News, Social

Off to see The Mann

Today I’m off to see the mann – René Obermann, CEO of Deutsche Telekom (DTAG) – with the DNA Digital guys in Bonn. There we will hopefully get to workshop interesting challenges of the Enterprise2.0.

What would you talk about? I’d like to know! Feel free to leave a comment on the blog or drop me a line on twitter.

Disclaimer: I work for a company that does business with DTAG. However, I'm not getting paid nor am I instructed to write this blog or to participate in the Enterprise2.0 discussion.

News, Social

DNA Digital Workshop – Hello again, Berlin!

I’m attending a workshop (German) held by DNA Digital, an initiative to “connect the Internet generation with CEOs”.  Let’s find out what that means. I’ll keep you posted on how the workshop went.

For the third time in less than a month I find myself in the city of Berlin again. Life is but a long line of coincidences.. .

Disclaimer: I work for a company that does business with DTAG. However, I'm not getting paid nor am I instructed to write this blog or to participate in the Enterprise2.0 discussion.

News, Rants, Social

Twitter muzzled?

UPDATE: Chris Anderson (@TEDchris) was right when he told me that this change would be for the better back in 2009. I accept now in hindsight that my initial reaction was perhaps mostly nostalgic about a future that couldn’t technically and socially exist. As the amount of my followers keept rising, it was becoming self-evident that the changes were needed. Nevertheless, I still feel some of the initial feeling of exciting serendipitous chaos that made Twitter very special back then is gone. I guess I’m still a bit nostalgic. What do you think?

Original post below:

This morning I read a blog post over at Read Write Web (RWW) that caught me by surprise. I recommend you read it too. It seems that twitter has removed what I consider an essential feature in their latest update.

I was so surprised that I wrote a comment in the emotional heat of the moment over at RWW and I decided to republish it here later on. My initial thoughts were as follows:

I’m quite appalled that twitter seems to me to be self confident – if not almost smirk – with removing a setting that potentially alters the mechanics of conversing and discovering on twitter on a fundamental level; In other words making twitter less like, well, twitter.

I find the idea of not listening to 2% of their user base quite grand. Did they do the maths? That’s not a tiny amount of people, is it? My guess is, that there are a lot of the early twitter adopters and evangelists in those 2% too.

Another bet of mine is that most of those 2% are most certainly not confused by the @ reply ‘system’. It’s inaccurate, not threaded and tracked – but who cares? It’s ‘the twitter way’ and some learned to live comfortably with it.

I’m also willing to bet that a much higher percentage was living under the illusion that they were getting every single public tweet from the people they were following and didn’t know that twitter was censoring and deciding what they could and could not see.

As to the topic of context, I personally find parts of the 2008 twitter blog post referred to in the comments over at RWW completely out of touch.

From the post:
“1) You should feel free to @reply people and not worry about it being out of context to some of your followers. In general, they won’t see it.”

To me, twitter is not instant messaging or email. To me, one of the most important aspects about twitter is enabling discovery, stumbling upon new interesting people, sparking curiosity, reading different perspectives. Why take all that away? I’m flabbergasted. Speechless.

Would it hurt too much to just leave the [promiscuous] setting as default OFF, but there to turn ON for the users who are comfortable with it?

Are there economical incentives involving either business plans or prohibitive cost-benefit ratios precluding it? If so, twitter should be up front and transparent about it.

Please bring ‘promiscuous’ back. I don’t want to have to subscribe to the RSS feed of every single user that I’m following in my reader of choice to get the complete unadulterated twitter stream (even from users that may have blocked me).


Business Ideas, Social

Evil ReTweet business plan from hell

Here’s an idea that occurred to me as I accidentally clicked a retweeted and shortened link on twitter this morning. The thing is, the link opened the target address in a frame (think Google image search) with a rather obnoxious self-advertising header. Eeeeeew!

Needless to say, I was rather put off by the whole experience. There are several services doing this and quite some people using them. To protect the names of the guilty I’ll not name the services or the tweep perps.

However, it got me thinking; What if an Amazon Affiliate-like approach would be implemented to an url shortening service like the one mentioned above? You’d sign up to the url shortening service and you’d get ‘rewarded’ for retweeting urls shortened by the service – or rather for spewing advertisement.

I’ve tried to illustrate it in glorious monochrome below, using Balsamiq Mockups and about 29 seconds.

Technically, the url could contain a hash – or whatever – containing User ID, Original URL, AD served, etc, etc, etc.

I’d like to add that personally, I don’t think such a service would survive. That is to say, I like to think that it can’t. However, such an evil scheme may already exist.

Do you know of any such services? If not, you read it here first and I want my blood money! ;)

Update (04.05.2009):

It seems like has implemented something along these lines now. Hey! What about my cut?!


The Cluetrain Manifesto nine years later; the Internet answers back

Lately, I re-read the Cluetrain Manifesto for the first time in about nine years. (I would recommend you to read it again too. Technology specifics aside, it’s as relevant and inspiring as ever.)

Kudos to Geir Bækholt for introducing me to it back in the days.

But people of earth, what I really wanted to tell you about is dog food and the conversation nine years on.

Reading it again made me want to order copies of the German translation of the Cluetrain for the German speaking/reading upper management folks I do wonderful business with. Much to my dismay, I found out that the German version is for some reason out of print [Out of print? Seriously, I thought we were over this medieval phase of media?]. Drat!

I thus turned to twitter – as you do – to vent my disappointment and asking for further clues to a possible procurement of a German translation.

One of the four authors of the Cluetrain Manifesto (Rick Levine, Christopher Locke, Doc Searls and David Weinberger – all on twitter) actually caught wind of my gay banter:

Rick Levine then looked up the German publisher and told me how to proceed.

I’ll let that stand as a confirmation of Rick, the Cluetrain Manifesto and last perhaps not least twitter.

And people wonder why I love the social Internet…