Irish Media Nationby John Lee
- "New York Paddy" Peter Quinn explores history and mystery of the trilogy (VIDEO)
- Tanaiste dives Into the Tweetstream with open-ended live Twitter chat in NYC
- Mutant ninja Irish dancers Fusion Fighters duel in video game
- Electronic pulse propels video love letter to Dublin (VIDEO)
- Ireland back on leader board with a 'Top Ten' ranking on the Global Innovation Index 2013 - VIDEO
This Tuesday evening, Nov. 19, the Irish Arts Center will feature a program called "History and Mystery: The Making of the Fintan Dunne Trilogy", featuring the series' author Peter Quinn with guests Dan Barry, Mary Tierney, Terry Golway, Honor Molloy, and swingstress Tara O'Grady.
Give credit to political leaders who agree to sit down for a live Twitter chat and face the untamed, wildly divergent questions and commentary coming their way from anyone who has picked up on the chat's hashtag.
Which in this case was #GilmoreInNY.
The "Gilmore" in question was Eamon Gilmore, the Irish Deputy Prime Minister, or Tanaiste in the Irish language, who is also the Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade. He was in New York, along with so many other globe-hopping government officials, for the opening of the UN General Assembly session.
Just when I thought it was safe, they're back, the Jedi warriors of funk-infused Irish step dance, a.k.a Fusion Fighters, integrating digital technology with percussive dance. And now they've turned on each other going head to head in a video game video.
It's the latest output from the cutting edge collective: a new YouTube video in the style of a motion sensor computer game in the mode of a "VS battle," which they released today as little teaser for their live performance style.
Fusion Fighters, a performance crew that fuses percussion based dance forms with a open-minded approach to the collaboration of music, comedy & technology is now hovering around London, where on St. Patrick’s Day in Trafalgar Square , they launched an interactive performance to over 15,000 people.
In another example of punching above its weight, Ireland has retained a "Top Ten" ranking on the Global Innovation Index 2013, a survey of 142 countries just released by the World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) and Cornell University.
The United States rejoined the five most-innovative nations and the United Kingdom moved up to the third spot while Switzerland retained its place atop the rankings. Singapore dropped from third in 2012 to eighth this year and Ireland did drop from ninth to tenth, the spot previously occupied by the US. However, GII 2013 organizers did say the shuffling of leader board was due more to changes in their own methodology than to changes in the countries' level of innovation.
The clip tees-off of some old black & white video of Rory as a boy chipping balls into the open door of his mother's washing machine, and then amps-up the challenge with some tricked-out domestic appliances arrayed over a golf driving range.
Both robo-golfer and Irish golfer get off some great shots, but the mechanized man gets off the best cracks.
YouTube video and online stories are calling "FORE!" about a new sport set to debut in May on the outskirts of Dublin called Footee, a mash-up of golf and soccer football, played on a golf course with a soccer ball and no more equipment than a pair of football shoes.
Or is it so new?
The Footee website calls the game " a competitive, skillful and addictive sports game that mixes the passion and strength of football with the elegance and tradition of golf."
The seventh most visited website in Ireland, Linkedin has over 200 million members in over 200 countries, over 2.6 million company pages and about two new members joining every second.
And it has Groups, lots of Groups, about 1.6 million online gatherings of people, usually with something professional in common where members share news, tips, links, questions and comments. Many groups are focused on a particular a country, or made up of people with ties to that country, such as Ireland and the Irish worldwide.
Over 215 million people today are considered migrants, 3.15 percent of a world population nudging seven billion, data beautifully visualized on a website called peoplemovin, which tracks on one dynamic page all the population outflows and inflows for every county on the planet.
So, naturally we turn first to Ireland, where one click traces the emigrations of 736,889 of Ireland's 4,622,917 people. For 422,569 the journey wasn't too far, just to the U.K. Another 137,537 Irish went to the USA, the world's top destination for world migration. Australia drew over 63,000 from Ireland, Canada just over 26,000. The rest of the top ten destinations from Ireland were in western Europe, plus New Zealand. But the Irish also found their way to new lives in Bolivia, Iceland, Japan, Turkey and so many other lands around the globe.
Click the icon on the parallel column of nations, however, to see that more people actually moved to Ireland--898,630, with almost 400,000 coming from the UK, over 93,000 from Poland, and just shy of 37,000 from the USA. The rest of that top ten list is completed by Lithuania, Nigeria, Latvia, Germany, China, Philippines and India. they were joined by people who had been living in Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Mongolia, Vietnam many more global outposts.
