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DIGITAL MEDIA FROM THE INSIDE OUT: My focus is digital content -- production, distribution, collaboration, innovation, creativity. Some posts have appeared across the web (HuffPo, Tribeca's Future of Film, The Wrap, MIPblog, etc.). To receive these posts regularly via email, sign up for my newsletter here.

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Friday
Feb032012

Best links of the week NOT about the damned Facebook IPO

This was a week when we needed an app that would filter out all of the lame (and occasionally non-lame) patter about the pending Facebook IPO. (Example: The Guardian tells us six things we need to know about the IPO, as if somehow its readers were considering a purchase)


Underlying all the link-fodder, of course, is the extraordinary transformation that Facebook has wrought on the web, and everything that has come to mean in people's lives, as the latest Pew Internet survey reveals.

TECH BIZ & TRENDS

I spend a lot of time in my work trying to figure out how innovation comes about. So I was fascinated by two articles from the mainest of the mainstream media on the topic this week: Why Brainstorming Doesn’t Work is a long read that appeared in The New Yorker, ironically, during the same week as the NY Times issued a similar jeremiad against "groupthink". 

Trend-wise, highly respected (and followed) tech guru Robert Scoble suggests that the intense tech disruption of the last 8 years may recede this year as a new class of enabling companies step up to help others scale their businesses by leveraging the transformational aspects (like the cloud, apps, social, etc,)

From the department of geek, part 2 of RWW's interview with Netflix's Daniel Jacobsen posits a future when the "app" experience we are seeing on mobile becomes a standard on laptops and certainly televisions.  

Super-hot social blogging platform Tumbr has begun to hire experienced editors and writers to help its users make sense of the mass of content produced on the site every minute. A trend?

Marc Andreesen opines about the VC and startup world in the wake of his new $1.5 billion fund. Worth the read.

Buzzworthy start-up CodeAcademy, which provides online training for software programmers, has now become a platform that supports outsiders who want to create their own courses. I mention this because I was one of 100,000 people who signed up for free training in a single two-day period in January. I'm also one whose head hurt after the first lesson. I'll never be a hacker, I fear, but it was fun trying.

ONLINE VIDEO & CONTENT

Time Mag looks at YouTube as of 2012, but since the whole article is fire walled, check out Kevin Nalts' summary. BTW the headline is great: "The Beast with a Billion Eyes." 

Will Richmond of VideoNuze tells us why cable doesn't "get" YouTube, and he thinks they sound like broadcasters back when cable was the disrupter. 

In case you hadn't noticed, YouTube isn't the only online video provider that's investing in original content. Here's a quick update.

Are you a member of the "Content Creation Class"? Check out this post, which divides us into creators and consumers in a way that you may find useful, or perhaps irritating, or both. 

"Temporal Metadata" may be a term that gives you a headache, but as this very smart post explains, new forms of tagging the meaning and content within videos may hold the key to creating value for online video publishing. Efforts in Europe like the NoTube initiative are addressing it. 

Two startups, Frequency and Showyou, are among the new breed of startups trying to make sense of the tonnage of video now available via the web. Trust me, there will be more (both tonnage and startups trying to help curate, manage, prioritize, contextualize and discover online video). It's a big opportunity. 

AOL steps up its investment in online video with a plan to generate 12 hours of video per day from its HuffPo subsid.  

One of my frequently-used sites, Goodreads, bailed on Amazon as the provider of its descriptive book data, and this post explains why, indeed, explains the complexities of online businesses that rely upon outsourced metadata generally. 

A smart post from the Atlantic called "Why the Future of the Book is the Stream," which suggests that the Netflix on demand sub model will work with books.  

The NY Times ran a ginormous story on Barnes & Noble this week, "The Bookstore's Last Stand"

FILM & TRANSMEDIA

Life is not easy for the indie filmmaker, as this Sundance wrap-up post from IndieWire makes abundantly clear, along with some great tips. 

Lina Srivastava has done a lovely job of aggregating examples of "Narrative Design for Social Action" using the Pinterest platform, the first time I've seen it done so well. It looks a bit like my Delicious "Stack" on Transmedia, only Pinterest presents a denser, tile-based UI. 

Leave it to Frank Rose to provide great context, as with this analysis of the "Game of Thrones" transmedia components on his Deep Media blog (The banner: How the Internet is changing storytelling)

A couple of posts about content marketing & transmedia caught my eye this week, one by Marc Binkley that incorporates some of the ideas from Ernest Barbaric's post, "What is Content Marketing" 

As Sony replaces CEO Howard Stringer with Kazuo Hirai, it's hard not to feel a bit sad that the giant tech/media company has fallen so fast and so low. Stringer is class A human, who could not turn the battleship around,

Vimeo has launched a "Focus Forward" program to stimulate documentary shorts about tech innovation. Worth keeping an eye on. 

