Archive for February 9, 2009

Full Monty, Not Quite: Social Media disclosure policies

The myth of complete disclosure while engaging on behalf of clients or self in Indian social media prevails. We all mean good and some of us do follow the guidelines. But if you take a closer look, you’ll find that we are secretive and deeply mistrusting

I was reading an interesting link post which is a collections of social media policy adopted by organizations and individuals.

I am to come across such broad policy and guidelines issued by Indian corporates. If I stand corrected do leave a link.

With the inclusion of NDA ‘s – Non Disclosure Agreement, for the uninitiated – in the scope of work contracts of most social media firms, there is little known on the “how” and “under what parameters” of what is being implemented in the Indian space.

I am not sure if social media usage policy and guidelines figure on the priority list of most practitioners or if it is merely a passing thought.

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

Mediaah again: Indian blogospehere takes on NDTV

In the recent controversy which took the Indian blogosphere by storm, a classical David (Blogger C.Kunte) versus Goliath (NDTV), where the blogger had to post an unconditional apology for his criticism of NDTV, Managing Editor, Barkha Dutt.

During my initial interview while enrolling in my Journo school, I was asked to write a 1500 word piece on The Times of India. In my heyday of anti establishment pro-libertarian idealism, inspired by the raspy tones of Bob Dylan, I came up with a piece called ‘The Times they are a changing’.

Incensed by Medianet and a percieved unipolar media space back then in Mumbai, or so I thought, I came across the infamous Mediaah! blog controversy and the person at the centre of the storm a cerain Mr. Pradyuman Maheshwari.

When I heard about the entire NDTV-Ckunte fiasco, his feud with TOI is what came to mind. Both parties have moved on since then and Mr. Maheshwari has joined as the Editor-in-Chief of Exchange4Media.

Here’s a para by my erstwhile rockstar, which is duely posted on E4M, in a piece titled ‘Why face booker’s and bloggers love to hate Barkha Dutt’

As someone who has had to pay much in legal fees for what I have written on a weblog, I do realise that a blog or a Facebook/ messageboard comment is as liable for legal action as is a comment in mainstream media – print, radio or television. I must confess I got carried away a few times on Mediaah!, a blog-based media site that I would run (2003-05), and when I did a fair bit of homework on the issue, I realised that my consistent criticism of certain entities could be construed as a slanderous campaign against them. And, rightly so.

Well the entire piece which gives a crib-by-crib account and is some what defensive about the whole thing. It’s true that a minimum amount of perspective is necessary to objectively understand the position taken by NDTV. It is quite surprising that the voice of restrain emerges out of the most daring and talked about cowboy this side of media.

You can view the entire article by P. Maheshwari on E4M here

Gaurav Mishra, on his blog Gauravnomics, has a complete and probably the best overview on the NDTV-C. Kunte controversy on his blog which can be viewed here.

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world

Mobile internet users to take over Internet landlubbers?


Def – Internet
landlubber: Person hooked on to terrestrial connections (Dial-up, broad band…) and views any form of satellite or wireless internet usage as a disruption or a compromise to his/her user experience.

The mobile internet revolution is on an upswing. The ground realities of Indian digital technologies and infrastructure availability makes it a virtual no brainier that mobile internet wins hands down over terrestrial connections.

There are about 300+ million mobile phone users to about 5+ million broad band users in India (ref: medianama reports and numbers) which brings the comparative user ratio to 60:1 which is uncharacteristically high for a single medium and unlikely to be surpassed within the next decade.

E4M ran a article titled ‘Mobile internet active users to surpass that of traditional Internet users’
which forecasts the upswing and urges advertisers to embrace the digital medium on the whole in order to gain strategic and measurable communication advantage over traditional media.

Here’s what the interviewees had to say on mobile internet being more sustainable than broadband

Tewari of mKhoj said, “Yes, mobile Internet is the way forward and I do believe that the Internet story will only be true from mobile and not PC. It will be the wireless Internet and not wire Internet, and it will be more sustainable because the sustainability comes consumers and if there are more consumers on the ecosystem then that means that there will be more content, more advertisers and more money. So, that is why the Internet story from the wireless side will be a sustainable one in this country.”

Popli of Star India said, “Absolutely yes, the first experience of the Internet will be that mostly entrants will be on the mobile phone, because the mobile phone far more affordable and lucrative device than a computer. We still haven’t solved our electricity problem, so unless we have a laptop that runs on battery power and is long lasting, the mobile phone is probably the best friend of the Internet in small towns and cities for surfing the net. Therefore, mobile Internet going be significantly larger than the broadband Internet.”

Vartikar of Mauj Mobile said, “Both broadband Internet and mobile Internet have their own uses. The form factor (display/ keyboard) of mobile has limitations as compared to the PC. At the same time, the PC is restricted by its cost and the single utility that it offers, unlike the mobile, wherein browsing or mobile Internet is an add-on for most Indians. Today speeds are not beneficial to people spending time on mobile Internet, but the advent of 3G and higher bandwidth may well change that. Also, as form factors improve (large screens with touch utility) for the mobile, we will see a major shift in how the mobile is used more and more for browsing.”

I partially agree with his agreement. As far as my convenience and user experience is concerned, I will always look for a bigger screen and easily accessible buttons for doing my work. Unless the mobile screens get bigger, which would kill the purpose of a mobile, I am not buying int o this argument. Connectivity – sure. Actual work – Not really.

What’s your take…

You can read the entire E4M article here [Link]

P.S. For all you Smart Alec’s wondering why I refer to e4m and afaqs in my write-ups…Well, I am a PR guy after all 😛 Old habits die hard:) !!

This is a chronicle of my experiments with social media, web 2.0 and digital communications which details industry updates and analysis from India and around the world