Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Is email dead?

Not according to this superb email from Duane Raymond on the excellent ECF email list:

Very very very few new technologies have 'killed' an old technology. What new technologies usually do is do part of what one or more old technologies did much better while making old technologies focus on their strengths.


- Print Press vs Books vs Radio vs TV vs Internet vs Mobiles

- Horse and Cart (now used just on some farms) vs Canals (now used for living and pleasure trips) vs Trains (still king for short-medium distances and large loads across land) vs Trucks (smaller loads across loads with end-to-end delivery vs Boats (long distance, slow spoiling loads) vs Planes (passengers and high-value fast spoiling loads)

- Letters vs. Phone Calls vs. Emails vs. IM/Micro blogging

- Film Camera (still used for high-end professional photos) vs Digital Cameras

One of the few times I can think of when one technology replaces another is when it is a direct replacement: data tapes vs floppy disks vs CD-RW vs DVD-RW vs USB/Flash/SD Cards - but even this still has examples of each 'generation' still being used

...and from using Google Wave, there is no way it will replace email any time soon if ever! It is a great collaboration tool, but isn't an email killer. It will likely replace email's mis-use as a collaboration tool which is what it was intended to do.

For anything to replace email, it would need to:

- Non Proprietary which almost all social networks and media is not

- Be a free both to users and in terms of the licensed technology

- Be an open standard which almost all social networks and media is not

- Do all things much better than email. Most alternatives do only a few things better than email.

- Be as easy to use as email. Hard to get easier than 'compose', 'reply', 'forward', 'delete'

- Not dependent on any one provider

- All data is portable

Email is so flexible it allows LOTS of bad practices - but it also allows lots of good practices. Most social network and IM system prevent most practices but also don't allow many good practices. (e.g. think facebook messages from groups: limited recipient size, no html, no tracking, etc)

So email dead? No way! Facebook and Twitter dead: much more likely :-)



Posted via email from Rob's posterous

Friday, 16 October 2009

Jan Moir - advertising is removed

I'm particularly interested in the Jan Moir and Trafigura stories this week - because they nicely illustrate that you don't need vast numbers of people to make a big difference.

My rough estimate is that 30,000 tweets mentioned Trafigura before they backed down.

I wasn't watching as closely with Jan Moir - but the Facebook group only has about 3,500 members. My impression is that the rate of tweets was at a similar rate to Trafigura, ie 100 or so a minute from this morning.

The key to success I think for the Jan Moir campaign is that it turned people's anger into action by getting them to a) complain to the PCC and b) complain directly to advertisers. To do that effectively you don't need many people - but they do need to be willing to pick up the phone or write an email.

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Jan Moir's homophobia puts her top of Twitter

Jan Moir's nasty article in the Daily Mail today about Stephen Gately's death has put her close to the top of Twitter, with around 100 Tweets a minute currently.

People are being redirected to the Press Complaints Commission to make complaints - it will be interesting to see the rate at which Tweets translate into complaints.

Interesting that some people are posting her article as a Google Doc so that the Mail doesn't benefit from the traffic.

Thanks to my colleague Sarah for pointing this out.

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Using the internet for basic communications

One of the most basic things you can do online is to send out briefing and comment on a news announcement.

Boris Johnson's announcement of a fare increase yesterday produced the following reactions:

·         1.57pm Lib Dem press release response – scrappy and untidy but fast and with lots of detailed briefing on the back of it. Useful if I was a journalist needing a quick comment or anyone trying to get to grips with the detail.

·         3.53pm I get Progressive London’s (ie Ken Livingstone) response – a well formatted but wordy explanation of everything that’s wrong with Boris. A bit too detailed for a press release, not detailed enough to be a briefing.

·         6.12pm I get Boris Johnson’s explanation from the GLA. This is the best formatted of the lot, basically his Evening Standard article cut & pasted. Well written and comprehensive. Serious rather than his usual jokey tone.


I’ve checked and Labour officially don’t seem to have responded to the increase in London (e.g. their London website) – except from via the media. 

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Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Will the #Trafigura injunction hold?

In the couple of minutes since I searched for #trafigura on Twitter there have been an additional 61 tweets on it. So that's thousands per hour, before the peak internet use time of the day.

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Monday, 12 October 2009

Castrol's mass personalisation

Great example from my former neighbour Alex here of Castrol automatically recommending the right engine oil for your car:

Castrol is combining speed camera technology with digital roadside billboards to tell around 200,000 drivers what the best oil for their vehicle is in a new ad campaign.

Ogilvy Advertising conceived the idea, which is an innovative recasting of Castrol's pre-existing 'Right Oil Right Car' service.

This allows anyone to find out what is the best Castrol oil product for their car by telling Castrol what their registration plate number is via mobile or online.

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Astoundingly stupid advertising

GE try to make coal seem more modern, environmentally friendly and sexy by using models.

100,000 views of this video - but not necessarily in the way they want.

Back at work

So if you're trying to contact me I'm around now.

However I've got close to 2,000 emails to wade through so if it's anything urgent it's probably best to phone me.

Posted via email from Rob's posterous