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Saturday, February 26, 2005

Choose RSS Spam!

Micro Persuasion doesn't know how new this is, nor do I. But it is absolutely fascinating. One advantage of RSS was the avoidance of spam, because RSS feeders "pull" the info when you want it to, and in addition, you can look at the preview without any graphics, ie ads. And now USAToday.com offers classified advertising feeds. So you can choose (!) to have advertising via your RSS tool.
Incredible. I wonder how many people opt in for that!

Advertising in online games increases sense of realism?

A news clip from clickz:Game Developer Signs a 'Massive' Ad Deal. Not new, this concept, but seemingly a trend developing strongly. Online games with live ads on billboards within the gaming environment are shown to non-subscribers only. A research has apparently shown, that gamers like the ads (as long as they don't interrupt), because they increase the sense of realism in the game. Funny, isn't it? One of the only instances I ever heard of, where advertising provides an added value other than, may be, product information or entertainment through the ad itself.

The idle potential of the blogosphere

Everyone surfing blogdex or other sites of this nature will already have experienced it: you find an interesting topic, but when you land on the blog itself, it's in a language you don't know. So you can't digest the info, you won't link to it and the information is hence not transported further down the network of blogs. This is the one reason I write this blog in English, which is, like it or not, the common language of the web. And I am lucky enough to be able to read both German and English blogs. But when I zap through blogspot blogs, very often I land on, for example, spanish blogs, which I only understand 50% of the times or other languages, which I don't understand at all.
Alwayson has an article on MT (Machine Translation):The Blogosphere: Lost in Translation?. MT is still far from perfect and provides more added value to your surfing, if you're searching for humour and entertainment rather than real translation... But watch the companies that work on it. Should they at some point deliver better results, then it will be the next big thing in the blogosphere and help to connect the sofar through the language barrier disjointed parts of the web.

Cupid's Catapult - simple and viral?

A small and simple game for Hilton Worldwide Resorts: Cupid's Catapult. You have to catapult yourself into the arms of your lover. You can enter a prizedraw to win a romantic holiday...
The nice feature: you can challenge your friends - not only by sending them an invite per email, but also by setting up your own exclusive league in which you only compete against each other.
But will this little extra feature be enough to make it a viral success? Don't know. The game itself isn't really that fascinating. After a few rounds I was tired of it already...

(via)

Kill the Autolink

Nothing on the web can bother people too much until someone codes a solution to it. To continue the google story: here is a code for Killing Google AutoLink. Haven't tested it yet, but will do later on.

Friday, February 25, 2005

I hacked Bruno's Desktop

Here is a great online advertising campaign from Cisco: Hack the hackers desktop. Yes, you can. Go to http://217.110.32.100/ (it's in German) and you can "hack" into Brunos desktop.
Once you're there, you can see his desktop, with everything on it (including photos of his Girlfriend Cisca). And you can see who's also online on his desktop through an intrusion detektor (you can also see what they look at!).

There are many other features, like his personal hacking blog, eCards and his email program with many emails going back and forth between him and Cisca, ending abruptly last Oktober. I guess he was "in prison" for 3 months, having been caught hacking (the last email with the cisco ad of Bruno as a prisoner gives it away - but now he seems to be online again...)

Nicely done with lots of stuff to explore and play around with. I really like online campaigns like that !

(via)

The hype of blog advertising is sooo 90's

One of the headlines these days is that one of the Gawker advertisers pulls out of the deal.
NetworkLandscape has a long interview with Jason Calacanis of weblogs.inc, who tells us a lot about blogging and advertising and the merry future of both together.

But, reading about all these ad-eager bloggers I also read an article in clickz which writes about tracking of online advertising in blogs. Not banners, which are easy to track, but also a new form, ads as a post (which come with comments and trackback like a regular post), which are not so easy to track.
Also, aggregators (RSS Feeds) play another role in distorting the overal statistic of page views and ad views. Another concern by critics is, that bloggers simply talk to each other, implying a small total readership in the blogosphere overal.(via)

I think, the total readership is far from small (27% of the US population reads blogs), so this implies also a multiplier effect any piece of info experiences. And this exactly the reason for all hype around blogs over the last couple of months and years (depending on which country you live in).
But: Even though there is a hype about advertising with blogs in various forms, this has not yet reached anywhere near standard-procedure. So it reminds me of the "good ol' days", when everyone who majored in HTML+Homepage thought they can build an empire based on selling advertising space...

