Objectivity while judging entertainment.
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Posted 11/27/12
Do you believe that one movie being better than another can be fact? Is it fact that Mozart's music is better than Nicki Minaj's? Is it fact that Mona Lisa is better than Figure 4?

The equation 4x4=16 is as factual as my favorite movie being better than your favorite movie.

Do you believe that there is an absolute good and bad in entertainment? That one song being better than another can be fact and not just an opinion? I don't believe that at all. I'm more of an aesthetic relativist. What do you think? Share your thoughts.
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Posted 11/27/12
Personally I believe that art is anything other than non-standard communication created with the intent of evoking emotion. A sunset can be beautiful but it is not art. A machine can look cool, but it is meant to serve a purpose other than feeling cool. The more powerfully an artwork evokes an emotion and the more accurately the artwork evokes the intended emotion, the more effective (better) the artwork is.

By that definition, there are some movies and forms of entertainment which can quantitatively be found to be "better" than others. How many people cried at Bravehart or Bambie vs. how many people were scared while watching "the Happening." How many people laugh during Spaceballs vs. Turner and Hooch. Of course you have to weight that by the number of viewers, but there you have a somewhat objective ruler for measuring the quality of an art.

And you must know that the movie and music industries, even the news media are all in it for the MONEY and do such calculations all the time. That is why so many crappy movies are direct-to-dvd, it is projected beforehand that it will not make enough money to warrant advertising costs. That is why good TV shows get taken off the air in favor of cheaper-to-produce shows (people will watch the best thing on at that moment, but are not too likely to turn off the TV entirely). It is all an equation.
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Posted 11/27/12
Well arguably nothing is truly objective as theory simply suggests that there has been no evidence which disproves the theory in question. One could say nothing is solidified as there is always a possibility that something could be discovered that flips our understanding of the world completely on its head. For now though allow us to take objectivity into consideration at its most basic level.

Art is in itself defined as an expression. There is no objectivity in expression, as the very definition of objectivity is interpretation without the influence of one's personal feelings. That being said I don't believe it is possible to truly quantify the value of any entertainment piece. I of course don't have to explain again though, as paradox already has, the importance to the media at large in being able to trick people into believing you can quantify that value.
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Posted 11/27/12 , edited 11/27/12
Think of it this way; like tastebud... when we're young it's not developed... when we get older we can taste more refined things... some wines taste better than others, while to the underdeveloped taster, every wine tastes the same.


This is the same thing with art and music; when we're young, stupid and simple things sound good to us like the ABC song or Britney Spears... but when we get older our tastes will develop into something deeper and more sensual.



Whether we like it or not; there are people who are born to be writers/artists. These creative people can see things that normal people don't.

Just like some people can tell the difference between wines or perfect pitch.
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Posted 11/27/12
No it's all subjective, and subjected to change and renewed criticism over a period of time. nonetheless they serve as a foundation for how we judge art by certain standards.
Posted 11/27/12
I wouldn't compare an entertainment because if a source of it could make me laugh hard or entertained, it is an entertainment and it succeeded in proving and or portraying itself to be a source of entertainment right? there is no successful entertainment unless you weigh it by the money it makes and people who blah blah out of it.etc but it must be able to entertain at least to the least I find it approving. by judging it, I wouldn't compare but whether if it is a source of what it says or not. if I switch on the tv, it better be entertaining
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Posted 11/27/12
Art, like anything, is subject to the individual whims of those who view it. Any media, be it visual, audio, or mixed, can be viewed and interpreted by two people and neither will appreciate it or understand it in the same way, and those two views will always be different than the person who created it. The point of art, as someone said further up the thread, is to convey a certain emotional response from the viewer. The problem is, not everyone experiences the same thing when they experience it.

By that notion, it is impossible to judge any two objects of art (paintings, songs, movies, or anything else) and be anywhere close to a definitive placement of their respective values to everyone. Individual taste, perception, and thought will always trump a generalized categorization of such things every time. The best you can do is group things you yourself like and always preface it with said list being simply your own personal choice and not in any way the absolute truth or an unwavering fact.
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Posted 12/1/12 , edited 12/1/12
Once you define "better," yeah, all you need to do is figure out if the thing you are talking about has the same properties as "better." Notice that a mathematical equation is a fact only if the definitions of the things on the left match the things on the right. Granted, definitions of "better" change between people, but if a person defines better, then it is a fact that certain things will meet the criteria, and others won't. So yes, all you need for objectivity is understanding of criteria. Short of that, I can't think of anything that's not subjective.

Edit: In short, objectivity is your choice.
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Posted 12/1/12
Entertainment that promotes a healthy lifestyle is better than entertainment that promotes an unhealthy lifestyle.
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Posted 12/7/12

lordseth23 wrote:

Entertainment that promotes a healthy lifestyle is better than entertainment that promotes an unhealthy lifestyle.


"Healthy" or "unhealthy" in what regards? What one considers a healthy lifestyle another may consider an unhealthy lifestyle and vice versa. That can be just as relative to the individual as well. Also, everyone doesnt take entertainment into account when making lifestyle decisions. I consider entertainment just that, entertainment and nothing else.
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Posted 12/7/12

CLarose wrote:


lordseth23 wrote:

Entertainment that promotes a healthy lifestyle is better than entertainment that promotes an unhealthy lifestyle.


"Healthy" or "unhealthy" in what regards? What one considers a healthy lifestyle another may consider an unhealthy lifestyle and vice versa. That can be just as relative to the individual as well. Also, everyone doesnt take entertainment into account when making lifestyle decisions. I consider entertainment just that, entertainment and nothing else.


I think it all depends on the individual and their maturity level. If an person is mature enough to enjoy entertainment without being influenced by any negative aspects of it, then it isn't necessarily a bad thing. The problem is that questionable forms of entertainment are continually being thrown in front of young people who are not mature enough to recognize that it shouldn't be associated with reality, and then the child becomes a problem to society from poor psychological development. All forms of entertainment can be considered equal in the eyes of a mature adult, but unhealthy forms of entertainment should not be considered better than healthier alternatives due to its negative effects on child development.
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Posted 1/7/13
That can be a philosophical argument. A person can argue current music is better than minimalism music or the other way around...but if you look a the bigger picture, trend, creativity, a thoughtfulness that was put into a piece of work a person can tell if that type of artistic expression is good or not. yeah, that might be labeled as just an opinion but aren't they all? Some people like to be half ass, and make it seem like they are being an artistic but really just trying to find an excuse to cover up shit quality, I guess that's just up to the audience to decide...wow this reasoning is getting no where.

Personally, I think anyone in modern times that try to use minimalism as artistic expression is half assing it, *cough* Bjork* *cough*. John Cage and a whole others has done it, it was cool and innovative back then. Now it just sounds like children's play
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Posted 1/11/13

theYchromosome wrote:

Once you define "better," yeah, all you need to do is figure out if the thing you are talking about has the same properties as "better." Notice that a mathematical equation is a fact only if the definitions of the things on the left match the things on the right. Granted, definitions of "better" change between people, but if a person defines better, then it is a fact that certain things will meet the criteria, and others won't. So yes, all you need for objectivity is understanding of criteria. Short of that, I can't think of anything that's not subjective.

Edit: In short, objectivity is your choice.


I never thought of it like that, but it's so true..... The more definite the criteria, the more objective the comparison.
So then, is there potentially a way to measure all criteria of two individual things at once?
If you can only compare things one-dimensionally, is it really a valid comparison? In short, are the results of an IQ test or a music competition really a valid assessment?

Anyway, thanks for your post, it made me think about assessment in a different light.
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Posted 1/11/13 , edited 1/11/13

qweruiop wrote:

I never thought of it like that, but it's so true..... The more definite the criteria, the more objective the comparison.
So then, is there potentially a way to measure all criteria of two individual things at once? If you can only compare things one-dimensionally, is it really a valid comparison?

Maybe you mistyped, but I'm a little confused about what it means to "measure" a criteria (I would think you measure the things, not the criteria). Maybe you mean to measure a thing based on all possible criteria? In that case yes, it's theoretically possible, but nothing short of the Human Instrumentality Project can really deliver that. Everyone would need to have the exact same criteria, which means that they would need to have the exact same information, which means a complete understanding of what anyone would mean when they give a criteria and thing to be judged by the criteria (or criterion).

If you're comparing two things based on multiple criterion, then (to go back to the math analogy) what you're probably doing is something akin to a system of equations. You are taking multiple qualities that the two things have and comparing them. If the qualities are defined and the means of comparison is defined, then it's basically just checking to see "if the numbers match." For example, if I wanted to make the argument that blue is better than red, I might define my terms this way: "blue" is light with wavelength of 450 and "red" is light with wavelength of 620. "Better" means lower wavelength. Thus, finding out if the statement "blue is better than red" is true amounts to seeing which wavelength is shorter, and thus, blue is undeniably better than red given my definitions. The problem comes with the fact that not everyone defines "better" or even "blue" or "red" the same way. Understanding another person completely is not something I've ever experienced, and thus I don't think I can say that I've ever been completely, undeniably objective about something. I can make some pretty damn good guesses though, so I think I've gotten close. When I say 1+1=2, I am VERY confident that my definitions and the definitions of others match, and thus I am VERY confident that the opinion "1+1=2" is an objective one. All in all, everything comes down to definitions. Basically, any argument is just a discussion on how things should be defined, because once you do that, it's just a matter of bookkeeping. Whether the comparison is "one dimensional" or "multi-dimensional" doesn't factor into it. That just means there's more "numbers" to check.


In short, are the results of an IQ test or a music competition really a valid assessment?


Well, I'd have to say that insofar as everyone agrees on what is being assessed and how to assess it, yes, it's absolutely valid. Does everyone agree on these things? I can't know for sure, but I'd guess no. An IQ test assesses a person's ability to take an IQ test. A music competition assesses a person's ability to match judges' criteria more than their opponents. Criteria and conception of things change from person to person, so on the whole, it's subjective. This is a bit of an over-simplification, but it's so close to being true that I'll just state it as it pops into my head: If I only consider myself, then everything is objective. Likewise, if I only consider one other person, then everything is objective. If I only consider two or more people in complete agreement, everything is objective. Opinions are either true or false. When people argue about which of Lady Gaga or Metallica is better, what they are really doing is arguing about what "better music" actually is. Or anyway, that's how I see it.
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