The Wikimedia Foundation has just pulled in a $3 million donation from The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Given claims which were leveled against Wikipedia’s playboy founder Jimmy Wales alleging questionable spending using his expense account, I thought it would be appropriate to suggest some of the more creative things Jimmy could spend the $3 million on.
Let’s cut to the chase. You love the ladies. But there’s absolutely no reason an esteemed digital revolutionary should ever be forced to go to a Moscow massage parlor. Even though the Emperor’s Club is no longer in business, there is no shortage of other agencies ready to provide quality servicing. $3 million for a lifetime of pleasure? Somebody say “bargain”!
Nick Carr called Arrington’s comment that “Recorded music is nothing but marketing material to drive awareness of an artist” the “saddest, stupidest sentence I’ve ever read,” and while I won’t go that far, it does rank up there with the dumbest comments I’ve read on a Web 2.0 blog. No small feat given that some pretty damn stupid things have been said on Web 2.0 blogs.
On June 30, 2007 one of the most addicted kool aid drinkers, Duncan Riley, proclaimed that the seeds of a revolution had been sown and that the “the missing link in Web 2.0’s challenge to network television” had been discovered. What was afoot? According to Duncan, live online video streaming.
So it was with interest that I read Erick Schonfeld’s post “celebrating” the one-year anniversary of Justin.tv, one of Web 2.0’s most useless startups. Erick’s post reveals that in February, less than 300,000 unique visitors wasted time on Justin.tv if comScore’s numbers are to be believed.
Stanford law professor Larry Lessig is going to fix Congress by turning “the political process as we know it upside down.” On Thursday, he announced “an ambitious project that aims to use collaborative software to harness the extraordinary levels of pent-up political energy and dissatisfaction that voters have shown over the past two years with their members of congress.”
Change-congress.org will be a bi-partisan, web-based effort to leverage and amplify the important reform work being done by others. Think of it as a kind of Google-mashup, but applied to politics.
Common sense is back in vogue. From the about the Facebook hype to the Old Media isn’t dying to the growing consumer and advertiser dissatsifaction with user-generated content, it’s clear that common sense is starting to make a comeback, perhaps fueled in part by the best antidote to a kool aid-induced high - a stark economic reality.
Yesterday produced a sign that even those who typically lack common sense (venture capitalists) may be starting to recover from their stupors: Dow Jones VentureSource released 2007’s Web 2.0 funding figures which suggest that the Web 2.0 “investment boom may be peaking.”
How quickly things can change. Just as Bear Stearns shareholders watched BCS close at $4.81 yesterday after closing at $62.30 a week prior, those invested in user-generated content (UGC) must be wondering if they bet on the wrong horse as questions are increasingly being raised about the appeal of UGC, both from a consumer standpoint and a financial standpoint.
Caterina Fake and Stewart Butterfield of Flickr graced the cover of the April 3, 2006 issue of Newsweek with the headline “Putting the ‘We’ in Web.” The accompanying article, “The New Wisdom of the Web,” applauded the UGC phenomenon and the companies that were taking advantage of it.
The now-infamous Sarah Lacy keynote interview of Mark Zuckerberg at SXSW turned into the biggest news story of SXSW. I finally watched some of the “highlights” and while I think it was boring and messy, I also didn’t expect much to begin with anyway. After all, Sarah Lacy is the “journalist” who wrote the BusinessWeek piece hyping Digg and Mark Zuckerberg has about as much personality as my left testicle.
But apparently for some, a shitty keynote has profound implications. In an article entitled “The Sarah Lacy/Mark Zuckerberg Fiasco Has Deep Meaning For Social Media” by BusinessWeek’s Bruce Nussbaum, Bruce suggests that a new model is emerging for these types of keynote interviews.
Even Google can’t monetize social networks. But that hasn’t stopped AOL from making an $850 million bet on social networks as an advertising platform as it was that AOL has acquired popular social network Bebo. Bebo has approximately 40 million users and is most popular in the UK.
As reported by Allen Stern at CenterNetworks, during AOL’s conference call, questions were asked about advertising and how AOL planned to deal with the fact that most social network users just don’t seem to be interested in the advertising. The response: AOL will use “engagement advertising.”
As the United States economy tanks, I’ve noticed quite a bit of arrogance amongst Silicon Valley types who are “This isn’t our bubble.” Many have expressed a sentiment that the serious problems in the greater market would not spill over into the Valley economy. VCs raised nearly $35 billion last year in a show of confidence.
But anybody with common sense knew that such confidence was foolish. Silicon Valley’s economy is part of an “open” platform called the United States economy - it’s not a “walled garden.”
Jason Calacanis’ latest flare-up of chronic foot-in-mouth disease got the Web 2.0 blogosphere’s panties in a knot. Some have lambasted Calacanis for advocating that companies should “Fire people who are not workaholics” while others have come to his defense.
My take? As usual, Calacanis shows that he’s still a few years short of wisdom. So let me throw in my advice.
Productivity is Not Measured in Hours Worked
The workaholic employee who puts in 14 hours each day may not be getting as much done as the more efficient employee who puts in 8 hours each day. Different people work differently - some work harder, some work smarter.keep looking »