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Mar 7, 2008

The New Internet Roles with Social Media

Unlike mass media, users take proactive roles on the Internet. Here are the emerging roles.

Creators are entrepreneurs, writers, academics, programmers, webmasters, animators, photographers, cartoonists, videotographers, and musicians who create and use the Internet to distribute their works. Over 100 million use blogs like Blogger, FlickR, TypePad, or WordPress to post photos and writings. Huge numbers post videos on Youtube and other sites.

Most work alone. They do their own research online or offline; and post what they learned. They have hundreds of friends, but typically not the numbers of a pHub.

pHubs - personal hubs

The pHub specializes in social engagement gathering thousands of friends at social networks like MySpace, Facebook, Bebo, Mixi, and LinkedIn. They are most likely to review, rate, comment, bookmark, subscribe to, forward, and post the works of favorite creators to share with friends.

Publicists, recruiters, consultants, investors, and business development personnel are most likely to become pHubs. They are the most enthusiastic from among the 300 million and growing social network users.

gHubs - global hubs

gHubs create content and engage users globally in discussion. They source information from creators, consolidate related information, publish for global view, and listen to user conversation to guide their forward publishing. Their audience can be millions.

Large technology bloggers, like Engadget, Gizmodo, ReadWriteWeb, SlashDot, TechDirt, TechCrunch, ZDNet, and others have become gHubs. Legacy publishers like Internet.com, Infoworld, and others have faded into obscurity.


Consumers rarely search to learn. They rely on pHub friends and gHubs to learn about interesting news, trends, groups, politics, games, widgets, products to buy, and other activities. They click to join, use, buy, or read more.

The average consumer calls a friend for help - rather than solving problems themselves. Social networking makes it easy to identify the friend who would know the answer, perhaps with a quick poke or wall post.


Will social networks limit search to the creator community? Has mass media been displaced by social media with millions of circles of friends?

Should legacy gHubs use services like Ning to create their own social networks? Or take anchor roles in existing networks? Will the growth of pHubs threaten gHubs?

Who are you in this new world? Who do you want to become?

(c) Dash Chang, 2008

NEWS: Advice for Apple iPhone start-ups

March 6, 2008 7:09 PM PST
Advice for Apple iPhone start-ups Posted by Stefanie Olsen

High-flying venture capitalist firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers placed a $100 million bet on Apple's iPhone on Thursday by creating the iFund.

KPCB partner Matt Murphy will manage that gamble, by heading up a team that will invest in game-changing applications for the mobile Internet. His group will include KCPB co-founder John Doerr and Sun Microsystems co-founder Bill Joy, along with high-ranking advisers from Apple.
Apple makes iPhone more like BlackBerry Times Online, UK

Apple has ramped up the pressure on RIM, the BlackBerry maker, by announcing that the iPhone will now be able to link up with corporate e-mail systems, ...

Steve Jobs Gives Go-Ahead to iPhone VoIP Mobile Magazine
Well, Steve Jobs and Apple have decreed that they will allow VoIP over a Wi-Fi connection if someone develops the application for the iPhone. ...
EA confirms Spore, other games for iPhone Macworld, CA - by Peter Cohen
Electronic Arts' (EA) demonstration of Spore running on the iPhone during Apple's introduction of the new iPhone SDK was more than just a ...
AIM comes to the iPhone Macworld, CA - by Jim Dalrymple
In a series of demos showing how applications can be made for the iPhone, Apple called on several companies to come on stage and show what ...
Apple CEO Steve Jobs Rejects Adobe Flash Support For iPhone AHN (Ed: Quicktime competes with Flash)

NEWS: Cha-Ching! AOL Cashes In

by Laurie Sullivan, Thursday, Mar 6, 2008 5:00 AM ET

"The first company that effectively figures out how to optimize advertising yields from Web sites will be in a position to increase its valuation multiple folds," says David Liu, AOL's SVP for social media, messaging and home pages. "We're all making good money on portals and search. The next area is to optimize the yield in social network sites." ...

