Henry Jenkins on The Moral Economy of Web 2.0

MIT Convergence Culture guru Henry Jenkins posts a 3-part essay on the cultural politics of Web 2.0 with colleague Joshua Green (together, Jenkins and Green organize the Futures of Entertainment conferences).

This essay focuses on the resulting reworking of the "moral economy" that shapes the relations between producers and consumers. "Moral economy" refers to the social expectations, emotional investments, and cultural transactions which create a shared understanding between all participants within an economic exchange. The moral economy which governed old media companies has broken down and there are conflicting expectations about what new relationships should look like. The risks for companies are high, since alienated consumers have other options for accessing media content. The risks for consumers are equally high, since legal sanctions can stifle the emerging participatory culture.

And I highly recommend reading it if you do any kind of marketing that benefits from engagement, content creation, and community. So that pretty much means all of you.

Part 1. Part 2. Part 3.

Happy Friday.

Toldja So. Antigua Threatens to OK Piracy.

I wrote about the possibility of this happening back in December. I said it would happen, and it is happening.

Antigua, because of the US's pressure on the WTO to make online poker illegal, is threatening to legalize piracy if a swift decision to end the dispute isn't reached.

Read more about it here and here.

This is the beginning of a veritable you-know-what-storm if Antigua goes ahead with their threat.

Free Ad Serving? Bring It On.

With Google's acquisition of DoubleClick now official, Saul Hansell discusses the potential for DoubleClick's Dart for Advertisers (DFA) product to move to a free model, due to it's acquisition by Google.

I say, bring it on.

This would be a shrewd move by Google towards getting the world migrated over to its ad serving platform.

While I'm not holding my breath for my ad serving bills to stop rolling in any time soon, my hope is that at the very least, the industry will be able to get a free, basic DFA, then maybe add-ons for additional services. That will force moves by companies like Atlas and 24/7 to reassess their models, and hopefully bring down costs across the industry.

The major ad serving companies are now all owned by major corporations (DoubleClick:Google; Atlas:Microsoft, 24/7:WPP). Ad serving is starting to appear more and more like it's a value-add every day. Lets just hope the technology doesn't stop improving for the sake of making it free, or even just less expensive. Without improved ad serving, we don't get improved metrics.

Bring on the free. But don't stop improvin'.

GTA IV Teaser Trailer: Gone Too Far?

Is it me, or does this trailer by Rockstar Games for Grand Theft Auto IV go too far in its sarcastic portrayal of police officers?

Maybe its that I'm an NYC native. Maybe it's that I was here on Sept. 11. Maybe I saw what true heroes are made of.

I normally have a thick skin and can laugh at just about anything. But put it in the context of trying to sell me something, and I'm not sure it can work.

If people start speaking up about this, I could see them not necessarily being represented as Jack Thompson-supporting loonies.

Rockstar, I'm usualy with you. But I don't think I am on this one.

Is Advertising Bad For The Web?

It's a provocative headline, but there's a great piece in this week's Advertising Age by Matthew Creamer that features the POVs of folks like Jakob Nielsen on whether or not the web is the place to be buying ad space.

Jakob Nielsen: 'The basic point about the web is that it is not an advertising medium. The web is not a selling medium;it is a buying medium. It is user controlled, so the user controls, the user experiences.'

I'd say that there are many places for ads on the web. But where this argument really does seem to have its strength is within the world of social media, and social networks in particular, where banner ads seem to go relatively unnoticed.

Remember, it's a provocative piece. But it's a great way to start a conversation about the right conversations to have on the web.

Read it here.

See Me At Ad Age

2A579978-5311-4453-8B8A-51F6C5C84BA7.jpgMy next speaking gig should be a doozy.

I'll be appearing at Advertising Age's Digital Marketing Conference this Tuesday, 3/18 on the following panel:

11:30am — Talking Talent
There's a new crop of stars in town who've grown their celebrity via MySpace pages, YouTube channels and videos gone viral. And now, of course, they're celebrity spokespeople.

Moderator: John Battelle, Founder/Chairman/CEO, Federated Media


Nathan Coyle, Digital Agent, Creative Artists Agency

Ian Schafer, CEO, Deep Focus

Robert B. Stone, Director of Interactive & Emerging Media, Cadbury Schweppes Americas Beverages

Damon Wayans, Founder, WayoutTV.com

This should be a fantastic panel, one that will address issues about online video and the talent that plays such a big role in its success. Brands, publishers, and talent will stand to learn a great deal from the varied perspectives on the panel.

Act now, because this thing is almost completely sold out, people.

My Kneejerk Reaction to Friendfeed.

42C9D211-95C2-43CE-AD90-FA5481F65696.jpg Lots of folks are blogging about Friendfeed today.

While I do see that there could be a niche for a feed/update/sharing aggregator, this just feels a tad overwhelming. It's a bit like being in a room full of people where there are hundreds of conversations going on, and I can't pay attention to just one.

As a professional, I need something that's easier on the eyes, more compact. Not a long list of things that I have to sort through. This just doesn't do it for me. In its current state, it feels a bit like TMI (too much information). Maybe it's not for me, per se. Maybe it's more for students and kids. Time will tell.

With that said, it does have potential. Perhaps an open API, or some clever uses of its RSS feeds could make this more useful. It just seems like a collector right now. What I think it needs is to get smart. I'd want it to prioritize my closest friends' feeds for me. Show me the ones that are most important. Learn from my clicks.

Those are my two cents.

by Ian Schafer