Thursday, April 29, 2010

Company Dog-Sniffing 101

I hate being asked what I do.


It’s one of those dog sniffing things that we all do to make sense of the world and sort people into little piles of understandingness.


It’s up there with ‘what part of Auckland are you in?” (socioeconomic profiling) or by far the worst “what did your parents do?” (bloodline check-excuse me have we gone back 300 years?)


I fluff around and run a few words together depending on the company. Suited types call you a ‘contractor’, Chuck Taylor creatives call me a ‘freelancer’, the Company’s Office calls me a ‘director’, conference bios say ‘consultant’ and receptionists tend to call me a ‘temp’.


When I tell people what projects I’m doing they often question the role “yes but who do you report to? Do they not have a very big communications department? Do you have an agency as well -I suppose most of it gets outsourced to a ‘consultant’.” What would probably be more useful would be telling them the amount of projects that I HAVEN’T got. Literally hundreds. I’m serious.


Perhaps I’m the wrong gender, height, flavour, shoe colour or astrological sign but I’m not quite sure what a whatever- I- am is meant to look like but clearly it’s not how I roll out of bed most days.  


If you get a chance, head over to Facebook and watch the video of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg’s keynote at the F8 developer conference.


He’s a 25 year old nerd, in mom jeans, in a zipped up hoodie, with bad gingerish hair. He is also one of the most powerful men (boys?) in global media with bucket-loads of cash. He is a terrible presenter. The most surprising thing I learned from the keynote was that Mark has a girlfriend….go Mark!


See I do it too.  We all want the quick and easy “are you a red one or a green one, poke poke” answer to socially organising people. It’s a bit like search engine tagging.


Watching the video made me think that if IT helpdesk sent some little nerd burger over to reset my password and we started talking about web apps, would I take notice? Would I listen to him or would I think “you’re an IT guy, you don’t know anything about media or communications or advertising. Go home and play World of Warcraft Mark Zuckerberg ITC co-ordinator person.”


It’s a very common organisational burn to discriminate by department and dismiss ideas because you feel threatened in your own little patch. It can be quite humbling having some little freak breezing through the job that you’ve been doing for 30 years, and it’s a very natural reaction to dehumanise someone by tagging and pigeon holing. I’m going to make it my new hobby to be a ‘Zuckerberg’ spotter. I’m sure there’s some vanilla, totally forgettable, ugly, mutated person out there that will cure AIDS or make me look like Rachel Hunter or create a cool web app. I’m pretty sure they aren’t the company stars or the person that has the most friends on Facebook. Maybe it’s the receptionist that asks me every morning “do you enjoy temping?”


I’ll go and suss her out.








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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Pure Chocolatey Copywriting Genius

Advertising is a business of words, but advertising agencies are infested with men and women who cannot write. They cannot write advertisements, and they cannot write plans. They are helpless as deaf mutes on the stage of the Metropolitan Opera.
David Ogilvy 
I tend to agree so when breathtaking genius like the Whittaker's "Fair Enough" TVC comes along it makes me very, very happy.
Hello chocolate lovers


Because Whittaker’s is a New Zealand company

We like things to be fair


So when you hand over your hard-earned money for our chocolate

We make sure that you enjoy only the world’s finest ingredients


That’s fair


Being a New Zealand company we like to make our chocolate here and employ locals to do it


That seems fair too


So when we were given the opportunity to source ingredients that are guaranteed Fair Trade and reward the local farmers with a fair price


Well that definitely felt like the fair thing to do


Whittaker’s creamy milk fair trade chocolate from Andrew and Brian Whittaker


Fair enough too
View the TVC "Fair Enough" here   (sorry flash so can't embed)
Saatchi & Saatchi Wellington. If anyone knows who the copywriter is let me know and I'll add their deets.

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Monday, April 26, 2010

My Chat With Ed Swift- Facebook: Privacy vs Sharing

Chat with Ed Swift  about the Facebook developments following the F8 conference last week.
PS Did you know Ed has been nominated for the New Zealand Radio Awards 2010!

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My Chat With Ed Swift- Facebook: Privacy vs Sharing

Chat with Ed Swift  about the Facebook developments following the F8 conference last week.
PS Did you know Ed has been nominated for the New Zealand Radio Awards 2010!

