Sudhanshu Saria, a senior in film making at Ithaca College, is participating in a cell phone film contest in Ithaca, N.Y., Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2005. Ithaca College has invited high school and college students from across America to submit a 30-second film shot entirely with a cell phone. Saria likes the novel challenges presented by working with a cell phone and a 1- to 2-inch screen. (AP Photo/Kevin Rivoli)

Ithaca College Launches $5,000 Cell Phone Film Fest
Details from the AP here

The school has invited high school and college students across America to submit a 30-second movie shot entirely with a cell phone. It may come off like a gimmick, but Dean Dianne Lynch has no doubts about the contest's academic value. In today's media marketplace — where cell phones can take pictures, play music and games and connect to Web sites — it's all about thinking small and mobile.

And now to quote a colleague ... "Why aren't WE doing this?"

Samsung Launches

From the Wireless Weblog: Blogger Netanel Jacobsson tells us that Samsung Mobile has launched, where users can download short films produced exclusively for cellphones from up-and-coming filmmakers. In addition, the service features an “Interactive Films” tool where a user can produce their own film by clicking on various icons and pre-produced scenes. Sounds very cool and worth a look. According to Netanel, the service is set for launch on Christmas Eve (Saturday), but he says the website is already up and running.

BBC News: Women Tempted by Gadget Gifts
Link to full story here

US women influence a staggering 80 percent of electronics purchases according to the CEA. Many prefer to purchase online because they find electronics stores such as Best Buy and Circuit City to be busy, cluttered and unhelpful.

Best Buy store

Podcasting Made Easy -

liberated syndication: podcast hosting made easy

It's only $5 a month. You can record your own Podcast at home, then upload it for publication.
Go there now!

[ Update: Sony Cancels All A.I. Funding ]

Asimo is Your Friend!

Photos of Sony's amazing robot here.


Fastest Growing Web Sites of 2005
AP News story here.

  • has 30.8 million unique visitors per month
  • Yahoo! is number one with 104 million visitors per month
  • Other fast growers are MySpace, Face Book, Google, Amazon and PhotoBucket.

USA Today: Poll finds Americans dependent on gadgets
... the year's biggest "duh" moment ...

It's an AP/Ipsos poll. One third of US households spend $200 a month for entertainment and communications connectivity (broadband, Tivo, cable, cellular, etc.) combined. That's 30 Million Households, people!

USA Today's Predictions for 2006

- Steve Jobs will fall from grace
- Consumers will embrace RSS
- Cell phone cameras will become useful
- Microsoft will rally against Google

It's a good article. Read it here.

Playstation 3 Demo - High Def Explosion
Show this video demonstration to your favorite agency producer!

What's happening here is the rendering of the explosion is being processed in real time; it is NOT an animation that was created by a digital artist and then "played" as a clip.

So get ready for real-time animation with the visual quality of The Incredibles ... on your TV, in your games and ... in your ads!

USA's Retail Dominance Fades ... ???

Nokia unveils first flagship store
DECEMBER 08, 2005 -- The first flagship store for telecommunications company Nokia opened today in the Pushkin Square district of Moscow, Russia. "Through an innovative retail experience like the new Nokia Flagship Stores, Nokia aims to inspire and educate consumers to the benefits of mobility and broaden the appeal of the Nokia brand. It is a place for discovery and entertainment," said Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, president and COO of Nokia, at the official unveiling in Moscow. "Whether it is demonstrating the features and capabilities of our latest multimedia smartphone or assisting a consumer with their mobile email settings, we want to offer a relaxing, interactive environment for consumers to truly experience the power of mobility." Interactive, multimedia displays will engage visitors as they visit the store, encouraging them to share images or send messages to friends and connect with individuals around the world. Shoppers will also be able to set-up their new devices, review service provider options and test the range of mobile enhancements related to their new phone. One area of the Nokia Flagship Stores will be dedicated to mobile gaming with direct access to the N-Gage Arena, Nokia's global mobile gaming network. As more flagship stores open around the world, visitors will be able to compete directly against scores posted by those playing at other Nokia stores.

