Population Statistic: Read. React. Repeat.
Tuesday, February 28, 2021

It’s been in the works for years, but now it’s here — in a fittingly stealthy debut. Digitally-inserted name-brand products have been placed in recent episodes of shows like “Yes, Dear” and “Will & Grace”. Marathon Ventures did the honors, and is working on expanding its client list.

Product placement of all types are gaining currency with the rise of the DVR and general audience resistance to the traditional 30-second spot. What makes this variety so powerful is the ability to resell the placements in future reruns. So that can of Coke on a “Desperate Housewives” kitchen counter can morph into a Pepsi in syndication.

Which serves to make shows something less than the historical record they are now. In fact, you could see this as the start of a broader move to make show more malleable and less archival. From here, TV shows and movies can be tinkered with in the future to replace dated references and such.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 02/28/2006 10:03 PM
Category: Advert./Mktg., TV
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Who knew The Greatest Show on Earth had a black ops division? PETA is suing Feld Entertainment, owner of Ringling Bros. and Barnum & Bailey’s circus, on charges of conducting corporate espionage on the animal rights group, including hiring a former CIA spook to do the deeds.

Predictably, the activists are making the most out of this, media-wise.

If any PETA adversary were to run covert operations against it, I’d have figured it’d be KFC. They do have that military legacy stemming from Colonel Sanders, after all.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 02/28/2006 09:15 PM
Category: Business
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As mentioned, I’m trippin’ the geek fantastic today at the 2006 Search Engine Strategies Conference & Expo.

Well, truthfully, I’m doing just the “& Expo” part. That would be the free portion of this Hilton-sited congregation. It’s one way to kill the day. Besides, it’s freakin’ cold outside.

I’m typing this right now from the complimentary wi-fi lounge, sponsored by meta-search monkey Info.com. As always, I measure the effectiveness of any search service by what it digs up when I input my name into it. The verdict: Looking very Google-ish, with bunches of sponsored links for trips to Costa Rica; no big surprise there.

I’ve been here only an hour; got held up walking down Avenue of the Americas by what some cop said was a “preemptive counterterrorist measure” in front of the News Corp./Fox News building. Must have been a couple dozen police cruisers with their lights flashing, squeezing off traffic. As long as I get through in one piece…

Anyway, things are fairly sedate here in the Hall. I’m about to go wandering around, hitting the more interesting booths. There appears to be one pushing some kind of blogging enterprise a few feet away from where I’m sitting now; worth looking at. And there’s a whole other floor of these things to stroll through. Something’s bound to pique my interest, or lead to a contact, or at least yield some worthwhile trinkets.

I’m hearing a lot of biz jargon flying around me, and it’s striking me as funny that the patter sounds so familiar to me. It’s been something like six years since I’ve been to one of these sort of things, and you’d think the industry/niche would have matured enough that the same nebulous pitches wouldn’t be escaping the same types of mouths. But just from my innocuous little corner, I’m hearing the usual shizz-nit: “Click ratios”, “site optimization”, “keyword seeding”… Circley-jerkely, folks.

Aside from all that: I’m seeing a lot of good-looking women around. Many are definitely on the geeky side, but plenty are very appealing. I really wish I had gotten those damned business cards on time! (Should Better have them tomorrow…)

Off I go. More later and/or tomorrow.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 02/28/2006 12:06 PM
Category: Business, Internet, New Yorkin'
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Is anyone else out there having trouble getting Gmail to load up on Firefox?

Since yesterday, whenever I call the site up, it just goes to a blank “Loading…” page, and then nothing. It doesn’t load, it doesn’t error out, just sits there. Weird.

Even weirder, the Gmail inbox does load up through the Google Personalized interface. And weirdest of all: The Gmail site does load up fine with Internet Explorer.

I know the account is working, because I can see incoming messages coming in through the Personalized view. But I can’t get to them without firing up IE.

I haven’t changed any settings, either on Google or Firefox. It’s a mystery.

UPDATE, 3/1/2006: Just as mysteriously as it came, the problem disappeared, without me doing anything. Game on.

by Costa Tsiokos, Tue 02/28/2006 11:36 AM
Category: Internet
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