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Friday, April 23, 2010

Social Media Measurement Framework

<img style="visibility:hidden;width:0px;height:0px;" border=0 width=0 height=0 src="*xJmx*PTEyNzE5NzI4NzQzMzEmcHQ9MTI3MTk3Mjg3Nzg3OCZwPTEwMTkxJmQ9V*ZfZW1iZWRfZG9jdW1lbnQmZz*yJm89YjY4/NjE3ZDM*NzdkNDQyY2IzMTFjNTBjMzExOWFjZmUmb2Y9MA==.gif" /><div style="width:477px" id="__ss_3818875"><strong style="display:block;margin:12px 0 4px">Social Marketing Analytics: A New Framework for Measuring Results in Social Media</strong> <div style="padding:5px 0 12px">View more documents from John Lovett.</div></div>



I'll have a look through. I like this kind of stuff although please forgive my cynicism. There is a real land-grab for social media metrics, methodologies and expert frameworks at the moment to move the discussion out of the 14-year old kids on Bebo space. It's a good thing and I too am a bit of a theory geek. However, the more time I spend in real organisations and working on real issues I see more limitations of a purely objective approach  and the concept that media can be 'measured' comprehensively is still not one I'm entirely sold on. Appreciate this work being out in creative commons. Some light weekend reading for me! 


Altimeter Report: Social Marketing Analytics (With Web Analytics Demystified) « Web Strategy by Jeremiah Owyang | Social Media, Web Marketing

John Lovett

Jeremiah Owyang 

Critique by Dennis Howlett on ZDNet

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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Who Owns Copyright On Tweets?

I’ve been wading through trying to make sense of this question.
My main query is around attribution and republishing.
Can you take my tweets and publish them in a book or article without my attribution?
Can you take my images and put them on your website or materials without attribution?
Most bloggers head back to the Twitter terms and conditions and pull out this phrase:
We claim no intellectual property rights over the material you provide to the Twitter service. Your profile and materials uploaded remain yours. You can remove your profile at any time by deleting your account. This will also remove any text and images you have stored in the system.
From this, the writer’s claim that therefore, you as the author own your content.
It doesn’t actually say that. It says that Twitter doesn’t own it. What needs to be proven if whether or not the content is copywritable in the first place.
To my limited knowledge, this hasn’t been tested in law yet (anywhere in the world) so it’s all a bit guess-workery (yes that is a real word).
So the main question becomes:
Is there such as thing as a copywritable tweet?
The legals seems to think that conceptually, there is such a thing as a copywritable tweet. Again, all yet to be proven.
Copyright attorney Brock Shinen has written an excellent post that goes further:
Twitter can’t tell you whether or not you create or own a copyright – it doesn’t have the legal ability to do so. So if you own any copyrights, it’s not because of Twitter not owning them, it’s because the law provides for ownership of them which initially vests with you, the author.
Hmm? So where to from here?
The Twitter terms of service also state:
Twitter also […] encourages users to contribute their creations to the public domain or consider progressive licensing terms
So I did today. I think? With
You can send a message to @tweetcc via Twitter including the words  "I license tweets under CC Attribution Non-Commercial " ( or whatever progressive licensing terms you choose).
I've gone for attribution, non-commercial. So basically people can share and remix freely, attribute and if it's commercial I want to know about it.
Done. Whether it has any legal legs I have no idea. But it’s interesting to start thinking about.
Expect to see a lot more discussion on this on this one and maybe a few court cases as the attention economy scrambles for ideas.
Further references:
Original Mark Cuban post  "Are tweets copyright?" post
Good slideshare preso from SxSWi 2010 "Can you copyright a tweet?"
Twitter Terms of Service

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Monday, April 19, 2010

Icelandic Volcanoes Go Bjork #ashtag

The Mum Media Monitor

Just had a wee coffee spill..fall off chair laughing's not that funny but it kind of is....the Mum media monitor...
Found when looking for reviews of note taking applications from Mashable:
  • I've tried some note programs, but never really got into it. I'd like to hear from some of you who use them and find out what you use them for.

  • Suzanne
    1 year ago
  •  in reply to Linda Roeder

    I use Luminotes for everything--keeping tracking of recipes, planning events, coordinating grants, making notes of things to read or write, linking to relevant web sites.

    I like how easy it is to link one note to another and how easy it is to share with others.


    (Disclosure -- I am the developer's mother)

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    Thursday, April 15, 2010

    Official Twitter Stats From Chirp

    Presentations from

    Chirp, Twitter's developer conference, have showcased the growth and the innovation of the service.