Making revenue-sharing possible, AOL Wednesday launched the AIM 2.0 Developers program, providing free access to the application source code required to build the instant messaging service into sites and applications.

More than 235,000 third-party developers have signed on to the program since AOL launched Open AIM in 2006. The AIM service has enabled developers to create and integrate applications into the instant messaging platform that let users send buddies money, or alerts to notify when friends post new pictures and videos.

Ed: AIM and Platform-A are now open platforms allowing third-party developers to make money from advertising.

Mar 6, 2008

Facebook viral marketing

Facebook viral marketing: When and why do apps "jump the shark?", by Andrew Chen

Modeling user acquisition

First off, let's look at some ways to model user acquisition. You first start with a couple constants:

  • Invite conversion rate % = 10%
  • Average invites per person = 8.00
  • Initial user base = 10,000
  • Carrying capacity = 100,000
    (note that these are just example numbers)
Ed: Well written article, but the hypothesis may not reflect social realities.
  • Thousands of Facebook members have endorsed termination of widgets that force more friends to install. This push strategy is socially out of date.
  • Social applications win by pull. As each friend installs, their friends discover the application and installs. Thus, as recommended by Mark Zuckerberg of Facebook, developers should focus on great products, not viral marketing.
  • Bloggers win via persistent pull. As you write each post that expands the relevancy of your content, more readers install your feed - spreading the word to their friends.

With an application or blog, the result should not be modeled as a one time event producing a return curve. It comes from incremental improvements to the application and content - producing long term growth.

Social networks provide only the tools for potential viral growth.

Mar 5, 2008

ANALYSIS: The Viral Nature of Top Widgets

Widgets show as panels, sections, or links on a user's desktop, personal page, social profile, blog, website ... This changes impression counting as any Internet page can be logged by dozens of IChannels as their views.

Viral discovery of widgets through friends at social networks has outgrown use of widgets on desktops, personal portals, and blogs - and perhaps even advertising widgets.

Apple - Downloads - Dashboard - Top 50

Top 50 Dashboard Widgets. ... This widget brings you the feed from “A New Mac
Tip Every Day” in your Dashboard.
Yahoo! Widgets: useful, fun, beautiful little apps for Mac and Windows
1000s of free Widgets help you save time by bringing your favorite content and ...
comScore Widget Metrix
These objects are most often referred to as “widgets,” but may also include other naming conventions such as Facebook “applications” and Google “gadgets. (tables)
MySpace.com Widgets Reach Largest U.S. Audience
In November 2007, nearly 148 million U.S. Internet users viewed widgets, representing 81 percent of the total audience. MySpace.com widgets had the widest audience, reaching more than 57 million Internet users, while Slide.com ranked second with 39.2 million viewers. Google.com has the sixth widest widget-viewing audience with more than 19 million viewers.

“Top Friends” Tops Facebook Application Rankings
The inaugural Facebook application rankings revealed that more than 20 million Facebook visitors, or 61 percent of the site’s U.S. audience, engaged with an application in November. Visitors between the ages of 18-24 were twice as likely as the average Facebook visitor to engage with applications, while those aged 25 and older were less likely than average to exhibit this behavior.
Widget Definitions
The current universe of widgets is defined as embedded Shockwave Flash objects; certain JavaScript objects (e.g. Technorati, Feedburner, AddThis;) and Facebook applications. The comScore Widget Metrix service will evolve in its tracking of widget file types as the market dynamics and content delivery systems change. The report currently focuses on the individual widgets, and not the platforms that deliver them. Desktop widgets (i.e. Apple, Google, Yahoo desktop apps) are not included in the reporting.