TOOLS 

If the rise in digital storytelling continues, there will inevitably be a surge of new tools to help content creators who don't want to reinvent the wheel. To wit, the buzz all over the web around TumbleCloud, a cloud-based collaborative storytelling platform 

Three tools that were new to me -- HipGeo, StoryWheel, and CowBird -- are described in this post from a self-described uberGeek. 

This post offers a nice survey of "journalism 2.0" tools. 

Friday
Jan272012

Curating the Week's Best in Film, TV, Video, Transmedia & Digital Business

Each week I offer my own (human) curation of links, posts, and articles that have informed me in the markets in which I actively consult -- film, television, video, transmedia, and digital business. You can scan the summary, click through, or go to my Twitter account (@nickdemartino), where the items below are among those "favorited" with a star. 

TELEVISION AND VIDEO

  • It will be interesting to watch the new TV venture from Mark Cuban, Ryan Seacrest, CAA and AEG, reported here in Variety (a gated community). 
  • Long Tail Video created a really excellent overview of HTML5 by cramming a ton of info into easy-to-digest charts and graphics. This is a model of clarity in presentation, especially  if you're into tech subjects.
  • Cable networks are emerging as the most innovative users of social TV apps, as noted in Mashable's rundown of efforts by FX and USA.
  • As part of Netflix's resurrection campaign the company noted that its streaming service is now available on more than 800 devices (!) and that mobile is taking over. 
  • Think Netflix is worried about Hulu and Amazon catching up? Nope, the threat is "TV Everywhere," according to this TNW post.
  • Maybe they should worry more about Apple TV, which GigaOm asserts is finally gaining marketplace traction. 
  • I loved this piece on the impact of VOD binge viewing on future TV business models, posted on WIRED. I'm a binger, aren't you?  
  • YouTube's Reach Begins to Eclipse Television, claims Read Write Web, based upon recent data.
  • As it shifts towards more professional content and a channel-based interface, YouTube reached out to its base of member-creators this week
  • John Seabrook's analysis of Robert Kyncl and YouTube: Will it Revolutionize Television? New Yorker 
  • Perhaps in reaction to YouTube's strategy, Vimeo this week released new features, including a new player and a streamlined look. 

  • One YouTuber who is jumping quite a shark is Dane Beodigheimer's ANNOYING ORANGE, which announced a deal with Cartoon Network this week. 
  • Video is powering a global classroom, according to this story from Mashable.

STORYTELLING AND TRANSMEDIA

  • Check out this beautiful display of components that comprised the "multilayered transmedia campaign" in support of HBO's GAME OF THRONES by Steve Coulson who presented this week at the newly named STORYCODE meet up group at Lincoln Center. http://work.stevecoulson.com/portfolio/game-of-thrones 
  • Finally, SXSW announced the finalists for its Interactive Awards with a list of links to products in each area, including activism, amusement, art, business, community, education, experimental, film/TV, music, motion graphics and so forth. So helpful if one wishes to actually check out the sites. http://sxsw.com/interactive/awards/finalists

FILM

  • With the announcement of the Oscar nominations, we move into the home-stretch of the movie biz annual race. the web awash with analysis and predictions, like this one from the Reporter, offering "key factoids." 
  • At the other end of the biz --perhaps in honor of Sundance which is in session-- check this out: Jeffrey Winter, Sheri Candler, and Orly Ravid, three of the four authors of "Selling Your Film Without Selling Your Soul" offer another batch of DIY distribution success stories, posted on Ted Hope's blog.
  • Indeed, Sundance's Robert Redford opened the festival with a nod to alternate distribution. 
  • Cinedigm joint venture seeks to help indie filmmakers compete in the digital space. 

DIGITAL BUSINESS 

  • Apple's entry into the textbook market got lots of attention last week, including a nice post from the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard, "The Day the Bookshelf Shook." 
  • Though "the network effect" may be the holy grail for digital business, maybe not so much, according to this really smart post from the Business Insider. 
  • The impact of the epic struggle over SOPA has resulted in some interesting long-view posts, including Chris Dorr's analysis, which centers on the fundamental differences between the technological networks employed by the adversaries (Hollywood, Internet). 
  • The Hollywood Reporter dives into "what went wrong" for Hollywood in a nice piece of reporting by Kim Masters. 
  • One sign that a company is important is how much new it makes when it introduces change to its user base. Hence, Twitter made news with a shift in how it "withholds" certain tweets -- is it censorship? The twitterati are atwitter.
  • That will be nothing, however, compared to the online flutter that will attend to the long-awaited filing by Facebook of its long-awaited Initial Public Offering, rumored to be as early as next week.