The digital battle is getting serious but who is fighting and why?

Posted in collaboration, Community, Digital business, digital collaboration, Digital media, Digital news, innovation, IT and communication, Web 2.0 on April 5, 2013 by Geir Stene

Painting_Liberty Leading the PeopleIt’s the giants leading on the battle; it amazes me that the rest of us let them rule the ground alone.

It is all about power, owning the value chain and keeping / achieving profits. Who owns the production line ? Who have control over the infrastructure (path of delivery) and who has the strongest grip of the customers?

For some; helping people to improve their lives and decrease their sufferings and problems seems to be a necessary (but undesirable) cost aspect. No wonder people distrust whole countries, corporations and those who want to sell us yet another vacant argument.

Facebook is coming up with a mobile solution, but do not launch a cell phone. IPhone got behind in the innovation race. Kodak is bankrupt. Sony is losing money all over. Many newspapers tries to generate sufficient revenues by hiding behind firewalls. AT&T (and of course Telenor in Norway) are fighting too, they want the free ride of earning on others production of content. Media moguls are on the ground too, armed to their teeth with copyright arguments. North Korea and other nations are accused for running a cyber war. Most nations want some sort of control over the Internet, they say it’s due to fighting crime.

Confused? No need to be embarrassed. Most people are.

The digital revolution is really about who is producing value in the digital era and are able to deliver solutions to people’s problems and fulfilling their desires in the most benefitual way. It can be a revolution FOR the people, but then the people have to wake up.

The question is not about copyrights, VAT, or that the artists will not survive when everything becomes free. It is not about journalism or literature, storytelling, pictures and film as dying crafts. It is really about a new level of democracy, where the value is in delivering real value to people – the market.

For the media industry  it is important to understand this, and at the same time to understand that the real producers of added value (the artists, the storytellers, the journalists and so forth) need to get the fair share of the value produced!

Behind Facebooks new ”Graph search”

Posted in Community, Digital business, Digital media, innovation, IT and communication, Web 2.0 on January 16, 2013 by Geir Stene

TVscreen_wall_imageIt seems like people aren’t looking under the hood of what this new direction of Facebook really is all about.

What I’ve seen of reactions so far is concerned about the benefit for people searching (and the lack of benefit outside Facebook environment)Forbes is concerned about privacy in their article: “Facebook’s New Social Search”. [ ]

Forget privacy!
I believe that they aren’t looking closely enough. There is no battle of privacy. In fact that battle was lost before it started. Our governments (all over the world) have ensured that in all their new laws “against terrorism”. Forget privacy in the way we used to think about it.

Rather think transparency. And avoid using companies, and internet portals that refuses to be transparent about what they do.

What are they doing?
Google and Facebook are not trying to provide you with a more humane way of finding what you are looking for. They are not fighting over how personalization as the future of search should work.

They are battling to own your “social data”! They want to have as much knowledge about you, your friends and network, and your actions and interactions in any digital way you interact. They want this to profit from it. They want this in order to sell that social information about you to corporations. That enable them to present desired and needed commercial content to as where you are, when you need anything. None of them wants to be transparent!

Good or evil?
On the one hand this is great news, isn’t it? We finally get rid of spam, of disturbing and irritating commercials in our face. No more stupid “news letters”!

It’s a great idea to be presented by the great offer of a healthy lunch, just when you are hungry, and it’s right around the corner from where you stand. Isn’t it?

It’s great when your car breaks down on the highway, that the rescue car & the rental car is on its way, before you have to reach for your cell phone and start searching for the phone number to your insurance company, the rescue car and the rental company. You don’t have to call work and explain the delay or your spouse to complain to her, what shitty life you have.
That is already information delivered e.g. via Facebook status. Your friends and network knows, those who want to offer you help knows. That’s good – isn’t it?

The “evil enemy country” in the world has hacked into all systems and they also know what you think, what your actions are and what perfume you use, and more important, the credit card number and where/when used. Oh that’s maybe not so good, or is it?

What do you measure?

Posted in Digital business, Web 2.0 on December 20, 2012 by Geir Stene

20dec_imageIt is a digital measurement hysteria out there. Everything can be measured of course. But some people have some serious ‘connecting errors’ in their heads while establishing what to measure and how to define “success!

 

People establish metrics to define effect out of all kinds of things. It’s called SEO, SEM, Scorecard, Conversion Rate, ROI and I do not know what! Measurement has many names. The worst part is: It’s important! But …

For example, you want to measure how much time a user spend on your website. But is it necessarily great to spend a lot of time there? What if the users get their problems / meet their needs quickly? Is that a negative outcome? Measurements will only be of value if you know what you are going to use the answer you get for.

“If you do not know what to use the answers you get for – do not ask!”

Digital security

Posted in Digital business, IT and communication, Web 2.0 on December 19, 2012 by Geir Stene

19dec_image

Today we have the pleasure of Kai Roer (bio below) guest blogging on the subject of digital security.
2012 is almost over. Pickpockets ruin the x-mas shopping experience for those unfortunate enough two have not yet learned where two keep their wallets when in town.

 
Hoax ‘keep fooling people into spreading false information Wed. their social media profiles. Bank accounts are emptied – by yourself and by the criminals. Credit card companies makes fortunes, and hackers play around for Your Computer.
- They Thank God you do not know how to spot them!

