Posts for 'Miscellaneous'

  • 5 Items of Interest for the Week of Feb. 25th

    Happy Friday! Below is VideoNuze's end-of-week feature, analyzing 5-6 interesting online/mobile video industry news items that we weren't able to cover this week. Enjoy!
  • 5 Items of Interest for the Week of Feb. 14th

    Happy Friday! Below is VideoNuze's end-of-week feature, analyzing 5-6 interesting online/mobile video industry news items that we weren't able to cover this week. Enjoy!

  • 5 Items of Interest for the Week of Feb. 7th

    Happy Friday! Below is VideoNuze's end-of-week feature, analyzing 5-6 interesting online/mobile video industry news items that we weren't able to cover this week. Enjoy!
  • 5 Items of Interest for the Week of Jan. 17th

    Happy Friday, and another snowy one if you're here in the Northeast U.S. like me. Below is VideoNuze's Friday feature, analyzing 5-6 interesting online/mobile video industry news items that we weren't able to cover this week. Enjoy!
  • Goodbye 2010, Hello 2011

    With the holidays upon us, it's time to say goodbye to 2010 and to think about the year ahead.

    As I described in my "Online/Mobile Video's Top 10 of 2010" post yesterday, it was a whirlwind year for the industry, with exciting progress on all fronts. 2011 is shaping up to be equally exciting as players in the ecosystem innovate and jockey for position.

    In 2010 I wrote almost 500 original analyses of industry events, and aggregated over 2,000 news items from third-party sources on VideoNuze. In 2011 VideoNuze will continue to provide analytical, even-handed coverage of the rapidly evolving online and mobile video industries, and those industries that are impacted by the rise of viewing on these new platforms. Readers continue to tell me that VideoNuze is one of the few media outlets that delivers consistently thoughtful industry analysis, resisting the hype and piling-on that is all too common today. I know VideoNuze readers are busy and have lots of choices for what to read, so thank you for making VideoNuze a part of your day.

    As the year winds down, I also want to say a big thank you to VideoNuze's sponsors and to the sponsors of the 3 VideoSchmooze events this year. Without them VideoNuze wouldn't be possible and so I'm very grateful for their support. As always, if you're interested in learning more about sponsoring either VideoNuze or VideoSchmooze events, please contact me.

    VideoNuze will be on break until Monday, January 3rd, unless something big happens during the holiday week. I'll continue to post news and do some tweeting, but for the most part I'll be relaxing and re-charging my batteries. I hope you'll be doing the same.

    Happy Holidays to all of you, see you in 2011!

  • Marriott Gets It Right With "Ultra-Adaptable Room"

    When I'm traveling I'm pretty much a Starwood loyalist. But this week I stayed at a Marriott in Newport, RI for a night and was pleasantly surprised with Marriott's "Ultra-Adaptable Room" which is not only well suited to the connected business traveler, but also highly appealing for guests who want to watch their own video, not just what's available from the expensive in-room entertainment options (to show how long it's been since I've stayed at a Marriott, apparently the Ultra-Adaptable Room concept was introduced in '07, so maybe this is old news for some of you).

    I've scanned in a picture from the brochure of the connected console that hangs on the wall adjacent to both the desk and the TV (it's about 18 inches wide and 6 inches high). As the labels indicate, there are multiple inputs, which offer a range of choices for video viewing from your laptop (HDMI, VGA, S-Video and Component). With the set-up guests can watch video that's stored locally (DVDs, weekend home movies, etc.) or, if using the hotel's broadband connection or their wireless aircard, can stream content from online sources (e.g. Hulu, Netflix, YouTube, etc.).

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  • In Unprecedented Deal, Google and Apple Team Up to Privatize the FCC

    VideoNuze has learned that Google and Apple have teamed up to privatize the FCC in a transaction preliminarily valued at $42.5 billion. Though the U.S. government is already widely believed to be controlled by corporate interests, this is the first time that a formal deal to transfer ownership of a government agency has been contemplated. The deal has far-ranging implications for the media and technology industries, not to mention for American democracy. VideoNuze has gained exclusive access to the details.

    In an interview last night, Google's CEO Eric Schmidt provided background: "Larry, Sergey and I were recently working on this new algorithm to fix the pickle we've gotten ourselves into in China. The boys are still just so incredulous that this is happening; they keep on saying 'We're Google for chrissakes, we can't let mere countries boss us around!' But then we got to thinking, yikes, what if the U.S. government started treating us this way? That would really suck."

