STATE OF AMERICA
The Death Of Online Anonymity – Ten years ago people were used to having many different personas – at work, at home, with their friends. During this time fewer people used the internet and anonymity was the norm. Now that most people have an online identity on Facebook or the like, anonymity is regarded with suspicion and associated with hackers, abusive commentators and scammers. Aleks Krotoski, author of the forthcoming book Untangling the Web: What the Internet is Doing to You, believes we are entering a new phase of the internet age. “The rise of Facebook and Google ushered in an enormous number of people who hadn’t previously used the web, and this has seen a shift in attitudes towards anonymity. People themselves are becoming less and less inclined to be anonymous online because it is now associated with bad behavior.”
BRAVE NEW CONSUMER
A Tale Of A Motivated Billy Idol Fan –
In another example of an everyday individual making the impossible happen with some ingenuity and a lot of passion, Michael Henrichsen persuaded Billy Idol to play at his birthday party. Over the span of two years, and with the help of some of his friends, Michael created stunt after stunt to capture the attention of the British rocker. He built the
website www.playmybirthdaybillyidol.com to post all the stunts he created which range from having his friends hold banners over highways to collecting endorsements from celebrities like comedian Kevin Nealon, Seattle Mariner Jay Buhner and porn star Ron Jeremy. He put together an ’80s cover band called Nite Wave that began playing a series of charity concerts dubbed “Billy Idol Aid” and raised more than $10,000 for the American Red Cross and Northwest Harvest. When Billy Idol’s people found out about it he maintained a relationship with them until the impossible happened. In August, Idol himself sent Michael a message. “The people of the world have spoken!” Idol thundered. “The dream will become reality…” Finally, Michael’s dreams came true this October and it’s all thanks to his creativity, determination and the internet.
Toshiba and Intel’s Social Film: The Beauty Inside – Intel and Toshiba have gained the attention of Facebookers by teaming up on a film project with a twist:
giving multiple people a chance to play the leading role. The Beauty Inside is a film series broadcast on Facebook in six parts. The movie tells the romantic tale of Alex (Topher Grace), who has set his eyes on a girl (Mary Elizabeth Winstead), but he has a major problem – every morning he wakes up as a different person. This is where the public was invited to get involved as one of the many incarnations of the main character. Budding actors – both female and male – could audition for the role of Alex through an online casting call. Those who tried out were required to record themselves reading an audition script via an app provided on Facebook.
*Special thanks to USA Network’s Suzanne McGee for bringing this story to our attention
Invest In Someone, Literally – Upstart, a new startup by a former Googler, is aimed at funding people instead of companies. Upstart lets graduates connect with a minimum of five financial backers who act as investors in the “upstart.” They provide funds and sometimes mentorship as the participant pursues his or her goal – be it writing a novel or starting a tech firm – in return for a variable share of the next decade’s worth of annual income. Upstart explains, “It’s an investment in you, not your idea or your business” – instead of big employers giving promising grads their professional head start, today literally anyone can do so.
ON THE RADAR
Try This Platform:
Google+ has partnered with the NFL in the first partnership to fully integrate Google+ Hangouts onto a separate platform. If you’re in a fantasy league set up through the NFL.com/fantasy page, everyone in your league will be able to video chat by simply clicking the Hangout button. This means you can look at your friends’ reactions as you draft each player and watch them gloat during big plays throughout the season. Since the standard fantasy league has about a dozen players, Google has increased the number of Hangout participants from 10 to 12 on the NFL.com platform.
Try This App: The MoviePass app is being described as Netflix for in-theater movies. For a monthly fee starting at $29.99 users are allowed to see unlimited movies at local theaters nationwide. Membership includes a smartphone app, membership card, discounts at concession stands, and access to advance screenings and events. Watching a movie at a theater is as simple as checking into the theater on your phone and getting your ticket from the kiosk.
Read This: “The Silent History” is a new kind of e-book that advances the way digital novels take advantage of smartphone technology. For $8.99 readers can subscribe to the entire story which centers on a near-future dystopia. Everyday new content is automatically downloaded in bursts short enough to be read in 15 minutes. The most striking innovation is the use of GPS to unlock additional narratives known as Field Reports. Field Reports, contributed by other writers, appear as pins on a zoomable worldwide map inside the app, and the only way to read them is to visit the actual location. Once there, you will find yourself immersed in the details of the very location you are reading about