At the Crossroads of Media, Culture and Technology

GeekWire Summit: Crystal Balls and Awe

Geekwire is here

Geekwire is here

This year’s GeekWire Summit, kicked off by cofounders John Cook and Todd Bishop, covered the major bases in tech world news and trends. In a world where a slump in innovation means becoming insignificant, it’s not surprising that most panels were entitled “The future of…”. The recurring themes that underscored the day were the swiftly approaching domination of mobile devices, particularly tablets, and oh yes – are there any software developers out there? Because the panelists seemed almost to be scanning the crowd in search of them.

The morning began with Cook and Bishop sitting down with Otto Berkes, CTO of HBO to talk about why HBO has done so well to date (leading with compelling content, and having the right technology to deliver it at the right price point, all in the right package, according to Berkes), and whether HBO might change its model to allow free viewing by cable subscribers. Berkes’ carefully worded answer to that question boiled down to “No”. Berkes’ thoughts on HBO’s platform focus led the trend of the day: it’s all about tablets.

“60% of our users are mobile,” he said, and he is hedging his guess about whether one will rise to dominate the market. “We want to be on all the popular platforms going forward,” he said. Continue reading


Technology Events in the Northwest: A Fall Feast

Summer is showing no sign of packing up and leaving anytime soon weather wise, but the fall conference circuit is already underway.

Visitors to this space have recently read about PAX, the attendant controversy, and Bumbershoot. We’re expecting somewhat more sedate behavior at today’s Geekwire conference and Century Link’s Social Media Lunch. More sedate – probably. Rife with networking and learning opportunities – the predicted attendance of both events indicates that many people think so.

Geekwire is here

Geekwire is here

Under the leadership of Todd Bishop and John Cook, Geekwire brings tech and business leaders together.  Panels will run the gamut, from technology to the future of retail, with panelists as diverse as organic farm CEO Michael Smith to Jane Park, founder of eCommerce nail salon chain Julep.

While that full-day conference is happening, Century Link will be hosting its annual (and this year, sold-out) social media lunch at the Root Sports Lounge in Century Link Field. The informal networking opportunity

Those undaunted by traveling farther afield will find in Mashable’s technology conference list the perfect excuse to buy that plane ticket – although it includes the odd web-based conference, such as the Useful Social Media/Adobe free joint presentation in San Francisco.  At the other end of the spectrum is the Social Media Strategy Summit, also in SF.

We’ve also been hearing about LavaCon, billed as a “multimedia publishing and content strategy” training opportunity  coming up in Portland in late October.

Watch this space for updates about coverage of some of these events, including today’s Geekwire summit.


NFL Team- What’s in a Name? Everything.

Training camp 2013 photo by Mobilus

Training camp 2013 photo by Mobilus

At the beginning of just about every football season there is discussion and protest over the name of the Washington Redskins. This year is no different, but we can hope for a different outcome than we have seen in years past.

The Washington football team is not the only one with racial connotations (looking at you Atlanta Braves, Cleveland Indians, Chicago Blackhawks) but the “Redskins” are the focus of the issue right now.

Some have argued that historically “redskin” was actually used by Native Americans as a self identifier. You can read more about the history of the word here.

Okay, so it used to be used in a certain way, but do you know what? That still doesn’t give anyone a pass on using a racial term and a logo of a distinct ethnic group to depict a sporting team. Beyond that, as words in any language do, over time the meaning has changed and in about the 1900s it went from being an identifier to being a derogatory term. Today, it is a derogatory term. Continue reading


Criminal Confession: Art or Social Media Campaign?

Original Image Sources: "I Killed a Man" video; Vintage Apology Line poster art.

Original Image Sources: “I Killed a Man” video; Vintage Apology Line poster art.

In a new YouTube video, a young man confesses to being drunk the night he caused a fatal traffic accident. What is his motivation for posting the video? How does it relate to a famous media art project of the 1980s that presaged the coming digital era? A deadly coincidence between the two underscores the discomfort we feel when the worlds of criminal confession and media self-publishing intersect.

The Apology Project

In 1980, a provocative art project using a key piece of social sharing technology was launched. Artist Allan Bridge posted flyers around New York, advertising a new service: The Apology Project.

“Attention criminals,” those first notices read, “You have wronged people. It is to people that you must apologize, not to the state, not to God. Get your misdeeds of your chest! Call Apology.” Continue reading


Viral Video #2: Not Your Average Wedding

Flip the Media Viral Video pic-02

We bring you two viral videos this Friday.  Contrast the viral Vine below with this happy ending.

People are endlessly surprising, and as weddings involve people, we ask if any wedding ever really “average”.  But this one goes over the top – in a very fun way.  See why it’s gone viral in Britain, where apparently, vicars are not as stuffy as they’re often depicted.

 

 


Viral Video: Juvenile Spat Caught On Camera

I love vine, I do it a lot, but this vine user has taken things to a new level. After the below vine video was posted on Reddit, Khoaliti skyrocketed to he internet fame kingdom. Is this the future? Let’s hope not.

 

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PAX Prime and the Dickwolves Problem

pax_prime_headerI want to be able to tell you all the wonderful things I saw and did at PAX Prime over the weekend, because really there were many amazing and wonderful things. That being said, I feel it would be wrong to talk about any of that before writing about the what happened at the Penny Arcade Q&A.

Let’s talk about Mike Krahulik and the dickwolves comment he made at the Q&A yesterday, let’s talk about the crowd’s response, the whole thing. I am specifically going to be talking about what happened yesterday and not the continuing problem of rape culture perpetuation in the gaming community because that topic will be a post unto itself. (which I am sure I will write in the near future.) Continue reading


Viral Video: Not Your Average Wedding

Flip the Media Viral Video pic-02

We bring you two viral videos this Friday.  Contrast the viral Vine above with this happy ending.

People are endlessly surprising, and as weddings involve people, we ask if any wedding ever really “average”.  But this one goes over the top – in a very fun way.  See why it’s gone viral in Britain, where apparently, vicars are not as stuffy as they’re often depicted.