Posts Tagged 'Pulver'

UPDATE: BlogTV New Homepage Signals Content Discovery as Main Differentiation – and They Launch a New Facebook Application

BlogTV launched toady their new homepage with the following sections:

1. Improved subscription process  – with email and twitter alerts, and future SMS integration. Though this feature was already in earlier in previous versions, now users can easily subscribe to new shows from almost any page at the site

2. “Upcoming” section – the most interesting feature is the new Upcoming part of the site. Sources in the company see this part as key to success of their site.This section will show in the feature shows users might like based on their preferences, their friends preferences and editors choice.

3. Featured shows section – handpicked by the editor, this section will help to promote new shows.

Company sources  believe that these features will create what they refer to as the first live Internet TV listing, and improve their position in the market.

It is interesting to see that BlogTV see content discovery as key to their success. Time will tell if this is another battle in the feature war against Ustream and operator11, or a knockout from BlogTV side. Somehow it seems to me that switching costs are so low in this market, that only brand and strong community tools can create a real differentiation in this market.

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UPDATE – the company also launched a new Facebook application. The most interesting feature there in my opinion is the ability to see if any of your contacts are now live, and the ability to notify your friends easily on your show. See Techcrunch post for more details.

Jeff Pulver Opens a New Consultancy

Jeff Pulver, the guy behind VON, VoIP revolution and an Internet TV addict, is opening a new consultancy.

the Pulver Consulting  group will provide services to startups and early stage companies, as well as established players trying to figure out how to compete in face of disruption. as a person who was involved in creating some of these disruptions, his insights are very valuable.

I know Jeff from his Internet TV period, and the links he found between the processes happening now in this market and the early VoIP era helped me understand the market dynamics and position my business accordingly.

One thing for sure – if you are looking for nice charts and 70 pages presentation with a lot of boxes and arrows – he is not the guy for you. But if you are looking for concrete advice, amazing contacts and flare, I am certain that Jeff is the right person.

For more details, please check this post.

Good luck Jeff!

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Facebook vs. Linkedin – An unpopular opinion

Everybody are using Facebook. At least a lot of bloggers. And yes, I am there too. I am using it to communicate with friends, as well as my business partners.

It is the most efficient social network I know, and I spend a lot of time during the day actually working with it. I market events in Facebook, create special interest groups, and connect to new people. Linkedin seems to be a boring corporate product with no fun at all.

Some of my friends left Linkedin for Facebook. Jeff’s announcement about it even made it to Techmeme front page.

However, here are several questions I ask myself when I read these statements:

1.Does Facebook and Linkedin serve the same need? Not for me. I am using Linkedin as a dynamic address book, that helps me to keep track of my business contacts. I also use it in order to find and connect with new people professionally. I use Facebook to interact with my friends and business partners. It is a completely different need and function. One does not replace the other. If you want to know my job and contact details,contact me through Linkedin. If you to know me – connect with me through Facebook.

2. What can reduce Facebook efficiency and usability for me? Two main things can make me stop using Facebook – too much advertisement and spam. Considering the fact that Facebook needs to make money, advertisement will grow. Spam is controlled in the network today, but the minute I’ll get an unsolicited email, I’ll shut down my profile and move to another network. Which brings me to the next point.

3. Does Facebook treat me as a customer or as a hostage? This is by far the most irritating issue in Facebook approach. Linkedin sees me as a customer. I have ownership on my contact list, and I can export it to my outlook without too much effort. Facebook approach is just the opposite – if you want to keep in touch with YOUR friends you have to do it through the site, as they don’t allow you to export their contact details easily. And don’t start telling me privacy is an issue – THESE ARE MY FRIENDS. If they don’t want me to have their contact details they won’t connect with me in the first place. If Facebook cannot keep their customers happy without forcing them to use their site as communication mean, they have a problem with their value proposition. If they think they offer good enough service, why don’t they allow me to export MY FRIENDS’ contact details easily?

I am using and continue to use both Linkedin and Facebook. Both are good services. I hope that Facebook will allow me, the user, to decide what to do with my contact list.

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Another Hostage

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Weekend links

Scoble found a great new video search engine – Not yet on TechCrunch: killer video search engine (ClipBlast),

Geoffrey Moore from Crossing the Chasm fame has some interesting insights about semantics of our industries: Three Industries Separated by a Common Language

Ayelet, AKA Blonde 2.0, just helped me in explaining Digg to all my non-2.0 friends Blonde 2.0: You Digg?

Christopher Penn continues the debate started in Podcamp Europe about internet TV: Christopher S. Penn: The Long Tail Will Kill You, Jeff Pulver

And, one of my favorite sites discuss Viacom attack against Google – with a great embedded clip: Techdirt: 10 Things Viacom Hates About Fair Use

Have a great weekend!

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How to make my mom watch Internet TV – Follow up

I had the pleasure of doing a brainstorming session at Podcamp EU, discussing ways to increase internet TV viewership. I had a great time at this session, and learned a lot from everyone in the room, as well from comments that followed.

Most of the participants talked about the need to make content discovery and consumption much easier, and some also talked about the fact that there is not enough interesting content out there. Some participants challenged the thesis that we actually have a problem – especially a smart young guy that said that his generation, the early twenties and late teens, is the important one, not the older ones, and this generation doesn’t have a problem to find the content and watch it. We discussed a lot the need for branding and baiting people to see new shows.

Some solutions were suggested:
1. Trailers for shows, to get people to watch the first episode
2. Printed guides for Internet TV, that can communicate with Apple TV for example, and make subscription simple.
3. From a different angle – get as much product placement as possible and increase your budget for higher production quality.

The discussion didn’t end there:

Chris Brogan covered the panel, and added his view: …”I believe the winners of the Internet TV world are those who will band together, move audience by way of driving awareness, and interact well with other producers such that you put good stuff together in one easy-to-find locations…”. Check out his post, and its accompanying 12 comments…
Jeff Pulver take: …”Seems to me that this is a classic long tail play. The long and simple of it. There is no doubt in my mind that there will be HUGE breakout hits that are only available on the Internet and such hits will have mainstream adoption. It is going to happen. In fact for some people, it already has. During the past year a number of people have signed contracts with media companies who were discovered on the Internet…”
Chris Hambley left a lengthy comment on my original post and was kind enough to record the session – you can find it here.

I encourage everyone to read these posts and their comments – it added a lot of value to the discussion.

Now, here is a challenge for you. How can we keep this discussion alive? We are all interested in increasing viewership – so we need to cooperate in best practices and lessons. What’s your take on that?

Thank you all for being a part of this discussion, online and offline.

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Having Fun at the Panel

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BlogTV Announcement – embedded player with co-hosts and chat

The buzz yesterday was true – BlogTV released a new version of their product. See Jeff’s blog post for the full announcement. I was lucky to be one of the first 10 people who got access to the new product, and saw an impressive piece of software.

It is great to see that BlogTV has moved from their portal concept to a more open approach. As I’ve mentioned here – context is a crucial part of live internet boradcasting, and the easiest way to achieve that is by letting users to embed their live streams in their blog.

More to come…

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BlogTV vs Ustream.tv – it is not technology, it is strategy

My friend Jeff wrote about one of the most interesting products in Israel – BlogTV. BlogTV enables users to stream live shows from their webcam to the internet, and 3G phones. It has advanced features such as multicam support. Does it ring a bell? Did anybody say Ustream? Yes, both companies have similar products technically, though Ustream is a bit behind from feature perspective (see my previous post detailing missing features in Ustream). Ustream is the new kid on the block – while BlogTV exists for years. As Ustream features covering all basic functionality of its predecessor, we see another example of technology being a sidekick to the main show – marketing and strategy.

There is a major difference between the companies – while Ustream enables users to embed their player in their own website, BlogTV requires viewers to login and watch the content in their portal. It is not a technical barrier – embedded players are yesterday’s news. So, again, it is only a business question.

I am not sure that this is the right approach to this segment. For years BlogTV was a place where adults showed their days (and nights) to the public, kids showed their face with music in the background and that’s it. The reason is lack of context.

Ustream enables me as a blogger to add another dimension to my work, and serve as another item in my multimedia toolbox. I am not sure that this is the case for BlogTV. The simplest proof to that is that I know BlogTV for ages, but only when I played with Ustream a bit, I fully understood the potential of Personal Broadband Broadcasting. It was great to see Jeff’s stream from his lecture in Stockholm as part of his post describing the event itself. It is true that I still go to both Ustream and BlogTV sites to watch interesting shows, but it is less compelling for me as a potential broadcaster who is interested to enrich his offering with new content types.

So, my personal conclusion is – if you love your stream, set it free!

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He also believed in setting things free…

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