the river where I caught the Heart of Texas Regatta.

Lonelygirl15 Case Study

As they got into developing the concept, they realized that what they were doing was not unlike what Orsen Wells did with his War of the Worlds broadcast at the dawn of the radio age. The general public is not literate in internet video and how truth can be manipulated.

Even after it was discovered that Lonelygirl15 was a fictional character, people still tune into the site which has become an, “internet soap opera” with a following that is comprised of 70-80% female, most in their 20’s.

On the site, fans are encouraged to submit their own videos to add to the plotline. Fans take minor characters and expand them with their own backstory which the producers then roll into future episodes.

How do they make money? Product placement and videos hosted on Revver. They are also investigating more integrated promotions such as inviting viewers to go to fedex.com and type in a tracking number to follow a package to delivery which will coincide with an event.

Keynote Conversation: Limor Fried / Phil Torrone

Photos and descriptions of various projects including:

Bacon-cooking Alarm Clock

Gummy Bear Chandelier

A 225 HP Monowheel

RFID-activated Flame-throwing trampoline

The OpenMoko – an open source cellphone

Plants that call you when you need to water them

Building an Online Fan Base

Lance Weiler walked us through the site for his movie, Head Trauma. A series of pages tell the story of the movie and at one point you are prompted to SMS a message to a number. Once you do, the site calls your cellphone and continues the narration of the site over your phone, augmenting the spooky music on the site. At one point, the voice on the phone asks you your “darkest secret” recording what you say into the receiver and then plays it back to you OVER YOUR COMPUTER SPEAKERS. It continues to loop what you said over and over again until, sufficiently chilled, you leave the site. The site monitors the clicks and knows when you leave the site so it then CALLS YOU BACK!

At this point the entire room let out an astonished gasp of horror.

Lance has a number of SEO tricks up his sleeve as well which he has documented for other filmmakers at his site, workbookproject.com.

People-Powered Projects

Jamglue.com – totally cool flash-based remixing console with social “favoriting” features thrown in to surface the best mixes.

Despite the fact that some of the most creative material is coming out of community-based sites such as flickr and JPG Magazine, getting “published” by a big-name publisher is still a mark of validation.

 

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