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Anyone else annoyed by ARI's new YouTube video style?

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ARI has posted these two videos on YouTube recently, with a new style:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j6ilV2J8XnI...re=channel_page

I dont really think that ideas as important as the ones being discussed, should be presented in a cheesy ad-like form like that. I dont know if this is just a personal opinion, but I usually get turned off really fast if i see "slick salesmen" type ads with shiny lights and rehearsed speeches because that gives the impression that what is being said isnt that important. I personally like better the style of sitting in a chair in front of the bookshelf, talking in a regular, but professional manner.

Also, if there are people who have gotten second-hand information that O'ism is a cult, and those two videos are the first time he has heard/seen actual Objectivists talk, I dont think he's going to be that interested in finding out more. Im halfexpecting Yaron to invite everyone to the launching pad on top of the ARI building, preparing for our trip to planet Randia at the end of the first video :( . Obviously us who understand O'ism can get the actual message behind the presentation, but i dont think anyone else can

Edited by JJJJ

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I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. Would you prefer a video in which an ARI intellectual was "winging it," instead of delivering a message that he has rehearsed? And how does Dr. Brook appear to be a "slick salesman?" Is he conniving you into buying something cheap? Is he actually trying to sell anything? And how does this appear cult-ish to you? Is Dr. Brook trying to indoctrinate people with Objectivist principles or is he encouraging them to read a novel that he genuinely believes will likely advance their lives?

Your analysis is way off and insulting to the efforts of ARI. ARI has had more impact in the last year than it has ever had before, and it is not because people are being sucked in to some sort of "cult."

Edited by Mimpy

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ARI has posted these two videos on YouTube recently, with a new style:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j6ilV2J8XnI...re=channel_page

I dont really think that ideas as important as the ones being discussed, should be presented in a cheesy ad-like form like that. I dont know if this is just a personal opinion, but I usually get turned off really fast if i see "slick salesmen" type ads with shiny lights and rehearsed speeches because that gives the impression that what is being said isnt that important. I personally like better the style of sitting in a chair in front of the bookshelf, talking in a regular, but professional manner.

Also, if there are people who have gotten second-hand information that O'ism is a cult, and those two videos are the first time he has heard/seen actual Objectivists talk, I dont think he's going to be that interested in finding out more. Im halfexpecting Yaron to invite everyone to the launching pad on top of the ARI building, preparing for our trip to planet Randia at the end of the first video :( . Obviously us who understand O'ism can get the actual message behind the presentation, but i dont think anyone else can

Well, I didn't think there were that bad, really. The first one was kinda of long - not sure if people who are not already familiar with ARI would sit through 9 minutes, but Yaron Brook made some good points.

I don't think they are cheesy. I don't think they are unprofessional - look, they are trying to reach a wide audience. And the manner that they did these videos, I think does that. I don't think making the spokespeople (Yaron Brook - and the lady I don't know who she is in the 2nd video) sound stuffy and overally academic is a good idea for something like this.

I was actually surprised to find the format pretty decent (except for the length of the first one - two long!)

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Well Yaron looked like he was summoning the light of heaven with that cheesy glowing background.

The speech was poorly written. Ayn Rand's "epical" novel? A banker "with a heart of gold"? Mentioning "Nazi Germany" within the first two minutes? On top of that it was tedious to sit through, because it was too unfocused and sprawling. There's no reason for an introductory video about Objectivism to be almost ten minutes long.

I'm also dubious about Yaron being the face of Objectivism, since his oratory skills are mediocre at best and his Elmer Fudd voice doesn't help any.

The second video was better, mostly because it was shorter, but the presenter was even worse than Brook. Her awful monotone voice made me wonder whether she had just crawled out of her pod.

What ARI needs to do is hire better speechwriters, video technicians, and directors. The whole format is amateurish and embarrassing.

Edited by Myself

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There's a few more videos shot in the same type of format on the ARI website, and I have to say I the lighting is unflattering to Dr. Brook -- they should certainly adjust it. It makes his face look red compared to his neck, and the cleft between his eyes is highlighted.

Look at Yaron Brook in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGWuNq66v_0, and then in

-- he hardly seems like the same person. He looks excellent in the second one.

28331766.jpg

I have to say the woman in the most recent video looks spectacular though -- very beautiful. A tad robotic, but beautiful. :(

Edited by JMartins

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I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about. Would you prefer a video in which an ARI intellectual was "winging it," instead of delivering a message that he has rehearsed?

Nice false dichotomy. I already gave you the alternative, and that wasnt "winging it":

I personally like better the style of sitting in a chair in front of the bookshelf, talking in a regular, but professional manner.

