The Gillmor Gang — Michael Arrington, Dan Farber, Robert Scoble, and Steve Gillmor — enjoyed @scobleizer’s FaceTime tour of Florida’s abandoned Kennedy Space Center in the aftermath of the last shuttle launch. The countdown clock sat frozen amid a sea of media trailers and the huge Twitter Live Assembly building. No, wait; that was where FriendFeed stood until Google + was launched last week.
Google + should buy Twitter, suggested @arrington from his retirement center in the Pacific NorthWest. Having immediately shut down its live stream to Google the day after Plus went public, it seems unlikely Jack and Dick (and Ev and Alice for that matter) are any closer to selling. As the ghost of Walter Cronkite peered down from the “permanent” CBS News bunker, CBSNewsOnline editor in chief @dbfarber schooled @arrington on the news of the day. We all got a little older. And that’s the way it was.
The Gillmor Gang — Robert Scoble, John Borthwick, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor — joined the Circle Game as channelled by Joni Mitchell and Tom Rush. Google + seems to be a hit, which means it is soon to reach the critical mass where all social software must graduate from high school to beyond. For now, the service appears like a broader reimplementation of Friendfeed, which some of us felt was truncated not by the users but by the Facebook acquisition. In other words, for some that reinvention is a good thing.
For @borthwick, the project is a substantial undertaking for a company we’ve been trivializing in recent months along with its stock price. For @scobleizer, it means the battle between reach and rich, this time in social circles as Google defines graphs. For @kevinmarks, plenty of work ahead but a strong effort. For @stevegillmor, well, you’ll have to watch the show. But a hint: +1s to Twitter, FaceTime, and whoever makes new mistakes fast.
The Gillmor Gang — Robert Scoble, Phil Windley, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor — celebrated the news that apps are moving past web sites as the default architecture of the planet. I say celebrate because I think the trend is one that will continue, and even accelerate, as iOS notifications make interoperation between apps more useful. In the process, as @windley notes, notifications and the processes that are triggered, become the focal point of what used to be known as the operating system.
What that means for Windows is cloudy at the moment, pun intended. Though many analysts suggest Windows Phone 7 will gain significant penetration alongside iOS and Android, it will only be possible should important apps drive that adoption. @scobleizer is dubious, and @kevinmarks suggests the locus of power in notification has moved away from OS to Facebook and Twitter. @stevegillmor has his money on @mentions, where social and Web meet in a native wrapper too tasty to ignore.
The Gillmor Gang — John Borthwick, Robert Scoble, John Taschek, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor — were rendered iCloudy in the aftermath of Steve Jobs’ WWDC announcements. Even stalwart Google fanboys Taschek and Marks found it difficult to withstand the halo surrounding Apple’s aggressive move to the Cloud and iOS as the dominant platform moving forward. Betaworks’ John Borthwick applauded the Twitter integration and just about everything about iCloud’s new grip on the music business.
You’d expect Robert Scoble’s enthusiasm for iOS/X in comparison to Microsoft’s Windows 8 adoption of ZunePhone UI, but the highlight of a day of highlights was the just one more teeny little thing coup de grace of iTunes Match. In a single flick of the lighter, Apple gave us the tiny nudge we needed to erase music’s years of isolation from the digital age. At 256K and cord-less synching, Mobile Me went from $99 to $25 and all the records you can eat.
The Gillmor Gang — Robert Scoble, John Taschek, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor — shuddered with expectant glee at Apple’s presumed iCloud announcement at next week’s WWDC event. It’s clear from all the leaks, most interestingly from Apple itself, that the record companies are finally healthy enough to move into the new streaming era. With Lady Gaga selling five times as many records as the next entry on the album charts, the numbers have strongly tipped from retail to downloads.
Amazon helped by subsidizing over a million copies at $1 a sale (8 bucks to Lady Gaga), but by next time, the market will have moved almost completely online. This gives Apple the leverage to get the TV/cable networks and the movie studios on board, with Netflix playing the Amazon role in stoking demand for streaming. Live events are last, probably following the heavyweight boxing matches of Ali and Tyson via pay-per-view but direct to Apple TV and its competitors, of which there are none. iCloud is the moment when the bits stay where they are, and the checksum becomes the value point. See you Monday for a special Gillmor Gang extra.
