ArchiveFebruary 2014

Friday 5 — 2.28.2014


Pew released a report on the Web at 25 — and how Americans have adopted and are affected by the internet usage. A full 87% of us now use the internet, 90% have cell phones, and 58% have smartphones. And as you can see from the chart above, many report it would be very hard to give some of these behaviors up. Interesting to see that while 71% of Americans online report using Facebook, and...

5 lessons from Buzzfeed @ Harvard


Today, BuzzFeed editor-in-chief Ben Smith spoke to fellows, students, and a few curious onlookers at Harvard’s Shorenstein Center (Storify recap). Listen to the full audio above; below are my top five takeaways from the discussion: Headlines definitely matter — and if you’re writing headlines for catchy listicles, be sure to lead with the number. Headlines at BuzzFeed are a...

Alone together, or shared space?


Pew Internet reports that 25% of married or partnered adults who text have texted their partner when they were both home together. Is this a good or a bad development? The answer may well depend on the circumstance. Social behaviors vary dramatically by age cohort. danah boyd’s new book focuses on social media behaviors of teens — and how they may differ from their parents’...

Friday 5 — 2.21.2014


Facebook forked over $19 billion for WhatsApp, and the internet is full of articles explaining why. Among the most compelling is Buzzfeed’s take that WhatsApp posed a significant threat. WhatsApp is growing fast globally, consumes a great deal of young users’ smartphone time, and fills that critical “staying in touch” niche that Facebook would like to own. The visual...

On jazz hands and ad networks


Everybody is very enamored by Google’s self-driving cars, you know, Google making glasses. That’s all jazz hands. It’s a big, huge distraction. They’re an advertising network. They’re putting a 25 to 50 percent advertising tax on everything created in the world. That’s all their doing. It’s a huge ad network. They’re going to subsume all advertising into their network.   And that’s what...

Friday 5 — 2.14.2014


Does it seem like you’re spending more time on your smartphone than you used to? If you’re anything like the U.S. digital consumers in this Nielsen survey, you’re spending 9 hours and 52 minutes more each month. Smartphone time spent on social media rose rapidly, with 37% year-over-year growth in use of social media apps. Download the report for useful updates on mobile, social...

On death and online culture


As Facebook knows, a digital world raises new problems. To be sure, Facebook made a mistake not considering enough the mortality of those who would use their product. But to be fair, when have inventors or designers ever had to before? Think of other classic American brands—Ford or Coca-Cola, for example—whose products are not so intimately linked with their customers’ fates. Cokes and cars are...

Leaning too far back: Women in stock photography


A few weeks back, LinkedIn sent me a recommended influencer post about perceptions of employee underachievement. The topic didn’t grab me, but the photo sure did. Stock photos are generally risible, with staged pictures of men in suits earnestly shaking hands and flawlessly diverse executive teams ruminating in boardrooms. But something about this image I found particularly disquieting. The...

Friday 5 — 2.7.2014


Is your app addictive enough to make money? Eric Reiss lists eighteen elements to consider when gauging your app’s ability to engage and retain users. If you’re trying to see what an addictive app looks like, you could do a lot worse than Flappy Bird. This difficult game manages somehow to infuriate and retain users, raking in $50K in revenue per day in the process. QuizUp, the...

Digital in the enterprise


Thanks to Vala Afshar and Michael Krigsman for inviting me to participate in a CXO Talk: Conversations About Innovation in the Enterprise.
Vala wrote up our conversation about digital transformation and teams, content strategy, and the (erstwhile?) role of a CDO over on the Huffington Post.

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