The censorship of the Falcon / Winter Soldier shows that the flow is temporary

There was a little controversy earlier this week when Disney + appeared to self-criticize an episode of The hawk and the winter soldierremoving blood and documentary violence.

The change was spotted by an eagle’s viewer on Reddit and sparked much speculation as to whether such changes could be related to age rating settings in the user’s profile. It was finally confirmed that the company made a simple mistake and replaced the episode on its server with the disinfected version. The original episode cut has been restored and everything is fine with the world. However, the whole drama raises some awkward questions.

Most obviously, it shows the extent to which modern media is really a ephemeral phenomenon. In an age of streaming and custom digital, nothing really exists in its final form. The first day updates were once the responsibility of video games, but now they seem to be part of the language of cinema and television as well. Cats An update with “enhanced visual effects” was famously released while the film was still in theaters.

To be clear, this is not a new phenomenon. The production schedule on The X-Files It was so tight that the special effects in the episode “Tunguska” were updated between the broadcasts on the opposite shores, with producer Frank Spotnitz admitting that “different people saw different versions of the series”. In a notorious way, George Lucas has spent decades tormenting his own Star Wars trilogy, a problem exacerbated by the refusal to make the original (and unmodified) versions readily available.

To be clear, there is nothing inherently wrong with going back and adjusting to a previous job. Insisting that there should be only one version of a particular movie or TV show would mean losing miracles like the final version of Ridley Scott Blade Runner or even redemptive efforts such as Zack Snyder’s Justice League. There is something to be said for presenting options to viewers, such as the packaging of all three versions of the Francis Ford Coppola revelation now in a single collection.

The censorship of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier at Disney + shows the permanence of the media, the fragility of the television movie retention

Via The Direct.

The arrival of the streaming era should theoretically be the perfect time to keep the movie. As the various studios set up their own platforms, built from their established brands, it makes sense to fill their libraries with as much material as possible. After all, services like Disney + and HBO Max are not limited to the same logic as older video stores like Blockbuster. The subscriber is not wandering in a physical store, but in an infinitely huge digital warehouse.

At one point during Inside, comedian Bo Burnham describes the Internet as “everything all the time”. It speaks to the demand that modern social media makes on the scope of human attention, but it also speaks to the infinite memory and capacity of the internet as a conceptual space. At one point inside The social network, Erica Albright (Rooney Mara) warns Mark Zuckerberg (Jesse Eisenberg), “The internet is not written in pencil, Mark. It is written in ink. ”

So how is it that so much of the modern media landscape feels so permanent? How is something like that The girlfriend’s experience, a film by Oscar winner Steven Soderbergh, impossible to find on any streaming or digital service? Because the public can not watch Mississippi Masala, a movie starring Denzel Washington, nowhere on the internet? How is Britney Spears’ vehicle? Crossroads just disappeared from an internet provider? These are not dark or marginal films. Why can’t people pay to watch them?

To put it bluntly, the natural resources market has collapsed. Wonder Woman 1984 reportedly was the highest-selling DVD of 2021, with 681,479 copies. It performs even better on Blu-ray, selling 965,983 units. However, even combined, these figures are a fraction of his 7,000,000 DVD copies Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part I. were sold in 2011 or the 10,000,000 DVD copies that Avatar changed in 2010. As natural resources have decreased, flow has increased.

There are anecdotal reports from within the industry that studios are moving away from the assumption that every movie or TV show needs a physical release. Historian Jerry Beck suggested that Warner Bros. away from the DVD and Blu-ray releases of her films. Screenwriter Tom Jolliffe has written about how his latest work has bypassed physical releases in favor of streaming releases.

To be fair, there are certainly arguments for this shift from natural means to flow. In a broad sense, flow seems to generate less waste and require fewer raw materials than a natural media circulation, even if there is some indication that digital projection has its own environmental value. On a personal level, it’s a lot easier to save a Google Chrome or Amazon Fire Stick than an entire physical library, especially if living space is a problem.

However, this change gives content providers a high level of confidence in maintaining and protecting their libraries, as well as incidents like the one that happened with The hawk and the winter soldier suggest that these companies do not necessarily deserve this trust. Disney + is missing more than 700 of the company’s movies and TV shows and has been editing others. As of March 2021, Paramount + was missing individual TV show seasons and individual franchise installments.

There are suggestions that these companies have no real interest in archiving and maintenance, even for iconic properties. The Star Trek The brand is an important selling point for Paramount +, with the company taking pride in its plans to ensure that the franchise is “always active” in attracting new subscribers. However, while the original Star Trek and The next generation both have been remastered for high definition, the company has not yet invested in remastering Deep Space Nine the Traveler.

The censorship of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier at Disney + shows the permanence of the media, the fragility of the television movie retention

All of this is at the heart of trust in huge companies as curators of cultural history. It undermines any sense of permanence in film and television, as what is available at a given time is dictated by the economic and political priorities of the companies that own both the media and the platform on which it will be distributed. In a way, it is an extension of the larger issues by reducing such media to simple “content”, erasing any inherent sense of value.

For decades, film and television have been treated as inherently consumable media with no real value beyond the immediate profit they could make. The Martin Scorsese Film Foundation reports that “half of all American films made before 1950 and more than 90 percent of films made before 1929 are lost forever.” Improvements in natural media, such as the development of acetate-based films, have helped. However, the same thing happened with the emergence of secondary markets such as television and later home media.

Over the decades, there have been extensive restoration and recovery projects rooted in the idea that people other than studios can possess physical copies of the media. Missed episodes of Doctor Who have been reconstructed from recordings from the television broadcast, and even from copies of episodes that ended up in the hands of private collectors. Star Wars Fans have created “specialized” versions of the films from various natural sources.

Many of them are lost in the transition from the natural to the flow. The hawk and the winter soldier is part of the most successful franchise in the world. It was a huge success in itself, giving the streaming service its premiere with the most views up to that point. However, this error was not detected by an internal audit. It was spotted by a random Reddit user, who was able to compare it to an archived copy of the original, a possible pirate as there are no scheduled physical media releases.

The censorship of The Falcon and the Winter Soldier at Disney + shows the permanence of the media, the fragility of the television movie retention

What would happen if the user did not have a copy of the original in hand for comparison? What if it was an episode of a show that was not popular enough to be widely disseminated through piracy, which is an incredible movie preservation center? What if it was a property with fanatical fans less obsessed with that kind of detail? What if it was a change in a movie or show that was released years or decades ago, and so the details were less obvious?

These are all deeply troubling questions with potentially disturbing answers. What happened to me The hawk and the winter soldier It was an accident, but it was only captured because it was an accident in one of the highest profile franchises in the world. It would like to have a fan base for other streaming projects in the vicinity of Disney The abandonment the Only murders in the building had you spotted a similar adjustment so quickly and it would have garnered the same level of press coverage causing a correction?

It took decades for the public and the archivists to accept cinema and television as permanent rather than temporary means, to accept that these are cultural objects that must be preserved and preserved. What happened to me The hawk and the winter soldier suggests that perhaps part of this land has been lost in motion towards a unified flow landscape. If the feed is just a repository of content, then this kind of patches can not be considered a surprise.

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