Tag - movies

Would you buy an Apple HDTV? Perhaps this will help you make up your mind …

We keep hearing rumours about an Apple HDTV that is not just yet another set-top box. That is more than the “hobby” that is AppleTV. And that embodies the awesomeness that a dying Steve Jobs promised biographer Walter Isaacson when saying “I’ve finally cracked it!”

In other words, a full-on flatscreen TV with Apple technology built-in. Theoretically, an Apple HDTV will be available later this year in time for the Christmas shopping season, or early next. This will be the biggest new hardware product for Apple since the iPad – and probably the most expensive.

Where there’s smoke, there’s probably fire. And there’s been a LOT of smoke about an Apple-branded HDTV. The 64-bit question is: would you buy it?

If this future product follows the pattern of the past, an Apple TV will be an interesting animal, with innovations others have introduced but Apple will have refined. And … a few features that other TV manufacturers don’t – and maybe can’t – have.

In the spirit of informed guessing, here’s what I think an Apple TV would include …


The hardware will be spectacular in appearance but not in specifications. Apple will have what is widely recognized as close to best-in class performance and hardware, but you will be able to find HDTVs with better specs.

In other words, don’t expect a retina display for your new 50″ Apple flatscreen.

That said, it will be simple, beautiful, and functional. Think glass and aluminum, not tacky black plastic. Yes, there will be a iSight-style camera, a very simple remote (maybe your iPhone, iPod Touch, or similar), and not too many ports (more on that later).


Here’s where it will get interesting. This is what will separate Apple TV from the pack, for good or bad.

  1. Visual interface
    Stunning, elegant, simple. Like the current AppleTV set-top box user interface, but further refined.
  2. Siri, Siri, Siri
    Say it, and Apple TV will find it, schedule it, record it, play it, buy it, tweet it, share it, send it. And that’s just the shows. Siri will also help you connect and configure and use all the other features and functionality. And manage your life, while taking dictation. Siri probably won’t make dinner, but it will order your pizza.
  3. PVR/DVR
    This is almost too simple and obvious to mention – nowhere near the level of Siri – but yes, Apple TV will be able to record, pause, rewind, and replay visual content. However, the PVR/DVR functionality will be not simply be based on the local recording of shows … it will integrate seamlessly and invisibly with iCloud (see below) so you never again run out of space on your TiVo.
  4. iOS … and apps
    The new Apple TV will almost certainly run iOS … ensuring that the 600,000 apps in the app store (one of Apple’s huge competitive advantages) can also run here. Think digital kids books on the big screen, Twitter running side-by-side with Jersey Shore, Facebook open while you co-watch the big game with your buddy deployed in Iran (oops, loose lips sink ships). And 550,000 other things that smart app designers dream up.


The content will be near enough complete to not make choosing Apple TV a hardship.

Won't need this ...

  1. TV
    The major networks will be players, plus many of the movie studios. Giving away ad-supported TV will be like the loss leader for networks: people who like a show can immediately purchase complete and anytime access, including perhaps priority availability of new episodes.
  2. Movies
    Eventually this will enable new models. Imagine watching a movie for free … for the first 30 minutes. Access to the final 60 is available for a small fee of $4.99.
  3. Netflix, etc.
    Via the apps mentioned above you’ll also have access to content networks such as Netflix, but they’ll be less easy to access and less integrated than Apple’s own TV and movie service.
TV content in the Apple TV world starts to undergo a revolutionary shift: it becomes more internet-like. While there still is a place for live shows, most content is stored and accessible on-demand. We see this happening already in places, but Apple TV will accelerate the trend and force the major entertainment companies to buy in or become irrelevant.


Apple TV will connect some dots. But it won’t connect everything, especially not dozens of legacy devices.