Thursday, February 24, 2005

Using blogs and commentary to underline your ad message

A great idea I read about at adrants: in addition to linking your banner to your own microsite or landing page, have links underneath it, that send the user to a blog or other site that comments in a favourably way about your product. Let others talk, it's much more credible. Look on the banner for a Haruki Murakami book and the text underneath it here.

Enemy on board

A nice idea of Financial Times Deutschland that backfired, because their rival Handelsblatt had a mobile phone cam with him.
Take a look at the photos in this Handelsblatt Blog.
The first one, a truck-billboard, was parked outside the Handelsblatt Offices, with the billboard saying: "a little note for you not to forget to congratulate FTD turning 5 years old".
The second one shows the driver of the truck, reading a Handelsblatt Newspaper...
On second thought - what if this second picture was photoshopped?
Anyhow, I thought it's quite funny.

Help radio42 !

Do you like lounge music? Chilling grooves, downtempo sofasurfer music or latin funk vibes? Or as radio42 says it: FINEST ELECTRONICA CHILLED WITH AMBIENT & DOWNTEMPO, MIXED WITH HOUSE & LATIN, STIRRED WITH NUJAZZ AND BLENDED WITH SOULFUL FUNKY BEATS.
Well, if we want to keep listening to radio42's great music, as I do most of my time at home or at work, we need to help Bernd, who is running this 24h radio station, to set it up outside of Germany (the GVL - a German music licence organization - will charge a lot more money from march onwards, writes Bernd).

He found a viable solution already, working together with "lounge radio" in Switzerland, as you can read on the website. However, he seems to be needing additional server capacity for streaming the music. So who can help, who can offer free a) SHOUTcast Server or b) Windows Media Server with 100MBit/sec. unmetered and guaranteed bandwidth?
If you can help, visit the website, where you can find contact information.

I, for one, would like to thank anyone who can help, in advance, as I love this station (and cannot help myself).

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Want to catch the viral marketing virus? Buy it at eBay!

So, having written about viral in the last post, I now found an hint at adrants that you can now actually buy a viral marketing idea at
eBay! Viral Marketing specialist Asa Bailey has an idea for video clip that he expects to reach several million people in 6 months. And now he is trying to find a sponsor, who can, in return, stick his logo and web address into the clip.
A nice idea, but whoever bids on this should consider whether their product (or brand) has got anything to do with the story or actors, otherwise the clip go viral as hell and still nobody will ever remember who sponsored it...

Monday, February 21, 2005

Let's catch the viral marketing virus

Viral Marketing has long been a buzz word. And continues to be. It is amazing the kind of things advertisers do. McDonalds had the Lincoln Fry campaign, which started as what looked like an ordinary blog (except some people soon expressed doubts about the seriousness of this blog - and they were right).
The blogosphere has finally been "found" by the advertisers. And while some try to influence the bloggers for free word-of-mouth, others just freely sponsor it, like Sony sponsors Lifehacker for 25k a month.
Funnily enough, T-Online opened a section on their site for all the ads that have been sent around via email. (Unfortunately they don't have the "fake" ones of Ford (the evil Ka) and the VW (Suicide Bomber))
And while they publish this, Adland speculates, that the newest talk of the blogs - the hacked Paris Hilton files (see also Gawker, they seem to have transcripts) - is actually a viral setup by T-Mobile (who are a distant cousin of T-Online). Quite a few of the comments at metafilter, which adland refers to, smell some bullshit marketing, too.
On the other hand, let's not forget, how Google is promoting it's GMail: by invitation only. Once you're in, you get to invite 50 of your friends. And since there was a certain press hype already, most people I know are / were eager to try it. So by making access artificially difficult, Google made sure that the invites spread like fleas. (However, now there seems to be an abundance of invites available, as people advertise to give away their invites to anyone - I think Google overestimated the amount of friends people can possibly have that won't get their invites from anyone else at the same time.)
Though these attempts are mostly hype based (in the case of Paris Hilton also celebrity spiced), there are some companies that take a more scientific approach to finding the influencers.
Keith Bates describes some of them and their methods. Basically, it's about setting up databases of the 10% of the population that will take your message to the other 90% that listen. And ultimately it's about feeding these people with the information on YOUR product.
Everyone in the process of making a buying decision will seek advice. And most of this advice is sought through these "everyday experts". We all know them. They know everything about PCs, mobile devices, kitchen interior or cars. Their opinion forms our buying decision more than any advertising can ever do.

Glas vs Greed

A nice thing Werbeblogger refers to on their site: 3M has produced security glas. And what better way to prove their point than actually challenging the public into trying to break it? The incentive: a large stack of cash, as some photos shown in this PDF. I do hope this was (is) a real outdoor campaign and not just a web-thing with fake photos, because I really like the idea!

Sunday, February 20, 2005

The Top 100 Gadgets of All Time

This is not really linked to marketing at all, but being a gadget-geek this truly fascinated me: The Top 100 Gadgets of All Time

template change

The layout has changed. And I had to re-install Haloscan. For some reason, The trackback feature disappears, when I delete or change the Haloscan post below, so that's why it's still there.

Saturday, February 19, 2005

Haloscan commenting and trackback have been added to this blog.

Friday, February 18, 2005

Blog pundits clip

Jackson's Junction refers to a clip of a TV show with an interview of the instapundit (Glenn Reynolds), the wonkette, (Ana Marie Cox), Joe Trippi and Andrew Sullivan - some of the most read bloggers in the blogosphere... Here is a direct link to the clip (a 'highlight'-reel; the full clip needs to be purchased - there is a link for that on Jackson's Junction). Not so much exciting stuff they talk about, for me it was more fascinating to see these bloggers in person...

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Google doing the MS thing

Gary Price of the Searchenginewatch Blog writes about the new Google Toolbar.
It offers
- Spelling Correction (obviously working well with Gmail),
- Autolink - which, as Gary rightly says, offers many commercial opportunities: Google inserts links into the webpage whereever the context allows for relevant links.

I wonder if this will not get too annoying at some point? Addresses on a webpage can even be linked to Google Maps.
He mentions other features, but I won't go into that here. The main point is, that this is another step on arranging information neatly. At the same time, Google is taking the opportunity to once again show that they are really at the top of filtering information on the web.

There are quite a few blogs upset about it. Steven has a post on it and Rex also mentions it, referencing Dan Gillmor, who complains that Google emulates MS (and gets away with it sofar). Greg Linden is also highly scepticle about it.
I have already mentioned in a previous post, that I think we need to watch Google. Sofar everything has been very much user centric and supported users in many ways.
But now they even modify the webpages you're reading. Question is: if this is a trend, when will we reach a stage, when you just can't read original content any more, because someone modified the content on everything you read (without the original authors knowledge or permission?)
Another quote from Greg, which he wrote after several people commented on his first post:

To clarify my original post, I'm not so concerned about what Google Toolbar currently does with Autolink. It is what may follow that bothers me.
Rewriting pages to add links is a dangerous trend. While Google's current implementation may be fine and dandy, it may also be the first step on a slippery slope.

I fully agree!

Are customers really sheep? The myth of corporate image...

A nice article that, in parts, supports my view in this post:
Are customers really sheep? The myth of corporate image....
It basically states that big advertising dollars do no longer necessarily translate in to big corporate image or brand perception...

Praise the Blogs

Peggy Noonan of OpinionJournal has a very interesting article about blogs vs MSM (mainstream media). Something that could actually be the start of a longer discussion. Some of her arguments are clearly striking!
Bloggers should enjoy this and journalists should at least read it...
(via)

PS: this column is referenced in many blogs (surprising?). Here is a good quote from Rex Hammock:

After spending some time with this column, I have to agree with the chorus of neo-Noonanites pointing to her column. This is absolutely, the finest essay ever written about blogging. If you work in publishing and don't read this and take it to heart, you are hopelessly without a clue.

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Not News: Google pay-per-click fraud

I have no idea how the german manager-magazin.de thinks that it is really delivering a newsworthy story about fraud with the pay-per-clicks, since CNN already had this story 2.5 months ago?
I guess for some things I will always have to read international press in order to stay on top of things.
For those interested in a quick reminder: it is about companies hiring people, or using software, to have their competitors pay-per-click ads clicked on. The effect:
1) they increase the ad costs of their competitors,
2) once a certain spent-limit is used up, their competitors will not have the top spot of the list on certain keywords any longer.

Revenge of the Right Brain

Wired opinionates about the added value western civilization can offer at a time, when Asia, Automation and Abundance will have made many typical jobs of the last 10-20 years obsolete. Left-brain jobs, requiring left-brain intelligence, but still jobs of a certain routine to it. Just like machines replaced muscle-power, these routine jobs will be (or have already been) replaced by cheaper means - either in Asia or through automation. And in a world of abundance, most of what has been created by left-brainers might turn into only intellectual "commodities".
The conceptual, creative side will play a greater role soon. Or, as this ambitious quote says:

We've progressed from a society of farmers to a society of factory workers to a society of knowledge workers. And now we're progressing yet again - to a society of creators and empathizers, pattern recognizers, and meaning makers.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Design Matters

What a praise to the value of design in todays web-world. This article says why Design Matters. Working in such an agency as he describes, myself, I agree completely (of course). It's one of the only things to differentiate in a web-world, where tools become more and more commoditized, as the professionalisation of this channel continues. And look at what bloggers first do, when they start a blog (especially at places like this one, blogspot): They change some aspects of the templated design, to differentiate - even I have managed to change background color and font, even though I know not much about coding.

Sunday, February 13, 2005

2005 -- The Year of the Blog

...says this site.
So how do you stand out being only one of a gazillion blogs? This site has some useful tips. I have not yet tried all of them, but will do later.

Saturday, February 12, 2005

Will there be any spot on the web without Google?

Google offers hosting for Wikimedia projects is one of the headlines of the last couple of days.
Just to be more precise: Wikimedia is:
a super project of free content wikis and a wiki engine called MediaWiki that runs them. The Wikimedia wiki projects so far include (oldest first): Wikipedia, Sep11wiki, Wiktionary, Wikiquote, Wikibooks, Wikisource and Wikispecies.
John Hokes hopes:
that this is a good thing in the long run, and that there are no grand schemes to slowly assert any control over the content and day to day operations of Wikimedia in a negative way.
paidcontent thinks more along the lines that I am thinking about:
A possible tie-in with eternal beta Google News? Google Answers? Something completely new?
Let me just recap of a few areas that Google has now moved into:
1) there are, of course, all the search related functions: keywords, images, maps (new), TV programs (new), groups and news.
2) Gmail: you can store 1GB of your emails (and Google even suggest not to delete any of them)
3) Blogger: Google purchased blogger.com (my very own hoster of this great blog) offering free&easy blogging for users without a website and hosting environment
4) Wiki: Google might now also be hosting the wiki projects.

See the pattern? In the not so distant future, Google will know exactly what webusers
- write to each other (over a history of 1GB, including your "social network" and the stuff your network talks about),
- search for (regarding all sorts of media!),
- blog on about, and
- what is worked on and talked about in open wiki environments.
No other company will have such profound data on what's really happening on the web. What the users, who as an aggregate mass, are doing and wanting.
And if there are any other areas on the web, where Google has no part in, I am sure they will soon move there, too.

Given this load of information it is only a matter of computing power (and time) to aggregate comprehensive user trends and profiles. Once they have their ear in every corner of the web, they will have a competitive advantage that I fear we don't fathom yet. We are in the information age, the whole web is about information. And those that manage and utilize the information best, will win. Obvious as it is...

I personally think that Google is soon on its way to overtake Microsoft in terms of relevance and mindshare for the everyday PC user. And they will be a powerful player as far as information on the web is concerned. Not only search, for which they already have cornered the market, but everything regarding intelligent information management.

Is this good or bad? Sofar Google has not charged any money to the everyday user (at least that I know of). If they continue to make money by (relevant, thank god!) advertising through, e.g. Adsense, then it's fine for me. I don't mind a little advertising as long as that means free content.
But if they manage to get even a near-monopoly on information management on the web, they might exploit this and charge users for content. Even though I don't think this is very likely, the danger exists.

Friday, February 11, 2005

Are You Ready for the Cyborg Consumer?

asks Sean Carton of clickz. I have already hinted at that in another post. This article of Sean says what I wanted to add in a later post about the all-ways on consumer, who is in control of where and how he communicates, as well as how he can be reached by any communication, expeciall including advertising, or, more to the point, dialog marketing. And by that I mean (and Sean writes) not the traditional location targetted Marketing of direct mail, but the individualised addressing of the ever more mobile target group. So that's what communication and advertising will have to move to, if they want to keep up with the increasing geographical freedom of communication, that people will enjoy.

Thursday, February 10, 2005

Sidekick II

BUUUAAAH!!! Why do we germans always lag behind when it comes to the coolest toys&trends? Being a gadget freak myself, I am sooo fascinated by the new Sidekick II, even though I already have a blackberry!
What bothers me most: T-Mobile is a german company, yet we are supposed to get excited about the latest "push-to-talk" feature of phones!!

Bad Idea Jeans: Bloggers as Models

Gawker has a post about levis jeans looking for Bloggers as Models. I ask myself the same question as probably most people out there: why? Do they just want to jump onto the blog-bandwagon? Being "cool"? Will it be cool, just because it involves bloggers?? Or what is their objective?
I am curious to see how that develops and what kind of blog-posts I will find around the web concerning this marketing gig. Will keep you "posted".

Gmail Drive shell extension

An interesting tip I found at Lifehacker: the Gmail Drive shell extension. Now you can use the 1GB of your Gmail account as a normal drive on Windows, using this little app to access it like any other drive on you PC. However Lifehacker warns not to store any sensitive information.
The plus-point: you can access 1GB of your data from anywhere on the web, no matter what internet cafe your sitting in...
And if you don't know anyone who can invite to Gmail, look at this other tip from Lifehacker.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Enjoy how western celebrities do get lost in translation

Amazing. I have seen the movie "lost in translation" and wondered about the main character played by Bill Murray going through such a drag just to make a commercial for Whiskey. I just found Japander.com which shows a lot of commercials with western celebrities, and while I watch those, I cannot resist thinking of these people sitting in a dark hotel bar just like Bill Murray did in the movie...

Adrants: PR Blogger Launches Blog Monitoring Service

Blogs will become increasingly important for companies in ways that still have to be prioritised.
Some might try to influence the blog community by trying to feed some advertising information into this viral-style communication channel.
Other might just want to be able to monitor what's going on in order to be able to respond to current consumer debates, which are quite often publizised by blogs.
For these companies, Adrants writes, there is now a company offering blog monitoring services.

Monday, February 07, 2005

LINCOLNFRY.COM

So the lincolnfry really is a fake blog. Funny.
I wasn't paying much attention to this blog, just wondered about it's high ranking at blogdex and only had quick look into the blog a couple of days ago.
Well, yesterday, during the Super Bowl, when they also showed an ad about this, they called the whole scam off and put in a link on the website to a rather clearly McDonalds branded
Flash-Site.

Now they sell it at a yahoo auction (why not ebay? does anyone know?) and it's currently at $21k already!

Somehow I really like this campaign idea, even though they tried fool the blogging community for some time (though I wonder how they got this blog so high up on the blogdex, but I guess that was set up, too).

[21st Feb Update: the lincoln fry sold for around 75k in the end - purchased by the GoldenPalace, who already bought the cheese toast with Marie on it... WHY??]

Alloy to Promote Sulake's Habbo Hotel

Just to add this little piece of info to one of my recent posts: Alloy to Promote Sulake's Habbo Hotel writes Adweek. This article says they're in the US since October, but only now they will do a large push, trying to reach 90% of the teens, as Alloy claims.


Sunday, February 06, 2005

Ultimately, it's going to be about creating experiences for people...

...says John Hayes of American Express about the future of marketing. I highly recommend this Interview with him. Even though it's a few months old, John Hayes says a few things that I agree on, and of which I hope that he continues to be right about.

What really got me to write this was a post, that I found: Gareth Kay wonders about a $200m product placement deal of VW.

NY Times has a story on it. VW can place its cars in movies of Universal, TV shows of NBC and sibling networks, and can even promote its cars on DVDs and in the Universal theme parks.

But no one expects product placement to replace traditional corporate advertising campaigns in the foreseeable future. "The classical communications tools like advertising will always be there and we will always need them," said Dirk Grosse-Leege.
[...]
"But product placement is gaining much more importance," Mr. Grosse-Leege said, noting that some of the money to pay for the deal with NBC Universal will come from the budget for traditional advertising.

Notice the way it's going? Of course, traditional campaigns are not yet a thing of the past. But spending $200m on product placement, while the overal advertising budget of VW and partners is roughly $600m - I call that quite a big step...


Apart from maybe the Super Bowl, where quite a few people aparently TiVO the game (in this case: searching for the ads, skipping the game, instead of vice versa, for which the "verb" TiVO is now used), the traditional "I TELL YOU!" advertising is decreasing. Now it's more of a "let me tell you". Meaning advertisers are more and more trying to find listeners in places and channels where they are more inclined to be receptive to the message. Or story - because that's where advertising, in the case of VW, is trying to find its place. Within a set story.

Ford's British division also paid the author Carole Matthews to mention the Fiesta, a model sold in Europe, in two novels. (Also from the NY Times article)
It's a general trend, that the big advertising $$ are put into other than the traditional media, trying channels that have so far not played such a great role in advertising.
Think about BMW Films or the American Express Seinfeld Episodes (which don't seem to be online any longer). Several minute long films, that sit happily on the web waiting for users to find and enjoy them. And the story isn't even about the car. The car is only one accessory of the story.

Or think about Online Games. PepsiCo chose to launch its soft drink, Mountain Dew, in Finland almost exclusively through Habbo Hotel. This was more of a sponsorship, I think, but the trend of ads in online games is huge, as online games outgrow traditional single-player desktop games.

The media landscape is continously fragmenting with the target audience increasingly in control. And while this statement isn't new, I think we still haven't seen the least of this development. John Hayes of American Express said last year, that they now only spend 35% of their budget on TV, coming from around 80% a decade ago.
Wait for more exciting announcements of big companies shifting their advertising budgets, as the consumer is all-ways on.



Saturday, February 05, 2005

Advertisers gear up for Super Bowl frenzy

The MediaGuardian also gossips a little about the upcoming Super Bowl Ad Frenzy.
I was surprised to find out that Budweiser does 20 spots just to choose which one to air. And I am even more surprised to read that they buy 5 minutes of airtime. At roughly $2.4m per :30s spot, that's, errr, $20.8m. On the other hand, there is no other chance during the course of the year to reach up to 90m viewers within the same 30 seconds...

I particularly like the last sentence of this article (it relates to something I will post later on, which is still in draft, as it will be a little bit longer):
For one day of the year at least the ad industry can pretend it is back in the good old simple days of the mass communications era. And with 90 million watching, it's easy to see why.