    He continued, "And then it just hit us all at the exact same nanosecond (we're so wondrously simpatico that way) - what if, instead of being subject to the regulatory powers-that-be, we owned the regulatory powers-that-be?" But then, Larry's like 'Hmm, I'm not so sure about this guys - even though it would be wicked cool, would the public really let us pull it off?' Now, Larry can be a little bit of a Nervous Nellie, but in this case he had a good point. And then, boom, yet another brilliant idea hit us at the same nanosecond (I know it sounds freakish, but this really does happen with the three of us). We thought, 'What company can we partner with whose brand is walk-on-water loved and can do absolutely no wrong? And we all agreed - it's Apple of course!"

    In a follow-up interview, Apple's CEO Steve Jobs added further detail, "I was sitting in my office micro-managing the legal weenies on this HTC lawsuit aimed at gumming up the Nexus One's rollout when my iPhone rings with Eric's caller ID. Ordinarily I wouldn't even answer that back-stabbing, lying sack of you-know-what's call but I wanted to rub his nose in our big legal plans. So I nonchalantly answer the phone, 'What's up dirtbag, looking for some more of Apple's product ideas to steal?' And he's like, 'yeah, whatever, look, here's why I'm calling.'  And then he proceeds to tell me about this cockamamie scheme that he and those two Doogie Howser co-founder dorks of his have come up with, to privatize the FCC."  Jobs went on:

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  • Avaak Lands $10 Million Series B Round, Provides Another Example of Video's Value

    While my focus at VideoNuze is strongly on media/entertainment and consumer apps, I'm always on the lookout for other interesting broadband video applications. A perfect example is Avaak, which makes the Vue Personal Video Network, a system for remote video monitoring of your home or business. This week Avaak announced a new $10 million series B round, led by Qualcomm.

    Vue is a dead simple system which includes a gateway and 2 tiny wireless video cameras. The gateway connects to your router and you mount the camera wherever you want, adjusting them with an ingenious peel-and-stick magnetic mounts. You then monitor the video feeds through a personal dashboard. You can record the video, share it with others, add more cameras and even see the video through a new iPhone app. The system costs $299, with additional cameras running $99 each. Vue is a very clever and simple system that addresses a widespread security issue.

    What do you think? Post a comment now (no sign-in required).
  • VideoNuze Posts from the Caribbean

    If you noticed a little "virtual sand" in your VideoNuze emails this week, that's because I've been posting from St. John, in the U.S. Virgin Islands, where I'm on a quasi-vacation with my wife. If you've never been, I highly recommend it. Lounging on Trunk Bay's powdery white sand and snorkeling in its crystal-clear green water is one of life's exquisite pleasures (see below). Apologies for slow responses to emails and voicemails this week. Tomorrow I'm taking the full day off, so VideoNuze will be back on Monday.

  • Netpulse is Bringing Online Video to a Gym Near You

    Now there's really no excuse not to work out.

    This morning Netpulse is unveiling an exclusive partnership deal with Town Sports International, operator of 158 fitness clubs in the Northeast, to bring its interactive media platform to 8,000 pieces of cardiovascular equipment. The deal is yet another example of online video's growing pervasiveness. It's also another reminder of how clever entrepreneurs are finding unique new online video applications and business models. Yesterday, Bryan Arp, Netpulse's CEO brought me up to speed on the company and how the TSI deal works.

    When the Netpulse platform (which for TSI will be private labeled "Sports Clubs Active Network) is installed, the equipment user logs in and sees a customized view of their content choices. The user can watch live TV from their personalized line-up, dock their iPhone/iPod/iTouch in a cradle and watch all their iTunes content on a widescreen HD TV, browse among hundreds of music videos, create their own playlists and gain access to tons of online-only video. In addition, the platform will record the key metrics of their exercise session so that when the user goes home he/she can log-in and download their stats for analysis. Bryan likened it to having a set-top box on each piece of equipment.

    Netpulse is focused on one of the increasingly rare moments left when people are not online or connected to their mobile devices. But that 30-60 minutes spent in a gym is a perfect time to offer users entertainment choices because it's a huge incentive for them to go to the gym in the first place. It's a time to watch that episode of "Lost" that you missed or sample some independent online video program that your friends keep talking about. No doubt TSI recognizes this, and is a key motivation for them to partner with Netpulse. It doesn't take much to imagine how TSI could create an advertising campaign that focuses on how you can be entertained while you work out.