  1. Hardware
    Apple has never shied away from bold hardware decisions. No floppy in the first iMac, no Ethernet in the MacBook Air, no million options for component connectivity in the Apple TV. Forget component, forget 5 HDMI ports, forget a USB stick or card reader. Think a couple of HDMI ports to connect your home theatre system, if you insist on being so gauche as to connect such an unwieldy mass of componentry. But expect a preference to wireless connections and fewer ports.
  2. Your devices
    Speaking of wireless connections, AirPlay and other innovations to tie your small screens and your big screens together will be extended. You’ll send your videos to the big screen from your phone without having to make sure your set-top box is on, configured, the active source in your TV setup.
  3. Your content
    Your content on your Mac will be accessible here, but not so much because you’re connection your Mac to your TV as both are connected to the cloud (yeah, see below). That doesn’t just mean your photos and videos, as the current AppleTV set-top box does somewhat clunkily today … that means all your content. Your documents, your mail, your web bookmarks, if you still use those. In short: everything.
  4. Your communications
    Want to phone? Why not use FaceTime on your Apple TV? Want to email? Why not shoot a quick email while you’re watching Seinfeld reruns? Want to chat on Facebook? Pull up the app next to your content.


And finally, the biggest innovation, perhaps, besides Siri … which of course is empowered to do all it does via the capabilities of the cloud. Your Apple TV will be connected to iCloud. The cloud is the centre, and the attendant devices are simply peripherals, including your TV

And that, of course, is what will enable and undergird all the software and content and connectivity mentioned above.

So … the question remains … would you?

Image credits: Paz.ca, Biscuit SMLP

Get used to the spinning YouTube wheel of wait

I was trying to watch a short clip on YouTube today … this one, in fact. Unfortunately, it stuttered and stumbled like an aged man on a cobblestone path.

The problem? 1080P, streamed over an internet originally designed for bare, simple, small … text.

The solution, of course, is simple: take it down a notch or two. To, perhaps, “380P,” which must be a YouTube special as I haven’t seen it on any TVs in Best Buy lately.

I have broadband, as fast as I can get in my neighborhood, but I guess I’m not quite up to snuff. I wonder how many are? Things will change, of course, as they always do.

But the last mile moves slowly.

Forget TV Everywhere, How About Netflix Everywhere?

… streaming video comes with a much lower delivery cost than shipping discs. According to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings at NewTeeVee Live, the company spends about $600 million a year on postage for its mail-order business, but the cost of streaming a video title is much cheaper than delivering a DVD by mail — about 5 cents a gig for bandwidth — or about a nickel per movie.

via Forget TV Everywhere, How About Netflix Everywhere?.

Easily download YouTube movies via Safari

If you’re using Safari, there’s an easy way to download YouTube videos. Open the page with the movie and press Command-Option-A, which shows the Activity window. If you’re also loading other sites, you’ll see a list of them: scroll until you find the YouTube page and click on the arrow to show details about what is being loaded.

You will certainly notice an element whose size is over 0.5MB (most of the time, over 5MB). Double-click on it (even if it is still loading), and Safari will download it. When the download is over, navigate to the file in the Finder (which will probably be called get_video) and add the extension .flv to its name. Now you can play it with VLC or with QuickTime (only if you have Perian installed).

via Easily download YouTube movies via Safari – Mac OS X Hints.

Good morning Porto

The dogs are barking and the birds are singing. First light hasn’t yet hit Porto, Portugal today, but I’m awake, a victim of jet lag and an inability to sleep in spite of being dead tired.

Ah well … gives me a chance to catch up on my blogging!

I flew into Lisbon, Portugal yesterday, planning to take the train up the coast to Porto, where I’m attending an Intel eLearning conference. Unfortunately, the flight was delayed, causing me to miss the last train … so I had to rent a car, with interesting challenges:

At about 3AM local time I was finally 300 km farther north and in my Porto hotel room – ready to sleep about 4 hours and then get down to the conference, which is being held in the Alfandega, a converted riverside warehouse. Getting there in my rented car was a little enjoyable, too:

In any case, I’m here, the conference is great, and Porto is an amazing city. Here are just a few photos of things that caught my eye – hopefully there will be many more over the next few days:

Boavista buildings

Yellow gate

Porto hillside

WALL-E and Mac OS X

Did you catch the Mac start-up sounds in WALL-E?

Teresa and I took the kids to see WALL-E last night (great movie, paradigm-breaker, lots of fun). One particularly interesting part for long-time Mac users are the Mac start-up sounds that accompany WALL-E’s and EVE’s reboot cycles. Notcot has already noticed that EVE is an iPod of the future (can’t wait to get that incredible laser attachment) but you never would have guess that the rusty, clunky WALL-E runs Mac OS X.

