What Online Videos You’re Watching

// August 17th, 2007

According to a new study from eMarketer, news & current events was the most popular genre of online video downloaded & streamed in 2006, followed closely by movie trailers & music videos.

Video viewers as a percent of overall internet users are projected to climb 10% points to 72% this year. Online video viewers who view video ads will also increase to 81% in 2007, topping out at 90% in 2011 when 165 million Americans will have seen online video ads.

Types of Content Downloaded and/or streamed by US Online Video Viewers, 2006
(% of total online video audience)

News/current events : 13.7%
Movie/TV trailers : 12.0%
Music videos : 10.9%
User-generated videos : 9.4%
Jokes/bloopers : 9.3%
Weather information : 8.0%
Entertainment news & reviews : 7.3%
TV shows (full episodes or clips) : 6.5%
Sports clips/highlights : 6.4%

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Web 2.0 Logos

// August 15th, 2007

I was just messing around with creating some logos & gots to thinkin’…

Web 2.0 logos.
We all know & love them (or do we?)

Here’s a whole bunch of them:
The Logos of Web 2.0

Web 2.0 sites nearly always feel open and friendly and often use small chunks of large type. The colors are bright and cheery ? lots of blue, orange, and what we jokingly call the Official Color of Web 2.0: lime green.

The logos are broken down into the following categories:
The Softies
The Futurists
The Classics
The New Classics

Here’s a great tutorial on how to create your own web 2.0 logo in Photoshop:
Create a Web 2.0 logo using Abobe Photoshop

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RIP Times Select?

// August 8th, 2007

Perhaps its just an unfounded rumor, but ironically, the NY Post broke the story yesterday that the NY Times will shut down its Times Select premium service, which offers access to popular op-eds like Thomas Friedman & Maureen Dowd, as well as the Times Archive for a monthly subscription fee of $7.95. If this is true, the Wall St. Journal would remain as the only major paper to have a subscription service to access some or all of its content instead of going all free. However, rumors abound that with Rupert Murdoch’s acquisition of parent company Dow Jones, WSJ Online will end up becoming either a hybrid model of free & subscription content or an entirely free website.

On a similar note, according to the new report from Veronis Suhler Stevenson, online advertising will surpass newspaper advertising by 2011. The report predicts an online growth rate of 21% each year over the next four years.

Interestingly enough, the report also found that for the 1st time since 1997, overall media consumption per person decreased .5% in 2006 to 3,530 hours. So perhaps the digitalization & disintermediation of media will not actually result in more overall media consumption as some, like myself, might believe. At the end of the day, there’s still only 24 hours in it.

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Annoying Things That Social Networks Do

// August 6th, 2007

Here’s a link to another good blog post on Rohit Bhargava’s Influential Marketing Blog:

What Most Social Networks Do That People Hate

Bhargava starts with a list of 4 annoying things that social networks do, raising the ire of their users. They are as follows:

1) Pretending users don’t belong to other networks
2) Creating custom email messages & inboxes
3) Forgetting about basic usability
4) Forcing unnecessary data collection

As someone who has profiles on a whole slew of social networks, I totally agree with Rohit on this, particularly with respect to usability (MySpace being among the worst in terms of design), and to the emails you get that force you to log in to see your message instead of copying into the body of that email.

Social networks are still emerging as part of our lives, so there’s still plenty of room for improvement out there!

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Take My Show, Please!

// August 6th, 2007


AdAge had a nice article today about the leaking of a variety of fall TV show pilots online last week & how while the broadcast networks are sort of freaking on it, some are actually welcoming it.

In Go Ahead and Watch This Show Illegally, Jenji Kohan (cool ass name girl!), the creator & exec producer of Weeds, is totally cool with the fact that the 1st 4 episodes of the upcoming season of her Showtime show are available through torrent sites:

“Revenue aside, I don’t expect to get rich on Weeds. I’m excited it’s out there. Showtime is great, but it does have a limited audience.”

14.5 million subscribers to be exact. For Showtime, this is actually a plus in bringing wider exposure to the show. The paid cable networks don’t rely on advertising, so getting clips or episodes of their shows out there is essentially free marketing & promotion, which could spur subscriber growth or stronger DVD sales, which are a very lucrative business for them.

Showtime has also inked an exclusive deal with my great friend Netflix to provide the pilot of its new show Californication to subscribers 3 weeks before it premieres on Showtime. Showtime pursued a similar strategy in making episodes of shows like Dexter available on MSN, Yahoo!, etc…

HBO featured the first episode of Flight of the Conchords online before it aired on the cable network or on demand. There are also a whole bunch of Conchords clips on YouTube, which so far, HBO has done nothing about. The show lends itself to online video clips since it features short, hilarious songs from the duo. It’s all about building the buzz & getting it out there for people to see.

Last season, HBO premiered episodes of The Wire (one of my favorite shows ever) on HBO On Demand on Mondays only to show them on the air for the first time the following Sunday. Since The Wire is one of those strong word-of-mouth shows (everyone’s probably had someone like me tell them how great it is), this works to keep the fans pleased & build a stronger audience. The Sopranos doesn’t need this type of exposure b/c everyone already knows that it rules. Best. show. ever.

The article moves on to talk about my favorite company that won’t hire me, Joost, which is getting all sorts of buzz right now. Joost announced a few weeks back that it would feature the entire series of VH1’s I Hate My 30s 2 weeks before it would premiere on the TV network itself.

The rest of the article is very repetitive w/ the same old talking points i.e. Joost wants to change the way people watch TV, how the founders started Kazaa & Skype, etc… A great point that is made however by EVP of Content Strategy & Acquisition Yvette Alberdingk Thijm is:

“All these audiences are going to look for content online. Networks might as well protect the content and also make a little money in the process. Plus, because it’s free, you persuade the consumer to watch on a legal platform.”

NB: A funny thing with piracy now that everything’s going digital is this notion that copyright holders have created that watching something or listening to something is illegal. Isn’t the act of leaking it, the act of posting it, but really the act of selling it at a profit, the illegal act? At least that’s what I thought…

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AdAge’s Power 150: Media & Marketing Blogs

// August 6th, 2007

Here’s AdAge’s Power 150, a ranking list of English-language blogs on media & marketing compiled by Todd Andrlik, a marketing exec & blogger.

Despite the 150 moniker, there are actually 360+ blogs in the ranking, a lot of which I’ve never even heard of.

The rankings are based on Google PageRank (0-10), Bloglines subscribers (1-20), Technorati ranking (1-30), and subjective Todd Points (1-15).

Power 150

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Cheap Ass Food & Movie Madness

// August 3rd, 2007


Allow me to introduce you to 2 of my new favorite sites: Cheap Ass Food & Movie Madness

Cheap Ass Food is:

…for anyone who loves food and doesn?t give a shit about being proper. CheapAssFood.com friends are not your typical four star food tasters, our main goal is to support mom & pop shops. Your neighborhood bagel shop, noodle house, burger joint and street vendors…etc, let people know that good food doesn?t have to be Zagat rated.

Basically, the editors & users submit write-ups & photos of cheap ass food places all over the country & world even. There are some real gems for cheap ass food places as well as some good ass cheap recipes. Love it!

On a hot, humid, cloudy summer day like today in the NYC, I gets to thinking about going to see a movie or two - a nice old double feature. If you want to figure out how to go see a bunch of movies in a row at a theater, Movie Madness is for you.

With movie ticket prices reaching $10 and beyond in most theaters, moviegoers are in an awkward position these days. No one should ever have to fork over $10 to the evil MPAA just to see 85 minutes of whatever Hollywood is currently peddling as entertainment. So what is the avid, but principled, moviegoer to do?

Movie Madness is the answer. The basic premise: see as many movies as you can in one day for the price of a single ticket. Not only will you be standing up for your rights as a moviegoer by withholding tens of dollars from the movie industry, but you will experience a non-stop, thrilling roller-coaster ride of entertainment and adrenaline. It’s practically a sport.

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The 25 Basic Styles of Blogging

// July 31st, 2007

Here’s a link to a great entry on Rohit Bhargava’s Influential Marketing Blog:

The 25 Basic Styles of Blogging… And When To Use Each One

The 25 blogging styles:

1) Insight Blogging
2) Ambition Blogging
3) Meme Blogging
4) Piggyback Blogging
5) Life Blogging
6) Brand Blogging
7) Detractor Blogging 8) Announcement Blogging
9) Link Blogging
10) Video Blogging
11) Photo Blogging
12) Review Blogging
13) Evangelist Blogging
14) List Blogging
15) Survey Blogging
16) Feature Blogging
17) Repost Blogging
18) Guest Blogging
19) Interview Blogging
20) Event Blogging
21) Live Blogging
22) Bridge Blogging
23) Classified Blogging
24) Response Blogging
25) Contact Blogging

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Facebook Goes Down

// July 31st, 2007

So, it appears that Facebook has been down for a few hours, depriving us of some good old fashioned time wasting. What ever will I do now? Ahh, thankfully, I still have Perez & Gawker to keep me busy.. and oh yeah, the REAL WORLD outside!

