Posts from July 14, 2004

PowerPoint for hire: Who wants a presentation on citizens’ media?

PowerPoint for hire: Who wants a presentation on citizens’ media?

: If you’re an ad agency or marketer in New York and you want a presentation on citizens’ media (weblogs, forums, video) and what it means to marketing… I have it and I’m ready to take it on the road. I’m selling nothing, only spreading the message of this cult of ours. Gave the presentation to Daimler Chrysler, BBDO, and Organic today; been asked to present to another agency soon; if you want to hear the sermon, lemme know via email.

: Just to clarify…. I can’t really send the PowerPoint simply because most of the presentation was what I said, not what I showed on the screen. I’m not one of those who reads the words on PowerPoint screens (don’t you just hate that?). So the offer above is to meet with ad/marketing folks in New York.

But I also hear the need to present what the hell this citizens’ media thing is anyway in some form that can be passed around. Lemme see what I can do.

Time flies when you’re having fun

Time flies when you’re having fun

: I was at Daimler Chrysler today presenting citizens’ media — us — to marketing execs and agency folks from BBDO and Organic.

Dave Rooney of Daimler Chrysler said it was 10 years go that the first banner ad appeared.

Then Jerry Yang appeared and said it was a little over 10 years ago when Yahoo started.

And it’s almost 10 years since I started at my current job.

Damn. A decade.

My beard is much grayer. Jerry — whom I met in the early days — is still young but not as young (he’s an official grown-up now). “I always thought of myself as the young person in this industry,” he said. “Having been in the industry for 10 years, I now feel like I’m 85.”

Except what was fun was that talking about citizens’ media was like talking about the Internet 10 years ago, without the hype. It’s another beginning. And that’s exciting.

: Yang emphasized a few themes regarding Yahoo.

Local is one. The company is seeing more and more searches for local information; it sees more potential. Applications are another. He talked briefly about the purchase this week of Oddpost.com, a good web-based email service, and said that thanks to increased bandwidth, the company is looking at what can reside on the client versus the server.

He said the company will do “a lot more” with personal publishing — and that doesn’t mean just blogs; it also means people “publishing” their own audio, photos, and video. He says all the right things about the value of citizens’ media content.

He was asked about Yahoo running TV networks and said that the company needs to add value. Unfortunately, he’s still using the old terms for that value — proxies for interactive TV (a promise nobody wanted): Get more information on this player as he plays. I do think Yahoo will be doing more TV but it will likely come from new sources and Yahoo’s distribution will be the value it adds.

: And thanks to PubSub, I already found this internal Daimler Chrysler blog entry about the day there.

On the road again, damnit

On the road again, damnit

: I do hate traveling now. Northwest has a computer outage; they weren’t even answering their phone earlier today. Phanton thunder along the East Coast causes flight cancellations like mad. I’m sitting in Detroit just waiting to get home. I know you couldn’t possibly give a damn, and shouldn’t. But it made me feel better to whine. Thank you.

Run, mate?

Run, mate?

: A PR person for Business Week sends news of its latest online poll re Cheney: “Almost 60% of respondents say that President Bush should find a new running mate to replace Dick Cheney while almost 35% say no (about 5% undecided).” It’s one of those easily stackable polls, so who knows. But it’s interesting nonetheless that this is the response at Business Week.

I tend to believe instead an editorial cartoon I saw this week: A reporter is asking Bush with Cheney are asked about changing running mates and Cheney says he’d never get rid of his little buddy George.

From inside The Times: Okrent emails

From inside The Times: Okrent emails

: I got email from New York Times public editor Dan Okrent thanking me for my blog support after the Wall Street Journal portrayed him as Lassie amid the Kujos. But he wanted to let me — thus, you — know that life at The Times is better than that.

“Things here really aren’t so bad,” he said. “As you may have noticed, nearly all the examples cited in the Journal piece, while entirely accurate, occurred many months ago…”

I don’t mean to suggest the job isn’t hard, or that there aren’t people here who are impossibly difficult to deal with. Sure, when I criticize people in print they get pissed. Some can even get a little mean. But most — even the ones who get angry — acknowledge that I’ve got a job to do and am trying mightily to do it fairly.

The good news is that the most recent exchange with Executive Editor Bill Keller over Okrent’s column on the Tony Hendra story was less about pissiness — as the Journal would have us believe — than about substance; it was, in fact, fruitful:

We disagreed strenuously but respectfully. And his point about a campaign was exactly yours — the experience with me, he was saying, gave him a sense of what subjects of Times stories must feel like at times.

Well, bravo. If The Times learns that crucial lesson, then whatever growling and snapping Okrent must endure is worth it.

I’m going to a meeting of journalistic honchos this weekend and I’m supposed to talk about technology and the newsroom. But the real moral to the story is that what technology has brought to us is a culture of transparency. We bloggers demand transparency. Open-source advocates demand transparency. Consumers demand transparency. Hell, journalists have always demanded transparency of the politicians and business leaders and celebrities they covered. Now it’s time for journalism to pull back the shades. And that is what Okrent is trying to teach the Timesmen to do.

They are old dogs. We’ll see whether they can learn new tricks.

: Perhaps I should have emailed Dan when I posted my reaction to the Journal story to ask, “Is it really that bad?” But I didn’t. I got the free link from the Journal at midnight and rushed to beat the blogrush and get it up first. I almost speculated in my post that perhaps the Journal was engaging in a little schadenfreude, that they were looking to snipe at rival Timesmen. But I said to myself, no, surely they’d been careful to be balanced — and couldn’t find much balance. And, hey, it was a free link, so I didn’t look the gift horse in the mouth. Well, perspective matters in all stories.