Digital Literacies

Researching New Literacies, Learning and Everyday Life

Archive for the ‘Fun video’ Category

Traditional Game Play and the Digital

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A friend on my Facebook filmed herself involved in a strange ritual involving a plastic cup and some clapping. I watched it several times and then posted a comment to ask what it was all about.

It turned out, in order to understand, that I should have had my volume playing while I was watching, but also I needed to know the cultural back story. The song my friend was singing was related to a film, Pitch Perfect.
In the film they sing what has become known as ‘The Cup Song’.

It appears that this song is quite a trend – or I assume – was a trend. The film was made in 2012. Looking on YouTube there are loads of examples of girls doing the song – to different levels of expertise of course. This is my personal favourite:

The singing is superb. But it’s in the kitchen so has the charm of the amateur – something I love about YouTube.

And here is a tutorial (also in a kitchen):

(Maybe kitchens are a theme – the cup song maybe requires it. Sorry but I will not watch the whole film just to check).

Again, there are loads of these tutorials. Which I assume it is better to watch on slow and repeatedly. It seems the girls are all looking at each other’s videos; choosing to make one’s own is about social participation, joining in the action, parallel play on a global scale. There is a sense of this game playing involving participants across the life span. I think it’s wonderful!

It reminded me of my school days, when the girls would pass on songs and clapping routines in the playground. I used to love doing them. I especially loved doing them in big groups all together, singing really loudly. For some reason our teachers sometimes shook their heads at the dances that might go with our songs. Maybe they were a bit precocious – I remember one song referring to Dinah Dors!. (You can imagine the actions!)

But I love that this tradition goes on, partly with the aid of digital technology. It’s all been written about already by Jackie Marsh and Julia Bishop.
I think this playing online shows people interacting with those they already know – making films together – as well as with people they don’t know – the invisible audience and commenters. When I was a kid we performed sometimes for our teachers, sometimes parents. We taught the songs to each other – but mainly we just liked singing and clapping together. It was quite a physical way of showing friendship.

Play, media and commercial culture from the 1950s to the present day

Written by DrJoolz

May 25th, 2015 at 9:23 pm

New Take on New Literacies

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A kind of reverse grafitti is shown here with a acharity for the homeless cleaning up walls covered in streetart … but leaving a new trace… just the shape of a homeless person crouching for warmth.

In another example of text reproduction, see the antics of this photocopier here … and before you switch it off assuming how it will end … please view to this very short film’s conclusion.


And so we have two very different examples of new literacy practices – involving the use of memes and text reproduction.

Written by DrJoolz

February 19th, 2008 at 5:53 am

You Tube , Memes, the classroom

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Have been having a bit of fun looking around YouTube,
finding memes and stuff.

If a meme finds its way online or even
begins life on the web, it usually ends up moving into other types of space and
maybe back again.

here is some of the work from the clan du neon … campaigning to save the environment by
turning off display lights in shops … it looks fun!

So the meme exists partly online as
part of the whole clan du neon process involves filming the process of switching
off lights and to make the video available through YouTube.

You can see
more on this blog here. Or
on YouTube here.

Rosa told me about some other memes and we had fun looking up all
sorts of things … such as the WonderWoman copycats. Jen Gray is Grrrreat:



I dunno where she learned those
moves. But wow.

There are more related videos here.

So what else?

There is the Pedro dance. It all began with the film Napolon Dynamite with this dance here.

It has all become a bit of an Internet occupation to mimic the dance and to put on’es own spin on it. See for example here:

But I like the ones which jam together several ideas like the ipod version:

There is this other stuff going on too .. around the controversial ‘don’t tase me bro’ news story set in the University of Florida. Basically a university student was marched away from the floor when he was trying to ask Senator John Kerry some embarrassing questions. It has become quite a well watched incident on YouTube since the whole dreadful event was videoed.

There have been copycat uses of the line ‘don’t tase me bro’ which tend to be used as a way of signifying the USA as a police state. Sometimes to comic effect (depending on your viewpoint)


15 Seconds Of Fame

I wonder what you think of the ethics of films like this.

This time have a look on a different video sharing site. Here we can take a look at Britney Spears using ‘don’t tase me bro’ as a line in a song. Nice.

So, a lot of mixing and jamming here. Interesting in terms of literacy, shared and distributed authorship.

What of its significance to learning -

that the Internet promotes the sharing of ideas and the dispersal of information. That we can use and re-use and reformulate. That the power of texts can be increased and weakened through duplication.

Points of discussion:

1. Where do we draw the line in terms of ethical use of video material for parody?
2. Are political messages strengthened or weakened through their proliferation and adoption by online groups?

I like the idea of applying questions to texts such as:

What is the main message or content of this text?
What is the purpose/function of the text?
What media are used to convey the text?
Are these the most appropriate modes and media for the conveyance of the
text message?
Who benefits from this text? (e.g does anyone make money?)
What messages are prioritised and which information is undermined or
omitted? (Why?)
Does anyone suffer as the result of this text?

we can apply these questions to any text and we can teach kids to ask them. And for some texts we can also ask:

Why is this text so popular/unpopular?
Why do people want to mimic this text?
How do the original meanings and beneficiaries (etc) change as a
result of this text becoming a meme?

But …. Why would you want to do all this?
The answer is simple. Because in order to become literate,we need to understand social implications of texts as they are part of the whole meaning.

Written by DrJoolz

January 2nd, 2008 at 9:03 am

Dinner on the underground

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Just an example of how the internet has changed people’s lives … you cannot tell me they would have done this without planning to put it on YouTube first.

People lead more interesting lives through what they do online as well as what they do in order to report it / show it online.

Anyway, regarding this video, I love the way the drama challenges the space and the rituals of the London tube.

Written by DrJoolz

August 24th, 2007 at 6:27 am

The End of the World

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You should definitely watch this. (It only takes a minute.)
And pretend you are from California.
Flickr Mountain
(Took this photo in Williamsburg, Brooklyn NYC April 2006. Looks like the end of the world. This is now luxury apartments.)

Written by DrJoolz

July 24th, 2007 at 9:42 am

Posted in Fun video