Fake Steve Jobs

I just wandered over to allthingsd.com to see what time the Steve Jobs shindig kicks off and saw this:

Apparently the WSJ artist couldn’t get ahold of Jobs for a sitting and instead drew the barista down the street who “really looks a lot like Steve.”

How do you spell chutzpah?

If nothing else, the folks driving the pay-wallification of The Times of London and The Sunday Times have the courage of their convictions, recently making it clear, PaidContent,org reports, that not only are they putting up the wall, but they’re also planning to turn search engines away.

That means the sites – which are fine, focused products - could be passing up their greatest customer acquisition opportunity: their content itself. Non-members who reach a story page are greeted by a Times+ sign-up and login overlay, obscuring the article; there’s no taster, no excerpt and no way that anyone will find those articles via search sites.

In poker, they call that “all in.”

Mutter to local TV: You’re next


Alan Mutter has a message for local TV stations: What happened to newspapers is probably about to happen to you next.

Once it becomes as easy and satisfying to view a YouTube video on your 50-inch television as it is to watch “Two and a Half Men,” audiences will fragment to the point that local broadcasters will not be able to attract large quantities of viewers for a particular program at a finite point in time.

This will shatter the mass-advertising model that has served local broadcasters so well since the advent of the medium that some stations in the best of times were able to pocket pre-tax profits as high as 50 cents for every dollar of advertising they sold. While profits nowadays are running at a more modest 20% to 30%, they are well ahead of the pre-tax earnings of such corporate behemoths as Wal-Mart and Exxon.

The challenge to the lucrative local broadcasting model will have a direct impact on the quality, such as it is, of local television news – the medium that approximately 70% of the population counts as its primary source for news. This is a matter of great concern, for which no clear solution is evident.

The quote comes from the first of two posts adapted from testimony Mutter is scheduled to present at a Media Ownership Workshop being conducted Friday by the Federal Communications Commission at Stanford University. Definitely worth reading.

Photo: Creative Commons licensed from flickr user Tjflex2.

“Don’t tell anyone,” but it’s easy to search everyone’s Facebook status


In theory, I’m okay with Facebook being more open to the world. But that assumes that the people using it realize they’re likely talking in public, not just among their friends.

Thanks to openbook, you can now see how that’s working out, by searching Facebook statuses of lots of people – not just the people in your circle of friends.

The site defaults to a random-rotation of potentially embarrassing phrases (“don’t tell anyone,” “playing hooky,” “rectal exam”), but I’m sure you can come up with better on your own.