Advertising head says TV will suffer

The head of the second-largest ad agency in the world, WPP Group, says broadcasters are under “severe pressure” from the Internet:

“Television broadcasters face “severe pressure” as advertisers abandon traditional media in favour of the internet, Sir Martin Sorrell, head of WPP, the world’s second-biggest advertising company, told The Times.

The chief executive said that the quickening pace at which advertisers are switching their budgets to online has created a “fundamental shift” in advertising that would change irreversibly the way in which broadcasters
such as ITV and Channel 4 make money.

Sir Martin said: “Television is under severe pressure at the moment from the internet. There has been a fundamental shift and the pace will quicken, but predictions of a depression in traditional media have gone too far. Television advertising is not going to disappear. It still has pulling power, but the balance will switch.”

Hey ISP — Joost give me more bits

fibre optic.jpgSteve O’Hear — who also writes for ZDNet on social media — has a great post up at Last100 about how bandwidth-stingy Internet Service Providers threaten to stall many online-video apps such as Joost by throttling the download speeds that their users get. He looks at how some ISPs cut back your bandwidth after you’ve downloaded a certain amount per month, which with video isn’t difficult to exceed, and how some put a cap on downloads period. Many ISPs also use “bandwidth shaping” to restrict the flow of peer-to-peer apps such as Joost and Skype.

This is an issue that is going to become more and more important as Joost and Babelgum and other peer-to-peer video apps become widespread. One thing Steve doesn’t mention is that many ISPs also have ridiculously tiny upload speeds, and this is just as much of a threat to peer-to-peer apps. It’s no good to have a big fat download pipe if the upload is a tiny drinking straw.


Of course, if you live in an area where Verizon’s FiOS is available, you can get 30 megabits download (no details on uploads or whether they use bandwidth throttling). As Cynthia Brumfield notes at IPDemocracy, there’s no such thing as too much bandwidth.

mesh 15 Minutes of Fame winners

As my friends and fellow mesh organizers Mark Evans and Stuart MacDonald have mentioned here and here — as well as the mesh blog — the winners of the “15 Minutes of Fame” feature have been chosen, and it is a pretty impressive group. Each will get five minutes to pitch their startup or service. The press release we issued this morning is here.

May 30 – 11:30 a.m. to noon

Octopz – An online collaboration service for text, video and audio
DemoFuse – Create interactive tours for your Web site
FiveLimes – A community based around eco-friendly products

May 31, 11:30 a.m. to noon

Conceptshare – An online collaboration tool for designers
SneakerPlay – A social network for sneaker enthusiasts
Wild Apricot – A website management service for non-profits

Congratulations to all. And thanks to all those who didn’t get chosen too — we had a great response and some really excellent applicants.

Desktop Tower Defense totally rulez

This isn’t really Web 2.0 or social media or anything like that (depending on your definition, of course) but for some reason I just love this story from GigaOm’s James Wagner Au about the rise of Desktop Tower Defense. Paul Preece’s Flash mini-game has exploded in a truly viral way, to the point where he is getting 20 million page views a month. That could translate into six figures in revenue, and the hosting costs are minimal. Isn’t the Web great?


What would you ask Mike Arrington?

michael-arrington2.jpgThose who follow this blog will probably know that I’m doing a “keynote conversation” for the mesh conference this week with Michael Arrington, founder and editor of TechCrunch and pretty much the go-to guy when it comes to all things Web 2.0 and startup oriented (for anyone who hasn’t been to mesh, we don’t have keynote presentations, we have conversations — fireside chat-style — in which one of the mesh organizers interviews the keynote and then we have a question and answer session). So here’s my question to all of you: I know what I want to ask Michael, but what would you ask him if you could? Post your suggestions as a comment, and I will do my best to work them into the keynote conversation on Wednesday.