I first learned about shaky cam during my short tenure as a camera department intern on the set of Fear Itself, an awful horror television series which was shot in Edmonton. During one scene, I noticed that the first camera assistant was constantly unlocking and locking the tripod while the operator was shooting. I asked him during the break why he was doing that, and he said it was a technique to make the shot look more stylish. For argument's sake, I'll assume the director, who was Brad Anderson on that episode, instructed the camera department to use the technique. At the time, I couldn't figure out why any director would want the camera to be constantly moving during a simple scene where two people are talking. I now have a theory.I believe that the director was a little confused. I'm betting that he had seen this technique employed in such big hits as Saving Private Ryan and The Blair Witch Project, and thought it worked really well, so decided to try it out. Besides, a whole crapload of other directors in Hollywood were using it too for so many years, so it must be effective, right? I mean, directors in Hollywood are pretty smart, so they wouldn't just adopt a technique that could possibly ruin the look of their film unless it was really good.I'm sure the person reading this is smart enough to understand why shaky cam works only in specific situations, so I'm not going to bother explaining that. So congratulations, apparently you're smarter than a whole bunch of dumbass directors in Hollywood today. If you made a movie, at least we wouldn't get motion sickness from it. But there's a much bigger issue here. It has to do with Hollywood's tendency for filmmakers to follow suit on any gimmicky new thing that comes up if it was involved in any way with a film that made a lot of money.I'm not a big Spielberg fan, in fact I think he's kinda overrated, but you can't deny his ability to make films that make money. He's broke the film box office earnings record three times in his career. First with Jaws, then E.T., then Jurassic Park. Of course, those movies have all spawned copycats. I'm not just talking about concepts or storylines that are similar; those are obvious. I'm talking about movies that copy the artistic techniques, like in camera, editing, special effects, etc. For example, Jurassic Park started a huge wave of movies that used CGI (computer-generated imagery) in all kinds of crazy ways. If Jurassic park would've bombed, directors would have been afraid to integrate CGI for at least a few years down the road, if at all.The use of shaky cam in Saving Private Ryan (and The Blair Witch Project, and some other stuff too) created the same situation. The problem is, there's not that many Spielbergs out there that have the talent to recognize when a technique is necessary, and when it's not. Just like with CGI, the shaky cam technique was way overused, and used in situations that have no place for it at all. I've seen movies where every shot uses shaky cam (well actually, I can't be sure because I've turned the movie off before I've gotten to the end of it). Anyway, my point is that unless you're trying to create the look of a documentary, or the shot is a point of view of someone running, or there's an explosion happening right beside the characters, keep the camera still. And get some of your own techniques that would actually work for what you're trying to do. Film is an art form. Remember? Be an artist already.