    For its part, Netpulse is clever about its approach to getting its platform into the gyms. It has signed deals to be integrated with manufacturers of screens that can be added to existing equipment and also with the manufacturers of the equipment itself. That means that Netpulse can be deployed when the fitness club upgrades existing equipment or when it does full replacements, which are done regularly. With the TSI deal, for example, any new equipment TSI purchases have to include the Netpulse platform.

    While Netpulse is focused on license fees for its platform, advertising quickly becomes a really attractive proposition for the club. Bryan estimates that the TSI locations (which are branded NY Sports Club, Boston Sports Club, etc.) alone account for 4 million user sessions per month. That's a critical mass opportunity for any brand selling to people with active lifestyles. Further targeting can be done based on profile information users submit.

    Netpulse is additional evidence of how online video is making it possible to offer consumers customized entertainment that fits their lifestyles. It also shows that by putting together an ecosystem of parties, each with their own motivations, everyone can benefit.

    What do you think? Post a comment now (no sign-in required).

  • Demo of Wired Magazine Highlights iPad's Appeal

    As I wrote several weeks ago, I'm skeptical of the new Apple iPad because it seems like an expensive gadget that will be hard to find mainstream buyers given its price points. Nonetheless, I thought it was a really slick device, and this week's demo of Wired magazine running on it reinforces my belief. The Wired demo, like an earlier one for Sports Illustrated, shows very tangibly how revolutionary iPad - and other tablet computers - are for print publishers. The way the editorial and advertising comes to life and readers can engage with it is quite compelling.

    Of course, the question still looms, will people pay $500-$800 for all that iPad coolness? Apple itself appears sensitive to the issue, clearly softening the market for possible price reductions soon after the iPad's release if volumes don't materialize. Going out on a limb a little, I for one believe we'll see an approximately $200 price reduction by holiday season '10, if not sooner. The iPad is too important to Apple and Steve Jobs to be allowed to flounder and the coming release of numerous lower-priced tablets from competitors will only add to the pressure on Apple. If iPad prices fall, it could indeed become a game-changer for Wired and other print publishers.

    What do you think? Post a comment now (no sign-in required).

  • Giving Thanks

    As Thanksgiving approaches, it's time to pause and say a few important thank yous. First, thank you to VideoNuze's readers, the executives who are on the front line of the broadband and mobile video revolution. You are inundated each day with announcements and other news sources competing for your attention, so I appreciate you taking time to read VideoNuze, comment on it, pass it along to colleagues and provide me with ideas for further posts.

    When I started VideoNuze 2+ years ago, my goal was for it to become the main online source for busy industry executives looking for daily analysis that goes beyond the headlines often found elsewhere. I wanted to provide fact-driven, well-reasoned arguments for my positions, and when being critical, explain why constructively, without being snarky. VideoNuze is all about executive-level, clear-headed analysis plus aggregating the most important industry news from other sources. Your feedback that VideoNuze has indeed become an authoritative voice for understanding key industry initiatives has been very gratifying.

    A big thanks also to VideoNuze's loyal sponsors, whose support makes VideoNuze possible. Current sponsors Akamai, Brightcove, Microsoft Silverlight, Twistage, ActiveVideo Networks, Digitalsmiths, ExtendMedia, Jambo Media and Visible Measures are all making key contributions to the broadband video ecosystem, and I encourage you to check them out.

    Back in the summer of '07, when I originally pitched the idea of VideoNuze to a small group of broadband video companies, I relied on an executive summary and assumptions about audience growth. Eight companies came on board as charter sponsors, and as VideoNuze's email distribution and site traffic have grown, another 40+ companies have become sponsors. These companies gain strong branding and lead generation at an extremely cost-effective CPM (if you'd like to learn more about sponsoring, please contact me).

    Thanks also to the many industry executives who have taken time this year to brief me on their companies' activities and also to help educate me about the industry. I learn a ton from these conversations, and they help me road-test and synthesize different ideas I'm developing. Often there are hard-working PR professionals facilitating these briefings, being persistent about getting the calls set up. I appreciate how really good PR people understand VideoNuze's editorial focus and know when their clients' news is a good match.

