Suprise!

Information and Communication

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Zuppa de Clams (Clam Soup) and Salad

I don’t want to beat a dead horse … ok, maybe I do. There were changes made to the JTV interface today and broadcasters and viewers alike are buzzing about it. I was out most of the day and didn’t notice when the changes happened, but when I tuned in I was surprised to see the major change to the Channel Bar. There is much more real estate now for icons, but the reason for this is that the icon boxes are probably about 1/2 the size. It’s tough to make most of them out. When you hover your cursor over an icon the channel name still appears which is great. That way we can confirm what the channel is. What I’d like to see is the viewer count. I don’t know why, it’s just something that interests me and if it’s supplied there, I don’t have to enter a channel to see the count.

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Change happens. I’ve written about that in the past. There’s no use complaining about it. It’s best to just acknowledge, adjust and adapt. But … it’s fun and interesting to share opinions about change when it’s controversial. I have changed the icon for my channel in an attempt to make it stand out. Thanks to Anthony Quintano who offered to make the change for me, it was done quickly and I think it displays the Justopia.com brand — as it stands now … a simple chef’s hat, thanks to Lorenzo72.

It would have been great if we had been made aware of the changes with a little notice so that we could have been prepared for any changes we might have wanted to make.

Traveling Broadcasters

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I wonder how long it might take before Justin and team tire of Alan. He’s a bit louder and faster moving than the fratboys and from what little I’ve seen of this visit tonight, he asks a lot of questions.  The bright spot was hearing Justin and Emmett live again for at least a few minutes.  The quality of the broadcast was pretty miserable.  The broadcast was choppy and going in and out and it took me just a few minutes before I got bored and frustrated and moved on.

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I was disappointed because I wanted to turn back the clock and have a meal with Justin and the guys, but I just couldn’t hang in there.  Maybe we’ll get another chance tomorrow.

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Shopping in the New World, A Comment About the Comments

Would Marco Polo Ever Have Envisioned This?!

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A new channel popped up while I was looking around the channel bar after work this evening and it was one that really piqued my interest! It’s a shopping channel in which the shoppers are 10000 miles away showing the virtual customer the merchandise via live video. How much better can it get? Well, I could be in Shanghai shopping for myself, but if I can’t, this is the way to do it! I just wish I had thought of this!!!! I spent my expatriate years overseas shopping until I had no more room in my house back in the US. I could have been an incredible personal shopper. What a life. Researching goods at merchants around the world while spending other people’s money and broadcasting it. FUN! I will be watching this channel often.

No Harm, No Foul,
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Spaghetti and Meatballs, Salad with Raspberry Dressing and Garlic Bread

It’s interesting how conversations online can be misunderstood, misconstrued, misinterpreted, misjudged, misguided, and more. Just like a childhood game of telephone. I’ve seen it happen countless times. A person makes a comment, takes some kind of action without the context and before anyone realizes it, war has broken out and often, people are labeled without any true understanding of the situation.

Yesterday’s post is a case in point and I’d like to put the issue to rest before we blow up into blog comment wars.

I was in Babygurl’s room that night because I was tired, channel hopping to see what was going on in the network, looking for writing inspiration and landed in her room for a little while. As I’d written, I have never spoken up in her room in the past, I actually have not stopped into her room more than a handful of times. It pains me to see Babygurl struggle with the ugly that populates the internet and finds its way to her room so I just stay out and let Baby and her mods deal with what goes on in there. What I do find interesting about Babygurl is that she is sharp. Sharp in a different way then you and I may define the word, but to me, she more often than not seems to be on top of what is going on.

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I wasn’t concerned about it. I wasn’t upset about it. I wasn’t bothered by it in any way. It was my bad. Moderating chat is not easy. I’ve commented on the subject too many times to count in the 205 posts I have made to this blog and stand by what I’ve said about how chat moderation is subject to so much opinion and interpretation and how this makes it tough to manage with 100% objectivity. In my opinion, the only way to achieve total objectivity in chat moderation is to build reporting tools to verify and to develop black and white rules and then stand by them. Doing this would put JTV in a whole different realm of community. It would be like the Kids Only rooms on AOL. For good reason those rooms are the only ones still heavily moderated and the “take no prisoners” attitude still exists, as it should.

