News videographer and Flash tutorials

Two of my favourite bloggers – Angela Grant and Mindy McAdams – are leading the way in shedding light where print journalists fear to tread.

Angela has switched to WordPress and started News Videographer while Mindy has posted three great tutorials on Flash Journalism.

New media is better for it.

Google : Friend or Foe?

There’s a new word gaining currency. It’s called frienemy. And it’s being used by a number of bloggers to describe “do no evil” ad giant Google.

Having made online advertising frictionless for millions of pay-per-click advertisers, Google now plans to take its vast small-advertiser network into online display, print, radio and TV ads.

Mark Glaser in Mediashift asks:

And after Google gets its foot in the door for print, radio and TV ad sales, what happens next? Will the fox eat the hens in the henhouse, or continue to play the gentleman in the middle?

How is this likely to pan out?

The Daily Herald’s John Kelly thinks that Google’s Print Ads system will bring in ad sales that will be priced lower than the regular ad sales but higher than the Herald’s current take from so-called remnant merchants who sell leftover ad pages. Kelly can’t imagine a day when big clients such as department stores will be able to make long-term ad deals with newspapers without a live sales rep.

“Major retailers really depend on local salespeople to be their eyes and ears in the local markets,” Kelly said. “We do local research for them. It’s hard to quantify that, and it’s very important. You have a lot of egos involved here. There are a lot of advertisers who feel that they can get a better price through face-to-face interactions over a long period of time. And the way this [automated] model has been built it’s transaction by transaction, at least at this point. If I’m a regular advertiser, a major retailer, I don’t want to deal with this every week.”

Another skeptic of Google’s radio ads pitched in:

“For the guy down the block who has the Shed Kingdom, he’ll always need someone to come and sell radio to him to help him with creative,” Caracciolo told me. “I think [Google Audio Ads] is more for infomercial-type sales, I don’t think it’s for that small mom-and-pop business because who will do the creative for that? Obviously everyone has a microphone on their computer and can do audio editing. But you’d be surprised. A lot of people today don’t even read emails, believe it or not. You think everyone is so computer hip and savvy. But it’s not true,” said Patrick Caracciolo, local sales manager of WLIR FM in Long Island.”

The Daily Herald’s Kelly compares the new relationship between newspapers and the search giant to a courting ritual:

“This is the early part of Google courting us, and it’s hard to tell whether it will be an abusive relationship or a loving relationship. I don’t know the answer to that…For us as an industry, we have to screw our heads on differently and be open to new and different ways. And we have the option of not accepting [ads from Google] if it doesn’t work. And the system that Google has set up is very fair.”


The rise of mobile broadband

Mobile broadband on digital cameras, media players and portable game devices is poised for growth, according to a study by ABI Research.

Annual shipments of such devices are expected to approach 100 million by 2012.

“In the near term, connected portable devices will rely more on 3G cellular connections,” said principal ABI analyst Philip Solis.

“However, the 3G market is fragmented. There is EV-DO and there is HSPA, and different carriers are using different frequencies in different regions of the world.

“Such fragmentation represents a significant challenge. In addition, such devices must compete against smartphones that increasingly include similar functions.”

Solis added that the first products have already appeared, all from South Korea.

Two portable video players – Digital Cube’s iStationNetforce and Cowon’s Q5 – offer 3G connections through add-on HSDPA modules.

The first true device of this class, offering embedded HSDPA, is Samsung’s VLUU i70 digital camera.

The 7.2-megapixel device also shoots video, reads e-books, receives T-DMB television, plays MP3s and video, and allows the user to send or download photos and videos.

Solis says in the longer-term, WiMax has more potential than cellular-based connections. “It is an IP-based network with simpler architecture and better connection to the Internet. Sprint, with its commitment to WiMax, will promote such devices heavily, helping US markets keep up with Korea and Japan in the process.”


Google buys DoubleClick

[via NYTimes]

Google is acquiring online ad company DoubleClick for US$3.1 billion in cash, almost double the $1.65 billion in stock that Google paid for YouTube late last year.

In a single stroke Google has entered the online display ads market and captures US$300 million more ad revenue per annum to push banner ads into major sites such as MySpace, The Wall Street Journal and AOL.

“Google really wants to get into the display advertising business in a big way, and they don’t have the relationships they need to make it happen,” said Dave Morgan, the chairman of Tacoda, an online advertising network. “But DoubleClick does. It gives them immediate access to those relationships.”

Two pieces of the pie includes DoubleClick’s streaming video ad specialist KlipMart and a new Nasdaq-like exchange for online ads, where Web publishers and advertising buyers can participate in auctions for ad space.

What makes a good audio slideshow

“own voice, tightly edited gallery, stellar photography…”

Survival stories always work. This year’s The National Press Photographers Association’s best audio slideshow 2007, “A Prayer For Father Tim”, by Jim Gehrz and the Minneapolis Star Tribune proved that point.

Full list of winners, judges’ comments, read comments Keith Jenkins, and hear the Judges’ podcast. [via Angela Grant]

Best of TED Talks

The talks at TED, the annual technology, entertainment and design conference at Monterey, California are incredibly addictive.

If you want to be inspired and mature overnight, I would recommend getting to a fast connection and downloading every video on this page.

Bravo to Chris Anderson and BMW for putting all this for free online and allowing us to peek into the minds of some of most brilliant and talented people in the world.

Every 20-minute presentation is mind-blowing. A quick and arbitrary top 20:
1. Malcolm Gladwell on spaghetti sauce and the marketing genius of Howard Moskowitz.
2. Ray Kurzweil on exponential growth of information processing that will enable us to reengineer the brain and extend aging.
3. Hans Rosling on the creation of GapMinder and how stats when visualized correctly brings better understanding to big issues of economics.
4.Sir Ken Robinson on how traditional education is failing our children.
5. Rick Warren, author of The Purpose-Driven Life, for a non-religious view of his book.
6. Larry Brilliant on the eradication of smallpox.
7.Jeff Han for his amazing demo of the multi-touch screen.
8.Eve Ensler on the Vagina Monologues.
9.Mena Trott on her very personal blogging journey and the creation of Six Apart.
10. Ze Frank who is just plain funny.
11.Steven Levitt, author of Freakonomics, on the economics of drug dealing.
12.Eva Vertes, on how a young mind thinking out of the box can make a difference.
13.Michael Shermer of Skeptic Magazine that debunks alien kidnappings and mysterious apparitions.
14. Rives for his fresh take on the Internet via poetry.
15.Richard St John for his 3-minute powerpoint on how to succeed in life.
16. Dr Dean Ornish on how a few small lifestyle changes can save lives.
17.Anna Deveare-Smith for her theatrics.
18.Janine Benyus for biomimicry and how we need to learn from our older cousins on Earth on how to stay here.
19. Wade Davis on the preservation of the diversity of cultures.
20. Iqbal Quadir on the GrameenPhone.


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