Future Case

Crossmedia, Social, Mobile, Business Modeling, Marketing, Research and insights

Posts Tagged ‘crossmedia

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This post also appears in Crossmedialab.nl, the readership Crossmedia Business’ digital get-together.

As the academic year has kicked off in all its traditions a particular good custom, that is to write and post blogs, now commences for our readership Crossmedia Business. Of course, writing activity has not been down to a total zero during summer. For instance Dennis Ringersma  took up the role of ‘our man in Africa’ with a number of posts on exotic places like Malawi, South Africa and what have we down there in the south of that hugh continent. And Rogier Brussee and Harry van Vliet also contributed once or twice. But now the members of the readership have committed themselves to a tight publication schedule. And as it happens to be, I am numero uno to respect that schedule.

So, what’s new and relevant to know? Who knows. So much has happened and is happening hat a ‘quer durch’ is not an easy task. I’ll just stick to what I suppose are important issues; stuff that might have an impact on our lives.

We’ll start off with the biggies; the macro stuff.

  1. Steve Jobs has retired; Tim Cook is his apprentice so Apple company lost a couple of billions. Meanwhile, an Apple co-worker has forgotten his proto iPhone 5 in a bar (haven’t we heard that song before). But as it is, the construction of Apple’s new and utopic HQ has started. And to wrap up the news on the world’s most expensive company; roughly a week ago, a Dutch court issued injunction against Samsung Galaxy phones  due to scrupleless copying of Apple artifacts.
  2. Last thirty August, email  celebrated its thirtieth birthday as V. A. Shiva, who copyrighted the name recalls: “When I first heard the word ‘electronic mail,’ I literally felt it was sending electricity through paper. Those two words juxtaposed together in 1978 were absolutely new,” says Shiva. While many claim to have “invented email” the issue isn’t just one of semantics. With electronic messaging systems in place, Shiva is responsible for having transformed what was known as office mail into the very first email system. “That is what I developed, starting in 1978, as a 14-year old, for which in 1981 I was awarded recognition by the Westinghouse Science Awards for innovation, and in 1982 the First US Copyright for EMAIL,” he writes.
  3. Tell me which browser you use and I’ll tell you how stupid you are, as a #3 macro news flash, a study proves that IE users are dumber than those who Opera and Chrome. I’ve got some nice statistics on that right here  if you don’t believe me:

So, be honest. Which browser do you use?

On a meso level, there have been some interesting changes as well. Let’s define meso as your tangible but not intimate ubiquity (ahumm)., i.e. the faculty, public transport, train stations and the shopping centers of towns. It could also been something like Yammer.

  1. Just before summer break a graduate presented a system of face recognition for tailored narrow casting commercials. Kind of spooky but interesting as such. The idea is that you walk by the LCD screen in a shopping mall. Two cameras record your face and based on a number of criteria decide that you are rather more a white Caucasian male than an Ethiopian woman. The computer than selects a beer commercial which is than narrow casted. Of course I then get an instant desire to have a beer. The original software originates from Israel. Makes me wonder.
  2. In the US, Redbox  is successfully testing the use of mobile in their process of renting out DVD’s. For me, this is very interesting as it concerns LBS (Location Based Service). And that’s exactly what I am interested in currently. After seeing thousands of Foursquare check-ins without the benefit of any promotion, Redbox is now testing the geo-social marketing waters. Consumers who check in at one of its 28,700 kiosks in the US to rent a film (on an old fashion medium as DVD is, p-0will receive a discount code for between 10 cents and $1 off their video rental. The discount can be used immediately. I think I will have my students Mobile Business Design have a look into that ball game after we have started (the minor is due for next week. I’ll tell you about it later).
  3. Number 3 on the meso scale is the shopable video. Seriously. Gucci has used a clikable video for its pre-fall campaign. I’m really sorry I can’t embed the film. It needs a Flash player and a data base, I recon. So here is the link straight to Luxury Daily  who reported on this rather nice feature only a couple of weeks ago.

