Cancelling Copyright or Capping Creativity

8 11 2007

Finding a balance.

An ongoing argument/ discussion with an American lawyer friend about copyright and the current cultural trend of transforming existing copyrighted works. YouTube is filled with video mashups of music and video that has been transformed from it’s original creative intent. Much of this is intended to pay homage to the original creation, some transformations put unusual twists on the work.

Here is a presentation on the topic at TED. And then again there is this organization which promotes such creative freedom.

Smarter people than I will figure this out but everyday I ponder how this might work out. I want it to. I want the freedom to be able to mashup my own take on something using the cultural tools of my day. Still, I don’t want to send artists to the welfare lines because they can’t earn enough money publishing their music in to pay rent.





Facebook’s new ad network is it spywear?

8 11 2007

If Facebook is going to be pimping my profile page, going to use their knowledge of what I’m doing on the site to place ads for partners, shouldn’t I get a cut of the revenue? Why am I feeling very wary of this development? I understand behavioral marketing. But this project is setting off alarm bells for me – me as a user of FB that is.

The Beacon Project as it is known, aims to leverage the way social networks work in a new and potentially revolutionary way by extending the reach of social networks into consumers’ daily Web-based lives. Facebook Ads launched with three parts:

  1. a way for businesses to build pages on Facebook to connect with their audiences;
  2. an ad system that facilitates the spread of brand messages virally through Facebook Social Ads™;
  3. and an interface to gather insights into people’s activity on Facebook that marketers care about.

The first part is logical and I have no problem with this at all. I like to know when I’m interacting with a company. It’s at point 2 that things start to get a little murky. Sure being a “fan-sumer” for brands that I have a good relationship with is not a problem… but will all the ads look like ads and how exactly will my behavioral information be used. I don’t really want to know everything that all my “friends” are doing as they interact with advertisers.





Finding Inspiration & Fighting Stagnation

7 11 2007

It’s all well and good to be a creative sort but every now and again inspiration is difficult to find & we get caught up in old unproductive habits. One of the wonderful things about Web 2.0 is that you can find others living the same thing as you… and together find ways to inspire and advance your art, hobby and well… have fun.

Strictly speaking, a message board or forum is not a Web 2.0 site but there is certainly plenty of social networking going on. In fact, the forums show only a small portion of what’s actually happening on a given site. Personal messaging and profile pages are the source of many a new social connection.

When it comes to photography my preferred inspiration site is FredMiranda.com. The mix of professionals and complete newbies on that site and the atmosphere whereby each and everyone is treated with respect is at the heart of this site’s success. The weekly assignment section receives, on average, 20+ submissions each week. It’s a treat to see someone post there for the first time – I have yet to take the plunge – the constructive criticism and support are well… inspiring.





Do You Microblog?

1 11 2007

Do you even know what it is? Yes, yet another buzzword to add to your day. While you may not have heard of microblogging, you’ve probably come across Twitter. Yes, I Twitter – but in a very limited manner. If it didn’t have so many wonderful benefits and applications I’d hang my head in shame but it’s a great little tool to have in the mix.

So you’ve mastered the art of placing your daily thought/message/status in your IM program and your friends and colleagues enjoy knowing what’s going on with you everyday. Great! You’ve started doing this from time-to-time on your Facebook page. Now comes the ultimate in keeping folks up-to-date with your life/work. Yup… microblogging. Just a line, hardly enough characters to offer a complete thought… and even strangers can follow your feed. Your lifestream, stream of consciousness in brief little snippets for the world to enjoy.

While Twitter is the leader of the pack, there are a couple of runners-up: Jaiku, Tumblr, Pownce and Soup.io

Now if you think that these platforms are only for the teenage crowd, think again. There are multiple benefits for business applications and those applications are vast. The top of the list comes with SEO. This is a great tool for that effort and it works. Several analysts have made recent comments that this is the next big thing and I’m on that bandwagon. After all, anything that can be done in 140 character spaces… well, that’s got to be efficient!