Astroturfing

A new term that I find amusing: astroturfing – paying for the appearance of a “grassroots” movement (via Larry O’Brien; credit The Guardian‘s Oliver Burkeman).

From the RSS postal service:

  • From Alex Kipman‘s blog: It only takes one irresponsible employee one blog entry to undo years of messaging and position from marketing. How much or little transparency to promote through such vehicles as weblogs is an important question all companies should be addressing? What amounts to excessive transparency? Robert Scoble and others are asking these questions and trying to answer them, too. More transparency improves the conversation. That improves the feedback loop. That brings us all better products and fewer misunderstandings.
  • Via Scoble: Mark Bernstein makes a good case for getting rid of comments and trackbacks. I especially like “less delay between initial impression and publication [i.e. thought] encourages violent reaction [i.e. flames].”
  • Via Red Herring: a couple of interesting points from Tom Malone‘s Supernova 2004 conference keynote: The rapid decrease in the cost of digital communications has created a revolutionary system in which people in business can make decisions without direction from above; and The challenge in coming decades will be in designing corporations for access to information and freedom to make decisions. To the degree we are successful, we will be able to take advantage of much more of the creativity, motivation and loyalty of the people in our organizations. Fast Company offers a partial transcript of this keynote here.
  • There’s another interesting post from the Supernova 2004 conference by Red Herring here on The Network Is People panel. For example: Pure edge architectures are great, but they have to integrate with centralized systems if they are going to achieve their greater business value. You have to have a relationship with the people who own access to server, a relationship to power, in order to reshape the way people work. Fast Company offers a partial transcript of this panel here as well as several other partial conference transcripts from here–look under June 24 and June 25 (the days of the conference itself).
  • The RSS Wishlist
  • Why Did We [a VC firm] Invest in Newsgator?
  • Technorati tracks three million blogs – interesting graphs on weblog growth
  • Full-text feeds make me happy too – they enable offline user experiences (part of the smart client vision)
  • RSS Bandit now has a product roadmap (intro)
  • Ad-based-but-free feeds and fee-based-but-ad-free feeds: a sign of RSS maturity, or a sign of the times?
  • A reflection of reality and not a sign of a revolution – what all blogs individually and in a collection should aim to be (i.e. have integrity; don’t manufacture transparency)
  • SnipSnap – thanks to Robin Good for the pointer…I wonder how easy it would be to port this Java weblog+wiki (bliki) to C#/.NET…? The potential for simultaneous output to XHTML and RSS/Atom is especially appealing to me. I already exclusive publish this site in XHTML but have been struggling since the beginning to add RSS/Atom support into my by-hand workflow. I like the recent feature in support of URL-based installation–a smart clien?!–minus its requiring full access to my local machine and network as stated by Java Web Start (bug!). Time to launch WinCVS… As Robin mentions, Amy Gahran has several posts on the subject of blikis (e.g. here). I was first introduced to this term by Martin Fowler.
  • OutlookMT – a tool that enables drag and drop blog publishing from Outlook 2003
  • XHTML validator to RSS widget – yet another approach I want to investigate to giving my site a feed…

On a final note for today, it will be interesting to see how the recent email storage wars play out among competitors such as Google (Gmail – 1 GB storage), Microsoft (Hotmail – 250 MB storage, 10 MB message size) and Yahoo! (Y!mail – 100 MB storage, 10 MB message size). Although the press seems to be focused on the amount of storage freely offered, what’s more interesting to me is how that storage is supported and focused–storage as a simply a means to particular ends. What will these ends become?

-Craig
http://craigrandall.net/
@craigsmusings