And now the micro level. This is the personal level, the intimate zone as Edward Hall called it already way back in the sixties of the 20th century. A word as closeness would be important. Nearness would fit too. Both word have a zen connotation to it, as far as I’m concerned but not having a proper alternative, I’ll just use them. Stuff on the micro level means that is within your reach, always there (ubiquity). I believe that the mobile phone rather fits in nicely to that definition. And as it happens to be, the use of mobile phone has risen to unprecedented heights. As I will not discuss individual apps, let’s focus on how this all became reality. A particular good way of looking at it are the thoughts of Marco Ahtisaari, currently head of design of Nokia. Already a couple of years ago, he published some writing on his blog called ‘Blogging over Las Vegas’ . So what does he think made the rise – growth – of mobile possible?“ Three features stand out” as Marco writes:

  1. An object with a social function tied to a service. The primary human benefit driving the growth of the mobile industry was that of social interaction, people connecting with each other. Initially this meant calling people – a familiar activity at the time – but with a new twist: the cord had been cut. Over time this began to also mean sending short text messages.
  2. Service providers – mobile operators – subsidizing price. To compete for customers those providing voice and messaging services subsidized – in markets where this was legally possibly – the price of the mobile devices in exchange for a longer term customer relationship. As a result end customers rarely saw the full price of the device and the infrastructure combining both devices and networks was rolled out at unprecedented speed.
  3. The shift from a familiar collective object to a personal object. The last, and often overlooked, feature of the mobile industry is that it was based on a shift from a familiar collective object – the family phone – to a personal object, the mobile phone. The idea of a personal phone simply did not exist in the popular consciousness 20 years ago.”

This then brings me to a crossover in my train of current thoughts and stops at the station of the theory of social object as defined by Jyri Engeström a rather brilliant socialogist from Helsinki (just like his dad). I suggest you read his “Why some social network services work and others don’t — Or: the case for object-centered sociality”  so we can have a constructive discussion.

To wrap it all up, that’s more or less my summer recordings, apart from a lovely time in good’ol Thueringen Germany. But that’s a bit too much of a personal story.

Written by Kees Winkel

September 4, 2011 at 11:46

Mobile video expands brand loyalty cross-platform – Luxury Daily – Mobile

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Luxury brands that incorporate mobile video into their marketing strategies have an increased chance of consumer engagement, reach and loyalty.

Mobile video can be used with other mobile tactics such as SMS or QR codes or can be integrated into other channels such as in-store or out-of-home ads. Luxury brands that use mobile video can show off products, display behind-the-scenes footage and induce spending.

“The most important offer is extended brand reach,” said Jonathan Cobb, San Francisco-based general manager and chief technology officer of mobility and monetization solutions at Limelight Networks. “For instance, it allows brands to reach consumers on-the-go, whether they’re waiting in-line or sitting on the train.

“Brands can develop mobile videos that are different than the videos on their online sites, providing a more unique experience for the mobile consumer,” he said.

via Mobile video expands brand loyalty cross-platform – Luxury Daily – Mobile.

Written by Kees Winkel

August 19, 2011 at 13:49

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Digital Communication, why won’t kids choose for it?

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Originally posted at www.crossmedialab.nl on 28 June 2010

Perhaps I am a bit occupationally deformed when it comes down to (digital) media. That’s probably because I’ve been in the media business for three decades. That must have lead to full incorporation of media as such in my life. Sometimes it is hard to understand that what I regard as important may be of utter uselessness to others who just take the media as they are. But then again, media are in every people’s lives, whether one likes it or not

So, media are important. There is no doubt about that. All of us are informed and persuaded through the media, may they be analogue or digital.
So, one may think that I am not the only one who regards the media as a very relevant phenomena in our society. Every year a couple of hundreds of youngsters enter our venue in Utrecht to leave it again after an odd four years as communication professionals. Most of these young colleagues know hardly anything mentionable regarding digital media. That is a disgrace. One should think that with the up rise of digital media would cause a natural effect on young people who want to do ‘something’ with communication. Apparently that thought is a no go.