    In 2009, VideoNuze stepped up its event calendar, hosting 2 VideoSchmooze events in NYC and a breakfast at the CTAM Summit in Denver. I've received lots of positive feedback on these as being targeted, cost-effective and high-quality networking/educational opportunities. Thanks to the hundreds of you that attended. There's lots more planned next year, which you'll be hearing about soon.

    In 2009 I also spoke at more than a dozen private company meetings - at executive off-sites, all-hands meetings, customer outings and sales/marketing strategy sessions. I'm continually revising a presentation that I share which explains the broadband industry's key trends, data and upcoming technology/product shifts. These meetings are very interactive and they've been a great opportunity for me to get really deep with key players in the market (off the record) about what they're doing and what's ahead. If I can add value to a meeting you're planning, please let me know.

    Last but not least, thanks to 2 partners who help distribute the daily VideoNuze email, the National Association of Television Program Executives and The Diffusion Group. Each is doing outstanding work in the broadband video space as well, and I continue to be involved in their activities. And thanks to my weekly VideoNuze Report partner Daisy Whitney, with whom I've cranked out 40+ podcasts this year.

    If you're on the road this weekend for Thanksgiving, travel safely and enjoy. VideoNuze will be back on Monday for the home stretch of 2009.

  • As Summer Ends, A Time to Say Thanks

    With September's start, the kids heading back to school and overnight lows in the chilly 40s here in the Boston area, it is time to recognize, reluctantly, that this unusually long (and wet!) summer is coming to an end. As many of you, like me, prepare to return to your "regular" routines, I'd like to pause and say a few words of thanks.

    First, a huge thanks to VideoNuze's many thousands of readers who give purpose to my daily work. Nearly two years since launching VideoNuze, readership continues to build, with over 9,000 industry participants now receiving the daily VideoNuze email and over 100,000 unique visitors coming to the web site each month. I'm delighted at how VideoNuze has found its place as a trusted source of analysis and news for many in the industry.

    This summer has been very productive: 82 analyses comprising almost 50,000 words, 490 industry news items posted to the site from over 25 sources and 11 podcasts with my partner Daisy Whitney. While other sites crank out a far greater quantity than VideoNuze, I'd like to think none offer higher quality. This summer I also managed to squeeze in a couple of consulting projects, 4 speaking engagements, 3 panels I moderated and a 10 day vacation in Israel. Last but not least, VideoNuze's next 2 events coming up in October took shape (registration for the Oct. 13th "VideoSchmooze" NYC event is now live). Whew!

    I always welcome readers' emails or calls, whether they're to agree or disagree with what I've written. Though I'm not a hound for compliments, I will admit that I greatly enjoy the emails I receive saying things like, "Thanks for the consistently high quality analysis," "Just wanted to say how useful VideoNuze has been here in the U.K." "Your stuff is consistently enlightening" or "I enjoy your writing and the thoughtfulness your perspective brings to what is typically an over-hyped and under-analyzed topic."

    These types of emails help answer some variant of a question I've been asked more than any other in the past two years: "How the hell do you churn this thing out every single day?!" Beyond the pat answer that "every job requires a certain discipline," the real explanation is that for me, VideoNuze is what Malcolm Gladwell, in his superb third book, "Outliers," describes simply as "meaningful work." I love analyzing and writing about the technology and media industries and the change that broadband and mobile are bringing to the video landscape. It's painstaking yet intellectually stimulating to try putting the puzzle pieces together and gratifying to know I have a role in influencing how industry executives determine their strategies and execute their plans.

    Second, a huge thanks to VideoNuze's sponsors. From VideoNuze's original 8 charter sponsors, there have now been over 30 companies that have sponsored VideoNuze at one time or another. There isn't room to acknowledge them all, but I encourage you to visit the sponsors' page of the web site and to click through and learn more about each. Beyond the important technology and services each is offering to the industry, many also provide education in the form of free webinars, white papers, etc. As VideoNuze's traffic has grown, the value of sponsoring has as well. I've tried to keep rates reasonable, ensuring a strong ROI along many different metrics (as always, if you're interested in sponsoring VideoNuze, please contact me).

