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Why Vine's Going to Grow Into Something Huge

óè bit.ly/Vine_2013

Last week I wrote about the launch of Vine, Twitter's new social app that lets you create and share short, looping videos. Like everywhere on the Internet, porn crept its way into Vine's world early on, through hashtags and a lack of checks and balances. That's mostly been fixed by techs at Vine -- at least, you won't see porn pop up in the Editor's Picks again and popular porn-related hashtags have been blocked from the search.

Unfortunately, the early problems with Vine masked the fact that the app is an engaging, creative and somewhat addictive way to shoot and manipulate video. Sure, a lot of the early videos have been pets, stop-motion toy battles and step-by-step recipes in the kitchen, but that doesn't mean it can't be used for so much more.

"That, of course, is the big knock against Vine," writes Wired's Mat Honan. "Like Twitter and Instagram before it, it's easy to denounce Vine as banal. But when a plane landed in the Hudson River or Tahrir Square erupted in violence, the very things once widely considered narcissistic diversions were accepted, and then embraced, as powerful tools for rapidly distributing information and shaping public opinion."

Vine may not be the perfect video app -- there are still some basic features that need to be added -- but at its heart, Vine demonstrates a new way to engage the world around us in ways that we are still imagining. Its ease of use, the consumption rates of short videos and its visually appealing storytelling are all factors that will contribute to its rapid growth.

2013 Super Bowl Ads

óè bit.ly/superbowl_2013

Canadians love Super Bowl ads, but most of the good ones aren't broadcast north of the border. Missed out on all those Super Bowl spots, but too lazy to search around YouTube? Stream all the clips that aired on Super Sunday on-demand through this site.

Video of the Week: Just Blaze's Vinyl Collection -- Crate Diggers

óè bit.ly/justblaze_vinyl

In this episode of Fuse TV's Crate Diggers series, red-hot hip-hop producer Just Blaze shows off his impressive collection of vinyl, which has help him craft his signature sound for everyone from Jay-Z to Kendrick Lamar. He recently collaborated with electronic wiz kid Baauer, and the duo's Big League Tour touches down at the Greenroom on Sunday, Feb, 10. DJ Co-op is also on the bill. Advance tickets are $20 at The Urban Bakery (398 Portage Ave.).

Track of the Week: My Bloody Valentine -- wonder 2

óè bit.ly/MBV_2013

After a 21-year wait, the Axl Rose of shoegazer rock, Kevin Shields, finally has released the long-awaited followup to 1991's genre-defining album Loveless. After plenty of rumours and false starts, Shields unveiled the new album online, crashing the site almost instantly, as eager fans clamoured to get a first listen.

To alleviate some of the pressure on the official My Bloody Valentine website, the entire album has been uploaded to YouTube and is available to stream on-demand. Shields is either living in the past or trying to cash in on his procrastination -- many fans scoffed at the $16 cost of the download, although that didn't stop people from grabbing one of the most anticipated albums of the last two decades as soon as it was available.

Anthony Augustine is a freelance music, technology and pop culture writer who spends way too much time in front of a computer. Got a site you think he should see? Email him at anthony.siteunseen@gmail.com or follow him at twitter.com/anthonya.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition February 7, 2013 C15

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