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This comment section was interesting and informative before it turned to petty religion-bashing. This forum isn't the right one to start providing "evidence" for or against the LDS church, it's to discuss a cultural phenomenon that is that church for one reason or another pumping out entrepreneurs. Let's leave the theology elsewhere.
1 year, 2 months ago on The Book of Mormon: Why the world’s most capitalist religion breeds so many entrepreneurs
It's worth noting that a lot of the apps that Facebook "killed off" (iLike, Social Reader, RockYou, Zynga games, etc.) really did detract from the user experience. Let's take Washington Post's Social Reader as a case study. You had to authorize the app in order to read the articles (that were often loaded with linkbait-y titles), and any time youdidread (or click on) an article it automatically shared it with all of your Facebook friends. Zynga is another example; I'm sure I wasn't the only one constantly bombarded with invites to Whateverville. I had to unfriend some people to avoid them, because there was no way to turn them off.
It felt like these apps had found a hack that was taking advantage of the platform, but really this is just the result of the platform being poorly designed itself. The selling point for developers who picked up on it was, "You can make everyone who uses you spam all of their Facebook friends." Unfortunately spam, especially when it's coming from your friends, works like a charm. Facebook eventually had to stop allowing that before it let itself turn into a MySpace filled with little widgets.
Facebook's real problem wasn't just that it wanted to own everything itself, but that it didn't build the platform the right way in the first place.
1 year, 2 months ago on Move fast, break things: The sad story of Platform, Facebook’s gigantic missed opportunity
Another advantage of the Internet is that it can organize power in ways that have never been utilized before. Take Google, for example - really it's an ingenious way for people to accidentally give authority based on merit. Each link counts as a vote. Not every new website has the same ability to rink as wikipedia, but that's because the Internet has collectively granted Wikipedia that authority (at least according to Google).
1 year, 6 months ago on The case for organized power
That probably leaves Spotify exactly where Google Drive and Microsoft SkyDrive left Dropbox: Just fine and still dominant.
1 year, 7 months ago on YouTube and Apple are launching streaming services. Where does that leave Spotify?
Excellent article - it would have been nice to see time metrics in your "x million views" numbers (i.e. 1,000,000 uniques per month? Per year?) but I figured it out.
Basically the economics just suck if you're a freelancer, especially as writing and publishing becomes commoditized. Flying someone to live somewhere for a while so they can really get a handle on something is just really hard to do (as Paul Carr highlighted so well yesterday). My guess would be in years to come we will be much more likely to make use of the people already on the ground or with an expertise in something instead of hiring somebody to learn about something to write about it. Of course, with the case in point being North Korea, that's not really an option, but that seems to be an outlier to me.
1 year, 7 months ago on How much is a piece of content worth?
Wow. This is the single best explanation of (dissertation on?) journalism in an Internet age I have ever read. Thank you, @paulcarr
1 year, 7 months ago on The future of journalism: It’s time to pick a side
@sarahcuda It's worth noting that the Deseret News (Utah) is also owned by the larger media body KSL, who has an online classifieds offering that is more compelling than Craigslist in Utah. Since classified ads were one of the biggest sources of revenue for newspapers, it certainly doesn't hurt to have held onto that revenue stream.
1 year, 8 months ago on New hope for newspapers that’s really more depressing than anything
1 year, 9 months ago on On the overzealous prosecution of Aaron Swartz
This is an excellent article - thank you. I hope this trend continues - how much better served would the world be if the brightest minds dedicated themselves to changing the world instead of trading pieces of paper?
1 year, 9 months ago on Finance lost. Tech won. Here’s why…
I paid a Bangladeshi guy to create 1500 gmail accounts for me (don't ask), and he was too lazy to uncheck that box. Those account numbers mean about as much as email addresses (nothing).
1 year, 10 months ago on On Google+ user numbers
@drewmeyers @DouglasCrets I agree with the notion of most having to be around startups for a while in order to understand what it takes, but calling it a "BA" in Startups makes me cringe -- too close to the idea of how traditional education works.
1 year, 10 months ago on We know accelerators are headed for a shakeout — but do they?
We've been building a software that solves a lot of the problems you mention for some time now; there's incredible content out there that no one sees. It needs to be aggregated and sorted. It's not public yet, but if you'd like to see it, ping me (firstname.lastname@example.org) or sign up (http://grasswire.com)
1 year, 11 months ago on Could Sandy be Instagram’s big citizen journalism moment?
This is the greatest thing I have ever read
2 years ago on Shutterstock’s road to IPO (told through awful Shutterstock images)
Spotify has the business model everyone keeps talking about with regard to Twitter and Facebook - the whole, "Why can't I pay $x and opt out of the ads?"
The interesting piece is that they seem to have figured out the subscription model more quickly than they have been able to monetize on ad sales. I pay the subscription every month, and it's among the best $10 I'll spend. I actually don't even use iTunes on my phone anymore.