Thou Shalt I.M.
Instant Messaging Popularity Jumps Says AOL
Read the article via PCWorld on Yahoo! News

  • Use of instant messaging in the US is up 19 percent
  • Used both at work and home
  • Many Americans are now sending more IMs than e-mail

According to the survey:

  • Fifty-eight percent of at-work instant messaging users now send IMs to communicate with colleagues
  • Forty-nine percent of at-work users rely on IM to get answers and make business decisions
  • Twenty-eight percent use IM to interact with clients or customers
  • Twelve percent of at-work IM users have used it to avoid a difficult in-person conversation
  • Twenty percent say they currently enjoy, or would like to try, making live voice calls to other computers, landlines, and cell phones directly from their IM service
  • Another 12 percent say they would be interested in an IM-based voice-over-IP (VoIP) service that could replace their primary household phone line
  • In Seattle, 47 percent of at-work IM users are most likely to say things in an instant message that they wouldn't document in an e-mail message
  • More than three in four at-work users, 77 percent, said IM has had a positive impact on their work lives
  • Also, 25 percent of at-work IMers say that instant messaging enables them to check in on their children during the workday, providing them with greater peace of mind

Among those who use instant messaging for business purposes, 13 percent say they have their IM screen name printed on their business cards, while 6 percent say they write it on the business cards they exchange.

New Oxford American Dictionary announces Word of the Year: 'Podcast'

Tuesday, December 06, 2005 - 12:21 PM EST

Only a year ago, podcasting was an arcane activity, the domain of a few techies and self-admitted "geeks." Now you can hear everything from NASCAR coverage to NPR's All Things Considered in downloadable audio files called "podcasts". Thousands of podcasts are available at the iTunes Music Store, and websites such as and track thousands more. That's why the editors of the New Oxford American Dictionary have selected "podcast" as the Word of the Year for 2005. Podcast, defined as "a digital recording of a radio broadcast or similar program, made available on the Internet for downloading to a personal audio player," will be added to the next online update of the New Oxford American
Dictionary, due in early 2006.
Click here for complete story

TiVo to develop TV ad search service
Mon Nov 28, 2:46 PM ET
"TiVo Inc., the company that made its name by letting users skip television commercials, said on Monday it is working on technology that lets viewers search for specific advertisements.The technology, which is expected to be launched in early 2006, is among the advertising industry's latest efforts to reach consumers using high-tech products to escape the traditional ad pitch." Read the complete article here.

What this means friends ... if you take a page from Seth Godin's Permission Marketing ... is that TiVo is updating its business model to become the de facto "permission broker" for consumers to "allow" or "deny" advertisers from reaching them through electronic media.

Chase blink card

Engadget Writes About Using the New "blink" RFID Credit Card
Overall, the answer is a squishy ... ummmmm ... not yet! Of course, that's due to security concerns. . A few choice quotes:

  • The worst case scenario involves someone getting their hands on a blink terminal and modifying it to increase the range. Potentially, someone could set up the terminal at a crowded location and collect the credit-card data of anyone who came within the terminal’s read range.
  • So far the security risk seems mostly theoretical, but I’ve already had my identity stolen once and am not very eager to go through all that again (plus I’d prefer not to have to carry my credit card in a special RFID-blocking metal sleeve).
Here's the full article, plus you can cast a vote on whether the author should use his card.

Iger on Digital Media

Robert_igerNice quotes from Disney CEO Bob Iger in the WSJ today (subscr. req.) on the video iPod deal:

I really wanted to use it as a catalyst to get the company thinking more about breaking with tradition and following the consumer. Interestingly enough, nothing has done more to reignite the company than this deal. It almost has created more value for the company than the deal itself.

. . . and on scope of the challenges the media industry faces today from digital technologies and how it needs to adapt:

There are more unknowns and potential threats swarming around the media business today. I've been in the business a long time and it feels like today is very different in terms of attitude at major media businesses or the entities that feed into media. I think a challenge all of us face in the traditional media space is the balance between tradition and economics. Our businesses tend to be a little too reverential to tradition and not as much to the consumer. Thanks to the power of digital technology, we're seeing pretty dramatic shifts in consumer behavior and demand. We have to pay heed.

It's good to know that someone in Medialand is paying attention.

The Human Locator via Freeset Interactive, Montreal, Canada

You must see this! An embedded camera in the signage dynamically "reacts" to people who pass by.
The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
The site shows demos and quicktime videos of development tests. It's something we should jump on immediately.