And how does Dr. Brook appear to be a "slick salesman?" Is he conniving you into buying something cheap? Is he actually trying to sell anything?

No, he isnt conning me, or trying to sell anything, hence my questioning why the format of the video was similar to that if he actually was.

And how does this appear cult-ish to you? Is Dr. Brook trying to indoctrinate people with Objectivist principles or is he encouraging them to read a novel that he genuinely believes will likely advance their lives?

Once again, way besides the point. He wasnt trying to indoctrinate people, hence my questioning why the format of the video was similar to that if he actually was. But the cult thing wasnt my main beef with the video, it was just something that i thought instantly when i first saw the bright white background. There are a lot of people who have never heard anything but second-hand information about O'ism, therefore videos like these, that are clearly aimed to people who arent Objectivists, should ideally be of a different format.

This may just be a personal pet peeve of mine, but i dislike it when videos that discuss really important topics are riddled with all kinds of "suggestive" graphical tricks and phrases like, "sound familiar?" and "everyone knows that...". Thank goodness that there wasnt any background music, that would have been the final straw.

Your analysis is way off and insulting to the efforts of ARI. ARI has had more impact in the last year than it has ever had before, and it is not because people are being sucked in to some sort of "cult."

I dont know what last year has to do with anything, as the older of the two videos of the new style i complained about is just over 2 weeks old. ARI is great, and doing a great job. That is exactly why i brought this up, as i dont think this new video style is the way to build on that.

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Nice false dichotomy. I already gave you the alternative, and that wasnt "winging it":

It's not a false alternative. Either he rehearses what he is going to say or he doesn't. Even in other video op-eds that ARI intellectuals have done, they've rehearsed it, no matter how "regular" it might look.

No, he isnt conning me, or trying to sell anything, hence my questioning why the format of the video was similar to that if he actually was.

I don't see how it is similar.

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It's not a false alternative. Either he rehearses what he is going to say or he doesn't. Even in other video op-eds that ARI intellectuals have done, they've rehearsed it, no matter how "regular" it might look.

There is a difference between having a pre-written speech off the teleprompter, having gone over your speech beforehand and winging it. Also, there is a difference between "sounding rehearsed" and "having rehearsed". Yaron Brook didnt sound all that "regular" when he spoke, hence it sounding like he was selling something.

I don't see how it is similar.

Graphic tricks, unnatural choice of words, "sounding rehearsed" etc.

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I think it's pretty cool that ARI has reached a stage where folks are critiquing the production quality of their video, taking their very existence and growth for granted. Like most small operations that cannot afford to outsource everything to large professional firm, there are things ARI will learns as it goes. As some aspect increases in scale, it will be able to bring in more outside technical help. For example, I've heard that at one point, as their number of TV appearances started to increase, ARI got some PR person to give a few of their folk a short training session on how to handle TV appearances.

If there are professional folk with opinions about how they can do better (particularly suggestions that do not cost lots of money), I assume ARI would be happy to hear those suggestions. For all others, ARI would be happy to receive more donations, so that they can grow in scale and be able to afford more technical outsourcing.

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ARI has posted these two videos on YouTube recently, with a new style:

I dont really think that ideas as important as the ones being discussed, should be presented in a cheesy ad-like form like that.

I reviewed the first video and I was not turned off or annoyed, nor did I think it was "cheesy", or in an "ad-like form."

I thought it was very well done, and appropriate. The ideas are presented as important, and are not undercut at all by the presentation.

Regards,

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The ideas are presented as important, and are not undercut at all by the presentation.
As long as some effort goes into the videos, I think this would be the case. sNerd is no doubt right. Not even a few years ago ARI didn't release much writing, and what they did release didn't cover a lot of world happenings. Today, they have better writers and cover more.

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So long as the content is intellectual and serious, I have no problem with it. I mean, Yaron gets a lot of food for thought in to his video, perhaps too much. The one with the girl is eye candy, no doubt, but she is not talking fluff. Just look at the discussion below the video.

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Good point, sNerd! And I'm sure if someone out there with a photography or film (lighting techniques) background wants to volunteer to help ARI, they'd be happy to talk to you. Money talks too. The more money ARI has, the more they can do.

Edited by K-Mac

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I'm generally picky about these things, but I like it just fine. The simple soft colors are nice and everything looks sharp. The only quibble I have is that the background is so white and bright the bloom actually envelopes Yaron a bit. Not a big deal however, especially when you consider what he's saying and doing are vastly more important than the (still nicely done) art direction.

