Monday, September 04, 2017

Joerg Sprave can't get a break

More YouTube-related bullshit here. Background: Joerg Sprave, burly German curator of The Slingshot Channel on YouTube, had recently uploaded a video (now made private) that explored the plausibility of killing another human being with a pencil, per Keanu Reeves's rampage in "John Wick: Chapter 2" (reviewed here). In his video, Herr Sprave simulates the three kills that appear in the movie—a pencil up the nose and into the brain, a pencil through the ear and into the brain, and a pencil through the foramen magnum and into the brain—by using a combination of ballistics gel (to simulate human flesh) and plywood (to simulate the thin bone barriers that might impede a pencil's progress into someone's head). Sprave definitively shows that it is indeed possible to kill someone with a pencil in the ways portrayed in the movie, and further, that the pencil itself might go through the experience suffering little to no damage. Sprave's video contains no actual footage from the movie: instead, he has hand-drawn and animated the scenes in question. Despite these precautions, Sprave's video has been age-restricted and demonetized, which is part of YouTube's larger trend in curtailing freedom of speech, even for harmless YouTubers like our Teutonic slingshoteer.

People will soon be migrating off YouTube to seek greener, freer pastures. This coincides with the rise of what is being termed "alt-tech," i.e., sites and services where free speech is a cherished value. is an example of the alt-tech revolution in progress, as it styles itself a freer alternative to Twitter (where free-speech problems are also rampant). This trend will only continue: you can't start off with a rip-roaringly good capitalist model, then scale back to something less capitalistic and more oppressive without expecting to lose a lot of business.

No comments: