miércoles, 12 de diciembre de 2007

Ten Startup Rules

Thanks Loic Le Meur,

(The idea does not count only execution matters: 10 rules to launch a startup today)

1- do not wait for a revolutionary idea, the idea of your life will never happen, just focus on a simple exciting empty space you see and execute as fast as possible
2- share your idea as much as possible, the more you share, the more you get advice and the more you learn. Meet and talk to your competitors.
3- build a community around you through blogging and social software
4- listen to your community, answer questions and build your product with their feedback, involve bloggers as early as possible and get their feedback, if negative, adapt your product permanently
5- gather a great team with a very different skill set than yours, look for people who are better than you without being afraid of it
6- be the first to recognize a problem or a mistake you have made. Never hide it behind the carpet. Address the issue in public, learn and correct it.
7- do not spend time on market research, but launch as early as possible in alpha or beta versions. Keep improving the product in the open.
8- do not focus on a large spreadsheet business plan, you are so sure it is not going to happen anyway
9- do not plan huge marketing, growing with your community loving the product is much more powerful
10- do not focus on getting rich or selling your company, focus on your users, money is a consequence of success, can't be a goal

lunes, 10 de diciembre de 2007

Leaving Basecamp

lunes, 19 de noviembre de 2007

Changing towards a new conscious capitalism

In holometabolism, the larvae differ markedly from the adults. Insects which undergo holometabolism pass through a larval stage, then enter an inactive state called pupa, or chrysalis, and finally emerge as adults.

Holometabolism is also known as "complete" and "complex" metamorphosis. Whilst inside the pupa, the insect will excrete digestive juices, to destroy much of the larva's body, leaving a few cells intact. The remaining cells will begin the growth of the adult, using the nutrients from the broken down larva. This process of cell death is called histolysis, and cell regrowth histogenesis.

Cell death plays a considerable role during physiological processes of multicellular organisms, particularly during embryogenesis and metamorphosis.

domingo, 11 de noviembre de 2007

domingo, 7 de octubre de 2007

Eye Opener

This is a preview from "Call of Life: Facing the Mass Extinction," a feature documentary now in production.

The following content is from the site www.speciesalliance.org/, and aims to bring to light the fears many scientists have that human development at our current pace may lead to the extinction of possibly half of the worlds total species relatively soon.

The loss of biodiversity on earth has become so acute that scientists are now calling it a "mass extinction event." The crisis has many causes, all of which are related to human activity. Through interviews with eminent biologists, psychologists, anthropologists, historians, and many others, the film not only presents the facts of the shocking decline, it also explores the ways in which culture and psychology have conspired to determine our collective and individual response to this situation, and how the latest insights into natural systems could help us turn back the tide.

The film weaves biology, psychology, and cultural history into a clear and accessible story of our changing world. The audience is taken into the depths of the human psyche, through the toughest problems of our times and into the cutting edge of what nature has to teach us. The mass extinction is quite possibly the greatest threat that humanity has ever faced. Those of us alive today have been given a choice—one last opportunity to save the diversity of our planet. The decisions we make or fail to make in the next few years will affect the habitability of earth for millennia to come. This is the greatest adventure of all time—with the future of life itself in the balance.

domingo, 19 de agosto de 2007

Reviewing Enterprise 2.0

jueves, 9 de agosto de 2007

What is Web 3.0

Google’s Eric Schmidt definition:

jueves, 28 de junio de 2007

domingo, 10 de junio de 2007


Poblado de EL CUCO, el Salvador, Playa las Flores. 5:30 am

Surfing the Web & the Waves.

viernes, 1 de junio de 2007

Steve Jobs Speech on 1984.

lunes, 21 de mayo de 2007

Howard Rheingold: Where the Use of WEB 2.0 is Taking Us

Intyeresting interview of HowardRheingold on where the technology is taking us.

Howard Rheingold, chronicler of how technology changes the way we live, work and play, prognosticates how business leaders and organizations will change to adapt to the new technological realities. He argues that leaders will need to have an interdisciplinary understanding of issues, look to the youth in the company for innovation and believe that it is okay to fail. “The organization wall will need to become a permeable membrane" and be "ambidextrous" to stay competitive.

miércoles, 16 de mayo de 2007

David Blood on Sustainability

Sustainability investing is the explicit recognition that social, economic, environmental, and ethical factors directly affect business strategy—for example, how companies attract and retain employees, how they manage the risks and create opportunities from climate change, a company’s culture, corporate-governance standards, stakeholder-engagement strategies, philanthropy, reputation, and brand management. These factors are particularly important today given the widening of societal expectations of corporate responsibility.

David Blood, Co-CEO and CEO of Goldman Sachs Asset Management (1999–2003)

For further data ,watch video of discussion between, David Blood, John Elkington, and Al Gore:

domingo, 13 de mayo de 2007

miércoles, 9 de mayo de 2007

Perspectives on Triple Bottom line

20 years as managing director in Investment banking and Private equity funds, looking solely for economic value creation, for a 35% IRR for investors seems difficult to U-turn. But surprisingly, once you pass the intangible threshold (and you find it its not only possible, but the business of this century, which is in the midts of disruptive transformations, that occur faster that we can comprehend) you understand that its not a swerve that occurs but a simple changing of lanes.

Those years of Bulls and Bear... suspenders...

The signals are clear. The largest retailers of the US are adopting sustainable practices; Hundreds of consumers go through Wal Mart and Home Depot every week and receive a message.
(To those that claim greenwashing, I ask, "does it matter"?)
We Media is grouping conscientious consumers in thousands of participating communities; Myspace’s population has reached that of the ten largest countries of the world.

To the point….
My friend Carlos P. made a magnificent comparison today, he compared it to the sunset.
"Do you know", he said, "that between the actual sunset and what we see, there is an eight-minute delay"?
"If the sun had been turned off, we would only realize eight minutes after."

It's a question of time.

lunes, 7 de mayo de 2007

Rupert Murdoch: Oportunities of New Media

Companies that take advantage of this new meaning of network and adapt to the expectations of the networked consumer can look forward to a new golden age of media. Far be it from me to suggest that either I or my company have all the answers. No one does. But the future of media is a future of relentless experimentation and innovation, accelerating change, and--for those who embrace the new ways in which consumers are connecting with each other--enormous potential.
Rupert Murdoch. via Forbes

miércoles, 2 de mayo de 2007

The Power of the Web 3.0 by Paul Hawken

Moore’s Law, which predicts that processing power will double in power and halve in price every 18 months, is meeting Metcalfe’s Law, which states that the usefulness of a network grows exponentially with arithmetic increases in numbers of users. These laws enable big corporations just as they do small NGOs, but the latter gain greater advantage because these new technologies amplify smallness more effectively than largeness. Large organizations don’t need networks; small ones thrive on them. Webs are complex systems of interconnected elements that link individual actions to larger grids of knowledge and movement. Web sites link to other sites with more links to other sites ad infinitum, creating a critical, fluid mass of information that evolves and grows as needed—very much like the response of our immune systems. At the heart of all of this is not technology but relationships, tens of millions of people working toward restoration and social justice.

