30 September 2010

Burning Man 2010...What you dont see....

While BURNcast is devoted to the art, culture and community of Burning Man, I feel it's important -- and only fair -- to give voice to the people of Nevada who live in the area of Black Rock City the other 51 weeks of the year.

This video submission doesn't paint a very pretty picture of Burning Man. It was shot by citizen journalist and YouTuber who goes by the handle desertlovernv as she describes the moop and trash she discovers on a five minute walk-about less than two weeks after the event.

desertlovernv writes:
"This event is supposed to be a "Leave No Trace" event. Pack it in, pack it out. However, this video shows you how little is actually packed out and what still remains. This video was shot on September 19th, thirteen days after the event, and numerous dust storms later. There was no-one else in this area of the playa, not even the supposed clean up team that is supposed to be picking up all the remnants of the event."
Metric, a long-time burner, volunteer of DPW, resident of Gerlach, and the Executive Director of the Friends of Black Rock/High Rock responded by leaving a comment that said:
"Nice. You made a film of areas set aside for detailed cleaning, looks like the Man Base and probably someone's art work burn site based on the pile of decomposed granite that's there. The CD with the pink thing? That's a marker to identify someone's art work, and so that the cleanup crew knows whose stuff they are cleaning. The day you filmed is a full 3 weeks before the end of clean-up activities. Nice work, super sleuth. Take your false indignation and shove it, poser."
Still, desertlovernv insists:
"Why does it take six weeks to clean up a "Leave No Trace Event?"
Obviously both people in this story care about the Black Rock Desert and the impact the Burning Man festival has on its fragile ecosystem.

Hopefully desertlovernv's concerns can be addressed respectfully and without any further insults or name calling and moreover, that she will return in three more weeks to document clean-up and come away with a brighter report.

UPDATE 19 DECEMBER 2010 -  Metric has kindly shown us the new link to the updated video that desertlovernv  uploaded a few days ago and here it is below:

desertlovernv writes:
"This film was taken on an iPhone on September 19th 2010 in the Black Rock Desert where the Burning Man event is held. This video was posted approximately two months ago but was removed by the maker because they received threats of physical harm from the members of the Department of Public Works (DPW) and other Burners.

It has become increasingly clear that the organizers of Burning Man do not care about the playa, and there is some question as to the BLM's commitment to our public lands, therefor this video lives again, to show the dirty side of Burning Man."
If desertlovernv has been receiving threats of violence this is a really serious matter. I hope that she is reporting them to the proper authorities as well as putting the Black Rock City LLC on notice. I mean, it would be TRAGIC if she ended up like Karen Silkwood. Just sayin'.

29 September 2010

Halp! BURNcast's Website Crashes My Browser!

Today on the BURNcast Facebook fan page I received a comment from Alex (remember him? he can be heard in the BURNcast audio podcast episode number 83 entitled "The Green Shoes Installation") who said "Your website crashes my browser and doesn't load properly. Dunno if I'm the only one but it's worth checking out."

Checking out indeed.  Below are two solutions. The first one is if you're viewing BURNcast on a Mac using Safari. The second one is if you're viewing this site with FireFox (either PC or Mac).

I'm going to start by saying because BURNcast is a video blog, it relies heavily on Flash. I'm not going to get into why Flash is evil here.  But I will say that much like rule #34: if there's a crash, it's because of Flash. Flash is a multimedia platform used to add animation, video, and interactivity to Web pages.

I can testify to this because I had the same issue in viewing BURNcast in Safari. Crash! Crash! Crash!  And worse: I sometimes would even have a kernel panic.

For Safari Users

When I asked Lecter about this, he told me to install ClickToFlash.

ClickToFlash is awesome. It resolved my issues immediately. It blocks all Flash content from loading. It then leaves placeholders on the webpage that enable you to view the content when you click on it.

With ClickToFlash, Flash won't load until specifically requested. This means your CPU usage will stay at normal levels when browsing the web, surfing will be snappy, battery life will improve, your laptop won't get as hot, and your fan won't kick in as frequently.

