Markets of Meaning (Find Portishead a Biz Model)

Peter Jones Wu Wei

Thanks to Alex Osterman via Twitter for suggesting this link to their appeal on Creative Commons: Help Portishead Find a New Business Model Portishead, an experimental-pop group and pioneers of the early 90s electronica movement, announced yesterday that they are now “free agents”, having completed their three record deal with Island Records. The band is looking at new ways to sell their music and are reaching out to their fans for advice. Portishead is not Radiohead, and should probably not release their own “In Rainbows” (or in their case, “In Rain”). They should not just follow the strategies of Big Ticket arena rock heavyweights. They have a deeply loyal fan base that waited 10 long years for last year’s P3 release! I would personally pay more for their work (on auction) than I would Radiohead just because of all their suffering for their cause. And because they are not going to see the mass volume of Yorke-induced sales. But they are a sufficient (and big enough) niche market example. Their business model should go beyond the “business.” They have a market …

The Book is Dead – Long Live The Book!

Peter Jones Information Ecology

This is a mail art call, one of the ongoing cultural artifacts spawned by Fluxus and Ray Johnson. Even if you don’t contribute, this is worth paying attention to, as cultural observers everywhere (Paul Krugman’s NYTimes op-ed on Friday) have been predicting the end of the book as we know it. So what do you think? Is the printed book format in danger of becoming an relic from the Gutenberg Galaxy? In the eBooks research I’m currently engaged in, the printed book remains a preferred medium for textbooks, cover to cover reading, and texts for personal markup. eBooks are good for many things, but they do not replace the love of paper. Books are themselves a system of signs, a packaging of signs that, when collected with sufficient other relevant texts, constructs a persistent identity, representations to others, and prompts of past literacies. You can walk in to a colleague’s office and know their competencies, interests, specialties, and possible contact points for relationship. (Have you ever seen someone’s book collection when on a first date situation and decided, on sight, …

Patricia Kambitsch’s Looks Like Howard

Peter Jones

In the midst of the Midwest’s blizzard, Patricia Kambitsch kept her date with destiny and launched her new memoir Looks Like Howard, now available online and everywhere through Behler Publications. We held the Surf ‘N Soul event at Therapy in Dayton Saturday, and our crowd packed the place with friends and book lovers, catching the Nick Kizirnis band playing their surf rock set, followed by DJs AJ RockWell and Scorpius Max churning out the old soul Chicago House. Patricia was on the air on Rev Cool’s Around the Fringe show on WYSO Friday, braving the onset of the blizzard to share from the new book, with the Rev playing Nick’s Mulchmen recordings. Max read the chapter Trash Day on the air, and the Miami Valley was told in very certain terms that the show will go on Saturday! The show did, indeed. Nick and his lineup of Jim McPherson (drums), Brian Hogarth (bass), Dennis Mutter (guitar), and showing up late from Orlando, Ed Lacy (keyboards). I expect pictures to be on Patricia’s blog soon!

Visual Global Sensing

Peter Jones

Could the mashup of Flickr + geovisualization generate a global Panopticon?  Robert Ouellette’s Gagglescape tipped me off to Flickr’s World Vision, a constantly circulating slide show of extraordinary images picked up from every point on the globe. The slideshow effect is mesmerizing, because these are images you would not be finding otherwise, it’s unlikely you would search for or find any of these in association with other images or keywords.  It has the effect of an autonomous global intelligence, a reminder that everyone else, everywhere, has a point of view, a location, and a camera. Flickrvision gives me new reason to actually post on Flickr for the fun of it, not just when there’s something to share.