Henry Blodget points to another milestone for Twitter: a passenger tweets a plane crash (after getting out, one hopes) — including a consumer relations moment (Continental won’t give the survivors a drink).
by Jeff Jarvis
I’m an ignoramus about sports so take that dose of salt first. But while watching Olympic soccer, it occurred me to that the sport never took off in America because we prefer results to process.
I twittered that and a discussion ensued:
Richard Sambrook said: I assume that soccer comment was heavy with irony in the light of US football timeouts etc v the fluidity of the beautiful game?
Me: Point taken. But every down is measurable progress. That’s how we run companies: deliverables, metrics, milestones, deadlines.
Mohamed Nanbhay: Admittedly I don’t know much about sport but would think that football was about a result while American football about progress.
Me: Well-said. But I keep focusing on the idea that soccer is a process. On my mind because papers struggle with process v. product.
Mohamed Nanbhay: That makes sense. Football is dynamic, players think of their feet. American football is about planning and execution?
Me: Right. And that’s more American, I think: the belief that things can be planned, then executed.
Ross: Soccer is samba. Football is line dancing.
Me: I like that. Fill in the blanks, everybody: Soccer is ____. Football is _____. Football is American because ____.
Thomas Knuewer: Nice idea. So: Soccer is free trade. Football is WTO. Football is American because it’s over regulated.
Me: By that rule, then chess is the sport of the regulated EU.
Shane Richmond: Soccer is Jackson Pollack, football is Piet Mondrian. I like this game! (But not the word ‘soccer’)
CharlesThomas: I think soccer isn’t big in the US because we prefer discrete units, pitch/snap/24 sec shot clock.
CharlesThomas: Hockey is kind of an exception, but play stops often enough for it to be discrete.
Me: Hockey’s not American. It’s Canadian a heart. And Canada is of the empire. Rule holds.
niltiac: You mean soccer’s slow and boring and the best team doesn’t always win? My thoughts exactly. Rugby – now that’s a real sport.
Mohamed Nanabhay: Do you think the national sport reflects in the way business is done? Strangely, they don’t play test cricket over here.
Ross: Soccer is the world’s game. Football is American because we win in games we invent.
Benroone: Soccer doesn’t take off in the US because you can’t break for adverts every 5 minutes.
ciaranj: Soccer is interesting. Football is boring. Football is American because it’s built around advertising.
Me: Soccer is flow. Football is a PERT chart.
Me: Soccer is a Google beta. Football is a Microsoft release.
Fred Wilson asked on Twitter this morning for a good place to have a cup of coffee in New Paltz. Otherw who know the place made recommendations. I went to Google Maps to find reviews, just as a friendly favor, because I had a spare second-cycle (don’t tell my editor; I should be editing now).
And then it occurred to me that there’s a business here, which I proposed in what I hope is the first Twittered business plan and elevator pitch.
(Now that I think of it, I might require my students in my entrepreneurial journalism course this fall to pitch their entire business in 140 characters. My old boss Steve Newhouse told last year’s students how he’d bought a business he could describe in seven words. That’s tweet-length. And as much as I hammered in the need for a clear and cogent elevator pitch, the students agreed after their juried session that they hadn’t honed them enough. So I like that, the new elevator pitch: Twitpitch.)
Anyway, the idea I pitched this morning is a marketplace of knowledge and favors: I tweet a request. People who have the knowledge or a moment look up something for me because I’m too busy or too mobile. I pick one that works for me. And that person earns cycles — more favors — which can also be redeemed in cash. The primary currency, however, is cycles. Rex Hammock suggested it’s a merger of Twitter and Amazon’s Mechanical Turk and I agree except that I don’t want pennies, I want favors — or a way to reward generosity. It’s perhaps a mix of Twitter and the Zivity model (more on that later).
I wish Google would just go ahead and buy Twitter and put us out of our misery. I want Google to get it, not AOL or Yahoo or Microsoft. We know that Google can fix its problems, as it fixed Blogger’s. I’m not one of those who is bitter about Twitter’s outages. It’s new. It’s wildly popular. It’s fundamentally changing. It’s worth waiting for. Blogger, many of you will remember, was like that, too. It was crashing and infuriating constantly. Ev Williams kept it alive by sheer dint of will. Nick Denton got me to get my employers at Conde Nast to invest in the company and help save it once; if I’ve done anything worthwhile on the internet, that was it. So now Ev and company are pulling out their rubber bands and string once more. And once more, they have created something world-changing. So you know that Google will want it. I wish that Google would just go ahead and buy it.