Thursday, July 20, 2006

"Nonmarket production"

"There's no Wikipedia entry for "Nonmarket Production." Now recurse this! . . . Think of the (anonymous) fame and (nonmarket) fortune for the author . . . if you write such an article, please let me know."

I found it a great challenge.
In my silly and primitive way I always believed that the aim of shopping was to BUY things, things that you needed or fancied.
Today I know that shopping is a social-as opposed to commercial- activity and its aim is to help the shopkeeper to get rid of his junk.

That is exactly why a "nonmarket production" should find its place in the Market as well as in the Wikipedia.

In today's world very often the goal is not reaching something, but doing it.
As, "I didn't compete for winning, I did it just for partecipating..."

In the same way evolves the shopping experience.

Shopping begins with queueing.
First of all to be a modern shopper you must be fond of queueing. It has become a widespread entertainment.
Thanks to technology you do all your tasks in a third of the time, but then you have the need to find something to do to kill the time you saved.

A man in a queue is a fair man; he is minding his own business; he lives and lets live; he practises a duty while waiting to practise his own rights, and most of everything he can spend some of his spare time while waiting to spend his spare money.

When your turn comes at last in the shop, if you are a real "nomarket product" shopper, disregard the queue behind you.
They would feel let down if you deprived them of their right to wait and be virtuous.
You MUST NOT utter a word about the goods you wish to buy.
Ask the shopkeeper about his health, his wife, his children, his dogs...
Remember: you are there not to get something, but to DO something.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The new commercial

"People won't be content with goods and services: they will want them wrapped up in an experience - particularly a 'games experience'."
People clearly enjoy participating and the successful entertainment is the one which involves the consumer.
We will go from the "passive audience" to the "active audience".
That is one of the reason why the Internet was and is so successful. Because of interactivity.
The reader is not a reader only, it is in the same time the writer and the producer.
The listener is not the listener only, he is the talker too.
So the future TV will have to be Interactive TV.
Where the audience can have his saying, being it a mere vote or a thought or whatever.
Not just a pushing of a button, but his full opinion or his voice.
Also in commercials interactivity will play a big role. Not a passive consuming experience, but an active online sale.
People want to be entertained and the new commercial will have to be entertainment wrapping the product.
The consumer will more and more identify himself with the actor and doing so using the same products.
The brainwashing will be more and more sophisticated, using new psychological means.
It won’t be anymore: use this because of that.
It will be: use this and you will be me…
Time and status influences what people buy. Individuals want to fit in with people they think are similar, or they aspire to be like.
In particular, consumption can be a means to improve your class position – hence the appeal of celebrity-based advertising.
Consumers can imagine that they are moving up the social ladder by becoming more like their favourite celebrity. By making celebrities out of ordinary people, reality TV reinforces the message, 'Anyone can be a celeb.' Or “anyone can look good or be good using this or that…”
And the killing application will be the Interactivity:

Do you want it?
Just click.....

Monday, July 10, 2006

Relationship age

"Connectedness is second in our 'top ten'. We have entered a 'relationship age' in which interactions between people are more important than at any time since the industrial revolution.
You only have to walk down the street to see how people are constantly talking on their phones. The mobile revolution has enabled friends to be constantly present with each other. "

People talk a lot, that is without any doubt.
But that "talking a lot" doesn't really mean we are living in a "relationship age".
Evidently talking doesn't improve relationships.
On the contrary, if people talked less and thought more and worked more, in my opinion relationships among people would be much better.

It is true, "You only have to walk down the street to see how people are constantly talking on their phones" but at this regard, let me report examples of conversation:

Cold, isn't it? (or warm, isn't it, depending on the season)
Isn't it awful (or nice)?
The snow (or the sun)....
Isn't it terrible?(gorgeous)
It's disastrous, so icy ...
Personally I hate Winter (or love Summer)


I am on the train, at this station...
The train is late...
Outside is raining...

And they go on for ages, for the only sake of the mobile telephone provider, talking a lot for saying nothing.
That proves that we would be a much better "relationship society" if we hadn't to feed those parasytes of mobile providers.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Classes and Equality

"Status influences what people buy. Individuals want to fit in with people they think are similar, or they aspire to be like.
In particular, consumption can be a means to improve your class position – hence the appeal of celebrity-based advertising.
Consumers can imagine that they are moving up the social ladder by becoming more like their favourite celebrity. By making celebrities out of ordinary people, reality TV reinforces the message, 'Anyone can be a celeb.'
Consumption disguises class by allowing individuals to focus on specific friendship groups and other networks they identify with. They can avoid the dissonance of not being in as high a class as they want by adopting lifestyles that fit in with their peers and pretending that class no longer matters – 'I'm just an ordinary bloke.' 'We're all middle class now.'
As individuals compete to show that they have the coolest lifestyle, new media technologies will quickly become 'cool barometers', continuing a well-established trend. Mobile phone sales, for example, are now driven by style more than functionality. "