    Lastly, thanks to many partners who play a key role in VideoNuze's ongoing success. These include NATPE, The Diffusion Group, my fine overseas technology firm and several PR firms (e.g. Horn Group, Blue Point Venture Marketing, October Strategies) and design firms which have assisted with VideoNuze's events, along with my excellent general counsel (and lovely wife!). Thanks also to many in industry who have shared a particular statistic I've been in search of, or who have made an introduction to someone I was eager to speak to.

    I look forward to continuing to explore broadband and mobile video's future with all of you.

  • Taking a Holiday Break

    I'm heading out of the country for a 10 day family vacation starting tonight. I'll be online sporadically and will post a few times next week if there's something interesting happening. Otherwise, I'll be back in the saddle on Mon, July 13th, refreshed and recharged. I suspect many of you will also be taking advantage of the July 4th holiday to take some time off. Enjoy!

  • Seeking Your Feedback

    Recently I've received several emails from VideoNuze readers with a common theme: we love the quality of VideoNuze posts, but sometimes they can be quite long - is it possible to provide some sort of summary at the top of each one (with bullet points, a short paragraph, etc.)?

    I'm constantly mindful of the length of VideoNuze posts and these are good suggestions. I try to do my best to keep posts as tight as possible, while still trying to be thorough. Some days I can do so in 300 or 400 words. Other days it may take closer to 600 or 700.

    Regardless, I'm sensitive that readers have a lot on their plates and so finding ways to make VideoNuze content more accessible and usable is super-important to me. I'm wide open to suggestions for how to do so. If you have thoughts or suggestions, please leave a comment or just drop me an email at

    I look forward to hearing from you!

  • Goodbye to 2008

    At last, it's time to say goodbye to 2008. I'm sure we'd all agree that for all kinds of good and not-so-good reasons, the year will be one to remember.

    2008 was an important year of growth and change for the broadband video industry. To me, the most significant development was the first-time use of broadband video by millions of users and the deepening use of it by millions of others. Broadband is well on its way to becoming the most adopted and heavily-used medium ever.

    There were many key moments during the year which drove users to their PCs (mainly) to check out the videos they wanted, when they wanted them. Moments like the Summer Olympics, Tina Fey's Sarah Palin sketches, Jeremiah Wright's rants, to name just a few. It was also a year in which broadcast programs were viewed online millions of time, offbeat user-generated videos continued their popularity and professional talent launched their own broadband-only initiatives.

    As I've said repeatedly, broadband's "openness" - the ability for any content provider to connect directly with its intended audience - is its most critical differentiator. Broadband's openness is causing transformational change in the traditional video distribution value chain, impelling incumbents of all stripes to evolve in order to survive. Meanwhile, a whole new crop of content providers, distributors and technology companies has sprung up to seize broadband's new opportunities.

    It is both dizzying and exhilarating to make sense of all of this. When I first started VideoNuze in the fall of '07, the thought of trying to do so was quite nerve-racking. Yet through countless interactions with many of you, I've gotten my groove as the year has progressed. I continue to learn something each day from the large and growing VideoNuze community, and hopefully through the increasing number of comments on the site, you're learning from each other as well.

    In 2008, VideoNuze's first full year, between me and a handful of contributors, there were over 300 posts, totaling over 175,000 words, plus 2,000+ news items added to the site from 40 different industry publications. Though that's quite prolific it is still far less output than you'll see elsewhere online. But my goal has been quality rather than quantity. I'd rather you read 1 insightful piece from VideoNuze each day than 5 that do little more than magnify the blogosphere's already deafening echo chamber.

    I'm proud that many of you have told me VideoNuze's posts have helped you gain a better understanding of the broadband market's dynamics and how best to develop your own strategies and implementation plans. That's the whole point of VideoNuze; to become indispensible to anyone with a stake in their organization's success with broadband video. In 2009, I'll continue working hard toward that goal. I appreciate your support and time and I look forward to much more interaction with you in the coming year.

    VideoNuze will be on hiatus until Monday, January 5th (unless of course something big happens during this time). I'll be re-charging my batteries, and I hope most of you will be doing so too.

    2009 is going to be a big year for broadband video's continued evolution and for VideoNuze's continued growth. In addition to other things, I'll have details shortly of an exciting event VideoNuze is planning in March in New York City that will be a prime opportunity to meet industry colleagues and hear from leading executives.

    In the meantime, I wish you a happy and healthy holiday season...see you in January!

