Business of Open APIs


(via 2012 Is Shaping Up As the Year of Open APIs – Dion Hinchcliffe’s Next-Generation Enterprises)

From 2012— but still very true for 2013 too

The nature of the innovation established by Creative Commons, by the Free Software Movement, by Free Culture, which is reflected in the Web in the Wikipedia, in all the Free Software operating systems now running everything, even the insides of all those locked-down vampiric Apple things I see around the room. All of that innovation comes from the simple process of letting the kids play and getting out of the way.

Web2.0 – Evangelism Part 2- Liveblogging

Tools of the trade

enourmouse # of technologies

cant participate in all communities – have to pick and choose
can try out all the clones for free or low cost
Not an endorsement of any tech – best tool for him or her – might not work – hosted versus local

tools out there – to get at tofay

the ecosystem

a lot of tools fall into one to one category

all web2.0 tech powerful enuff to abuse or misues


1. Your Site
Blogs, RSS, forums, email

2. Out at the Edges
blogosphere, social networks, photo and vid sharing –

3. Offline – (3d worlds)
events, meetups, conferences

make your own presence as a company known

very interative tools

start small and private and expand over time

change from buying a superbowl as

easy to get intimidated – how to do all this stuff

how to manage all the attention and info – pick and choose little pieces, start small and expand over time
Part of the community itself

Categories of tools
SOcial Networks
email lists

list of 10 other things – all req interactivity and maintenance and managment

not all tech right for every org

“rules are” – they are full of it – misleading lie – everyone doesnt need the same difunct lifestyle

2 or 3 – maybe not everything

regularly updated, frequently updated – what its all about

blogs – owner starts conv and everyone responds
wiki – share document between a number of people

social networking underpinning of these tech
enable who you have relationship in a specific way
relationship confers some status

groups and forums connect community to each other

“a series of tubes becomes a series of crossroads”

complement between the diff tools

highlights of key ones

great starting point
immediate and ongoing connection
provides human face to the evangelist
enables you to join the community
be proactive and quick to act
low barrier to entry (just get started)

keep the relationship going in a consistent way

start with what works for you – ok to start without comments – didnt allow comments when they started

feeds , permalinks, established blogging elements

lot of the tools self correct over time – listen to the community – they will have impact and you will have a better result

not being dogmatic or bullheaded

not about the tools – blogs are forgiving and about a relationship – plenty of places to find online
great great complments to the other tools

Podcasting and videoblogging
VIdeo services – metacafe, blip, photobucket

photo tools – flickr, photobucket

desktop tools – iMovie, Quicktime, Audactity, Picasa

tools becoming commodified

editable web pages
great for collaboration on evolving projects
need tending
hosted vs server side
hosted – social text, jotspot, PBWiki
server – mediawiki, instiki

can rapidly go out of date
inaccuracies and errors if not tended

everything has mistakes – key= people who are interested in managing and maintaingn and organize – let them organize

willing to play a littl, it doesnt have to be perfect

follow model as blogs – free or cheap and getup&go – or installed software (call IT dept) – more complex but more power

easy to move data between diff types of software

all prod are low enough to expense 🙂

not uncommon

wiki good tool for internalizing evangelism

wiki less scary inside org

tie to email address for business and internal use – people grow up – wouldnt do that with name attached to it

any site with a feed can be tracked passively and centralized
cuts down on the number of email newsletters
feeds for concepts, searches, topics – search the future

subscribe to feed on a topic – verticalizes what you are searching

more broad than just the exact name – not having to track all the blogs – have the software do the work

discover sites and blogs discussing the topic

hosted vs server for feed reading – power users want offline

sharepoint and portal apps allow feed reading as well

get out there in the community
anything on your blog can link out – post screenshots to flickr, upload video to youtube
ensure you are easy to find
use tags, social bookmarks
use the same screenname across the ecosystem
create a presence – product community page, events calendar

be respectful of the context you are in
myspace and plumbers 😉

devil is in the details – use the same tags – persistent vocabulary – use the same screenname across ecosystem

GM mention
find us on – and then all the networks you participate in

care about participating in those communities

authenticity – dont join a network just to be on it – if you cant add something useful and acting like a native and being honest for that group of users – dont do it – thats OK

no reason to have empty – noting lonelier than flickr without photos

SOme guiding priciples

Be Authentic
you are not in control
get transparent

a Day In The Life

How do you keep up with this stuff
skillset and type of person

a day in the life of mr dash
works in blogging company
every customer has a blog
wonderful customers not afraid to kick in the ass

x tens of millions with tools
track 4-5 brands
2-3 senior executives represent the company
any mention of the brands or people is considered an obligation for 6A to respond
SF, PAris, Tokyo
25 million people, 25 lang, 20 key terms
volume in blog posts mentioning in a lang they can respond in tends to be 6-700 posts
on days when launching something new to somethign active – 10k posts
goal to acknowledge every one
over time – reduced the amount of resources it takes to do it
1. uses all of the feed search systems
a. icerocket, technorati,, yahoo blgo search, google blog search
each tool does a search for a product term – searches for all – opens each search in own tab in FFox bookmarkes the tabs
does for each products
feed of every search for the tools
how the day begins
some agg have the tools built in
dashboard – lots of spam and people misusing the terms
take away x %
some people are tag spammers – broad brush
heart of customer comm
diff cats – hey trying out this product or service – mention it in passing
people who just formed a relationship with the org
key opps to say HI I am with X – thanks for talking, considering doing a meeting – huge touchpoint
surprised where thay benefit comes back
POC that early changes impressions
most is fairly structured – not in favor of copy and pasting – follow structure – make bullet list of main points and make them releavant
saying something that is unique to a certain community
“hello, welcome, thanks”
and add on epiece of info that isnt sales-y
“if you need information – here is how to get in touch”

will expose if there is a problem with help at your company

Asymmetrical – will find the gaps and the outliers – where to take the notes and maintain a record

second major group is moderately disgruntled
annoyed, peeved, little problems
fairly straightforward
9 out of 10 – prob aware of it if engaged in community – shouldnt be a surprise
once you set policy you can talk about what you are doing about it
justify what you get in exchange for the fees

underprmise and overdeliver
aware and working on it
fix it or explain – but be sincere
they will understand by being upfront

2 easy cases – welcome to the community or you have a problem

3rd – people who are really upset

most upset for something that has nothing to do with your company, product, service
your product failed at the wrong time – impetus is never about the failure of the prod – you can never say “here is what you are upset about” – cant do that – more exasperating

going a little beyond makes a big difference

more when the battery comes back

Web2.0 – Evangelism – Liveblogging

Deb Schultz and Anil Dash

deb and anil

Philosophy of evangelism
what is community evangelism
Key concepts
Human tools and tech tools
technical know-how
case studies

WHat can you do with a Book? (AD)

concept that informs a lot of what he sees personally

talk to young people – what can they do with a book – read it, notes, cover it, burn it
dont quickly get to the idea they can write a book

dramatic change for them – they have control over somethign they interact with every day

profound disctinction re the web – the web is something they can manipulate, creat and control

Want to start a podcast, reach a large audience

ton of times reading books or school – but none on the web

diff is the potential of evan

what they can do with the mediaum

2 ideas to review – Persistance and Awareness
fundamental enablers
make the rest o what we do powerful
how many use print or DM?
small number
some actually still cold call caustomers

how do we shift from old school to new school – thru persistance and awareness
obvious in retrospect

media is totally disposabel – degrade automatically – can be lost forever
business comm – a lot that we send comm in a way that says “this is disposable” –
we dont have to settle for that – great comm can be made that we want to keep – meaningful enuff that we want to keep over time

Visits to the Long Tail
from the last month
61% from last month, 27% older than 1 month, 12% older than one month from search

how much of our commm is around newness, and immediacy – we are ignoring almost 1/2 that conv

people are sending links, passing them on, referring to the later

lots of comm going on that is persistant over time – valuable for the long run.
see a lot of cisitors to older content on a blog that is about writing a book (aritfact on a shelf for the rest of your life

blog is persistant over time

social tension arising from use using email and IM over time
emo we need something to hold on to

ikea is a maze – cant get out without buying something

not how the web works
exp of going thru store where they are controlling everywhere you go and everything you see

profound thing – not having a maze

Permalinks and date stamp – see them forever
what was missing from those company websites designed to be ikea store
in all of social media there is a social contract – date stamp promises there will be more updates


because no ones name was attached they were free to make something that didnt have value – namestamp is a confirmation of value

wikipedia – edit link – we trust you to be part of the editing – think about what a leap or promise that is

i have the right to be on the page – think of the risk and opp they are taking wiht that – social expectations being set – I WILL STAY IN TOUCH

Intentions of maintainging relationships

want to talk to someone other than asking for money

we dont stay in touch –

how do we turn the promise to stay in touch where we actually do stay in touch

fulfilling that promise to stay in touch

at the bottom line – what matters

the reason we can trat them as disposable – they are

if we promise and we do so the bar is raised – we can only stay in touch if we add value – no value less attention is paid

kids can watch a movie over and over

resonance there that doesnt happen with web and web20 tech

1/3 of the books he moved he never read

intention of emotional connection

books and movies about meaning ful things we have that ARENT people

can comm using web2.0 that is meaningful and resonant as the best media we consume

as meaningful and the best movie you have ever seen

making something lasting, meaningful and persistant

not to say it will be in the same way – but will be able to comm and treat with the respect appropriate to that comm (friends getting engaged announced with txt)

treating phys objects as disposable – they dont have to be – they can be valuable


how meaningful a relationship you can have with non-competitors

crux of info overload problem
one key resp as evangelist is to nav sea of info to find what has value and what needs to be trashed

