Class 03: “Jack and Bing”

Good afternoon! We have a lot to do today, and most of the logistical business and lessons are on the “Chalkboard.” There’s a lot to cover with today’s episode, and I’m playing around with putting it here. Here’s the plan for our discussion of Mixtape:

Review: Tuesday, we listened, annotated, and discussed “Dakou.” We’ll start by recalling to ourselves, first in our notebooks and then out loud, how this episode supports Simon Adler’s assertion that ours is “a cassette world.” How did “Dakou” answer the question you’ll have to tackle soon, namely: What is “a cassette world” and are we living in it?  

Discussion: For today, you read “Jack and Bing,” which is less a buddy movie and more a study in contrasts about what to do with a “deceptively huge shift” in the production of radio and later all broadcast media. What are your overall reactions to this text? How does it answer the question that “Dakou” attempted? What new questions emerge from your reading? 

Activity: In groups of three or four, respond to one of the dozen or so annotations I’ve left in the transcript of today’s episode of Mixtape. Some places to start:

  1. Another opening anecdote about technology. What are your ‘first’ device stories?
  2. Bing’s “work-life balance.” Compare/contrast the public and private versions of Bing?
  3. Celebrities and privacy. Does/must fame/influence “cost” the loss of privacy?
  4. Live vs. taped performance: What’s “magic” about live performance? About recording?
  5. Ethics & editing: When is it “wrong” to edit tape, and what makes it that way?
  • Independent Work: Reread or (at home) re-listen to the passage at the very end, where Simon Adler argues that with every social media window we open, we’re “torn between Jack and Bing.” What does he mean by this? Do you agree or disagree with him? What’s your response to the claim one of you astutely made: “it is very easy to get caught up in wanting to portray a false reality for the outside world and that is very detrimental to who we are as people and as a society.” What do we do with ‘false’ reality? When do we produce it ourselves, Why? What are the ethics around it? Why do we do it, even if it is “very detrimental”? Or is it actually harmless, in the grand scheme of things?
  • Please brainstorm, draft, and edit your reply in a paragraph or two. Publish it using; if is not working super well, post your thoughts as a reply to this blog post. If neither of them are working, you can post it to the Discussion Board’s “Mixtape Open Forum”–but see me to work out these technology issues.