Tech Talk c/o Tribune Magazine
"Once you decipher it, the language ... isn't so foreign at all."
Click here.

Now ... Videophone from Skype
Read about it here

  • Video chats, as part of instant messaging services such as one sponsored by Yahoo Inc., have been around for years, but they offer only jerky, pixelated, postage-stamp-sized video that looks like it was transmitted from Jupiter during a sunspot eruption.
  • With the Skype 2.0 update, the picture is far clearer, larger and more stable. So much so that this may be the long-awaited application that brings video telephony to the masses, especially now that webcams can be bought for as little as $30.
  • Opportunities for commercials, DR spots and interactive telemarketing videos are sure to follow

A video chat

Dynamically-Personalized Radio
This appears to be a commercial start-up offshoot of the Music Genome Project. Here's an NPR interview with the founder and CEO. The Wikipedia entry says, "When users enter their preferences, the Music Genome Project analyzes the style and particular elements of the songs or bands entered, and uses a search engine to find like artists and songs, both famous and fairly obscure. These more obscure artists submit their music to the Music Genome Project to become more well-known."

iPod Video Content "Networks" Proliferate
c/o USA Today

The video iPod is going to get even more use now.

Great article on start-ups that are already posting iPod-ready videos including vintage TV shows, music videos and more. Notable are Veoh, which is free, and, which is not. .

How Mainstream Is That? ... Parade Magazine Reports on Emerging Platforms!

Podcasting! ...
Mobile Phone TV + Media! ...
Gadgets of 2005! ...

PARADE Home Page

Hey ... if it's in Parade, it's in America's living rooms and shopping carts!

RFID Lanyard for Tracking School Attendance
There's little mystery here -- Just compare this to using the ID card you've got to enter our building. The difference is our ID cards are bulky and magnetic (don't strap it to your Blackberry), while RFID chips are very small and much, much cheaper.

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
The school attendance program was a test in California; and the students objected loudly which hastened the program's cancellation. So, yes, consumer adoption of RFID technology will be slow and at times ugly. But let's not forget that the Web was a scary, potentially evil place not that many years ago.

Roll Your Own Search Engine by

You can designate a specific search ... for example a new digital camera or mobile phone ... or register for a "My Rollyo" page and add "celebrity" searches such as Arianna Huffington's favorite blogs or Debra Messing's favorite online shopping destinations.


You Need To Know About ... Skype
Free Internet Telephone Service (VOIP) That's Finally ... Global
Share SkypeSkype

Mastercard Introduces PayPass System - RFID Chip Branded "Blink"

PayPass Drive Thru TV Commercial

The Chase version of this card is featured in a campaign called "Blink"... at this promo site. Notice the "smart chip" in the center of the card. That's the RFID chip, folks. The trade pub CardWeb has an article here. It requires a compatible POS terminal that Chase is rolling out nationally.

The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.

The ExxonMobil SpeedPass is familiar, no? It should be ... it's practically the same technology. But now it's embedded in the credit card instead of requiring a dangling keychain device. BTW, SpeedPass and McDonald's was a total failure!


RFID Rolls On ... New Book Warns of "Electronic Frisking"
Authors warn that marketers, retailers and the government are likely to overreach into confidential consumer information by using Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technology.
Examples include Illinois' I-Pass, ExxonMobil's SpeedPass and the State Dept's plans to embed a chip into your passport. Read the complete article here.

More Evidence that Mass Media are Moving Out of Home
AdSpace Mall-vertising Video Boards

  • AdSpace screens are available in 22 U.S. malls. Current markets include New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, San Francisco, Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Sacramento.
  • The 22 malls in AdSpace’s current network have 340 million visitors annually, according to the U.S. Mall Directory. Each month 189 million people shop at U.S. malls, according to a 2004 Arbitron study. The average shopping time in malls is 90 minutes.

- Article Here

... is a USB flash memory drive containing songs, videos, and exclusive content from the Barenaked Ladies, and will go on sale November 22, 2005! Essential for any BNL fan’s collection, the 128mg USB flash memory drive (about the size of your pinky finger) is a fast and easy way to share music, videos, pictures and other data. It is PC/Mac compatible, re-usable and incredibly low priced at $29.98 (close to the same cost of the device on its own with no special content). It will be available on and (Nettwerk’s online merchandise store), and will also be sold at all BNL shows this winter.

This 128 reusable drive contains the following features:
  • The complete For The Holidays Album in mp3 format
  • Live tracks
  • Best of the Adlibs
  • Album artwork
  • Photo Gallery ... and more

Google Unveils Tool to Map Shopping Trips

AP SAN FRANCISCO - Joining the herd of Web sites jostling to cash in on the holiday shopping season, online search engine leader Google Inc. is adding a tool designed to make it easier for consumers to map out their local trips to the mall.

The feature, to be unveiled Tuesday at Google's Froogle shopping site, will pinpoint the merchants selling a specific item within a designated ZIP code. Besides displaying a map showing all the local stores carrying the merchandise, Froogle also will list price differences.

The Mountain View, Calif.-based company developed the free tool to help consumers avoid the frustration of traveling to a store that no longer has an item on their shopping lists, said Marissa Mayer, Google's director of consumer products.

Froogle, a comparison shopping site that Google launched three years ago, will continue to give visitors the option to buy the merchandise online. Google receives a commission for the online referrals.

Initially, Google is depending on a contractor to pull the inventory information from several hundred major merchants. The search engine hopes to make the service even comprehensive by encouraging stores to submit their own customized merchandises list to the newly created "Google Base" — an information clearinghouse for everything from family recipes to scientific formulas.

Froogle will pull the product inventory lists from Google Base and include them in its index, Mayer said.

With the busiest shopping season just days away, other major shopping comparison sites also have been upgrading in a bid to lure more traffic. Yahoo Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO - news), perhaps Google's biggest rival, recently expanded its shopping site so it spans 90 million products, up from 60 million a year ago.

Froogle hasn't been nearly as successful as Google's main search engine, which has reigned as the Internet's most popular for several years. In the comparison shopping niche, Froogle ranked as the fifth largest site with 6.36 million unique U.S. visitors during September, according to Nielsen/NetRatings Inc.

The top two comparison sites — E.W. Scripps Co.'s Shopzilla and eBay Inc.'s — each attracted about 15 million unique visitors. They both advertise heavily on Google and Yahoo to lure much of their traffic.

Black Friday Morphs Into Cyber Monday

Gizmodo Got heartburn from the stuffing your mom made and don't feel like hoofing it to the mall the day after Thanksgiving with the rest of the shopping schleps? Looks like this is your lucky year. Now, instead of Black Friday, the day traditional retailers monitor store traffic and sales for the holiday sales season, it's all about Cyber Monday. Yes, that's right folks, now that online holiday shopping has been creeping steadily into store sales, it's time to give the Monday after Thanksgiving a name—and somebody out there thought Cyber Monday sounded good. According to the Research 2005 eHoliday Mood Study, 77 percent of online retailers said that their sales increased substantially last year on this Monday, a trend that is driving serious online discounts and promotions on Cyber Monday this year. So now you can sleep off your turkey and play video games the day after Thanksgiving, and just do your Christmas shopping online. At work. According to the eHoliday Mood Study, 43 percent of online retailers plan to offer special promotions and discounts on Cyber Monday. Deals will range from free shipping to gifts with purchase to percentages off.

Vimeo for Your Videos
What Flickr did for photos ... Vimeo does for Video
Now that about half or more of US Internet users are surfing at broadband speeds, there's a video revolution going down on the Net. Vlogs are popping up all over. iTunes is offering tons of free videos. Third party software developers are coding apps that let dorks like me convert Quicktime videos into iPod-friendly .m4v videos. And now there's Vimeo ... where there are lots and lots and lots of videos to see and share. Many are simply (and illegally) captured from TV. But it's a start ...


Too Tech for the Room
or Another Installment of How Consumer Adoption Requires Simplicity or Else!
Just read the steps necessary to capture Web video and transfer it to your new iPod Video player. It's byzantine at best! Only when someone makes it as easy as "click here to download" will consumeres adopt portable video in large numbers. For now, it's just way too techie.

snapz pro x

Wal-Mart opens new store concept for disaster impacted areas

NOVEMBER 18, 2005 -- Wal-Mart Stores Inc., Bentonville, Ark., yesterday announced the grand opening of the new "Wal-Mart Express" on the site of its formerly damaged Wal-Mart Supercenter in Waveland, Miss. This new store format will offer a merchandise mix solely focused on the unique needs of this community still recovering from the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. Operating more recently as a "tent store" to provide basic needs for residents, the new store will open its doors tomorrow at 8 a.m.

The Wal-Mart Express is a new store concept that differs from the footprint of a typical Wal-Mart store. The 57,000-sq.-ft. store can be entered through the store's original front entrance and is enclosed within the original 205,800-sq.-ft. building by dust-proof, insulated walls. The merchandise mix will differ from a typical Wal-Mart store, focusing on essential items, in the quantities and sizes needed for this community, as they continue to rebuild from the storm. Wal-Mart plans to eventually return the Waveland store to a Wal-Mart Supercenter in the future.

"Cyber Monday" becoming one of the year's biggest online shopping days

NOVEMBER 21, 2005 -- While traditional retailers will be monitoring store traffic and sales on Black Friday (the day after Thanksgiving), online retailers have set their sights on something different: Cyber Monday, the Monday after Thanksgiving, which is becoming one of the biggest online shopping days of the year. For the past few years, online retailers have found that sales on the Monday after Thanksgiving have been creeping higher, giving retailers an additional reason to be jolly during the ceremonial kickoff to the holiday season. According to the Research 2005 eHoliday Mood Study, 77 percent of online retailers said that their sales increased substantially last year on the Monday after Thanksgiving, a trend that is driving serious online discounts and promotions on Cyber Monday this year.

Experts believe that an increase in web traffic could stem from the fact that consumers may have faster or more secure Internet connections at work and choose to shop there, or that they were unable to finish all of their shopping over the Thanksgiving weekend. Analysts also expect many consumers to shop on Cyber Monday from home after work or when their children are sleeping. Regardless of the reason or the time of day, consumers are expected to head online in droves on Cyber Monday, many during work hours.

According to a recent survey, conducted by BIGresearch, more than one third of consumers (37 percent), or 51.7 million people, said they will use Internet access at work to browse or buy gifts online this holiday season. The survey found that more than half of young adults 18-24 (51 percent) and nearly half of those 25-34 (49 percent) will be shopping online during work hours. The survey also found that men (42 percent) are more likely than women (32 percent) to shop at the office.

Podcast "Network" - ODEO
The image “” cannot be displayed, because it contains errors.
The number of outlets offering podcasts is proliferating. That's not new news. Let's watch as the winners and losers emerge and disappear. Here's a good candidate.

DigitalLife TV Podcast - Video via RSS, iTunes and ODEO,1697,1860802,00.asp

And The First Blu-Ray Title Will Be...
By ExtremeTech

Sony Pictures Home Entertainment said Friday that the first title released under the new Blu-Ray format will feature Cameron Diaz's nether regions in full high-def glory. Although the movie never quite reached Academy Award levels of quality, Sony apparently thought highly enough of "Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle" to announce that it would be the first to be released under the new format.

Sony BMG offers MP3 files and disks for unsafe CDs

BARCELONA (Reuters) - In an attempt to make up with consumers whose PCs have been exposed to unsecure copy-protection software which acts like malware, music publisher Sony BMG said on Friday it would swap unsecure CDs for new unprotected disks as well as unprotected MP3 files.
- Link to complete article

A TiVo recorder is seen in this August 9, 2004 file photo. TiVo is expected to announce a plan to allow its users to download any television program stored on their recorders to video iPods, according to a November 21, 2005 story in the Wall Street Journal. (PRNewsFoto/Handout./Reuters)

TiVo Inc. Expands to IPods and PSPs

TiVo Inc. is expanding its video recording service so users will be able to transfer recorded television shows onto Apple Computer Inc.'s iPods or Sony Corp's PlayStation Portable — the latest move aimed at putting TV in people's hands for viewing anywhere.

Sam Goody goes high-tech

NOVEMBER 15, 2005 -- Entertainment retailer Sam Goody, a part of Minnetonka, Minn.-based The Musicland Group Inc., will debut the interactive Reactrix media network in about 100 of its stores. Placed at the front entrance of most Sam Goody stores, the networked media displays will be used to draw mall shoppers into the store and drive advertising sales. Reactrix's visioning technology actually "sees" and responds to consumers' movements as they interact with the programmed media content. Reactrix media mimics video games, the form of entertainment preferred by 12 to 24-year-old consumers, Sam Goody's core target buying audience. Certain Sam Goody locations will also newly be featuring a Graze Bar, a store-within-a-store that allows for interactive CD burning and cell phone sales. The Graze Bar concept was developed by Henke Design and Excel Fixtures.

TV's New Parallel Universe
Broadband's original content makers arrive
Article here

S&P Commentary: The New Triple Threat

Article here

In-Store TV Networks Coming of Age
Wal-Mart Network up 9% in 2005. More than 2850 stores. Wal-Mart launching "check out TV" in Q3-2005. Kroger launches in-store TV network in 2500 stores in Q3-2005 as well.

Providers are IBN ( and PRN (

Digital TV Mandate Set for April 7, 2009

Your rabbit ears won't work after that date. But the Feds have cooked up plans for putting a set top box in every pot! (Ha!)

BitTorrent Lands $8.75MM In Funding
Associated Press c/o
The creator of the popular online file-swapping software BitTorrent has lined up $8.75 million in financing from a venture capital firm in a bid to build his software into a commercial distribution tool for media companies.

Bram Cohen created BitTorrent in 2001 as a hobby after the dot-com crash left him unemployed. Since then, it has become a favorite tool for computer users to swap large files - particularly movies and other video - because it grabs bits from various computer users simultaneously as they send and receive a file. That speeds up transfers.

Nintendo DS + McDonalds Announce WiFi Agreement
Free wireless Internet access in the US starts Nov 14, and then in Europe beginning Nov 25. Access points supplied by US firm Wayport, which is to be paid an "undisclosed sum" by Nintendo. The deal covers nealy 6,000 McD's restaurants. More from the BBC News.
Man playing Nintendo DS at McDonald's

Siemens Closest Yet for Digital Paper Packaging
c/o The Melbourne Age newspaper

Siemens has announced a new colour display screen so thin and flexible it can be printed on to paper or foil, and so cheap it can be used on throw-away packaging.

Podcasters Get Ready for Videocasting Era
Reuters c/o Yahoo News

God Bloggers Hold National Conference
AP Newswire c/o Yahoo! News

This is important: Agencies and clients need to stop thinking of blogs, RSS, the Web, Podcasts and the rest as being appropriate solely for young adult males. Other segments are hyper-active in cyberspace -- evangelicals, tree-huggers, political activists (left and right) and more.

Hollywood Wants A Piece of Video iPod
AP Newswire c/o Yahoo! News

Ad Age Reports - Americans Watch More TV Than Ever
(Is a rash of uncontrollable hair-pulling among agency execs far behind?)

Research conducted by Neilsen Media Research between September 2004 to September 2005 revealed the average American family watched TV eight hours and eleven mintues a day. That's up 2.7%. Ten years ago the average was only seven hours and fifteen minutes.

So why all this chatter about integrated marketing? First of all, there are hundreds of channels and choices that simply didn't exist before. And on-demand services are only beginning to appear. Also, people leave the tube on while surfing the Net, playing games or what not.

More at (subscription required after 14 days)

Digital Music Accounts For Growing Piece Of Global Market

  • The digital music market has more than tripled in a year
  • Sales totaled $790 million in the first half of this year, equivalent to 6 percent of industry sales
  • That compared to $220 million in the same period last year
  • Recorded music sales fell 1.9 percent to a retail value of $13.2 billion in the first half of this year, compared with $13.4 billion in the same period last year
  • The digital boom, which now exceeds the value of the global singles market, was largely driven by sales in the top five markets--the United States, Britain, Japan, Germany, and France
  • Sales of physical formats fell 6.3 percent by value in the period to $12.4 billion, it said
  • Apple Computer Inc.'s iTunes online music store accounts for 82 percent of legal downloads in the United States.
  • The company has sold more than 500 million songs online
  • And about 22 million iPod digital music players

Esther Dyson calls Blogs Overrated
Quoted from article in DIRECT magazine
The author of Release 2.0 and editor-at-large of CNET Networks, Dyson says blogs get way too much press and should only be used by companies under the right circumstances. "Blogs are just one more way to put things up on the Web,"said Dyson while speaking at the conference in Las Vegas, "just a set of words, sometimes with links."
She estimated there are 20 million blogs. But they're not right for every company. "If no one volunteers, don't assign it. If you have to assign it, forget it."

"Dell Takes One Hell of a Blogging"
from Direct magazine

A blogger named Jeff Jarvis has been "calling out" Dell for providing loussy customer service and worse. It's tipped off a bloggers' storm of resentment.

Study - In-Game Ads Boost Brand Awareness
c/o MIT Adverlab
"In-game advertising generated a 60 percent lift in awareness for new products in a study conducted by Nielsen Interactive Entertainment for in-game ad agency Double Fusion. The study also found that animated 3D ads were twice as effective at creating recall as compared to static billboards within the games." -- originally reported on Clickz

game advertising double fusion recall

152 Million US Adults Own a "Mobile Entertainment Device"
c/o The Wireless Weblog
The Wireless Weblog
About 70 percent of the total U.S. adult population (over 152 million) owns some type of portable entertainment device including laptops, music players, and enhanced wireless phones, according to the Consumer Electronics Association (CEA). Of course, this is a huge pool of potential customers for content developers to market their goods and services to. The CEA estimates that consumers will spend over $8 billion dollars in mobile entertainment content over the next 12 months. However, this pool of people is not downloading digital files directly to their PCs or players in large numbers, but you would think that total will rise in the next 12 months as well, if not sooner.

U.K.-retailer, Downtown, broadcasts in-store television from an in-store studio
OCTOBER 03, 2005 -- U.K.-based Downtown, the largest single-site garden center and department store in Europe has this month launched Downtown Superstore TV, a shopping channel, which will broadcast live on Sky channel 640 from a 2000-sq.-ft. glass-sided studio located inside the store's 25-acre complex at Gonerby Moor near Grantham. Downtown attracts 2 million visitors a year, and the channel is estimated to give the retailer access to an additional 2 million shoppers a day. The channel will sell identical products to those available in the Downtown store including furniture, home wares, cosmetics, fashion, gardening tools, hardware and sportswear. It will combine a range of popular programming formats such as reality TV, gaming, chat shows and "shop opera" to make it more than just a shopping medium, but an all-round entertainment channel. Steve Whatley, MD of Superstore TV and joint MD of Downtown Superstore TV, said in a statement: "This is the future for retail offering true multi-channel convergence: on-air, on-line and in-store. As a family owned business Oldrids has the flexibility and vision to invest in this potentially hugely profitable sales mechanism. That they have done so by taking a whole channel is testament to their belief in the potential that TV shopping holds." [ Link to this story here. ]

Mashing Up the Media - Powerpoint Don't Suck!

Former Talking Heads frontman David Byrne began experimenting with Powerpoint in the early 2000s. His work turned serious quickly, and he's exhibited his Powerpoint-based work in galleries, corporate HQs and a book-with-DVD.

Street Corner Confessions for National TV from Bogota
c/o The LA Times via Yahoo! News

Pedestrians in one of South America's largest cities step into a video booth and tell everyday tales of their own lives for a national TV audience. "The clips formed part of the hit show 'Citycapsula,' a weekly compilation of footage of ordinary residents who stop at one of several camera-loaded kiosks around the city and opt to put a few moments of their lives on film."

"The show's inspiration came from a sister channel in Toronto, home to "Speakers Corner," a program named after the famous spot in London's Hyde Park where people station themselves and declaim on any subject under the sun."

PC World

The Near Future for Mobile Phones
At the CTIA Wireless IT & Entertainment expo in San Francisco, speakers and vendors showcased what 's in store for mobile phones in the near term:

1. Streaming video and TV -- bottom line is it's still earlyy
2. Music -- Everybody's looking to play in here
3. Multiplayer Games -- This looks to be a fast pickup
Link to full article here

BlogAds Network Delivers Results for Audi A3 via McKinney-Silver

Article c/o

Kodak Ships Wi-Fi Digital Camera

A Kodak employee, not pictured, demonstrates the Kodak EasyShare-one camera searching for a wireless network at a coffe shop in Rochester, N.Y., Thursday, Sept. 29, 2005. Eastman Kodak Co. has just begun shipping a groundbreaking digital camera that, within range of hotels, coffee shops, airport lounges, offices, homes and other wireless hot spots, can deliver high-quality pictures directly onto the Internet and into e-mail boxes around the globe. (AP Photo/David Duprey)

Priced at $599, the EasyShare-One sends photos and videos via wireless access at home or work. It also works with T-Mobile USA's 6,000 hot spots at stores, airports, hotels, etc. (including for example Starbucks). But, disappointingly, it won't work with other Wi-Fi carriers! More from AP Business News here.