Super Bowl XXXIX Advertising Bonanza

Through a tip from cup of java I found the Super Bowl section on AdLand ad-rag.com. It has scripts and information for quite a few of the spots coming up tomorrow. Good work by the adgrunts at adland! I won't be able to watch the game anyway, so it is interesting for me to see what's coming up. Anyone else who prefers to be surprised tomorrow: don't visit that site :)

Russell Beattie Notebook - Singles and Posts

Russell Beattie wonders, if people will pay 1/3 of a cent to read his post. I am not sure I would.
One of his commentators rightly said that there is still a lot of "cheaper" content out there. And I just wouldn't want to go through a payment procedure, however simple it was, in order to be able to casually surf around blogs. I much prefer ads, which my mind blocks outs automatically (at least the standard ones), and thereby have others "pay" for my entertainment...

Friday, February 04, 2005

Reuters.com picture stories

Here is something neat: Picture stories of current events, "saying more than a thousand words", at Reuters.com.

Foxylicious - Firefox and del.icio.us bookmark integration

Now you can even integrate you del.icio.us bookmarks into Firefox via Foxylicious writes Dietrich Ayala

Google Goes Local with Beta Search

OK, here it actually says that it is only available in the US and Canada. Found this thanks to the comment by Jim.

Google local

Just tried the new Google local search, which is still in beta. It was smart enough to see that I am from Germany (everything was in German), but it failed to give me any results for pizza in Frankfurt (or Germany in general), which is a shame, because I know of at least 2 pizza places right around the corner. :)

Trackback added

I have added Trackback now, see if that is of much use...
And I also added a counter (invisible - I don't want anyone to see the desastrous low number of visits).

False story alert: Women in Germany probably not being forced into prostitution by welfare state

OK, I am relieved to read: False story alert: Women in Germany probably not being forced into prostitution by welfare state.
I have not read or seen anything on the German news to confirm this story about women having to take up jobs at a brothel in order to not loose their benefits, either. And with Alison's research result I do think the telegraph story was wrong.

Wednesday, February 02, 2005

Musings

Sometimes I really wonder what people think they need to tell the community. Over at Musings, the guy let's everyone know about the last 10 songs played on his iPod...

Off Topic

Even though I think it was a good move to change the law, in order to let those already working in brothels benefit from our social security system, I have to say it completely backfired. If it's true what the Telegraphwrites.

AdCritic.com: Interactive

AdCritic.com has a "new" section on interactive advertising. At least they claim it's new. I wouldn't know. But I'll check that out more frequently now...

As I went down the list of articles, I noticed that this site has been there for some time already. Hope they update it frequently.

free stock photography

there doesn't seem to be a catch to it. Free stock photos atstock.xchng.
Hopefully the quality will be high, as they
...always try to evaluate the photos from the end users' (mainly designers - since we are designers aswell) point of view.

Hide Your IPod, Here Comes Bill

Truly stupid: at Microsoft, you get into trouble for owning an iPod, writesWired News.

So concerned is management, owning an iPod at Microsoft is beginning to become impolitic, the manager said. Employees are hiding their iPods by swapping the telltale white headphones for a less conspicuous pair.

HP vs IBM & Co

Apparently, HP is up and coming, having developed a new technology to replace the transistor, which has ruled computing in various forms (becoming smaller and smaller) up until today. It'll be interesting to see if this takes of in the mentioned timeframe. Here is the story at CNN.
I just wonder, if home-user will _really_ benefit from this? (I know, this is not only about home computing, but that's not my point.) I have a rather fast&evil machine now, and I doubt I use more than 50% of its capacity, even if I try. I don't do video-editing, I admit, but for everything else: why? why such great computing power?

radio42 : Music for LOUNGE-LOVERS.

Oh, and while I was typing away about Universdj, I was listening to radio42. This is a fantastic internet radio-station! It runs constantly, whether I am at work or at home... Try it! (and I don't get paid for writing this...)

Univers DJ : Garage & Soulful house for bright people !

A side reference, not necessarily something to do with advertising that like, but if you like good house, clubbing and dance music, check out Univers DJ. It's a french website, but don't worry, there is an "English" button, as well. You need to sign in, if you want to download (where was that bugmenot again?), but it's well worth it. You get 1-2h long DJ-sessions from DJs all over Paris and France. Great Music!

bugmenot III

Ok, after having read a little more into the story of bugmenot.com, I can see that even though this was announced as something rather new on the lifehacker blog, it has been, in fact, discussed for about a year now at the Poynter.

