Jump to content

Comment moderation and user opinions (on Nofilmschool)


Mark Isah

Recommended Posts

Hey eoshd.

 

 

Long time lurker here. I just want to say/share something regarding the comment moderation that is happening in nofilmschool.com. To clarify, I don't mean any hate to nofilmschool; as a matter of fact, I've been tuning in to them for years now.

 

Recently, nofilmschool.com published a post regarding Shane Hurlbut's camera test putting the Alexa against the C500. There were a few users expressing their opinions in a civil manner. Here's the cache. There were also a user who talked about the cinematography of Shane Hurlbut in his recent movies (Need For Speed etc.) compared to his older movies (Terminator, Deadfall etc.). Again, all in a good note. Unfortunately, the comment section was closed soon after that comment was posted.

 

Another asked the reasonning for closing the comment section in a new post by nofilmschool. Their posts were also removed. Here's the cache. Its just weird. I know Andrew had the same issue a while back.

 

Again, no hate for nofilmschool. Its just that as a frequent reader, it amazes me how much they moderate the comments. Healthy conversations should be allowed in my opinion regarding of different opinions. I guess I felt the need to share this with you guys.

 

Thanks.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Administrators

I don't read the site so not sure what's going on there… I do however know we are coming to a point where 99% of the internet is recycled material re-posed and re-posted ad infinitum. My RSS feed this weekend read like the contents of a junk mail folder. One black friday deal after the other, with the occasional cut and pasted news article. Not a good sign for the future of the internet. Censorship? Just the tip of the iceberg my friend :)

Link to post
Share on other sites

This forum is no different re censorship of threads/posts.

 

I've yet to see a thoughtful discussion about video censored on this site. Criticisms about the owner, off-topic stuff about other people's personalities outside of filmmaking, yah i've seen that cut. But nothing that was really on-topic gets killed.

 

If I owned the site, i'd like to think I'd keep everything, short of spam. But since I don't own a site, and that means there are things I don't know about said ownership, I'm willing to keep my criticisms about censorship to a minimum.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Welcome to the internet, unfortunately. I follow a wide variety of forums on different subjects I'm into and while they all *say* they encourage free speech..... well....

 

I understand deleting certain things. Outright insults. Hate speech. Even if the discussion of the thread goes wildly off topic...perhaps move it to a new thread.

 

But way too often, stuff that serves as a healthy debate is deleted if it goes against the hive mind of that particular forum. People are insecure and can't stand up to scrutiny. 

 

This forum did it just recently. The guy who posted the fake test with the GH3/BMPCC, where both samples were really the GH3? It spawned a heated discussion, but there was no justifiable reason to remove it entirely, beyond soothing ego wounds. None. 

Link to post
Share on other sites

There is no free speech anywhere.  One only realizes this when they try to get anyone's attention.  Let's say you want to go into the video business like Zach.  Where can you put of a "free" post of your services?  No where.  You can't put it up on private property, say a store (unless the owner gave you permission).  You can't put it up in the public square; they take it down if it's not non-profit.  You can't put it up at your library--same rules.  The fact is, when you want to say anything you have to deal with the person who owns the web-server, bandwidth, store-front, or even message board.  Everything you look at, touch and see, is owned by someone else where you have to play by their rules--this site included.  

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Administrators

There is no free speech anywhere.  One only realizes this when they try to get anyone's attention.  Let's say you want to go into the video business like Zach.  Where can you put of a "free" post of your services?  No where.  You can't put it up on private property, say a store (unless the owner gave you permission).  You can't put it up in the public square; they take it down if it's not non-profit.  You can't put it up at your library--same rules.  The fact is, when you want to say anything you have to deal with the person who owns the web-server, bandwidth, store-front, or even message board.  Everything you look at, touch and see, is owned by someone else where you have to play by their rules--this site included.  

 

Quite true and a fact of life I'm afraid!

 

Find a set of rules you're most comfortable with, is my advice. I'm not so comfortable with the set of rules at play on other sites. I think they're a bit warped.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Hey eoshd.

 

 

Long time lurker here. I just want to say/share something regarding the comment moderation that is happening in nofilmschool.com. To clarify, I don't mean any hate to nofilmschool; as a matter of fact, I've been tuning in to them for years now.

 

Recently, nofilmschool.com published a post regarding Shane Hurlbut's camera test putting the Alexa against the C500. There were a few users expressing their opinions in a civil manner. Here's the cache. There were also a user who talked about the cinematography of Shane Hurlbut in his recent movies (Need For Speed etc.) compared to his older movies (Terminator, Deadfall etc.). Again, all in a good note. Unfortunately, the comment section was closed soon after that comment was posted.

 

Another asked the reasonning for closing the comment section in a new post by nofilmschool. Their posts were also removed. Here's the cache. Its just weird. I know Andrew had the same issue a while back.

 

Again, no hate for nofilmschool. Its just that as a frequent reader, it amazes me how much they moderate the comments. Healthy conversations should be allowed in my opinion regarding of different opinions. I guess I felt the need to share this with you guys.

 

Thanks.

 

Considering the comments section at no film school is generally pretty awful and malicious, I was very surprised when they

removed the comments from the shane hurlbut article as soon as people started saying the footage looked cheap. Honestly

I agreed. It looked much worse than many films shot 40 years ago.

Link to post
Share on other sites

They removed it because they can't be seen to endorse anything that isn't arse licking when it comes to the big names in the DSLR community.

 

Shane isn't really a big name in the DSLR community. Where he is a big name is in the "Actually doing films"- community, which caters to a quite a different audience. Shane's articles about lighting have been really good.

 

I don't see the problem with the images, they are tests, designed to shoot certain types of shots where these guys test the dynamic range and color science. Those tests were about 1000x better than anything done by the so-called "DSLR community". You can see the reasoning behind decisions (Alexa daytime and C500 nighttime).

 

It really seems like people are jealous. They won't say it. But that's how it is. And the comments section of nofilmschool is hilarious. There's this Gene guy who brings up the GH2 in almost every single thing posted.

Link to post
Share on other sites

The thing is, I can't see the reasoning behind the decisions, other than a relationship with Canon. The C500 looks repulsive in low light. All skin turns yellow.

 

Here's his tests vs Alexa. I said the same thing in the comments. See for yourself, using Alexa all round would have looked a lot nicer I think. It's the best low light cinema camera by far, mostly due to dual readout from the sensor. You could make the Alexa look like the C500 if you really wanted, but not the other way round.

 

 

The man is definitely better than me, and more experienced than me, I'll freely admit it and I'm happy to learn. But  I'm not happy to just kowtow without thinking. I still don't see why you'd pick that camera.

 

As a result the night bits in Need For Speed all have weird yellow skin. Sure it's a look, but it's one I don't like, personally.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Administrators

Shane isn't really a big name in the DSLR community. Where he is a big name is in the "Actually doing films"- community, which caters to a quite a different audience. Shane's articles about lighting have been really good.

 

It's good that Shane has gone to the effort of actually sharing what he does in the 'actually doing films' community. Now you have to look at the motivation of Nofilmschool for their posts to get into the crux of what I have a problem with. Here, they are taking someone else's content and selling advertising around it. It takes 10 minutes to bang out an article like that. It takes determination, effort and skill to put together something more hands-on as Shane has done. Politically, there's another reason why blogs post uncritical glowing articles about Hollywood DPs, and that's because they want the hits and they want to curry favour with the industry's leading lights.

 

Now if people on the comments are questioning Shane's test, saying it shows a Canon bias, then let them say it... I have a real problem with censorship. And that has nothing to do with Shane... It has to do with the blogs. So many of them brown nose people with a rabid furore and it reads like a PR piece rather than a constructive and objective article. It's unnecessary and unhealthy. Everyone deserves honest feedback even Hollywood cinematographers.

 

I don't think Shane is paid to say nice things about Canon but some of his statements could benefit from being backed up with some more detail. My honest opinion on the video above is it's compelling but doesn't make clear what part is down to grading and how much of it is purely down to the sensor as a 'digital emulsion'. Could you bring the Alexa to life with more energy from the ProRes or raw? The video and voice over doesn't go there.

