Tuesday Jan 05, 2010

Social Media Week London - Feb 1-5th 2010

Hello, Social Media Week London Is Go

London Night Bus by doug88888Yes, hello, this is London calling. Excuse the Eurovision-style pun…in a foretaste of our preparations for the 2012 Olympics, things have started out slowly but are rapidly swinging into gear.

It’s going to be an exciting, busy, thought-provoking week’s worth of events, taking place 1st-5th Feb 2010, which will bring together the leading thinkers, organisers, movers and shakers across the social media spectrum for events including from panel sessions to networking events, breakfast briefings and more.

Building on the success of the first Social Media Week, which took place in New York last year, this time around there’s six cities across three continents taking part. There’s plenty of opportunities to get involved, whether organising an event, helping out on the day, spreading the word, providing a venue, sponsoring Social Media Week, but above all, we hope you’ll come along to the events themselves.

Chinwag, the lead organiser for Social Media Week London, is working with a group of fab advisors and Toby Daniels and the global team in New York. We’re pulling together what we hope will be a engaging and varied week of exploration into social media’s impact across business, media, the arts, politics, society and no doubt, other things we haven’t thought of yet.

We’ll be posting more news on this blog as well as through through Twitter and Facebook. Keep your eyes peeled and if you’d like to get involved, do get in touch.


Monday Nov 23, 2009

Seven Ways to Get Your Startup Noticed by the Media

When you officially launch your startup and send out a flurry of press releases, the silence can be deafening while you wait for the phone to ring and reporters to call you. Here are some tips to improve your chances of getting noticed by the media.

1) Make sure your press release stands out, but don't overdo it. A clear, concise, and brief press release that gets your message across without a lot of excess verbiage[Read More]

Friday Oct 16, 2009

CodeSpace @ Digital Hollywood

There's a new addition to Digital Hollywood this year, it's called CodeSpace and Sun Startup Essentials has helped put it together. In brief:

The Challenge:
To Build a New Media Product or Service in 36 Hours at Digital Hollywood
Real-Time -Real-Life Development of a Broadband-Mobile Entertainment-Media-Technology App

The Prizes: The winning team members will receive over $5000 in cash and prizes like the Adobe Creative Suite, Adobe Flash Media Server, Sun Hosting Services, Cloud Hosting from Amazon, Creative Services from Blue Monitor, and CDN services from China Cache.

If you're going to be in the LA area next week, definitely come check it out!

Wednesday Sep 09, 2009

Cheers to Startup Drinks Toronto

Startup Drinks, a movement that is held in cities across Canada and the US. The goal, to connect people in startups with each other over drinks in a casual atmosphere.  This kind of event provides the startup community a chance to discuss what they’re working on, what kind of problems they may need help with and what they can do for one another.
Justin Cumby had the pleasure of attending Startup Drinks recently in Toronto at C’est What?.

Greeted by the sounds of chatter, laughter and glasses coming together, it was evident the cozy venue was providing a comfortable atmosphere for startups to talk with one another over drinks. Some familiar faces in attendance were: Bryan Watson (NACO and CEO Fusion), Richard Reiner (Enomoly and Angel Investor with the Ryerson Angel Network), and Mike McDerment (FreshBooks) among others. Also in attendance were many leading edge Toronto startups.  Plenty of conversations were had. Some notable discussions for me included one about accelerator programs that are available for startups here in Canada and how new businesses can take on a university intern through the MITACS Accelerate Program and only pay half the cost. Another discussion was how those in the industry are undervaluing social media. James Standen from Datamartist and I talked about how the social media movement is yet to be used to its full potential. That consumer information that was never available to businesses (or was but for a high cost) is now available for free on networks such as Twitter and Facebook.

I remember thinking “what a fantastic opportunity for startups to get connected and stay that way.”
My thanks to the organizers for creating chances like this for people in the startup culture to connect with each other. I would recommend Startup Drinks for anybody who wants to get more involved in this community and network! 

Thursday Jul 30, 2009

Sun Startup Essentials at Twiistup VI

Connecting people from technology, media, & entertainment. July 30 & 31.

The event features an eclectic stage agenda representing leading innovators and 10 startups chosen to ‘showoff’ their products & services to influential bloggers, fellow tech-heads, investors, the media and those interested in learning about what’s hot in tech.