Tuesday, February 01, 2005

bugmenot II

well just tried it on one of the major news papers and it didn't work. Don't know if this is, because they blocked it or if the service is not running properly. But I will try somewhere else sometime.
And furthermore, it didn't work at the sites that lifehacker specifically mentioned. What use is that article of lifehacker then, if they didn't try it?

BugMeNot.com

Something I just found at Lifehacker, (whilst learning what the site is really about): BugMeNot.com. Good for bypassing compulsory web registration. Why do that? Here is an explanation by the folks themselves:

"It's a breach of privacy.
Sites don't have a great track record with the whole spam thing.
It's contrary to the fundamental spirit of the net. Just ask Google.
It's pointless due to the significant percentage of users who enter fake demographic details anyway.
It's a waste of time.
It's annoying as hell.
Imagine if every site required registration to access content."


About ethics - that is being discussed
here. Good news for the site owners: if they really wanted to, they can be put on a "blocked" list - which sounds as if bugmenot will not work on this site then. I couldn't try it, of course, but why would I want to?

As a marketer, I should be happy if my clients collect data about their users, as this enables me to target them better with my advertising. But as a user, I don't want that. It's a funny catch 22 I am in. Before 7pm, I want the data, after 7pm, I don't want to give it. And now I am trying this on a site, which didn't let me in sofar without registering...

correction

I have to correct one of my posts from below. Lifehacker is actually part of the gawker sites. No wonder they are sponsored with large ads, etc.
I never came across these yet and didn't know what gawker is. Might call me ignorant, bud as I also surf a lot on german websites, I guess quite a few .com addresses sofar slipped my attention. But that is now changing, as I started this blog (and continously snoop around all the other blogs that are somewhat related to my interest...

B2B shoppers search online

Working mostly for B2B clients at our agency, I still face the occasional doubt about the relevance of our medium in advertising and more important, lead generation. (Folks in the US, this might come as somewhat as a surprise to you, but this still is the case quite often, when our clients discuss where to spend their budgets)
Here and now I found a link that supports my argumentation that online works in B2B. I had found others in the past, but my blog is only a few days old, and I am too lazy to search for these artivles now.
It's at eMARKET (german site).

Thinknets - Iconoculture

Over at iconoculture, they have an article about Thinknets

They say, that
Traditional think tanks are evolving into “thinknets” (a.k.a. transnational thinknets) where great minds collaborate across the globe.

Now they do realize, that the idea is not new, and apparently the US Navy explored things like that in the late 90s.
It's interesting stuff, considering how the net changes the way people work on things across the globe.
Isn't the whole wiki movement and, in a way, the blogosphere already doing that? Admittingly, the blogosphere is a rather chaotic grouping of thoughts and ideas, but you can see how certain themes run across several blogs, for example at blogdex.

Hallelujah, the Mac is back

Hallelujah, the Mac is back says Salon.com. Just found this, and as I was writing about the iPod frenzy earlier on, I thought this should be mentioned.

Embrace the Blogosphere

"The blogosphere is new and unproven in the marketing mix, but its influence is growing quickly" says Mark Kingdon at clickz. But just how can marketers use this channel? For one, they can by adspace, either from Google, or now, apparently, from Burst Media. Or look at Lifehacker, a blog where it is not clear any longer, whether the author is sponsored or bought by the advertiser.
I don't think blogging and advertising fit together. I personally prefer to read blogs that portrait an independent view. And this is only really credible, if you don't get paid by anyone who might different interests...

Me and my iPod

Still going on about the iPod - you rarely find products that have such a strong fan-base that people even take a picture of themselves together with the product to show to complete strangers by posting it in places like the iPod Photo Galleries. I wonder which other products experience this kind of enthusiasm?

Successful iPod Ad - and Apple didn't pay a dime

George Masters likes Apples iPod. So he produced another word-of-mouth success-story. His spot, made without Apple even knowing about it, was viewed 76.000 times sofar and continues to make press.