Parking Stripe Advertising

Um ... yeah. That's right. On the strips of painted white lines that separate the cars in the lot. You bet. But brilliant. The company's based in Golden, CO.

Real-Time TV on Mobile Phones -- MobiTV

"MobiTV is the first global multimedia network and technology company providing television and radio services to the 1.6 billion mobile phone and handset users worldwide. The MobiTV® service is available in the US through Sprint PCS, Cingular and several regional carriers; in the United Kingdom through Orange UK; and is now available to Canadian customers through Rogers and Bell Canada. The service offers many popular TV channels such as ESPN 3, MSNBC, ABC News Now, NBC Mobile, CNBC, FOX Sports, The Discovery Channel, The Learning Channel, The Weather Channel, Comedy Time, California Music Channel, Major League Baseball Highlight Channel and others including country-specific channels outside the United States. Founded in 1999, MobiTV is a privately-held company headquartered in Berkeley, CA."

Recent Press --
Especially check out the USA Today article from 9/27/05 and the CNN SquawkBox review video.

SBC + Toyota Prius Plant Virtual Trees Online

The phone giant wants you to give up your paper bill. So it's planting a virtual tree for each customer who goes paperless. Plus they're giving $1 to the National Arbor Day Foundation. And they're giving you a chance to win a Toyota Prius. And you can "visit" your virtual tree (just like a digi-pet, but it's a ... tree.)

It wraps oh-so-nicely in the eco-friendly thematic that ties oh-so-well to the consumer response SBC wants to elicit. Nice program.

Ford Launches Talking Ad Campaign

c/o (reprinted below)

Ford Belgium has launched a speaking ad campaign, called Ford Miracles that, well, speaks. And we're not talking about TV or radio. Created by Ogilvy Belgium and consisting of outdoor posters and customizable e-cards. The campaign site even has a live webcam that is mounted to one of the posters to monitor viewers reactions ... Go to the downloads section to see videos of the spots and other campaign elements.

Family Guys Gets Subservient Chicken Treatment


To promote the release of FOX's The Family Guy DVD, Fuel Industries has created a Subservient Chicken-like site, called Stewie Live, featuring the character Stewie. As is usually the case with these command-based sites, Stewie, of course, burps, farts and has sex. Beyond that, Stewie reacts to 160 commands so far and the list will surely grow. To view an homage to the grand daddy of this genre, be sure to type in the word "chicken."

Wal-Mart in-store TV network viewership up 9 percent
SEPTEMBER 22, 2005
-- Premier Retail Networks (PRN) announced yesterday the results of its most recent viewership research study for the Wal-Mart Television Network, a network of televisions strategically placed throughout Bentonville, Ark.-based Wal-Mart stores that air a customized mix of informative content and advertising. The results from VNU's Nielsen Media Research's 2005 study highlight a 9 percent increase in Wal-Mart TV Network viewership per store (among viewers 10+) as compared to Nielsen's 2004 study. According to the new study the network delivered 49,024 gross impressions per store for the 4-week period measured by Nielsen, a 9 percent increase over the 44,857 impressions in the 2004 study. For Wal-Mart's core demographic of females (F18+), viewership increases were even stronger, resulting in a 24 percent increase in 2005 compared to 2004. The study found that shopper attitudes toward Wal-Mart TV were excellent, 88 percent percent of viewers agreed that the "network is a good thing" for Wal-Mart to offer its customers, 86 percent percent agreed that the "network is informative" and 84 percent agreed that Wal-Mart TV "provides relevant advertising." PRN reports that the network is currently installed in more than 2,800 Wal-Mart stores.
- from DDI Magazine

Here's a backgrounder article from Inc. Magazine