My most favorite feature of ClickToFlash is when you do click on a video in YouTube it will most likely play back in the high quality QuickTime format, not Flash, depending on its original encoding. And that alone makes viewing a video in ClickToFlash much nicer to view!

It's because YouTube also offers H.264 videos, which are used when viewing YouTube on the iPhone. With ClickToFlash, you get access to those same, higher quality videos.

For FireFox, Chrome and Flock Users

According to my stats, most of you folks are on a PC and along with that, theeeee number one browser used by my audience is Firefox. So here again is another workaround solution: Flashblock!

Flashblock does the same thing as ClickToFlash. Flashblock version 1.5.13 is designed to work only with Firefox 1.5 and newer, Netscape Navigator 9 and with Flock. You can even get Flashblock for Chrome.

For other browsers such as Seamonkey 2.0, and Netscape 9,  go here.

For older browsers such as Firefox 1.0.7, Mozilla Suite 1.7, Seamonkey 1.x, and Netscape 7/8,  go here.

And if you're trying to view BURNcast in IE, I really have to ask: WHY???

Venice Beach -> Black Rock City: Burning Man 2010

From veniceBeachhobo: Our Burning Man Metropolis adventures. Much love to everyone who has gone or will go! Special thanks to mastahnick...your video inspired me to make my own.

28 September 2010

Happy Tu-tu Tuesday! Don't Stop Believing, Playa Style @ Burning Man 2010

Another epic video from Mastahnick who writes: "Can't stop believing how every minute on the playa is sooo unpredictable. First you're watching someone getting reborn as they fall through a life-size rebirthing tube (hilarious!), and next thing you know it... you're singing and dancing along to GLEE songs! Awesome!"

27 September 2010

Burning Man 2010 from Benjamin Taft )'(

This beautifully lensed video from Burning Man 2010 was shot with a GoPro HD camera. This totally beats my Flip HD and at a very comparable price.

Burning Man 2010 from Benjamin Taft on Vimeo.
Editing: Benjamin Taft
Video by Benjamin Taft and Adam Bognar

26 September 2010

24 September 2010

Friday's Burning Man Music Post

Wrapping up this week's blog postings is some music from Burning Man 2010. These tracks are from ConRit Live at MalMart featuring J Naykid and Dr. Bud Green by JNaykid

If you're a deejay and you've got embedable tracks recorded from this year's burn please share it!

Have a great weekend!

Burning Man 2010 - Destination Unknown

This series of videos is from railaybay aka Michael Murphy.  It's from "Destination Unknown" which is a series of travel videos he's been working on for the last two years.
  • The first featured video is also the first in his Burning Man 2010 series.
  • The second one, entitled "A Ride on the Playa - Burning Man 2010" is a bike ride. 
  • The third and final video is called "Camp Shit Beer" which is also the name of his camp.

23 September 2010

WWGN at Burning Man 2010

This story brought to you from the World Wide Good News network.

As Seen on CNN: Record crowds get dirty at 'Burning Man' 2010

As a blogger, I'm always fascinated with how mainstream media tells the Burning Man story from the outside looking in.  This clip is from CNN.

This clip is from Fox News. Fair and balanced!

No...seriously! What???

Stay tuned. Coming up on the six o'clock news comes a report from WWGN!

Look up in the sky (again)! Skydiving videos from Burning Man 2010!

In this playlist of three totally kick ass videos you'll get to experience skydiving -- however vicariously and vicerally -- at Burning Man 2010!
  • The first video is mine.  I took it at Tony and Laura's wedding near the Temple of Flux on the Giant Cock Car.  Before the ceremony I looked up and saw several skydivers making their way down.
  • The second video is from the folks at Burning Sky camp set to an awesome track "Sometimes I Get a Good Feeling". If anybody knows who mixed this, please give me a shout. The last shot in this video is the money shot in a dust storm.  It's pretty epic!
  • The third video was shot on 2 September 2 at 11:41am -- just minutes before the GeoEye satellite made its pass over Black Rock City. The video takes you through the entirely dizzying five minute jump from the plane. What's cool is that you can see the "peace" sign that was being created around the Man (and the "palm tree" if you know where to look) as the skydiver makes his descent.
Please note: HD is available for the final two videos in full screen mode.