A lovely Christmas Day in NYC, clear, seasonably cold, but nary a snowflake in sight. But way too early, a couple of months ago, we got a dusting, and that was enough to send A lovely Christmas Day in NYC, clear, seasonably cold, but nary a snowflake in sight. But way too early, a couple of months ago, we got a dusting, and that was enough to send Sephira off into Central Park to improvise a quick video for "Sleigh Ride" from their holiday album Starlight.Irish sisters Ruth and Joyce O'Leary of Sephira recently posted the results of their fun & frolic in Central Park as a video Christmas card to fans and friends, and now I share it on to you. Merry Christmas...Nollaig shona duit!
Eighty years ago today, an intrepid photographer created the iconic image of eleven ironworkers, casually dangling their feet hundreds of feet above 5th Avenue while breaking for lunch on an exposed steel beam they had likely riveted into the framework of the rising 30 Rockefeller Center. Many, if not most, of these rugged individuals were almost certainly Irish Americans.
And despite the fact that the builders anticipated one laborer's death for every ten floors constructed, the men on the beam were happy to be high in the sky when about a third of their fellow citizens down below were out of work in Depression-era New York.
Irish Filmmaker Seán Ó Cualáin is among the many who have fallen under this picture's spell, investing much of his past five years exploring it in a nearly finished documentary. Last night at the Irish Consulate in New York, he screened a 75-minute version of "Men at Lunch," a beautifully crafted, meticulously researched, highly evocative work imbued with atmosphere and mystery.
Regular as the tides, another cultural acqua alta is washing over Venice now in the form of the Biennale Architetttura 2012. The theme this time is "Common Ground" and joining the many international firms exploring that theme in this cosmopolitan design petri dish are four from Ireland.
The country's official representative is the Dublin-based heneghan peng (no caps--it's a design thing), a firm already on global design map with such projects as bridge at the London Olympics, Giants Causeway Visitor Center in County Antrim, Northern Ireland and new museum at the Pyramids in Egypt.
"Shifting Ground" photos by Marie Louise Halpenny
Ed Shevlin is a man on the move. In his “9 to 5” he's behind the wheel of a garbage truck, cleaning-up after us as one on “New York's Cleanest.” His total immersion in all things Irish moved this high school dropout to an advanced study of the Irish language in its native land and to teach it when he returned home. He's a man moved by a good cause, and his grassroots work in the community and charities have earned him many awards and honors.
As Shevlin guides his truck through its Rockaway Beach route, his sights are set on another Rockaway Beach, a continent away in California. On September 22 he plans to get the motor running and head out on the highway on his Harley to that western Rockaway in a quest to raise funds for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation. He's using Facebook to publicize the trek and attract donations towards the $50,000 he hopes to raise for the JDRF.
The Atlas of Ingenious Ireland. Dedicated to "Putting Irish Science on the Map," it locates and annotates key science, tech and natural history landmarks.
While Irish eyes follow the official visit of Taoiseach Enda Kenny to China, a little gem of an Irish film has surfaced on YouTube tracing a more humble trip in the opposite direction.
Made ten years ago, but gaining viral traction now, Yu Ming Ainm Dom (or My Name Is Yu Ming) sketches in a scant 13 minutes the story of a bored Chinese clerk, who, with a leap of faith and a spin of the globe, sets his sights on Ireland, where his research tells him the language is Gaelic.
You see the work of illustrator Tim O'Brien on the covers of TIME, Rolling Stone, Esquire, Harper's, in advertising and on book jackets.
Thanks to one series of book jackets, an expanding universe of people are enjoying his art, especially starting today, opening day for the film, "The Hunger Games."
"The artwork for the Suzanne Collins novel, "The Hunger Games" was an illustration done in 2008. Since then I did all three covers for the series and now my artwork/design is featured on the movie poster and as a pin IN the movie "The Hunger Games," opening nationwide 3/23/12. It may be the biggest movie of the year and perhaps one of the largest openings ever.
"Seeing it plastered everywhere is amazing and after going to the premiere in Los Angeles and then the after party, I feel I might have just watched my career high point cruise by. Still basking in the glow though."
The sign at The Cell Theater entrance warns “TONIGHT’S PERFORMANCE OF ‘BLOOD’ AND ‘DANCING AT LUNACY’ CONTAINS THE SOUNDS OF GUNFIRE.”
