Site back, upgraded

Netribution 1 was great in that it was all HTML and a bit of CSS – 15 years on not a single page has ever been hacked and most of them are still there.

Netribution 2.0 launched in 2006 on a CMS and unless CMSs get regularly upgraded they eventually get hacked or break. This just happened here, so as tempting as it has been to leave this space as an archive and change nothing, reality refused: I had to either take the site down and lose everything, or fix it. It's been rebuilt from scratch with an upgraded dbse (to the shiny joomla 3.3), and the user profiles & community section is now offline as it would cost $99 to upgrade it - but overall I've committed to a responsive redesign that risks looking a little like a rebirth, even if it isn't. To preserve a past I would sometimes rather forget, Netribution 2 continues in some form. Hopefully I'll re-theme it soon.

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Netribution web stats roundup - 9.5m page views in 2007

Netribution passed 9.5 million page views last year, according to our web stats engine Webalizer, a 69% increase on 2006. For the first time we passed 1 million page views a month, for two months - August and July. Figures for unique visiting addresses (ie computers/users) reached a peak of 73,686 in December.

It should be noted that these figures include robots and spiders - so the real figures are probably much lower. Hopefully we will soon have a better system.

Most popular pages on Netribution (no. of views)

1  Abroad With Bollywood � Spreading Mumbai's Reach (2006-05-18 14:31:14)  57189
2  Hull Film evolving with new director, Laurence Boyce (2007-03-19 13:41:27)  30823
3  Torrents, piracy and beyond: will the film industry survive? (2006-09-04 17:07:27)  25390
4  Marvel Comics Leaps Into Movie Making (2006-04-28 09:17:17)  23198
5  Fear Factors - Are We Just Running Scared ? (2006-04-10 16:12:41)  21130
6  Gentle Man Jim Corbett, Maneater Hunter & Filmmaker (2006-02-11 11:56:09)  15370
7  Building Comic Characters - ANDY SERKIS & The Boys Get Jolly (2006-02-13 14:47:16)  15360
8  Google Picks up You Tube for $1.65bn (2006-10-10 04:47:21)  14159
9  Parker to Helm Again � Getting Icy With Charlize Theron (2006-07-01 10:57:05)  14086
10  Ealing Mob Colourful Remakes Monsieur - Ne Pas Problem (2006-05-18 07:09:54)  13542
11  BAFTA winner JAKE GYLLENHAAL - Love and war (2006-01-26 18:04:01)  13446
12  First Film Festival Opens in the Ultra-Conservative Saudi Arabia (2006-07-13 15:53:16)  13135
13  Disney Co-Chair recognises 'piracy is a business model' (2006-10-10 04:54:01)  12458
14  Bollywood Rules, OK? (2006-03-18 13:32:02)  12151
15  Bollywood Seduces the West (2006-03-19 08:05:08)  11562
16  GRETCHEN MOL - Nailing a pin-up in The Notorious Bettie Page (2006-06-20 18:20:08)  11332
17  The Oseman Diaries - 2002 (2006-03-06 13:28:22)  11046
18  Ant & Dec Go Wide in Aliens Film (2006-03-19 11:37:50)  10503
19  BBC to Document a Royal Life in Saudi Arabia (2006-08-17 09:14:17)  10490
20  Dan Hartley - from Harry Potter to Joseff Hughes (2006-05-19 10:29:33)  10435
21  Pearl & Dean Theme Remixes For The Digital Age (2006-06-28 11:24:10)  10278
22  On The Road With The Truck of Dreams (2006-04-08 10:28:06)  10044
23  Film Four Goes Freeview From 23rd July (2006-07-04 13:47:55)  9956
24  EMMA THOMPSON - Talking tough (2006-01-29 01:35:04)  9751
25  The new Tax Relief System for British Films (2006-05-24 04:02:51)  9642
26  Hard-core Sex Film to Premiere as Art at Tate Modern (2006-07-07 15:21:09)  9276
27  Alleged Sexual Assault on Australian Big Brother (2006-07-03 09:30:28)  9190
28  Exasperated by lack of media interest in genocide, filmmakers headed to Darfur (2006-09-18 12:20:30)  8972
29  Lyra found for Philip Pullman's Dark Materials (2006-06-29 16:18:00)  8957
30   Shiver Me Timbers � It�s a Silver Screen Swashbuckler (2006-07-04 15:32:31)  8947