22 September 2010

Burning Man 2010 Metropolis

From inkandmask: "This is a video montage of my virgin burn. Definitely the most intense experience of my life. I miss it already."

2 Bonus Videos for Hump Day from Burning Man 2010

For your lunchtime fix: two Burning Man 2010 videos with extra phat bass! Can I get some bacon with that?

Burning Man 2010 - Montage Music Video from SteveSF123

21 September 2010

BURNcast.TV #63 - Decompressing with Ricky Vegas

Ricky Vegas is a longtime listener of BURNcast who for years my campmates would tell me "You have a fan that came by and he is hot!"

True that, folks, as you can see.

One day early last year Ricky wrote me fan letter and now here we are: decompressing over lunch in Los Angeles as he makes his way back to Arizona.

In this video Ricky talks about his experiences of 2010, his gift to the citizens of Black Rock City, and offers some advice to both the jaded and veteran burner.

Embedded photos courtesy of Shutterslut.

2 Bonus Videos for Tu-tu-Tuesday from Burning Man 2009

I guess I'm into moody/ambient/downtempo Burning Man music videos today. Here's a couple of extra bonus videos to get you through Tu-tu-Tuesday. Can you imagine what Hump Day will be like? :)

These videos from 1MoreLife were shot in 2009. But you almost can't tell in the first one entitled "Angel Dust". If I could give out an award for videos this one would score well in "Best Use of Playa".

Burning Man 2010 in 3D

Click image above to be directed to 3D gallery
Harold Baize has 15 years of stereoscopic photographs from Burning Man and he's just posted images from 2010 on his website.

Baize also posted some brief words to go along with each year of photos and 2010 is no different.

Having attended Burning Man since 1996, he's seen the event grow from less than 8,000 attendees (at a ticket cost of only $35) to well over 50K this year (at a ticket cost of $360).

From his first year in 1996 when the theme was "Inferno" he writes:

In 1996 the theme was a descent into hell and it was like watching a live representation of Hieronymous Bosch’s Garden of Earthly Delights painting. Pepe’s operas always start late. While waiting I was moved by the warmth of the crowd. A young girl came by giving away hand decorated glow-in-the-dark stickers. It felt much like the spirit of the 60’s counter culture had been mutated into a 1990’s mentality. Hard edged yet spontaneous, honest, and with a strong sense of regard for the well being of others. The open sharing, creativity, and the dramatic landscape of the Black Rock desert dry lake bed combined to make our first Burning Man a very moving experience. We immediately started talking about next year.

1996 was the last year of true anarchy at Burning Man. Camping out at the edge was a little scary. Cars would fly by on the flat playa at very high speed. It was a little hard to get to sleep between the fear of being run over, and the constant thump of rave camps. One man died when, after drinking, he drove his motorcycle into a pickup truck. Two more people were seriously injured when a drunk driver ran over their tent. Things would have to change, there would have to be some rules.

About this past year when the theme was "Metropolis" he writes:

One of the reasons some Yonder [Baize's camp] people decided to quit Burning Man is that they prefer the freedom of the old days. No rules. You take responsibility for yourself. In 1998 I joined a group of people, mostly Yonder and Cultural Workers Union, who meet out in the middle Black Rock desert and recreate the feel of the Burning Man of old. No city. No rules. NO MAN. I suggested the name "Noman". A lot of the Yonder people don't like giving it a name because that makes it an "event" like Burning Man. I don't care. It provides the sense of freedom and connection with the desert that you can no longer get at Burning Man...

Larry Harvey has suggested that Burning Man is an experiment in spontaneous culture. It is a grand undertaking that is constantly evolving. To me the people at Burning Man represent a cross section of bohemian spirits that spans at least three generations, all expressing their uniqueness, but united by the freedom and acceptance of their free expression, and the act of sharing their creations. The biggest problem facing Burning Man is not the bureaucracy, or theft and vandalism; it is the people who act like yahoos and spectators. Yahoos are the drunken and irresponsible people who act like frat boys and don’t respect other people or the fragile desert environment. They don't understand that to make such an event work everyone must respect and help everyone else. Spectators are the lazy people who just come to ogle the naked women (or men) and don’t contribute to the event. If Burning Man can change the yahoos and spectators, and get them to really understand the event, then Burning Man will continue to be an important cultural phenomenon.

