Fluffy Links – Monday May 26th 2014

May 26th, 2014

What a weekend. For Labour. What a weekend. For hypocrites and hangers-on to be punished.

Ryan Tubridy and women.

Product Hunt is like a league table of new startup ideas. All of these are real! But such bullshit bingo with their pitches.

Dark Patterns. Creepy, sneaky, shady ways websites get you to share too much of your data.

This piece on subscription TV not actually performing well has a nugget that to me is far more interesting. YouTube buys Twitch, a site where you can watch video game plays. For a billion dollars. A whole sub culture that a lot of industry types seem to have missed.

The youngins on Twitch would rather watch live videogame action. About 18 million U.S. viewers watched the final game of the 2013 World Series. But Twitch drew 32 million for the “League of Legends” world championship last fall, according to SuperData Research. Boom!

Mistakes Made. Startup-type lessons. Insightful.

New mini feature on Facebook Pages for cafés and restaurants.

Water leak reporting using social media in Brazil. Could work here too.

“A quarter of all songs on Spotify are skipped within the first five seconds” Jim on the Attention Economy.

Pick something to obsess about. It shows you have passion and it allows you to unwind outside of work. Just not My Little Pony.

A conference on email and messaging. Would love to go but U.S. only for now.

Basement Jaxx – Unicorn

2500 people have subscribed to my website instead of coming back each day. You can subscribe to the site using a feedreader or email. I'm also on Twitter. My online marketing blog might also be worth a visit. Thanks for visiting - Damien.

And now the board of Trinity commissions their own app

May 19th, 2014

After the well received reaction to Trinity changing their logo. Oh right. It now seems that the Board of Trinity College, University of Dublin (get used to that) want an iPad app just for their board meetings. The Public Tenders site lists iPad App for Board meetings.

Informally asking and those who dabble in this area think it could cost anywhere from €15k to €25k based on how difficult the “cloud” backend will be.

From the Trinity College iPad app tender

Background & Project Overview

It is desirable for a number of reasons to move to an electronic system of organising and circulating documents for the College Board meetings and for meetings of the Executive Officer Group. Such benefits include environmental gains, financial gains and more efficient use of College resources and staff.

There are a number of ways that the organisation can securely circulate documents. Both commercial options and in-house options can result in savings versus the current processes. Best practice in other educational providers was explored and it was agreed by the Executive Officer Group (EOG) that the purchase of a hosted solution should be explored.

Reminds me of Dave Morin and the “bespoke app” he had made so he could communicate with his secretary.

I guess an app is needed because nobody has already made one. Oh. Hang. On.

But hey CLOUDCOMPUTINGAPPBUZZWORD!

Here’s one take on that new Trinity logo too from Conor Walsh.
New Trinity Logo

“Square acquired by Visa” – Will Secret, Whisper influence the news?

May 19th, 2014

Woke up this morning to this:
John Wilshire Square bought by Visa

How can you trust a system that allows any rumour, lie or planned defamation to be published? Well, American laws for one. It’s a hot startup and has millionaire backers for two. Plenty of startups that do very dodgy things are left unchecked for a while in case there’s a chance they make money and others can profit from it. Ireland would knock and attack an idea like this, bludgeon it with negativity until we kill it. The American way is to encourage success so you can come in later and try and get a cut too.

Valleywag loves Secret. And some really good information has been leaked out through the app. And crazy fun stuff too. It was a Secret post that eventually unraveled the toxic truth behind how Github operated in such an anti-woman brogrammer way.

And the Evernote acquisition rumour was so far untrue. If you read this hilarious Tumblr, most of the rumours are untrue. Yet every now and then… Something like this too would be a perfect hoax, it’s well known that Square is trying to sell itself and is failing to do that. Visa is already and investor and of course the Square founder is already well known for running Twitter. Hoaxes have to have reality as a base.

For hunting stories though, tiny bits of information, rumours that are mostly untrue but with a tiny amount of truth are things you can use to chip away at a story. A lot of investigative type stories are almost negotiations or trades. Approach a source with a little bit of information, see will they give you a tiny bit more when you offer than tiny slice of truth. Take that, move on, uncover more with that and chip away even more until eventually you have a solid foundation for a story and then are confident to approach the main sources you can use/you want for your story.

An hour after the Twitter chatter, nothing has happened to that Square piece. An hour with a rumour or bit of information is a long time in media and a very long time in tech media. But the Paltrow/Martin marriage on the rocks rumour was weeks on Whisper before the conscious uncoupling became a reality. Nieman Labs even goes through the use of apps like these for journalism. Journalism with a small j, mind. Buzzfeed has even inked a content deal with Whisper. Well it certainly won’t be old-skool media would would find that distasteful and would take two years to come to that decision too.

Fluffy Links – Monday May 19th 2014 – A media special

May 19th, 2014

Oh, a very media heavy Fluffy Links this week.

Had a post in draft about the UTV annual report but last night the Sunday Times tweeted they had a story about the same in their Sunday edition. So I put the post live there and then. I was holding it for the Monday when it would reach more people but maybe I need to cop on given I keep talking about ignoring news cycles and the like and to get things out correctly and first yet here I was holding on to it.

