From a response to a discussion somewhere at some time…
“Like the venerable Mr. Christopher Trottier (@atomicpoet) pointed out,… the crazy thing is, if you make awesome art, the stats (i.e. likes, tweets, subscribers, followers, paycheques, accolades, trophies…) automagically come.
It’s when you go chasing stats that you might get the quick sugar-high of cheap satisfaction but no one’s going to give a shit in a week, let alone 100 years from now.
Of course I understand that “business objectives” require performance and things going “up and to the right,” but that is accomplished by being interesting, pushing your envelope, being true to your authentic self, and respecting your audience.
Ergo: Roll your own media. Fuck stats, make art. Create for yourself, let others look over your shoulder. Personal expression is the pinnacle of the assortment of digital creation tools and distribution methods we (albeit awkwardly) call social media.
Archeology Records is a music distribution label bringing under-heard garage bands, buskers, outsider artists, and renegade musicians to worldwide audiences through community building and digital-fu.
In brief: Archeology Records partners with artists for digital distribution and community promotion for their (possibly forgotten) musical treasures.
Artists own their masters and responsible for all creative direction > we take a split (automatic) > music gets heard. PS Originals only.
Have a shoebox of your most-excellent CDs in your garage? Recordings you always meant to “finish and release”? Can’t be fcked learning how to upload to all the channels and find audience? Great, let’s do a project. Get in touch.
The dance involves art and money, but not at the same time. In the first stage, it is paramount that the artist “reserves a protected gift-sphere in which the art is created.” He keeps money out of it. But in the next two phases, they can dance. The way I see it, Hyde’s dance steps go a little something like this:
Make art make money.
Make money make art.
It is the last step that turns this dance into a waltz — something cyclical so that the money is not the real end. Truly, for Jim Henson, money was a fuel that fed art.
If companies want to build their brands through social media, they’ve got to give up the kind of control that is the holy grail of traditional corporate communications.
Nowhere is this more evident than in the PR strategy of Olympics organizers, who are caught between old and new worlds of community engagement. New media is about free participation and building a community, and VANOC’s approach offers a lesson in recognizing the fine line between sabotaging community relations with excessive control and letting the bloggers run wild.
Read the rest of my BC Business column about how businesses can build a social media strategy on top of their traditional communications and marketing capabilities (and avoid the pitfalls of trying old tactics in a new medium), Let’s Get Social. Enjoy.
PS: What do you think of the cartoon image Antony Hare drew for me? I think it’s pretty cool.
PPS: Kris Krug was kind enough to update me the other day on the status of his alternative media centre for the Olympics, the True North Media House. Since they didn’t actually have a name for their group when I interviewed him, the place-holder name being tossed around at the time of the interview was the Independent Media Centre, which I abbreviated in the article as IMC. I’m informed there is already an IMC that is not at all related to True North Media House, so where you read IMC in my column, please translate it as True North Media House, to avoid confusion.
KK also took exception to the following line in my column: “IMC spokesperson and web 2.0 entrepreneur Kris Krug says the people behind his group are overwhelmingly pro-Olympics and pro-business and are not remotely related to such groups as the new-media anarchists behind the Resistance 2010 campaign, with their No Olympics on Stolen Native Land motto”
While I was strictly correct in that the True North Media House is not the same organization as the Resistance 2010 campaign, Kris wants to make clear that anarchists and people of all stripes and affiliations are welcome under the big tent that is True North Media House. Glad we cleared that up.
Since launching happyfrog.ca just over a year ago, the small band of eco-minded renegades worked hard to help sustainability-focused businesses and organizations gain valuable exposure on the web, and in close conjunction with this effort, help green-minded consumers find these great biz’es and orgs.
Over this year, my colleagues and I attended all sorts of trade shows, conferences, meet-ups, presentations and camps to spread the message of sharing eco-smarts with your community. Indeed, we found great joy in seeing the positive impact we’ve made on green entrepreneurs and shoppers alike.
Evolution to a swimming mammal
Now, change is upon us. happyfrog has made friends with a pod of whales and announces happyfrog.ca has merged with 3rd Whale. This business merger means happyfrog.ca as we all know it will change significantly. Think of it as an evolution from a small amphibian to a giant mammal (and Darwin celebrates!).
The company will go forward as 3rd Whale with the aim of combining the happyfrog directory and social networking platform with 3rd Whale’s
mobile application (to be released for iPhone on in November, followed by Android and Blackberry versions) to markets down the West coast of North America, and to the world (and beyond! ;-).
