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Big News in the Blogosphere

OK, so this is not exactly about advertising but since it's about blogging and Adrants is a blog, I kinda follow this stuff. It's new blog software week. Here's the deal. Ben and Mena Trott of MoveableType, the publishing platform that makes MarketingFix (my other blog) possible, have just announced a new product called TypePad. They have also named Anil Dash , a guru status blogger and until recently chief developer over at VillageVoice.com, to be VP of Biz Dev. Further, they have closed an initial round of funding.

TypePad is a new, hosted weblog platform making it even easier for bloggers to blog and publishers to publish. If TypePad is anything like the original MoveableType, then bloggers, professional and non, are in for a big treat.

So what does this mean for businessess. In the Guardian article, the writer puts it this way:


By creating content management systems with professional features, for around one thousandth of the price of the systems the large sites of the dotcom era were forced to use, the weblogging industry is rapidly creating new possibilities for people to make a living writing for the web. Micropublishers, such as Nick Denton's Gawker and Gizmodo, need these powerful tools, but until now would have been forced into either writing their own or investing in a system more suitable for newspapers.

Not to be outdone, Blogger, who was recently aquired by Google, has also announced it's new version called Dano. I took a look at it today and sadly, it is not much more then a facelift. To be fair, it is an Alpha release but I was not wowed. Adrants is Blogger powered and I was hoping for more.

MT and TypePad seem to have it over Blogger at this point. Complete management over content from commenting to search to built in blogrolling (link management). Blogger, while easy to use, just does not have a complete set of blogging features needed to be a major player as this form of publishing moves into the corporate world.

MoveableType: Six Log: Six Apart Milestones
Moveable Type: Six Apart: Six Apart Ltd. Announces Close of Series "A" Financing
Guardian: Bloggers Tool Up
Moveable Type: Six Apart: Six Apart Ltd. Names Anil Dash as Vice President of Business Development
Blogger: Dano FAQ


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by Steve Hall    Apr-24-03    




Pizza Hut: Is it Good or is it Shit?


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by Steve Hall    Apr-24-03    




Disney Introduces New Magazine

Disney is introducing a new magazine to the U.S. called W.i.t.c.h. for girls nine to fourteen. W.i.t.c.h. is already published in 26 contries. The magazine will be an alternative to the likes of Cosmo Girl, J-14, Seventeen, YM, and Twist. Launch date is not yet known.
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by Steve Hall    Apr-24-03    




TV Advertising Up Over Last Year Despite War

CMR/TNS reports ad spend during the first three weeks of the war was actually up $70.2M over the same period last year. [via MediaWeek]
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by Steve Hall    Apr-24-03    




Reality TV Goes to the Movies

It had to happen sooner or later. Reality TV is going to the movies. New Line Cinema has produced a movie called "The Real Cancun". Set up like MTV's "The Real World", the movie is based on the experiences of 16 guys and girls on an all expenses paid spring break. There were no private moments. Cameras were there 24 hours a day.

"It just seemed to us that there was an opportunity to take a form of entertainment that is really working on cable and prime time and bring it to the big screen," said Jonathan Murray, the film's lead producer. "Spring break has been a staple of youth movies since the 1950's. We decided it would look good on the big screen and doing it this way would give audiences something they don't get on television, which is, quite frankly, some nudity, some sexual situations and language that's more realistic and honest."

"It's not just a booze fest," said director Rick de Oliveira. "It's not just 'Girls Gone Wild.' There are no competitions, no winners, no voting off islands. Instead there are the stories of what happened to these people during this week. What we have done here is not a documentary, but it's not a sex comedy like 'American Pie,' either."

So what is it, Rick, a Miramax period piece?
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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-03    




The Guide to Spoof and Parody Advertising

Who knew there was a guidebook to spoof advertising. Here's a 21 page PDF report called FWD: This Made Me Laugh. It's not new. It was put out in 2002 but it offers information for marketers on how to detect and react to parodies. Useful stuff.
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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-03    




Rance Crain on Keeping it Familiar

At the recent AAAA meeting, we all heard about Bill Lamar SVP CMO of McDonald's talk about how the company is going to dramatically overhaul it's marketing. Ad Age's Rance Crain, supported by some Yankelovich research, questions this shift away from the comforting familiarity that people are looking for today.
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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-03    




Reader's Digest Cuts Circ From 11M to 10M

It must be nice to be able to cut your circ by a million and still have a circ of 10 million. Reader's Digest is doing just that to save on circulation costs. They are eliminating sweepstakes and subscriptin agents which have proven to have less than optimal renewal rates.
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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-03    




Online Ad Spend is Up and so is Industry Optimism

For two straight quarters, online ad spending has increased.

Greg Stuart, IAB CEO, thinks the increase is "indicative of a larger trend at work. Of late, major marketers such as McDonalds have announced they intend to pour more dollars into the interactive space, and I'm certain their counterparts and competitors are also too smart to ignore that interactive is an integral part of the media mix."

There might be some cool aid sipping here but a little optimism never hurt anyone. Let's just hope his, and others, optimism turns into reality.
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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-03    




Honda Un-Sells The New Hybrid Civic

Snark Hunting has an interesting opinion on why Honda has limited to four the number of color choices available on the new Hybrid Civic. And the colors themselves are not very interesting. Why limit colors? Because they just might want to limit how many cars they sell since Honda actually loses money with every Civic Hybrid they sell. A very intruiging approach to marketing. Do your part for the environment but cover your ass when it comes to your bottom line.


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by Steve Hall    Apr-23-03    




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