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Idea IS the format

The occasional downtime of Daniel W. E. Light
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Monday, 19 November 2007

A million audiences of one

Met up with pre-eminent bloggers Neville Hobson and Trevor Cook for a bite of lunch yesterday. Neville worked with us on the virtual press junket PPC co-ordinated for "300" back in March (up for a BIMA in the category of Innovation a week on Thursday) and was up in town to speak at an event organised by Mantra, my sister-in-law's PR firm, seeking to understand the nature of Web 2.0 in relation to corporate communications and public relations.

The lunch was the first time Neville and Trevor had met in the flesh, despite the two of them having a digital friendship extending back over several years. Both of their blogs are far loftier and better travelled than mine, but I enjoyed being able to use the example of WEATHERMAN to illustrate how blogging had worked as a way of sharing an idea with a specifically chosen audience of six. The web is often seen as a great way to reach an audience of millions, whereas - as somebody at yesterday's event pointed out - Web 2.0 is all about communicating with 'a million audiences of one'.

Another blogger acquaintance, Hugh Macleod, has been experimenting with social media as a means to raise the profile of a wine label he is involved with - Stormhoek - to good effect. I managed to find their Pinotage in Tesco on Sunday, and picked up a couple of bottles. With my palate it's much of a muchness whether I drink one £4.99 bottle of wine or another, so it was great to be able to try a wine I had a relationship with, however obscure. I'm thinking this is the essence of what Hugh is driving at when he talks about social objects, conversation and decommodification (which he does. A lot.) As my friend James will surely testify, after despatching an unholy amount of unusually fine and criminally surplus burgundy on Sunday evening (I suggested that he bathe in it) there can't be many objects more 'social' than red wine.

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posted by Dan Light  # 21:51
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