Why is the NFL's Play Into China Being Called Back?

Western content creators know that making deals and getting revenue out of China can be tough.

And it isn't just the little guys.

In December 2016, the National Football League trumpeted a deal to stream NFL games directly on Chinese online platform Sina Weibo (often called "China's Twitter"). 

By June of 2017?

That deal might be off - even before the 2017 pre-season's first kick-off.

In a statement released by China's all-powerful State Administration of Press, Publication, Radio, Film and Television on Thursday June 22, 2017, Sina Weibo and two other major Chinese online portals were told to "shut down" all of their audio-visual program services.

As reported in Bloomberg: "Unsurprisingly, Weibo Corp. dropped in New York on volume almost four times the 20-day average. The stock, down 11 percent at one point."

Why is the NFL's bold play into China being called back?

China-watchers have noticed a definite trend as the 19th National Congress of the Communist Party approaches in October of 2017

President Xi Jinping is consolidating power.

And, apparently the next few months are going to be tense ones for potential targets for increased official scrutiny - like Chinese University administrators and China's major global media players - even if the new attention temporarily distresses Chinese sports fans or roils the markets.

Curses for Every Job on a Film Crew

What drives each member of the crew crazy?

Here's a link to the list - in a convenient "curse you" format.

Lance Weiler's Directory of Immersive Storytelling Tools

Spring of 2017 and Lance Weiler's students at Columbia University are working on immersive adaptions of Sherlock Holmes. So Lance has compiled a list of free services and platforms that his students (and others!) can use.  I'm sharing those with you (thanks Lance).

Directory of new platforms, apps and tools 


Prototyping tools



Build a micro game 


Build an AR geolocational game 


Build an AR experience 


Interactive video 


VR authoring tool 


VR authoring tool


Build a chatbot 


Immersive storytelling platform 


Prototype with IoT


IoT prototyping platform


IoT prototyping platform


Purposeful storytelling 


Shadertoy - for the ambitiously inclined  


Randy Finch's Film Blog:

Thoughts from a film producer about making and distributing films.