 

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News roundup : Paramount follows the free with Jackass, Look, Golden Globes and Alice in Wonderland

alicehatterParamount has become the first studio to experiment with free downloads of features, releasing Jackass 2.5 ahead of the DVD release for free. Sister company Comedy Central recently announced that they would offer every South Park episode on their site for free in an advert supported model. Paramount parent Viacom is currently suing Goo-Tube for 'copyright infringement' and has resisted releasing content on the platform, instead making gems such as the Daily Show and the Colbert Report available only on their own sites.

This Friday sees the release in the US of Look, a feature made entirely from surveilance footage, claiming to encourage viewers to ask "what safeguards exist to make sure highlights of your ass are not making it onto the most viewed list on YouTube?" but also a very cheap way of showing people undressing in clothes shop changing rooms.

The Golden Globe Noms are out. While the Coen Borther's No Country for Old Men picked up early awards season momentum, Britflick Atonement took the lead at the Globes with seven nominations

With the release of Be Kind, Rewind on the horizon, fan film is getting more serious with the establishment of the Organization for Transformative Works which will support fan works.

Other odds and sods, the ever excellent Cinematech is asking why film festivals don't move into distribution, YouTube has expanded its revenue sharing programme, and - whoooo - Tim Burton is set to direct a live action Alice in Wonderland.

 

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Netribution revamp

Well in honour of being turned down for Film Council Publications Fund money - we've decided to revamp the site. You may notice the new design. There's also a few changes:

- profile URLs. Your profile can have it's own netribution.co.uk/myname address to share.
- profiles also now feature messaging, an image gallery, a video page (just YouTube and Google at the moment, but we will expand as soon as possible) and comments system.- custom profile pages.. this is quite limited at the moment, but you can change the colour of links, and set a background picture like this.
- new address.. no more netribution.co.uk/2/ nonsense, so you may want to update your bookmarks.

There's also a new link up with MovieScope magazine - more info to follow, and quite a few things in the works.

 

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“Be Shameless To Succeed” Top Drama Writer Tells Manchester Writers

 

Paul Abbott - award winning writerEvery inch of floor space was taken up by young, would-be writers, when acclaimed TV drama writer, Paul Abbott, addressed students attending the Northwest's huge Media Careers Information Day, held at Manchester's G-Mex.

 

And the maestro's message to those hoping to follow in his footsteps was simple - put two jobs worth of effort into one job, and believe in yourself. "You've got to think like you will make it, and have pride in what you're doing," he told the packed-event.

 

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Roundup: Black Friday, the Development Fund, FESPACO, Adobe and Apple

fespaco_2007I'm in the final throws of pulling together a new book so haven't time to post properly, but here's a round up of some of the latest stories..

The big story in the UK is the sudden closure of the GAAP tax schemes, which Martin Churchill of Tax Efficient Review claims could cost the industry some £2bn. While the Treasury argues the scheme was being exploited, the sudden closure without consultation or warning brings back echoes of the careless confusion and uncertainty surrounding the replacement to Section 48, with Variety naming the day of the announcement Black Friday.  Prescience Film Finance's Paul Brett, who previously worked at the UK Film Council and BFI, told Screen Daily "We've got IFAs around the country that have been raising funding that we won't be able to use. That's terribly sad... A lot of UK films that were going to shoot over the next few weeks are going to fall apart". Films such as St Trinians, Brideshead Revisited and Genova were relying on GAAP funds for up to a third of their budget, and were set to start shooting shortly. Further uncertainty as to the status of films completed under sale and leaseback last year is also to be resolved as it seems the legislation inadvertently nulls the transitional arrangements from those films to the new system.  The Inland Revenue announcement in full.

wmbmtmtanyaseghatchianHeyday Films' Tanya Seghatchian (left), who famously brought Harry Potter to the attention of David Heyman and continued to produce it for Warner Bros, is joining the UK Film Council as Head of the Development Fund. She also produced Pawel Pawlikowski's My Summer of Love.

