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Monthly Archives: November 2007

This is not strictly ‘Multiplatform’ news.. It is however extremely funny and this is my blog so I can post whatever inane rubbish I want to!

In all seriousness though, this is a great example of how BBC Comedy have got their content all over the place, this is from Beebo, but there is also a great BBC Comedy website called Comedy Shuffle where they find up and coming talent and showcase it online and also on BBC Three on Thursday nights at 11PM. Its a good example of going to where the talent are and giving them a platform to shine as opposed to getting talent to come to them and then changing the fundamental uniqueness that made them funny in the first place.

Vodpod videos no longer available. from www.bebo.com posted with vodpod

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I’ve got a cold, it sucks. I am one of the worst kind of people when it comes to getting sick as I suffer from the classic predicament known as ‘Man-Flu-itis’. This means that whenever I get ill I always make it look ten times worse than anybody else who had it before me. However, I am taking one for the team by not being off work today… I’m so playing the martyr card.

Now, with me being ill I am thinking about viral stuff.

For those of you that don’t know what a ‘viral’ video is, let me point you in the direction of a quick guide to viral video at Wikipedia. It’s a word that gets thrown around a lot in the organisation I work in and yet I think the actual reality isn’t quite understood.

Firstly I think it is really important to distinguish between an ‘online video clip’ and an ‘online video clip that has gone viral’. It is the ‘gone viral’ part that is most important as I think there is always the confusion that whenever you are wanting to make a video that you want to be popular online you refer to it as a viral video, when in fact it has to ‘go viral’ in order to ‘become viral’. Dan Greenburg writes a great (if somewhat shady) article about how to make videos go viral, it’s interesting reading.

Have I lost anyone yet? No? Good.

Now there are some great examples of where a viral video has taken off and grown to crazy numbers, a quick scan of the Youtube highest rated videos shows it littered with music video premières, dance crazes, comedy clips and usually at some point either a child or animal doing something stupid. All of these, apart from the music videos (these tend to rate high due to already existing fan bases that come to view the videos early), share a quality that makes them ‘sticky’. So sticky that people want to share them with other people, therefore making them go viral.

A great example I got pointed to today by Vicki Fox – researcher extraordinaries – was a music video by an artist called Soulja Boy. The music track was called Crank That and in the video there was a dance routine. Not only did the video do great numbers, but Soulja followed it up with an instructional video on how to do the dance. This then led to lots of different members of the Youtube audience then submitting their versions of the dance. I haven’t done the maths, but the viewers that will have been exposed to Souljas song as a result of this is huge… We’re talking millions and millions. Now that’s a viral.

It’s hard to predict what is going to get sticky and what isn’t and a good example of where a brand has made a big mistake is with Lambrini and their ‘Do The Lambrini’ Youtube and TV advertising campaign. Due to the fact that they were in fact copying a Youtube craze called Jumpstyle and passing it off as their own didn’t go down well at all and resulted in negative videos from Youtube viewers showing their anger. The numbers say it all. Lambrini got about 21,000 views. Jumpstyle has to date over 10 million views.

I feel that online short form videos are getting much better, especially in regard to output from TV producers. The trick seems to be in creating unique bespoke content for the online platform that isn’t re-formatted material from a TV programme or bits from the cutting room floor. Viewers respond to video that is written, shot and produced specifically with short form in mind. With this model, the possibility of video going viral is much higher as is the potential of the platform to be able to grow and evolve.

Now I must get back to my man-cold, I’m on a mission to get as much sympathy as I can.

Sometimes I find myself looking around the web for some interesting news story that could make perfect fodder for a Multiplatform project. Something to share with the rest of the team so we can throw around some thoughts and get all stimulated (the work safe kind of stimulated!).

Having stumbled upon this video of a robotic exoskeleton, I have come to realise that sometimes real life is far crazier than anything I could make up. If I’d had to bet money I’d have thought it was promotional material for a sci-fi movie but it turns out it will probably end up on a battlefield somewhere.

It’s all very reminiscent of Sigourney Weavers ‘Power Loader’ in Aliens. Another example of life imitating art. Lets just hope life doesn’t imitate the face eating Aliens next.

I was going to write a post on virtual worlds today as a colleague of mine has been doing a lot of reading on them recently and I have a bit of a gap in my knowledge. This got me thinking and whilst in search of some statistics to draw upon I came across Neil Perkins post all about Virtual worlds. It is such a good article that I suggest that you have a quick read. Within Neils post is also a link to a Fabric Of Folly blog post on Second Life and other virtual worlds. It contains a comprehensive list of metaverses to check out so again head on over there.

I found this great blog which tracks a video games teacher called Kim as she enters the world of Second Life. It all begins back in November 2005 and she’s still there now. It’s good to be able to follow one persons journey, which I guess is what blogs are all about!

As a user I can’t say I have had great experiences with metaverses. I once spent a day in Second Life and found it to be a bit confusing and definitely not a slick user experience. Its potential is mind bogglingly huge, but for me personally, it’s going to be the evolution of these worlds that will make things interesting. I have a hard enough time trying to do things in my ‘first life’ let alone trying to spend even more time in a second one.

I’m probably going to add to this post as I continue to look into virtual worlds, but for now follow the links in the post to get a good overview.

There was a Virtual Worlds Conference in October in San Jose, plenty of blogs have filtered down the info so again click the links to get the latest.

Ok, so I’m not talking about the 1980 Mike Hodges film… Although I could… for hours. Max Von Sidow is the campest evil deathlord to grace the silver screen ever. It’s a fact.

Anyway, the point of this post is to share some great flash website links (a-ha, you see the tenuous link now?!) that I have come across in the past couple of days whilst doing some research. There’s not much more to say really other than it still amazes me the great stuff designers are doing with flash. The innovation in some of the stuff I’ve been seeing is staggering and very impressive.

The sites I’m sharing all offer something, whether it be smart use of audio, innovative navigation or great design. What they all share, in my opinion, is a strong balance between innovation and technology with great content. The user experience and the way in which they interface with the site is key to their coolness.

If any of you know of some great flash sites please share the love.

http://www.creaktif.com

http://nikefootball.nike.com/nikefootball/

http://screenvader.com

http://www.sonypictures.com/homevideo/strangerthanfiction/

http://www.okaydave.com/

http://www.kostry.net

http://www.martin-h.com/

http://www.picnik.com