  • Giving Thanks and Keeping Perspective

    If ever there was a year for giving thanks - and for trying to keep perspective - this is surely it. For the last several months or more, all of us have been buffeted by the economic meltdown to one extent or another. It isn't fun for anyone, and regrettably, if you believe the experts, things aren't going to turn around anytime soon.

    Still, as I mentioned in last week's "Deflation's Risks to the Broadband Video's Ecosystem," for those of us who make our living focused in one way or another on broadband video, there are reasons to remain optimistic. Consumers continue to shift their behavior toward on demand, broadband-delivered alternatives. Clever entrepreneurs are introducing ever-more innovative technology-based products and services. Large pools of existing revenues are shifting around, in search of better, higher ROI ways to be allocated. And investors recognize all of this, motivating them to continue funding companies throughout the broadband ecosystem.

    These are all things to be thankful for, and hopefully allow us to keep a little perspective. For those of us old enough to remember past downturns, it is also important to keep in mind that there have been difficult times in the past, and fortunately, eventually, things do correct. That doesn't relieve the current pain, but at least gives us a measure of hope for better days ahead.

    Speaking of giving thanks, I want to give a shout out to the 30 companies that sponsored VideoNuze or its events in 2008. VideoNuze is just over a year old now, and I've been truly gratified by the support its received from both sponsors and the community of readers and participants.

    VideoNuze is not immune from the economic meltdown, so I'd like to also mention that we're offering some great sponsorship specials going into '09. If you're interested in reaching a highly-targeted, broadband-centric group of senior decision-makers, VideoNuze is an outstanding value. I welcome your calls or emails.

    Thanks to our '08 sponsors below. Happy Thanksgiving and see you on Monday.

    ActiveVideo Networks,, Adobe, Akamai, Atlas Venture, Anystream (Grab Networks), Brightcove, ChoiceStream, Critical Media (Syndicaster), Digitalsmiths, ExtendMedia, EyeWonder, FAST Search & Transfer, Flybridge Capital Partners, Goodwin Procter, Gotuit, Jambo Media, KickApps, Kiptronic, Macrovision, Move Networks, Multicast Media, PermissionTV, Signiant, Silicon Valley Bank, thePlatform, Tremor Media, VMIX, WorldNow and Yahoo

  • Deflation's Risks to the Broadband Video Ecosystem

    Yesterday was one of those days that made my head hurt. I suspect you've all had days like this as well, as the economic crisis unfolds. One moment there's news that temporarily makes you feel better, the next moment, news that makes you feel worse than ever.

    For example, yesterday morning I appeared on a panel with four market researchers at a conference focused on New England startups and technology. As I listened to the others talk glumly about the fundamentals of the sectors they cover, I was feeling a little more optimistic. As I explained when it was my turn to speak, "the fundamentals of the broadband video economy are relatively strong" (note: I always feel queasily like John McCain when I say that) and there's much reason to be optimistic going into '09.

    It's true. Broadband video usage is growing each month. There's a vibrant ecosystem of early stage technology companies that continue to attract new investments. Many of these companies are hiring. The overall user experience is getting stronger and stronger, making the broadband medium a more appealing environment for consumers, advertisers and content providers. And importantly, there are large pots of existing spending that broadband can share-shift.

    Add it all up and compare broadband to say auto manufacturing, retailing, financial services, home building and other industries that have been decimated by the economic slowdown and things look pretty decent.

    That feeling of tempered optimism dissipated last night though, not just because the market dropped 400+ points yesterday to a level not seen since 2003, but because of an article I read on ("Stocks Are Hurt by Latest Fear: Declining Prices") about an insidious new consequence of the meltdown called "deflation," which has economists deeply worried about what still lies ahead for the global economy.

    Most of us have never experienced deflation, which is defined as a "general decline in prices." As one measure, the Consumer Price Index, which tracks how much we pay for groceries, entertainment, and other goods and services, dropped by 1% in October, the largest decline in the 61 years the index has been calculated.

    Deflation is so scary because it basically forces all businesses to cut costs to meet the realities of lower prices. The contraction process feeds on itself, causing a downward spiral of economic activity and paralysis. This is bad enough even in established sectors, where inelasticity helps to buffer deflation's effects. My concern is that in a nascent ecosystem like broadband video, deflation's impact could be far worse.