    A few of the statistics announced include:

    • Twitter has 105,779,710 registered users
    • 300,000 new users sign up per day
    • Approximately 60% of them are coming from outside the U.S
    • Twitter receives 180 million unique visitors per month
    • 75% of Twitter traffic comes from third-party applications
    • 60% of all tweets come from third-party apps
    • Since the new Blackberry application was launched, it has accounted for 7 to 8% of new sign
    • Twitter now has 175 employees, up from 25 one year ago
    • There are 600 million search queries on Twitter per day
    • There are over 100,000 Twitter applications
    • Twitter gets 3 billion requests a day through its API
    • 37% of active Twitter users use their phone to tweet

    While the company is making several announcements at Chirp, including

    the archival
    of all public tweets since 2006 with the Library of Congress, these statistics confirm the impressive growth and potential of Twitter.


    Thanks to Audrey Watters Read Write Web

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    Wednesday, April 14, 2010

    International Twitter Phenomenon

    <div style="text-align:left;font-size:x-small;margin-top:0;width:512px;">INTERNATIONAL TWITTER PHENOMENON , @JENNSDRUNK - watch more funny videos</div>
    Fantastic. True. Awesome. Some sweary words.

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    Tuesday, April 13, 2010

    Unofficial Official Info Act Guide

    Official Information Act 1982 (OIA) or the Local

    Government Official Information and Meetings Act 1987 (LGOIMA).


    Requests under the Act. Be very afraid.

    There seems to be a bit of confusion on this one although I’m not sure why.

    EVERYTHING YOU DO IS REQUESTABLE (when it's public agencies). So this stuff isn't just important for public sector wallahs. If you have dealings with a government organisation your meeting doodles could go in the big archive box too.
    (A bit simplistic because there’s also sorts of James Bond things about protecting secrets and not eavesdropping on the Queen and all that but it’s a general guide and I’m not
    lawyer and it takes to long to explain otherwise).


    Documents, especially report type documents and invoices for cups of coffee and airfares seem to be flavour of the month with media but in general, EVERYTHING.

    What information can you be requested?

    You can ask for any specified official information that is held by a Minister or central or local government organisation.

    This can include:
    documents, reports, letters, memoranda, emails and draft documents;

    non-written information, such as video tapes or recordings;

    the reasons for any decisions that have been made about you;

    manuals which set out internal policies, principles, rules or guidelines; and

    agendas and minutes of meetings, including those not open to the public.


    What does this mean?


    If you’re working on a “public money is paying for this” project then someone can all or email you right this minute and ask for all your stuff. EVERYTHING. It might be the unemployed nutter that’s protesting for more right for feijoas, it might be the dashing John Campbell, but there’s not many ways out of it.


    I have been on projects that have had to stop for two weeks to respond to an OIA request to meet the 20-day deadline to respond and pull all the crap together.


    It’s quite terrifying having the contents of your email purged and printed for public dissection and the experience has left me just a wee bit paranoid (I now wear tinfoil undies to work). The little red book that you doodle on in meetings..yup that goes too.


    In addition to tinfoil undies, I also regularly beat people that take notes on everything in meetings (can someone make a file note on that stupid thing the GM just said so it can get on the telly—great thanks) and reserve special Friday beatings for people that document the organisation’s bowel movements via email.  This includes you ad agencies and especially PR company tarts that write short essays on how an unravelling media issue should be managed. Pick up the phone or I will beat you with it.


    “Mayor Rhonda Fagg ran into one of the stakeholders last night at the Viaduct and they got on the absinthe and it’s all sorted now cos I think he’s got a bit of a thing for her <smiley face>”.


    Is all very  LOL for you but not for your client.


    You should have seen the sheer terror when I asked a member of parliament  “can you request MP’s text messages under OIA?”

    (Turns out you can’t, they can change shapeshift)


    government Ministers in their official capacity (information which is held by Ministers in their capacity as MPs or private individuals is not official linformation);

    but the unplanned punking was quite amusing.


    I was told that writing DRAFT all over everything somehow made things magically invisible but a quick check through the Act and I can’t see that being true. Writing PRIVATE AND CONFIDENTIAL certainly makes no difference; other than drawing more attention to the thing you don’t want seen.


    Have a read through the guide or I’ll beat you.


    PS. If you are requesting information, don’t be a goat. Most organisations trip over themselves to be helpful and compliant. Ask clear questions about what you want and what you want it for to scope the request. If you request everything on a five-year public works project you’re never going to be able to go through all the crap anyway unless you’re Rain Man.




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    Monday, April 12, 2010

    You Must Think We’re Really Weird?

    I like the variety of moving around a lot of different organisations and it’s been about six years since I’ve had a permanent job. I don’t think I could go back to one really but never say never (if the power gets disconnected, homelessness etc).


    You see more things, meet new people, disappear for days at a time and play the ‘I’m just contract,- I don’t think I need to be on the kitchen roster’ card.