Our fabulous education Digital Communication can’t get enough students. Kids who need to choose what to do when they grow up hardly ever consider that the future of communication and media is in digital, more specifically mobile. At least, according to me.

To wrap up, MOCOM 2020 has published this:
Approximately 60% of the world’s population has a mobile device used predominately for voice communication;data still remains a small component. Mobile communications are a delivery and transactional vehicle that fosters job creation in emerging economies and can transform other industries such as health, banking oreducation. Adirect correlation exists between increased mobile phone penetration and increased macro-and micro-economic development.
The vision for the future of mobile communications is a fully interconnected world where every citizen will access, create and use content. This is the fastest growing technology in the history of mankind and is also the most effective technology known to date to enable individuals, particularly those at the base of the pyramid, to participate in the global economy.
The nearly 4 billion mobile phone subscribers in the world are realizing multiple macro- and micro-economic and social benefits. This will only continue as more individuals become connected to the global economy and more products and services are deployed. Council Members coined the phrase “Humanity’s Nervous System” to describe this interconnected and highly personalized world.
As an industry, mobile communications are relatively recession-proof and will continue to experience growth, create jobs and unlock innovation. Economic crises result in change – as such, mobile communications will play a huge role in reducing current inefficiencies and raising the productivity of both individuals and businesses.
Three fundamental dimensions impact the future of mobile communications:
1. Access: the ability for individuals to utilize both voice and data mobile communications ubiquitously
• • Key enablers for access include:
– cost reduction of services (infrastructure sharing, handset recycling)
– a global regulatory framework with the removal of mobile specific taxes and over-regulation
• • Key uncertainties include:
– whether universal access is a fundamental human right
– whether we should strive for regulated universal access or defer to market forces
2. Applications/Platforms: the value added services and capabilities available to end-users which would be an extension of the larger public Internet
Key applications for improving the state of the world would include health, education and financial services.
• • Key enablers include:
– an open and interoperable system which creates opportunities for “bottom-up” innovation
– the increasing sophistication of handsets and user experience
• • Key uncertainties include:
– why there hasn’t been greater uptake in health, education and financial service mobile applications given rapid global subscriber adoption
– regulation with mobile banking and financial services
– who pays: financing for health and education
– the literacy challenge of those who only require a phone for voice services
3. Data Ownership (and Associated Personal Rights): the information generated and gathered on individual behaviours and transactions.
This wealth of information holds tremendous transformative potential but clear rules and transparent regulatory frameworks are needed to ensure personal wealth creation and
the prevention of abuses.
• Key enablers include:
– ownership: you own your own data
– accountability: a “post-privacy view” using watermarks to create an audit trail of who uses it
– use of anonymous and aggregated data to create new socially intelligent applications (i.e. health, urban logistics, government services)
• • Key challenges include:
– establishment of a global framework for data usage and protection
– general awareness of this dimension and its broad and fundamental power
– privacy and security of data and application
– liability of data ownership or management

Written by Kees Winkel

July 28, 2010 at 12:37

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Pandora’s Neocracy #4, mobile conventions and education

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Originally poste at www.crossmedialab.nl on 1 April 2010.

VPRO (Dutch public broadcasting member) wishes to position itself as a taste community, interacting, participating, broad- and narrowcasting both DIY and prescribed content through any given media. Ergo, it positions itself as a full Monty crossmedia media brand that will incorporate any given media as log as it reaches its target audiences and – this is rather important – those audiences reach each other as well. Rising star on its firmament is mobile. During the VPRO’s presentation at the Mobile Convention in Amsterdam today, VPRO’s Erik van Heeswijk, editor in chief of the digital department, gave a stunning example. I am really sorry I haven’t got the film yet about the crossmediality of the particular example of ‘Beagle’, VPRO’s contribution to the Darwin year. This is a true crossmedia concept with blogs, a mobile site, 1050 minutes of quality TV, radio, print (both specific publications and their TV guide), etc. They also make use of third party media like Youtube, Hyves and LinkedIn. This production must have cost quite an amount. But fortunately, Van Heeswijk replied my question whether he is obliged to share their gained knowledge and expertise with the society – as VPRO is doing this great work with public money, say tax money – with a full YES. In fact, he added, he would like to encourage this. (I’ll give him a ring next week.) Mobile, as he mentioned will become a key devices through which people will look, listen, interact and participate in his community of taste. That’s one way of looking at will is going on and what will happen in the future regarding mobile.

The convention nearly exploded with near future examples, experiments and existing services now available for any given OS. I wasn’t really amazed by the fact that iPhone users, representing approx 6% of the shipment rate, generate 43% of the mobile Internet share whilst Nokia with its 49% shipment rate only does 15%. Android is the runner up with respective 8% generating 11%; not doing badly at all. At least, according to Sanoma Digital’s enlightened Menno Bieslot. Sanoma should know. They do 68 million page views per months with their mobile site nu.nl alone. Even more interesting is the moment of consumption during the arch of a day. Guess what, mobile content consumption of nu.nl peaks as soon as 6 AM when people start waking up than goes down and peaks again towards the wee hours as of 10 PM. Sanoma is obviously preparing for a shift in media choice of consumers as they are bringing out entire magazine title aps for iPad (such as their blockbuster Autoweek, what an ap!) and, again similar devices from different brands with different OS’s (HP, Microsoft, they are all preparing t attack Apple with its new goodie).

So that’s one side of what the world is made ready for. All is marketing. Who would need all these novelties? As usual, it is a matter of creating demand and that’s what we’re good at. That is what Blutarsky & Muzar showed us in their workshop on how to use AR (augmented reality) to introduce the new Splinter Cell game for the Xbox 360. As of April 15, one can walk around Amsterdam and augment their world with location-based fantasy by means of a layer and some QR’s. Participants are challenged to play the game in a semi-real environment; A real treat for gamers (personally I dislike shooters, guess I’m too much of a VPRO-taste community node to like to play war games).

And than there was Yuri van Geest. Sorry, he was the one I started out with in the first morning session. He’s with MobileMonday and quoted – my day was made already at that moment – Paul Saffo who is with IFTF, Institute For The Future. It’s not just Saffo who inspires me, it’s Van Geest as well. Way too short was his presentation. Talked about singularity and what the Singularity University, an initiative of NASA and Google, are cooking up regarding what mobility will really be about in the (not so distant) future. His vision is that of the merge of DIY (do it yourself) DNA and mobile communication systems. To some this may sound scary. To me it sounds like something that is still a bit far away but most likely ‘coming soon in this theatre’.

So, where’s the neocracy? Don’t know! Van Geest quoted Saffo, saying that new technology such as the convergence of biology and technology takes its time in the beginning. Then it depends on, God knows what, acceleration complexities and turn into a tipping point, as Gladwell calls it. Pfffff.
Central theme as I see it in our world today is the convergence of mobile and social networking. Russell Buckley and Andrew Grill talked about it as well in their keynote speeches. This convergence is the first major new step in our Darwinist society in which action leads to reaction.

Now, how does this all translate to what one of the research group obligations is; education? One essential part of the training of bachelors is that they apply to a so-called minor. During the period of a half-year, they than either deepen a specific topic or broaden their perspective. It is their choice. So, last March 25, our university organized, as usual, a minor market. Three hundred minors were literarily marketed during a two and a half hours market floorshow that has something of the ant-like atmosphere of the Damascus souk and the crowdedness Albert Cuypmarkt during a gentle summer Saturday afternoon. Strange things occur. Some minors are frantically bombarded with interest of our brave youngsters; some minors may only experience an utter glimpse of disinterest. Well, I guess it is pretty much like the real thing and as my motto goes, all is marketing.

One may argue about what marketing actually is and whether the offering of education should be ‘soled’. Fact remains that it is usance to sell individual minors in a market setting one afternoon per year at one location in an overheated hall of a faculty at our campus. I recon this is food for thought for policy makers and visionaries in our fine academic community.