There weren’t wholesale signs of recognition among the crowd in the theatre that I could recognize, but I’m sure that the levels will rise in future years …

Baffled. Utterly baffled.

How much did you pay the music industry for the record player you bought 30 years ago? What percentage of your 15-year-old tape deck’s cost went to the music companies? And how much did the RIAA get when you bought your new Bose speakers?A big fat zero, obviously.Which is why I’m so utterly baffled by comments like this:

Zucker also revealed his company had asked for a cut of iPod sales – though the company receives no dividend from sales of record or CD players.”Apple sold millions of dollars worth of hardware off the back of our content and made a lot of money,” he said. “They did not want to share in what they were making off the hardware or allow us to adjust pricing.”

Almost. Literally. Unbelievable.What can you expect, I guess, from an industry that sues its customers, cheats its stars, eats its young talent for lunch, and is generally a disgusting, manipulative, and corrupting influence on popular culture.What a zero.

Apple’s Sept. 5 iPod Announcement: iPod, iPhone, iPDA, iComputer, iMobile Computing

Apple’s scheduled a Steptember 5th special event: “the beat goes on.”It’s obviously about iPods. My guess is that Apple’s now ready to take the next step. More to the point, the marketplace is finally ready for Apple to release the next evolution in iPod: mobile computing.You already see it in iPhone. And we know that OS X is underpinning future iPods.iPods have been carrying our calendars and notes for years. But it’s always been the sideshow, the off-off-Broadway down-the-lane-to-the-left non-attraction.I think the new iPods are going to take a huge leap in functionality. iPhone’s seamless reading of PDFs, Microsoft Office documents, and more will be part of the iPod experience.It’ll still be the entertainment hub – music, movies, podcasts – that it is. But it’s going to take the next step to a mobile computing platform that includes some of what we currently think of as “business” functionality and some of what we think of as “consumer” functionality – especially games.It would not shock me if concurrent with this unveiling of the new iPod we have an “iSDK,” a software development kit for iPhone and iPod.You read it hear first.

Thumbs up, thumbs down: obligatory post-Jobs-keynote post

I want the new iMac.
I want the new iPhoto.
I want the new iMovie.
I want the new GarageBand.
I want the new Keynote.
I want the new Numbers.
I’m not really impressed with iWeb.
Not too sure about .Mac yet.
I don’t really have a need for Pages – Word is good.

Best new iPhoto feature
Better organization of photos. Events is just brilliant … we have 14,000 photos and they’re just a complete blur. Events makes sense, and it’ll be a major enhancements. I called my wife down for that chunk of the demo, and it passed her keenly tuned BS filters. She even said “cool” a few times.

Best new iMovie features
Movie library just like photo library: one of those things that is obvious after Apple does it. Creating a movie in minutes: very needed, and very awesome.

Still needed: easier podcasting
I still think Apple needs a better podcasting tool. GarageBand is not the obvious place to go for podcasting, and it’s still not super simple and easy there, AFAIK.

Skookumchuck Rapids

We’re currently on BC’s Sunshine Coast taking a week’s holiday. A couple of days ago we took a two-hour hike to Skookumchuck Narrows, which is where the tidal flow into a huge basin is constricted through a narrow passage and can exceed 30 km/hr.

Really cool rapids and standing waves … which the kayakers enjoy:

Save Mac screencasts to .swf

I’ve been searching for a long, long time for a way to save screencasts made on a Mac to Flash. Snapz Pro is an excellent screencast-creating tool, but saves to a QuickTime movie. Flash is more widely available and least likely to have compatability problems.

Today I saw Jing, which looks very promising. It lets you create screencasts (as well as annotated screen captures, and a Mac version was just announced.

I’ve downloaded it, and will try it out, then update this post with my thoughts. Something I’m thinking already: wouldn’t it be cool it if did annotated screencasts!

One interesting thing: screen captures and screencasts are automatically uploaded to screencasts.com, where you can share it with anyone you wish. I don’t know much about it yet, but you can imagine the possibilities of a social network built up around screencasts – sort of like Flickr and photos, YouTube and videos, and so on. Intriguing!

