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Posts Tagged ‘Anil Dash’

Michael Wolf and Anil Dash Team Up To Launch Media Consulting Venture

activate_logo.pngThe former president of MTV Networks and a high-profile blogger are launching Activate, a consulting firm that will advise media, entertainment, communications, Internet and tech companies.

PaidContent calls the pairing—between Michael Wolf, who has old-school experience at big established brands (like MTVN) and at places like Booz Allen Hamilton and McKinsey & Co., and Anil Dash, who once served as the chief evangelist at Six Apart, which makes Movable Type and TypePad—one that “is sure to set off a round of ‘say what’s’.” But apparently both principals know entrepreneur Jack Hidary, who played matchmaker when he heard what Wolf was seeking.

Activate is based in New York but the duo plans to open a Silicon Valley location within the next year.

More: Media vets Wolf and Dash launch Activate (Hollywood Reporter)

Ex-MTVN, Six Apart Execs Wolf And Dash Pair Up (paidContent)

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Being A Twitter Suggested User ‘Makes No Difference’

Consider this a warning about Twitter ‘gurus’ and “increase your followers” spam:

Anil Dash, blogger and self-described geek, was added to Twitter’s list of suggested users to follow shown to people joining the site for the first time. It surprised him, because “I’d like to think I’m not a terrible tweeter…but I’m obviously not a better tweeter than 99 million other Twitter users, I never asked to be on the list, and it’s never been explained to me why I was chosen.”

He goes on to explain in his blog that most of his new followers probably treat his non-sequitorish updates “like a notice that their new Windows computer has cleaned up the icons on their desktop.” Something random, unexplainable, and nonsensical. Which means: “Being on Twitter’s suggested user list makes no appreciable difference in the amount of retweets, replies, or clicks that I get.”

Why? Because the extra followers (sometimes 2-3 a second) don’t care about him, don’t understand him, and don’t know why they were asked to follow him. He’s noise.

This reminds us of the Wired piece from last month where writer Evan Ratliff tried to “disappear” (while still remaining on the grid, somewhat—it’s not like he hightailed it to the mountains to live off possum and wild berries). As part of his new, incognito persona, he created a fake name with a fake Twitter account. (Of course.) And to make his Twitter account look real (aka “have a lot of followers”): “I set about finding people who would accept my friendship automatically, and soon my profile was overrun with multilevel marketers and inspirational speakers.”

Then what are you left with?

Someone who can give you a job? Someone who will buy your products? Or a meaningless number to trumpet around?

Publishing’s Next Edition

What follows is a (partial) transcript of the Publishing’s Next Edition panel at the Circus, moderated by Dan Costa, executive editor of PCMag.com, featuring Anil Dash of Six Apart, Eileen Gittins, founder of Blurb, and Rob Samuels, director of mobile product development for NYTimes.com.

EG: What is the audience for a 1000 page book? Should that go into print? Kindle? Why isn’t that book serialized?

AD: The barrier shouldn’t be whether someone who’s never heard of that topic decides if there’s a market for it. Being a creator can be enough to get someone to respond to it. If you’re willing to invest in something you probably have enough passion to make that a success.

DC: What is the technology that makes print-on-demand possible?
EG: FakeSteveJobs turned his blog into a book overnight. We have created “slurpers” that slurp content from blogs. Questions: Can we make money on each book and will I go to jail? (Copyright is complicated–Blurb doesn’t police content.)

DC: What advice would you give to my daughter who is about to graduate and is going into the media business?

EG: Marry well. (laughter) No longer is the day where you’ll walk into the NYTimes and work your way up? Build your brand. Everybody who works at Blurb is an entrepreneur because we’re not expecting lifetime servitude.

RS: Become acquainted with the current device trends. Find out how your experience is relevant to social networking. Learn about the technology that may be outside your comfort zone as an aspiring journalist.

AD: only the old people are worried about technology. the thing you have in spades in 22 is an irrational passion for things that seem like the most important thing in the world. find these things you’re that passionate about. give voice to them however you can. If you have this thing you love beyond all reason and you don’t expect to have any money and you’re willing to work cheap because you’re just starting out….you’ll be fine.