It May Be Free, But It’s Sure As Hell Underwritten

There's quite a wonderful authorial kerfuffle happening between Chris Anderson, whose recent book "Free" has been the target both of plagiarism charges (from Wikipedia, of all places, oh the wonderful irony, one might think Chris actually planted the whole damn thing…) and Malcolm Gladwell, who never met a clever anecdote…

wired ads free.pngThere’s quite a wonderful authorial kerfuffle happening between Chris Anderson, whose recent book “Free” has been the target both of plagiarism charges (from Wikipedia, of all places, oh the wonderful irony, one might think Chris actually planted the whole damn thing…) and Malcolm Gladwell, who never met a clever anecdote he couldn’t convert into a well turned (and dammingly entertaining) book of his own.  

I won’t go into the whole thing, because, honestly, I just don’t have the, er, free time.

However, I do find it noteworthy that Chris’s much-linked to riposte to Malcolm’s initial evisceration comes on Wired.com, where, shock of all shocks, advertising is prominently featured. Free, of course, doesn’t come without a business model.

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And a NYT Profile of Aardvark..

..which I've been talking about for some time…from the piece: Having humans, not software, supply the advice is important. Max Ventilla, who formerly was at Google and is now Aardvark’s chief executive, said, “Often the most useful answers don’t answer the original question. Example: ‘You don’t want to go to…

..which I’ve been talking about for some time…from the piece:

Having humans, not software, supply the advice is important. Max Ventilla, who formerly was at Google and is now Aardvark’s chief executive, said, “Often the most useful answers don’t answer the original question. Example: ‘You don’t want to go to the Caribbean now — it’s the rainy season — you want to go to Hawaii.’ ” ONCE you try Aardvark’s service, you can’t look at Yahoo Answers, the current leader in questions-and-answers, without feeling pity for its now-manifest limitations.

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Profile of Google Lobbyist…

…in the NYT today. Google has begun this public-relations offensive because it is in the midst of a treacherous rite of passage for powerful technology companies — regulators are intensely scrutinizing its every move, as they once did with AT&T, I.B.M., Intel and Microsoft. Some analysts say that government opposition,…

…in the NYT today.

Google has begun this public-relations offensive because it is in the midst of a treacherous rite of passage for powerful technology companies — regulators are intensely scrutinizing its every move, as they once did with AT&T, I.B.M., Intel and Microsoft. Some analysts say that government opposition, here or in Europe, could pose the biggest threat to Google’s continued success.

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When Value Is Created, Let It Be Curated At Scale

Facebook's opening up even more, as CNet reports. Facebook has posted an update to its "Publisher" settings – basically, the instrumentation to your status updates – that makes it possible to broadcast the value you create in the social web through composition – of a status update, a blog post,…

Facebook’s opening up even more, as CNet reports. Facebook has posted an update to its “Publisher” settings – basically, the instrumentation to your status updates – that makes it possible to broadcast the value you create in the social web through composition – of a status update, a blog post, or any other action that you might wish to declare. You can instrument it to be seen only by your network, or your network’s network, or everyone – and it’s that everyone part that makes Facebook a lot more like Twitter in terms of the ability for developers to create interesting executions based on that firehose. Think about what Microsoft did with ExecTweets, but with Facebook scale. Of course, that’s just the tip o’ the iceberg. Exciting stuff.

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Google v. Facebook? What We Learn from Twitter.

Last week I wrote a post in which I opined a bit about Facebook search. In it I wrote: Facebook is way more than its newsfeed, and its search play is key to proving that value, and extending it….No doubt building Facebook search today is akin to building Google ten…

Last week I wrote a post in which I opined a bit about Facebook search. In it I wrote:

Facebook is way more than its newsfeed, and its search play is key to proving that value, and extending it….No doubt building Facebook search today is akin to building Google ten years ago – bigger, most likely, in terms of data, algorithmic, and platform challenges.

If only I had waited a few days, I could have pointed to Fred’s piece in Wired, out this week. He profiles the ongoing feud between the King of Search, Google, and the upstart, Facebook. In his piece, he writes:

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Thoughts on Online Marketing

Many folks have asked me when CM Summit videos would be posted, several are up now. They include the opener, above, in which I give a short overview of the state of online marketing from my perspective – start at about 6 mins in if you want to miss the…

http://p.castfire.com/fAMEb/video/107595/2009_2009-06-09-151450.flv

Many folks have asked me when CM Summit videos would be posted, several are up now. They include the opener, above, in which I give a short overview of the state of online marketing from my perspective – start at about 6 mins in if you want to miss the throat clearing of setting up the show and thanking folks I’ve worked with. Perhaps the key thoughts: People Don’t Join Ad Networks, and Publishers Are Communities of Mind.

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A Wish List for Facebook Search

It's taken a while, but I finally have time to rewrite the post I wrote this morning about Facebook search. For some reason my blog editor ate the post, something that has never happened to me and really threw me off. In any case, this morning I noticed a post…

It’s taken a while, but I finally have time to rewrite the post I wrote this morning about Facebook search. For some reason my blog editor ate the post, something that has never happened to me and really threw me off.

In any case, this morning I noticed a post on Mashable about Facebook’s new “superfresh” search plans – in essence, a plan to make the Facebook newsfeed searchable, and most impressively, to filter that through your social graph. In short, this is a Twitter search competitor with a Facebook twist, and while I think it’s a fine move, it’s nowhere near where Facebook needs to be in terms of search, and it seems a bit myopic: Facebook is way more than its newsfeed, and its search play is key to proving that value, and extending it.

First, a minor rant. Facebook search circa 2009 is akin to Alta Vista search circa 1994, or Ebay search circa 2004: very dumb and entirely lacking in structured, intelligently parsed data. In fact, it’s worse that those two examples. It’s clear that there are almost no intelligent signals in the way Facebook does its internal search, and I can’t imagine anyone is happy with it. A few examples:

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Hunch

I have not yet grokked Hunch, the decision engine from flickr co-founder Caterina Fake and co., but from the coverage, the launch is a hit. Here's Caterina's post announcing it……

hunch-logo.png I have not yet grokked Hunch, the decision engine from flickr co-founder Caterina Fake and co., but from the coverage, the launch is a hit. Here’s Caterina’s post announcing it…

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