Web widget From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The web widget is a portable chunk of code that can be installed and executed within any separate HTML-based web page by an end user without requiring additional compilation. They are derived from the idea of code reuse. Other terms used to describe web widgets including: gadget, badge, module, capsule, snippet, mini and flake. Web widgets often but not always use DHTML, JavaScript, or Adobe Flash.

Technorati Widgets: Blog Widgets

This widget displays the top five news stories from mainstream media sites ... The Top Searches Widget shows the ten most popular search terms from our ...
is a leading provider of applications and widgets on the web. RockYou widgets include photo slideshows, glitter text, customized Facebook applications and voicemail accessories that are simple to use and enable people to frequently refresh their online style. Founded in 2006, RockYou has over 35 million users, serving over 180 million widget views per day in more than 200 countries.
About Slide
Slide is the largest personal media network in the world, reaching 144 million unique global viewers each month and more than 30 percent of the U.S. Internet audience.
TypePad - Widgets for your Blog - AdaptiveBlue Last.fm Top Albums ...
AdaptiveBlue Last.fm Top Albums Widget. adaptive-blue-logo.png. Display your Last.fm Top Albums on your Typepad blog using this cool SmartLinks Widget. ...
FLANTURE: Top 5 Flash Widgets in 2007
One of those web related trends was apperance of new widgets as ornaments for blogs but some of them were also very usefull. I made a list of Top 5 Flash ...

Mar 4, 2008

Profiling the Internet and Online Advertising

Millions of users view billions of pages and trillions of ads, everyday. Here is the process.

TermDataMetric Issues

One billion - of 6 billion global population

US 164.6m active of 220m

High growth in China and India
Shared device at home
Cookie deletion inflates unique user metrics
Non-additive across domains

DevicesPC's to laptops to phones and gadgetsMultiple devices per user complicate tracking
Visits / Sessions

Neilsen says 11 per week

End of session definitions vary
DomainsWebsites visited
Neilsen says 27 per week;
105 per month
Changing domain ownerships and partnerships complicate tracking
Pages per userNeilsen implies 60 minute sessions; 60 pages per session; over 700 per week

2,400/month over 20 hours

Additive across domains
Videos, Open Social, and games reduce relevancy of impressions as metric

RSS feeds counted separately from pages

Ads per page

comscore says 35.1 per visit

TechCrunch serves dozens per page
Google serves 4 per skyscraper

Trillions per day

Gadgets serve ads to panels of a page

Games serve many ads per session

Video serves prerolls, postrolls

ClicksUser clicks on ads - 0.1% to 0.9%

Click fraud
Habitual clickers
Accidental clicks

RetentionRepeat user Case, New York Times

(c) Dash Chang, 2008

Are we blind men touching the elephant? (c)ZDnet

Mar 3, 2008

NEWS: Trendrr Makes Data Mashups A Breez

Trendrr Makes Data Mashups A Breeze

In our quest to provide comprehensive analysis of tech industry trends, most technology bloggers have become statistics junkies. To see what's popular we often rely on a bevy of metrics -- Google Trends, Technorati posts, Nielsen Buzzmetrics, Compete stats, Facebook friends, etc. The list goes on and on. But comparing those statistics and trying to grok a trend isn't always an easy task. A new site called Trendrr is aiming to make that task easier by allowing users to manipulate a growing number of publicly available data sets.

Trendrr currently offers up data from 17 different data sets -- and the site is always adding more. These are things like: stock charts, YouTube video plays, MySpace friends, comments, or profile views, Amazon sales rank, Google News mentions, etc. Users can also input custom data via the site's RESTful API or by hand. Users are allowed to track up to 20 data sets at a time.

STATS: Distribution of AdNet Use

Distribution of AdNet use among websites by monthly visitors

Ad tag calls from the domains were captured in Jan. ‘08 from Attributor’s crawling operations and joined with unique user data from Compete to determine market share numbers. 68 million domain universe. Thus, 1% is 600,000 sites.
Ed: Interesting analysis of smaller sites. Contradicts comScore findings.

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