ASCII by Jason Scott

Jason Scott's Weblog

Contempt —

con·tempt (kn-tmpt) n. The feeling or attitude of regarding someone or something as inferior, base, or worthless; scorn.

A danger of observation and collecting of data is that you end up finding meta-situations; perhaps you realize that in the end, all skateboarding is performance art, and then you realize that all athletic endeavors are performance art, and then, eventually, you realize that performance is one of the main human traits…. and so on, until finally you’ve encompassed all of existence into a huge “meta-performance paradigm” and nobody knows what the fuck you’re talking about. In fact, while you’re not being listened to anymore because your stuff doesn’t appear to have relevance, you occasionally pipe up with “I thought of that first!” when you see someone applying similar thought trains to yours in a random forum or situation, and then you act like you “own” all this and consider it “old hat” and then you’re not just a irrelevant cloud-head, you’re an asshole irrelevant cloud-head with a persecution complex.

Bearing that danger in mind, I’ve been finding in my old age a particular dislike of what I perceive to be contempt in the actions of others, and now that I started thinking along that way, I’m seeing contempt everywhere. And then it starts dovetailing into all my general dislikes, and so on.

Hence, my dislike of advertising, especially general-call, endless, blaring advertising with no purpose other than to get your attention in the hope that some tiny percentage of people who hear it, out of the thousands or millions who do, will possibly remember the message or the brand long enough to be swayed by in when they have to make a decision at one point. I’ve gone off on advertising before, but now I realize that beyond the pure wreck it makes of existence. It betrays contempt, both by the person who creates it to force a little of the world a certain way by diminishing the living experience for everyone else, and by the person willing to serve it up to the people who they interact with, to turn them into little open-mouthed token machines that they might be able to squeeze a few pennies out of. Children put up advertisements and such on their websites, but they’re children. They also smash mailboxes in the heat of summer because of that satisfying THUNK they make. People who are old enough to do simple math and calculate amount of diminished browsing experience to earned money should figure out that they’ve been shoved on a street corner by a big old corporate pimp with bright colors in their logo and you ain’t going to see any checks until you catch some attention. Yes, I just called you a whore.

This is the year I finally did the “what the hell am I sticking into my face” realization and started changing my diet for good and hopefully forever. It has been since May that I’ve had a soda (pop, tonic, seltzer, coke) of any sort, diet or otherwise. This is my personal journey to take, but if you look at what’s in that stuff, either the diet or the regular, you wonder why the hell this thing is in schools, given to children, adults, elderly, why anyone would willfully put it in themselves. I don’t think less of people for doing it; there is so much money being put into marketing it and I drank it myself for nigh on 30 years, so obviously I’m no better. But once I looked at what was actually being put into these drinks, especially in the switch to High Fructose Corn Syrup, I started to see contempt. Contempt by foodmakers to sell people absolute garbage. This is outside of a personal responsibility debate; I’m talking about the fact that so much ‘food” isn’t really “food” at all. Of course stuff can be chemically made to taste good. A lot of stuff can be made to seem like other stuff. It’s that someone could create it, sell it, know it was going into people, and that it was just mankind’s evolutionary, omnivoric resiliency that doesn’t kill them. Always for profit, always for an increased margin until the thing you’re selling has as much to do with your company’s “image” as a trash heap has to do with a restaurant. I start to wonder how someone goes to sleep knowing they just jammed another ton of preservative into the stomachs of 100,000 children that day. Contempt.

On it goes, where I find that I get angry at a situation or a place or a set of rules and I don’t know exactly why, but chances are that at the bottom of it I see someone or something showing pure contempt, where they can’t even hide it properly. Websites that are in the process of selling out their users to the highest bidder 20 minutes before the community/regulars have ever gelled, documentaries that are so single-minded in trying to get THE POINT across that you feel less like an audience member than a rag doll being shoved from situation to situation, ebay sales where you look at the description and the fine print and realize this person is five degrees south of a mugger….

…and then there’s Sony.

I had in my mind an idea to do an entry on Sony for the past few months, but what the hell, it fits here. Keep the caveat that I worked for Sony for a year and a half, and have been a Sony customer for something like 20 years or so. I still buy Sony; it’s my editing software, it’s occasionally my DV tape or my DVD-ROM media or a peripheral or two. I own a Playstation 2. I have a Playstation 1. I could probably do some rooting around in the office and the basement and flip a few things around and see the Sony logo. So I got a lot of Sony here, in my life and my home.

