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Jerry Biggers

Badly produced Nathaniel Branden Memorial

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Unable to attend the Memorial program in Los Angeles, I took advantage of the "streaming" online version. I don't know how the acoustics were in the hall, but on streaming it was abysmal. David Kelley was at times inaudible, and speaking just right - if you were standing right next to him!. Some of the speakers were not announced. One presenter, (couldn't get his name,...a Judge something) tried to play a portion of Nathaniel's lecture on Ayn Rand and Romantic Love, but instead of using a recorded version on CD or tape, he attempted to play the excerpt by sticking his wife's iPhone next to the microphone. The result, predictably, was once again, inaudible. One of the comments running along side the streaming image, noted that the bad sound was probably from their using the podium microphone for the hall, rather than the microphone for the streaming, which was apparently not "On." :unsure: Then, to top it off the presentation was interrupted about every ten minutes wth "Pringles" commercials. :angry: The speakers were not aware of the commercial breaks and kept on talking, but the streaming audience missed whatever they were saying.

Duncan Scott, a professional film maker, was listed as the producer. Somehow, he was not aware of the acoustics problem and apparently no one at the hall was monitoring the streaming session. :blush:

I am sure that any ARIan devotee was delighted.

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There's no substitute for professionalism. Isn't Objectivism the philosophy that highly values competence?

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I couldn't make it and also missed the video. Now it's time for editing and maybe we'll get something good.

I have so many memories of Nathaniel going back to the NBI days, I doubt I missed much regardless. If people want to share their own memories they might do some videos for You Tube. I might in a few years. I hope someone writes about what it was like to actually be there yesterday.

--Brant

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To say that David Kelley does not have a rep as a "dynamic" speaker and is "soft-spoken" (desirable in certain academic or personal conversational situations, but not as a program moderator) ) is a gross understatement. At the Branden Memorial Service, on at least one and possibly more occasions, he forgot to introduce the next speaker! The producer, Duncan Scott, certainly knows this. I happen to regard him as an Objectivist hero, but in this case, his streaming of the program was a disaster. Not only in sound quality, but in the streaming where many commercials where inserted during the program, the result being that what was said by the speakers at that time was lost.

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I suspect Scott had to do too much too soon, but now I'm glad I missed the streaming video. I was upset about that last night. What's now important is he's got a lot of raw footage. Let's see what he can do with it.

As for Kelley not introducing some speakers--is he that much of an absent-minded professor? That's kinda strange. I also never got the idea this event was well publicized and now I suspect it was under-attended. There were still 40 open registration slots on the Atlas Society website on Saturday, down one from Friday.

All that really matters is how well it went for those who attended. If, like me, you didn't make it, we're out of that loop.

--Brant

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I watched various snippets from the streamed video, hours after it happened. I have the same disappointments about it as others have already stated.

Kelley is a fine thinker and writer, but a dismal speaker. There will never be a movie "The Passion of David Kelley." He and Peter Schwartz are neck-and-neck for most efficacious at putting me to sleep when they speak. I used to be like that a long time ago, but I've mostly gotten over it. :-)

Good news: a much more fitting, higher quality memorial to NB is in the works. It will be announced soon, if it hasn't already been. That's all I'm at liberty to say at this time.

On that subject...not to be copycat or second-hander, but I think that videos of "Nathaniel Branden, in His Own Words" and "Barbara Branden, in Her Own Words" would be delightful and inspirational. (The ones about Peikoff and Rand were good, not great.)

REB

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