Take that as a sign that there’ll be none of the season’s shamrock and leprechaun sentimentality, so brace yourself for a riveting duet of dramas on rebellious Ireland, each built around a trio of all-too-human, and in one case, quite inhuman, revolutionaries. “Blood” by rocking Renaissance man Larry Kirwan, conjures a likely scenario for a mystery of the history in the run-up to the 1916 Easter Rising, while the aptly named “Dancing at Lunacy” tells of a helter-skelter clash of IRA operatives in an illegal drinking club in Belfast of 1984.
“to aid and promote instant public recognition” a good logo can quickly communicate brand, image, backstory, aspirations and propaganda.
A new Irish logo is about to go prime time and you can help decide which of the four prototypes will become the official logo for Ireland’s European Union (EU) Presidency during the first six months of 2013
While economic storm clouds were joining all the other clouds that typically gather over Ireland, the government decided to increase the flow of its greatest export to its most significant market. Lacking much in the way of currently accessible oil reserves, rare earths, precious metals, athletic shoe factories or excessive amber waves of grain, the government placed a $5.2 million bet on something hard to quantify -- culture -- in an initiative called "Imagine Ireland, A Year of Irish Arts in America 2011," which is now drawing to a close with a flourish.
Guinness drinkers are putting down their pints and picking up their iPhones to post their praises for their favorite brew. Over the past year, Guinness got more shout-outs from social media users than any other beer, according to a new social media analytics report from Amplicate.
Curse you shimmering, trend-setting Frank Gehry designed museum in Bilbao. Curse you gorgeous seaside and mountains setting of Cape Town with your peppy BRICSA economy. Dublin is right back at you with its new Kevin Roche designed Convention Centre and so much more! Ireland has been pulling off a few upsets in international sporting competition (rugby, okay, but cricket?), and has already confound the odds by making the shortlist of three, along with Bilbao and Cape Town, for the international designation in 2014 of “World Design Capital,” an honor previously bestowed on Seoul and Torino and which will next go to Helsinki.
So quaint--itinerant artist pedaling through the Irish countryside, paying for a night’s lodging with a deftly done painting—all so very analog. But it’s digital that drives this clockwise, one-man, two-to-three month, slo-mo, 32-county, social media cycling and painting tour of Ireland.
You’ll be hard pressed to find a business more disrupted than media. While figuring out how to make a living in media may be a work in progress, there’s a relentless energy in media, a constant pushing, probing to bring stories into the light of day. Fortunately the Irish are very good at stories.
He came, he saw, he conquered? Obama, or O’Bama, captivated Moneygall, a youthful Dublin throng and most who watched it all on television or streamed online (thank you RTE!), and it’s no surprise he owned the front pages of Irish newspapers, including the Irish Times and the Irish Examiner, but to this stateside observer, U.S. media coverage was pretty light.
The internet lit up with rumors and tweets that the world’s last typewriter factory had closed. Though obituary now appears a bit premature, it's another reminder of how much the world of the writer is changing. Most writers ditched their typewriters years ago, but when it comes time to sell books, many are finding old media needs new media. Now once they write their books, they may need to write multimedia marketing campaigns…or they could just get booked on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart.
There’s a bit of YouTube to the 100-year-old film clips that emerged back in 1995 from barrels in English basement. They’re short, unscripted, a little rough around the edges, the stars were regular people and, in what would pass for 4G speed in 1900, they would be shot in the afternoon and screened that same evening. But unlike digital media, they weren’t supposed to live forever, given the unstable and highly flammable nature of the nitrate film stock.
As Cathal Dervan reported in his blog here on Irish Central yesterday, Nike is hanging its swoosh in shame after jumping the gun—and the shark--by making a high-end TV commercial celebrating the English team’s anticipated Grand Slam win in rugby’s Six Nations Championship. On Planet Earth, however, Ireland would actually crush England 24-8 to deny them the coveted Grand Slam.
Social media is a political power player, from the upheaval roiling the Arab world to an admittedly less dramatic but growing role in democratic power shifts. Ireland managed to channel its considerable political tensions peacefully into the just concluded general election, reported on, commented on, critiqued on Twitter under the hashtag #GE11 (standing for "General Election 2011." A hashtag is a shorthand Twitter label using the “#” character with an abbreviation or acronym that makes tweets on a particular topic easy to find and follow).
