Thursday, September 13, 2007

Want to 'converse' with advertisers? Me neither

From The New York Times - I admit it; I'm cynical when it comes to advertising and marketing. I believe that the sole purpose of advertising is to convince me to part with my well-earned and limited supply of money and persuade me that I want things that I don't really need.

So, it was with some skepticism that I covered the Conversational Marketing Summit hosted by Federated Media at San Francisco's Presidio on Wednesday. The notion is that instead of bombarding consumers with generic messages whose success rate are hard to measure, companies can use the Internet to deliver targeted messages that consumers will want to hear, can learn from customers through interactive features and can entertain them with funny videos. Federated Media connects the many blogs--including BoingBoing, Digg and Techdirt--in its network to advertisers who are seeking that audience. | Read full article

Set-top box makers still waiting for customers

From The New York Times - Sounds like a raw deal, and it's a situation similar to when you buy a set-top box that downloads movies via the Web: You invest a significant amount of money when you buy the box, then whenever you want to watch a movie, you have to pay again. It's one of the reasons that, so far, the few companies to introduce standalone products in this space, such as Akimbo and MovieBeam, have called it quits, or at the very least no longer exist in their original incarnations.

Now the makers of a more evolved version of the Internet-based video download box hope they can change things. | Read full article

Show Series to Originate on MySpace

From The New York Times - Hollywood has been dipping its toe in original online content. Two seasoned producers are about to take a full plunge.

Marshall Herskovitz and Edward Zwick — who have made films like “Blood Diamond” and “The Last Samurai” and whose ABC series “Thirtysomething” helped to define television drama in the 1980s — have made a deal with MySpace, the online social network owned by the News Corporation, to produce an original Web series called “Quarterlife.” | Read full article

What Is Yahoo Mash?

From The New York Times - Yesterday I received an automated e-mail from a Yahoo PR representative saying that he had set up a profile for me on Yahoo’s new service, Yahoo Mash. “It’s good to be loved,” the e-mail said.

But it’s no fun to be teased. I followed the link to, which bounced me to a username/password page, titled Yahoo Guesthouse, where my Yahoo login information did not work. I pointed this out to the Yahoo PR rep, and he replied cryptically over e-mail:

“Yeah, I jumped the gun on inviting you. Not yet open to the public… Soon…” | Read full article

Web Video’s Audience Likes 2.7 Minutes at a Time

From The New York Times - The Miss Teen USA candidate from South Carolina has problems with the Q&A portion of the program. And that zombie kid likes turtles.

Now this programming break: Get back to work!

ComScore, which measures consumer Internet habits, reported today that 75 percent of Internet users in the United States watch an average of three hours of online video a month. The average online video duration was 2.7 minutes (which, if you do the math, is a couple of videos a day, many of which no doubt scrape the bottom of the blender of content). | Read full article

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

The Graying of the Web

From The New York Times - Older people are sticky.

That is the latest view from Silicon Valley. Technology investors and entrepreneurs, long obsessed with connecting to teenagers and 20-somethings, are starting a host of new social networking sites aimed at baby boomers and graying computer users.

The sites have names like Eons, Rezoom, Multiply, Maya’s Mom, Boomj, and Boomertown. They look like Facebook — with wrinkles.

And they are seeking to capitalize on what investors say may be a profitable characteristic of older Internet users: they are less likely than youngsters to flit from one trendy site to the next. | Read full article

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Activating Through Video: Not By Overlay Alone

From Video Insider - WHEN YOUTUBE RECENTLY ANNOUNCED ITS overlay ad model, forgoing the pre-roll and choosing instead to embrace an opt-in video overlay, it occurred to me that they'd forgotten that advertising in broadband video doesn't have to be a necessary evil if it's done right.

Hearing their argument that research showed a dramatic roll-off in viewing when consumers were presented with :30 and :15 pre-rolls led me to wonder whether or not ANY of the pre-rolls were any good to begin with -- or just versions of TV :30's and :15's that weren't created for the online medium. Did they forget that their medium is not the message, but in this case, the message is the message? | Read full article

eCrush & OTX: Teens Learn About New TV Shows From TV, Not the Internet

From Online Media Daily - WHATEVER TEENS ARE DISCUSSING ON their social networks, it isn't the new fall TV season.

That's the conclusion of research conducted by Hearst Magazines Digital Media's own teen social networking site eCRUSH, in conjunction with OTX, the Online Testing exchange.

The "Teen Topix" study, which surveyed 750 13- to-17-year-olds across the country about their TV viewing behavior and preferences, found that most teens (51%) still learn about new TV shows the old-fashioned way: from on-air ads and promos. | Read full article

Online Video Viewers Looking For News Clips

From Research Brief - A new study by, Inc., reports that that the majority of consumers are viewing video online, at 62 percent of survey respondents. These viewers are not just young adults viewing user-generated videos, says the report, but, in fact, 69 percent are ages 35 and older with a preference for viewing news clips online.

Lynda Clarizio, president of, says "The Internet is still seen first and foremost as an information resource. With news clips remaining the most popular type of streamed content... (but) we may see a shift in usage toward recreation; these latest figures... hint at that trend." | Read full article

Monday, September 10, 2007

Warner Shifts Web Course, Shouldering Video Costs

From The New York Times - In the race to become a major supplier of original video programming to the Web, Warner Brothers has decided to reverse its direction.

The studio, part of Time Warner, plans today to introduce 24 Web productions in a range of formats including minimovies, games and episodic television shows. | Read full article