FESPACO, Africa's largest film festival, has awarded its top prize to Ezra, a film about a child soldier in Sierra Leone. Director Newton Aduaka, who picked up the $20,000 prize has long been associated with the festival, nabbing its best short film and best first film prize. Africa's actually been on my mind this week as I tried to learn more about finance there - and with the help of James MacGregor's well trained eye learned that a) there's not much money b) 70% of films distributed in Africa are American and c) the impressive looking African Film Commission, the nearest thing to a screen agency for any part of the continent I've been able to find is actually headquartered in LA. 

While I remember it, Jonathan Letham's essay The Ecstacy of Influence makes me drool with envy for its lucidity on the subject of creativity as a gift, as opposed to a commodity (something I've also been thinking about in context of funding book 3, and my recent discovery of Lewis Hynde's The Gift). At its heart is as a discussion of how culture has always thrived from reusing, shaping, riffing and transforming creations. The Hollywood Reporter's Steve Bryant also speaks in favour of a remix culture with a more commercial angle: “Media that can’t be manipulated is almost useles.. Online, I can track who watches my clips, who reads my posts, who liked my mash-up. The Internet flatters us with attention in a way Hollywood no longer can.”

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Work Experience Exploiters Named and Shamed by NUJ

 

Shocking Exploitations Revealed in Media Companies

NUJ logoThe NUJ will today (27/02/07) deliver a letter to Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs (HMRC) naming and shaming employers who exploit journalists on work experience.

The union, which is launching its Work Experience Guidelines simultaneously, is demanding that the government investigate breaches of the National Minimum Wage legislation and take action to force media companies to comply.

The NUJ's allegations are based on the results of a recent major survey of work placements which revealed shocking exploitation.

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Journalism Put to the Sword in 2006

 

Iraq 155 Murders

Unexplained Killings

A Year of Unprecedented Brutality

 

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) said today that 2006 was a year of tragedy for the world's media as killings of reporters and media staff reached historic levels with at least 155 murders, assassinations and unexplained deaths.

 

"Media have become more powerful and journalism has become more dangerous," said Aidan White, IFJ General Secretary. "2006 was the worst year on record - a year of targeting, brutality and continued impunity in the killing of journalists."

 

During the year the numbers began to accumulate with civil strife and resistance to military occupation in Iraq. The IFJ says media became prime targets of terror attacks or victims of poor soldiering. By the year's end, 68 media staff had been killed, bringing to 170 the number killed in the country since the invasion in April 2003.

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News roundup: Flushed Away with Saw fainters, copyright rethink, and Borat's next move

Aflushed aways the first UN sponsored World Internet Governance Forum gets under way, Amnesty International is calling for greater awareness of countries with censorship and freedom of speech violations. The forum aims to provide global discussion between the multitude of potentially conflicting interests on the web.

Topping the box office charts in the UK and US, Saw 3 has provided distributor Lionsgate with dream PR after three people passed out during screenings in one night in Stevenage. A further woman collapsed at a cinema in Cambridge, tho it has not been confirmed what film she was watching.

UK think tank the Institute for Public Policy Research has argued that the UK's copyright laws should be updated to reflect the way people consume media, including a private right to copy (ie purchased CDs and DVDs onto a computer or portable player for viewing). Meanwhile a crack down on copyrighted content has begun at both YouTube and MySpace with the former removing (amongst other things) all episodes of the Daily Show. One system which allows for consumers to do pretty much whatever they want with the media they posess is Creative Commons, the 'copyleft' licensese used in over 160 million creative works since first being released, and which has just unveiled drafts for their version 3.0 licenses.

As Borat advance buzz escalates in direct proportion to anger from the nation of Kazakstan, creator Sacha Baron Cohen has reportedly signed a £22m deal with Universal. In New York, meanwhile, Aardman Animation's third feature, Flushed Away, staring Kate Winslett and Hugh Jackman, has received its premiere.

 

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Wysiwyg 80-80 International Filmmaking Challenge

 

Eight Cities, Eight Film Crews -  Eight Features in 80 Hours

The spotlight turns on eight filmmaking teams in eight citiesInspired by their win in this year's Cannes 24 Hour Film Challenge with Towel Talk - a four minute mystery made in four hours from concept to completion,  Wysiwyg will now run an international competition with production teams from eight major cities, each one competing to produce an 80-minute feature in 80 hours.

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