Search #GE11 on Twitter to find a steady stream of election reactions: thoughtful, inflammatory, partisan, hopeful, snarky and satirical. Here are just a few seconds worth of #GE11 tweets:
@owensdamien: Good day for Sinn Fein. Quite a few people will be rolling over in their unmarked graves #GE11
Plugged-in: study finds Irish, ages 13-19, are teenagers…as in typical teenagers, living much of their lives on-line. A recent study of the media habits of Irish teens show them communicating with friends by text messaging (56 percent) and by Facebook (38 percent) and with their parents by shrugs, scowls, eye-rolls and monosyllabic grunts (87 percent--not part of the study, pure conjecture on my part).
The Irish Digital Teen Survey was undertaken in November by Mulley Communications Ltd., an online marketing and PR consultancy based in Cork and Dublin that actively studies Irish digital space. You can download a pdf of the just released Irish Digital Teen Survey, but here are some highlights of their look at Irish teen media interaction:
· 14% have a part-time job
· 28% spend their money on socializing, 27% on phone credit
· Gig tickets and music is what teens buy most online
· Most teens use their parents credit card or laser to buy online
· Phone is the most treasured item of teens
· Teens are not downloading all their music for free
· Most music recommendations come via friends
· Nearly half of teens use the online TV players from media organizations with 40% streaming TV and over one-third watching via playback services
· 44% of teens are on Meteor (Irish cellphone/mobile digital provider)
· Nokia are the most popular phones, the iPhone is the most desired
· 74% access the Internet on their mobiles per month
· Communicating with friends: 56% via text message, 38% via Facebook, phone call 28%, email 27%
Looking back at the Irish digital media footprint in 2010, I’m stumbling across a few video nuggets gleamed from the relentless social media stream. As 2010 really put the “dismal” in the “dismal science” of economics, maybe these YouTube robots, teddy bears and cartoon characters make as much sense of the Irish economic situation as anyone else.
Xtranormal.com lets you script your own little film with professional looking animation and quirky computer-generated voices, for example these robo-pundits worrying that the Irish people will get very angry at the economic situation…once the popular TV talent show “The X-Factor” wraps-up for the season.
Ireland is world news hotspot for all the wrong reasons. Traditional media from around the globe is declaiming on the dire economic situation, backed by a Greek chorus of social media chatter. A new Twitter hashtag, #positiveireland, has surfaced, attracting a real time digital stream of good Irish economic news to counter the prevailing Celtic doom, gloom and ire (represented the video surging on YouTube linked to below). Here's a sample of what they're tweeting with the #positiveireland hashtag:
At Yahoo! Answers, people ask and answer questions online on a wide and sometimes wacky range of topics. Recent internet queries include:
After reading here on “IrishCentral” of a government response to Ireland’s financial crisis that involves cheese (though probably better cheese the US distributed in a similarly under-whelming economic response back in late 1980s and early 90s), I was relieved to surf to this slick, snazzy YouTube-hosted PowerPoint creation of the Irish Business and Employers Confederation (IBEC) which powered past doom and gloom to put a positive spin on “Ireland by the Numbers.”
But who was she talking too? And oh, those roaming charges! Belfast filmmaker George Clarke is a big Charlie Chaplin fan and as he studied newsreel footage shot outside of Grauman's Chinese Theater at the opening of Chaplin’s 1928 film “The Circus,” he saw something he couldn’t explain. Showed it to 100 people. They couldn’t explain it either, but all agreed that it sure looks like a woman talking on a cell phone...82 years ago. Evidence of a time traveler? Here’s an excerpt of the YouTube clip he posted a few weeks ago.
With the long baseball season finally segueing into the playoffs, I was using the time between pitches, while the batter wanders around adjusting himself, to wander around online, and just as the batter stepped back out of the box to start the adjustment process all over again, I surfed onto this internet factoid: “Baseball was probably derived from Rounders, a game played in Ireland since the fifteenth century.” I hate to admit it, but this was news to me…but not of course to the GAA.
This revelation came from a HuffingtonPost.com slideshow entitled “US History: 13 Myth-Busting Facts That Will Make You Rethink Everything You Know,” written by three guys from the endlessly diverting Mental Floss website (http://www.mentalfloss.com/). Myth #5 was “Baseball is Distinctly American” (http://huff.to/92Bz97). The post noted that by the 18th century, the Irish game of Rounders (Irish: cluiche corr) incorporated many of the basic elements of modern baseball and that starting in the 1820s Irish immigrants brought Rounders to America “where local variations developed.”