Drama 2.0 Names Zivity the 2007 Startup with the Best Sense of Humor

Posted on January 1, 2008
Filed Under Commercial Interruptions | 1 Comment

I named Zivity one of the Dumbest Startups of 2007 and then provided some critical analysis of the company after it was announced that Zivity co-founder Cyan Banister was going to pose topless to promote the company.

When I opened my email yesterday I noticed an email from Cyan. Immediately I assumed that I had received my first cease and desist notice. Of course, in addition to the fact that Drama 2.0 never posts libel, I’m based out of exotic locales whose governments tend to joke about the United States government. And I don’t even exist, which would complicate things further.

Sorry Robert, Size Does Matter

Posted on December 31, 2007
Filed Under Marketing 2.0 | 7 Comments

Robert Scoble has posted his commentary following the news that Perez Hilton, one of the world’s most popular online personalities, made a paltry $5,000 in revenue from his revenue sharing with YouTube despite the fact that his videos have received 25 million views over the past three months.

In his commentary, Robert proclaims that asking “What’s your audience size?” is the wrong question. Why?

In the past few years I’ve had some success building audiences, but I found that that’s not really what’s important. It’s not what advertisers REALLY care about.

Zivity: Geeks Gone Wild

Posted on December 30, 2007
Filed Under Web 2.0 Kool Aid | 3 Comments

TechCrunch has revealed that Zivity co-founder Cyan Banister, who apparently won some “Sexiest Geek Alive” award that nobody has heard of, plans to post topless photos of herself on Zivity next week and “may go completely nude in the future” to promote her startup. Wow. I’m sure the male species is holding its collective breath. Or not.

For those who are unfamiliar with Zivity, here’s how the company describes itself:

Zivity offers a reality media platform for sexy models and beautiful photography where members get to distribute royalties to the models and photos they find appealing via Zivity’s patent-pending dollar-backed voting system. With a $10 subscription, members receive five votes every month to cast for their favorite Zivity stars.

Drama’s Roundup - December 30, 2008

Posted on December 30, 2007
Filed Under Drama's Roundup | Leave a Comment

Why It’s Interesting: “Elite” universities such at MIT are increasingly making their courses available for free online. While viewers who aren’t students obviously don’t earn degrees, the availability of the same knowledge and course materials that are provided to paying students, many of whom go into substantial debt, is a good thing for individuals who take advantage of it. I’d argue that degrees are of value primarily because of alumni networks and that knowledge and skill can take a hungry individual even further than a degree can. Of course, I’m biased - Drama 2.0 did not attend university. I’ve simply befriended people who went to the best so I can tap into their alumni networks.

Dating 2.0 Debunked

Posted on December 29, 2007
Filed Under Culture & Technology | 6 Comments

The modern dating scene has been impacted greatly by online dating services like Match.com and online social networks like MySpace. Back in 2003 I almost got involved with an online dating venture and thus I’ve given some thought to the online dating phenomenon a number of times over the years. After reading a Reuters article yesterday about an anthropology professor’s study of Canadian women over the age of 30 who are using online dating services, I decided that it would be worthwhile to analyze what has become a part of mainstream culture that affects the way many people are interacting and building relationships.

Surprise: Rich Guys from Google Want to Become Investors

Posted on December 28, 2007
Filed Under VC Insanity | 3 Comments

The New York Times has published an article that discusses the increasing number of Google employees who are leaving Google and deciding to become investors. Some are becoming angels, some are joining VC firms and others are raising their own funds.

TechCrunch has proclaimed “Here Comes The Google Mafia” in reference to the PayPal Mafia that has carved out a niche in Silicon Valley (I hear they control all of the racketeering east of Sand Hill Road). While the legion of Google investors have not yet organized in the same way that the PayPal Mafia has, that could be changing. Former Googler Aydin Senkut, who left Google in 2005 and has been an angel ever since, stated “We are planning to bring all the ex-Googlers who are starting companies and investing in companies together to tighten up the network.”

Taking an Online Life to Regain a Real Life

Posted on December 28, 2007
Filed Under Culture & Technology | Leave a Comment

The Times Online has an interesting article entitled “Facebook suicide: the end of a virtual life.” In a semi-humorous way, it provides a modicum of hope that there still exist people in this world who recognize just how pathetic social networks can be.

The article is interesting if for no other reason than the fact that it touches on quite a few of the subjects I’ve discussed in previous blog posts. Among the most salient points:

Mahalo Needs to Say “A Hui Hou”

Posted on December 28, 2007
Filed Under Web 2.0 Kool Aid | 4 Comments

Human-powered search engine Mahalo, which I named as one of the Dumbest Startups of 2007, really needs to say “a hui hou” (goodbye). Through Center Networks, I was led to a blog post by Mahalo CEO Jason Calacanis that I believe shows just how hopeless this “startup” is.

Any doubts? Just consider the following excerpts from Calacanis’ erudite post:

My thinking is that if you are super upfront about what’s an advertisement and what’s content folks will really focus on the ads *IF* they are in commerce mode. If users are not in commerce mode we don’t want to try and trick them/shif them…. let them stay in information mode.

Drama’s Roundup - December 28, 2007

Posted on December 28, 2007
Filed Under Drama's Roundup | Leave a Comment

Why It’s Interesting: Research firm Basex Inc. estimates that disruptions caused by “information overload” cost the United States $650 billion every year. That’s right, even those useless employees who aren’t wasting time outright are apparently costing American employers hundreds of billions of dollars a year because of technology.

Why It’s Interesting: While I usually pay no attention to predictions except my own (including my personal non-predictions that get stolen by BusinessWeek), ad agency JTW’s “Eighty Things to Watch in 2008″ piqued my interest if for nothing more than its randomness (assisted marriage is the #3 thing to watch in 2008?). I guess next year I’m going to have to up the ante by listing 2009 things to watch in 2009.

BusinessWeek Sucks

Posted on December 27, 2007
Filed Under Commercial Interruptions | 4 Comments

BusinessWeek lost a lot of credibility when it put Kevin Rose on its cover with the headline “How this Kid Made $60 Million in 18 Months.” What little credibility BusinessWeek had left went out the window yesterday when BusinessWeek’s Los Angeles bureau manager Ronald Grover wrote an article entitled “Ten Things That Won’t Happen in 2008″ with a subtitle of “Pundits are eager to provide their predictions for the new year. Here’s something a little different.” Grover states:

…I’m gonna go in a slightly different direction for no reason other than, well, this is my column. And I can.

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