    Something I always get asked is “what do you think of the place?” and more commonly "you must think we're really weird?"


    Most organisations are strikingly similar (I’m a ‘pattern matcher’so I tend to see sameness -as opposed to ‘deconstructivist’, scientisty types who break things down).


    I definitely see the difference going between private and public sector in the decision making area. Private is more competitive, public is more consensus based and, refreshingly, more open to diversity in the workplace.  I like both.


    The main thing I notice is how much better I function by being a step removed and not getting emotionally caught up in the company culture.


    It’s a hard one because organisations try to develop and invest in people beyond a simple task orientation (mow the lawn and leave, here’s your money) but like any relationship, sometimes people get under your skin and the last thing you want to do is sit in a cubicle with them for 40 hours a week (hence the term ‘going postal’).


    Things I’ve learned:


    1. Always be friendly “ Hi, how was your weekend?” is quite possibly the best investment you can make in your career
    2. Go to Friday night drinks. Don’t be a Nana. You don’t have to go every week but a wee lemonade with the tribe can break down a lot of barriers. It’s easy to dehumanise work colleagues. Lemonade, and other associated beverages, rehydrate the human-ness. How many times have you thought someone was a tosser and then you have a proper chat to them and suddenly you’re best mates?
    3. Watch your emails. Nothing creates as much fury as “ attached with changes”…how about “ a few suggestions for you to have look through <smiley face>”. Ah, much nicer. Email battles and thoughtless wording are passive aggressive pettiness. Cut it out. Especially you girls!
    4.Let people be good at their jobs. If the General Manager of JellyBeans Colouring has been at the job for 20 years and presents jellybean colour schemes to you, respect their experience. Again, watch your wording on feedback and ask questions.
    5. There is always a way to get round the FaceBook or YouTube firewall.
    I always remember a great thought by Prof Henry Mintzberg on organisational behavior theory and MBAs: You can study all you like but the two hardest things are real people and real money. You can't study those things, you just have to get in the game.
    What things have your learned? What are you figuring out?










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    Sunday, April 11, 2010

    Rugby World Cup 2011 Beige Bullshittery

    I have upgraded my keyboard to express how angry I am about this.

    RWC2011 --you are shit.

    I never use my sweary words online..this is the first are shit.

    I'm so angry.

    [Disclaimer: I have been paid $$ to consult on digi strat for RWC2011]

    1. The song- Not a NZ song..we have some of the best songwriters in
    the world and some retarded expert from out of town decided to use a
    trashed pongo super crapola song..that make me stage one angry...(plus
    you bunged up a very simple YouTube release..I'll let that one go.we
    all make mistakes..)

    2. Stage 2 angry: Rugby World Cup TVCs

    I can't begin to express how angry this makes me.

    Beige on beige on beige with no positioning, no call to action and a
    10 year old typography. Tears roll down my face as blood boils in my

    The RWC2011 ticketing campaign TVCs are quite possibly the most
    disgusting piece of arrogant beige on beige bullshittery this country
    has ever seen.

    A bullshittery mashup of rugby that a high-school student could have
    done on iMovie.
    A call to action of ..what? I missed it..too much text?
    I was busy being told what rugby was by the bullshittery highschool
    mashup from 15 years ago.

    This is your money your New Zealand. What a wasted opportunity to
    demonstrate New Zealand creativity.

    Damn I'm angry.

    And so disappointed.

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    Friday, April 9, 2010

    PODCAST: Chat with Jim Mora Radio NZ on AOL Bebo

    Full version is 24 minutes but think I'm at the end of this clip somewhere-- last 5-7 minutes.
    Afternoons with Jim Mora The Panel 

    Source Radio New Zealand National  8 April 2010

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    Thursday, April 8, 2010

    Totally 100% Trend!



    Totally 100% Trend!

    animates a segment 
    from the new Showtime edition of This American Life. It’s the story of a class that becomes obsessed with video-taping everything everyone does… until, like Lord of the Flies, things go awry.

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    Wednesday, April 7, 2010


    I started to write a real brainy post about sponsorship strategy cos I used to be the "no we're not giving you any money but you can have a plastic sipper bottle" person for a company that got 46 billion requests per day*. I don't do so much of it nowadays but I just got a request this mornign and not to do it.
    So, then I felt guilty for thinking that because fundraising person was a nice person raising funds and we need more people like that in the world and not curmudgeons like me etc. To appease my guilt I was going to write helpful tips with little bullet points and snappy american business writing words.
    I got distracted and starting looking at OMG! cat and keyboard cat and all the other hilarious cats on the intarwebs and (have cats always been funny? were cats funny before the intarweb?) cats! so funny...
    so here's a photo of a cat with a bowl on its head that someone put there to take a funny photo and put it on the intarweb for general public amusement hahahaa
    *no I made that up

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    Tuesday, April 6, 2010

    Journalism:The New Dark Side



    God you’re all weird.


