is the new way of launching?

Netscape by Jason Calacanis, the media coverage increases as it approaches to the launch time.

update: I haven’t used DIGG at least consciously in the past and so I have no idea if they are copying DIGG.  But it seems like fun.  Here is my profile: http://www.beta.netscape.com/member/kenjimori

The discussion goes on there: “AOL copies DIGG

BL Ochman provides an excellent analysis.

A VS’s Fred Wilson.

Even more inspiring by Jason himself.

J-wave launched “brand new j”

One of Tokyo’s most recognized FM stations, J-WAVE (81.3mhz), launched the new streaming service called “brand new J” about a week ago.

jwave streaming

Sign up

sign up

It is more or less the same with the conventional online streaming radios such as WBLS or KBLX of the US.  But I am not quite sure if this format  is in the right direction where online streaming radio business will eventually evolve into.  Probably not; virtually no collaboration / community building among listeners (yes, they got a poll though), no consumer generated contents.  

Broadcast as video

If “broadcast as video” is the new direction the ad agency-TV industry will pursue as Jeff Jarvis notes in the comment section of a vc’s post “Umair, Jarvis, Disney, and Me“, Gyao.jp of Japan is probably more or less in the same spirits yet coming from another direction. Originally sprang from USEN (wikipedia in Japanese), one of Japan’s media contents players but obviously not in the TV networks industry, gyao.jp proclaims that it now has registered viewers of more than 8 million (the size equivalent of 80% of Japan’s largest Yomiuri newspaper subscription). The program is offered all free of charge.

Not sure if they have originally come up with the video with non-skippable ad format, which is reportedly the method Disney will deploy the next month, or stolen it from somewhere else. Yesterday, I first tried Gyao.jp and found the program quite impressive. Especially “Kume Hiroshi’s car touch,” the car review program by Japan’s long-time TV journalist, Hiroshi Kume (wikipedia only in Japanese), who acknowledged in the campain video that he likes more freedom in editting than he can with traditional network TV.

CAUTION: If you’d try out gyao.jp, make sure you use IE, but not Firefox, with which I had the problem. Not sure if it works fine with MAC.

It’s interesting to note, on the other hand, Yahoo Japan (strongly backed up by Softbank) was leading the internet video streaming free of charge still in the old format (contents only ). Worth keeping an eye on them.

ビ デオとしての放送、米国でディズニーが無料放送をインターネット配信するというニュースが流れた後、いろいろが議論が起こっている。そのなかでおもしろ かったのは、おなじみのJeff Jarvis、米国の広告代理店の動きとしては、「ビデオも放送である」という捕らえ方を模索しているらしい、そこに広告収入を求めていこうという動きが ある。日本でいえば、民放とはかなり毛色が違うが、gyaoが同じフォーマットでインターネットTV放送を開始していて、すでに800万人の登録会員がい るという。久米宏のカーウォッチという番組がおもしろそうだった。今後が楽しみな分野である。

Why hesitate?

Among Japan’s major newspapers, Yomiuri, Asahi, and Nikkei, I could not find any XML or RSS guidances in their respective top pages, whereas it is so easy with nytimes.  

On the other hand, both my.yahoo.co.jp (my yahoo) and Google ( personalized page ) make it easy to add Asahi and Nikkei feeds in their RSS feeds readers.  This morning, I found it very hard to add asahi and nikkei feeds into my netvibes.com, which I have been using since then.  Finally I was able to add them only after I googled (for example) “nikkei rss.”  Why would the Japanese newspapers hesitate to promote RSS feeds?

MIXI account setup

Update^3: Sorry folks

Update^2: Someone, actually one of my maimiku, told me that such mobile mail address restriction applies only to IP address allocated to Japan. Hence no such restrictions to apply otherwise, it seems.

Update: For those who are getting an invitation, make sure you have a valid mobile mail account from one of those Japanese mobile carriers; notably, docomo, au, softbank, tsuka, willcom, etc. Now, mixi requires both your email account and your mobile mail account validated before they will issue a new mixi account. I know they are concerned about security; however, looking at the entire social media landscape from MySpace to facebook, which are getting open at least on the new member acquisition,

I think this move dismisses the potential of the Internet; that is, the potential being that location doesn’t matter and our hobby and interests (I have noted a lot of anime lovers overseas) distributed long tail across cultures around the globe. Mixi spread via word-of-mouth, viral, just like every other successful social media services. Did you know one of the fastest growing nations are China and India? Not Japan, whose population had just started to decline ahead of other advanced nations like Germany, Italy, US, or France. Now it in effect prevents folks overseas from signing up the new account. How sad.

An invitation letter..

MixiAccountSetup1

The profile of the person who invites you..

MixiAccountSetup2

Fill in your profile and apply. This screen shot is the old one. The new one requires your mobile phone mail address right after the PC (or mac) mail account. Both mail addresses will later be validated before activating the new mixi account. That almost means you need to be living in Japan and have a mobile phone with email enabled. Good luck.

MixiAccountSetup3

Return to mixi tutorial . (for those who have joined mixi already.)

After you’ve set up your account, also refer to other operations:

sending a new message

receiving a new message.

creating ashiato cho in your diary

checking ashiato

disjoining Mixi

Update:

I prepared also the Tutorial Home at flickr:

MIXI TUTORIAL HOME

wansegu – ワンセグ

About a week ago I was pondering to switch my keitai (cell phone) to either softbank (new Vodafone Japan, the new brand name yet to be known) or au, sometime this year when the number portability will be around. But, yesterday I happened to spot the “wansegu” keitai (ワンセグ in katakana) being on promotion in downtown, Tokyo. Well, after all, I couldn’t resist buying the one from au (model: W41H).


