Wednesday, December 18, 2002

Never Enough Embedded MIDIs Rants Department


I was just checking out some songs by a Norwegian industrial black metal band called MeZZerschmitt. Apparently they're a collaboration between members of Mayhem and Red Harvest, and sound somewhere between Rammstein and Totenmond. (I kinda wish that they'd come out and state they're anti-Nazi, like Totenmond does, rather than wussing out with an "apolitical" stance, but the music itself is great.)

So while I'm listening to this brutal metal with harsh German lyrics, I find myself browsing the web, and came across the home page of a fellow tranny. And I'm eager to check her out, except for one thing: she has an inline (that is, embedded) MIDI file playing the Peanuts theme. ALL OVER THE METAL I WAS LISTENING TO. And there was no way to turn it off but to close the page.

Do people who use MIDIs in such a fashion--and with no means to turn them off--stop to think for a second that giving a webpage a soundtrack might actually cost them visitors? That perhaps we like to listen to our own music favorites while browsing websites? That using inline MIDIs is an imposition that could well be resented? I can only guess not.

Furthermore, I've noticed that inline MIDIs tend to be most popular with Christian websites. Seriously. Check out my old NutNet site, and search for the phrase "MIDI ALERT." You'll see what I mean.

I will defend only one use of inline MIDIs in a webpage, but only because I'm a SubGenius, and because Ivan Stang uses MIDIs of DEVO, Jimi Hendrix, Captain Beefheart, and other classic superior mutants. But even then, damn it, it'd be nice if you could only turn that shit off and crank your own tunes.

Maybe the time has come to find that switch that turns the audio off in Internet Explorer. But the fact that I need to locate it is... well, kind of absurd, rather like wearing earplugs because your roommate sings show tunes off-key. This sentiment might betray my anarchist leanings, but: There aught to be a law.

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