The notion of parody has been an incredibly important thing. Not only is parody catchy with its quick connections and ties to the mainstream world, but anyone can create them. Parodies have been seen for years on television, which has given shows like MadTV or Saturday Night Live their names. However, YouTube has now given what used to be viewers, the chance to morph into creators.
This age of the parody in television in my mind was the marker for the transition out of TV and into the internet. Watching celebrities parody other celebrities had its time, but the new and true laugh is now coming from the average non-celebrity viewer, recreating and re-acting famous scenes with an often ironic or simply different message. The power in this ability for anyone to create parody symbolizes the movement and evolution of the medium. Interaction is now the basis in which users rate new technologies. Sitting on a couch and commentating witty remarks to yourself is a thing of the past.
Parody now can be argued as original material even with its obvious connections to copying, the context in which the skit is reenacted serves as giving the replicated images a new meaning making it of original thought. This tactic of guerilla media can be found prior to the creation of the internet with the anti-smoking campaign “The Truth Bubble” or “The Truth Campaign”, in which controversy in regards to copyright emerged when blank speech bubble stickers were handed out in magazines and by the campaign representatives, encouraging people to write a witty comment mocking the idea of smoking and then stick it on smoking ads. The high levels of participation of this campaign proved two things, people do have opinions which differ from the corporate messages being told, and that people very much so enjoy the ability to participate and in this interactive style of media message sharing. Giving people the opportunity to participate and interact with the media message is what makes up the tactic of guerilla media, and this interactive notion sparks more participation and more involvement than the standard one way communication of media messages like television. Although, in corporate eyes guerilla media is a bad thing for it allows for others to be exposed to criticism of their products and messages which can possibly lead to people disliking a particular brand or corporation’s thoughts, guerilla media is definitely the way of the future.
In the 2010 Oscars, French animators Francois Alaux and Herve de Crecy won best animated short film for the film Logorama. My and girlfriend and I went down to the Bytowne one evening to see all the nominees for the animated short films. Though there was tough competition in this category with classic animated film producers like the producers of another episode of Wallace and Gromit, the most laughs and reaction from the packed theatre definitely came from the screening of Logorama. The premise of the film is as a simple cops and robbers chase. However, the entire movie which took 5 years to make, is set in a world entirely made up corporate images and logos. From the MSN butterflies flying around the zoo of Lacoste alligators and Playboy bunnies, the entire film uses these iconic images to create satire and new meaning to their brands. Though this is a parody of epic proportions, it is still example of users recreating famous corporate images to send new meaning and messages of their own. The ability to manipulate and interact with messages (especially a message that was originally owned by a powerful empire) is why the internet is a such an evolved and powerful medium; for it allows the people’s abilities within that global village to evolve as well.