But if you ever needed an example of a company that functions purely on contempt, silicon and viciousness, look no further than the Sony Corporation. All divisions. All departments. All products. Fuck Sony. Put me down for that, if you need to add a quote file somewhere:

“Fuck Sony.” – Jason Scott

Like I said, Sony is my editing software. But it’s not. Sonic Foundry is my editing software. But Sony bought Sonic Foundry, Sony has taken it over, and Sony has renamed it from “Vegas Video” to “Sony Vegas” and have started smooshing the product into the Sony way of looking at things. The most recent version of the editing software simply will not work with my HD camera I bought; you have to buy one of several solutions to be able to pull in the audio/video into Sony Vegas. This is not because it’s a difficult thing outside of Sony’s capabilities; it’s because Sony are bastards. Version 5.0 had presets to work in “HD”. Now they don’t; Vegas 6.0 works in “HDV”, Sony’s format that they love. And they added support for rendering your projects in PSP-compatible formats. Because PSPs are owned by Sony. And the format is owned by Sony. And Sony wants you to use Sony Products to generate Sony-Only Compatible Stuff that works with other Sony Products so you can play it in Sony Devices. Sony wants it all, and they don’t care what gets in their way.

I could expand this entry until you couldn’t read it in a single sitting, talking about all the crap Sony has done over the years, inventing formats, adding features so their devices can fuck over the people using them to Sony’s financial advantage, ruining viable technologies so that it all goes to Sony. Law Nerds and Rights Nerds who are more qualified (or willing) than myself to go into the deep details of various legal events around “Digital Rights”, “Copy Protection”, and other such hot-button subjects will say the word “Sony” dozens of times in such rants.

A contributor to how HDMI (a video format in use today) has a contingency for allowing the device to produce shittier resolution if it suspects you’re making a copy? Sony. The reason that some devices will refuse to work with others because it sees a “copyright bit”? Sony. Meetings that occurred years ago where there was an attempt to make hard drives aware of files and prevent certain “types” from being copied onto them? Sony was in that room. Sony’s always in the room, always has someone in there, ready to suggest the most asinine, hare-brained, overcompensating actions to guarantee that the customer, ultimately, doesn’t have the ability to do anything with Sony hardware or software that Sony doesn’t like, or which Sony can’t get a per-use fee from.

The fight over the HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray formats is crazy, because all it was ever about wasn’t the quality of the image, or the good compression, or the top-quality sound. It wasn’t about interoperability, it wasn’t about future expansion. It was about greed. It was about who could keep more money flowing in licensing out their format to other companies, and it was about how much copy protection bullshit can we cake onto the discs before the machines are wasting the maximum amount of fossil fuel trying to decode our precious movies. And like I said, Sony’s right in there, pushing Blu-ray, pushing another jammed-up, fucked-up, useless format that has a germ of good innovation surrounded by a ten-foot shit-shell of “gimmie”.

Sony is doing this 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Sony is trying, at every level, to fuck you. This is what they do.

Does Sony have good people in it? Of course it does. Every place has good people in it, well-compensated engineers who do good inventions and come up with brilliant ideas and next-level dreams. The problem is, Sony takes those amazing dreams and turns them into hammers that they slam across their mouths of their customers.

No one event has really caused me to suddenly discuss this. Like I said, it’s the realization that it’s more the whole idea of contempt that bothers me more than one specific entity or another who shows it. Lying in my hospital bed gave me time to mull over things in my life, and I realized that contempt was one of the bad forces in my life, something I show myself occasionally, and I have to rid it out of my life as best I can, one step at a time.

But until I’m successful, I’m going to show contempt for Sony. Trace it back. Look it up. Sony makes life worse. They’ve worked hard to make life worse and life is worse for them being around.

Fuck Sony.

Categorised as: jason his own self

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  1. Jon-o says:


    As someone who used a minidisc recorder for years, suffering through the roadblocks Sony put in front of me, I agree with everything you’ve said. Why anyone should spend money to a company that’s out to restrict what they do like that is beyond me.

  2. Shii says:

    Sony needs to be slammed with antitrust and slapped with class-action and beat up until they have to win their customers over again.

  3. leahpeah says:

    contempt is a sneaky one. i’ll be rolling my eyes at something and not even realize it. but the most important thing in my life is honesty, so if there is contempt there, i want to see it and own it.

    sony is on my hate list. i also have their products all over the house. i’ve used their cameras for about 10 years and loved the quality of images. but a company that tries to make my life harder so that i’ll play within their rules = sucks. if you are really at the forefront of new technology, help the little guy/gal with no funding out so he/she can get it out there and improve things and move things forward.

    first on my hate list? walmart. you can feel the contempt being thrown at you before you even park your car in the lot.

  4. JeffH says:

    Thank you for saying it! I hate sony with a passion, and this was before the hd war. Always taking/stealing ideas from other companies and shoving their crap. DIE SONY!

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