Research Critique – Videofreex

As I sat back and watched the one hour documentary, I was furiously penning down the thoughts I had as the segments played. The video was no doubt a documentary of a ground-breaking moment in history for television, video or media in general. I also found it weird that i’ve not came across this study as a mass communication student back in poly.

For the first half of it, I initially thought the whole movement by Videofreex could be summarised with the word ‘unregulated’. As I watched on and reiterated my thoughts, I came to a conclusion that it’s more than a basic level of  just broadcasting unregulated content.

There were a few levels in this media movement. This was the process that I thought was happening

> Unregulated content is broadcasted

> Boundaries surpassed (opening new ways of broadcasting content)

> Opens up different perspectives > challenges audience’s thought about content shown in the media

> social/political effects (change of views, different means of media distrbution (current day technology) etc.)

I’ll summarise the points that I felt Videofreex has created the most impact on

Breaking boundaries

Firstly, this whole movement by the Videofreex was more than just generating unregulated content  – it was a media movement that surpassed boundaries by opening up a whole new world of possibilities in the world of media broadcasting. It has proven the possibility of distributing content that was personal and in its rawest form.

A member of Videofreex mentioned,

“On TV, you see everything except what is happening around you”.

Things changed with this movement – they managed to bring everyday content to the masses which was the harbinger of social media sharing today. What could our social media timeline look like if sharing of personal videos or daily lives weren’t possible? Or even on any broadcast channels?

If the Videofreex did not step over this boundary, I presume the world today to be more oppressed. Basically of people taking in regulated media content passively and believing things at it is. Based on their society or culture, some would tend to yearn for more daily-life and personal content while others will passively take in the information as seen through their screens.


As mentioned, this entire movement brought about new possibilities – one of which is the level of engagement with its audience. It broke the walls of having a one-to-many audience and stepping it up to a many-to-many audience. During their ‘live’ broadcasts, audiences were encouraged to call in, which opened up a gateway of communication between the broadcaster and its audience. This paradigm shift is formidably interesting in the 1960s/70s context as the stage was not solely on the broadcaster’s side but a new platform, The Third Space is formed. The audience are also part of the act and from there, more possibilities can happen from here.

What I like about their broadcasted videos:

A Sense of Intimacy with the events

A member of the videofreex mentioned,

“TV stations weren’t marching in the women’s march. We were the ones marching together in it”

There was a sense of intimacy in their pieces and in fact, I strongly feel this is what audiences want. It feels personal and makes the source more credible. There’s a sense of allure in honest content and personal accounts of events as opposed to a scripted piece of reportage.

Therefore, in our current day context, we see personal accounts of an incident/accident of Facebook which gathers more attention and credibility than a post from a news broadcaster. Similarly, we are more drawn to these unregulated posts as it shows us full content and details which might’ve been left out in regulated posts.

What they might’ve negatively impacted (through its possibilities in distribution) 

Opening up the possibility of distributing and sharing any content that we want has its drawbacks, which is seen in our society today. For social media sharing, people get too casual in posting certain media and it goes through without being regulated (unless reported).

For example, I’ve scrolled through real content of beheading, suicide and accident videos and other forms of content that should be censored. It might be good that certain things blocked by mainstream media have surfaced online in favour of the public, but certain content has to be watched. All the more, if it happens during a ‘live’ broadcast, there is no way to edit the ‘boo-boos’ and certain parties have to be responsible for it.


In summary..

The documentary has provoked many thoughts about media sharing, namely the paradigm shift of traditional media broadcasting to the possibility of portable video filming and sharing personal content on the go that we have today.

And indeed, we are bombarded by information everywhere through the media but is each piece credible? As a leaving note for this post, I’ll post a question to ourselves: Are we a thinker or a believer?





Alter ego: Music Artist

I aspire to be a Music artist and drive fast cars. But there's a glitch in this reality. This is for a school assignment so bear with me please!

Posted by Val Lay on Wednesday, 23 August 2017

‘I aspire to be a music artist – but there’s a glitch in this reality’ – Val Lay, 2017

Have you guys heard of Coachella? One of the biggest (used to be indie) music festivals of all time. I’ve always wanted to be there, not just a music lover or concert goer but as a performing act.

This is my alter ego.


The environment I used to portray my music studio is my living room. Props I used are musical instruments which are literally everywhere.

I own about 8 guitars, an electric drum kit, some ukuleles, and other random instruments. I am really an ardent music fan which not many might know, hence I thought this could be an alter ego to portray.



At the start of the video, I also performed a song for a few lines on the guitar. I initially wanted to smash the guitar (ive actually done it before) like how rockstars do it but I thought that was too ratchet for a one-minute assignment. This was simply spontaneous and I just sang the first song that came to my mind, which happens to be Chocolate by The 1975, a band that has performed at Coachella a couple of years back.