New iLife: better camcorder compatibility

Camcorder compatibility is a major problem for iMovie users these days. If you haven’t heard or seen that, check out the comments on this post.

Many, many, many camcorders available right now, especially the new hard drive-based versions, will not work with iMovie. They record in low-quality MPEG-2, which combines the audio and video into one datastream. iMovie only works with DV camcorders or hard disk camcorders that record to MPEG-4, a higher-quality format that keeps the audio and video separate – enabling future editing.

There are workarounds (see above link) but they are time-consuming, costly, and not foolproof.

There are rumors that iLife is ready for an upgrade soon, perhaps even before the next version of Mac OS X comes out. It had better include an updated iMovie with built-in capability to handle MPEG-2, because it’s getting hard to find camcorders that are Mac-compatible.

Frankly, it’s hard to believe this is a problem that Apple has not yet addressed: imagine if iPhoto only worked with 5-6 cameras.

Apple needs to fix this quickly … or at the very least, provide an actual, specific list – with model numbers – of camcorders that work with Mac OS X and iMovie, instead of this no-help help page.

Clipblast: well that sucked

If Scoble says it’s good, it’s usually worth a look. So when Scoble says that ClipBlast is a “killer video search engine”, I thought I’d check it out.

One thing I’ve been looking for lately is video footage of Alexander Ovechkin’s lying-on-the-ice backhander goal from last year. We’re talking ice-hockey, in case you’re wondering.

Here’s what ClipBlast gives me:


That contrasts rather poorly with plain old Google:

google video search

The first two results are direct links to the video; the other results are directly related.

Not very “killer” to me.

[tags] scoble, video, search, clipblast, google, hockey, john koetsier [/tags]

Microsoft oPhone

Now this is how to respond to your competition:

(Doesn’t change the fact that I think iPhone is going to rock, but it’s funny, well-done, and … it’s got me listening.)

[tags] iphone, ophone, microsoft, apple, marketing, youtube, john koetsier, pr [/tags]

Sony camcorder & Mac OS X: not happy together?

Yesterday I bought a new camcorder – the Sony DCR-SR82 with a 60 GB hard drive. Today I shot some video, and tonight I tried to hook it up to my Mac and play in iMovie HD.

No such luck.

  1. Sony wants you to use their proprietary software … which is Windows only
  2. Sony provides a sort of a dock for this camera, which you are then supposed to connect to your computer – there’s no real USB output on this camera
  3. iMovie HD doesn’t recognize that a camcorder is attached, and won’t import any video from it
  4. The Mac finder can see the camera via disk mode, and I can see my movie clips in QuickTime format … but I can’t open them. They’re “muxed,” meaning that the audio and video are mixed together and QuickTime can’t open them
  5. Well, actually QuickTime can open them … if I spring for a $20 plug-in to QuickTime. Hrm … do I look stupid? Shouldn’t QuickTime just come with this needed component in the first time? Isn’t this the zen of Mac we’re talking about here … stuff just works?
  6. But even if QuickTime can open them after I pay extortion, iMovie HD will still not like me very much … iMovie HD won’t import, play, or edit muxed files

This is just wrong. OK, there’s only one course of action:

  1. Return crappy camcorder
  2. Buy new camcorder with better outputs and Mac compatibility
  3. Write nasty blog post about this hassle (check!)

To be completely frank, being on a Mac should mean that I never have to think of or even hear something so esoteric as “muxed video.” That’s what Apple engineers are paid for.

To be completely george, Sony is smoking something powerful if they think I’m going to change my computer to work with their camera. Not bloody likely.

They just lost a customer.

[tags] apple, mac os x, mac, sony, DCR-SR82, incompatible, muxed, iMovie, john koetsier [/tags]

Paddle to the Amazon documentary

Chris Forde, a documentary filmmaker, is doing a movie on Paddle to the Amazon … the longest canoe journey ever.

I’m interested in this because I read and reviewed the book Paddle to the Amazon, which is the amazing story of Don Starkell and his son Dana, who paddled from their home in Winnipeg, Manitoba, to Belém, Brazil … all in an open-top canoe, and Chris commented on that post.

