1) This first video is Neil Gaiman explaining why he isn't concerned about internet piracy. I completely agree. I know lots of authors and other types of artists that make their work available online for free that are still successful, such as Amanda Palmer, Richard Kadrey, and Cory Doctorow. I had never even heard of Richard Kadrey before his novel Butcher Bird was made available for free on BoingBoing.net. Now he's one of my favorite authors. I can say that many of the other authors I like came from friends lending me books they love. Even Monty Python experienced a huge jump in sales after they made their videos available for free online. Plus I think Neil Gaiman is brilliant. :)
2) Amanda Palmer has become much more prolific recently now that she has been dropped from her label. She no longer has to use them as a mediator to get music to her fans. Since then, she has put out 2 albums: Amanda Palmer Goes Down Under and Amanda Palmer Performs the Popular Hits of Radiohead on her Magical Ukulele. On the latter album, I'm completely obsessed with her cover of Fake Plastic Trees. Her rendition is completely stripped down and bare, making it her own. The tone is completely different from the Radiohead original. It's so honest and beautiful, it seems to come straight out of her soul.
3) I also found two very interesting horror shorts that are available to view online. The first is called The 3rd Letter, which I found on Bloody-Disgusting.com. It takes place in a futuristic world where people can no longer survive the poisonous and deteriorating climate and depend on biomechanical machinery to survive. It's similar to Repo the Genetic Opera, although much more serious. It isn't a perfect film, but has aspects we can appreciate with today's healthcare situation in the US and some great effects and visuals. If you like dystopian fiction or David Cronenberg's films, I would recommend this to you. It's only about 15 minutes long and can be viewed here. Unfortunately I can't embed it, but here's the trailer to pique your interest.
The second short I found on DeviantArt. I had never seen a film on the site and barely realized there were any. It was a feature for the day and the description drew my interest: "This is probably one of the most gruesome videos I've seen on dA." The film takes place in an elevator that is stuck with two guys and a woman inside. The scenes that follow are their efforts to escape and survive in the confined space. There is really no telling how long they spent in there, but the ending is priceless. Although it is a bit gruesome, there are aspects of the film that I have seen over and over in films like The Ruins and Devil. It's the ending that sets it apart as even better than all those typical movies, despite its length. The acting is really great. In a film that is only 5 minutes long, the unnamed characters undergo a series of changes that make them almost unrecognizable to the people they started out as. I loved it!
I wish films like these two could be the ones being released globally and making loads of money as opposed to the endless assembly line of bad remakes and tired sequels. Let me know what you think of these videos.