Everything is as usual. And soon the candles are burning, gifts unwrapped and new possesions possessed. Like you, criminals enjoy this time of year too. Just like you, they know you will want to be a little more kind and a tiny bit more giving. Unlike you, they also know that your guard is down this time a year. And they are birds of prey. You are the prey.
New tools are around too.
Everything was better before, when the criminals were criminals, and they had to come around your house to burglar you. You knew immediately something were wrong when you saw someone lurking in the dark, spotting a victim.
Not so easy today.
When you log onto your online bank, who knows who are watching your every move – from within your computer. Waiting to whale you, moving all your savings two somewhere outside your reach, and well within theirs. And then your phone rings. Unknown number, some foreign country code. Could it be old aunt Olga? You answer, not realizing you are in for a huge phone bill due to the automatic call-back function.
Something never changes.
As you enjoy your meal, you smile when you imagine that young boy down in a third-world country, the one who can eat thanks to your monthly donations through the global aid-organization located in Nigeria. Everything seems legitimate, but would not it feel better if you checked it a little bit closer? Perhaps asked around a bit, or just googled two see if it really was for real? No, of course there is nothing wrong, and the payments are so small anyway. Besides, you have done this now for 12 months, what could possibly be wrong?

We are all Easily fooled. Not you, of course. The rest of us are.
If I had a list of 20,000 credit card numbers, I would not empty them. I would charge a few dollars Wed each card only. Enough two make a difference, and little enough to go unnoticed by the card holder. You may consider there be two check your bank and credit card statements a little extra during the holiday season. If there are discrepancies, my bet is some criminal have access to your banking details, I find it highly unlikely Santa Claus does.

Call your bank, sort it out.
While you are at it, you could also scan your computer for malware. But use the real scanners, not those fake ones.

Bio:
Kai Roer is an information security practitioner with a special skill for people. He is found and the senior partner of The Roer Group, serving clients around the world. He is a much sought after speaker and trainer, as well as a bestselling author of several books.
The post is an excerpt of his next book, to be launch in 2013. He Maintain a security blog that http://roer.com

 

Do you have the best business model online?

Posted in Digital business, IT and communication, Web 2.0 on December 19, 2012 by Geir Stene

18dec_imageMaybe your business was established before the internet existed?

It may not be the best model for a digital environment.

Its years back since you could define a business model and relax for a decade.

 

Perhaps it is wise to provide various products and services in different channels? Maybe you can reduce cost by changing distribution channels? Another way of charging for your services may increase your revenues, or enable you to grow faster?  If you lower prices would that increase sales volume? What options exist for added sales? How would partnerships increase your access to new markets?

When did you last do a evaluation of your business?  Business modeling canvas [http://www.businessmodelgeneration.com ] is a great and flexible tool for most kind of businesses. The development of network economy (digital economy) now happens so fast that it is crucial to continuously observant and make sure your business models are the most attractive one’s for you customers.

“You need to be quick in thoughts and even quicker in action”

People are tired of “Corporate Design”

Posted in 1, Digital business, Web 2.0 on December 19, 2012 by Geir Stene

17dec_imageThere are millions of boring websites with the stereotypes of visual imagery.  The visual content is more important than text content!

Increase your expectations from the professionals who help you and ask them to surprise you.

The web is important, but remember: “Mobile first” is vital for 2013. Mobile and tablet solutions have a long way to go before the design and user experience (UX) is fully explored.  Dare to play and explore – But remember, be relevant!

Do not remove attention from the core business.

“A picture tells more than a thousand words!”

The collective flow of money is in crowd funding!

Posted in collaboration, Community, Digital business, digital collaboration, innovation, IT and communication, Web 2.0 on December 16, 2012 by Geir Stene

16.dec_imageCrowd funding is still ‘hype’ for most industries, but you will hear lots about it next year, experts around the world tells us.

It started out with the music industry and according to this article from Wikipedia  it dates back to ca.1997. I’ll remind you that typical “donate option” at free software websites has been common for years and is also a kind of “retro perspective crowd funding

Till now crowd funding has been used mostly for creative projects (music, independent film, fine arts). We see that “new journalism / citizen journalism project have stated using this kind of funding.

Internet start-ups and other entrepreneurs are increasingly using crowd funding as a financial source. Even the US President Barack Obama embrace crowd funding by the “JOBS Act” that allows accredited investors to invest in equity crowd funding campaigns.

The skeptics will also tell us that crowd sourcing is risky, as criminals will use this phenomenon for creating frauds. I’m certain that is correct. Criminals have always used every possible way to cheat. Read THIS  from TIME magazine about the subject.

Not all kinds of project are suitable for crowd funding. The most obvious areas is project that is non-profit (charity), or where the profit motif is absence (arts) or that the project is somehow perceived as great for mankind.

That means that e.g. environmental- , citizen rights movements, job creating projects and so forth will be able to meet a collective support where crowd funding is a great opportunity to fund a project.

I believe that also more traditional businesses will attract  crowds for financial support, maybe even as a contra- reaction against  what is perceived as “cynical and greedy finance acrobats”.

“Look out for the crowd – there is power in the voice of the masses!”

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