My Five #23

Five things worth sharing from the last week (or so), including Photoshop Touch, crowdfunded film making and web privacy.

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My Five: Five things worth sharing from the last week (or so), brought to you by a different member of the Browser Media team every Friday.

This week’s My Five is by Tom W.

1. Adobe launches Photoshop Touch for iPhone

Adobe has rolled out an iPhone app for its legendary photo manipulation software. Entitled Photoshop Touch, the app is available for £2.99, and was previously only available for iPad.

The app includes all the same features as the iPad version, too – basically a stripped down edition of Photoshop for desktops.

This begs the question, if nothing has changed why didn’t they make the app universal? Seems like Adobe just wants to grab a cheeky extra £2.99 from people before letting them touch up their work on the go.

2. Using social networking to make films

One in ten people on death row in the US are exonerated for their crimes. One For Ten is a series of documentary films telling the stories of ten people who were wrongly imprisoned and faced the end of their life on death row.

The films “aim to be an interactive documentary series by using social networking, user generated content and a strong media and charity coalition to allow others to be as involved as possible.”

They will be shot one day, edited the next and then uploaded online for viewers to comment, criticise and contribute. The filmmakers are raising part of their budget through crowdfunding site Indiegogo, making sure the social audience is involved from an early stage.

3. Crowd-funded film wins Oscar

Speaking of crowdfunding, the short documentary Inocente became the first Kickstarter-funded project to win an Academy Award. The film tells the story of the homeless fifteen-year-old girl, Inocente pursuing her dream to become an artist.

The project raised $52,527 from 294 backers between June and July 2012.

The money helped the directors finish the project and market it extensively. They said: “We were kind of three-quarters done with the film, and we were trying to find more money to make the film, and we decided to do something with Kickstarter…It really helped galvanize the community and get the word out about the film, and it…kept us going basically through the post-production process

4. Google, Facebook and Twitter ordered to delete photos

Photo sharing is one of the biggest and most encouraged features of online life and social networking – but (unsurprisingly) not when it reveals the identity of child killers.

One of the two murderers of toddler James Bulger, John Venables, had his identity compromised recently as pictures of him as he appears now were released and spread online. After committing the murder in 1993 aged 10, Venables and his friend Robert Thompson were released from prison in 2001 with new identities.

Attorney general Dominic Grieve has threatened legal action against those uploading the pictures as it is a breach of the injunction protecting the killers’ identities. It’s no secret to how quickly information can be disseminated through the internet, so perhaps we can expect to see more heavy-handed attempts to enforce online law.

More here.

5. Facebook removes pages dedicated to Sandy Hook

Continuing the theme of ‘Social Networks Removing Morbid Murder-Related Content’, Facebook has taken down a bunch of pages dedicated to the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings last year. Apparently complaints were raised after some users were concerned the pages were spreading conspiracy theories.

A survivor of the shooting said that many of the posts suggested the shootings had been staged, and that one of the victims bore a resemblance to a “crisis actress.” Grim stuff, and it’s not the first time people have abused Facebook memorial pages. In 2010 Facebook tributes to two murdered Australian children were defaced by explicit pictures and insulting comments.

Facebook is continuously stressing its attempts to remove offensive content and improve privacy, but with over a billion active users there are bound to be a few instances that slip through the net.

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