SBC Launches Blog-Powered Desktop RSS Newsreader
Capitalizing on the explosion of weblogs and the rapid growth of RSS, SBC has launched Project D.U. (digital universe), a desktop RSS reader populated by feeds from weblogs in six categories. Believed to be the first branded RSS reader that comes complete with pre-loaded content, Project D.U. was developed to bring unique and different voices, along with SBC's brand of course, to a wider audience. With Yahoo's recent embrace of RSS in its new My Yahoo, RSS is fast becoming the preferred mode of information dissemination on the Internet.
Project D.U. was conceived by Dallas-based TracyLocke Director of Digital Initiatives Todd Copelvitz. Prominent bloggers in the six categories were approached and recruited by yours truly (to whom money was paid) along with others at TracyLocke. We tried to identify blogs with strong personal voice like Tony Pierce's Busblog and blogs with focused subject matter like David Hauslaib's Jossip or Jessi and Tom's Big Bad Boat Blog.
Project D.U. users can add their favorite rss feeds as well.
Obviously, SBC intends to garner broad brand recognition and sell some product from this effort and there's no shame in that. What's unique is the project's win-win position providing long term branding for SBC, unique and different information for consumers and increased notoriety for those bloggers participating in the project. Participating bloggers are paid a small fee in exchange for Project D.U. pulling their RSS feed and adhering to minor guidelines. TracyLocke expects about 500,000 downloads of the reader by early 2005.