The deal was 0 yen for the equipment and the basic monthly phone bill would be about $26 ($20)for the next 24 months, which is quite cheap (the withdrawal within 24 months would cost about $90 of cancellation charge) . So I signed up for it and now my family owns four keitai units for three of us. Well, you know I still feel the deal was that good.

Here is why:

WANSEGU: Quite simply, “wansegu” or “one seg” is the digital TV broadcast brought to your cell phone ; for now, the content is basically the same with those on analog network broadcast TV but in a much better quality. It claims its picture is stable even “on the go” situation. Yes, that is true: I enjoyed FM J-Wave (81.3FM, Tokyo) on my way to the station and digital TV in the train (but not in the subway) to the office this morning. Both FM and digital TV come at free of charge. In addition to the conventional TV content, it also features text-based weather news and news topics you can browse into the ez-web, which is the au original sort of mobile internet service at some cost of packets to navigate (as shown in the picture below.)

Or, you might also want to watch the TV in a bigger landscape display (2.7-inche wide) at home, at office, at sports game, or even inside the car (below). It says the battery lasts as long as 3.5 hours.

.

Overall, I felt it very good. Think of it as a game where internet and TV broadcast media compete for our time or attention. Some of us, my wife for one, spend more time with TV; others, me for one, tend to spend more at internet. It’s the occasion-based segmentation. And I think “on the go” is quite an under-developed ocassion.

Plus, it comes with 2(2.1) mega pixels, auto focus camera.

And also with LISMO, an iPOD alike music player (which I will report later).

[Full disclosure] (for fun) : Last night, I had the hanami party with friends including au guy, who does not know about this blog and that I am blogging. He came late and liked that I had this au keitai. I work for ad agency and consult for network broadcast TV, but I don’t think this post is biased in any way.

Update: More on wansegu, PC card and Nintendo DS.

つながるブログ@ヒューマン

さっそく、生放送となったNHKの「つながるブログ@ヒューマン」を(実ははじめて)観ながらこれを書いてる。番組で速報のブログが用意されて いるようなので、さっそくトラックバックしてみる。(ただし、トラックバックの時に表示される、”ここから先はNHKのサイトではありません”*という 主旨のメッセージはいまひとつ不気味だ。)

*Update: やはりトラックバックはすぐには反映されずに、トラックバック先の原稿(つまりこれ)が事前にチェックされている模様である(あくまで推測ではある が。。)。一旦チェックをした上で、さらに、「ここから先はNHKのサイトではありません。」という注意を促しているのであれば、なおさら不気味には感じ られる。一定のチェックを施してるのであれば、もっと他の言い回しがあるように思える。
さて、思ったことは、どうしても、①テレビ、②番組のブログ、③自分のブログ、の3つを同 時にみなければいけないことが土台無理である。しかも、テレビが主であり、テレビに見入っている時のモードと、PCに向かってブログを読んだり書いたりし てい る時のモードが、非常に異なるため、その2つが同時に成立しない。”生”であればあるほど、負荷が増えて、何をしてるのはわからなくなった、と いうのが正直な感想である。

ブログは確かに編集(edit)~出版(publish)が全て個人でなされるという点では、放送や新聞よりも速報性がある。 が、テレビの進行にあわせて“生”(Live)でブログをするほどの意味は実はあまりないという気がする。ブログの更新サイクルは、“生”(Live)というよりも、数 時間とか、もっとゆったりしたスパンではないか。あまり”生”(live)という要素にこだわる必要はないのではと思った。

Update 2: つまり、時間軸というスペースを見渡したときに、ブログは”常時”更新可能であり、そのスペースの全て(=>”永遠”)をカバーできるのに比べる と、テレビ番組の放送はそ の枠(30分とか1時間とか)のみ、”瞬時”でしかない(下図)。放送が終わったしまえば、参照元のデータは消えてしまっているという弱点がある。後日参 照が可能 になるような番組のアーカ イブを置いておくとかしたらいいのではないかなぁ?


timespace
Originally uploaded by okusour.


Update 3: よくMicrosoft Liveや海外のコンファレンスで使われているような、会議進行中の同時ライブチャットを導入するのも面白いでしょうが、事前に編集が効かないという点で 放送上は無理。それならば、ブログ上で放送と同時にライブチャットを導入するという方法が考えられますね。

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Japan’s NHK blog goes live with its live TV show

The randomness, that sense of never quite knowing who’s going to post when and what, is both the joy of the new site and slightly scary. It’s the lack of control you feel you have at times – and control, I realise, is the one of the hardest things for editors to cede.

CNET Japan reports that NHK, Japan’s BBC, is going to host the weblog for its new Saturday night live* show. The show itself seems to be about blogging, too. I think, at least, it is a bold experiment for the flagship national TV station to run the live show along with its blogging, which would inevitably be live with the trackback, if not the comment, function equipped. Just waiting to see how the things will develop.

* Title: Tsunagaru Terebi @Human, 23:00-24:00 Saturday at NHK Channel 1.

Update 1: 3/21/2006

I’ve found it wierd that its blog warns a viewer, upon the click on the link or trackback link, that the page she or he is being re-directed at is not NHK’s production, as shown below:

For the trackback link, it is still understandable to show this alert even if NHK seems to check the contents before the approval. However, for the link to another external page, which is made by NHK themselves, it is hardly understandable and even resentful; since rather than showing such an alert, they can simply write whatever they think about the contents, to which they are miking a link, and why. I hope they will learn from good predeseesors overseas such as the Guadian’s Georgina Henry (via BuzzMachine), who also expressed her fear of losing the control of the contents.
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