So, I went to sell our new minor Mobile Business Design. As the initiator of this completely new educational wonder I, quite obviously, evangelized my baby as probably the best thing rising star communication experts need to join with only one restriction; we only accept thirty students to participate in this introduction to what will happen tomorrow and is being instigated today. Ahum.

Education is a strange phenomenon these days. Of course the offer is massive and it might well be very difficult to choose the right education. One other thing really struck me when scrolling through the aisles of plenty in our market place. Apart from an occasional minor offer that serves the ongoing development of our society and digital life in particular, hardly any minor pamphlet spoke of where (what) we are heading for. Ergo, there is apparent anticipation on the shifting paradigms in society by teachers and students. I find that strange. No minor futurology, no minor on tomorrow’s usage and acceptance of technology, hardly a word on the changing communication behavior of people, collective organization through Twitter of revolting people or the implications of mobile games, played on a smart phone. (Hardly) nothing of the sort.

There is another issue that struck me (at least a bit), digging into the concaves education and modern media as I wearily returned to our faculty hat day. Neither teachers nor students step into the lobby and open their mobile to synchronize the information provision given by our faculty bureau. There are two ways of looking at this. One, our teachers and students don’t want to have relevant information on their mobiles, two, the faculty does not disseminate relevant faculty information to mobiles. Regarding those two options I would say that neither is applicable (don’t read me wrong, there is the third option – that of no relevant information – which is, of course, not true). I’d say that the desire to have relevant information on one’s phone is not relevant yet because there is no offering yet, hence, no desire. Fortunately we now have our university’s first mobile site online: m.voorlichting.hu.nl. At least that is a start.
Now let our minor students cook up something of a killer app or a way of getting people to accept all these novelties and embrace them as signs of progress. No, better, let them cook up glorious ideas to enrich our lives through crossmedial and predominantly mobile enablers.

Written by Kees Winkel

July 28, 2010 at 12:32

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Pandora’s Neocracy #1

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I got the idea to write what I would like to call Pandora’s Neocracy. Currently there are five and I am planning more. This first one was, once again, published on www.crossmedialab.nl on 29 November 2009.

Let’s not argue over the fact whether Pandora had a box or a jar. According to my source her original container was called pithos. Whatever may be the ultimate truth, as we may learn from Greek mythology, Pandora gave us ills, toils and sickness. And hope. Zeus ordered his friend Hephaestus to create a woman – Pandora – to punish mankind after Prometheus stole the secret of fire. As the story goes, Pandora had been given a large jar [pithos] and instruction by Zeus to keep it closed, but she had also been given the gift of curiosity, and ultimately opened it. When she opened it, all of the evils, ills, diseases, and burdensome labor that mankind had not known previously, escaped from the jar, but it is said, that at the very bottom of her box, there lay hope, good old hope. Apparently, once Pandora understood what had been in her pithos, she quickly closed it.

Just imagine the blame that came upon Pandora. She had been created by the Gods to give man all he disputes. Pandora had been made to show the world, no better, experience the downside of what we are. Let us believe for a moment that these pre-Christian Gods were never distilled from the human brain but actually were the existing creators of all we are. Were they than not the first to deliver us hope by feeding us with curiosity (open the frapping thing up, Pandora!), hope and, ultimately, our search for a better world; Utopia? We should thank Zeus and his merry band up there on Acropolis.

It was the great humanist Thomas More who came up with the word Utopia. On his island Oceania, all would lead a perfect life. People would work to earn an income (in those days a pretty innovative approach), each would have the same rights and obligations and there would be perfect harmony. A propos, if people would not cohere to this perfect society, they would be punished severely.

Zeus ordered a creation to challenge man to obey the rules of superiority and More created his own little Utopia. The two collide in what I would like to baptize as Pandora’s Neocracy. And I have some thoughts on this issue as I am focusing my research on what may well be a new pithos; the mobile phone.

I am sorry my introduction took a while but there is a reason. ‘Pandora’s Neocracy’ is my endeavor that will, hopefully, lead into the caverns of how, what and why people do with mobile phones in the context of crossmedia. I regard the cell phone as pithos. It is more than a communication tool. It is Pandora’s box, most likely leading us away from traditional social patterns and bringing us new ‘living-togethers’; neocracies. Hence Pandora’s Neocracy. Subtitle: understanding how people use mobile phones and crossmedia to reinvent their social environment. To be continued.

Source (refference in italic) Verdenius, Willem Jacob, A Commentary on Hesiod Works and Days vv 1-382 (Leiden: E.J. Brill, 1985). ISBN 9004074651.

Written by Kees Winkel

July 28, 2010 at 12:21

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A mobile hoax and a minor

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Originally posted at www.crossmedialab.nl on 28 October 2009.

I came upon a nice picture of a layar (that’s not a mistake. It is the commercial name of virtual layers on mobile phone applications) on a mobile phone. We see Keizersgracht in Amsterdam on a nice autumn day through a VodaFone branded cell phone. We can look through the phone and the apparent Funda site, the Dutch real estate site. Intriguing. In the same image, we read information regarding a house at Prins Hendrikkade, costing about 349,000 Euro. As an example of what’s coming up, I’d say it is a great picture. From a reality point of view, I tend to say that this mash-up is a hoax. The picture we see is indeed Keizersgracht. The bridge you may spot at the end of the canal is Leidsegracht. It is where I walk the dog twice a day. The shot is taken at the bridge of Leidsestraat. Prins Hendrikkade is by no means even close to this point. I know because I live just behind the left-side houses. And, a propos, there’s no way one might acquire a flat for that price in the Prins Hendrikkade area (which happens to be near Amsterdam Central Station and Nemo. But, who cares. VodaFone has made its point.

Of course, layers like the one in the mock up are gaining territory as we speak. So, what is the relevance of talking about these innovations in mobility? Well, I am delighted to say that I have been working on the concept of a minor. Not just me of course but I have written the concept based on brainstorms with some colleagues. Boudewijn Dominicus, our former educational manager, instigated the whole idea. Clever thinking, Boudewijn! So, hopefully, we are on the road with this educational innovation September 2010 (in terms of higher eduction, that’s fast).

The minor is called Mobile Business Design. There is an addition: ‘in a crossmedial context’. That’s obvious to us but may not necessarily be to outsiders. There is a lot happening on the mobile front. It is not just about layers (layers). It is more about people using their phone to do other things than what they have done so far. I on’t really know where this is heading to but it sure feels exciting. So, we are planning a couple of things that will improve our professional education in crossmedia and digital communication with knowledge about mobility and the (assumed) cross-overs with other media.

The first thing we plan is what we call an Encounter. We hope to be able to cooperate with esteemed players in the field of mobility and creative industry (we have not asked these players so I’m afraid I can’t mention their names at this stage. Sorry). During this Encounter, a half-day brainstorm session, we will deepen issues that deal with the near future of development of mobility, what the industry requires as mobile and crossmedia competencies the next couple of years and how our faculty and research group can anticipate on this.
The next thing is that we refine the concept of the minor Mobile Business Design which has been sent to the Hogeschool’s auditors. What will happen after this, I really have no clue at the moment but for me personally, I’m happy to say that it would be a jewel to my crown.

I haven’t talked about the relationship of mobility and crossmedia yet. I recon it is obvious. Maybe, part of the invitation text for the Encounter may help: “buzz developments succeed each other faster than warp speed. And turbulence rages on. Trends abide as unthought-of heirs of a recent history. Will Twitter stay or are we already in for a new social medium that will enable us to tell the world where we are, what we are, who we are and what we do? Or will the next big thing be something completely different? Something that will facilitate us to be anywhere and nowhere at the same time: “beam me up Scotty”? And looking at all these developments, how can we anticipate?”

Hoaxy mash-ups or not, we are all very sure that we stand at the mere beginning of new exciting developments in tooling our human communication. And I am happy to be able to architecture these accretions into our professional education.

Written by Kees Winkel

July 28, 2010 at 11:56

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6 months of research have led to a list of mentalities

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Niniane Veldhoen and Matthijs Rotte have finished their research on mentalities. That is, they have delivered their paper before the deadline (Friday, 13 June 2008, 17.00). In believe that 6 months of research have led to a list of mentalities which is a very useful tool for further research. Niniane and Matthijs are among the first to graduate in the readership.

Nininane and Matthijs’s theme is ‘A matter of mentality’ and I am proud to say that the two have done a remarkable job. All that is left for them at this moment is undergo their ‘defense session’, as we call it at the faculty. On July 4th, they will have to defend their writings. An ‘assessor’ will ask them difficult questions after they have presented their case.

I have agreed with Niniane and Matthijs that I will not publish the list – and include an analysis and give some remarks – until they have done their defense (it could influence the assessor as my judgment over the work high that I am very happy).

One thing I can publish here is Nininane and Matthijs’s improvement of the IMAB model. There has been discussion about it with Harry van Vliet questioning whether the current model is depicting a linear system. The outcome of this discussion is that the parts of the system are valid but most certainly not linear; The individual parts – Identity, Mentality, Attitude and Behavior influence each other.

I wish Niniane and Matthijs good luck on the 4th of July and hope to do a lot more work with them.

Written by Kees Winkel

June 14, 2008 at 14:25

GRATIS. A taxonomy of the ‘FREECONOMY’.

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Scanning my way through the march issue of Wired magazine, I came across an article called ‘Free. Why $0,00 is the future of business’ by Chris Anderson, editor in chief and esteemed author of ‘The Long Tail’. Somewhere in 2009, Chris will publish his next book ‘Free’ and already I can’t wait for it to read it. Chris has a remarkable talent for unveiling and connotating latent and lingering economical issues. I recommend reading the article for those who study cross media as I believe that earning logics and cross media walk side by side.

So, what’s the crux of Chris’ new observations? Well, roughly Anderson distinguishes a taxonomy of the ‘freeconomy’ with six entities; freemium, advertising, cross-subsidies, zero marginal costs, labor exchange and gift economy. This line up is easily explained.

Freemium is one of the most common earning logics online. Anderson refers to the 1% rule in which one percent of the users of a site or service, pay for the other 99%. Just think of all the premium offers like FlickR or, in the Netherlands, Hyves. You may want to pay for extra services but basically, the service is free of charge. Anderson states that this logics look pretty much like the tool of sampling but at the same time there is a difference. This is that the freemium is about a digital full service and sampling (perfume, candy bars) are miniature products. We can use FlickR forever.

Advertising is nothing new. However, today we distinguish different logics in advertising. Not anymore does the advertiser need to pay for a space in a medium. Now advertisers pay per action (pay per page view, pay per click, pay per transaction; affiliate marketing). And further on in time, paid inclusion in search results, paid listing, pay per lead, pay per post (product placement) and pay per connection. These tools try to infiltrate in social media and social networks.

Cross-subsidies is an old marketing trick. You give away something for free but only if you buy something else. Think of getting a free ticket to a movie if you buy a big bag of popcorn. Ryanair, another example Anderson mentions, offers flights from London to Barcelona for $20. The costs are $70. How do they do it? The answer is simple; Ryanair charges for everything else (catering, credit card handling fee, priority boarding, advertising exposure per flight hour and subsidies from more expensive flights. Smart thinking. People obviously believe that they only pay those $20 and spoof of the other $50.

Zero marginal costs is the earning logics that deals with stuff like P2P. The music industry will never have control of its output anymore, no matter what legal regulations it pushes on consumers. Music, like any other type of digital content can be distributed for neglectable costs. This type of industry will just have to find new earning logics. A couple of years ago, I met John Perry Barlow, one of the then internet gurus and former songwriter of The Grateful Dead. He told a story about illegal recordings of the cult band. Kids would record the concerts. Of course, the quality was awful. The record label wanted nothing of the sort and intensified security at the gates of the concert halls. The outcome was that the concerts were running empty. Then the band decided that recording was allowed. The results were spectacular. More people came to the concerts and more records were sold. I guess Grateful Dead were one of the first bands to recognize that their earning logics were based on something else than the dictatorship of the labels.

