The peeps at the "Freakonomics" blog posted a response/discussion regarding the Wall Street Journal's recent ballet article, "On Their Toes and Asking for Trouble, Self-Taught Ballerinas Go Online." Both are interesting reads, and may warrant some extra discussion here! (mods, please move if this is more appropriate somewhere else).
June 9, 2008, 11:52 am
Ballerinas and Information Asymmetry
By Stephen J. Dubner
We’ve written quite a bit about various information asymmetries — i.e., when one party in a transaction has a lot more information than another — and how the Internet is very good at correcting that asymmetry. Among the examples we used were the cost of term-life insurance, the price of coffins, and real-estate listings.
The Wall Street Journal recently published an interesting piece about how the Internet is attacking another sort of information asymmetry: ballet instruction...More
On Their Toes and Asking for Trouble,
Self-Taught Ballerinas Go Online...
The Wall Street Journal
By EMILY STEEL
June 3, 2008
Since Louis XIV established the Royal Academy of Dance in 1661, formal ballet has never been a self-taught art. Aspiring dancers have been trained under the supervision of professionals. And ever since the pointe shoe was invented in the early 1800s, only girls who had spent three years or so taking lessons ever got permission from their ballet teachers to buy toe shoes.
But now Web videos are shaking loose the rigid hierarchy of the ballet world. Aspiring ballerinas are recording videos of themselves dancing and posting the results for people to look at and critique on the Internet.
Young hopefuls put video cameras on their kitchen or bathroom floor, then do simple exercises in pointe shoes. The videos, which generally aren't more than a minute long, attract viewer chat pointing out mistakes and offering tips.More