mumbrella.com.au

Rove and Dave Hughes – Shark jumping or just playing around?

According to mumbrella today,  Rove may have ‘Jumped the Shark’ by using twitter with his mate, Dave Hughes while getting makeup done pre-show.

Tim Burrows, editor of mumbrella.com.au asks the question “Could this be the moment that Twitter ate itself?” – Rove took a photo of Dave, Dave took a photo of Rove and they both then tweeted it. He then says “The celeb Twitter shark has officially been jumped.”

Yep, I get the point about shark jumping but is that what’s really happening here? – isn’t this just like any other brand playing with social media?

Were their actions for the benefit of other media to comment on more likely were they for the 48,000+ followers between Rove and Dave to enjoy and experience? – Isn’t conversation and communication the point of twitter? Isn’t that what Rove and Dave were doing?

It should be noted that neither Rove’s or Dave’s tweets said anything about ‘watch tonight’s show’ or ‘tune in to channel 10 tonight’ so I don’t know what’s so wrong about them doing this.

I can’t help but think that if this was Miranda Kerr and Megan Gale photographing each other in during a makeup session at Fashion Week the marketing and ad industry would probably collectively coo and fawn all over them (and the photos for the clicks) and consider this as ‘brave’ and embrace it as a new way for brands to play with twitter and social media.

I also think  Channel 10 should be given kudos on two points:

1. For supporting Rove as long as they have and regardless of a shifting demographic watching it,  it wouldn’t have run this long without the numbers behind it – even if they are falling now.

2.  For not instigating some stringent policy about their stars using social networks such as twitter.

Am I a massive, Rove fan? No I’m not. But I do know that Rove is better than a lot of other local content – does anyone really think we need another a season of ‘Australian Customs. We caught this guy trying to bring in an open bag of chips and a banana’?

And Rove, while more expensive to produce is much better than buying in cheap US or UK syndicated content like ‘World’s most *insert dramatic sounding words* you’ve ever seen!‘ Thankfully Channel 10 hasn’t and I think the domestic TV industry is all the richer for it – rather than us decrying the end of Aussie TV we should be championing programs like Rove.

Maybe it’s all just a mountain out of a molehill but all I can say is God help the next Australian comedians or celebrities that try to do something they consider fun on twitter/FB etc if this is the sort of reaction they get.

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6 things that will happen with all social networking

Everytime a new technology or social network gets big these are six things I can absolutely promise you the media will breathlessly report like it’s absolutely ground breaking and it’s never been done before.

The public of course is then supposed to lap this stuff and sit in wonder at our own ingenuity/stupidity/marvelousness/cruelty at what has been done.

So here’s 6 things I can assure you will happen with the next big, well I’ll say social network, but you can apply it to virtually anything where humans interact:

6-little-things that media will do with social networking

1. Someone will get fired from their job or a potential job for saying or doing something stupid. Twitter examples include that Cisco employee who lost their job before they started or from a few years back that banking intern who said he was visiting a sick relative but actually dressed up as a fairy at a party and posted the pics on facebook.

2. A brand will do something with the medium. It’ll either go really well or will ‘destroy their reputation’. twitter = Skittles, or the recent Amazon malarky.

3. Some celebrity will get a whole bunch of people following or joining them, get hassled and then cry foul. Two words: Ruby Rose.

4. Someone will get dumped. It’ll be embarrassing and it’ll go viral.  oohh! a two’fer John Mayer might quit twitter after dumping Jennifer Aniston on it.

5. Quote an expert for no real reason. In a large amount of articles, particularly those where a company or a celebrity is involved a ‘human behavioural expert’ or ‘social networking expert’ will be interviewed and they’ll say one or a series of generic things: ‘it’s changing the way we live’, ‘this is a quite extraordinary phenomenon’, or ‘you know, when our parents were growing up they never had these things to worry about’ and they may then pull out the trump card of all seemingly insightful comments ‘the world is getting faster and we’ve all just got to try and keep up, but I’d say to anyone concerned: I’m my professional opinion you have to do what’s right for you’.

6. The 6pm television news – needing anything with footage to justify a 60 second report – will randomly stop people on the street and ask them what they think. Responses will vary from ‘um, I don’t know’ to ‘it wasn’t like this in my day’ or the classic a group of three school kids yelling incoherantly but happily into the camera while waving their hands.

(Isn’t there a lovely irony to interviewing people in the street about social networking when the news team could have asked the same question on the social network they’re talking about?)

So what am I saying here? I guess what I’m saying is just get over it.

Don’t sit there in some sort of trancelike wonder at all of this. Everytime this occurs there’s some sort of ‘oh I can’t believe this happened’ kind of faux bewilderment – it’s rubbish is what it is.

This isn’t new stuff, it’s the same stuff that happens again and again and again it just happens on different mediums.

Makes you wonder about humans a bit doesn’t it?

Ugh, Ok, enough. rant over.

How new media can and will rewrite history

In a newspaperless future, when everything is online and everything can be deleted and scrubbed from the main records how we view history and how we will be able to access history will not be the same.

The phrase ‘history is written by the victorious’ will no longer be valid, history will written by whoever is the editor-in-chief of big media.

And it’s already starting.

Mumbrella revealed today in ‘SMH writer goes out in blaze of glory‘ that the SMH removed an article within 24 hours from it’s website, presumably because in his final column Graeme Philipson upset some of Fairfax’s upper management. You could of course however go here and read the scanned version from the print publication.

But thinking about this issue one step along the chain of logic, what’s to stop a politically motivated editor or board from deleting entire swaths of positive or negative editorial to try and push their agenda?

Editorial independence aside (and lets assume it has been pushed to the side), what if a future editor or board they simply deleted or perhaps, more cunningly, re-edited or slightly altered stories from years passed? Who would notice? Would a research intern in 20 years looking for information/dirt/stories about the person running for PM know the difference between fact and altered fact and or complete fiction? That researcher looking for the information is only going to find the new versions of the articles and in a future without any print records (because print is there in ink for life) how would they, or anyone, cross check?

It could be a scary old future ahead of us where content is king, but an editor with wild eyes and an agenda becomes a modern day Rasputan.