2012 was a big year for the GIF. The animated file format, once mainly associated with GeoCities "under construction" pages and the mid-90s "dancing baby," exploded in popularity thanks to the blogging platform Tumblr. GIFs have become ubiquitous -- summarizing a year in sports; explaining economic policy; endlessly repeating cringe-worthy moments; and even teaching us music history.
We talk with Joshua Carrafa, creator of the Music History in GIFs blog -- and Chadwick Matlin, author of a recent piece in The New Republic called "Inside the GIF Industrial Complex" about why GIFs have become so popular, whether they're art, and how music might be seeping into the traditionally silent medium.
In This Episode: We take a look at the internet phenomenon of GIFs and how they relate to music. Chadwick Matlin, senior editor for Reuters Opinion and Joshua Carrafa, creator of the “Music History in Gifs” Tumblr, explain the popularity of these animated image files that endlessly repeat.
And: He’s best known for writing landmark biographies of presidents Teddy Roosevelt and Ronald Reagan, but Edmund Morris’ latest book, called This Living Hand, features quite a bit of writing on music. He stops by for a discussion about Beethoven and more.