Unlike traditional conferences, Twiistup mixes it up with tunes, video, beverages, swag and the unexpected.

Jason Calacanis, Brooke Burke, Brian Solis, Chamillionaire, Dave McClure, Taryn Southern, and many others.

Stay tuned for the next installment of http://www.sun.com/startupessentials/spotlight.jsp 

Wednesday Jun 17, 2009

5 Things Sesame Street Can Teach You About Breakthrough Blogging

I came across this interesting article recently, comparing Sesame Street and blogging and I found the comparisons compelling and interesting indeed, so much so I would like to share it with you. In fact this site has some amazingly quick but interesting articles that may help you grow your prescence out on the internet and build a strong brand for your organisation.

They taught us about sharing and the letter Q. They taught us to jump rope in Spanish and how to count to 10. They taught us about life in the city, diversity, and the true love of a rubber ducky.

But did you know that Sesame Street actually has lots of lessons about how to be a better blogger?

There’s a reason Sesame Street is the longest-running children’s show in history. Actually, there are (at least) five reasons. And you can apply each of these to your blog, to create something that’s memorable, effective, and maybe even loved.

To read the full article go HERE

Sunday Feb 15, 2009

Fav.or.it Secures Funding - Pushing into corporate blog tracking

Feeds and commenting aggregator fav.or.it has closed a new round of funding totaling nearly £500,000. The bulk of that has come from angel investors but £125,000 came from the Finance South East fund, a government-backed fund set up to support startup businesses. The funds will be used to expand the development team and also hire a dedicated marketing and sales force.

fav.or.it has thus far been designed to simplify interaction with news sites and blogs. But it’s now adding a new string to its business model: making it easier for companies to track what people are saying about them on blogs, social networks and Twitter. However, this won’t be brand tracking. Instead, brands would be able to pay for channels that aggregate the conversation around their brand/product and use it to engage with customers.

Launched in beta in October 2007 and public from June last year, fav.or.it - founded by CEO Nick Halstead - aggregates content from thousands of blogs and websites and streams them into a network of vertical channels,  having been a Startup Essential member since then, startup essentials worked together to help grow fav.or.it  gaining PR on sun.com and in the FT as well as many public quotes in other mainstream press. Nick has recently moved to MySQL Enterprise to make certain he is ready for the growth and scaling the business will need over the coming months, and is prepared for that now.

Halstead has also launched a new property, FeedBroker. This separates some of the functionality into a new site which would allow for licensing feeds external to fav.or.it. Feedbroker lets content owners specify terms under which their content may be used and allows them to take payments on a pay-per-post basis, for instance. In other words, fav.or.it wil share ad revenues with publishers, so it’s not just taking the content and re-publishing it.

Friday Dec 12, 2008

Even more FREE hosting & Bebo's Developer Challenge

Bebo's Streisan Chapman joined us at the Sun sponsored Facebook Garage London earlier in November to discuss Bebo's developer and social opportunities.  Missed it? You can catch the video here:

Adding to the valued partnerships and great offers to the community, we are happy to announce yet another FREE hosting offering, this time for Bebo's developers.  Go here for more information.  

If that was not enough, Sun is also happy to provide the prizes for the best new engaging Bebo application. The judges are high profile bloggers and entrepreneurs, Frank Gruber, Dave McClure, and Jesse Stay!


Click the image for all the information - but a particular highlight is:

"The Contest is open only to legal residents of the 50 United States (including the District of Columbia), Canada (excluding Quebec) and the United Kingdom who are 18 years of age or older at time of entry and are registered members of Bebo.com. "

Good Luck!



Friday Nov 21, 2008

Wikipedia will run on Sun storage servers

Wikipedia (a project within Wikimedia.org) choses Sun Microsystems to gear up for video and rich media. Have a look for the CNET interview. or the Market watch coverage. Wikipedia with it's 250 million] unique visitors per month is a nice case to document how to build a scaling web architecture with Sun Fire X4500 storage servers, Apache, MySQL, ZFS and Solaris.

Friday Sep 19, 2008

Guest Post - Why is the UK not getting social media ?