On to Burning Man 2011! The theme is "Rites of Passage." Could be a great year.

Need Red/Blue 3D glasses? Get a pair free here. Important: Java based viewer for galleries starting with 2006. Requires Java run time enabled. Google Chrome users need to install Java run time from this site. Please read viewing format information for older galleries Use the drop-down menu in the Java applet viewer to change viewing method.

Mastahnick's "My Playa Adventure - Burning Man 2010 Part One"

I love-love-love-love-love-love-looooooooooove videos from Mastahnick of Dilated Peoples Camp.  So much so that I'm bumping his latest offering up to the top of Tu-tu-Tuesday's blog postings and superseding my own video interview coming up later today!

I've embedded this video to play in HD so click on it, let it load -- get yourself a cuppajoe if your connection is slow -- and come on back to watch the magic unfold. This is only part one of his camp's Burning Man adventure and all I can say is "Part 2? MASTAHNICK BRING IT!"

20 September 2010

Burning Man 2009 - Get Wild in Black Rock City by Sharam

While we're well into our 2010 season for Burning Man, we just received this very cool submission from Burning Man 2009. DJ Sharam presents "Get Wild in Black Rock City" a three part YouTube video series about Sharam's adventure at Burning Man festival in 2009. Follow Sharam exploring the playa, trying to find out what Burning Man is all about. And see him play at the infamous Opulent Temple. Also starring in this video is the legendary DJ/Producer: Carl Cox.

The Minty Fresh Gift Ring: Recap

The Minty Fresh Gift Ring: Recap

At the beginning. (photo by Veganskater)

More for myself then anybody else, although I'm hoping that others take an interest, I decided to chronicle the "Minty Fresh Gift Ring" that was my installation in the Center Camp Cafe. It started out life as a way to do something with all the used Altoid™ tins I had in the back of my car. What can I say, minty fresh breath is a priority in my life. Basically nobody (that I know of) knows how to recycle them and we hate to throw them out and have them become part of a landfill somewhere. So, instead I decided to upcycle them and hopefully have some fun too.

Before the burn I loaded up all the chambers with little gifts, some were custom glass pieces that I had made, some were little treasures that I had held onto for years and decided to part with (like my dragon claw) and some were merely quarter (actually it's more like 50 cents to a buck these days) toys found in vending machines. Then set up the rules, periodically visit it to make sure it hadn't fallen completely into disrepair (which it did now and then) and wait till the end when I could clean it out and see what wonderful treasures I ended up with.

So here is at least a partial list of what I ended up with in no particular order:

Three condoms of various shapes and sizes.

Rolling Papers, a C02 canister and some sort of concentrated energy drink (there may also have been something extra with the loose rolling paper... but it was long gone by the time I opened the ring up) :)

A tampon, some fake tree leaves, a prayer card, finger light, a button and a googly eye.

A sticker a barrette and a smiley face coin purse.

A plastic bracelet, a burningman handmade necklace, a rubber bracelet, a pom pom and an ear ring with no back.

Two packs of (interesting) gum, a handful of Starburst™, a mini Twix™ Bar, several pieces of gum and two Emergen-C® type packets.

And then some of my favorites :)...

Like a mini carabiner from a camp who's name I still can't read.

A BRC citizens button.

A handmade patch that says "you are loved". ♥

a little handmade clay Santa head.

And the one that confuses me the most... a little crystal heart in a bag with a note (written on a piece of a cigarette pack) that just says "Bring better gifts and come next year!"

Out of the initial 32 chambers only 26 survived and came home with me... I'd like to hope that the others became ash trays for those who were not otherwise prepared.

So that's it... if you had an experience with the ring... good, bad, indifferent... I'd love to hear about it. I kept a few of my favorite things out of the loot and the rest I put right back into the ring in the hopes that it will show up again some time. Let me know what you thought.

And much minty fresh good luck to all.

P.S. and feel free to share this with anybody else who you know who had something fun happen with the MFGR as well... I left it open to everybody.

the rules...

