Friday, March 03, 2006

Friday Odds and Ends

Herewith a posting with no central theme but which pretty closely resembles my ramblings around the Web this week.

* VP of the Technology Development group at Yahoo!, Bradley Horowitz, has started a blog. It's always interesting to read blogs written by senior people at companies, particularly well-known ones, and most especially interesting when that company has a major role in Libraryland. His first few posts have been most interesting. For example..."In a previous post, I mentioned our efforts around lowering barriers to entry for participation, i.e. empowering consumers with tools that transform them into creators. Tagging is perhaps the simplest and most direct example of how lowering a barrier to entry can drive and spur participation."

* No DRM on ebooks? The poster , John Scalzi, is a sci-fi author published by Tor Books. "No DRM? Really? Really really. Why? Allow me to quote Tor's Patrick Nielsen Hayden on this one:We've tested a lot of e-book waters, including various cockamamie schemes involving overpriced e-books laden with DRM.Oddly enough, a lot of those "books" didn't even sell enough copies to pay for their file-conversion costs. [snip] My information does not want to be free; it wants to pay my mortgage. But slapping DRM onto an e-book doesn't do a damn thing other than annoy people who buy the book online -- i.e., one's actual customers. The only possible way to make DRM work for e-books at all is to stop selling physical books, and even then it's doomed to failure. You can lock down the text, you can even lock down the computer (so, say, you can't take a screenshot of the page while the DRM-protected text is online). But you can't lock down people's eyeballs."

* An late 2005 article based on a conference presentation (pdf) very much related to our Perceptions report. "Gaining Mindshare and Timeshare: Marketing Public Libraries." It's housed in the E-LIS open archive.
Here's the abstract:
"This presentation is an examination of how the [Singapore] National Library Board had successfully gained market share by redefining its market space and remaking the image of libraries and librarians. Libraries were repositioned to gain mindshare and timeshare among Singaporeans, competing against the cinema, TV, video games and other leisure activities, becoming the Third Place after home and work for many."

* Online Publishers Association conference keynote, given by the CEO of Reuters, Tom Glocer. “If the user wants to be both author and editor, and technology is increasingly enabling this, what will be the role of the media company…?” He has three answers: Media companies will be a “seeder of clouds.” Live blogging from Jeff Jarvis at BuzzMachine. Rafat Ali at paidContent also covers: "Too much choices means not choosing at all...brands serve a filtering function. Choice means letting professionals do it, and sometimes the wisdom of crowds help us do it. If you lose the trust of your lose the audience." Rafat provides an audio link.
Definitely one of those items I suggest you read wearing your library lens.
UPDATE (3:45PM edt) Scott Karp at Publishing 2.0 has some carping to do about Mr. Glocer's speech. "Here’s what I think of this — Tom Glocer has fooled 2.0 advocates like Jeff Jarvis into thinking he’s drunk the Koolaid, but the truth is, he hasn’t. This is Media 1.1 at best, and it still represents a formlua for perpetuating the entrenchment of Old Media at the center."

And I'm off tomorrow to Nashville where I am on the Sunday program of the SirsiDynix Executive Conference (preceding their SuperConference). I'll be speaking about the data from the Perceptions report that pertains to respondents attending a postsecondary institution. Other speakers include Ernie Ingles, Jenny Levine, Pat Martin (who was one of our Symposium speakers at ALA MidWinter) Aaron Schmidt, Chris Sherman, Lee Rainie, and of course, Stephen Abram.

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