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There's a few more videos shot in the same type of format on the ARI website, and I have to say I the lighting is unflattering to Dr. Brook -- they should certainly adjust it. It makes his face look red compared to his neck, and the cleft between his eyes is highlighted.

Look at Yaron Brook in http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGWuNq66v_0, and then in

-- he hardly seems like the same person. He looks excellent in the second one.

28331766.jpg

I have to say the woman in the most recent video looks spectacular though -- very beautiful. A tad robotic, but beautiful. :)

Yeah, that was weird, but it appears to be a technical issues, I don't (I would hope anyway) that the effect was not intentional. And I agree, the second one did look better. And I liked the length, short and sweet.

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Yeah, that was weird, but it appears to be a technical issues, I don't (I would hope anyway) that the effect was not intentional. And I agree, the second one did look better. And I liked the length, short and sweet.

I'm sorry, but I've seen Yarron speak years ago, and just watched some of his more recent youtube vids, and in neither case did he talk like Daffy Duck. Anyone know if he's had a minor stroke, or has developed a speech impediment? Maybe he was having a heat stroke from the bright lights? Although Yarron is justifiably a solid intellectual spokesperson for the movment, aesthetically even a good looking robot-girl in isn't as offputting as was his presentation. For me it was just too distracting to continue to watch.

I recently emailed Dr. Peikoff about his side profile on his new transitioning web banner, as he looks like Alexander the Great on the side of a coin. I suggested that he use the format already established, and create a graphic showing him giving a passionate lecture, or in various historical scenes with Ayn Rand or others. I said that might be less offputting than the side of his head. (He has admitted several times in the past that the camera doesn't do him justice) Of course I've not received any reply so far, but I'm not current on the podcasts.

If the movement is to be taken seriously, then its organizers need to take the basic elements of presentation seriously. I learned this in business school, and working in visual communications, and doing most of my own PR & marketing work. Ayn had a fantastic sense of aesthetically gripping presentation, and if the current torchbearers had even half her ability...

<*>aj

Edited by aristotlejones

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Hmm, I liked the second video although the dull purple background was not easy on the eyes. Yaron sounds about like he always does--Israeli. His slight accent and somewhat awkward phrasing/emphasis is really apparent here whereas it's not so noticeable when he's speaking more extemporaneously because EVERYONE sounds a little awkward speaking extemporaneously. If they're going to do prepared speeches like these, they shouldn't use Yaron--either that or he needs to be coached EXTENSIVELY on how to stress things so that they will sound right to a native English-speaker. He looked a bit uncomfortable and his hand gestures were excessive. I also thought they would have been better-served to show the various editions of Atlas Shrugged with their different covers instead of sticking with that one really ugly cover--it would have provided more visual interest.

It was also a poor choice to have the words come up that simply reiterated precisely what Yaron was saying at various points--this looked like they were assuming the audience was stupid or not paying attention. Instead, it would have been better to dig up or create some graphics that illustrated the issues and post them at the proper points: the change of graphic would have provided the necessary emphasis in a subtler manner.

I expect that ARI will keep improving and refining their technique if they keep up with this video thing. For instance, Dr. Peikoff's first few podcasts were pretty awkward but he has the format down now and they continue to improve.

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If they're going to do prepared speeches like these, they shouldn't use Yaron--either that or he needs to be coached EXTENSIVELY on how to stress things so that they will sound right to a native English-speaker.

Why you find that necessary?

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Why you find that necessary?

Because he stresses his words in a way that an American would find weird and awkward. If you're going to learn another language and go about giving speeches in it, it's best to learn how to do it properly. Not that it's easy--goodness knows I have no interest in trying it myself. Of course, it may not entirely be an Israeli thing. Yaron mostly hangs out with New Yawkahs and his speech was no doubt influenced by the seriously bizarre dialects prevalent in that part of the country. A serious speaker of any stripe, however, needs to cleanse as much dialect from their speech as possible in the name of professionalism.

It really all depends on how important a given speech is to you (or giving speeches at all) and what you intend to accomplish. But stressing the wrong part of a sentence can be extremely jarring to a listener because that is very important to telling how the sentence is grammatically constructed in English. There is a HUGE difference involved in the meaning of a sentence depending on whether a following clause is verbally attached (by stressing it and the sentence equally) or divorced from the preceding words. I sometimes have this problem in reading because I'll begin reading a sentence assuming it is phrased one way, find that there's a clause I didn't anticipate attached, and I have to go back and re-read it to get the proper impact and meaning.

