More and more we see new media imitating old media which is yet another sign of new media’s inevitable move toward the mainstream. In this case Loren Feldman the popular and controversial video blogger has just lost a distribution deal with Verizon Mobile due to a series of videos he created back in 2007 called Tech****.
This offended and crossed the bounds of socially acceptable humor for many, including Sheegeeks publisher Corvida. She explains in a post today that as a Verizon customer she could not sit by when she heard about Feldman’s deal with Verizon.
For his part back at the conclusion of the series Feldman posted a seven minute rant explaining the entire series was an experiment and demonstration of some sort. He also explains that the first video in the series referenced Jews not African Americans.
So what do Loren Feldman and Don Imus have in common?
Something they said on air (the Internet in Feldman’s case) has cost them money. The comparisons end there.
To be honest I never watched the series in full until this morning. It is pretty clear the entire thing was an orchestrated controversy. But what exactly was the point? To drive page views? To prove that other people are really racists pretending not to be? To prove that just about anyone can create a viral effect and blog storm with a little forethought? Or just a very smart guy trying to be funny and knowing full well that some people would be offended by his humor?
Feldman is without a doubt the new media equivalent of Howard Stern. Hilliarious and loved by some even though they feel he steps over the line at times and reviled and without social redemption by others.
Comparisons to Imus are lazy. Imus says stupid and offensive things unintentionally. Stern and Feldman know exactly what he they are saying and pull the puppet strings of their fans as well as detractors.
It is far too soon to dub Loren a comic genius ala Lenny Bruce, George Carlin or Howard Stern but he is crazy like a fox.
So what do you say is Feldman a small minded racist or The King of all New Media?