“I NEED MORE EMAIL” – no one says that

awareness not about alert messages – prone to being misused

thoughtless – not appropriate – hurts attention – worse than spam –

junkmail can be deleted – mental expense of people being unintentionally being thoughtless because tools allow it, enable – rude by accident – tools encourage us to do that


offer forgiveness for myself and all of us

dont have to be rude

what inspired us – what do people love and covet – ipod, tivo, wii

why these tools were diff than fax machine in office space

same fols working on them

should be similar

diff b/c they offer you control

tv commercials – loud, obnoxious, annouting

good tv now

tivo – not beholden to schedules or commercials – control
ipod – control instead of radio station
wii – 1 button , move it around – visceral powerful levels of control –

how do we trans to web experiences?


Feeds about control – choosing where and when you get info
subscribe, get info – on your terms, on your time

some of the best tools for feed look like tivo, ipod and wii

seeing there is a convergence towards software and web tech and phys devices enabling control

persistanc e- val over time
awareness – connection without being rude

Persistance + awareness = a relationship

relationship doesnt fit into columns

assign metrics and measurement about evangelism

goal of evangelism – maintain a relationship on the web

using web2.0 to build relationships


Customeer advocate
listener and educator
world of control – corp has lost a huge amount of control – they can make a huge difference

role of evangelist can bring individuals and community along

Amongst the people – being a native as well as on the road

increaing numbers of ethnographers and anthropologists getitng into tech

everyone here will be talkign about users as if they are the other – we are different from them – we are different – we need to get inside the world of people who dont care and dont use all day every day

learn from it and respect it – there is a diff culture out there and be part of it and bring use to it

evangelist is not sales or marketing role – human face of the company – 3d embodiyment

online and offline – cross functional – not just role of the marketer – not solely a markeitng role
that individual has to have and feel comfortable and empowered across the company – HR, Marketing, corporate, CS

Internal as well as external – need to be able to interface with marketing and CS
not just outsiders –

foil for the company or a critic – say things your CEO doesnt want to hear
externally facing – biggest fan | internally biggest critic

“gone native” – off there on the other side – living in a middle of a bridge between the two

human skills

Catalyst (Starfish and the spider – decentralized awareness persistant landscape)
Partial Geek
Driven by relationships

catalyst connector role – need to connect and forge relationships

perceived egotistical evangelist isnt bad

working and thinking on the feet alot

pushing pushing

interesting balance – element to succeeding where good evangelists become as well known in the brands they are worknig with as their communities – is it for you or the company/product

if aligned to these values it is clear to what you are in service of

interesting tension to be explored –

conquistadors thought they were evangelists (ended up destroying the civ they visited – DeSoto)

geek vs partial geek – translating and human skills – you end up treading more lightly – very instructuve to think of the conversation and interactions

bringing your cult to the world that isnt read yet – evolution, interation and change

important – like porn – in it for their ego or corp ego – you know it when you see it

before you start an evangelism program – make sure you are aligned with where the company is
ask the tough questions up front

already dozens of bloggers around MS

that kind of face

transparency – len hasnt gotten a lot of credit for being a catalyst behind that – a lot of clarity around the bigger goal

Sometimes transactions dont matter

there is an exchange going on – its ok to admit that – but need to find respect

Key Concepts

Democratization of tools and access
The Live Web
Amateur culture
Increased individual influence
COntrol is out of control
let the seller beware
people are the message

Blogging and the role of marketing – now we can jump into the conversation
human face – corp blogs and ceo blogs – connector and curator

kind of person that can jump in – people are the message – markets and conversations of the cluetrain

they are paying you – respect and listen to them – relationships take work – take time, take effort – in it for the long haul

ANil hates the title
no better work yet
overtly religious analogy going on – look at people who practice and the ones most effective are not evangelists – they are witnesses – live the life you want others to experience

for those evangelizing – goal has to be to live the benefits – if we participate we will gain from it

the role of witnessing – diversion but important point – pounding the podium doesnt work

ideas to cover before break – using web2 to build relationships
1 be where your audience is – mentally and physicall – in the communities online – sometimes in the ugly parts of the web – hard time justifying you are working if that site is in your browser – translating into biz req will save time and trouble later

clean polished parts of the web not where the edge is

someone driven by other motivations will not spend time being detective

not into challenge

no its not

2. Offer something of value – not bribery – info is most valuable (inc connection), validation
a response saying I read what you said (no qual, not agreeing) – saying “I am with this company and are responsing to what you said – goes a long way – validation is huge
things you take for granted – is valuable

3. Use WHat You Got
decision making process of one initiative – put it out there for debat – means the world to those using the product or considering a purchase
share that part of the conversation “oh, you actually put thought into this”
dont have insight or respect of it

can get lost in transparency and authenticity

baby steps to talking in a different tone

not that difficult a transition to make

If youdidnt get your badge this AM – tables at bottom of escalator


Tekriti Turns 2!