 

Or does the sensor just not respond as well as the C500 to colour in very low light conditions? That part could be clearer. The rest I enjoyed seeing... Much more telling than a chart test!!

 

As it is taken at face value, what I got from it was the Alexa has more dynamic range but doesn't look as good in low light as the C500 and doesn't have the same punch or contrast to the colours in the naturally lit city nightscape outside the car. So maybe C500 was the best choice for this particular scene. That's why tests are useful.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • Administrators

 

Shane has some tougher words for the C500 in the dynamic range test.

 

The Alexa went to 4 stops to the right before you had a video clipped look to the highlights.

 

Epic didn't do as well.

 

But the C500 started to go bad at 2 stops. "The thing I noticed about the Epic", says Shane, "is that it still feels filmic with the exposure blowout but the C500 doesn't, it starts to look yellow (with the skin tones)".

 

Personally I prefer the skin tones on the Epic. Bit magenta but looks more attractive, less yellowish than the C500.

 

epic-vs-c500.jpg

Link to post
Share on other sites

 

 

The man is definitely better than me, and more experienced than me, I'll freely admit it and I'm happy to learn. But  I'm not happy to just kowtow without thinking. I still don't see why you'd pick that camera.

 

 

 

 

I think the answer, or something close to this, is in something he says near the very end.  He says the C500 had an "electric" quality.  It's all about the way it responded to those lights (I dislike Sony sensors for this reason too).  

 

The Alexa, likely more than any other high end camera, delivers an image that feels more like film and more analog.  For whatever reason, that "electric" or electronic, video-look of the Canon was somehow more appealing.  

 

I see what he's responding to but, like you, I wouldn't have picked anything but the Alexa either.  I didn't find anything dull at all about the night driving sequences in Drive.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Andrew, I respect your site and what you do at EOSHD, but for some reason every time our site is brought up in conversation you feel the need to express how much you have a problem with it, and how little work we actually do (disregarding the original content we do have and the 20-30 interviews we've done this year alone about a number of different topics). We are asked to share much of the content we do share (just as I'm sure you are), with hundreds of requests per week that we simply don't get to or don't feel is something we should share. 

 

In terms of upsetting advertisers, all of our writers, including me, write whatever we want. We've had relationships with Sony, Canon, and Blackmagic at one point or another, and I've said plenty of unflattering things about all of them when I felt they needed to be said. You can go ahead and explore past posts if you don't believe that. 

 

As far as moderation goes, we do our best with the resources we have. Sometimes we see a situation about to get out of control and we do our best to make sure that doesn't happen. Some of these decisions also come down to our personal schedules.

 

You mentioned that you have a real problem with censorship, but as you know, nothing is ever black and white, and you actually requested it yourself on this post on No FIlm School:

 

I’m disappointed at the lack of moderation and level headed comments here. Why is the site admin seemingly happy to let my name be dragged through the mud without any moderation at all?

 

Trolls.

 

Regardless, anyone who has read NFS knows that we have a problem with how vicious people are for absolutely no reason, and it's something we are working on for the next site design.

 

Regarding the arse licking you mentioned, we respect those working in and around this industry. It has nothing to do with not wanting to upset people, we don't see a need to start trouble for no reason. If someone is going to take the time to share tests or videos they've done free of charge, that's knowledge that helps everyone, and something that literally didn't exist not too long ago.

 

Unless you're a one-man-band in this industry, no one is in this alone. The film industry, as well as any industry related to moving pictures, relies on teams of people, and disrespecting people over little or insignificant things doesn't usually make people want to work with you. We also don't believe this sort of thing benefits our community in any way. There is enough negativity on the internet for us to be adding to it with our posts on NFS.

 

Nothing is easy about any job that involves shooting something in the field, and nothing is easy about running a website, and for that reason we think there should be a certain level of professionalism and respect that goes along with that.

Link to post
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.
Note: Your post will require moderator approval before it will be visible.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Restore formatting

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

×
×
  • Create New...