Jason Kemp [jasonkempnz]
What is your blog address? What subjects do you deal with?
I write about culture, economics and big ideas
What blogging system have you adopted and why?
I use WordPress and have done since 2006. I have been writing for 30+ years for myslef and for magazines and other formats.
What do you currently have in your MP3 player?
Everything from Shapeshifter and other electronica remixes to NZ singer songwriters like Flip Grater and Miriam Clancy. I listen widely and often to new music that I may not like. A favourite album right now is Rufus Wainwainwright "Out of the Game" but it could just as easily be Gillian Welch or Alison Krauss.
What books are you currently reading?
I often read 2 or 3 books at a time. The Tell Tale Brain by VS Ramachandran is a book by a neuroscientist. It links back to my research on behaviour and marketing. I often write about economic impacts and cultural change and so "Thinking Fast and Slow" by Daniel Kahneman is also on the bedside table.
I'm also rereading some French short stories by Michel Tournier called "The Midnight Love Feast". I also have an architecture book on the de Young musiem in San Fran after a recent trip there.
Places in the world that you have visited recently.
I live in Auckland New Zealand so most places are quite far away comparatively speaking. However in the past 6 weeks I have been to Dunedin ( in NZ - but 1100k to the South) Sydney - Australia plus LA and SF in the U.S. I work globally as much of my work is online but Sydney and SF are my 2 favourite cities besides Auckland where I live.
What is that special film you never tire of watching?
It is hard to just have one film but if I only get to choose one it is Bladerunner which is now 30 years old.
The overall look and fell design wise is enormously influential on many other movies. The script deals with the existensial nature of life and what makes us human. It is a movie that echoes many of the grand themes in life and that is why I have watched it many times.
What do you use: Mac or PC and why?
I use Macs including an iPad for most everything now. I still use a PC for testing Much of my work involves content but I am also quite technical with a good working knowledge of systems and programming code. I find this all easier on the Mac.
What is to come after consumist society?
I do some work with transition towns and also with communities based around WordPress which is an open source publishing platform and TEDx which is an ideas based movement. Transition towns was setup to re think what happens after peak oil and is now much wider in scope.
It seems like communities are becoming more focussed and more global at the same time. The adage - think local - act global is quite real for me and my friends.
Consumerism has alwways been a fraudulent way to live and taking what you need and enjoying simple thngs is much more sustainable. This doesn't mean giving up on the finer things it just means a more thoughtful approach.
Do you find the saturation of advertising in the media excessive?
Advertising is much easier to ignore now. It is not very clever and mainstream media is dead and dying all around the world.
I pretty much ignore the ( mainstream) media except for research. Haven't really bought a newspaper for 10+ years. All of my content is online. I do watch some TV quite selectively and work around advertising. I understand the business model reasons for it and I have worked for ad agencies in the past and will probably do so again in the future.
I use twitter extensively to find stories I am interested in. I often follow writers and subject matter specialists and if they publish in the mainstream then I might read them there but often the debate and process on twitter is far more insightful than what pops out the end after all of the business considerations are taken into account.
What were your favourite subjects when you were in primary/secondary school?
At Primary school I was a keen reader and interested in everything. I did extra classes in music. At secondary school I continued this with a full science programme plus music, history, geography and anything else I could fit in.
At University I studied politics, history, law, marketing and ended up with 3 qualifications. Having a wide range of interests has worked well for me.
Piracy continues to grow: What will happen to the music and film
industries and culture in general?
There is now a big difference in attitudes between adults over the age of 40 and anyone younger than that with regards to music especially.
Music companies made the wrong moves early on and now most users won't pay for content which is not great if you are a content creator. On the other hand some well known musicians made "super rents" from the old systems and so there is not much symnpathy for them or the record companies.
I think that music applications like Bjork "Biophilia" or Paul Kelly - "Making Gravy" is the way to go. I like tablet technology and anything that can reinvent music content for the iPad and other tablets will have a future.
Music in the last 10 years has become much more of a live artform and that is a great thing. I still like going to concerts but promotors need to consider that no everyone wants to wait till 11pm in a club drinking over priced drinks before hearing the main act.
We need more musical events at family friendly venues and timeslots. Live music at home always used to be a thing prior to TV and I think with more musical intruments and a user generated culture there is more content being made.
We can all be film makers and musicians. Garage band is fun. I think we are heading into more of a communal sharing kind of musical culture where two way sharing is the norm.
This is the age of the read write web. Broadcast television is for those too lazy to pick and programme their own content.
Apple TV and other internet ready devices are going to explode the commercial triangle of advertisers and broadcaster & passive consumers.
I consider most corporate organiseations to be telling porkies most of the time and I don't trust them with anything if I can help it. Large organisations have not earned trust and broadcaster and music companies have ripped off artists and consumers for years.
The future belongs to the makers and creators and that is all of us.
What sports do you play and how often?
I don't play any sports. I am however very active in swimming, cycling and walking.
I think you are looking for something like a team sports answer here. Who has time for that? Work and play happens at any tme of the day and night especially when ( as I do) we work in multiple timezones and locations.
If I have a friend involved in an organised team sport I might watch to support them but I also don't watch any sporrts on TV at all. Sport in my book is something to do and not a spectator event.
How do you explain the rise in "fame" culture?
Everyone wants to be noticed. We have a media culture that echoes this. However usually that means everything gets dumbed down and what is reflected on the TV part of the media is people who are famous for being on TV.
Being noticed can help with having more opportunities in work and in life. It can also be quite destructive in excess as it also allows some people to act as if there were no consequences to what they do.
There are always consequences and that includes unintended ones.
Being well know as being good at what you do is a better thing. That is fame of a sort and seems more like a reward for doing well.
In which city do you live? What are your favourite and least favourite things about it?
I live in Auckand, New Zealand. I can see the Skytower which is downtown less than 3 k away but I live near a park. I love that Auckland is near the water ( between 2 harbours) and that in 30 minutes I can be in the country at a wild beach or at a city beach in 10 minutes.
We have 1.5m people and traffic is a problem. Car culture is big here and so public transport is playing catch up. Trains are getting better but not quite there yet.
I'd prefer if we were part of Australia. It is easier and cheaper to get from here to Sydney than to say Dunedin because there is more traffic and more people in Sydney / Auckland than in smaller NZ cities like Dunedin.
Physical isolation means higher oil / petrol costs are embedded in everything and so the true cost of living on a small island is comparatively higher than in living in say Australia.
Auckland, New Zealand