July 2008

breakthrough 2009: cultural shift in social marketing

Ze Frank on Breaking the Metaphor of the Web
There’s momentum building here, towards a watershed. In recent weeks we’ve seen VRMWorkshop, big forward steps from Dataportability, Facebook‘s adoption of those principles… I’m sure there’s more – there’s certainly thinking about the problems created by social media

So is 2009 going to be the year in which we get a technical breakthrough, that changes Web 2.0 from being a technical achievement into being social & commercial?

VRM Defined, neatly

My thanks to Tracy Sheridan for posting a succinct description of VRM:

What is Vendor Relationship Management?

We live in a time when the information disparity that used
to exist between what companies know about products and services, and customers
know about those same products and services is decreasing rapidly.So that now, we’re in a position as customers to establish
any kind of relationship we want with companies, enabling them to essentially bid
on our business

This train’s a’comin!

full description, here:
The Long Blonde Tail: What is VRM?

One price to rule the all

EU finally cuts through licensing red tape for digital music


Though this is just one step, equalising content in different countries’ stores removes an inequality,so it’s a step in the right direction. And the legislation faces up to a simple reality – that if content can’t be bought locally & legally, there’s plenty of ways to acquire the same content, illegally, just a click away.

In time this’ll doubtless lead to universal pricing, in Europe, which is what it is. In the UK, it probably means paying less for music. Of course, there may be winners as well as losers – there’s no guarantee that the universal price will be the lowest price.

The legislation appears not to have the support of artists – which can’t be right. And somehow *more* regulation always feels like it’ll result in *less* innovation, in spite of everybody’s best efforts.

Important, non urgent

“The UK needs seven new gas and coal-fired stations, 12 new nuclear
stations and 40 wind farms, as well as 12 major gas storage plants,
according to the CBI.”

The Independent

Yikes! But even if the CBI’s apocalyptic vision were even half true, isn’t this the kind of issue that ‘traditionally’ gets kicked around for years in the UK, and later (much later) some fudge is issued. The Stonehenge bypass is a typical example – £37 million spent on “planning”, over a decade, and there’s still no plan.

I doubt that we’re capable of making these big decisions; there’s always too much history, too many vested interests, one newt species that can’t be moved (but later is) and the environment enriched for all

The likely outcome – around 2014 – Government pushes ‘micro generation’ schemes, hard, to compensate for generating capacity lost to the planning process. There’ll be a rush to photovoltaic panels & wind turbines, led by the Daily Mail (with a jingoistic wartime theme, and competitions to win a lifetime’s power capacity) and the BBC, with power makeover programmes, showing how to cut use and make your own power. Like this and this… but in the style of Changing Rooms.

And the consequence of *not* refining the planning process for the 21st century – our economic development will be hamstrung, by a lack of consistent power supply.

“A report from the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) states that
power outages and problems with power quality are costing the U.S.
economy over $119 billion per year. Called “The Cost of Power
Disturbances to Industrial and Digital Economy Companies,” the study
discusses the growing need for what it calls digital-quality
electricity, which means power that is “always perfect and always on.”” & that’s from 2001 !