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Tempted to write about the iPad. Please consult this flow-chart http://bit.ly/bAudj3

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“i” symbol will raise fears about advertising, but increase web literacy too…

The icon will be used in online ads that go to users based on demographics.

A mockup of an ad that includes the Power-I icon.

Trying to ward off regulators, the advertising industry has agreed on a standard icon — a little “i” — that it will add to most online ads that use demographics and behavioral data to tell consumers what is happening.

Jules Polonetsky, the co-chairman and director of the Future of Privacy Forum, an advocacy group that helped create the symbol, compared it to the triangle made up of three arrows that tells consumers that something is recyclable.

From this summer in the US, people will be able to tell more about how their behaviour information is being used by media and advertisers to target them by clicking on a little “i” in the corner of display ads.

My sense is that the “i” symbol will simultaneously assuage fears and broaden the debate(s) around online privacy. While many will be happier about the openness of advertisers, for the mainstream user unaware that their clickstream, social graph and search history may informing the ads they see it will represent a new and troubling aspect of web use. Expect in the short term for ad-blocking apps and privacy opt-outs to become more popular.

In the longer term though, it will all be for the best.

Ultimately a better informed, more digitally literate society will make choices about how privacy and relationship between citizens, corporations and government will work. Better that literacy raises sooner so that the dominant voices in debates that may shape legislation are not just those of the advertising and media industries. The implications for our web future are too important for that to be the case.

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By me on the iCrossing Connect blog: How engagement measurement will change the world

Last Friday I presented at the NMAlive event* on Online Engagement Demysitified event, running with the hopeful title “How Engagement Measurement Will Change the World” (see slides above).

As ever, it was a good opportunity to revisit the theme of engagement measurement and think about how we talk about it at iCrossing.

We’ve effectively spent the last four years looking at how you quantify and understand the concept of engagement. It’s only with evidence and actionable analysis that the idea of connected brands, organisations in touch and in dialogue with with their customers and stakeholders online becomes real.

Read the rest at connect.icrossing.co.uk

This conference really got me thinking. This is the first of a few posts on the subject of engagement, I reckon…

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Online media: Finding balance between stock & flow

I’m grateful to Lloyd Shepherd for the point to a post by Robin Sloan called Stock & Flow. Recalling studying for his degree in economics, Robin recalls:

There are two kinds of quantities in the world. Stock is a sta­tic value: money in the bank, or trees in the for est. Flow is a rate of change: fifteen dollars an hour, or three-thousand tooth picks a day. Easy. Too easy.
But I actually think stock and flow is the master metaphor for media today. Here’s what I mean:

  • Flow is the feed. It’s the posts and the tweets. It’s the stream of daily and sub-daily updates that remind peo ple that you exist.
  • Stock is the durable stuff. It’s the content you produce that’s as interest­ing in two months (or two years) as it is today. It’s what people dis cover via search. It’s what spreads slowly but surely, building fans over time.

Over the past few years I’ve thought of hurly-burly of daily online interactions as being very different to the bigger content artefacts I’ve created. In the case of the e-books I wrote for iCrossing, at times they felt a bit like avatars, going off into the world doing their own thing under creative commons…

I’d meet a client and the e-book was already there engaging with various people. It was an eery feeling for someone who’d never been published much before anywhere, your thoughts-as-content travelling the world causing things to happen, people re-using them in all sorts of ways (translating into Chinese, incorporating in textbooks in India, using it as an appendix to a business plan, to name just three).

One challenge is trying to balance out investment of your energy and effort in flow/stock. Interesting especially if you are fitting these things around a day job.

Blog posts are a bit of both really aren’t they. Sometimes they simply let people know you’re still there – hello! – and other times (and you’re not always sure when) they become stock, a focus for a conversation, a defining statement about what you believe, a new turn of phrase that captures an important wisp of the the zeitgeist.

Generally, I walk an erratic personal media path, subject to wild swings into stock or flow. When I was writing my book on personal reputation online last year, I was all stock creation. It took me over to the point of madness. Other times, perhaps toward the end of last year I was living too much in the Twitter stream without much time for reflection, time for creativity to take shape.

As Robin puts it:

And the real magic trick in 2010 is to put them both together. To keep the ball bounc ing with your flow—to main tain that open chan nel of communication—while you work on some kick-ass stock in the back ground. Sac ri fice nei ther. It’s the hybrid strategy.

