June 2009

King.com, the world’s leading social games company, has just been identified by The Daily Telegraph as having high growth potential in their “Telegraph 100 Growth Companies Index.” The index picks companies that are a different points in growth and places them according to their impact on the Internet and importance.  King.com has come out 2nd in the ranking of 100 companies, out doing Moo, SpinVox, WAYN, Joost, Dopplr, TruPhone, and 94 others.

(Photo: Clockwise, from top left:  Mark De la Viña, Dominic Johnson, Heddi Cundle, Paul Brady)

We’re very excited to welcome our brand new and super smart intern, Kyle Lemle, to our team this week.  One of his jobs will be updating our new Consort Partners Twitter account which you can follow below (I know, I know… took me long enough… but heck, I’ve personally been on Twitter since 2006, so please forgive me).

I also wanted to give a shout out to two new contributors to this blog (because I know you were dying for a fresh perspective and not just my personal take on things).  Mark De la Viña and Dominic Johnson have both quietly debuted on the blog, but look for more of their posts in the future.  Mark is an incredible writer – no surprise as he’s a former journalist with the San Jose Mercury News, the LA Times, Philadelphia Inquirer, and Arizona Republic, among others.  Dominic is the co-founder of Consort and has a natural talent for messaging, sound bites and positioning.

Finally, here’s a line-up of some of the Consorts on Twitter:

Consort Partners (general)

Mark de la Viña

Dominic Johnson

Heddi Cundle

Paul Brady

Posted via email from Consort Partners

German fans at the FIFA Worldcup 2006 in Germa...
Image via Wikipedia

Steffan Heuer is one of those gifted individuals that can speak multiple languages – but he doesn’t just “get by” like I do when I try out my rusty German.   He actually writes for leading German and international publications like The Economist, Technology Review and others,  and can eloquently describe the nuances of everything from a corporate restructuring to the mechanics of a new startup.

In his recent column for Brand Eins, he explored the meaning of “Made in Germany” and decided to carry on the exploration in his blog.  He’s spoken to futurist Paul Saffo, head of GuideWire Group Mike Sigal, and others about their own personal take on the “Made in Germany” nomenclature.  You can see my thoughts on this at Steffan’s blog here:  The DNA of “Made in Germany,” Part 5, Kathy Johnson’s take

An excerpt follows, where I talk about how “Made in Germany” is indelibly linked to your thoughts on the brand of Germany:

“Consumers around the world know more about nation branding than they imagine, as they can define a nation in one word – the essence of the brand: Italy = sexy, France = luxury, USA = commercialism, Switzerland = precision, Japan = technology, Britain = heritage, Germany = engineering. We can also extend this same exercise to thinking of companies that personify the brand of a nation: Italy = Gucci, France = Chanel, USA = McDonald’s, Switzerland = Rolex, Japan = Sony, Britain = Burberry, Germany = Mercedes.

If we take this exercise one step further, then we could also make a generalization that the brand Mercedes is a shorthand example of what “Made in Germany” means. But what happens when this brand-informed image faces change or challenge? Mercedes got bought by Daimler (with a less recognizable household name), and the global economy slipped into crisis and faces increasing uncertainty and volatility. This is especially evident in the auto industry, where even stalwart Daimler has recently forecast a full year loss in 2009.

Does that mean that “Made in Germany” will absorb the same negativity and challenge? Should we look to other brands to personify the “Made in Germany” nomenclature – perhaps something other than an auto manufacturer? How about a solar energy company? Or a biotech manufacturer? Or a pharmaceutical company?”

So many phones, so many choices. I just wish they were all available on all carriers. Even though the Palm Pre is CDMA only, I probably would have bought one if it was also on AT&T. Unfortunately, it’s not – but if this slide is for real, it looks like we’ll have a pretty nice little Palm gadget as an option in a few months.

Posted via web from Kathy’s posterous

Raph Koster (Metaplace) and Lane Hartwell
Image by kathyjohnson via Flickr

On Friday, June 19 and Saturday, June 20, New York Law School will host its State of Play VI Conference, where participants will discuss the past, present, and future of virtual worlds.

State of Play will bring together scholars, games developers, industry leaders, government leaders, entrepreneurs, artists, social scientists, and policy makers to set the agenda for the development and study of virtual worlds. Participants will focus on the rise of virtual worlds and multiplayer online games, and discuss whether these worlds have reached a plateau in their development. A related event, the Graduate Student Symposium, will feature 30 students from around the world who will present and discuss their research on virtual worlds, and receive commentary and criticism from the experts and industry leaders whose work has shaped virtual world studies.

“State of Play has been a critical event in exploring the intersection of virtual worlds, games, law, and the ever-changing dynamics between them,” keynote speaker Raph Koster, President and founder of the Web-based, social virtual worlds platform, Metaplace, said. “I look forward to introducing Metaplace’s unique approach of democratizing the creation of all sorts of worlds and exploring legal, policy, and business challenges Metaplace and other platforms face as we move forward.”

Panels will focus on an array of topics, including the challenges faced by public and private institutions in online environments; opportunities and efforts in learning and education facilitated by virtual spaces; the differences between youth-related virtual worlds and adult spaces; developments in the ongoing conversation regarding ownership of virtual property, tax, and regulation; and the special concerns of government in relation to terrorism, security, and money laundering.

For full conference schedule, panel descriptions, and speaker biographies, check out: www.nyls.edu/stateofplay.

“State of Play digs deeper into challenging questions of virtual and real worlds than any other conference,” said New York Law School Professor James Grimmelmann, one of the seminal thinkers on virtual world governance. “The insights of the panelists at State of Play VI on how virtual worlds are and should be governed are carrying on a long and proud tradition established at the very first State of Play.”

The State of Play Conference has previously been held in New York and Singapore. This year’s conference is being produced in conjunction with the University of Southern California Network Culture Project at the Annenberg School for Communication and with support from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation.

Get cozy and get ready to rock, dance, boogie, etc. You’ll hear live music from artists including Grace McDunnough, Dizzy Banjo, DJ DoubleDown Tandino, Slim Warrior banging out base rockin’ beats straight from Second Life, Twinity, Openism, and Metaplace.

Join us at “Rocking the Metaverse” in Metaplace on Tuesday, June 2nd at 1pm.

Posted via web from Kathy’s posterous

I read a quote last week that said people spend more time with Firefox than their families. That’s probably true, given it’s open on my PC all day. But just imagine if we all started flexing our muscles and running on a treadmill while sitting in front of our computers. This contraption is for those who don’t want to imagine it, but want to live it.

But what happens when you sweat all over your keyboard and the letters get stuck together… Oh well, guess that’s not really anything I need to worry about…

Posted via web from Kathy’s posterous