And on that. An NPR journalist tweeted out some great information about the firing of New York Times editor Jill Abramson. First out the traps, great. Just tweets, no link to a holding page or page at all. So Vox “storified” the tweets instead of NPR and in a way got the traffic/views for it. NPR wrote a post about things they learned from this. Read it.

An internal report on the future of the New York Times and that was critical of their digital work also leaked out this week. At first a crappy scanned in version appeared, then a full proper digital version. This post highlights 30 points that everyone that works in digital and cares about the future of all types of media should read. To be honest for those already working in digital, this is already obvious. So lots of new unseen ideas for Irish media!

The home page is dead. Well actually, the home page compared to all traffic to your site is dead but it’s no without a heartbeat.

Meanwhile, Eoin Purcell isn’t hugely positive about the physical book market in Ireland.

via Rick. More media thingies. The Beeb are using Whatsapp and Wechat for news distribution to the public around the Indian elections.

Web app to allow you to connect directly and pitch stories to journalists. Just Reach Out.

Guardian highlights great iPhone photo apps that can really make your photos better quality. Catch more in a photo with them.

Whither Simply Zesty? When £3M turns into £200k valuation

May 17th, 2014

Update: This is in the Sunday Times tomorrow so publishing this now and not Monday.

So the Simply Zesty blog is dead since April as is their Twitter account. This week UTV’s 2013 report came out and it was all very positive, mostly but…

So it looks like UTV have written off close to £3M in “value” from their Simply Zesty acquisition. The shareholders got the initial £1.6M in cash and then the other £3M in consideration was written down in 2012, 2013 and moved to zero for 2014. Last year UTV bought the remaining shares off everyone for £200k and didn’t wait until 2017. They were bragging about the savings from that in the report. Uh lads, you were the ones that agreed a £4M valuation.

Report:

From the page numbered 104 in doc but is actually page 106

“The acquisition of the rights from the previous corporate shareholder On 14 January 2013 the Group entered into an agreement with a previous corporate shareholder of Simply Zesty Limited to pay a cash consideration of £200,000 in settlement of their rights in relation to the estimated contingent consideration arising on the acquisition of Simply Zesty Limited. The fair value of the related estimated contingent consideration amounted to £1,031,000″

Simply Zesty £3M write down

Other “highlights” from the report

As outlined in the Strategic Report, as part of the restructuring the Group bought out the contingent consideration rights of the remaining stakeholders within Simply Zesty for nominal sums. The estimated fair value of this contingent consideration amounted to £1,760,000.

At 31 December 2013 the contingent consideration was valued as £Nil

“it also involved the buyout of the contingent consideration from certain stakeholders within Simply Zesty which resulted in a credit on the release of the remaining fair value of this financial liability. The overall impact on the Group’s results for the year was not material

“Free cash flow from operations decreased by £1.7m to £15.7m (Restated 2012: £17.4m), reflecting the decrease in EBITDA of £3.2m, and a £2.9m non cash gain arising on the buyout of contingent consideration rights held by the previous shareholders in Simply Zesty as part of Group fundamental restructuring, the costs of which are included within EBITDA also realising significant gains on the buy out of contingent consideration arising on the acquisition of Simply Zesty in 2012.”

“This restructuring also saw the merger of Tibus Digital Agency with Simply Zesty to deliver as a full service digital agency under the Simply Zesty brand. The integration of these businesses resulted in a change in the management within Simply Zesty and consequently the value of customer relationships was deemed to be impaired and the remaining carrying value of £188,000 was written off.”

Fluffy Links – Monday May 12th 2014

May 12th, 2014

A very businessy Fluffy Links today.

Mixtapes, not dead, the media is different though. How teens discover music.

How easy it is to get a fake story in to the news. With every news org copying from each other, this is textbook media manipulation. Course social media will get blamed for it.

One sheeter summaries of books. Summarist. Only 3 books summarised so far

The Peripheral by William Gibson is on the way.

Wrote this back in 2010. The C words that get engagement.

Big fan of MediaRedef after Jim Carroll recommended it. Here Media/Forward suggests ways it can make money. Hint hint to other online and offline publications. Can an email newsletter make money? Yes it can.

The future from those that are building and investing in areas that will define it. Education really needs to be disrupted. Just in tim training and just in time certification please for business skills, old skool university education to ground us for life. All these college courses dictated by bureaucratic industries doesn’t help at all. Now we have a generation of those that can program in Java and have no idea how a programming language can actually work.

Charlie Munger, Warren Buffet’s biz partner points out three things that have made them successful over a whole generation of business.

1. Hire good people and trust them.
2. Quickly admit mistakes and scramble out of them.
3. Remove your ignorance by always learning.

8Radio back on air for a few weekends this Summer.

The 12 basic principles of animation from 1930s Walt Disney Studios. Yeah, 1930.

“Many of the ecological  principles found in adaptive cycles  could also be applied to  competitive market environments.” How markets really do follow the same path as natural ecosystems. The Slidedeck really is awful looking but the content is excellent so persevere.