Balance. Equilibrium. Great idea, so hard to get it right…


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Five Things I know about journalism (news:rewired)

Adam Tinworth (of @adders fame on Twitter) is head of blogging, social etc. at Reed Business Information, and one of the real pioneers of online journalism.

In this slide show he shares five of the most important things he has learned in the past few years. They are simple and compelling rules for anyone who takes their online presence seriously…

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Photos from Likemind Brighton January 2010

I seem to be getting to Likemind Brighton more regularly these days, which is great. It’s monthly gathering in the Redroaster coffee shop, sometimes with a theme – January’s was bringing ?an object that made sound.
You never really know who you’ll meet or what you’ll talk about but I always come away after an hour or two with two or three great ideas – plus nice conversations and amazing coffee. Likemind events take place all around the world on the same day each month – if there is one near you it may be worth checking out.
In the photos you’ll see three sound related objects that took my fancy:
1. An FM3 Buddha Machine:?I’m not sure who brought this along, but it was amazing.?A group called FM3 released its album in this dedicated MP3 player with a speaker built in. There’s a switch on the side which let’s you move forward or backward by one track.
2. A tiny music box thing:?Curtis had punched holes in one strip of paper to play a Kraftwerk medley. Which was nice.
3.?A CD of ReComposed by Carl Craig & Moritz von Oswald:?Will brought this album to Likemind.?It’s amazing and I was utterly besotted with it before I’d listened to it even once.?If you have Spotify you can listen to it here.???

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The Bad Science of scaremongering stats about music downloads

You are killing our creative industries. “Downloading costs billions,” said the Sun. “MORE than 7 million Brits use illegal downloading sites that cost the economy billions of pounds, government advisers said today. Researchers found more than a million people using a download site in ONE day and estimated that in a year they would use £120bn worth of material.”

That’s about a tenth of our GDP. No wonder the Daily Mail was worried too: “The network had 1.3 million users sharing files online at midday on a weekday. If each of those downloaded just one file per day, this would amount to 4.73bn items being consumed for free every year.” Now I am always suspicious of this industry, because they have produced a lot of dodgy figures over the years. I also doubt that every download is lost revenue since, for example, people who download more also buy more music. I’d like more details.

via guardian.co.uk

This dissection of lazy journalism and careless statisticians from last June still makes for very interesting reading…

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The Bad Science of scaremongering stats about music downloads

You are killing our creative industries. “Downloading costs billions,” said the Sun. “MORE than 7 million Brits use illegal downloading sites that cost the economy billions of pounds, government advisers said today. Researchers found more than a million people using a download site in ONE day and estimated that in a year they would use £120bn worth of material.”

That’s about a tenth of our GDP. No wonder the Daily Mail was worried too: “The network had 1.3 million users sharing files online at midday on a weekday. If each of those downloaded just one file per day, this would amount to 4.73bn items being consumed for free every year.” Now I am always suspicious of this industry, because they have produced a lot of dodgy figures over the years. I also doubt that every download is lost revenue since, for example, people who download more also buy more music. I’d like more details.

via guardian.co.uk

This dissection of lazy journalism and careless statisticians from last June still makes for very interesting reading…

Posted via web from Antony’s posterous

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Public notebook

The Bad Science of scaremongering stats about music downloads

You are killing our creative industries. “Downloading costs billions,” said the Sun. “MORE than 7 million Brits use illegal downloading sites that cost the economy billions of pounds, government advisers said today. Researchers found more than a million people using a download site in ONE day and estimated that in a year they would use £120bn worth of material.”

That’s about a tenth of our GDP. No wonder the Daily Mail was worried too: “The network had 1.3 million users sharing files online at midday on a weekday. If each of those downloaded just one file per day, this would amount to 4.73bn items being consumed for free every year.” Now I am always suspicious of this industry, because they have produced a lot of dodgy figures over the years. I also doubt that every download is lost revenue since, for example, people who download more also buy more music. I’d like more details.

via guardian.co.uk

This dissection of lazy journalism and careless statisticians from last June still makes for very interesting reading…

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Nice 2010 trends slides and links from Dan Calladine of Carat

Really enjoyed this presentation from from Dan Calladine of Carat’s Next Generation media series.

I enjoyed it as a link-smorgasbord of interesting sources that fit into various digital trends.

Particularly pleased for the prompt to take a look at stories like:

Via @chriseden

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