Will Sullivan's guide to global mobile, tablet & emerging tech ideas

South by Southwest Web Awards; Gen Y narcissists; Online video–less artsy fartsy, more reporting please; Amazon’s social design; Are you bored?

Smell the coffee (image by Phil Dokas)

Wake up and smell the coffee
“Wake up! You haven’t got enough online users to worry about alienating them! You’ve got to make huge leaps just to become relevant online, particularly with the heaviest online users, those under 35”

Online video arguments (redux)
Good discussion on newspaper video here … I added this in the comments (regarding using contest entries as the model for how to do video): “I’m totally with Bryan on this one. Journalism needs less contests, less ego, less artsy epics and more relevant reporting.” I’m already growing weary of photographers turned videographers trying to be too artsy fartsy with every single video they produce. Photojournalists are not just artists, at least half of their title is journalist… Act like it. Three minutes of random “sights and sounds” on video doesn’t cut it. Respect your reader/viewer’s time.

South By Southwest Web Awards Winners
I’m extremely disappointed Arrested Development on MSN didn’t win.

News, Improved. The State of the News Media, Not.
Tim Porter’s back in action with his book coming this month! Now we gotta find Bob Cauthorn back in action.

Impossible is the opposite of possible
Hilarious video resume of Michael Cera (Georg Michael from Arrested Development). A spoof of some Yale nutjob. (Via Justin Gilken)

Reflecting pool: Are we REALLY that narcissistic?
Great round up on campus reactions around the country to a new book, “Generation Me” calling Generation Y narcissistic. The next book should be printed with a new cover and called “Digital Me” about bloggers and all their stupid opinions. (I’m 49 percent joking here.)

US: 250 papers to partner Monster for job classifieds
“Online jobs leader Monster Worldwide Inc. announced it was working with software company Adicio to supply classified advertising for some 250 US newspaper websites.”

The Dark Art of video compression
Koci rocks another tutorial.

Hundreds of American Newspapers Surrender.
I believe Lucas or Danny said something very similar to this… I’m sorry but I can’t seem to find it in my bookmarks, google or through quick search…  Lucas said it!

Pew Internet: Latinos Online
“Latinos comprise 14% of the U.S. adult population and about half of this growing group (56%) goes online. By comparison, 71% of non-Hispanic whites and 60% of non-Hispanic blacks use the internet.”

Newspapers: stop falling all over yourself for stupid media
At South by Southwest, cyberpunk technologist Bruce Sterling swings at this year’s huge push towards “stupid” media: Video. … Right the fuck on. (For anyone new to the site reading this, don’t get me wrong, I do support video/multimedia efforts. But traditional linear video is hardly exploiting the interactive possibilities of the net, at least not much more than a 100-inch print story. So don’t put all your eggs in one basket and expect your time-starved audience to sit through hours of video like they used to (ages ago) sit with the newspaper.)

10 Questions for Tom Kennedy (Via Seth Gitner)
“Narration/titling may be used to impart information but because the video will often be seen in combination with text stories as a single experience, a lot of the weight of presenting “facts” may be borne by accompanying text, freeing the video to focus on character exposition and contextual expression of the emotional truth of the story.”

GroundReport Launches
“ is a citizen journalism destination that enables anyone to publish articles, rate stories, build a personalized front page, create a free portfolio and earn a share of advertising revenues.”

Jay Rosen’s “Distributed Journalism” – Achenblog
AssignmentZero “It’s a pro-am thing. It’s a bit like Wikipedia-meets-Woodward-and-Bernstein. Rosen calls it ‘distributed journalism.'” (Via Romenesko)

Red EyeRedEye Introduces a Weekend Edition
“RedEye, Chicago’s free daily newspaper, announced today it will introduce a new weekend edition that will debut in early May.” It’ll be free delivery on Saturday.

The Roanoke Times Removes Database of Handgun Permit Holders
Roanoke posts, then pulls concealed carry permit database. More here.

Journalists of the World Unite–and Innovate
“The Readership Institute has done studies and finds that as a group newsroom cultures tend to be passive/ defensive or aggressive/defensive types, neither of which are conducive to change. So issue number one. Change your attitude. Become offensive and aggressive.”

USA Today Walks the Talk of Audience Involvement
Lengthy analysis of USA Today’s revamping and redesign

Content is king with online video
“The video isn’t perfect, but it’s a good example of how content is king when it comes to online video. Folks are willing to live with less than perfect quality when there is a compelling moment to be seen.”

NPR may lead fight against Internet radio royalty rate hike
“Sounds like NPR may be the first to take action against the recent massive increases in the royalties Internet radio stations are obligated to pay to performers of the music they play.

The Twitter on Twitter
Jack’s all up on Twitter. He even has a Knox News twitter feed.

Getty Images gets Scoopt
“Getty plans to fully integrate Scoopt into its organization and to distribute images captured by non-professionals alongside its current supply of pictures.”