Suiting the look

There’s this certain Coachella style of dressing where concert goers and performers don, one of which is the bandana

Justin Bieber wearing it

Concert goer wearing it

You get it. Bandanas as hipster music artist prop to fit the look

How is video and social media used to alter identity? How might they be used to conceal identity?

As I read what Randall posted for us to think about, I realised these were the questions i’ve always thought about while scrolling through social media

I came to a conclusion: it’s all about being selective in choosing what you show to audience

aka all about the angles!!!!!!!!

As I was live, I was trying showing my audience how my living room looks like a music studio in the best that I can. Therefore, I panned to angles where the music instruments are.

However, as seen in this screenshot, you might’ve caught a glimpse of an untidy dining table. Which was not meant to be shown.

In other words, we very selectively choose to show what we want others to see. And this is done through angles in videos or other forms of images on social media

For example something like this – that happened somewhat close to us, at Clementi

Photo taken from

Exploring Glitch Art

In my caption, I phrased it as ‘I aspire to be a music artist but there’s a glitch in this reality’. This glitch was literal – seen with this filter used on purpose as well as how things are in reality.

I said I dream I could be a musician that made it big and drive fast cars but in reality, all I have is a one-seater posh car for kids 3 years and below. Hence, that was what I was trying to communicate, that glitch in reality


In summary, this micro-project made me think quite abit on how Youtubers or ‘Influencers’ mould and curate their content to only show others what they need to see. Which actually doesn’t make them come off as ‘real’ as i’d actually like them to be.

On a side note, friends have texted me or mentioned to me that this social broadcasting exercise was cool!

Although some really don’t get it. But yet they want to be part of such projects next time.

Can’t wait to create more content soon!

Ciao for now!

Val Lay out.

Real-time aggregation

This is part of module help

Posted by Val Lay on Thursday, 17 August 2017

Look ma, my first Facebook Live video!

Hey people! Nice seeing everyone back in school after a good break! It was just the first tutorial when Randall dropped a bomb on us that we had to go ‘LIVE’ on facebook. Not for just 1 or 2 minutes but 15 MINUTES

We were all like

Stage 1. The ‘Really? Do i have to?’

Most of us were visibly unwilling as the idea of going ‘live’ scared us. That meant being unable to EDIT, FILTER and make any adjustments if something cropped up and we just we plain unglamorous. I believe this is due to the highly curated social media feeds that we (millennials) have. The rawness scares us. Nonetheless, we live by ‘YOLO’ and whipped out our devices, took a deep breath as I thought ‘Here Goes Nothing’

Stage 2. Ok we live now

It read ‘You’re now live!’ on my screen. 1 view. 2 views. And then 3. You start ‘feelin it’ and address the people viewing as if you’re doing a skype video call. Easy, I thought. I started becoming comfortable as I didnt see faces or my viewers staring back at me, which weirdly makes me feel more at ease. Initially, I had no idea what to do in front of a live audience. Gradually, I started going with the flow and reacting to people and things like how I would. I was actually starting to enjoy it.

Stage 3. Friends running away

As I went around ADM, I saw a couple of friends where it was a natural tendency to frame them in your misc-en-scene too. When I chased them and shouted, ‘Facebook Live!’, it was also a natural tendency for them to avoid the camera or runaway from it.

The screenshot shows one friend accidentally tripping and hitting the door while trying to get away from the camera.

A junior is also seen here doing the typical of blocking the camera with their hands. It sparked a thought here, why do kids not do this when you flash a camera in their faces? At which point did we start to feel uncomfortable in front of a camera? Especially being on ‘live’?

Closing thoughts

 Cross-streaming and its Interesting perspectives

Throughout the live video, everyone was noticeably focused on what we were filming on our phones. It turned out pretty amusing to see the different perspectives of a same location when our videos were viewed collectively on screen. Certain angles of a same location or scenario can actually change how things appear on this third space, which we might not notice if we hadnt viewed all screens together.

The star of this ‘live’ video stream

So this pink llama appeared in almost everyone’s live stream. We were all probably amused by a random shocking pink stuffed toy on one of our tables. It replicates the idea of how each person can be interacting with a same object, but the different ways of doing it and perspective of it can be different in many ways. Also, before the live video, I was also playing with this llama with my friends and named him Kendrick. Shoutout out to ma people if ya got the reference

If not please refer to this meme


One thing that irked me was the incorrect format the video turned out. This was due to iPhone’s orientation lock which I forgot to toggle. Perhaps facebook’s User Interface team could provide a notification to tell its users that the format is incorrect. This was unknown throughout the whole live screening and it was disappointing to not have an aesthetic orientation.

Also, one thing I could do is to switch between the front and back camera for a better variety of views. Perhaps I should also keep my hand more stable and hold on certain frames to get a better composition.

In summary

As a whole, this was a fun run as everyone was as clueless as each other yet we still gave it a go. Indeed through this live video, we’re able to pick up some idiosyncrasies and behaviourals of our friends that we never knew! Looking forward to more sessions!