19 September 2010

GeoEye's Satellite Imagery of Burning Man 2010

A lot of folks want to know what happened to the Burning Man Earth team's GeoEye satellite image of Black Rock City that was slated for 2 September, 2010 at precisely 11:41 a.m.

It looks like at this time the GeoEye website is only featuring imagery of  Black Rock City taken from Wednesday (the day before) however there's a couple of photos from Thursday available for viewing at BME's Facebook page.

That said, we did some hunting around and totally scored a huge-ass image from GeoEye (click on the photo below to embiggen) and we're hoping it will be available for viewing as a gigapan soon.

Satellite photo of BM taken on the 2nd by the good people at ... on Twitpic
Black Rock City @ 11:41am Sept 2nd, 2010. Click the image. It's ginormous!!!
Note: The watermark is incorrect. This image is indeed from 2010.

If you look real closely -- after you clicked on the above photo like I told you to -- you'll see the palm tree just off of the 5:30 radius.  Further on down the road near 4:30 you'll see a spider and if you go all the way over at 3:30 you'll see "BWB" as Burners Without Borders throws it down. 

Of course, surrounding the Man itself is the peace symbol as K'buster mentioned and here's a close up...

11:41am Sept 2nd, 2010. Several hundred people forming a "peace" sign around the Man

Here's hoping there are more to come. Many thanks to Jeffrey Johnson for his efforts on this project!

Temple of Flux Gigapan Photography from Burning Man 2010

Temple of Flux. Field of View: 103.2 degrees wide, 66.9 degrees high
Click image to embiggen

The Burning Man Earth team recently posted some really cool shots from Burning Man 2010. Above is a pano by Rich Gibson who was hoisted by 120' boom lift to get this ultra dense gigapixel image of the Temple Of Flux crew. Click on the image to embiggen or follow this link and make sure you use the zoom control to get deep into the image.

Burning Man 2010 Music Video - Full Of Fire

I have always wanted to do a lip dub at Burning Man but I don't think I could pull one off as awesome as this one. In this video Groovehoops throws it down to Al Green's "Full of Fire".

18 September 2010

Burning Man: Eternus Metropolis

From the the videographer Shibby4984: After another awesome trip to Burning Man I have again assembled a compilation of the video that I was able to capture before my camera batteries died at this year's burn. I hope all my friends from the playa and everywhere else enjoy this presentation. )'(

17 September 2010

Memories and Recollections from Burning Man 2010 with Freddy & Eddy

In this sex positive podcast by our friends Freddy & Eddy there's actually not too much sex, but lots of good feelings and positive energy as  they recount their trip to Burning Man 2010. Good friend Jamye Waxman, who also attended the week long Nevada festival, joins them to spin stories, seek meaning, and explore the impact of the playa on our lives the rest of the year.

16 September 2010

Fear & Loathing in Black Rock City (Burning Man 2010)

film by: blairerickson_@_gmail.com
A brief taste of things one might have encountered if you visited Black Rock City this year.

Note: This video is brought to you in HTML5. Be sure to toggle "HD".

15 September 2010

5 Things to Do at Burning Man

So you have heard all of the amazing stories about the event and now you are thinking of going. Or you've seen the photos and you were out there all week yet you wonder where the 40' woman came from or how you could have missed an entire movie theater. Well here is a list of things you can do when you are at Burning Man.

1: Take a day and a night to see the art. Each year there are many wonderful pieces of art spread around the Playa. Some pieces are made for night viewing and interaction while others are more of the day time variety. I'd suggest you do this tour sober and on a bike, but it's your burn so do it how ever you want.

2: Go to the dance camps. There are both day and night dance camps. I'm a fan of District by day and Root Society by night but I'd say try out a few and see where you feel is best suited for your style.

3: Volunteer. That's right take time and give back to the burn. There are plenty of opportunities from Greeters to Lamp Lighters and so much more.

4: Go make some new friends. Oh I am sure the group you came with (or plan on going with) will be amazing but at the Burn you have the opportunity to meet interesting people from around the globe. Even more interesting, most of them actually want to meet other people and have a great time. Find a new best friend, a lover, a pet or maybe a partner in crime.

