Urbanized (2011)

Urbanized is a feature-length documentary about the design of cities, which looks at the issues and strategies behind urban design and features some of the world’s foremost architects, planners, policymakers, builders, and thinkers. Over half the world’s population now lives in an urban area, and 75% will call a city home by 2050. But while some cities are experiencing explosive growth, others are shrinking. The challenges of balancing housing, mobility, public space, civic engagement, economic development, and environmental policy are fast becoming universal concerns. Yet much of the dialogue on these issues is disconnected from the public domain.

Who is allowed to shape our cities, and how do they do it? Unlike many other fields of design, cities aren’t created by any one specialist or expert. There are many contributors to urban change, including ordinary citizens who can have a great impact improving the cities in which they live. By exploring a diverse range of urban design projects around the world, Urbanized frames a global discussion on the future of cities.

Vir: http://urbanizedfilm.com

Advertisements

Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields (2010 – 2012)

A special investigation by Channel 4 featuring devastating new evidence of alleged war crimes in Sri Lanka is screened at the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, as pressure mounts for action.

The documentary is an hour-long investigation into the final weeks of the bloody Sri Lankan civil war and features damning new evidence of war crimes and crimes against humanity.

Titled Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields, Jon Snow presents the investigation which was shown to the United Nations Human Rights Council on Friday.

Disturbing footage in the film includes the apparent extra-judicial massacre of prisoners by government forces, the aftermath of targeted shelling of civilian hospitals and the bodies of female Tamil fighters who appear to have been sexually assaulted. Also examined in the film are atrocities carried out by the Tamil Tigers.

Sri Lanka’s Killing Fields: War Crimes Unpunished (2012)

In 2011 Channel 4 exposed damning evidence of atrocities committed in the war in Sri Lanka. Jon Snow presents this powerful follow-up film, revealing new video evidence as well as contemporaneous documents, eye-witness accounts, photographic stills and videos relating to how exactly events unfolded during the final days of the civil war.

The film forensically examines four specific cases and investigates who was responsible.

The four cases include: the deliberate heavy shelling of civilians and a hospital in the ‘No Fire Zone’; the strategic denial of food and medicine to hundreds and thousands of trapped civilians – defying the legal obligation to allow humanitarian aid into a war zone; the killing of civilians during the ‘rescue mission’; and the systematic execution of naked and bound LTTE prisoners – featuring new chilling video footage of a 12-year-old boy who has been brutally executed.

This painstaking investigation traces ultimate responsibility up to the highest echelons of the chain of command, asking questions of both President Rajapaska and his brother, the Defence Secretary.

Napotila:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Lanka%27s_Killing_Fields

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sri_Lanka%27s_Killing_Fields:_War_Crimes_Unpunished

The Persuaders (2004)

Americans are swimming in a sea of messages.

Each year, legions of ad people, copywriters, market researchers, pollsters, consultants, and even linguists—most of whom work for one of six giant companies—spend billions of dollars and millions of man-hours trying to determine how to persuade consumers what to buy, whom to trust, and what to think. Increasingly, these techniques are migrating to the high-stakes arena of politics, shaping policy and influencing how Americans choose their leaders.

In “The Persuaders,” FRONTLINE explores how the cultures of marketing and advertising have come to influence not only what Americans buy, but also how they view themselves and the world around them. The 90-minute documentary draws on a range of experts and observers of the advertising/marketing world, to examine how, in the words of one on-camera commentator, “the principal of democracy yields to the practice of demography,” as highly customized messages are delivered to a smaller segment of the market.

Take the 2004 presidential sweepstakes for example. Both the Republicans and the Democrats were prepared to go to extraordinary lengths to custom craft their messages. “What politicians do is tailor their message to each demographic group,” says Peter Swire, professor of law at Ohio State University and an expert on Internet policy. “That means…Americans will live in different virtual universes. What’s wrong with living in different universes? You never confront the other side. You don’t have to deal with the uncomfortable facts that go against your worldview….It hardens the partisanship that’s been such a feature of recent American politics.”

FRONTLINE analyzes the 2004 campaign where, for the first time, the latest techniques in narrowcasting were put into effect. The antithesis of traditional broadcasting, narrowcasting involves crafting and delivering tailored messages to individual voters based on their demographic profiles.

Political marketers are just now discovering new ways to use the techniques that have long been employed by the private sector. FRONTLINE visits Acxiom, the largest data mining company in the world, where vast farms of computers hold detailed information about nearly every adult in America. Data mining, a practice that predicts likely behavior based on factors such as age, income, and shopping habits, has been the gold standard of commercial advertisers. Acxiom promises its clients a better way to target their messages to individual consumers.

“There is an age-old anxiety among advertisers that they are wasting their money, that they cannot know whom they are reaching and with what impact,” says Rushkoff, who collaborated with Dretzin and Goodman on FRONTLINE’s “The Merchants of Cool,” which examined the process by which corporate conglomerates have co-opted teen culture in order to capture the multibillion-dollar adolescent market.

But Rushkoff predicts, “Anxiety is giving way to a confidence that they will soon have access to the core emotional needs of nearly every American shopper and voter.”

There is, however, a paradox. While the techniques of the persuaders have become more sophisticated, consumers have never been more resistant to marketing messages. Yet today, advertisements fill up nearly every available inch of the landscape.

“You cannot walk down the street without being bombarded,” advertising writer Bob Garfield says. “You go to fill your gas tank and you look at the pump and you’re seeing news headlines in advertising. You go into the bathroom and you look in the urinal and you’re staring at an ad. You look up at the sky and there’s skywriting.”

This clutter creates a dilemma for advertisers, Garfield observes. “The advertisers know they need to have more and more advertising to get an ever narrower slice of your attention,” he says. “And that means we are going to be ever more inundated. And then of course ever more resistant, requiring ever more advertising, making us ever more resistant and so on.”

But clever marketers have found ways of overcoming the clutter conundrum. As television viewers have found ways of avoiding ads by using personal video recorders like Tivo, advertisers have responded by becoming a part of the program through sophisticated product placement. FRONTLINE follows this new trend in advertising known as “branded entertainment.” Rather than marketing products around a TV show or other entertainment vehicle, industry insiders predict the future will bring a seamless blend of marketing and entertainment. Producers are already moving in that direction. Take for example a recent Sex and the City story line in which a character becomes a poster-boy for Absolut Vodka. The idea was actually proposed to HBO by Absolut’s public relations agency.

Some industry leaders claim that such tactics have evolved in response to consumer preference. But others worry that as advertising becomes more deeply integrated into television, movies, and music, those cultural forms will become ever more homogenous. “The worry is not so much that the actual ads themselves will become ubiquitous,” says media critic Mark Crispin Miller. “Rather, it’s that advertising desires for itself a background that will not contradict it….The aim here is not so much to find a show that people like and then get your ads on it. The aim here is for the advertisers to create a show that is itself an extended ad.”

As consumers grow more cynical toward marketing claims, the persuasion industries are developing and refining techniques to reinforce an emotional attachment between Americans and the brands they buy.

“What consumers want now is an emotional connection—they want to be able to connect with what’s behind the brand, what’s behind the promise,” says Kevin Roberts, CEO of Saatchi and Saatchi Advertising. “The brands that can move to that emotional level, that can create loyalty beyond reason, are going to be the brands where premium profits lie.”

Douglas Atkin, a partner at advertising agency Merkley + Partners, goes even further, comparing the brand loyalty that companies are trying to create to the passionate zeal once enjoyed only by cultists and religious fanatics.

“I’ve interviewed people who are brand loyalists of Saturn Car Company,” Atkin says, “and they will use the same vocabulary as someone who is a cult member of Hare Krishna. They will say that other car users need to be `saved,’ or that they are part of the `Saturn family’ with no hint of irony. [They] absolutely and completely believe it.”

Although some brands have been more successful than others in making the magic connection to consumers, the techniques the marketers are developing are startling and include the hiring of anthropologists, ethnographers, linguists, and brain researchers to plumb our unconscious desires and urges so as to better influence our decision making.

But there is reason to wonder if these emotional connections are real. Says author Naomi Klein, “When you listen to brand managers talk, you can get quite carried away in this idea that they actually are fulfilling these needs that we have for community and narrative and transcendence. But in the end it is…a laptop and a pair of running shoes. And they might be great, but they’re not actually going to fulfill those needs.”

Correspondent Rushkoff observes: “We Americans value our freedom of choice—choice in the marketplace of goods, and choice in what has become a marketplace of ideas. When the same persuasion industry is engaged to influence these very different kinds of decision-making, it’s easy for our roles as consumers and our roles as citizens to get blurred. By revealing some of the most effective practices of the persuasion business, we may better understand our choices and perhaps make wiser ones.”

Vir: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/shows/persuaders

Povezava: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/video/flv/generic.html?s=frol02p74&continuous=1

Peace, Propaganda & the Promised Land (2004)

Peace, Propaganda & the Promised Land U.S. Media & the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict How Israel manipulates and distorts American public perceptions Through the voices of scholars, media critics, peace activists, religious figures, and Middle East experts, Peace, Propaganda & the Promised Land carefully analyzes and explains how–through the use of language, framing and context–the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and Gaza remains hidden in the news media, and Israeli colonization of the occupied terrorities appears to be a defensive move rather than an offensive one. keywords: Palestine Israel Zionist Jew Islam Jewish Idi Amin Noam Chomsky Media Bias Big Brother Rupert Murdoch FOX News Sky News George Orwell Police State Military Occupation Iran Lebanon Terrorstorm Alex Jones manipulation media movements revolution alternative media.

Vir: http://www.mediaed.org

Euro 2012 – Stadiums of Hate (2012)

With just days to go before the kick-off of the Euro 2012 championships, Panorama reveals shocking new evidence of racist violence and anti-semitism at the heart of Polish and Ukrainian football and asks whether tournament organiser UEFA should have chosen both nations to host the prestigious event.

Reporter Chris Rogers witnesses a group of Asian fans being attacked on the terraces of a Ukrainian premier league match and hears anti-Semitic chanting at games in Poland. And with exclusive access to a far right group in Ukraine which recruits and trains football hooligans to attack foreigners, Panorama asks: how safe will travelling football teams and their supporters be at this summer’s European festival of football?

Vir: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01jk4vr

Surviving Progress (2011)

“Every time history repeats itself the price goes up.”

Surviving Progress presents the story of human advancement as awe-inspiring and double-edged. It reveals the grave risk of running the 21st century’s software — our know-how — on the ancient hardware of our primate brain which hasn’t been upgraded in 50,000 years. With rich imagery and immersive soundtrack, filmmakers Mathieu Roy and Harold Crooks launch us on journey to contemplate our evolution from cave-dwellers to space explorers.

Ronald Wright, whose best-seller, “A Short History Of Progress” inspired this film, reveals how civilizations are repeatedly destroyed by “progress traps” — alluring technologies serve immediate needs, but ransom the future. With intersecting stories from a Chinese car-driving club, a Wall Street insider who exposes an out-of-control, environmentally rapacious financial elite, and eco-cops defending a scorched Amazon, the film lays stark evidence before us. In the past, we could use up a region’s resources and move on. But if today’s global civilization collapses from over-consumption, that’s it. We have no back-up planet.

Surviving Progress brings us thinkers who have probed our primate past, our brains, and our societies. Some amplify Wright’s urgent warning, while others have faith that the very progress which has put us in jeopardy is also the key to our salvation. Cosmologist Stephen Hawking looks to homes on other planets. Biologist Craig Venter, whose team decoded the human genome, designs synthetic organisms he hopes will create artificial food and fuel for all.

Distinguished Professor of Environment Vaclav Smil counters that five billion “have-nots” aspire to our affluent lifestyle and, without limits on the energy and resource-consumption of the “haves”, we face certain catastrophe. Others — including primatologist Jane Goodall, author Margaret Atwood, and activists from the Congo, Canada, and USA — place their hope in our ingenuity and moral evolution.

Surviving Progress leaves us with a challenge: To prove that making apes smarter was not an evolutionary dead-end.

Vir: http://survivingprogress.com

Books – The Last Chapter (2011)

With the rise of electronic books, is the final chapter about to be written in the long love story between books and their readers? Will the app take the place of the traditional book?

Alan Yentob discusses the subject with writers Alan Bennett, Douglas Coupland, Ewan Morrison and Gary Shteyngart, publisher Gail Rebuck, agent Ed Victor and librarian Rachael Morrison. They also smell books, making precise notes about the distinctive aroma of each.

Vir: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b01871m9

Povezava: http://chomikuj.pl/mybox/03.Video/2.Documentaries/*e2*97*8fBBC.IMAGINE/Imagine.2011.Books.The.Last.Chapter.HDTV,1281697185.mkv