Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Getting it off my chest with no desire to look at hers

No, not me! I'm talking about YouTube! I followed a link to a polymer clay video that was posted there and I had this idea to do a blog entry about some of the really wonderful things I found. But my enthusiasm for that idea soon gave way to disgust after a few more clicks of my mouse. Don't get me wrong, there are some wonderful polymer clay related videos on that site. At the risk of offending the ones I don't name ( I just don't have the time or energy to hunt down all those links), I was impressed by Cynthia Tinapple's caning demo, Maggie Maggio's color mixing info, Suzanne Ivester's extruded cane, and the polymer clay butterflies made by the British ladies were absolutely charming. I could listen to them talk all day! There's lots of good things on YouTube!

But, one set of videos in particular, made me cringe. I won't link to them but, if you've ever done a search for polymer clay on YouTube, I'm sure you've seen them. They're short, less than 30 seconds long, and it's hard to believe that so much misinformation can be packed into such a small time frame. I only watched two of them and here are just a few of the things (with plenty of extra sarcasm added by me) that caused my head to spin like Linda Blair in The Exorcist:

1. Polymer clay can be pretty pricey so it's best to use the clear clay in the middle of your beads and save the colors for the outside.

Now that's interesting! I wasn't aware that anyone was making "clear" clay so she must have been referring to translucent, right? And since when is translucent clay so much less "pricey" than the colors?

2. It's perfectly acceptable to spread out uncured clay all over a wooden table while you're working with it.

All I could think was if you're planning on refinishing your furniture soon, this is a great way to strip off all of that pesky old varnish.

3. You should bake your beads at 275 degrees for 12 minutes. And, if you're in a hurry, 10 minutes would be fine, too.

I really think the clay manufacturers could save themselves some money on printing costs if they'd just leave the baking instructions off the packages. Let's all just bake it for however long we feel like, okay?

But, what really made me angry was the fact that all of these short video clips were just "teasers" to entice a customer into purchasing the full-length DVD's featuring their resident "expert". At the risk of getting nasty hate mail, this person is NOT an "expert" by any stretch of the imagination and I would go so far as to say she hasn't taken the time to acquire the knowledge necessary to teach anyone how to work with clay. I doubt that many people have lined up to purchase this DVD. I really hope they haven't. It's enough to set polymer clay back a few dozen years!

Update: I did a bit of further research and it appears that the company who is responsible for making these "how-to's" is NOT actually selling them. I guess those site ads must pay pretty well! I was able to find out, from their website, that their "goal is to provide our users with qualified, trustworthy video content, a place on the Internet where you know that what you see is not idle speculation by a random amateur, but rather someone who really knows what they're talking about." I'm feeling like it's time to hang up my clay gun after reading that.


Barbara Forbes-Lyons said...

Reminds me of another online 'personality' that re-brands other techniques as their own and sells DVDs and other instructional materials for things that are readily available and FREE online. Oh, and they spam message boards constantly. ERGH.

Kim Cavender said...

Change of heart - I just realized you can rate these clips. There's too many to list them all but here's one to get you started if you want the opportunity to view them and form your own opinion. Maybe I'm being too harsh? What do YOU think?


Tammy said...

Hey, those are some real experts...I'm impressed! Maybe I can be one of them and show people how to fire metal clay with my handy dandy bic lighter!!

Judy said...

ODL, Kim, get that off your blog. The link sends you to the video alright, but did you notice the 10 minute commercial by Outback Steakhouse???? That's how they are getting paid for putting this up. Even if you just go to rate the thing, it immediately begins the commercial and is considered a "click" for payment.

Kim Cavender said...

Jude, This is just a link to YouTube. I think Expert V. is only making money when people go to their web site and watch the videos from there. I 'm pretty sure that YouTube only allows ads on their site to make money for THEM. When I click on this link, it takes me right to the video and I didn't see anything about Outback. I would like to go there soon and eat some salmon and have a few raspberry margaritas though!

Linda Peterson said...

Hey Kim,

Just read your blog...Have to say that is amazing that they can do that....but on a different note...

I'm tagging you. If you want to participate heres how.

Love your blog!!! Love your beads - you're a great artist.

If you chose to play, here's how:

1. Link to the tagger.
2. Share 7 random or weird facts about yourself.
3. Tag 7 people, post their names and links to their blogs on your blog.
4. Tell the 7 people you tagged by posting “Tag you’re it” on their blogs in their comments box and explain the rules to them. Nobody is obligated! Just have fun.

Jai Johnson said...

I'm glad to know I'm not the only one who thought that video (and others produced by that company) was HIDEOUS. And when you search on you tube, they are all over the place...I've learned now to just ignored any videos by EV. --Jai

Ulrike said...

You are kidding.
I once saw a skinnerblend with the fold NOT send first into the pastamachine - that may happen.
But what you are describing, in your very humorous way, is unbelievable.
I stopped watching these videos, when I first found them, after 5 seconds. But now I'm willing to watch them all until the end - brrrrrr! (I want to know what this expert is doing)

Raven's Clay said...

Kim, my dear, the universe is big and we can only control a small piece of it. *ducks the pound of clay thrown from Kim*

But perhaps there is something one can do to counteract all the poly-evil on YouTube... There are often "counter" videos on YT, where someone does a commentary, or "let's get the info straight" reply to another video. Perhaps someone *coughyoucough* could post something like that on YT? Just a thought.

And thanks for bringing all this c##p on YT to our attention... I never knew stuff like that was there.

Wes Warren said...

I can't help it...I have to see them all now!

Wes said...

Shucks, Guys...I was KIDDING! lol

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