From the book Blessed Unrest: How the Largest Movement in the World Came Into Being and Why No One Saw It Coming (Viking). Paul Hawken is the head of the Natural Capital Institute, and author of The Ecology of Commerce, Natural Capitalism (with Amory Lovins) and other books.
taken from the article: The instinct to save the planet
, appeared in Ode issue: 43

jueves, 26 de abril de 2007

California. No Drive Day. April 29th

"California No Drive Day on April 29, 2007. Give yourself and the planet a breather -- be incredibly creative in how you get somewhere that day or be incredibly lazy and go nowhere."

Please, if you live in California, don't drive on April 29, 2007.
That's a Sunday. Take a rest.
Nora Gallagher
Patagonia Environmental Editor

miércoles, 18 de abril de 2007

Lesson six: Steve Jobs Speech at Stanford

Find what you love.
Keep Looking and Don't settle.
Stay Hungry Stay Foolish.

martes, 17 de abril de 2007

jueves, 12 de abril de 2007

Lesson five: Our potential to change

Man has not one and the same life. He has many lives, placed end to end, and that is the cause of his misery.

lunes, 2 de abril de 2007

Does connection create friendship?

miércoles, 28 de marzo de 2007

John Mackey: On Entrepreneurs with transcendent purposes

“Entrepreneurs create their businesses for a diversity of reasons. However, I believe that most of the greatest companies in the world also have great purposes which were discovered and/or created by their original founders and which still remain at the core of their business models. Having a deeper, more transcendent purpose is highly energizing for all of the various interdependent stakeholders, including the customers, employees, investors, suppliers, and the larger communities in which the business participates. While these deeper, more transcendent purposes have unique expressions at each business they also can be grouped into certain well known and timeless categories. Philosophy dates back to Plato; the timeless ideals of “The Good”, “The True”, and “The Beautiful” that humanity has been seeking to create, discover, and express for thousands of years. If we add the ideal of “The Heroic” to the above three we have the framework of higher ideals which most great businesses seek to express in some form or fashion.”

Source: Conscious Capitalism: Creating a New Paradigm for Business

sábado, 24 de marzo de 2007

The revolution really has started: More on Patagonia and Wal Mart

"The revolution really has started," says Yvone Chouniard with a slow, curling and just slightly subversive smile. "I'm blown away by Wal-Mart. If Wal-Mart does one-tenth of what they say they're going to do, it will be incredible. And hopefully America will get a government that we need rather than one we deserve, that will put pressure on business to clean up its act. But the most powerful pressure will come from the consumer. Oh, my God, it's going to be really powerful."

As Chouinard sees it, there's only one downside to this good news: It's probably too late. "There's a race between running out of water, topsoil or petroleum. I don't know what's going to be first. Or maybe it will all happen at once."

Read the Fortune article.

Visit Patagonia Blog

domingo, 18 de marzo de 2007

Wal Mart and Sustainability 360: Greenwashing or true change?

Wal-Mart’s CEO launched “Sustainability 360,” an initiative that involves working with suppliers to reduce packaging by 5% by 2013 – an effort that will be equal to removing 213,000 trucks from the road, and saving approximately 324,000 tons of coal and 67 million gallons of diesel fuel per year.
Wal-Mart's six path strategy focuses on its own environmental footprint and that of its 60,000 suppliers. It has big ambitions to cut the waste sent to landfill, build more energy efficient stores and take "a hard look at what is on our shelves".
The question is: are these thousands of suppliers genuinely trying to understand what sustainability really is? Or are they only changing their practice just enough so as to maintain Wal Mart as a client?
If Wal Mart is strict enough in its policy, and keeps setting higher sustainability standards, does it really matter if suppliers only go after Wal Mart business or if they truly embrace the sustainability phylosophy?
I believe one leads to the other, many companies like Patagonia,
Interface, Natura, American Apparel have found the benefits of sustainable Business practices. Currently, Wal Mart and its suppliers are on the way to discovering this.

Paul Hawken, The author of the Ecology of Commerce, defined in a recent interview that "Sustainability comes when the light bulb goes on and you start to see that we are all involved, that everything is interconnected that your actions affect others", and when we do see this, you longer ask, or discuss, if it is right or wrong, you look for a solution.

100 million customers visit Wal Mart every week, many light bulbs should go on in their stores.

Yvon Chouinard lists Patagonia's values, and with them five steps to action> They are I believe, the five best actions to reach sustainability.

Chouinard's five steps.
read the whole essay

STEP 1: Lead an examined life. Most of the environmental damage human’s cause is a result of ignorance.
STEP 2: Clean up your act. Once you learn the environmental costs, try to reduce them. And when you can reduce them, you must.
STEP 3: Do your penance. No matter how diligent a corporation, it causes waste and pollution.
STEP 4: Support civil democracy. It’s obvious that governments and corporations hold a lot of power, but so do small groups of people who care passionately about an issue and press their cause.

STEP 5: Influence other companies. If you undertake the other steps, this one is a natural. The company that discovers new ways to be more environmentally responsible has an obligation to spread the word to others – to share the knowledge of what can be done.

At this moment Wal Mart is leading the influence movement on other companies,
60,000 of them!.

viernes, 16 de marzo de 2007

Sustainability vs Survivability

I have just discovered a new term in Yvon Chouniard's book "Let my people go surfing".
A concept I had never seen applied before, at least for the human race.


To those that have come to understand the philosophy of sustainability, our greatest fear is that this term, could evolve into a more complex and irreversible situation, much beyond unsustainability.
This more "complex situation" has just been presented to me as: Survivability.

Lesson four: By Paul Hawken.

"If everyone thinks you have a good idea, you're too late"

jueves, 15 de marzo de 2007

Chapter Eight: Mass collaboration is "framing" Corporate responsibility.

Where we’re heading

These three forces –the revolution of the social sector, sustainable development and the participatory media– converge in the dawning of the 21st century to generate a radical change in the way we communicate, do business, and cooperate with the rest of mankind. Each of these currents in turn drives the growth of the others.

The “tipping point”, that moment in which something that is unique will become commonplace, is very near. The signs are out there for all of us to see.

Ordinary people’s participation in the media cannot be turned back. While YouTube, Current TV, and AOL are supplying them with simple publication and edition tools (for blogs, photos, and videos), mainstream sites like those of BBC and CNN are demanding contents created by this rising and powerful army of citizen journalists.

