TPN & News Corp bring you showBUZZ

I’m excited to announce the first episode of showBUZZ, a thrice-weekly (that’s three times a week) celebrity gossip podcast that I’m producing and co-hosting for News.com.au. My co-host Justine Parker, Deputy Entertainment Editor for News.com.au, and I dissect the top celebrity gossip stories of the day in a 15-minute show. Check it out here!  At this stage we’re thinking of it as a pilot and hopefully it’ll be hugely successful and will turn into a regular show.

US Newspaper Circulation In Massive Decline

I’ve enjoyed an interesting day at ANZA Tech in Santa Clara. We’ve spent the day being coached by Dan Sapp on presentation style. I’ve always been pretty skeptical about the need for such training for someone like myself who has presented a lot over the years. I thought it would ruin my natural style, the same way singing lessons often ruin a previously natural voice. But lately I’ve realized that it isn’t enough to just get up and talk to a room full of people – unless you change their behaviour in the way you intended, it’s a wasted opportunity. So I learned some great tips today and feel like I’m coming out of it a better presenter.

Anyhoo… The New York Times has an article today about the increasing decline of newspaper circulation in the USA. And before Rob Irwin starts writing his rebuttal about how their web numbers are up, the NYT has already anticipated him:

Revenues from Web sites are rising quickly as well, but they account for only a small portion of overall revenues, and it could be decades before Internet revenues exceed those from the printed editions of major newspapers.

This has always been my point. As readers (and listeners and viewers) move to the web, the underlying economic viability of the old media is increasingly under threat. Why? One reason is that they have a LOT more competition online. Most old media companies suddenly move from competing with a handful of local companies in their own region, to competing with a globe full of companies and, increasingly, citizen media, for the attention of their audience.

What happens to these old media companies when the audience minutes they own declines? Revenues decline. And then? Layoffs. Cutbacks. And then? Some of the people they layoff, writers, editors, camera operators, directors, producers, etc, start their own online company, creating even more competitin.

Stir, repeat.

For us lowly start-ups, it’s all growth, all upside. For the old media, it’s all downside.

GDAY WORLD #161 – Digital Hollywood Part 2

[Discuss this show in the forums]

G’Day folks, just thought I’d wrap up my impressions of the last two days of Digital Hollywood from my current base in Carmel, California. The last couple of days were very different from the first as most of the folks on the panels represented the big TV networks, movie studios, music labels, mobile carriers and the big search engines. As you’ll hear in the show, I found most of the sessions to be pretty samey. The traditional companies are all saying the same things and they all sound like they were created in a Dilbert random buzzword generation engine – yeah, we’re going to re-purpose our existing content/network/users/portal to run over 3g/ipods/mobiles and we’ll monetize it by product placement/advertising/premium features and we’ll still rule the planet, everyone return to your normal seats, we are in control of your entertainment.

What I should have heard (but didn’t) was “wow this is mving pretty fast, we’re not really sure what we’re going to do, all we know is that we need to re-invent ourselves as a company from the ground up before we become mostly irrelevant”.

If you think that would be a crazy thing for a media company executive to say, go read Wired’s interview with Rupert Murdoch.

I’m going to be in Carmel (see map) for a couple of days then I’ll be heading to San Francisco for the ANZA Tech conference.

DVD Pick Of The Week – “Weeds” Series One (2005)

How come I have not heard of this show before??? My man in Carmel, Steve the Witness, forced me to watch this today and it is brilliant TV. Here’s the set-up for “Weeds“:

After her husband’s unexpected death and subsequent financial woes, suburban mom Nancy Botwin (Mary-Lousie Parker) embraces a new profession: the neighborhood pot dealer. As it seems like everyone secretly wants what she’s selling — even city councilman Doug Wilson — Nancy is faced with keeping her family life in check and her enterprise a secret from her best friend/PTA president, Celia Hodes.

I got hooked on Mary-Louise Parker when she played Amy Gardner in West Wing and it’s great to see her get her own show, especially something as brilliant as this. If you haven’t checked it out, do it.

Tech Support – Adobe Audition

I just installed Adobe Audition 1.5 on my laptop (I usually use it on my desktop) and and I’m having trouble exporting to mp3. Everytime I try the resulting file is about 300mb. I’ve spent 30 minutes tweaking every setting I can find and nothing seems to help. Any bright ideas?

The 20 Minute Rule

I’ve had a few people send me this article in the NY Times recently so I thought it was worth linking to. With my recent theme of how limited the funding options are in Australia, a lot of people were asking me “why can’t you get US venture capital from Australia?”

Meet the “20-minute rule” that guides fateful decisions in Silicon Valley. Craig Johnson, managing director of Concept2Company Ventures, a venture capital firm in Palo Alto, Calif., who has 30 years of experience in early-stage financings, said he knew many venture capitalists who adhered to this doctrine: if a start-up company seeking venture capital is not within a 20-minute drive of the venture firm’s offices, it will not be funded.