Jan 11, 2011
[UPDATE - New details have been announced ! To take part in Dynamic Range Day 2011, click here]
But before we get too far along, I want to take a moment to reflect and ask – was last year’s Dynamic Range Day a success ? How can we make this year’s even better ?
Some achievements from Dynamic Range Day 2010
- Over 2,900 people “attended” the Facebook event and another 6000 were invited
- Over 35 blogs posted about it – that I know about, maybe more – all talking about the event and the issues
- A massive stream of posts flooded Twitter on both Friday and Saturday night, full of links and comments – which nevertheless somehow mysteriously failed to “trend”
- I saw a huge spike in hits to posts on my sites discussing dynamic range, compression and the Loudness Wars, and many new forum posts discussing the topic
- I’ve even been asked to support a new academic research program about the Loudness Wars
All of which is pretty good for something that came together in little over a month !
This year though, I want it to be better, and I need your help. The one thing Dynamic Range Day didn’t manage to do was “go viral” in any real way. This year I would love it to spill out beyond our community of audio-loving musicians and engineers, and get noticed by “everyone else” – people who perhaps have never thought about these issues before.
How can we make it better ?
Why didn’t we achieve that last year ? Well, I think that the central idea – “SHOUT OUT against the loudness wars” – was fun to do and a good “in joke” if you already understand the issues, but viewed from the outside was just – well, annoying, to be honest !
Just imagine if your Twitter stream was suddenly and without warning FLOODED WITH PEOPLE TYPING IN ALL CAPS ABOUT A SUBJECT YOU DON’T KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT – if you’re anything like me, you wouldn’t even bother to read them, let alone click through to read a link or join in.
It wasn’t all bad – it allowed us all to blow off some steam and it caught the imagination of everyone who took part, but even I was pretty fed up with it by the end !
Intrigue and invite
This year I think we need a better idea – something inclusive, something fun, something that will draw other people in to take part and get involved.
And, I’d love to hear your ideas ! I have some thoughts, but it would be great to get a discussion going in the comments here to see what we can all come up with together.
I’m going to be asking for your help and expertise with other things, too – Facebook, for a start. Should I update the old event page, or make a new one, for example ?
And, I think we need to start talking about Dynamic Range Day sooner, this year, so people have an idea what’s coming. Let’s be prepared – gather together links and posts on the issues, of great and terrible-sounding albums, of pages like this and this showing the support and interest in ending the loudness wars.
Positive or negative ?
Research shows that negative comments drive significantly more discussion on the internet. But something that several people weren’t sure about last year (myself included) was the negative tone – the “SHOUTING”.
So, should we focus on a more positive message this year ? Highlight the fact that there is no demonstrable correlation between sales and loudness ? That absolute level has no effect on playback level on the radio, in Spotify and any other player using mp3Gain ?
Or, are these issues too complex to get across easily, and should we just focus on making lots of noise (ironic!) and hoping people will read through to find the message ?
Let’s get started
Please just let me know your thoughts, ideas and suggestions about all of this in the comments. For a start, how about a new slogan, and a Twitter hashtag ? Everybody loves getting involved in those #yourfavouritefilmbutwitharudewordinthetitle “memes”, can we come up with something like that ?
I’m looking forward to hearing your ideas, and meanwhile here are a few of mine to get the ball rolling…
Tell me your suggestions !
And if you’d like to make sure you’re always up to date with news about Dynamic Range Day 2011, feel free to sign up for the Dynamic Range Day Newsletter, using this form:
Image by macca