The truth about traffic on the internet

Sometimes it takes the mainstream media to come out and tell the truth: the Internet is over.

When I was at Microsoft, I used to get 200,000 hits when Slashdot linked to me. Now, traffic on the Internet is way down. The Daring Fireball post “A point-by-point debunking of Richard Scoobie’s latest bullshit claim, written with a mixed feeling of nausea, pity and resignation” (now deleted) didn’t drive any traffic to my great videos at all – Computers & Accessories, Microsoft.

Part of the problem is that people don’t link to the original source of a story. I hate people who don’t link properly.

But the hot trend here is that the real action now happens over SMS and closed social networking systems. No-one follows a link when Doc Searls points out that I am wrong to suggest that Microsoft has released .NET under the GPL and is using it to build the next release of Windows, which will be a video-based social network rather than an operating system.

And yet, on Facebook, I have had 86 people send me a pina colada on Happy Hour today alone.

That proves that blogs are dying. Nobody blogs about my videos any more – because after being overwhelmed by the richness of the content, text alone seems too humdrum by comparison. (Wait until you see my upcoming vlog where J Allard defends the Zune’s touchpad for 24 hours straight!)

Some food for thought for the haters there.

Talking of haters, I think this guy is making fun of me. Who would be so lame to do a copycat of Fake Steve based in a dying medium? He should at least have video.


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In Web 2.0, mass murder doesn’t have to mean mass media

Wow, it’s been a while!

I’ve been really busy cutting our last three videos down into a six hour “highlights” package for those of you who are too lazy to watch the full thing.

I have to address what Xeni has sensibly called the first Web 2.0 mass murderer. I mean, mailing your Quicktime videos to a TV station – what could epitomise the Web 2.0 age more than that? This must be the first time ever that a murderer has communicated through the media!

Just had to give kudos to my pals Dave Winer
and Doc Searls.

Dave points out that the evil old-media gatekeepers at NBC are wrong not to release Cho’s video package in full. “It’s 2007, and it’s a decentralized world. We should all get a chance to see what’s on those videos” he says.

(Also congrats to Boing Boing for showing the power of social media by identifying some Flickr pictures of the killer in record time. Admittedly it turned out to be a totally different guy, but how were they supposed to know? Asians look alike. The old dead media, with its outmoded “accountability” and “fact-checking” would never have been able to point the finger so rapidly. Except maybe Geraldo.)

In the Web 2.0 age, it’s just wrong for a TV station not to run the video manifesto of a mass killer. As Doc says, “many eyes make all bugs shallow”. As far as I have seen, nobody has been suggesting measures that might stop these kind of tragedies in future, but if enough people see Cho’s vlog, I’m sure someone will suggest a “patch” and everyone will quickly come to an agreement to implement it.

We have to see the videos in full to work out a solution, though. 3 minutes of clips isn’t enough. Perhaps in one of the unreleased segments, Cho gives a vital clue to addressing the problem. “I’m concerned that I’m not getting enough selenium in my diet”, perhaps. Or maybe there’s something we could have done with RSS and Twitter to address his “stalking” problems.

In a way I am a victim of the same evil media filtering that Dave identifies. When I release a two hour video about a hot new papercraft startup, people complain that it’s “boring” and want me to cut it down. But that’s just another form of censorship.

As Doc points out, there could be bad consequences to releasing the killer’s manifesto in full. Like encouraging copycat spree killings. And allowing a dead murderer to slander and blame his victims from beyond the grave, thus increasing the pain of survivors and bereaved families. But I think my right to watch the videos I want to watch, in full, trumps the rights of a few whiny college kids.

I think the shooting-vlog sector is going to hockey-stick this semester. The clunky process of recording Quicktimes and sending them off to NBC is going to put off less tech-savvy killers – I’m sure a bright startup could capture that valuable content by making it easier for murderers to get their content online. Maybe with real-time helmet cam footage over 3G? Next week I hope to bring you an exclusive video interview with the founder of the first startup in this area, SpreeTube. I’m very excited!