Looking forward to seeing it!

[tags] paddle to the amazon, canoe, chris forde, don starkell, john koetsier, documentary, film, movie [/tags]

Snakes on a plane (on a plane)

OK, so I finally watched Snakes on a Plane … on an airplane.

The guy next to me saw that I had a laptop and pulled out a stack of movies. Since he offered the DVD, I could hardly refuse and keep my geek cred.

The movie did pretty much suck, unfortunately. But it did allow me to learn one very cool thing: you can hot-swap the battery on an Apple laptop.

I knew I was running out of juice about 3 hours into the flight and 90 minutes into Snakes … so I closed the lid to go to sleep, flipped the ‘Book over, took the battery out, stuck my spare in … and voila: another 3 hours of electrical goodness.


[tags] soap, snakes on a plane, airplane, powerbook, hot swap, movie, john koetsier [/tags]

A day at Mount Baker

I took the day off today and we spent the day at Mount Baker. Tubing, playing, feeding the birds … absolutely gorgeous:


Here’s a short video that I took while tubing … following Gabrielle down the hill:

[tags] mount baker, tubing, john koetsier [/tags]

Panasonic: lying about 1080p?

Panasonic has great tech gear, including excellent plasma screens. I’ve been considering buying one, and just today got a brochure directly from Panasonic on their plasmas.

Only problem?

They claim their TH-42PX60 model is 1080p. More precisely, their actual claim is “1080p digital processing for next-generation video sources.” The same claim is on the Canadian Panasonic website, referring to all of Pannie’s TH models.

However, the actual resolution of all the TH models is nowhere near 1920 x 1080 … the resolution that defines what “full HD” or 1080p actually means.

The closest is the 58″ TV, and that only has a 1366 x 768 resolution. The 42″ model is only 1024 x 768 … not even 720p, never mind 1080p.

This is either completely false advertising or very deceptive. The claim that they’re making seems to be stating that the TV is 1080p-compatible. On closer examination, of course, it simply says that the digital processing is 1080p … not that the display technology is 1080p.

I don’t think too many people will notice that. Seeing 1080p in the marketing, they’ll assume they’re getting a 1920 x 1080 plasma.

And that’s simply not true.

[tags] panasonic, plasma, deceptive, HD, HDTV, john koetsier [/tags]


So Aidan wanted to watch The Lord of the Rings.

I said no, it’s too scary for 3-year olds. He disagreed, saying that he would not be scared. “I’m tough!” he declared. Teresa backed me up, telling Aidan that there were lots of parts in LOTR that she was even scared by.

He thought for a second. “But I could wear sunglasses!”

(Gabrielle forced me to blog this.)

[tags] kids, movies, LOTR, john koetsier [/tags]

Small biz blogging: why, how, when, where

Yesterday I met Joe Laudenbach, a Bellingham, WA realtor who is wondering how blogging might be something he could use in his business. As I prepped for the meeting, I jotted down some thoughts on how blogging will fit into his business.

Note: my goal was not to get him blogging, but to give him information that will help him make an informed decision whether or not he wants to start.

Why to blog

  1. Better SEO
    Because blogs are more frequently updated, they’re a major benefit to your site’s search engine optimization … the factors that help you rank higher in search engine results pages. 
  2. More interesting site
    A blog is usually much more interesting than a website … it’s not corporate, it delivers content in quick hits, it’s more accessible … 
  3. More human face to potential clients
    Building on the “not corporate” theme, a blog is where your personality comes through – which is attractive (unless you’re Attila the Hun) 
  4. Learn and develop more as a person and as a realtor
    I learn more from blogging than just about anything else. Simply the process of thinking and writing and writing and listening and linking makes me much more consciously aware of trends and opportunities. The same is true for realtors or virtually any occupation, I believe. 
  5. Creative outlet
    People who blog regularly come to love blogging as a creative outlet. And I don’t believe there’s a single person alive who isn’t creative to some degree, in some way. Feeding this impulse has personal and professional benefits. 
  6. Contacts, conversations, communication
    Through blogging I’ve had email contact with Guy Kawasaki, Seth Godin, and many other major, well-known technology, business, and marketing leaders. They’ve made me smarter. Plus, I’ve had many more contacts with many more people who aren’t so well known … and that’s had even greater benefits. The same can be true for real estate agents or any professional/business people. Jobs, work contacts, and just plain interesting people: blogging can bring all that. It has for me.