The Gillmor Gang — Robert Scoble, Kevin Marks, Dick Hardt, and Steve Gillmor — got all LinkedIn in the wake of the startup’s successful IPO. Amid the fear mongering about another tech bubble, it seemed more likely that LinkedIn was the first of at least a trio of big social plays going public. Facebook and Twitter seem no brainers, each with their own dynamics in terms of revenue plus virality. And then there’s Groupon and maybe Zynga.
But the real question was not whether hype trumps value, but what’s next as the intersection of technology and media accelerates. This year’s broadcast upfronts seemed primed for disruption, with most networks junking their entire drama debuts from a year ago in favor of big budget sci-fi and Sheenless comedies. Meanwhile Netflix continues to mushroom as it becomes the next HBO, or some supernode unlike anything since the agencies took over from the film studios in the ’50s. King Harvest will surely come.
The Gillmor Gang — Craig Burton, John Taschek, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor — survived the week of Google AeeEeeI/OUuu, Facebook slimeware, and the embalmerization of Microsoft with nary a scratch. Robert Scoble briefly joined via the iPad and FaceTime from a layover at O’Hare, but he couldn’t hear us and we could hear him say so, over and over. Kinda like Facebook, who somehow got its Dumb on with a PR campaign designed to dredge up all the privacy stumbling of yore.
MG probably has it right that we will forget this by next week, but not if Google continues to wander around in the social desert. Larry Page doesn’t seem to have made the case for a change in leadership, as Google extends its lead in automated cars to automated houses. Google TV and Music continue to languish without support from any real vendors, while the New Yorker, Fortune, and a stampede of streaming players rush into the AIrPlay cloud. With Skype the new dongle for Windows and only Dave Winer thinking Apple will give up on its Flash boycott, the move toward iOS took several giant steps for mankind. If only we could hear any of this over Craig’s lawn doctors.
The Gillmor Gang — John Borthwick, Robert Scoble, John Taschek, and Steve Gillmor — inaugurated a new kind of Gillmor Gang. To the undisclosed, it looks the same: silly chat, mangled technology disruptions, and dead air. To the more clueful, who recognize we’re entering a new age of social media, the intersection of social monitoring and proactive brand creation tools spells big trouble for old media and their thin-skinned attacks on the realtime enterprise.
As @scobleizer describes Rackspace’s move to Chatter, you get the idea that social media is not just the province of the Ashton’s and Lady Gaga’s, but a million personal clouds that resonate with accumulated authority and credibility. Mainstream media can play a role here; @jborthwick describes the velocity with which a New York Times reporter validated the Bin Laden story as it broke on Twitter. @jtaschek reminisces about the speeds and feeds days of recognizable software giving way to micro-authority and pushrank.
The Gillmor Gang — Kevin Marks, Danny Sullivan, JP Rangaswami, John Taschek, and Steve Gillmor — christened the new Gang studio with a surprise welcome to Kevin Marks. It turns out he’s joining salesforce.com on Monday, following JP (six months), JT (7 years), and me, who is celebrating my one year anniversary. Kevin has been a forceful champion of open standards at Apple, Technorati, Google, BT (Ribbit), the Gillmor Gang, and now salesforce.com. Before, and once the festivities were out of the way, we got back to Gang business, namely the continued aftermath of the phone location recording crisis.
With free lunch debunked, we tackled the Amazon outage and its impact on the Cloud. You can decide for yourselves, but the consensus is that such challenges will be remembered fondly as a validation of the moment, as with the Gmail outage of several years ago, when the Cloud passed from inflection point to basic services. The velocity of business in the iPad age, where CEOs can see deeply into their companies in realtime, demands a level of interactive services and an iterative feedback loop not possible with the previous generation of software. And that lead to a debate about iPhone video calls and what Danny is looking for in a flying car.
The Gillmor Gang — Danny Sullivan, Doc Searls, John Taschek, Kevin Marks, and Steve Gillmor — endured technical glitches and a dissection of the disruption formerly known as TV before settling into a debate about privacy. I know, sounds like the usual nonsense, but this show was high quality nonsense. I forget who brought up the famous iPhone/Android hidden recording file crisis, but things quickly got out of hand when one of us suggested that was a feature not a problem.
It turns out that not that many people are aware that when we are on the Internet, everything is recorded. For those who seem surprised by this, all those free apps are actually there to harvest our clicks, searches, and other gestures of our intent. As Doc Searls pointed out, how else does Google make money except by random clicks on Adsense adding up to billions. It’s only when we can’t figure out how to delete our wanderings that people get upset. Me — I count on being surreptitiously tracked so I can go back and figure out where I was last week.