But Babygurl’s room is not a kid’s room. As a matter of fact, it’s flagged for mature content. I assume mostly due to language. She’s got rules, just like other rooms, including mine have rules and one of those is that dropping links into chat is not permitted. We all have our reasons. I don’t question Babygurl’s, but I did drop a link in without thinking. In the Momscashblog channel her rule is no links unless you spell them out — i.e. justopia dot wordpress dot com. This way it prevents the miscreants that come in with nefarious links from catching unsuspecting clickers off guard.

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Falafel on Pita

So, while it may have seemed harsh, no links is the “law” in Babygurl’s room and I am not inclined to take the Fawn Hall stance that “sometimes you just have to go above the written law.” No, I needed no Brendan Sullivan seated next to a potted plant to help me worm my way out of this one. I got my due. In any other room, in any other circumstance I may have made a stink about it, but Babygurl seems to have fun here and I was, whether intentionally or not, out of line and she had every right to give me a swift kick in the pants.

It’s not rocket science, it’s not brain surgery, it’s not air traffic control. So all that said … Cindy, I truly appreciate your concern and Son of Sam, I “hear” what you are saying as well. It’s still the early days at JTV and this just seems to be another one of those “learning moments,” in lifecasting history.

Now, can’t we all just get along? Please

Monkeying Around and a Swift Kick in the Pants

Entertaining

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Justin aka iMonkeyboy was nesting — setting up his bed for the night, or so it seemed

It’s another tough night on JTV. There is nothing interesting to watch. Where is everyone? It seems like people took an extended Thanksgiving holiday vacation and an extended breather from JTV watching and lifecasting.

So … I did a little channel hopping after my broadcast tonight in search of something to grab my attention and to keep me entertained and I have found myself being entertained by a monkey. A 7 year old Capuchin monkey that anyone can watch here on the My Life as a Monkey channel. Right now, at 1:21 in the morning (Eastern) there are 25 of us watching a monkey as he tries to find his way out of a blanket. His name is Justin and his profile says he also goes by iMonkeyboy.

I’m wondering … did Justin Kan know about Justin the Capuchin monkey and decide to give the business the monkey brand? A question to ponder.

To the Corner with You!

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Babygurl’s room after the kicking

I needed something to write about and I was struggling once again until suddenly, without warning, inspiration fell into my lap! And thank goodness for that. Justin the monkey was fun and all, but not worth more than 153 words, now this might have me clacking away at the keyboard for a long time, perhaps until the sun rises. Ok, maybe not. I am far too tired and the subject is not really that interesting and as funny as the whole incident is, I have made a point of not exploiting the challenges another lifecaster may have, but tonight I will make an exception.

So there I was, looking for something to entertain me. I was clicking my way through the Channel Bar and popping in and out of rooms to see if there was anything at all of interest when I clicked on Living with Parents’ room. Babygurl was in fine form, singing away, entertaining her loyal viewers. I have lurked in her room in the past, but have never uttered a word, really having nothing interesting to contribute. Tonight I spotted a number of Justopia.com regulars and decided to stick my head up out of the ground to say hello. We exchanged niceties, listened to Babygurl sing, swear, and laugh all the while carrying on conversations about things along with and other than Babygurl.

We talked about the new Lifecasting documentary site and someone asked for the channel name. Without thinking, without hesitation, I typed it into the room, totally oblivious and forgetting that it would create a hyperlink! Well, Babygurl took a breath from singing and immediately proceeded to send me to the corner.

Some of my JTV friends ran to my defense, but it was too late. Babygurl seemed genuinely disappointed that she “had” to kick me and truthfully, of the 3 kicks I have experienced in my almost 8 months here, it just plain didn’t bother me. I had pretty much had enough time in the room and was about to head out anyway, but this helped me break away sooner. Not only that, but it made me laugh and I had not had a giggle on the site all night.

Mistakes happen. We all make them. Each channel owner has their own rules and I share the “no links” rule in my room so it was reasonable. What is tough to handle is the way in which the message is communicated — as though we are elementary school students, but again, I don’t want to have that conversation about this channel, so I will leave it at that. I got kicked, if I had wanted to I could have come back and participated in chat again just 10 minutes after the kick, but there was no need. I really had nothing more to say. We had been talking about how I need to either be mad or sad in order to find the inspiration to write, and while this is not wildly exciting, it did the trick, so I didn’t need to hang out in the channel any longer, or frankly, on JTV any longer as well.

Besides, I’ve got far more important things to do and in this order:

  1. Spend my Amex Rewards points before canceling the card
  2. Finish up in the kitchen
  3. Track order of items that I am anxiously awaiting to help me add to the Food Challenge Trivia database
  4. Work on Blurb.com’s blog to book creation application
  5. Work on a plan to expand the Justopian Life blog site
  6. SLEEP!

Same old, Same Old

Sunday Night

It’s another Sunday night in JTV-land and I’ve had a tough time finding anything worthile to write about.  I am dog-tired, so I thought I would take a night off from blogging.  I’ll be back tomorrow night and will hopefully have something interesting to write about!

The Day After the Day After Thanksgiving

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It’s another weekend at JTV and once again, nothing interesting is going on.  Well, I take that back.  I dropped in this morning and Antinormal Comics was on drawing, so I sat down and watched for a while.  He was working hard and the folks in his room were happy to be watching.  He was working on a very detailed one for a new viewer when I came in and the recipient seemed to be very pleased.  I am sure these reactions make Spork feel great, and he should.  He does great work.

I didn’t find anything else to watch so I went on my way and headed off to work.  It was very busy at times and right now my feet have had it.  I did not broadcast tonight since I worked late and am going to head off to bed at now, a non-JTV hour and take a perusal through a cookbook or two to determine what I want to make for dinner tomorrow for the broadcast, then read a book and go to sleep.  It sounds like true luxury.

Black Friday — Retail Style, Another Look at the Highlights Awards, Food and a Lifecasting Documentary?

The Almighty Dollar

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Bife de Chrizo, Ensalada Completa and Empanadas de queso — An Argentine Dinner

I seem to have missed something. Although I have been in the US for 3 of the past 9 holiday seasons, I think the repatriation or acclimating to life in the US at about the time the holidays rolled around each those years overshadowed the actual holiday happenings and I missed the hype about the Friday after Thanksgiving. I mean don’t get me wrong, I know that the Friday after T-Day is the biggest retail day of the year and that there is now competition with Christmas Eve when it comes to top revenue generating day, but I am overwhelmed by the amount of Holiday commercials that I am being bombarded with and I barely ever watch TV anymore. This is all coming from about 60 minutes of TV viewing in the morning today. It was all shopping this, shopping that, shopping, shopping shopping shopping. I am watching FoodTV right now and it’s the same. Ahh! And that is just the first day after Thanksgiving. I sure am glad we don’t have advertising on JTV!

The good news … I made it through my first Black Friday working in retail! My feet are throbbing, but all in all, it was much better than I expected! We’ll see how tomorrow and beyond go.

All For Naught

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Split Pea Soup

I wonder what the deal is with the Broadcaster Highlight Awards? It has become a big joke at this point. The drama it caused when the voting phase began was out of control and it lingered on for days. The voting/results had to be restarted one or two times because of fraudulent voting and anticipation grew. And then on announcement day — nothing. And still nothing other than the message being edited to mention nothing about the end of the contest. No one is talking about it any longer — other than what I saw in Arnaud‘s room last night. He was trying hard to get votes for the highlight of his dancing and he had a lot of viewers and the room was racing. People were promoting the voting and when Arnaud refreshed his page to see how things were going, he appeared frustrated to see that there was absolutely no movement in the numbers. It looks like the voting may be locked down, but who knows. It has become inconsequential.

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Stuffed Mushrooms

But at the end, I wonder if the Fratboys realize how important follow-through is? I wonder if maybe it was a communication thing. If they decided to change the date for the conclusion of the contest and the right hand didn’t let the left hand know what was going on. The problem is that it’s a little like crying wolf. The next time people just may not pay any attention.

Holidays

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To Die For Pumpkin Cheesecake!

It’s time to think about holiday cooking events. First we wil have a Hannukah dinner. The first night is December 3rd. We’ll do Potato Latkes (potato pancakes) for sure and I will create a menu to go with it.

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Coconut Chili Shrimp, Asian Udon and Soba Noodles

Then we need to think about doing a cookie show and perhaps a round of trivia in which cookies play a part. We will also need to discuss a Christmas menu. I don’t know if I will have a dinner invite, but we should work on a menu and a broadcast in which I cook up the entire menu. That would best be done with company again. I’ll see about getting some guests to join me.

Is it Time?

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I was about to go to bed when I looked up at the Channel Bar and noticed an interesting icon that caused me to click. The feed was not great. Well, the video was ok, but the audio was unbearable. They were on a San Francisco bus and it made the audio unbearable. It was all static. The channel, called Lifecasting Documentary doesn’t have much background info yet, but I hung out long enough to see the guys behind the camera chat about what they were doing — at least a little bit.  Apparently their broadcasting set up has been funded by JTV — 360. 1:59 mcdrunky: we are working with justin.tv . they are the ones who gave us the laptop, camera, backpack, evdo card… and they’re paying the monthly bill for the wireless.  Nice.  Hopefully the return on the investment will be worthwhile.

They plan to interview lifecasters and to profile lifecasting,  “going back to the history of casting all they way back to ana voog in the 90’s.”  I don’t know who Ana Voog is — I guess I’ll do some research.

It will be interesting to watch if they complete the documentary.  I’ll be watching them as they progress.

Celebration or Cause for Concern and Black Friday

I hope everyone had a happy and restful Thanksgiving.  Now … let the shopping begin!

Milestone

Today marks the 200th post to Living the Justopian Life. While it’s very gratifying in some sense, it is extremely disturbing in another.

Since April 27th, I have posted every day with less than a handful of exceptions. That means that I have published a post for almost every one of the 209 days since I started this crazy viewing, participating and writing adventure in my Justin.tv life. I have not calculated the entire word count, but looking at just May is filled with over 28,000 words and in total, the blog has over 800 photos posted to it. Now that is a lot of words and photos and images. But with an estimate of 190,000 words to date, it is a far cry from War and Peace which weighs in at 560,000 words and 1456 pages. With the epic novel averaging 110,000 words, Living the Justopian Life really does seem to be larger than epic and without photos, the book would be about 800 pages at this moment.

And this is where the concern comes in. How much of my life have I lost spending days and nights following JTV and the people broadcasting? If I had not been here for over 200 days, what would my life look like right now? Would I be gainfully employed? Would I look less pasty? Would I have more of a sparkle in my eyes? Would I have something to talk about with my friends other than Justin this and Justin that?

The question is: at what point do I stop? Channels on JTV are quickly losing their luster. It is beyond boring tonight. I have tried to find something of interest, but it just isn’t happening, so I watched a few episodes of television shows I had recorded and worked on trivia questions for the broadcast and did some other research.

I am hoping to find some good inspiration that will kick-start me into writing thought-provoking and interesting posts again. It’s been a bit tough since the JTV network opened to the general public.

Let the Shopping Begin

Tomorrow is the day I’ve been dreading. I can not begin to imagine what the store and the shopping center will be like when I get there for work tomorrow afternoon. I will keep my eye on it from my balcony before I head over, but I can guarantee tomorrow won’t be one of those stress-free days for me. I just hope I can hold up to it. I’d love to take my camera in and shoot some video. Now THAT would be good JTV viewing!

In the meantime, I will try to put on my best smile and go with the flow. Maybe — just maybe if I can make it through tomorrow, I can make it all the way to the end of the season. It remains to be seen!

But for now, I am going to do something novel — get to bed before 1:30am!!!!!!!!!! It has been many months and I am in great need of a good night’s sleep.