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Monday, July 31, 2006

US soldiers are posting videos of Iraq on You Tube

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/technology/5226254.stm

The US Department of Defense doesn't like it, obviously. "The military has an interest in its reputation and its image. When the popularity of these prurient, violent videos starts to eclipse their ability to control the image, then a concern arises" a spokesman bellowed.

But at least we get to see a different side of the war than the Disney version Fox News puts out.

Day of the Longtail

Trailer for the Longtail - Tim's reading it at the moment.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Want to be famous? Get on MySpace

Check out this band...I hope they make it big off the back of their perseverance, commitment and originality....playing impromptu London gigs on top of their car (and not a particularly cool one at that)!

Word is spreading through their presence on 'social networking' site MySpace - http://www.myspace.com/summerholidaymusic. For a virtually unknown band they already have 2051 friends (as at 26th July 2006) and with their random (but effective) outdoor performances and online viral activity off the back of this and MySpace this number is likely to grow.

They're also mentioned in this week's Urban Junkies newsletter...http://www.urbanjunkies.com/lon/current.html

The only frustration (which somehow adds to their kudos) is that you don't know when/where to find them next...

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

A modern day fairytale

Once upon a time (2005), the guy who created Scrubs made a new sitcom pilot for Warner Brothers called Nobody's Watching - an in-jokey show about two sitcom fans who try to write their own while being followed by reality TV cameras. It has echoes of the Truman Show, Seinfeld and Friends, amongst other things, I'd say.

It never got any further than the pilot stage but instead was posted onto You Tube where it gained a following and apparently 300,000 views. And happy ending! Following its online success, the show is going to be picked up for a series.

It's not the first time a website has spawned a show, rather than the other way around - a recent example is The Law of the Playground (‘not as funny as it thinks it is’ – Radio Times).

But instead of being picked up for television, NBC - who previously objected to You Tube hosting copyrighted material on their site - have comissioned a series of webisodes to be shown only on the web.

It's an interesting turn of events; it's just that I think the pilot got dropped for a reason.

Monopoly ditches cash, goes plastic - Engadget

Monopoly ditches cash, goes plastic - Engadget

Suspect someone will win an award for this...

VISA have done a version of Monopoly with no money, you pay for everything by card. I think with PIN numbers!

It's your call

It's your call

Interesting - this is the kind of thing that most government departments would take out half a page in a consumer paper for. Wonder if it was the guys from upstairs who ran this.

I hope the international salesperson of the year got some money out of it!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

YouTube sued over video

YouTube sued over video

Interesting article - Youtube users are uploading copyrighted content. Rights holders have decided that this is a bad thing. Therefore they're trying to sue.

Problem is that there is no money being made by any of the video providers at the moment. It'll be interesting to see how anyone manages to. Last stat I saw was that YouTube is burning through over £2 million worth of bandwidth a day. I'm not sure advertising will be enough to save them - £700 odd million a year is a tough sum to capture out of the overall market.

Will they crash and burn? By no means certain. The infrastructre and brand they have created could be repurposed to deliver a VOD version of Netflix, destroying Blockbusters et al.

Everyman

Good ad - promoting an important benefit for all men

Friday, July 14, 2006

Myspace on The Daily Show

Very funny video (although don't let me prejudice you) from The Daily Show. And it doesn't even have George Bush in it.


Tuesday, July 11, 2006

SMS service

Springwise newsletter 11 July 2006: "Parker's, a UK publisher of car pricing guides, introduced its SMS Price Check in 2004. To check the price of a car, users text the word 'price' and the license plate number to 80806. Parker's then texts back exactly what model and year the car is, and what the going prices are if purchased new or second-hand, in good and in bad condition, plus what the trade price is. The service is accessible on all mobile phones and all UK networks, and is charged at GBP 1.50 per valuation. "

MediaGuardian.co.uk | Media | The big internet streaming question

MediaGuardian.co.uk | Media | The big internet streaming question

Some good questions here - how far should regulation go on the internet?

WIth the sudden and seemingly unstoppable rise of social media, we will see more and more independent micro publishers putting their material on the internet. I haven't read the terms and conditions of You Tube (though as usual, I have signed up), but I'm sure legal responsibility for the content is down to the person who uploaded it.
Can OFCOM really be expected to police every single video that is uploaded onto the internet? Could someone get in trouble for uploading video that offends people and breaks broadcasting rules?
Sometimes it sounds interesting working in law. This doesn't sound like one of them. Laws already exist against obscene material and libel. These will not be changed by the medium in which the offense is initiated. The only change is that people won't have to follow the far stricter regulations around broadcasting - technically you're distributing data.

Enforcement might get a little silly if they were to try it too.

Friday, July 07, 2006

Are Google Communists?

I'll never find the article again, but I read an interesting one suggesting Google's strategy was like Cuba's in the Missile Crisis.

In the last year or two they've launched email, blogging, online spreadsheets and word processors, a Paypal type payment system and even chat (meaning they had get rid of one of their founding principles - "We don't do chat").

And there's a lot of speculation about what they're up to, what their grand plan is, and in particular whether they're going to try to compete with Microsoft with a full suite of server-side Office programmes and possibly a browser-based OS.

But this article wondered if they didn't have any such ambitions and are instead just scaring Microsoft with the possibilities of what they could be up to. Personally I'm just looking forward to gMinesweeper coming out.

eBay Bans Sellers from Using Google Checkout

eBay Bans Sellers from Using Google Checkout

Quite interesting little titbit. eBay owns Paypal, so it's not surprising that they cut the use of Google Checkout on their own site.

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

iMedia Connection: MySpace in the Marketing Mix

iMedia Connection: MySpace in the Marketing Mix

So many articles like this on MySpace. Basically it says 'MySpace is something new' nothing more. There is no answer to the title of this article, apart from the fact that there is no accepted answer and that the author has no idea.

To be fair, I don't either, but I'm not writing big long articles trying to look clever.

Just short ones.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Don't look now but David Cameron might have a sensible suggestion

http://media.guardian.co.uk/mediaguardian/story/0,,1811028,00.html
(Bottom of the page)

Daniel
"Now, I'm not saying Osama Bin Laden is a better person than Ben Elton, but at least he's lived his life by a consistent set of ethical principles."