From participatory journalism to interactive advertising

People who increasingly participate in the communications media question and reject unidirectional advertising. And the phenomenon is on the rise. The new individual become global citizen participates and browses the Net as part of his daily activities. He connects when and how he likes. He demands a new relationship with companies and the manner in which the latter promote the sales of their products. Accustomed to conversation (permalink), this individual asks to engage in dialog with companies and expects to be heard by them.

Companies that progressively adopt sustainability practices will be the ones able to engage into and sustain an authentic dialog with their clients. Those that have grasped the fact that, in order to stay successful, they must change their way of extracting raw materials and producing – and reduce their impact on both the environment and humans.

There are myriad consumers looking for corporate information on the Web, talking among themselves about the products they consume and the history behind such products, and reading company blogs. The post on Kryptonite the padlock manufacturer is one of many proofs of the existence of a watchdog community operating via the Internet. They observe, share information, denounce and reward the companies they identify with.

Conscious consumers are creating communities where they review the impact of corporate behaviour (check dotherightthing.com)

The power of networks

The new participatory media is making an unprecedented impact on the social sector as well. Online communities are the natural ecosystem in which change-makers multiply. The tools for this are out there and within everyone’s reach. Thanks to the use of available technologies, every day there arise more people who –like Rodrigo Baggio and Iqbal Quadir– create their own networks for social transformation.

As Bill Drayton said in words quoted above, “if we multiply the number of change-makers from 1% to 20% in the next fifteen years, that will be the most radical change ever witnessed since the agricultural revolution.” The participatory media will have achieved that – and more.

25% of Internet users participate in online communities. Glocalization ensures that, after conversing for hours with people from all over the world who share his interests, the new individual goes out to the street and starts building a commitment towards his neighbors, school, club, and community.

The new Internet, the Web 2.0 (blogs, vlogs, permalink, free software), is creating a space for conversation and universal community. Wikipedia and Ohmy, for their part, have shown that when the community claims ownership of the media, there grows a bond of trust that gives rise to a universal intelligence – where joint striving for the common good and collective building eradicate bad practices.

Our future lies in the weaving of virtual networks, held together by common values and issues. Social participation and sustainability are clearly two dimensions deeply related to awareness, responsibility, and growing commitment. And, faster than we can even begin to envision, the world is heading in that direction.

The media is here and the truth is out there. This conversation has only just begun.

lunes, 12 de marzo de 2007

On Corporate Responsibility for Planet Earth

On Corporate Responsibility for Planet Earth

by Yvon Chouinard
Read the whole essay

As an alpinist who set out to make gear for my friends and never thought of myself as a “businessman” until long after I became one, I’ve wrestled the demons of corporate responsibility for some time. Who are businesses really responsible to? Their shareholders? Their customers? Their employees? None of the above, I have finally come to believe. Fundamentally, businesses are responsible to their resource base. Without a healthy planet there are no shareholders, no customers, no employees. As the conservationist David Brower liked to say, “There is no business to be done on a dead planet.”

But what does behaving responsibly to the environment mean? It took me nearly 25 years in business to learn how to ask that question. It has taken another 15 years of trial and error to uncover the process that Patagonia – or any environmentally minded company – has to go through in pursuit of answers. I think I know how to break that process down to five steps. These steps apply to individuals as well as to companies who want to reduce the harm they do and make a difference.

STEP 1: Lead an examined life.
STEP 2: Clean up your act.
STEP 3: Do your penance.
STEP 4: Support civil democracy.
STEP 5: Influence other companies.


In the end, Patagonia will never be completely socially responsible, nor at any time soon be able to make a totally sustainable (“cradle-to-cradle” recyclable) product. We have a long way to go and we don’t have a map – but we do have a way to read the terrain and to take the next step, and then the next.

SlideShare: Educational Materials on Steroids.

domingo, 11 de marzo de 2007

sábado, 10 de marzo de 2007

Patagonia's Environmental Essays: Combining Marketing of products with values

The Patagonia Catalog might be the best example of creating environmental awareness while marketing products.

Patagonia's 2006-2007 campaign is devoted to de Ocean, In the catalogs, retail stores and on the Web site, they analyze the” vitality of human life and the marine environment".

The recent spring catalog has two very good stories about the human impact on the ocean's degradation.

This is an excerpt of The eye of the Marlin by Dick Russell.

Not so long ago, the ocean's bounty of seafood was believed limitless. Today, the United Nations reports that 75 percent of the world's fish populations are being overfished. Over 3.5 million fishing vessels scour our oceans, utilizing high-tech gear. "Factory" trawlers ensnare 120,000 pounds of fish in a single scoop of the net. Their impact on the seafloor is like fishing with a bulldozer that tears through fragile coral reefs.

Vessels that set 100,000 miles of longlines – holding nearly 5 million hooks – kill over 90 percent of the billfish. Marlin are considered "bycatch" and thrown back dead into the ocean. Both white and blue marlin will soon be on the endangered species list. The majestic bluefin tuna is on the verge of extinction in the western Atlantic, the victim of seines, harpoons and traps. An estimated thousand dolphins and porpoises a day drown in tuna nets.

Read the whole story.

Want to get involved? Visit OCEANA

See All Patagonia's Environmental Essays

viernes, 9 de marzo de 2007

Muhammad Yunnus: Beyond Grameen Bank

Yunus affirms business schools should start turning out social-business MBAs trained in creating social returns: "People say, 'Don't be stupid.' I say there are a lot of stupid people like me. I don't want to make money. Lots of young people don't want to make money, because their mother, their father made so much money. They don't know what to do with their lives. There are many such kids in the U.S. They don't have any challenge left. Give them the challenge: Fix the world. Create a social business enterprise."

"The new wave in business is, forget corporate social responsibility and philanthropy - how do you integrate this into your core business?" says Yunus.

"The idea Danone has of creating a social dividend for shareholders - that's cutting-edge. No one else has come up with this interesting a model. It supports your brand, returns your capital, you're not going to lose money and you give your shareholders a vision of doing something good." he says.

In the fall of 2005, Yunus invited Danone CEO Franck Riboud to come to Bangladesh and build his first social business enterprise. Riboud listened, then agreed. The yogurt Danone would make would be fortified to help curb malnutrition and priced (at 7 cents a cup) to be affordable. All revenue from the joint venture with Grameen would be reinvested, with Danone (Charts) taking out only its initial cost of capital, about $500,000, after three years.

"I am destroying the culture, yes," Yunus says, beaming mischievously at the thought. "Culture is a dynamic thing. If you stay with the same old thing over and over, you don't get anywhere."

The same applies to Yunus's concept of microcredit. Sticking with the same old idea over and over only gets you so far. To really get somewhere, Yunus says ... well, there's this Big New Idea.

Read the Whole story at CNN.

Wal Mart and Unilever. Responible production - distribution.

In late 2005, Unilever management sat with Wal Mart’s CEO, Lee Scott, to convince him that they could save, per year, 16 million liters of water, 113.500 liters of diesel, six million kilos of plastic and 630 thousand square meters of carton . The product, the All Small and Mighty, with sales over $100 million, became Wal Mart 's Value Producing Item and Unilever’s most successful launched product of 2006.

miércoles, 7 de marzo de 2007

Saving Africa: New media, Branding, Blogging or Second Life?

Saving Africa has become a worldwide crusade:
Google shows 73,900,000 Results / options for save africa. in (0.11 seconds)
but amazingly there is only One Sponsored Link.

The world is screaming for awareness on Africa’s problems, and hopefully, we will soon demand solutions.

It seems as if we are reaching a moment of understanding, where the problems of Africa are no longer theirs, but ours, of all of us, as we realize that we are all members of a small global community called planet earth.

Will we produce solutions? Or we will just keep building an intolerable consciousness on the subject.
Bill Drayton says: Understanding the problem is halfway to the solution.

But People need to be responsibly informed in order to understand.
Apparently New Media is coming up with some interesting ways of doing so.
Here are someexamples:
Discussion in the blogosphere: Technorati throughs 62,405 Blogs discussing save africa, this is one of them
There is version of Camp Darfur in Second Life for anybody wanting to have a virtual experience
of walking through a ghosttown of a refugee camp, victimized by years of torture and genocide.
Second Life also offers a live discussion with Mia Farrow on the problems of Darfur

and the assortment of videos in YouTube on the matter:

Which brings us to Bono and the critisizim he is receiving for the outcome of Product Red campaign: They spent 100 Million dollars on marketing people the idea of consuming RED products but the commercial results, for those waiting for this money in Africa, were a disaster, since they only raised 18 million dollars.

But if conciousness is one of the necessary steps to a solution, Bono’s actions are having a positive impact: He constantly brings the Africa HIV problem to the head lines. People are listening. They are reacting. Maybe the first step to resolve this problem is wearing a RED distinctive product. Maybe this is the only way Bono can contribute to this cause.
But which is yours?
Get informed

sábado, 3 de marzo de 2007

EPIC: Stile and consumption meet Sustainability

Click for video

What fuels this new Movement?

  • Growing emphasis on transparency throughout the international business world.
  • Mounting influence of ideas about corporate social responsibility.
  • Consumer demand for authenticity in commercial products.
  • Increasing global calls to eliminate poverty.
  • Rising pressure to protect nature.
  • More companies concerned about diminishing natural resources.
Source: Meindert Brouwer's forthcomming book Amazon Your business, via Ode.

martes, 27 de febrero de 2007

Eco consciousness in Patagonia thanks to Youtube

The Morenito lake

Last summer the practice water skiing on some Patagonian lakes suddenly went out of control. A significant increase of tourism, the economic reactivation combined with state deflated gas prices summoned, on any given sunny day, dozens of outboard motor boat fanatics.
Powerboats took a preference to the wind-shielded, still waters of the Morenito.

The ecosystem was deeply impacted as the natural habitat of black-necked swans and rainbow trout gave way to oily and raucous sketches of risky crisscrossing wave trails.
While authorities were well aware of the situation they acted obliviously to the many letters of eco conscious neighbors, kayakers and fishermen.

The impact of Cybermedia.
YouTube changed everything; all I had to do was to post this short video describing a normal summer day.

Suddenly the reality was there, accessible to anybody anytime. Over a thousand visits to Youtube echoed the mails that people were interchanging on the matter. In no time, the video link was reaching the local authorities. Not just another complaint letter to be filed in a drawer.
Two months after the video was posted the practice of waterski on the Moreno lake was banned altogether.

The video.

The Municipality resolution.

A letter sent by a neighbor describing some of this summer events.

Hi Ernesto,

Just wanted to thank you for all you have done to recover the tranquility of our Morenito!

Your campaign was successful; there was no skiing in the lake.

Things were rather funny: the day after you left (and during my siesta...) a group of 4 boats arrived jointly, took as base Scioli's place and started skiing.
One boat even stopped at your floating sign and spray painted it.

Well, some 5-6 kayaks showed up trying to stop them. I jointed, with Marina, in our gomon - camera and Prefectura's resolution in hand.
We had some very unpleasant discussions with the Sioli's friends and a tough (but more or less reasonable) conversation with this Repetto guy.
They finally left.

Susana Jimenez organized for the next day a visit of Prefectura. They showed up by boat and car. Whilst the boat patrolled the area, Susana visited with the Prefecto
Some neighbors. Since than Prefectura comes once a week.

The other day, apparently a newcomer, started skiing and immediately an armada of floating devices covered the lake. We saw these people never again.

Doubtless all neighbors appreciate the new situation, it is wonderful to see the lake with sometimes more than 25 windsurfer, rowing boats, canoes etc, plus people swimming without fear.

Susana than also invested a bottle of nail polisher to clean up your sign.

When we left it was common knowledge in Llao Llao that the Morenito was off-limit for skiing, actually plenty of outside kayaks come to visit.

Mission completed!

Regards to everybody


The sign painted by disagreen skiers.

Chapter seven: The Global Citizen, Sustainable Development Consciousness

“The medium, or process, of our time – electric technology is reshaping and restructuring patterns of social interdependence and every aspect of our personal life. Everything is changing: you, your family, your education, your neighborhood, your job, your government, your relation to the others. And they're changing dramatically".
Marshall McLuhan, communication theorist

A new individual is arising. For two years we have seen these people pass like a shadow, but we haven’t lost their trail. They are people who are conscious of their role in society and participate through the media. And the medium of our era is digital technology.

The new individual is a global citizen who is connected to the world and online. Not surfing but googling. These people don’t passively receive information, but participate – mistrust traditional media, and challenge them.

“Besides breathing, what else do you do more than 3,000 times a day? What you do, or rather what you get done to you, is receive thousands of messages aimed at making you buy something”. Paul Hawken, author of The Ecology of Commerce

The new individual no longer watches a 30-minute news program or spends hours in front of the paper, but rather, on turning his personal computer on every morning (or entering a cybercafé), finds the news services he chose to subscribe to on the screen. He converses online and doesn’t want to be directed. He no longer writes to the paper’s “Readers’ Mail” page, but prefers the immediacy of Internet – and interacting to making speeches.

Signs: We are connected
• In Latin America, cell phones rapidly reached every social class and age group. Considered luxury goods or a working tool a few years ago, cell phones are now used by teenagers to send text messages (SMS) to their friends, by parents to know where their children are, by wives to know at what time their husbands will get home, and by those living in underprivileged neighborhoods, where telephone networks still haven’t arrived.
• Broadband connectivity is likewise reaching critical levels. Some access the new media via their laptop computers or iPods, and the majority of people do so at a cybercafé for less than 20 US cents an hour.
• 40,000 people participated in a cyber-activism campaign in Argentina. Encouraged by Greenpeace, they sent SMS from their cell phones so that Buenos Aires legislators would pass a “zero-garbage” law. It was a success.
• An amazing 500,000 million SMS are exchanged every year worldwide.

From consumer to selector
“By the time he or she finishes high school, an American teenager will have watched 350,000 commercial ads. The average adult watches 21,000 commercials a year. We are taught to identify car models rather than bird species, so much that we can identify a thousand brand logos but less than ten native trees. Besides breathing, what else do you do more than 3,000 times a day? What you do, or rather what you get done to you, is receive thousands of messages aimed at making you buy something,” remarked Paul Hawken in 1992, author, among other books, of The Ecology of Commerce.

The new individual, on the contrary, selects what he consumes, refusing to be overwhelmed and convinced by advertising to buy a certain product. Not accepting sales ads at face value, he wants to have things explained to him, wants to be engaged in dialog, to be heard – and is consequently more and more reluctant towards traditional advertising strategies.

The new individual does not reject consuming, but rather (since there was never so much information available regarding the history behind each product) makes, for the first time, purchase decisions based on companies’ ethical behavior. Pioneer brands such as American Apparel, Patagonia and Camper have made him used to reading labels, to learning which are the clean technologies and how his decisions can make a difference in issues of concern such as environment, labor and health. He is aware, and becomes a fan of trusted brands. He looks for authenticity and reacts strongly against deception and shallowness.

The new individual = The global citizen

Chilean students used SMS, MSN, and other Internet tools to paralyze all the schools in their country. With their students’ strike, they forced Michelle Bachelet’s government to promote a change in educational policies.

Local and global
According to the Pew Internet & American Life Project research entitled “Online Communities: Networks that nurture long-distance relationships and local ties”, some 45 million people who participate in online communities say that Internet has helped them connect with other persons or groups with shared interests, regardless of distance. Research also discovered that these virtual relationships are becoming offline interactions. “Internet also helps people increase their contacts with other people they already know and who live in their community,” the report concludes.

With regard to this, French-Canadian philosopher Hervé Fischer affirms that digital technologies offer more than one alternative to build a society that is more equitable and humanistic: “We have to go from the society of competitive loneliness to the society of shared responsibilities and solidarities. We have to create a ‘hyperhumanism’: a new social model based, like the digital hypertext, on links.”

That’s what the phenomenon is called. It refers to Internet’s aptitude for widening the social world of people who are physically far apart (global level) while at the same time connecting them in a deeper manner with the place they live in and their immediate surroundings (local level). It is thus that users start to gain awareness of problems afflicting their communities and to look for answers to those problems. They start wanting to cooperate, worrying about what happens on the block, at their schools, to their neighbors.

It’s just a few steps from this shared interest to the weaving of a web, a social and digital network. To thinking globally and acting locally.

The new individual:
• Creates.........................................Wikipedia
• Communicates ........................... RSS / Permalink

• Cooperates ..................................Glocalization

viernes, 23 de febrero de 2007

Chapter six: Sustainability, Triple bottom line, a new Corporate Consumer relationship

“I managed Interface as a looter, taking things that were not mine. Things that belong to every creature on Earth. At some point I realized: Oh my God! There will come a time when this will be illegal. A time when looting won’t be allowed. Some day, people like me will end up in jail”.
Ray Anderson, chairman and CEO, Interface

A recent survey carried out by The Synergos Institute in several countries shows that 95% of consumers believe that companies have a debt towards their employees and the community. It also indicates that 3 of every 10 English consumers either chose or boycotted brands, products, or companies for ethical reasons in the last 12 months.
It would indeed look as if we are converging, little by little, at the same manner of thinking. The same ethos. Sustainable development, a concept that leads us not to live beyond our possibilities –– not to burn down our house to keep ourselves warm, or cut the tree branch we are sitting on. A concept that leads us to attend to current needs without jeopardizing future generations’ possibilities, in the words of Swiss philanthropist and businessman Stephan Schmidheiny. Actually, this concept is sheer common sense: the one that drives us to close the faucet while we are brushing our teeth.
Because of these and other signs, pioneer brands are already working on integrating the sustainability of their positioning strategies and communicating it to their publics. They understand the imperious need to establish a new relationship with their consumers.

Signs: Model companies and responsible consumers
• Toyota Motor Co. created sedan Prius, the first low-cost mass-produced electric car. By this means it expects to reach 15% of worldwide sales of hybrids, which would entail beating General Motors as the planet’s greatest automobile manufacturer.
• The annual sales of Interface –one of the world’s largest carpet manufacturers– add up to about USD one million-million a year. Since the company started its sustainability initiatives, it has saved more than USD 70 million. For the year 2020, Interface has set itself the challenge of becoming the first sustainable industrial company on the planet.
• Brazilian cosmetics company Natura was, back in the 80s, one of the first in the world to incorporate the concept of “refill”, thus proving its concern for its products’ environmental impact. Today, holding 19% of the market, it is the leader of its sector in South America – a brand valued at 113% of annual sales, and having grown 32% in sales in 2 years.
• No less than 84% of consumers in Brazil would recommend products that assign a percentage of their sales to a social cause or a NGO.
• 40% of consumers in Chile have punished or are willing to punish irresponsible companies.
• In Argentina, 51% of consumers are willing to pay more for products from companies that show they are socially responsible.
• According to the World Bank, European consumers have refused to buy American genetically modified foods.
• On the other hand, the USA –under pressure from its consumers–forbade the importation of tuna fish from Mexico due to that country’s not having prevented the killing of dolphins while fishing.

Nike: Change of habits
The world’s great economic and media groups base their business model on their capacity to influence the needs, desires and lifestyles of their consumers. But what happens when consumers voluntarily change their habits? Market researches have already identified a new consumer that rewards socially and environmentally committed companies while punishing irresponsible ones. Consequently, in order to stay competitive, companies must adjust their business model and anticipate new demands. Some pioneer brands have already found an innovative way of communicating with this new client.
In the aftermath of the scandal caused by its use of sweatshops (as denounced in Naomi Klein’s book No Logo), Nike started manufacturing in a cleaner, more responsible manner. “We know from experience how much a brand can suffer when its practices are questioned,” say company presidents Mark Parker and Charlie Denson. The company launched the Nike Considered line of products, incorporating organic cotton. Furthermore, it changed the values reflected in its advertising campaigns. “I don’t play for prizes,” affirms Ronaldinho, Brazilian football’s star player, in one of the brand’s recent ads.

Kryptonite: Consumers to power
Many are the companies have implemented decisive transformations in their way of doing business. They have understood that, in this new environment, brands must bare their souls, mission, sense, and commitment to a world that both desires and needs to be sustainable. They have understood also that deception cannot be gotten away with and that, in this era, consumers simply cannot be ignored.
Kryptonite is a manufacturer of bicycle padlocks. One year ago, a user posted in a blog that their “high security” padlocks could be opened with a pen. The company tried to ignore this and discredit the comment. A few days later, there appeared on the Internet a video showing that the padlocks were truly “made of butter”. Stubbornly, Kryptonite issued a press release insisting that they were safe. Then, another few days later, the story appeared in the New York Times, making an approximate 5 million readers aware of the episode. Kryptonite finally announced that it would change all the padlocks at an estimated cost of USD 10 million.

“We want to be happy and content and not to exploit our employees. We are interested in music, hedonistic, and love sex.”
Dov Charney, founder, American Apparel

American Apparel: The business of doing things right
American Apparel is located in downtown Los Angeles, where all the cotton garments the company manufactures are cut and sewn. While a great part of the textile industry has opted for foreign labor plants –located mainly in those countries where labor force is much cheaper than in the USA– American Apparel intended from the very start to distance itself completely from the so-called “sweatshops”. The company treats its employees with dignity and respect, besides offering them salaries that are way higher than the average, medical benefits and paid holidays.

This strategy has paid off fairly well: today, American Apparel is considered to be among the ten most growing companies in the country within its sector. In the period spanning the years 2000-2004, its sales increased 900%, compared with the 12,9% growth of the garment industry in the USA. Competitors GAP and H&M reached 40% and 76% respectively. For Dov Charney, founder and owner since 1997, the success of this no-logo brand can be explained thus: “Our aim is to make clothes that people like, without employing slave labor. And it seems that people are liking them…”

The future is here
The following news, published towards the end of the year 2006, show that the world has already changed.

• On September 20th, the State of California filed huge claims against six large car manufacturing companies for their responsibility regarding global warming. General Motors, Toyota, Ford, Honda, Chrysler, and Nissan were sued for manufacturing millions of vehicles that release 289 million tons of carbon dioxide a year into the atmosphere.
• “This is not a hobby. We aren’t doing it to improve our reputation or to feel good,” said Gary Sheffer to ABC channel. Mr. Sheffer is Communications and Public Affairs Manager of General Electric, whose sales of environment-friendly products have grown 100% in 2005, reaching a total of USD 10,000 million.
• “We want to transform the world’s largest supermarket chain into the greenest one, and to transform our suppliers as well,” says Lee Scott, CEO of Wal-Mart, the greatest buyer of organic cotton on the planet.

Sustainable human development
It’s part of the business already. It’s not certain whether it was consumers, activists, or pioneering businesspeople that set it in motion – but, sometime while we were all discussing its signs, the change began.

Triple Bottom Line
This term refers to a company’s results, measured in economic, environmental, and social terms, as expressed in the corporate reports of sustainable development-committed companies. For the time being, these measurements are voluntary. 68% of Western European multinational corporations currently carry out this kind of measurement, while in the USA, even though the figure is lower at a current 41%, the increase is still dizzying. In every case, companies presenting this kind of analysis have realized, before the rest, that in the immediate future consumers will become more and more responsible – and will demand to know the economic, environmental, and social impact of the products they reward with purchase.

“An authentic brand has to decide what it will give from itself. It must answer itself difficult questions. Who are we? What is our mission? How do we want to contribute to the world? This is the greatest challenge brands must face today: to rediscover their inspiration. It’s a process that can only be carried out by looking inwards, with less market research and more self-evaluation”.
Jay Walljasper, editor, Ode

jueves, 22 de febrero de 2007

Chapter Five: Wikipedia, collective intelligence and the long tail participation

“The call is historic because it doesn’t issue from a political party. It issues from the Internet, and it’s democratic because there are cybercafés everywhere. The Web is the weapon, and that’s why old politicians don’t understand what’s happened. They only use it to look at naked chicks”.
Chilean student

Our global society is in the early stages of what could be a media revolution as great as that produced by Gutenberg’s printing press in 1448: the birth of the participatory media. The era of the mass media, which began in the twentieth century, is undergoing a crisis. The way in which people connect to information is being crucially changed by a series of technological modifications. There has been born a new force of citizen journalists, armed with photograph-taking cell phones, connected via the Web and with blogs as their means of publishing.
The question is how does one join the pieces of a jigsaw puzzle without knowing what the final picture looks like? By starting at the edges. That is why we certainly cannot predict the exact shape the communications media will take as a result of this revolution. Neither do we know what kind of citizen will arise as a consequence of the use of the participatory media. But at the edges of the system we perceive signs of change whose impact we can already see.

The long tail
The Internet made a U-turn after the 2001 collapse of the dot-coms. After the bubble burst, the only survivors were the software, sites and proposals that form the so-called Era of the Web 2.0. And this is not just about the Internet – because, in its infrastructure, it implies not only access to the Web (which has been in existence for decades) but also a widely spread, always-online broadband access. An access in which uploading speed will soon match downloading speed.
In the new model, small sites constitute the majority of Internet contents. Google’s success (and that of its advertising service, Google AdSense) lay in reaching the entire Web – the extremes and not just the center, the long tail and not just the head.
Thus, the most competitive companies will be those that reach a critical mass of information thanks to users’ participation and transform said contributions into system services. The challenge: to turn clients and consumers into contributors.

Signs: I participate, you participate, we participate
• Around November 2005, 57% of American youths created Internet contents, from texts to photographs, music and videos (source: Pew Internet & American Life Project).
• You can browse over 25 million blogs in the Technorati directory. The blogosphere has grown 100 times in 3 years.
• In the relatively small market of Argentina, 1 million people are broadband services subscribers. In any small town in the country, one can use Internet at a cybercafé for twenty US cents an hour.
• An Online Publishers Association research carried out in February 2006 has shown that 69% of American users had seen videos on the Internet, that 24% did it at least once a month, and that 5% did it every day .

Ohmy News, CNN & BBC: The birth of citizen journalism
In South Korea, Ohmy News, an online newspaper created by Oh Yeon Ho, a journalist retired from the traditional media, receives 2 million visits a day. But his newspaper has no editorial office or staff, no war correspondents, no prestigious columnists. Just 33,000 ordinary citizens who contribute their articles. It also possesses a rating system that places the most-read notes above the rest. A further novelty: just as people at a bar or restaurant leave a tip, Ohmy News readers can make small donations when they enjoy their reads. One article made USD 30,000 in one day. But Ohmy News is not an isolated case. The CNN has just launched the CNN Exchange section for the rising citizen journalism – where the public can upload texts, photos and videos. “Send in your story. Share your ideas. Leave your mark,” they urge. The English BBC, through its website, also encourages its users to participate. In that country, photos taken with cell phones during the London metro attacks surpassed any expression from the traditional media.

Wikipedia, the collective intelligence

Wikipedia is the best example of a novelty – collective intelligence. This free, user-written online encyclopedia already boasts 1 million articles in the English version and is 12 times bigger than the printed version of the Encyclopedia Britannica. Over 100,000 people from all over the world have contributed to the building of it. It has more visitors than the New York Times and CNN sites, among others. And it has been in existence for only five years.

We, the media
Every second that passes, a new blog is created in the world, according to the blog-searching engine Technorati. 50,000 new posts (entries of information, texts, photos or videos) are entered every hour. And yet a blog is more than a personal page such as have existed since the nineties – the difference being that now the new technologies allow us to link one blog with another, subscribe, and receive a notification every time the blog changes. It’s not just a link; it’s a “permalink”. The permalink is what has transformed blogs from a publishing tool into a conversation tool. From this chaos of dialoging and superimposing communities, the discussion has arisen. The Chat appeared. A “we, the media” world appeared. A world in which the audience is deciding what’s important.
It was none other than Charles Johnson, a blogger, who discovered that a photograph from the international news agency Reuters about the Israel-Hezbollah conflict had been digitally adulterated. The agency had to apologize publicly and withdraw from its files that and a further 920 pictures taken by photographer Adnan Hajj, who was fired.

The time of the Mojos
Research on audience tastes indicates that people increasingly want local news, sports, entertainment, climate, and traffic information, and less agency-produced, long reports repeated ad nauseam throughout the media. People expect to be told shorter stories and to be given relevant information. Based on this information, Gannett, the greatest newspaper group in the world, is trying to make its journalists focus on more local issues. That’s why it has invested in “mojos” (mobile journalists) equipped with laptop computers and always out in the streets, where things are taking place that matter to the community.

Clip culture: vlogs

Towards the beginning of 2006, the vlog (video blog) Rocket Boom was being watched by 350,000 people a day , half of which are outside the USA. A perfectly ordinary girl who every day issued her own three- to five-minute television program on the Internet, giving her own peculiar vision of reality. The cost of producing that program? Twenty dollars a day, plus a USD 14,000 Sony HDV camera and a set in producer Andrew Baron’s apartment in New York’s West Side.
YouTube was born in December 2005 out of the simple idea of making it easier to upload homemade videos to the Web. A million videos had already been published before its official launching. Halfway through 2006, 50,000 videos a day had been uploaded, and people were watching some 100 million videos a day. And these are figures that keep growing.
Contents change, supporting devices change too. Multimedia reproducers become portable. Users download videos to watch in their iPods or cell phones. Entertainment has ceased to be a synonym for sitting on the sofa in front of a square box. Reception moments become more personal.

The end of the media as we know them
For the first time in more than a century, ordinary citizens represent a challenge to the few corporations dominating the mass media. Borders between audience and communicators become blurred and sometimes downright invisible. The old media model was “there is a source of truth”. The new model is “there are multiple sources of truth, and together we’ll determine which are the most important contents and values”. An Oxford professor’s blog can become as popular as that of a Shanghai secretary telling about the trivial details of her daily life in China. The decision is in people’s hands.

Questions arise: How will the brands make use of these new media? How do they want to talk with the new, participative citizen? Even though the media may have become sophisticated, successful models demonstrate that their strategy is among the oldest – telling stories. The challenge is thus to tell stories that move, inspire and promote participation.

miércoles, 21 de febrero de 2007

Sustainability and Triple Bottom Line surf the disruptive wave of New media

Cannibals with forks is probably the best book on Sustainable development since Paul Hawken’s The Ecology of Commerce. Fifteen years later, John Elkington, its author, and Chairman of Strategy consultants, SustainAbility, identifies seven revolutions that are already transforming the world of business. Transcending another diagnosis, and in an attempt to start walking the talk, he goes on to define the Thirty-nine steps to sustainability. We will elaborate more on future posts, for now check SustainAbility.com.

Elkington suggests that we are already seeing the emergence of a new- or renewed -set of values, many of which will be central to the sustainability transition. He defines sustainability “as a new form of value which society will demand and which successful businesses will deliver through transformed markets”.
This is a different approach to the traditional WBCSD or Schmidheiny’s definition.
I admire Elkington’s exactness in the affirmation “society will demand”, a concept we have been emphasizing for some time both in this blog and in the more elaborated Spanish version “el viaje de Odiseo”.

I am convinced that this demand will be the most critical factor of change, it will be sudden, decisive and of great impact. Most businesses will no even know where it is coming from since the power force behind it is strengthening and escalating in what we have defined as the New Web, We Media or the upcoming Web 3.0.

Elkington goes on to affirm that the revolution "is under way and is fueled by growing international transparency, and it will accelerate. This process is itself being driven by the coming together of new value systems and radically different information technologies”.

Due to its publishing date (1997-99) the book does not mention the changes profound changes in the Web 2.0. (which I might have overly stressed in this blog).
We clearly concur that powerful forces are colliding for a major change in the way we produce, consume and communicate. He defines seven revolutionary forces: Markets, Values, Transparency, Life-cycle technology, Time, Partnerships and Corporate Governance.

The “tipping point” (a term coined by Malcolm Gladwell to define the moment when something unique and unusual becomes normal) has come so much closer to occur since then, and it is about to take place, if it has not yet.

I coincide with his seven drivers, but I am convinced that since the publication of this book three of them have proven deeper in strength and have confirmed the erosion of the foundations of twentieth century capitalism: a profound value shift in society, an anew business conscience and the transparency new web technologies have instated.

Business will find its thinking, priorities, commitments, Elkington affirms, and activities under increasingly intense scrutiny worldwide. Some forms of disclosure will be voluntary, but others will evolve with little direct involvement from most companies. He convincingly concludes, “The transparency revolution is out of control”.

martes, 20 de febrero de 2007

Wikinomics meets the Long tail

I have just finished two incredible books: Wikinomics and the Long tail.
My summary on them is the following:

The change already occurred.
In 2004 ITunes redefined the music industry. In 2005 Skype redefined global communications: In only one year, its user base went from one hundred thousand to one hundred million.
In 2006, as amateur blogs began turning the attention away from mainstream media, a new participative and programmable web appeared to rapidly stamp out the static web altogether.
In this sense, Blogger outgrew CNN, Wikipedia replaced Britannica, MySpace outgrew Friendster, Craigslist -Monster and Flickr - Webshots.
Then, You Tube redefined the video industry altogether by introducing the revolutionary concept of “user generated content”. These events prove that this new Web 2.0 is not disruptive in itself, but a platform for thousands of potential new disruptions.

A new era has commenced, one that is characterized by community, collaboration and self-organization.
Having matured beyond its years as a static presentation medium and a collection of stationary documents, the new web is now an actively running conversation.
Its foundations have launched new dynamic forms of community and creative expression.
It has become a massive playground of information bits that are actively shared and openly remixed into a fluid participatory tapestry.
Billions of individuals are connected and actively participating in a different approach towards social development and the creation of a new economic democracy.
The new community principles are: openness, peering, sharing and acting globally.
If we would chart the impact of these changes on business economics, the line currently seems to maintain a gradual ascent, but we are about to experience a steep ascending boost in the graphics as a new generation get out of school and flow into the workplace.
This is the generation that is empowering the new Web.
Connected most of the time they are becoming to be known as the Net Gen. While their parents are passive consumers of media, this new generation are active creators of media and web content. They are participants, not just observers, and therefore they have incredible access to information.
The computer is no longer a static box, but an amazing doorway for interaction.
According to a Pew investigation 57% of them are active content creators and most upload it to the web.
While the boomer generation value loyalty, seniority, security, and authority, the Net Gen treasure openness, innovation, mobility and authenticity.
Their constant participation seems to be characterized by the strong Ethos they demonstrate in their sense of common good and collective social and civic responsibility.
This new entire generation is growing up grouping into thousands of cultural tribes connected by shared interests and less by geographic proximity.
Their tastes are more diverse than the thousand of marketing plans being fired at them. This will signify a radical change for marketers since faith in advertising and the institutions that pay for it, is disappearing, while faith on the individuals is on the rise. Peers trust peers. Top-down messaging is losing traction, while bottom up buzz is gaining power.
As the boundaries between the enterprise and the market dissolve, the opportunity to bring Net Gen and other customers into a relationship of trust with the enterprise in a conversation where stakeholders become cocreators of value, possibly presents the most exiting long-term engine of change and innovation the world will ever see.
We are entering a time where a company’s brand is not what the company says it is but what Google says it is.
This new Web is based on recommendations, where word of mouth becomes even more powerful and the marketing of brands is been amplified by the interactive effect of peer recommendations.
Web Word of Mouth participation is transforming the information age into the recommendation age
More and more use the mass medium less and less. And more and more will soon be most.
In this framework, a new kind of business is emerging: one that opens its doors, one were transparency is a powerful new force for business success, and in which certain companies will have a lead role in redefining marketing and advertising techniques, where trust will be the essence of a new relationship and partnership between companies and customers.
Firms that create trust-based relationship with their stakeholders through this interactive Web, will be able to take advantage of sprouting business ecosystems that create incredible value, originated in these participative and peering relationships between the thousands of vibrant communities online.

miércoles, 14 de febrero de 2007

We Media final conclusions: The influence of online communities on corporate behavior.

As the Web evolves beyond 2.0, thank to open source participative software, people are finding each other online around shared interests, and although these thousands of active communities are not tangible, they are real, this is a not virtual phenomenon as many assume.
Geography is been redefined and becoming totally irrelevant as a Brazilian organic grower starts sharing real time information and content in an extremely efficient knowledge created partnership with a New Zealand farmer who shares his same passion.
This goes further than getting information from Wikipedia, it is no longer about downloading content, people are grouping in specialty communities revolutionizing decision making processes in a way it never seen before. Consumption, production and communication patterns are changing as people, influenced by others they trust online, share news, information create a collective intelligence and constructive partnerships. Since this is a web occurrence, most people are not aware of the enormous activity that is taking place online, since in our “real” world everything flows as usual, but we are about to get our heads up when Technorati will soon announce 100 million registered bloggers and MySace 200 million users online.
Since the demographics are so overwhelmingly young and the Millennials are not in power positions, we are not experiencing yet any real transformation in behavioral patterns nor corporate changes. But these adolescents, that are now partying online, will soon be making corporate, political, and consumer decisions in the real world. They are accustomed to watch little television, and since they access the news online they seldom read newspapers. They do not respond to traditional marketing campaigns or advertisers. They respond to each other. Their trendsetters are their peers on MySpace, people who they trust. Opposed to us, the boomers, they are not to be influenced by mass media, they decide for themselves.
They are accustomed to the constant exchange of ideas online; therefore corporate communications will have to change dramatically in order to dialogue with, and between, these new stakeholders.
As these increasing online communities seem to build themselves around common interests and goals, companies that want to develop relationships, will have to open up and integrate management, employee and customer blogs into a common blogosphere where product, corporate responsibility and customer information will be shared in Wiki like platforms.
Stakeholder’s active participation will probably outgrow customer reviews, and powerful new models of production and consumption will be created based on a new integration of community collaboration and self-organization.

martes, 13 de febrero de 2007

We Media Miami conclusions (III): Entering the Web 3.0

Due to deep changes in technology triggered by open source software and new collaborative media we a defining what some already call the Web 3.0.
As Don Tapscott and Anthony Williams define it in their recently published Wikinomics:
“ This new participation has reached a tipping point where new forms of mass collaboration are changing how goods and serviced are invented, produced, marketed and distributed on a global basis. This change presents far-reaching opportunities for every company and every person that gets connected.”
"MySpace, YouTube, Linux and Wikipedia – today’s exemplars of mass collaboration- are just beginning..."
In their book they go on to describe seven unique forms of peer production that are making the economy more dynamic and productive, and we will discuss more about this in future posts.
But what they affirm in the quoted test is true it is just the beginning of an incredible revolution in of mass collaboration.
My-Wi-Li-You is my aphorism to describe these four revolutionary first entrants to the Wikinomics era, the Fords, the Bells, Sears and Procter’s of this century.
Following with the WE Media Miami conclusions, a new question arises: when the audience, this new participative individual take the overall control of the web and the true Web is born, the Web 3.0, a Web that requires identity, true collaboration and commitment, will “Mywiliyou” survive???.

Jason Pontin, editor in chief and publisher of the MIT's Technology Review, is skeptical about YouTube, “it has not become a journalistic media”
He affirms that Splashcast, recently reviewed, is the “coolest” concept, and will probably challenge YouTube/Google to adapt the concept of user-generated video.
He also states that Blinkxs will revolutionize search video content. Searching text is easy since you can identify words, but searching for video content has been impossible to now. “Blinkx lets you find what you want in video”.

MySpace will evolve with adolescence usage, and as their participants grow up in social media and the Millennials get their fist job, or go to college, MySpace grow out of puberty and probably a new and different MySpace more aligned to the new times will grab the youngsters attention. It is difficult to keep leadership when the audience has the control, as we have seen with MTV, which is paying the consequence of entering adulthood.