Three things got me annoyed yesterday:

1) Not being at Web2expo - i'll get over that, i'm trying to get to Berlin ;-)
2) Preparing for a practical workshop on blogging only to realise that 75% of the time is going to be spent explaining what tags are and rss is rather than discussing how they can be of benefit to a business.
3) Control freaks - people who think that a little bit of knowledge think they know it all (won't go into that one!)

In particular, number two got me thinking that as a country, we are woefully under-educated when it comes to social media. Why are we still having conversations about what these tools are rather than what they can do for you?

I'd like to throw a few thoughts into the hat and see what people like Neville, Stephen, Steve, Becky, Will, Dave, Robin, Hugh, Jas, Stuart and maybe even Chris, Brian, Geoff and Pete have to say:

Is online social interaction (the principle of people/customers meeting online to share things and meet each other) SO far beyond people's grasp they just do not get what happens and what people do?

The idea that without your work hat on, "I don't use the internet like that , so why would my customers?"

Does the rate of change/growth of new social media tools scare IT departments or marketing/pr teams that anything they may decide to adopt may be obsolete in a few months? What about the sheer number of tools they could use? Is it realistic to expect a marketeer to keep track of everything that goes on?


Are we  our own worst enemies? Do we like to talk XML, php, css and other jargon too much that we actually alienate the very people we are hoping to adopt the tools we talk about?


This relates nicely in fact, to point number three. People who have traditionally been in total control of their customers (when their customers didn't know any better) are now petrified that they can't control what their customers are saying. Burying their heads in the sand won't work.

Previous tools such as websites, direct mail, press ads and email were great at telling customers what the brand wanted them to hear but now marketeers have to get their heads around the fact that those same recipients are talking back – just that they are telling other customers not them!

Tone of Voice

After decades of talking AT customers, brands are now having to talk TO customers. How do you talk to people you have spent years ignoring what they say? How should you speak to them? Learning THAT takes either a lot of listening, training or plenty of both.

Social Media Tools are "a phase" of internet growth

Several years ago (early 90's), when working for a large mail order company, the whole business began gearing up for this "internet" thing that was coming.

HR were booking training sessions for people like there was no tomorrow , business-wide email was starting to roll-out and you could sense that people knew something big and important was going to happen. 15 years and 1 billion online users later - they were right.

The impression I get of what many of us might call the proverbial "sea-change" in the internet is that social media and its associated tools are nothing more than evolution rather than revolution.

I'll end with some links to a couple of great posts, (from Suw who is organising the blogger outreach for the Berlin Web2 Expo and the legendary BL Ochman)all around exactly what I am talking about above as well as the Chris's 12 reasons why he thinks the UK isn't blogging or adopting social media tools:

1 - You don't understand why you'd want a business blog. Neither does your CEO.

2 - You are the CEO. And you're not going to allow your minions to blog.

3 - You think it is too risky to allow your colleagues to write blog posts.

4 - Your PR agency thinks blogging is a bad move.

5 - You mentioned something to the techies. It is in their development schedule.

6 - You haven't figured out who will contribute to the blog, or what you will write about.

7 - You can't see any benefits whatsoever. It would be a waste of time.

8 - You don't see any return on investment. It would be a loss leader. We don't do loss leaders.

9 - You have no clue about how to set up a blog.

10 - You think blogging is all hype / a passing fad / for kids.

11 - You are happy to ignore blog activity in the US. The US is a totally different environment for this sort of thing.

12 - You think blogging isn't right for your business.

This is a guest post taken from Paul's Blog  Blending the mix, Paul is a Client Services Manager at Digital Marketing Agency KMP. Part of his role is  to understand how best our clients can embrace social networks and blogging.

Tuesday Jul 31, 2007




 This is a company Ive been having some discussions with lately, and really interested in where this echnology is going...in terms of the commercial aspect of the back end application. Allowing data manipulation at a real granular level, which would allow large organisations some interesting views of their data.

So go to the beta site now and some more details below.

Clipweaver allows you to do a lot more than just
upload and play both video and audio.
With Clipweaver you can interactivly create clios
any video or audio upload, whether it is your
own or a shared media on the site.
These clips can be combined to create lists, to create whole new video
and audio streams, or to embed them directly into text stories.


Connecting the Startup Essentials community with all the events, information and resources required for them to grow and scale.


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