5: Get on an art car. Actually I'd suggest riding as many as you can but at least take a moment to ride one. The owners are generally pretty awesome and love to tell you about them and ride you around (assuming they have room).

Sure there are hundreds of things to get out there and experience, but to make a comprehensive and complete list would defeat one of the greatest things about the Burn. It's about you finding your way around. So this coming year get out there and experience YOUR Burn in YOUR way.


14 September 2010

BURNcast.TV #62 - Simon of the Playa

Shooting this video was rather chaotic and all over the place. But Simon is one of the nicest people I've never met before. Fuck your day, Simon! Thanks for immortalizing the community (drink!) on yer arm!

10 September 2010

Stay Out of Our Camp, Acid-Assault Hippie!

It was a very good year:
2010 was a truly amazing year at the big camping trip for my camp.  Our bar got lovely Esplanade placement, our camp-mates pulled together beautifully to make our public space a place that people felt comfortable and wanted to spend time in.  We threw Bootie one night,  did a live radio simulcast from the bar, had Culann's Hounds play a great afternoon set, and met tons of wonderful denizens of Black Rock City.  All in all it was a very successful year and well worth all the hard work .

Esplanade placement rules, but...
I could very well say this was the best burn we have had in at least 10 years, except for one blight on our otherwise wonderful experience: acid assaults by complete strangers.   On Friday night, the bar was going in full effect and I was djing.  One of our bartenders, who is a good friend, came to find me on the dj platform to let me know he had been "dosed" by "hippie dude" who had offered him a sip of some "some single barrel bourbon".  My friend was quite familiar with the sensation of coming on to acid, so came to tell me before it hit him too hard so I could warn the rest of our bartenders. From that night on we had to institute a policy that nobody could accept food or drink from strangers unless they were willing to take a chance on being dosed. 

We were not alone in being targeted
The next evening I was having dinner with some friends from a neighboring camp, and was informed that one of their number (who was at the time working as a Medic for Burning Man) had been dosed with acid via a spray bottle while he was on shift.  It seemed a bit fantastic, but not impossible.  I told the story of what happened to our bartender, and we decided it must be some camp's fucked up "art" project for the Burn this year.

Vicious hippie strikes again

We had a fabulously fun burn night, tending bar and watching what we could see of the burn from our camp.  I helped the folks at Airship Victoria launch with their tesla coil.  We carried on the fun most of the night.  The next afternoon, I was finishing up lunch in my camp, when another of my camp-mates, who I had assumed had been sleeping, came and sat down.  After a few minutes she told me that she had been dosed that morning while tending bar by a hippie dude wielding a spray bottle.  She had spent the last 5 hours having a creepy time at the Center Camp Cafe, and was still feeling it, and not in a good way.  At that point I went to the radio station in our village and made an announcement that some hippie or group of hippies were roaming Burning Man assaulting people with LSD.

My message to those responsible

To the hippie or hippies that think they are opening minds and freeing souls with their acid mission, I say this: you are personally responsible for sowing feelings of distrust and hostility amongst the residents of Black Rock City.  Never again will members of my village feel comfortable accepting food or drink from strangers, and now anyone showing up in our camp with a spray bottle is going to be decked, and held down until a ranger can be found.  We are banning spray bottles.  We may even ban hippies outright, if that is what it takes to keep such stupid behavior at bay.  Its not 1967, you are not doing anything even slightly original.  You are simply fucking up other people's Burning Man, and destroying the sense of community that we "burners" try to preserve.  You are no different than the frat boy who sexually assaults a drunk/high woman, or the tweaker who starts a fight with a total stranger.  Stay the fuck out of my camp, hippie.  Save your LSD attacks for the Rainbow Festival.

Dirty John's Flickr Album - Burning Man 2010

Oh the images are starting to trickle in! Share yours on BURNcast!

07 September 2010

Satellite Imagery from Burning Man 2010

On Wednesday, 1 September 2010, GeoEye’s GeoEye-1 satellite captured imagery from Burning Man. It's now available for viewing through Google Earth. More information and how-to at the Google Earth and Maps Team blog.
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