Ashish, Manish, Guarav and the rest of the team at Tekriti just turned 2.

These guys are rockstars developers (shipping custom code, CMSs as well as their own project with Broadband Mechanics – PeopleAggregator – and have worked with me in the past on a couple of projects).

The real question is, will Halley and I get the cool t-shirts?!?!?!?!

Happy Birthday Fellas!

Isabel on Embracing the future with BigOldCos

Isabel Walcott blogs about big telcos trying to crush the VOIP (and other markets) while they are still infants. She is rightfully frustrated. Not because she is a huge fan of VOIP, but because she sees it as both a ‘DUH’ move on their part and another restriction on the users.

In my opinion, its about control. Any market leader/monopoly/entrenched player wants control. They want to control the eyeballs, lives, assets under management, click thrus, attention – whatever they think they ‘own’ they want to control.. They want to control the conversation. They want to control what you say about them. They want to control what you do on their networks. They want to control their revenue model (at all costs).

GTE was a client of mine in the 90s. Before they merged with Bell Atlantic. They LOVED being a phone company. The data guys LOVED doing data stuff. I would routinely hear guys say something to the effect “I’ve been doing this for years and the business has never been this hot”. The problem was, after 100 years of creating the technology and owning the wires and everything you could do over them, THE GAME WAS CHANGING AND THEY REALIZED THEY HAD NO CONTROL (caps intended).

Their business model, the revenue model and their margins are being squeezed, and disruptive tech/behavior like the web, VOIP, blogging, and napster all violate their control. BigOldCo’s play catch-up, add new DRM or controls, get their lobbyists to pay off the legislature to maintain their monopoly and move on to finding new ways of getting back to the good old days.

And some pissed off user finds a way around it.

Cluetrain doesnt jive with BAU (bizness as usual). They get it (dont think for a second they dont get it) – the difference is THEY DONT LIKE IT. And they are as active in looking for a way around our _disruptions_ as we are in circumventing their controls.

I have more faith in the people on the network (us) than the people running the network (them).

So to sum up – yeah, I think Isabel is right – it is ridiculous.

The Rise of the Global Microbrand

Hugh Macleod spends a little time today discussing the Global Mcrobrand. I love Hugh’s commentary – funny witty and his illustrations are a riot (and not always work safe!). Whats really interesting is when he talks about Stormhoek and English Cut. It is less advertising and more conversational. I actually look forward to reading about the insights into the world of Saville Row (which anyone will tell you, I LOVE FASHION), or how Hugh is introducing folks to Stormhoek. And I have added English Cut to my OPML list.

I dont feel like I am being sold to (b/c he is completely upfront about his efforts), and if I don’t like it I SKIP TO THE NEXT POST OR FEED.

In this post Hugh talks about his overall idea of the Global Microbrand:

A small, tiny brand, that “sells” all over the world.

With the internet, of course, a global microbrand is easier to create than ever before. But they’ve existed for a while. Imagine a well-known author or painter, selling his work all over the world. Or a small whisky distillery in Scotland. Or a small cheese maker in rural France, whose produce is exported to Paris, London, Tokyo etc. Ditto with a violin maker in Italy. A classical guitar maker in Spain. A commercial sign maker in New England. Or a sheet metal entrepreneur in the U.K.

Blogs are word of mouth. Period. We find blogs through voices or ideas that we like (ty linkhopping!) and if we find them valuable, we continue reading, watching, and discussing.

Cooking as Code

Great interview with Alton Brown from Food Channel’s Good Eats on Brian’s Belly.

Brown’s is my favorits show on Food Network, hands-down (Mon-Fri at 7pm). He has even gotten covered on Slashdot.

“What I do like is adapting vernacular. It is not that I’m a computer geek, it’s that I’m obsessed with different sub-culture vernacular and it just so happens that the computer industry and culture has a lot of great terminologies that they have invented… and so I adapt them. It’s not because I am a part of them, although I think I understand something of that brain box. It’s been said that I think of recipes as open code, and I like that because with open code the opportunity exists for constant deviation, constant evolution, constant revolution… and I’d like to see that in cooking.”

Great interview (and I just subscribed to Brian’s feed). Even Alton Brown has a blog (hit the Rants and Raves section of his site – he still needs to get an RSS feed).

Link to the article here: