Concert Foul No. 14: Amateur Concert Videography

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In the words of the great, would-be time traveler Kip Dynamite: We "love technology."

And we do. Let's be honest: Music fans of today have it a bajillionty times better than the generation previous to this current, wireless point in time.

Blogs, mp3s, iTunes, Myspace, Facebook and even email blasts from our favorite bands have set up the modern music geek in such a luxurious fashion that future fanboys and fangirls of the next few decades will laugh with pity at the way we used to only be able to obtain music in a legal fashion. They'll be mystified that the only means there was was for stealing music was to grab a cassette and bolt out of Camelot Music's front door in the hope that the mall security would trip over a spilled Orange Julius sample before catching up with you.

Then, of course, there's YouTube. A plain fact here: YouTube is greatness and is arguably the single largest force of electrical nature in today's mouse-click world of convenience, Google and Facebook be damned. Aside from the videos that we all love to forward to friends and co-workers that have little to no relevance outside of providing a fleeting giggle, YouTube has also proven to be a weapon for those looking to commit Concert Fouls by the boat load.

Yes, Amateur Concert Videographer, this one's for you.

The Amateur Concert Videographer shares the same, outlandish trait that all other forms of Concert Foul offenders possess -- blatant and unapologetic inconsideration for their fellow concert goer.

Here's the rub, though: We kinda get it.

Who doesn't want a great clip of their favorite band playing their favorite song? In the pre-Internet age, one used to have to wait for an appearance on late-night television for that. Or maybe an awards show or -- if one was very lucky -- a live VHS release of a concert.

The end goal is understandable. Hell, it's likely shared by many at the show.

Things go wrong for the Amateur Concert Videographer when the Videographer just doesn't know when to quit. This is a very different -- and oftentimes much worse -- act than the offenses of the Multiple Picture Snapper.

The Snapper may take tons of pics, but typically, the camera goes up, blocking the person's view behind them for only a moment, then comes back down harmlessly, giving that person behind them their view of the stage back.

In this day and virtual age, it's tough to imagine there are any concertgoers out there who haven't been an innocent victim of this foul. When the Videographer's arms stretch over his or her head fully, with their camera or phone perched atop their supportive hands, they're officially telling anyone who's view is being blocked by their photography that their ticket and their concert experience is more valuable than everyone else's. It's not only an act of obliviousness; it's an act of extreme superiority. A packed, sold-out show will force a victim to awkwardly ask the Amateur Videographer to give their filming a rest, or to simply accept the fact that the spot they showed up early to get isn't quite as awesome as they first thought it was.

Perhaps the most heinous aspect of all of this is in the way that the video being shot will likely amount to little more than fuzzy, static-y blobs of light with sound to match. In the concert world, such an offense is equivalent to holding up the guard at Fort Knox with a AK-47, only to scamper away with the guard's plastic Swatch watch.

So, Amateur Concert Videographer, the next time you push the power button on your camera as you aim to shoot your favorite tune, just try to enjoy the mental picture that you'll be able to enjoy -- along with the people behind you, who will now be able to see the show as well.

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20 comments
wagFoo
wagFoo

Sounds to me like they might just be onto something there. That does indeed make a lot of sense.  being-anon.tk 

Peter Voth
Peter Voth

Also, what is the point of taking a video of a concert? These videos always look like complete shit, and you are missing the show while you are watching it on your tiny screen. Unless you have a good camera and a tripod, don't bother. I have never seen a concert video shot by an audience member that was worth watching.

Peter Voth
Peter Voth

Can we also discuss people who take flash photography at venues where you are too far away for your flash to have any effect? The stage is usually very well lit, so you don't need a flash anyway. If you can't disable your flash, put your finger over it. This is especially bad at comedy shows, plays, acrobatic shows, magic shows, or any show where a flash can throw off the performer's timing and distract the audience.

charlie
charlie

ehhhh, amateur ok.  youtube is the king of amateur video... yet its one of the king

a22face
a22face

rooked: finding live footage of favorite band online only to discover that the audio is unlistenable distortion. maybe just keep that footage to yerself, huh?

Bigdtxhorn
Bigdtxhorn

When is she going to report on the people who weasle in on your skief?  Bring your own shit.  No different than coming up and asking to share your beer.

Steve
Steve

If I can even see your phone, I'm beating the shit out of you.

ThreeOranges
ThreeOranges

 I'll usually record a song. I'm tall-ish and have a massive head, so it usually hides the camera well enough that I don't think I'm inconveniencing anyone else any more than I already am with my loathsome presence.

Yes, the video is usually horrible.

Please don't deprive me of my simple pleasures. They're all I have.

R VanWinkle
R VanWinkle

A-fucking-men Kelly, concert filmers suck. Does anybody ever go back and watch all these YouTube clips anyway? Such a pointless act.

MattL1
MattL1

I'll cop to snapping the occasional picture ("I was actually there!  I have proof!"), but the people who are shooting video of every damn song are annoying.  Is there really a point?  Can't you see that 30 other people are shooting the same thing?  Are your camera phone skills that much better than everyone else's?  

Rockula!
Rockula!

Agreed. Now, let's talk about the people who are taping the show from a spot that doesn't block people's view Please don't do the same predictable thing every douche inevitably does when they see someone taping a show1- We are taping the band and not you so keep your fucking ugly mug out of the shot Walking through the shot is acceptable, after all, it is a crowded public place (extra thanks to those who do the "crouching walk by" to avoid blocking the shot) but no one wants their viewing experience disturbed by some dick who wants to yell WAAZZZUP! directly into the camera2- Don't stand next to the camera operator and have a conversationNot only does it distract the operator but all of your dumbass comments are going right into the micYes, the band does ruleYes, you are their biggest fanYes, I just handed you a card with the web address where you can go to watch this recordingJust like no one wants to see your ugly face, they also don't want your voice interfering with the musicSo, keep your comments to yourself until the video gets posted on youtubeThen you can be all the Douche you can be

Noah W. Bailey
Noah W. Bailey

I read an article about some technology that will allow venues to disable your smartphone camera with a strobe. Can't. Fucking. Wait. 

quahog_convo
quahog_convo

So guilty. So unapologetically guilty. I don't even care if that's not a real word.

Will Dowdy
Will Dowdy

if yer using your phone to make a video, and if yer just standing in the audience doing it, the audio will suck and so will the footage.... just about every single time. if you want to take video of a band you should (a) get a decent camera with decent audio and video capabilities and (b) CHECK WITH THE BAND (often times the venues won't let you do it, but really.... check w/ the band, that's way more important) and (c) get there early and find a spot that gets you a good angle and keeps you out of the way... you could also invest in a tripod or some way to mount it out of the way of everybody.. and then you won't be the jerk holding the camera. only the one checking the batteries in between bands.

Kelly D.
Kelly D.

OK, admittedly it's an understandable error, given the ambiguity of my name, but I'm a dude-Kelly. No harm, no foul. 

As for when I'll report on the Foul scenario you offer? Probably never. I'll leave that up to my herb-friendly writer compadres here at the Observer to handle, but it's a good suggestion, none the less.

Queenpish
Queenpish

I usually just shoot one video during a show, and yes, I go back and watch them from time to time. The good ones anyway. But the person who records EVERY song annoys the crap outta me.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

mynameisURL
mynameisURL

Nearly as irritating as "Amateur Concert Documentarian" guy!

ThreeOranges
ThreeOranges

Just for that, I'm gonna punch your butt.

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