Blog Post

Oscar Academy: Go back to school

If you sat through the too-long, too-boring narcissist display of Hollywood’s utter lack of creative imagination this past Sunday, aka the Oscars 2007, you know there is no way you want to watch the self congratulatory drivel ever again.

All you want to do is watch the good bits – like Ellen’s monologue, Beyonce’s rump shaking moves and just maybe Martin Scorcese’s heartfelt words of thanks. And a lot of people did – on YouTube. (Maybe because those clips were not available on and

Instead of being glad that people (the same people who pay for their over the top lifestyles by watching movies) wanted to see some of the clips, The Academy of Motion Pictures, Arts and Sciences today asked YouTube to remove the clips.

Don’t they realize that these clips are like milk left on the counter top for too long, and will go sour soon? Don’t they realize that in this era when people are short on time, the three-hour overproduced crap that passes off as the Oscars broadcast is not needed?

Why blame the people for putting short clips on YouTube, and why take them down now? The question is why didn’t either the Academy or ABC offer the clips themselves – thus losing out on potential advertising dollars? Why not work with YouTube and give people what they want?

For an industry group that has “Sciences” as part of their name, the Academy is pretty clueless about the technologies that are changing their world, and is slow in adapting to the new reality – YouTube is what the new generation watches, it is massive and it grows with or without the old media’s approval.

(via Variety)

18 Responses to “Oscar Academy: Go back to school”

  1. I really agree with Om and everybody who is talking about alternatives… I haven’t even watched TV since Christmas time – YouTube is my preference. I can’t stand stupid ordinary movies, I’d better watch something funny or ironic, something true to life. I really can see no harm in YouTube, even though I respect copyright :-) Perhaps they are tied up with advertisers but I still think that they’d better come to an agreement with YouTube and let people watch what they really enjoy.

  2. I completely agree with you OM. Oscars should have had made use of web platform more effectively (with youtube or myspace)rather then forcing us to watch 2 hr program for 4 hrs with tons of advertisements in between. The other night it took me 4 and half hours to see how martin reacted for getting an Oscar and how Leo reacted when he missed out for forest.

    At the same time I do agree to contents rights.

  3. Om,

    Agree with you on the ‘stupidity’ of the MPAA. The reason you keep hearing “control’ (or the lack of it) from Content Owners is that there is a fundamental lack of understanding of these new form factors in Hollywood – even if the internet is accepted as a viable way of reaching consumers, there is an attempt to slot it into a window and merrily continue pushing the same product into “just another pipe”…….there is no realization that maybe, just maybe the mobile world and the internet world are different (kinda like how when TV started it was looked at as a means for “visible radio shows”) and need content – made for THAT medium to succeed…..I feel short pieces of content that you can pick and embed onto your blog, email your friends or download onto yr mobile device would have been ideal….how about the same for movies, DVD releases – how about letting people make mashups of scenes and post it onto their social networks, mail it to their friends and spread the good word…..they just dont see the point, just dont connect the dots….its sad AND scary, especially when they end up buying all the new and innovative companies around…

  4. @Dave – thanks – very well aware of Stallman and his views. I wont hijack this discussion – wish we discuss sometime – sure we be an interesting debate :). For now, i like Joes comment and glad Marc Cuban agrees with me…

    Om – thanks for the response – that is why people like reading your stuff because we know you actually enjoy the banter with your readers.

    Best Brian

  5. Clips are available on

    Mark Cuban wrote an interesting piece today about how he would leverage Youtube if he was in charge of the Oscars (and he thinks the Oscars has a right to control the distribution of their brand/content)

  6. Absolutely correct. I did watch the whole monster on TV (may be because I got a new LCD :) ). I am sure Academy guys don’t have a clue about the good or harm those YouTube clips can do. I can bet no body would like to watch the clips more than once. I think that is why ABC at the first place didn’t take the pain to do it themselves. They are accusing Youtube of copyright infringements ??? Dumb guys…

  7. In some ways I agree with the big media companies and Academy. They are looking at the future and really worried on how to “control” things. Of course, “control” is required if you want to make money.

    IMO, media companies are perplexed by the explosion of youtube. Even though it provides a great audience, it does not provide any way to control what gets out there. They are worried that if distribution is eased out, the very companies who are controlling the entertainment may lose their share.

    I would say it is high time that media companies come up with alternatives rather than just blocking you tube. Alternative cannot be again a fragmented solution where you have to hop in and out of etc for what you want. Instead it should be one single place, where previously aired episodes are available, users can mark the segments that they want to publish with their comments and annotations which enhances the experience in some ways.

    YouTube is great because of the community and tools around videos stored in it. What the media companies are offering in their websites is too bland and too imposing.

  8. Mike D and Brian,

    The argument here is not that people are watching it on YouTube and the copyright is being infringed.

    I think the big point is that “youtube” style videos is what people want and that is how they want to consume the content. why not offer it to them in packaging the audience wants to see.

    they clearly could have done the same thing on their respective websites and people would not go to youtube. i think it about listening to the market realities. YouTube is a leading indicator of consumer behavior when it comes to video. that’s all.

  9. Totally agree. It’s weird, because just last night I saw a great program on PBS’s Frontline about the changing of the news business and in it they showed Yahoo News’ GM crowing about how they’ve reduced 60 Minutes segments to nice bite-sized 3 minute pieces and I thought to myself “That sucks! Those segments are short enough already, and I don’t like the idea of going online and not getting the whole story”.

    But for something like the Oscars, bite-sized YouTube highlights are, as you say, the ONLY good way to take in the show. I haven’t watched any awards for probably 10 years because it’s a huge waste of time, but if I could just get the best three minutes every year, I’d do it for the Oscars, the Grammies, and probably the Emmys too.

  10. Om – have to disagree with you on this one. Ownership of content is is a huge problem onthe web today.

    For some reason, people feel like the web should be totally open and free from copyright laws – that is what Google wants yet their highly touted library project was cancelled because someone actually asked if they could scan in copyrighted material and give it away in the name of “do no evil”.

    Finally, so what if no one wants to watch the self indulgent Hollywood left for 3 hours. The network spent millions creating and promoting it and they should control who/when/how people see it – no matter how backwards anyone thinks it is.