Why not to blog

  1. If you can’t write
    Don’t get me wrong. You don’t have to be Hemmingway. But if you absolutely cannot string 2 words together intelligibly, forget it. Find some other way to engage your clients. 
  2. If you won’t keep it up
    Don’t start if you won’t keep it up. Few things are more pathetic than an orphaned blog. However, don’t get too worried, either. One post a week is not ideal, but it’s perfectly fine for many, many professionals. 
  3. If you’re just marketing yourself
    If your blog is only going to be about how your company and you are incredibly, stunningly great (not to mention handsome and wealthy) forget it. No-one’s going to read it – one Paris Hilton is enough, thank you very much. 
  4. If you’re looking for a quick fix marketing hit
    Blogging isn’t a quick fix solution. It’s about telling stories and developing relationships, and those don’t form overnight. Even the blogosphere success stories such as Thomas Mahon blogged for months and months without seeing major results. The good news: all your work is always paying dividends. Old blog posts never die, they just keep attracting hits. 
  5. If you’re not comfortable being authentic, real, and non-corporate
    Don’t be a stuffed shirt – let your hair down and be real. If you can’t tolerate the slightest mistake, if you can’t speak with anything other than the traditional marcom voice: forget it. It’s boring. It’s just advertising … and people are more adblind now than they’ve ever been.

What to blog about
Note: these are tailored for Joe, who’s a real estate agent. But they’re adaptable to different situations.

  1. Why people move to Bellingham/Whatcom county
    There’s probably 10 or 15 blog posts right here … as many as there are reasons. 
  2. What areas are great for kids|seniors|adults
    Another 5-7 posts … 
  3. Things to do in Bellingham
  4. Seasonal events
    If you do to a harvest festival, blog it. Christmas candlelight parade? Blog it. 
  5. House-hunting tips
    Keep it to one tip per blog posts … there’s probably an indefinite number of tips here. Organize them in a category so that visitors can see them all. 
  6. Top ten house-hunting gotchas
    I know I’d love to know what to watch out for when moving … and I’m probably searching for this type of information when I’m about to move, too. 
  7. Things you realize AFTER you move in
    Wouldn’t we all like to have known this – about a month before moving in. 
  8. Stressless moving

How to blog

  1. Intentional keywords
    Be intentional about the keywords you use. Know what people will be searching for when they’re looking to find a home in Whatcom County, WA. Niche it out to the max if you want to rank in search engines, and make sure you use those keywords in titles and posts. 
  2. Regularly (at least once a week)
    As mentioned above, don’t make an orphan out of your blog. 
  3. Naturally
    When you’re blogging, you’re a person. Not a company. Talk to people who are also persons as you would talk to someone on the street. Anything else is disrespectful, stuffy, and annoying. 
  4. Interview people
    Interview key people in your community. This is a great way to expand your circle of contacts, blog about interesting valuable topics, and grow your readership. 
  5. Talk to clients
    Clients will give you all the blog fodder you need, if you just ask.

Other things to consider

  1. Other social media
    Over time, as you become established in your blog and comfortable with the technology, why not explore other forms of social media? Upload a house video or a neighborhood drive-through to YouTube. Then post it to your blog. Or … 
  2. Podcasts
    Create a couple of podcasts so that people can hear your voice. This can really give people a sense of who you are and that they know you.

These are a few of the suggestions I had for Joe. I hope that they’re applicable to whatever situations you’re in, whether you’re a small business blogger, a corporate blogger, or a social media consultant. I’d love any feedback you might have, positive or negative.

Questions/opportunties? Looking for help in your social media adventure? Let me know.

Yes, it blends!

Scoble has already linked to this so the whole world probably knows, but I just can’t resist. This is absolutely perfect 100% genuine beautiful shiny social media marketing in all its amateurish grainy goodness:

What’s so perfect about it?

It’s short, remarkable in a they-did-that!?! type of way, is relevant to the company’s products, builds/reinforces the brand, isn’t too contrived, is well-executed but clearly unprofessional (which is good), and doesn’t try to do too much.