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Because he stresses his words in a way that an American would find weird and awkward. If you're going to learn another language and go about giving speeches in it, it's best to learn how to do it properly. Not that it's easy--goodness knows I have no interest in trying it myself. Of course, it may not entirely be an Israeli thing. Yaron mostly hangs out with New Yawkahs and his speech was no doubt influenced by the seriously bizarre dialects prevalent in that part of the country. A serious speaker of any stripe, however, needs to cleanse as much dialect from their speech as possible in the name of professionalism.

It really all depends on how important a given speech is to you (or giving speeches at all) and what you intend to accomplish. But stressing the wrong part of a sentence can be extremely jarring to a listener because that is very important to telling how the sentence is grammatically constructed in English. There is a HUGE difference involved in the meaning of a sentence depending on whether a following clause is verbally attached (by stressing it and the sentence equally) or divorced from the preceding words. I sometimes have this problem in reading because I'll begin reading a sentence assuming it is phrased one way, find that there's a clause I didn't anticipate attached, and I have to go back and re-read it to get the proper impact and meaning.

If it was affecting what is being communicated but I have never had a problem understanding Dr. Brook's meaning. I enjoy his accent (I wish mine was closer to that) and mode of presentation. I find all the reasons you listed, considering what we are trying to achieve and how good Dr. Brook is at it, as inessential. Rand had a very heavy accent and yet she made the best spokes person for freedom and American values ~ ever ~.

Edited by ~Sophia~

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I'm sorry, but I've seen Yarron speak years ago, and just watched some of his more recent youtube vids, and in neither case did he talk like Daffy Duck. Anyone know if he's had a minor stroke, or has developed a speech impediment? Maybe he was having a heat stroke from the bright lights? Although Yarron is justifiably a solid intellectual spokesperson for the movment, aesthetically even a good looking robot-girl in isn't as offputting as was his presentation. For me it was just too distracting to continue to watch.

I recently emailed Dr. Peikoff about his side profile on his new transitioning web banner, as he looks like Alexander the Great on the side of a coin. I suggested that he use the format already established, and create a graphic showing him giving a passionate lecture, or in various historical scenes with Ayn Rand or others. I said that might be less offputting than the side of his head. (He has admitted several times in the past that the camera doesn't do him justice) Of course I've not received any reply so far, but I'm not current on the podcasts.

If the movement is to be taken seriously, then its organizers need to take the basic elements of presentation seriously. I learned this in business school, and working in visual communications, and doing most of my own PR & marketing work. Ayn had a fantastic sense of aesthetically gripping presentation, and if the current torchbearers had even half her ability...

<*>aj

I think a lot of these things get back to personal tastes and you simply won't be able to please everybody. If you are looking for the perfect human being to be spokesman, that will be hard to find. Yaron has a ton of great qualities that make him good at what he does.

Regarding Yaron's speech. I don't know if it's a speech impediment or the fact that he is Israeli that causes him trouble with certain sounds. Netanyahu is great at speaking English and he is obviously Israeli. In fact, Netanyahu has a great speaking voice, period.

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If it was affecting what is being communicated but I have never had a problem understanding Dr. Brook's meaning. I enjoy his accent (I wish mine was closer to that) and mode of presentation. I find all the reasons you listed, considering what we are trying to achieve and how good Dr. Brook is at it, as inessential. Rand had a very heavy accent and yet she made the best spokes person for freedom and American values ~ ever ~.

Sure, they're not essential, but they're not trivial either. I really enjoyed Yaron's lecture series on The Corporation (or, as he says it, "The Cowrpohration", but there's a big gulf between an effective speaker and one who is *really* enjoyable to hear. In an informal setting like PajamasTV Yaron is a lot of fun. I'm not sure he's good for this type of public service announcement.

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Sure, they're not essential, but they're not trivial either. I really enjoyed Yaron's lecture series on The Corporation (or, as he says it, "The Cowrpohration", but there's a big gulf between an effective speaker and one who is *really* enjoyable to hear. In an informal setting like PajamasTV Yaron is a lot of fun. I'm not sure he's good for this type of public service announcement.

I guess I've been privileged to have good examples. I used to do electronics testing work that once I got things sorted out, was mind numbingly repetitive. I got a walkman and used to listen to books on tape. Because I listened to a lot of different readers, I had at that time at least thirteen library cards.

Some of the best readers were:

Edward Woodward

Julie Christie (I think, whoever read West with the Night)

John LeCarre reading his own works has, to quote one of his characters, "the minah bird's ear".

Captain Picard (darned if I can remember his real name right now)

Basically anyone with a background in stagework and even better if shakespearean...

<*>aj

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