April 2008

The :en:headquarters of :en:eBay in :en:San Jose, California.Image via WikipediaBuilding on the frustration that buyers and sellers of eBay have been feeling (especially since their last boycott in February), eBay members are organizing a boycott tomorrow, May 1st, to “Make Some Noise” as a play on eBay CEO John Donahoe‘s comments that the last boycotters were just “noise.”  I’m not sure how many people will join the boycott or what impact it will make, but at least this time around, they have an alternative to try:  www.wigix.com.  In fact, news of the Wigix launch made TechMeme yesterday.  Check it out here:  Wigix wants to kill eBay

Wigix home page

If you’ve ever bought or sold anything on eBay, you’ve probaby encountered the surprise when you discover they charge you a fee for everything. Multiple fees, confusing descriptions, commissions – clearly eBay’s pockets are getting fatter at our expense. Unfortunately, there has been no other alternative to try, but that’s all changed this morning with the launch of Wigix. Wigix doesn’t have listing fees, and the fees they do charge are minimal and transparent. Plus, you can earn money without selling anything by describing a new product into their catalog – once you do that, you can earn 1% of the advertising and transaction fees every time that product is sold – even if you’re not the one who sold it. So do check it out (and yes, that’s me on the front page! ).

Remember w hen you could call up your travel agent and tell them what you had in mind and they’d come back with recommendations suiting your preferences? For example, you could tell them “I’d like to go to someplace that isn’t filled with tourists, where I can explore nature and see indigenous animals, but I don’t want to it to be too strenuous. Oh, and I’d like to stay in a boutique hotel, if possible, and I’d like to book a romantic restaurant since I will also be celebrating a special occassion.” Your travel agent would search through brochures and guidebooks and make a few phone calls before delivering a recommendation for you. But sadly, that same service hasn’t been available on the Internet… Until today.

NileGuide launches today – focusing on what you’ll be doing once you arrive at your destination, vs focusing on which airline you’ll take to get there. You’ll find content from sources you already know, like CitySearch, OpenTable, and Expedia, but you’ll also read content submitted by people that live in the city you’re visiting so you can explore like a local. Forget about being a tourist – you’re now equipped to be a traveler and bring home unique stories about your memorable holiday. Because not everyone wants to visit the Hard Rock Cafe as the highlight of their holiday.

Below is a picture of Heddi and I with Josh Steinitz, CEO and co-founder of NileGuide.

Heddi Cundle, Josh Steinitz (NileGuide), Kathy Johnson (Consort Partners)

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Heddi, Andrea and I attended the Mashable party this week and had a chance to catch up with old friends and meet new ones. Here, Heddi and I make a sandwich out of  Dan Farber, Editor-in-Chief of CNET.

Heddi Cundle (Consort), Dan Farber (CNET), Kathy Johnson (Consort Partners)

Of course you expect your PR agency to get you a front page article in the New York Times, and while they’re at it, a spot on Oprah too. We discuss that subject as well as what’s hot in Web 2.0 (hint: women!), and other tips and tricks to getting publicity for technology companies.

Today King announced they will send two lucky people to the American Idol finale in LA, complete with airfare and lodging.  To qualify, all you have to do is register on MyGame (click here) and submit your American Idol game score.  If you haven’t tried the game already, you’ll see it takes talent.  Your avatar sings and dances better based on your performance at clicking the arrows flying by (like DDR for your fingertips).  If you don’t do well (like me), the crowd starts to boo and the judges will royally pan you.  Eeek.  I guess that’s one way to build a thick skin.

King is the world’s leading online social gaming company and have been partnering with Hollywood properties like American Idol, Deal or No Deal, and 1 vs 100 for some time.  They’ve recognized the opportunity in bringing name-brand television properties to allow fans to continue to experience brand-name fun away from the TV.

 Good luck with your American Idol online performance.  Maybe you’ll actually get a chance to see the winner crowned in LA, along with Simon, Paula and Randy.

Have you ever had a teleconference where numerous people are huddled around a speaker phone, talking to remote contributors dialing in from various locations?  “Okay, is everybody on page 3 of the presentation?  Do you see the graph on the lower right, third line down to the left, now the implication of this item is….” “Wait, wait – what page are you on?”  “I didn’t hear what you said, could you repeat that?”… Know what I mean?

Body language, facial expressions, tone of voice, and hardcopy handouts are all important aspects of running a good meeting.  But with airlines going bankrupt, the rising cost of fuel, and the inconvience of travel, hopping on a plane every time there is an important topic to discuss isn’t feasible for a variety of reasons.

Enter Dimdim.  Now, everyone can see, hear, and collaborate with one other – for free, and with no complicated downloads that take over the performance of your PC just before your web meeting is about to start.  The team behind Dimdim have been working hard to make sure all of the sophisticated technologies behind-the-scene stay there – so that everyone:  you, me, your friends, family, colleagues, partners and your nerdy neighbor, can effortlessly set up a web meeting in minutes.

 www.dimdim.com

dimdim and Consort Partners at DEMOfall 07