Digital Download 5/12/08

Hope you guys had a great Mother's day weekend. Without further ado, here's this week's digital download.


An article in last week’s Forbes listed five exclusive social networking sites that were upcoming in the world of elitists. "It's taken a while for wealthy consumers to start using networking sites, mostly due to privacy issues and concerns," says Milton Pedraza, CEO of the Luxury Institute, a New York-based research company that focuses on high-net-worth individuals. "But now they want to leverage all those social-networking advantages.” The social networking sites listed were aSmallWorld, Diamond Lounge, Squa.re, Quintessentially and LuxuryRatings.com. Your membership depends on who you know and, in one case, how much you are willing to pay. An interesting finding reported by Luxury Institute was that Participation levels for the wealthy in leading social networks were 16% for MySpace, 13% for LinkedIn and 11% for Facebook.


Google is serious about mobile wireless broadband. So much so, it announced a $500 million contribution to the new Clearwire-Sprint WiMax business last week. Of course, Google has its own best interests in mind since this investment ensures that the resulting broadband network is as open as possible and accepts Android handsets and devices. Rumors say Google will most likely be the default search engine on devices connected to the network. Google hopes the network will expand advanced high speed wireless Internet access in the U.S, allow consumers to utilize any lawful applications, content and devices without blocking, degrading or impairing Internet traffic and engage in reasonable and competitively-neutral network management. These are exciting times prefacing a new wireless era!


Andrew (Andy) Sauter, also known as the author of smoexpert.com, shows us an example of how with only an hour of work on a Saturday morning, a zero dollar budget and a 56K modem, he made international news within 48 hours. The subject? A Clinton Obama gun mailer. Thanks to all the social channel players who made it possible: Flickr, Digg, Reddit, Technorati and YouTube; CNN and NewsWeek picked up the buzz and took a mundane negative mailer and made it an international sensation. A mailer, which was probably only meant to be viewed by maybe forty to fifty thousand people, reached millions on an international level. This is just one example out of millions of the power of social media optimization.


Coolspotters is a newly launched site that focuses on celebrities and the products they wear in various photos. It allows users to track stars, products, brands, TV shows, movies, places and events and encourages them to talk about and purchase those items shown. The idea of the site is to show connections between people and things. These connections are called “spots” (i.e. “I spotted that”), and show details on the item. If something is incorrect, users can change or remove it, and add new people and things. Coolspotters is the first collaborative site that gets users to do most of the work where it’s essentially a structured data wiki. The end result is a ton of highly structured, highly valuable information. Users can search, find and purchase related things all in one celebrity-filled hot spot.


Myspace decided to jump on the Twitter bandwagon and announced an added profile-sharing function (called Data Availability) which will enable users to update both profiles at the same time. The new service allows MySpace users to indicate whether they would like to make information in their MySpace profile visible on other sites such as eBay, Yahoo and Photobucket too. MySpace said it would like to expand it to other partners who might be interested as well. It seems Myspace is trying to become a social network aggregator itself and following the idea behind the likes of Digsby and Yoono. When asked on a conference call whether Facebook would eventually become involved in the program, MySpace CEO Chris DeWolfe said "This project is open to any site out there that wants to work with us. We're happy to work with Facebook if they want to join up with us on this project."

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