    In Grey Lynn. With your technology allergies (urgh and iPhone—eeew don’t touch it, you might catch “capitalism”). Trying to be cultured and whinging on about the ‘dark side’ till you lose your job at and evil global media company, (Fairfax ain’t no home-based cottage industry sweetheart), and turn up in my inbox grizzling for a job and claiming to be a Yoda at corporate communications.


    It seems the new sniffy offence to be caused to the superior breed of press release regurgitating beings is me having a blog. Me! A blog! Can you believe it?!


    “What do you [airquotes] BLOG about?”


    “Who reads your [airquotes] BLOG?


    [sniff sniff.. drink more free wine]


    It seems that my failure to have written the “Thanks a Bunch!” column for the Franklin County News disqualifies me from such endeavours.


    Upon pointing out to the Grey Lynn journotards that perhaps they should try it because you get a chance to say words like “arsehat” and oh, it may even help you to build a profile as a journalist and get more work opportunities so you can buy some more art deco crap for when you move to Point Chev as part of the great seven-year journalist migration—they looked confused (“you know like Jeremy Clarkson, own column etc” …blink.. blink.. confused).


    It was the same confused look that I got from a TVNZ superior media-being when I said that I watched Maori Television (“You watch what? Do you work for them?”..blink.. blink.. confused).



    Perhaps with all the ‘culture’ and organic free-range soy duckfat Westmere butchery troughing and pretending to live in a quaint European village you don’t have time to put your head up and care about stuff like the total imminent destruction of your industry and a little thing called “media fragmentation” . And if the iPhone is the root of all evil, then TiVo is his cousin and you certainly don’t want to think about what that may mean to you (“golly Kathryn Wilson makes some nice shoes…oooo yes she does!”). Much better to save the environment and stay in the dark and talk about shoes.



    So while you journotards continue to write gripping stories like this in our national print media:


    "Dozens of residents in Auckland's Grey Lynn had murky water running out of their taps last night".


    (Oh God no! Was the Smeg front loader alright?)


    I will continue to blog, about nothing, to myself.


    If that’s OK with you?

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    Thursday, April 1, 2010

    My Awesomely Divine Easter Message

    Crucifixion According to St Mark

    Date: 1947

    Medium: oil

    Dimensions: 800 x 1095 mm

    Collection: Christchurch Art Gallery

    I wanted to write something about the 'historical person with the name starting with J'  and Easter but everyone tends to freak out and sends me links about German pagan harvest festivals (..sigh..yes I know, I did third form social studies too).
    It seems the American Christian Right has hijacked the J word and made it all intolerant and nasty and Sarah Palinish and somehow linked the J word to tax reform and guns and lots of yucky other things that have very little to do with the stuff  that 'actual historical person starting with J' talked about. The church is a very imperfect thing because it's made of munted imperfect me.
    So let's call him Joshua (cos that's actually his name and hopefully won't trigger your gag reflex).

    The English name Joshua is a rendering of the Hebrewיהושע
    ‎ "Yehoshua," meaning "Yahweh is salvation", from the Hebrew root ישע
    , "salvation," "to deliver/be liberated," or "to be victorious."[1][2] It often lacks a Hebrew letter vav (ו) before the shin (ש), allowing a reading of the vocalization of the name as Hoshea (הוֹשֵׁעַ) - the name is described in the Torah as having been originally Hoshea before Moses added the divine name

    "Jesus" is the rendition in English of the Greek transliteration of "Yehoshua". In the Septuagint, all instances of "Yehoshua" are rendered as "Ἰησοῦς" (Iēsoūs/Jesus), the closest Greek pronunciation of the Hebrew.[4][5]

    Joshua is a pretty important dude regardless of your faith, and to try and chop him out of Easter is a bit intolerant and Sarah Palinish in its own way. The trial and crucifixion of Joshua is one of the most significant events in world history. It has inspired some of the most beautiful art, music and architecture in the world.  Yes, bad things have happened too, and as someone who hasn't always been a fan of Joshua, I hear you-yes I do. But the more I've got to know Josh, the more I really like him- he's just a little bit misunderstood and seriously misquoted. Come to your own conclusions.
    Happy Easter from me and Joshua :)

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