[tags] blender, social, media, marketing, john koetsier [/tags]

Holy freaking mother: stop the blog widget insanity

How much blog bling is too much?

Context: I was just at A VC – a blog by Fred Wilson, a New York venture capitalist that I follow from time to time.

He has about 5 million widgets and doodads hanging off his blog. He’s even worse, if possible, than Matthew Ingram.

Let me count. In the left sidebar Fred’s got:

  1. A picture
  2. Feedblitz RSS subscription form
  3. Yahoo! search widget
  4. Assorted other Fred Wilson RSS feeds
  5. My Blog Community photo widget
  6. Gotham Gal’s Stuff
  7. Podcasts he listens to
  8. Amazon music widget with about 15 albums in it
  9. tourb.us concert widget
  10. Streampad My Music widget
  11. Last.fm music widget
  12. iTunes music widget
  13. Shopcasting widget from ThisNext with about 6 products and full descriptions
  14. Alacra store search widget
  15. Blog categories
  16. Blog archives
  17. Blog about
  18. Blog stats
  19. Various links: axis of evil
  20. Fred’s social networks
  21. Facebook widget
  22. LinkedIn widget
  23. Some other links

In the right sidebar, not to be outdone, he’s got:

  1. Sitepal voice message widget
  2. Personality profile link (what a shock, he’s not high on aesthetics)
  3. Federated Media (FM) publishing banner ad (skyscraper format)
  4. Flickr widget
  5. Wallstrip video widget
  6. Shakeshack widget
  7. More FM ads
  8. VC Feedburner network widget
  9. WordofBlog widget
  10. Ad for another of his blogs
  11. Del.icio.us linkroll widget with about 20 recent links, including brief descriptions
  12. Indeed.com job posting “jobroll” widget
  13. Another Indeed.com widget, this one focusing on salaries in NY
  14. Blogroll with about a hundred blogs in it
  15. Another shopcasting widget from ThisNext with about 10 products, pictures, and descriptions in it
  16. Recent searches widget
  17. Contextual text link ads from Yahoo!
  18. Contextual text link ads from Google (could be against AdSense terms & conditions if Yahoo! is also being used – I think it is, actually)
  19. Recent posts

As I said earlier: holy freaking mother. Stop the insanity!

Dangerous lawyers: YouTube & TechCrunch

Lawyers working for web companies are like Dick Cheney out hunting: liable to shoot their best friends in the face.

For a perfect example, see this TechCrunch cease & desist, sent by that paragon of intellectual property rights protection, YouTube:

Buried in my email this evening I found a cease and desist letter from an attorney at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati, representing their client YouTube. We’ve been accused of a number of things: violating YouTube’s Terms of Use, of “tortious interference of a business relationship, and in fact, many business relationships,” of committing an “unfair business practice,” and “false advertising.” The attorney goes on to demand that we cease and desist in from engaging in these various actions or face legal remedies.

The offense we committed was creating a small tool that lets people download YouTube videos to their hard drives. We referenced the tool in a recent post that walked people through the process of moving YouTube Videos to their iPod.

The dangerous part is not in sending the cease & desist notice per se. It’s not even in sending it wrongfully, as Micheal Arrington goes on to point out in the rest of the post.

The idiocy of almost Biblical proportions is sending out a C&D to TechCrunch as if it’s just some blog written by just some guy. The idiocy is not knowing that TechCrunch is one of the biggest and most influential blogs on the planet – particularly in terms of web start-ups and technology.

And the danger is in not putting 2 and 2 together and coming up with the knowledge that your ridiculous C&D, and your name, and your firm’s name … are all going to be splashed across the computers of the most knowedgeable and influential people in the industry.

At the very least you need to have a smarter, more subtle, and more targeted approach. Leave the bullhorn at home. Then, you ensure that you don’t target people who are among your biggest fans. If you’re absolutely forced to, you do it in as nice a way as possible.

And, finally, being sure that what you’re issuing the C&D for is actually a violation of the terms and conditions of your site would be a very good idea.

[tags] techcrunch, youtube, C&D, lawyer, law, legal, web, john koetsier [/tags]