The Real Heroes of Newspapers
“That future will belong to those who build it. Walking away isn’t the answer. Staying, working the problem, finding solutions, making hard choices, learning to think differently – those are the answers. And the people who do that are the real heroes of journalism.”

Seth Gitner on the Roanoke editor ad
Check out Seth’s mini angel on his shoulder … He’s becoming the Tony Robbins of multimedia storytelling!

How well are the “integrated newsrooms” working?
Very long but interesting post wrapping up how some newsrooms are changing.

24/7 Newsroom management principles for The Guardian and The Observer
“24/7 means we will publish material around the clock across seven days, rather than (as at present) for 16 hours a day across five days”

Why Simplicity Is the Key to Mastering Mobile Web
“It’s slow. It’s cumbersome. Still, the mobile web, now accessible to 70% of the nation’s 220 million cellphone users, literally offers the internet in the palm of a consumer’s hand”

Bored (image by Thomas HawkAre you bored?
Do people seriously have the time to get bored anymore? … Is that really possible anymore? I seriously can’t remember the last time I was bored since high school.

Eyetracking points the way to effective news article design
The blogosphere is buzzing about how dudes tend to look at other dude’s junk.

The Herald’s Money-Makers

Kids, the Internet, and the End of Privacy: The Greatest Generation Gap Since Rock and Roll
More about those crazy Gen Y kids.

IRE Conference notes, Vol. 5
Mark’s all over the IRE conference. Its more “webby.” This weekend was freaking filled with awesome conferences and concerts around the country!

Diversity and Consolidation: You Can’t Do Both
Findings: “* Female and minority-owned independent stations air more local news * Female-owned stations are more likely to employ female news directors”

State of the News Media 2007: Down in the Valley, with Lots of Company
“State of the News Media 2007, released today by the Project for Excellence in Journalism, reports that newspapers, cable television, network news and local television are all losing audience.”

An open post to newspaper execs and editors about video.
Hell yea! Rent a helicopter and drop this from the sky at your office.’s Social Design
16 social features!

NPPA Photojournalism Summit 2007
“The one training session you don’t want to miss” Full disclosure: I’m co-chairman with Seth Gitner setting up this shindig.


  1. “Photojournalists are not just artists, at least half of their title is journalist… Act like it. Three minutes of random “sights and sounds” on video doesn’t cut it. Respect your reader/viewer’s time.”—I hear you loud and clear and i’ll raise my fist as high as the next photoJOURNALIST but what do you say when those artsy-fartsy video pieces WAY out perform the journalistically sound ones? That’s gotta say soomething? right? Don’t get me wrong, i’m also not for, ‘just giv’em what they want’ but we are also living in the most visually sophisticated world EVER. Viewers reallyy seem to appreciated the artsy. If we want to keep readers, we need to feed them SOME of what they want and hope they look at the investigative journalism piece right next to the sights and sounds of their local downtown, right? with the newspaper, we were never able to track what people actually looked at. we just threw it all out there, world news, sports, entertainment, comics, games, etc. but now we can better see what the public comes to the website for….just a quick thought.

  2. Your blog is great. However, I can barely read your gray-on-slightly-darker-gray comments.

  3. Hey Richard!
    Yes, I definitely agree variety is important and we need to walk the line between journalists and Access Hollywood very carefully.

    Where I see that line being crossed is when there’s not even one basic interview or some sort of text to offer a little context to a video piece. I mean, Access Hollywood would at least do that… I think? (I haven’t watched that show in a while.)

    I’ve seen three projects from people I really respect this past week or so that were ‘sights and sounds’-esque and it just seems like a cop out. And I’m asking myself “where’s the beef?” Or at least the beef-flavored pressed meat product?

    I’m all about tracking stats and knowing your audience–No doubt that’s important! But we shouldn’t just judge a project’s success on web hits. Otherwise, it’s time we start opening porn sites because those get lots of hits, so readers must want them. … Although it seems some papers are already starting to do that:

    I’ve spoke before about how using hits as the guide for a projects success is a slippery slope We need to strike a balance. We shouldn’t swing from not focusing on what the audience demands to the polar opposite–where we only give them the shiny, sugary fluff, half naked chicks and American Idol ‘news updates.’

    Journalism is more than just making money, and while the times are hard, I hope people keep that in mind. (I’m not accusing you of this at all, SJM’s stuff rocks and is bringing a lot of papers into the new age … I’m just kinda ending on a general soapbox to the readers.)

    Thanks for reading and posting!

  4. Hey Mike!
    Thanks for posting. I’m in the process of making some tweaks for a full redesign/upgrade and the text colors are definitely on my list.

    Have a great day!

  5. “…whether those relationships be professional, sexual or both – which happens a lot.”


  6. The post about the Google ad system can probably be found here. I’ve written a lot about this topic because it’s going to become more important as Google gains successes.