This was inevitable, really. If you use Facebook often, you’ve probably noticed that it’s been slowing down. For example, on my profile, some iLike songs don’t play immediately or smoothly. Other times, commands are just a bit unresponsive.

Surely, the sheer volume of new applications being installed & embedded into profiles has contributed to this gradual slowdown & now this site outage.

The Guardian’s blog put it rather well: Facebook down? World keeps turning…

The blogosphere has been getting increasingly frustrated with Facebook & now many bloggers are proclaiming that they will cancel their accounts - fed up with being bitten by vampires, being turned into zombies, being pimp slapped, and people buying them little pixelated beers. It’s starting to get annoying… What’s the point of these apps anyway???

As one blogger writes in WTFacebook?:

What is Facebook now? It’s Myspace without the seizure-inducing blinking backgrounds and crappy teenpop music. I’ve come to abhor the direction this once-great enterprise is headed. And it’s not just the official Facebook developers who are to blame; it’s y-o-u.

In short, this allows anyone to create custom applications that introduce themselves into the Facebook architecture. Some are inherently helpful, like “My Flickr,” which allows me to stick a display of the last x number of photos I upload to my Flickr account. There’s also the Twitter application, accomplishing the same purpose as the Flickr application, but with text. Yes, you can even add daily images of adorable cats to your profile.

With the good comes the bad, however. Not a day goes by that I don’t get bugged by some errant application that one of my 595 friends has decided to install. I’ve been offered the option to transform into a zombie; I’ve been bitten by a Facebook vampire; I’ve been asked to hang out at a virtual happy hour; I’ve been poked, hugged, and touched in all sorts of strange and interesting ways; I’ve become someone’s top friend; I’ve been recruited to cyber-save Darfur; and I’ve been hit with a Harry Potter spell. Enough!

With recent research showing that over half of Facebook users aren’t even enrolled in university or college and the 25+ age bracket being its fastest growing demo, why are we being barraged by requests for these childish, annoying apps?

Was opening up Facebook to the masses a good move in the short term to boost traffic & the valuation of the company, but the eventual downfall of the social network in the future? We’ll see, but my hunch is yes.

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Is YouTube a Start-up Being Run in My Basement?

// July 30th, 2007

Is YouTube a start-up company being run in a basement by me & a few of my friends?

No, it’s not. It’s a company that was acquired for over $1.7 billion by a company that has a $160+ billion market cap.

So why is it that they continue to act like one???

From today’s Cynopsis:

Better late than never. Testifying in the high-profile Viacom-Google lawsuit on Friday, a Google lawyer told a federal judge that video fingerprinting technology should “hopefully” be available on YouTube by September, allowing the company to quickly identify and remove copyright-violating clips. It is the first time the company has set even a tentative date for the long-awaited filtering system.

Don’t get me wrong, I love YouTube as much as the next guy, but as a business, they are somewhat of a joke. Until they get video advertising off the ground, they don’t have a really viable business model, and once they do fully integrate advertising, will the millions & millions of users keep coming back?

What’s really frustrating about YouTube, however, is how the company continues to act like some under-funded start-up while other up & coming start-ups are being built from the ground up with viable business models & more importantly, more respect for copyright. Despite all the resources available to it, YouTube still has yet to make Audible Magic’s video fingerprinting technology available while several of its competitors already have including MySpace, DailyMotion, Microsoft Soapbox, Break, GoFish, Crackle aka Grouper, Bebo, and EyeSpot.

Now, they’ll claim that copyrighted content isn’t even what their audience is there for, and some of the times, they’re right, but let’s be honest here - I’m not dying as much to see Renetto’s latest video clip as I am for soccer highlights, music videos, Sopranos clips, surfing videos, or Beyonce falling down stairs. Renetto’s good & all that, but I guess that’s just me. And that’s what’s great about YouTube - everything is there. Unfortunately, it’s not all there legally.

As Simon Dumenco wrote for AdAge in a piece entitled You’re Shakin’ My Confidence Daily, YouTube — and It Hurts, YouTube’s act isn’t so cute anymore now that it’s got big bad Google behind it. If they want to be the king of video like they proclaim they are, then they should start acting like it…and start acting like it ASAP.

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