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Naked, greedy conversations

Blogs are all about conversations. Like the conversation I had with my wife this morning about how we’re going to pay for that third HDTV set.

That’s why I’ve signed up with PayPerPost. At $15 a post, I’ll have that baby paid off by summer.

Yes, I’m a capitalist. If you don’t agree with me on this, I guess that makes you a communist. And Stalin killed more people than Hitler. Is that what you want?

As a good capitalist the only option I have is to maximise income. PayPerPost has lots of VC money, and until they go the way of all those other sleazy “micro-marketing” firms,  I need to get my share.

Oh yeah, here’s the disclosure bit:

*This post brought to you by PayPerPost, but all opinions are mine!


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PitchFest 07

Sitting here at PitchFest 07, I’ve just seen a demo that literally transcends language. The firm, Vodbodge, combines video clips, shopping, SMS and those little yellow highlight effects in a way that is totally cool, and I can’t explain.

Aren’t you glad you have me as your on-the-spot reporter?

Later I will upload a long video about Vodbodge, but I guess none of you ungrateful scum will watch it ‘cos it’s not “edited”. The Telegraph found a new excuse for not mentioning my Vista videoit hadn’t come out when they wrote their article. That’s the MSM for ya.

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Thanks Gunjian

Unrelatedly, I just learned that Gunjian Electric & Whalebone Corporation signed up for another sponsorship of the ScoobieCast. This means I can bring you another thousand hours of totally independent and unbiased tech conversations.

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Wow! Gunjian’s hard disk division has come up with something game-changing.

It’s built around a 10Gb hard disk – which means it’s already 2Gb up on the iPhone (j/k Steve – good to see that you link, unlike Engadget, which doesn’t link).

But it also has an LED to tell you when the disk is full, and a serial port. Gunjian has released APIs to allow other companies to integrate their devices with the KEITH (Kool Endogenous Information & Tips Handler).

Weight is only 4.2kg, and battery life is 4-6 hours of a single D cell.

My favourite feature: it can sense fear.

This short 49 minute taster is the pre-pre-announcement video, so it’s mainly some PR guy from Gunjian explaining how the company is going to use KEITH to position its hard drives as a “trusted budget luxury lifestyle” brand, and only 39 seconds of the actual product. The pre-announcement video, with a slightly longer demo of KEITH, won’t be posted until after it’s unveiled at the JamGadge conference next week.

Still, beats reading some rewritten press release, huh?

I’ve had enough of this whole debate about whether everyone should link to all of my posts or just some of them. Let’s bury the hatchet, OK guys?

Not everyone hates me. I’ve received some kind words from my friends Jonathan Sanderson (“He’d post a whole lot less if he edited out the dull bits” – thanks man!) and John Gruber, who points out this hilarious parody blog.

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Introducing “Drinking with Dorks”

There’s a new sort of social networking event that a few people have tipped me off about. It’ s kind of like LinkedIn, except that you meet offline in small groups of about 6 people. You eat food and drink alcohol while talking IRL about the latest great Gunjian technology.

I think this “dinner party” network could be the next Orkut.

Check out the first episode of “Drinking with Dorks”, my new socianetwovodcast! This episode features Randy Socom, CEO-in-chief of NetWonkNews, Steve Llagerub, the man who invented the “refresh button” and is now acting CEO of RefreshWorks, and Mary Carey, meta-CEO of Dibble.

Dibble was only founded three days ago and today it announced a new business model: to monetise the ecosystem around the “dinner party” meme by selling advertising on spoons and placemats, so Mary had some particularly interesting things to say. You can’t really hear them because I found that leaving the microphone next to the candles isn’t such a good idea. Hey, when it comes to recording video, we’re all still learning.

If you want short “YouTube”-style videos, this is not for you, but there are brief moments of intelligible conversation about 34 minutes in, and later at the 3hr49 mark. I think Steve really nails why Google is in so much trouble lately.

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