Where is the Green Stuff?

February 21, 2013

In the old days of publishing on paper, room for content was scarce and prices for advertisers would go up as audiences grew. In these days space for content is unlimited and in fact infinite. 

So, there is a problem for businesses who depend on advertising revenue. Not just for paper based products also for digital formats. Even more so in fact. Prices online are based on other metrics then the old fashioned supply and demand.

To make things more complicated prices are set by other parties. GOOG, as we all know makes quite a bundle every quarter.

Who will pay for good quality content?

In Europe an answer is popping up. Forces are gathering to get more money form GOOG.

Some interesting background info in this post from Frédéric Filloux, general manager for digital operations at Les Echos Groupe.


Intentions & behavior

January 21, 2013

John Battelle predicted the commercial rise of Search (GOOG) back in 2005 in his book with the subtitle ‘ How Google and Its Rivals Rewrote the Rules of Business and Transformed Our Culture’ . One of his central metaphors was ‘the database of intentions’. Advertisers would pay huge sums of money to place an ad(word) triggered by a search term  If someone is looking for a nice holiday farm in Tuscany it might make sense to place an ad for just that and hope that someone might click. Right so. The rest is history one might add.

Now intentions are under pressure. Amazon has this huge database with people who actually bought something. An act to buy is behavior. Actual behavior is far more interesting information for advertisers. Not for all products and services maybe, but for a lot.

Amazon woos advertisers with what it knows about consumers.


Back on the road again

January 3, 2013

Since my last post I have been launching a Big Data start-up and the coding & testing has finished.
It works quite well.
Business deals are underway.

Time again to write and share some of my thoughts.
Just as I enter the arena again, something happened.
Media companies are busy creating the role of Chief Digital Officer.


What’s in a name?

September 6, 2011

The main subject of this blog so far is the respons of publishers and media executives to the disruptions and the new shifts in and around the interwebs.

The move to mobile, the rise of apps, the battles for platform domination, the coming of the iPad, and of course all the experiments with trying to get paid for producing quality content.

I have posted 105 times and it has been fun. But not anymore. I will stop writing for publishing and media people about the events happening around them, in the hope they will rethink their business strategy and start acting. 

It’s time to move on, since the world moves on as well. And fast it does.

When I started this blog, I zoomed in on myopia. Why is it we do not see and understand the developments around us? I chose the world of, what one may call, New Media Dynamics. A fast paced world. Especially nowadays.

But myopia is certainly not limited to media. In these extraordinary days it is all around us. Politicians who refuse to think about the future. Bankers who keep acting like they own the place. Shifts in power from the West to the East.  There are a lot of developments far more interesting then the myopia of media people.

There is a pressing question to explore: what’s the connection between the rapid rise of hyperconnectivity and the collapse of the old ways of thinking and planning we can see everywhere?  I need to dive into that matter.

That’s why I changed the name of this blog into (Media) Myopia.

Starting today I will try to blog at least once a week.

From today I will shift my focus to other issues as well. To name just a few:

  • Big Data, as the driver of change.
  • Black Swans, being these things and events we humans can not see and anticipate, it seems.
  • Complexity, of which there is far too much.
  • Simplex sigillum veri (who came up with this one?)

In Real Life I am working with a great team to launch a completely new approach to handle disparate data. We have gone back to the pre PC era and picked up some neat ideas about tackling the issue of information overload.

Time to reflect

August 18, 2011

Two weeks ago I was camping  in the middle of nowhere in La France. An old friend from Holland started the site 15 years ago. His dream was to create a refuge from the modern world. A place without almost anything, except the most basic things like 2 showers and 3 toilets and 1 fridge for all the visitors (mostly around 50 -70 people).

I hadn’t visited the ‘aire naturelle’ for 5 years. The only thing he added in these 5 years were two extra sockets near the fridge. They were all used to recharge iphones and iPads. And there was a waiting list.

I spoke with a man with an iPad, who told me he drove every morning to a nearby village to plug in and check the news and his mail. Screens are everywhere. Access as well. Even in the middle of nowhere (in Europe, that is).

I’m happy to say I did not carry a screen. Even more happier to say I did not read one single newspaper. Instead I read a few books. Very handy mobile media, I must say. I read a novel about the magic of books and Barcelona, finally finished ‘Outliers’ and worked my way through Friedman’s Green Bible.

And I had plenty of time to think. I came to feel, understand and notice the effect of media usage. Instead of browsing and flipping from blogs to posts and tweets, I actually enjoyed the time to reflect.


May 31, 2011

A long time ago, back in 1987, a man called John Sculley, published a book called ‘Odyssey. Pepsi to Apple. A journey of adventure, ideas and the future’. Apple’s ceo at the time explained in his book why Steve Jobs had hired him and why Steve left.

On page 403 John Sculley tried to look into the future:

‘A future-generation Macintosh, which we should have early in the twenty-first century, might well be a wonderful fantasy machine called the Knowledge Navigator, a discoverer of worlds, a tool as galvanizing as the printing press. Individuals could use it to drive through libraries, museums, databases, or institutional archives. This tool wouldn’t just take you to the doorstep of these great resources as sophisticated computers do now; it would invite you deep inside its secrets, interpreting and explaining -converting vast quantities of information into personalized and understandable knowledge.’

Some people at the company came up with a video. They were inspired by the Dynabook concept, created by Alan Kay in 1968. The Knowledge Navigator looked like this:

The video can be found here.

John left and Steve came back.

And now we all have and/or want an ipod, iphone and iPad.

It indeed has been an epic voyage, as the word odyssey came to refer to.

Microsoft is far from stupid

May 10, 2011

As Nicholas Negroponte thaught us in the early days of the web, one of the certain trends in the transformation from atoms to bits is the convergence of Media, Telecom and IT industries.

Boundaries blurred, blur and will keep blurring.

IT companies are fighting for positions as Media powerhouses. And as things look now, some of them are quite successful, especially Apple and Google, who yesterday changed places as ‘most wanted worldwide brand’.

But things move quickly. Today Microsoft acquired Skype for a hefty fee. In cash, one might add.

Most commentators reacted stunned. Why buy Skype? Skype may have 663.000.000 active members, only 8.800.000 actually pay. And a turnover of 860.000.000 is not that big, is it? It’s only about a 100$ per paying member. So they say.

But let us look at this big news from a different perspective. Imagine that it is possible to double the amount of payments. Imagine it is possible to double the amount of users that actually pay. Then it becomes a no brainer.

Look at this strategic move from another different angle: strategy.

It becomes clear this is a perfect move again. Microsoft is already moving to the clouds. Microsoft just did a deal with Nokia. Microsoft is doing a public beta with Office 365. Microsoft is already one of the fastest growing telephone services companies in the world.  Microsoft has quite an installed base in the business world.

And last but not least the real power of Microsoft is  the strong ties with developers, reaching hundreds of millions of businesses all around the globe.

Microsoft is moving into the business of making phone calls. Phones, not media.

But what are phones really these days?