Labor exchange is about value creation of services. You, as a user, create value to the owners of a certain site (Anderson talks about bots and porn but also about Google’s free directory service 411. The value created is either (or) improving the service itself or creating information that can be useful somewhere else. So, if you are into free porn, be sure to know that your data are used (maybe to spam you with doubtful Viagra offers).

Gift economy is Anderson’s sixth entity in his taxonomy. Anderson talks about altruism and that is correct. There has always been altruism, regardless of what level of capitalism we have currently. Sharing was the magic word that we believed in when WWW (and even before) was first unveiled. And still we cannot comprehend the value creation of this tool, let alone measure it. Perhaps our research group should dig into this (taking Erik Hekman’s efforts to determine parameters for value creation into consideration, I guess we are already doing it).

Professor Michael Rappa at MIT has listed business models on the web. His comprehensive list shows similarity with Anderson’s taxonomy. His list consists of

·         Brokerage

·         Advertising

·         Infomediary

·         Merchant

·         Manufacturer (direct)

·         Affiliate

·         Community

·         Subscription

·         Utility

I strongly recommend the reader to have a look and start converging the ideas of Anderson and Rappa. Of course Anderson talks about free – gratis – services and products a consumer can obtain through digital media. Some of Anderson’s earning logics are consumer driven (empowerment, permissive marketing; pull) and Rappa’s conclusions are more producer driven. Let’s see if we can observe even more earning logics currently not unveiled yet.





Ben is back

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If you have lived in The Netherlands for more than five years, you might be acquainted with the brand called ‘Ben’. Five years ago, this mobile operator was a strong consumer brand as a fighter operator, focusing on young people. To many, the campaigns are still known. Kesselskramer, the creative communication agency, did the black and white (with light blue as the only support color). Ben means ‘to be’ in Dutch. It is also a name. This brand name really was bull’s eye as it proved to be extremely campaignable. I was sort of sad that it disappeared – I was one of Ben’s dedicated followers – but did not think too much of it as I was living in Finland and using the local operator Kolumbus at the time.Now, for the audiences, Ben is back. And guess what, same campaign, same colors, same magic, provided by KesselsKramer.

Ben’s business concept has changed since then. Now you can only get prepaid subscriptions through their web site and it’s only prepaid. Ben targets everyone who is basically only interested in using the cell phone as a phone, so only verbal communication and SMS. Interesting. Anyway. Ben’s campaign is fantastic and quite crossmedial. Check it out at Ben’s site and click ‘Ben benieuwd’.

Written by Kees Winkel

March 7, 2008 at 16:07

Research Group Crossmedia Contents now officially in business

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Last Thursday, Dr. Harry van Vliet, lector with the Research Group Crossmedia Content of our faculty was inaugurated and gave his ‘public lesson’ (maiden speech) ‘Idola of the Crossmedia’. Finally, our research group is now official and, along with my colleague research fellows, I congratulate Harry with his appointment. Here is a brief excerpt of his speech. 

The possibilities to consume information have expanded considerably over the last few years. The Internet and mobile phones are the vanvlietpenn.jpgbest examples. More and more, different media are used next to each other. The same television show can be seen on television, via the Internet and on your cell phone. This phenomenon we call crossmedia. The Research Group’s assignment is to put into practice new insights in the field of crossmedia. It is a broad field mainly because digitization has a fundamental impact in many sectors. The research group – as part of the Lecturate (readership) of crossmedia – chooses four fields of coverage: media, cultural heritage, e-learning and marketing. Besides this, there are three more generic questions that are leading in our research: the question of the added value of crossmedia, the question of user experience in crossmedia and the question of crossmedia literacy. The research group conducts research on the tangent place of the application areas and the generic research questions with a direct line to education. 

If you are interested in the research group, please visit http://www.crossmedialab.nl/. We’d appreciate your input (sit on-line since 10 January 2008. (picture by Jan Willem Groen)

Written by Kees Winkel

January 12, 2008 at 11:38

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