For happyfrog to grow as fast as it did was not easy but … we’ve had a constellation of collaborators helping build the vision.
and all the other frogs who blogged, podcasted, vid-casted and otherwise helped.
Thanks also go to all the business owners who came to our focus groups, purchased ads, claimed their listings, spoke on a podcast, and said “thanks for helping us succeed”!
Same for the groups who invited us to speak at events and share this small revolution including Globe’s EPIC SustainableLiving Expo who which whom we put on an epic (heh) social media experimentat Canada Place (creating tons of creative commons’ content to support growing businesses), Shared Vision magazine for having our back in print, and Deirdre Rowland for getting us in the news and on the tube.
And most especially … thanks to *you* for showing up, reading our thoughts, sharing your knowledge, posting reviews, giving us a link, using the widget, and making our collective environment a little greener, and a little more fun. It would be lonely around here if you weren’t here. Truly, Thank You.
More about 3rd Whale and happyfrog
happyfrog founder (and independent media veteran), Ron Williams points out, “We couldn’t hope for a better partner than 3rd Whale – besides being values aligned, the “whales” bring technical and business skills to the table which help reach a larger audience and make change on a truly global scale.”
So, what does this mean for you?
You’ll see the site as you know it undergo a renovation and re-branding, you’ll see tens-of-thousands of new listings in new cities added (great for travelers too!), and you’ll see more tools coming out to help you share your eco-smarts with “pod mob” campaigns, mentoring programs, and reviews on-the-go with your smart phone.
Stay tuned for news about how your directory listings will change, blog posts will migrate and any changes to your account info – 3rd Whale will continue to respect both your privacy, and the time investment, you’ve put into happyfrog.ca.
I am truly grateful for your involvement in happyfrog.ca.
What happens when a happy frog and a pod of whales get together to change the world? Vancouver, Canada-based, green web companies 3rdWhale.com and happyfrog.ca announced an equity merger with plans to grow globally with the goal of helping eco-minded consumers make informed choices in all aspects of their lifestyle – from organic food to eco-travel.
Vancouver, BC (PRWEB) November 12, 2008 — Vancouver Canada-based, green web companies 3rd Whale and happyfrog.ca announced an equity merger and plans to grow globally under the 3rd Whale name.
The merger combines 3rd Whale’s location-based mobile phone application with happyfrog.ca’s rich “web 2.0” platform providing green consumers with cross-platform tools to find values-aligned businesses. By using the company’s next generation mobile and web tools, participants can easily share their eco-smarts by adding business reviews, blog posts, and mentoring programs to help others reduce their eco-footprint.
3rd Whale is best known for the “Greenest Person in the World” contest which generated media exposure from Venezuela to Germany. 3rd Whale is the brainchild of Boyd Cohen, who holds a Ph. D in Sustainable Entrepreneurship and is an Assistant Professor at British Columbia’s Simon Fraser University. The company recently opened an office in Sunnyvale, California and is actively adding members to the executive team and meeting with venture capital firms in Silicon Valley.
Dr. Cohen, CEO, points out, “By combining happyfrog’s expertise in web delivery of green business listings, and related community engagement, with the growing global brand of 3rdwhale.com and our mobile application, we are poised to initiate truly global change.”
In just over a year, happyfrog.ca grew into the definitive directory for finding environmental and wellness focused businesses and organizations in B.C. Happyfrog’s platform also gave a voice to bloggers and the public to share their opinions about favorite businesses from yoga to sushi with the Myhappyfrog social networking platform.
Happyfrog’s “Frog squad” of bloggers and podcasters were visible at eco-trade shows and conferences, including EPIC Sustainable Living Expo at Canada Place, resulting in tremendous exposure for the businesses and organizations showing real environmental leadership.
Founded by independent media veteran Ron Williams, happyfrog was built and launched by Webby-nominated consulting firm, Social Signal (known for Change Everything, BCHydro Green Gifts).
Williams, now President of 3rd Whale, expressed his excitement with the merger saying, “When I first dreamed of creating happyfrog.ca, I knew partnering with values and technology-aligned companies would be the key to scaling to a larger base. Upon meeting the 3rd Whale team, I knew we’d found a great fit to bring our local prototype to a worldwide audience.”
3rd Whale’s mobile application (called Luna) is in public beta for iPhone and on track for general release on Nov. 14th followed by versions for the Google Android and RIM Blackberry platforms. The happyfrog.ca site will be re-imagined and re-branded as 3rdwhale.com and tens of thousands of new entries will be added in conjunction with subsequent rolling launches in new markets worldwide.