Dirty Hack

I don’t normally cross post on Rooster’s Rail and The Global Geek Podcast Blog, but I think this story is worthy for both audiences. But I will change it a bit here to suit. There is one part that you will find amusing.

So there we were Knightwise and myself recording episode #025 of The Global Geek Podcast. We record the show over Skype as he is in Belgium and I am in Australia. Everything was going very well and we were into the seventh Tech News Story and… nothing. The whole house was plunged into darkness, we lost power here at home.

I am thinking that I don’t know how long I have lost the power for, I had better find a way to contact Knightwise and let him know what was going on. Think Rooster think! Ah got it, ring his mobile… Damn it, his mobile number is on the computer which at this point in time is unserviceable due to lack of juice.

So I ring my brother on my mobile phone, the home phone runs on power so that was out as well. James dude, do me a favour and ring Knightwise on Skype and let him know that I have lost power. Lucky I remembered Knightwise’s Skype id as James had to add him to his contact list. Enter the dirty hack:

Dirty Phone Hack

That does not look pretty and believe me the sound was worse. So the hand you see is my brother’s (AKA: Air Bridge). The phone you see is his cordless home phone, it is on “speaker”. The Skype call that you might be able to see on the screen is a call from James’ computer to Knightwise. Contact with Knightwise established by one very dirty hack. Communicating was not too bad we could talk to each other but occasionally the Air Bridge had to decode what was said. Plus, I did not have to pay for a mobile phone call to Belgium (Woot!).

To top it all off we lost the recording.

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He said What?!

Peter Chernin, CEO of MySpace’s parent company, Newscorp unbelievably said this early this week:

“If you look at virtually any Web 2.0 application, whether its YouTube, whether it’s Flickr, whether it’s Photobucket or any of the next-generation Web applications, almost all of them are really driven off the back of MySpace.”

Needless to say that I think he might have his head up his arse. This is the most self indulgent and ignorant, self righteous things I have ever heard a CEO say… well in recent memory anyway. Clearly said without knowledge or forethought.

So what these companies would be nothing without MySpace? I don’t think so, they are successful because the users have decided to support them, as is the case with MySpace. That support can be fickle as well. So just be careful about saying just how good you think you might be. Tomorrow you not be on the “hot” list. Especially if users think you are full of your own self importance, they tend not to like that very much.

In my opinion I think that MySapce is popular with the demographic that they appeal to and that’s it. Right now that is the biggest driving force of any company, market, trend and dollars; the young, hip, trendy youth market. I think it has very little to offer the adult serious blogger or tech-type person. Although some will visit to see what is on offer and maybe have a space to get exposure. This is a powerful market force for lots of obvious reasons and the source of the confidence in Peter Chernin’s comment. They can also turn on you like a rabbid dog. The YoYo was hot once too. They have to concentrate on how they keep this audience interested, not on how they are going to global domination wielding this possibly temporary power that can be here today and gone tomorrow.

These comments were made with reference to the fact that if MySpace were to build a similar service to YouTube for example and make the videos accessible to MySpace users to “embed” in their pages then they would use that instead of YouTube. I think that is a reach. Convincing users to drop what is “cool” or the “service of choice” in favour of an alternative is a tough job. They would want to be offering a much better service or something to make them stand out. I don’t think they can do that. Plus you have to crack the brand loyalty of users to YouTube, good luck mate!

CEO Tip Number 1: engage brain then speak otherwise you will look stupid. Stupid.