    Here's what I mean: say you're an early stage broadband technology provider selling to media companies. Your product meshes with the customer's own roadmap and has clear advantages. You've priced it in a way to be sensitive to market competitiveness and also internal profitability goals. You may have also developed business cases showing the customer benefits.

    But now the media company says that its ad spending has slowed (itself driven by reduced consumer spending), in turn cutting its willingness to pay (the forces of deflation at work). So if you want the deal, you have to accept it at a lower-than-expected price. If too many of those situations arise, your business model gets blown. When too many business models get blown early stage investors say "freeze" and decide to hold off investing until the climate warms up again. When that happens, the cycle of innovation locks up.

    Anyway, you get the picture of how the dominos can fall. Since the broadband ecosystem is still quite fragile, with value propositions often still works in progress, the specter of deflation is quite nerve-racking. Let's hope its full brunt isn't realized.

    What do you think? Post a comment now.

  • VideoNuze Back Up and Running - Hopefully

    Some of you may have noticed the VideoNuze site was down intermittently this week, and also that you did not receive emails from me this past Monday or yesterday. That's because VideoNuze was the target of a persistent and vicious hacker. What a nightmare. If you've ever been on the receiving end of a hacker's onslaught, I know you'll be able to relate. If you haven't, consider yourself lucky.

    Suffice to say it's been a week I'd like to forget. We've scrambled to make a series of fixes. VideoNuze isn't out of the woods yet, so you may still see some interruptions of service. But our blood pressure is returning to some semblance of normalcy and we're in a better position than we were a week ago. Thanks for your patience.

  • Goodbye to a Busy Summer, Hello to a Busier Fall

    As the traditional summer season winds to a close today, I have to ask: what happened to the normal summer slowdown? It just didn't happen. In fact, the pace of broadband video activity was unrelenting, and I know from speaking with many of you over the last few months that I'm far from alone in this assessment.

    As just one metric of the busy summer of '08, approximately 600 broadband-related news items have been posted to VideoNuze since Memorial Day. Each of these items (available here fyi) is tied to a specific product announcement, partnership deal, financing, content initiative or other industry activity. And these 600 are just from the finite number of relevant publications from which VideoNuze aggregates its industry news. There was no doubt more news as well.

    In addition, VideoNuze's contributors and I have made almost 100 original analyses/posts on the industry's key trends, products/technologies and research data during this busy summer. Demonstrating the sheer breadth of broadband video's growing influence, consider examples of just a handful of this summer's posts:

    • Growth/challenges of pre-roll advertising
    • Trends around short vs. long-form video programming
    • Broadband ISPs' ongoing struggle to maintain their networks' viability
    • Push by aggregators to differentiate themselves and gain market share
    • Launch of a fashion magazine's original video series
    • How a law firm is using video as a recruitment tool

    VideoNuze remains laser-focused on broadband video as a unifying theme of all our analyses and posts. My world view - as most of you are no doubt painfully aware of by now - is that we are in the early stages of a relentless and inevitable shift to an open, broadband-centric era of video delivery, characterized by massive creativity and innovation, fierce competition and unprecedented consumer value.

    As we say goodbye to a busy summer, I'm preparing to say hello to an even busier fall. Industry participants have a full plate of product announcements and partnerships pending and I expect the pace of activity will only quicken. VideoNuze will be there to separate the wheat from the chafe, helping all of you better understand what the flurry of news and data should mean to you.

    Importantly, this fall also brings an exciting expansion of VideoNuze's mission, as we begin a push into focused, high-impact events. This is a natural progression of VideoNuze's overall value proposition and one which I've been eager to pursue for a while now.

    Kicking things off will be our inaugural VideoSchmooze, a first-of-its kind industry networking event to be held on Tues, Sept. 9th in Boston. There are already 200+ people registered, representing virtually every VC firm in the area, all video-focused startups and established companies and loads of entrepreneurs and others tied to the industry. Space is still available for this free event and registration is here.

    Then on November 10th I will moderate VideoNuze's first Broadband Video Leadership Breakfast on the first full day of the annual CTAM Summit. Having moderated at dozens of industry conferences over the years, I've tried to bring together best practices I've observed, and have also personally recruited a blockbuster A-list group of executives for what I think will be a must-attend event. I'm excited to share more details later next week and hope you'll be able to join us.

    In the meantime, I wish you a safe and restful Labor Day weekend. See you on Tuesday!