Coming soon: Top up your Leap Card with your phone

May 6th, 2014

From the Government Tenders website is a bit of revealing information. A tender has gone out asking for companies to build an NFC system for the Leap Card. The Leap Card is the “integrated” ticketing system, mainly for the Dublin area. The idea with this tender is that you can now top up your Leap Card with your smart phone.

Well, not with all smart phones. Not the one used by most in Ireland – the iPhone. iPhone has yet to support NFC, instead going after iBeacon. But NFC may be on the way. While Android phones are bought more, iPhone users use their phones to do the smart part of the smartphone more. Your website stats will show that. So we could hail this tender as visionary if Apple goes ahead with using NFC in the next while or short-sighted if it does nowhere. Mad how one company can distort perceptions like that.

So here’s the tender:

The National Transport Authority requires an enhancement to introduce the ability to read Leap Card from Smart Phones, and to purchase top-ups and tickets from Smart Phones and then apply the resultant ticket or top-up to the smart card via the NFC functionality on the Smart Phone.

More detail:

The transparent NFC solution aims to provide Leap Card holders, which also have access to a mobile device with suitable NFC capability, a means to:
• Read information from their Leap Card
• Perform a top-up to the electronic purse value on the Leap Card
• Collect a ticket which was purchased on leapcard.ie or taxsaver.ie.
• Collect a purse top-up which was purchased on leapcard.ie.

Great to see smart phones becoming the core of public transport transactions, more of this.

Fluffy Links – Tuesday May 6th 2014

May 6th, 2014

How to make a really geeky Doctor Who style WiFi network name.

Really nice sentiment. Stop making more productivity tools and focus more on developing methods and systems for productivity. Then maybe write a blog post, a manual, a book?

a hammer, a lever, a text editor—assume little and ask less. The tool doesn’t force the hand. But digital tools for information work are spookier. The tools can force the mind, since they have an ideological perspective baked into them. To best use the tool, you must think like the people who made it. This situation, at its best, is called learning. But more often than not, with my tools, it feels like the tail wagging the dog.

Saying “I don’t” is much more empowering than saying “I can’t”. I don’t eat chocolate, I can’t have chocolate. One implies decisiveness, the other implies weakness. I don’t check work email after 9pm, I can’t check work email after 9pm. For me, my voicemail says “I don’t check my voicemail”.

Instagram blog post on The Long Room in Trinity.

The Twisted Celluloid film festival is on in the Triskel in two weeks time. Two Doctor Who movies! And Rubber is also showing. It’s about a killer tyre that makes people’s heads explode. Kinda.

NPR interview with one of the Godfathers of the iPhone.

Instagram gets all the boys to the yeard, I mean, gets the best engagement around.

But on Instagram, content that brand posted delivered 58 times more engagement per follower than Facebook, and 120 times more engagement per follower than Twitter.

Squarespace’s CEO hires people based on trusting the right people. These people:

  • Understand your definition of “good enough.”
  • Are committed to the same outcome as you.
  • Have the right cultural mindset.

The further growth of Snapchat.

Devil in the Details

Fluffy Links – Monday April 28th 2014

April 28th, 2014

The Oreo dunk in the dark tweet? Yeah it’s been done. Flash mobs, yeah they’ve been done, “CompanyX Staff is Happy”, oh do fuck off. I like the sentiment of this post. Plan to be reactive to an undefined moment. If you plan for a known moment, everyone else will be doing that too. Being original is quite an original thing to be, in any form of marketing. Move on from a win, let the other weaker crowds copy that idea then and enwrap themselves in mediocrity.

RHCP lyrics, Kedis talking about a City being a friend, a confidant. Some cities are a deep part of the identity of people.

Friend-washing. Like the term. Via Mat, Terence Eden on brands getting chummy with you on social media. Do your fucking job and then stop, less of the “bants”.

The only reason companies engage in friend-washing is to make you feel guilty when you want to leave them for another supplier.

One day Social Media intro course in Charleville on May 7th.

Interesting list of acquisitions by Apple. They mostly fly under the radar as they’re never really big ones.

Want to do this. Kayaking from day into night in West Cork.

This is doing the rounds. Eat some yeast by-product to prevent yourself from getting too hammered. So where can I get alcohol dehydrogenases?

Nice Slideshare. The emerging global web.

Economies where close to 3 billion people have yet to use the web, but thanks to mobile–won’t have to wait much longer to discover it. This presentation will introduce you to fascinating and innovative services that are re-shaping the web to serve the consumers of tomorrow. Driven by mobile, the power of personal relationships, and the breakneck pace of globalisation, these services provide a glimpse into the business models, opportunities and challenges we will face, when growing a truly global web.

Got a .training domain. DigitalMarketing.training – Let’s see how the single page site it’s on does in Google searches in the next while.

Stripe and subtle animations on a shopping cart page. Love it.

Tweets this week – Week April 21st 2014

April 26th, 2014

“86% of UK smartphone owners accessed social media last year, for roughly 26 minutes a day.” via Facebook Business.

via @elgrom “Ten things we learnt building the Android app Metro10.”

She was so good they bought her company. Maria Giudice, head of Product Design for Facebook, interview. Book.

Full Length Event – Building Paper