2 years ago on Spotify’s Best Chance at Beating the Digital Streaming “Suicide Pact” Is With Ads
@bnkausik @ranjanxroy To be fair, newspapers still operate in largely the same way they did when Franklin published the Courant (the first newspaper). Ads were designed to pay for the cost of printing, but were never viewed as a form of monetization.
But I don't like the way TV was just brushed over in this argument. "People used DVRs to skip ads" never became a widespread thing, and while there is more reality TV and more cheaply produced TV, but the industry is still enormous. Talk to any large ad buyer, if you told them demand generation advertising is dead they would laugh at you.
2 years, 1 month ago on What Ails Groupon, Yahoo, and Facebook: “Demand Generation” Advertising
@Francisco Dao @sarahlacy If I wrote a response, would you read it?
2 years, 2 months ago on The Ultimate Productivity Tool
Valid points, but I have to say some of the best advice I've ever received and some of the best connections I've ever made were from times when I didn't see an exact purpose as to why I needed to go to lunch with that guy. There's nothing wrong with giving back to the community and being a part of other people's work.
I would go even further than saying it's a bundling problem. It's a product problem in general -- what the media wants to offer is generally vastly different than what consumers want to/are willing to consume.
2 years, 2 months ago on Magazines Don’t Have a Digital Problem, They Have a Bundling Problem
@retired blogger dude I think it goes like this - if your content is really that poor, people won't read it. If people don't read your content, you don't sell to Time Warner for $200M. The whole, "the market decides" thing.
2 years, 2 months ago on BleacherReport and HuffPo: How the Only Two Nine-Figure Blog Exits Used Crowds Wisely
@bgoldberg Good to hear it first-hand, that makes sense. Thanks so much for the response, and congratulations on the acquisition. I've been following BR for a long time - hopefully I'll run into you in SF eventually.
This is a fascinating take on it. I put a lot of weight in the fact that Fred Harman not only had big hits in new media, but in (new) advertising as well. The two work hand-in-hand, and the fact that neither BR nor HuffPo have (to our knowledge) experienced issues with monetization is further evidence of how important it is to have an advertising + media player like Harman on the team.
And, might I note, Sarah, that I find it fascinating to read as you blog about the seeming demise and lack of feasibility of large exits with regard to tech blogs... on your tech blog?
There's something larger at play here -- what is important in this debate affects the whole Silicon Valley ecosystem. To what extent can pure advertising (even advertising as targeted as Facebook) support large companies? How profitable can having a whole lot of eyeballs on your platform be?
The Valley has operated for a long time under the assumption that if you have an absurd amount of users, you're set. This has proved to be profitable, but not $100 Billion in valuation profitable. Here's to hoping Facebook can continue to innovate and create a new form of monetization outside of failing Zynga.
2 years, 2 months ago on Facebook Needs New Revenue Streams, Fast
Not well known, but customer base apparently includes half of the fortune 500 and all of the ivy league universities...
2 years, 5 months ago on Big Data Indeed: Sequoia and Accel Pump $70 Million into Little Known Qualtrics
@William Franceschine In a post-JOBS act era having invested money in a startup won't mean anything. True VCs as we know tem today will have to show they're accredited or develop their own brand.
2 years, 5 months ago on The Winklevoss Twins Have Decided to Call Themselves VCs, Because That’s a Thing Anyone Can Do Now
@sarahlacy To be fair, anyone who would invest in FB at a 100b valuation I would be hesitant to take money from. But point taken.
@nathanielmott @JohnFrankel This is a joke, right? Forgive me for taking it too serious.
@JohnFrankel @arrington ... IS a VC
I would pay for this content.
2 years, 5 months ago on Roger McNamee on the New Web: “Everything That Mattered Over the Last Eight Years Won’t Matter Anymore”
So one of the important things about programs is the back-end code? Yawn.
2 years, 6 months ago on Back-End Engineers Are the Unsung Heroes of the Tech Industry
Saying big media is dying is like saying any big business will die. They probably won't die, but their current model doesn't represent the future. In all likelihood innovation will come the same way it always has, through entrepreneurship, and a few will hold out and become big media companies while the vast majority are bought out for high prices by the big companies. This is nothing new - innovation has to come from small teams willing to take a risk, and if successful the big teams will pay for it.
2 years, 6 months ago on It’s Time to Stop Talking About the Death of Big Media
I have to disagree, and think that the notion that ads are dying is largely overstated. Are they less effective than some would like? Certainly, but to say that, "Advertising, as it currently stands, is not going to work" is wrong, in my opinion. It is working for many, many, many companies.
2 years, 6 months ago on You Wanna Know How You Survive? You Get Sponsors.
There's no way. There's no freaking way.
2 years, 6 months ago on Oh. Wow.