We all talk-and talk a great deal- of upper, middle, and working classes.
We also talk of upper-middle, lower-middle classes and more recently they have started mentioning a top-workingclass- just to fit in between the middle-working class and the lower-middleclass.
This, of course, makes us all fully conscious of how pityfully inadequate our language is to describe the other 120 clearly defined castes and the 413 sub-castes of our society.
What about the lower-middle-upper layer of the lower -upper-middle-class?
While all this goes on, we all remain staunch believers in equlity.
Equality means that you are just as good as the next man, but the next man is not half as good as you are

The global consolidation of media

"This will increase worries about global dominance by a handful of media giants.
'Who's pulling our strings?' will be a pressing concern.
National governments will be able to limit the share of domestic TV owned by a global company. But the company's planet-wide reach (on the Internet) will give it huge advantages over its smaller competitors in bidding for rights to show sporting programmes, for example, or in producing blockbuster programmes. Effective competition will come from global rivals. Companies in the middle will increasingly struggle. Will governments seek greater control over media giants through international agreements?
At the same time, individuals will be empowered in new ways. They will have more choice and more power. For example, internet-TV will create global audiences for niche programmes, turning highly specialised tastes into viable markets. Alongside your favourite soap, you will be able to watch a Chinese documentary on an obscure herbal medicine, a series of programmes for fans of MG sports cars and a broadcast from your neighbourhood.
Individuals will not have to rely on established news channels. Blogs for instance are now providing rival sources of information, and other options will emerge over the next 20 years. The existence of other possibilities will force media companies to be highly responsive to their audiences.
Collectively, individuals will have considerable influence over even the largest corporation because they will have so many alternatives. The interplay between media and individual will remain highly complex. "

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

How to be Aristocratic

A friend of mine married a very ugly man.
But he was "So Aristocratic".

If you cannot be "arstocratic", but you want to look "aristocratic", I will explain you how to.

You must never complain.
Complaining is very "un-aristocratic".
If you are kept one hour in a shop, if a bus conductor or an employee is rude to you, if a waiter brings you food ice-cold, you must keep your mouth shut.
Sometimes in a shop, in offices or some other public place, an offensive or sarcastic remark may be made about you in the third person, but you just do not hear it.
The stiff upper lip is the "aristocratic" way.
Only low level people will make a row, protest loudly or call for the manager.
Should you be so misguided as to complain, or at least murmur, public opinion will instantly turn against you:
"Who does he think he is?"
The waiter may pour tomato juice down your collar and you exclaim:"Ouch!"
Someone will be sure to remark:
"It's difficult to please some people"

So do not complain. Never complain.
Whatever happens remember the "aristocratic" slogan:
"It's one of those things"
When your brand new toasting machine goes up in flames and toasts you instead of your bread, you nod:
"It's one of those things".
And the matter is closed.
Apart from being utterly un-aristocratic, there is another reason for not opening your mouth in Italy.
They do not even hear the complaints; their ears are not turned to them.

Infact, the Italians Institution take good care that the Italians learn how to be "aristocratic".
Whatever happens, you can be sure that should you be so enraged as to loose your temper and be tempted to look "ordinary" they won't give you the slightest chance.
There is no address, no telephone number, no mane, no responsible.
Just cool down and learn the lesson.
Italy is a very "Aristocratic" country.
Only the Dutch and the Albanians (with a few odd Czechoslovaks, Germans and suchlike thrown in) make rows or protest loudly.

Monday, July 03, 2006

More on IPTV

"IPTV does require advances in infrastructure. Even today, distribution or communication mechanisms used in TV and the Internet are significantly different. They've been slowly moving toward each other, but are far from convergence. The TV structure, whether broadcast, cable, or satellite, is primarily based on the push metaphor where all the programs are pushed to the user. The only choice a user has is to change the channel or to turn off the TV."

The major change required isn't really the infrastructure, however. It's making the tools robust yet easy to use. It is making ends meet.
That is both compressing the video content and delivering everywhere high speed Internet.
Both are already possible and feasable.
What is not possible and hence feasable right now is the OK from where it could be made possible.
Monopolies are hard to mine, even harder to destroy.
People commonly talk about the convergence of communication and computing.
IPTV is the convergence of communication, computing, and content.
The new video content will be like pages on the web.
It will explode because of the millions being both users and producers.