Category Archives: Conversations

X Media Lab – Global Media Ideas @ Vivid (Opera House)


Why should you attend this event?

The ‘Global Media Ideas‘ event is an annual international summit at the Sydney Opera House that ‘caps off’ Vivid Sydney – a festival of light, music and ideas.

I don’t claim to know what the ‘X’ in X Media Lab stands for, however if I had to guess then I would say it stands for a ‘high quality experience’. Personally, I think the ‘X’ is all about ‘crossing’ everything possible – crossing skills, crossing the T’s, crossing your comfort zones, crossing people and mediums, crossing your learnings potential, crossing ideas and global locations, crossing time and challenges etc. Some people describe it as an ‘X’ factor!

The Lab is what this is all about. At all times the focus is on you and your ideas. You may be challenged and steered into new ways of thinking – but the sole aim is to actively help you define and achieve your goals to accelerate your commercial success. You can nominate your project for the lab here: http://www.xmedialab.com/project-application
There is a good chance that I will put myself out of business by saying this, however if you are unable to afford the services of a strategy type person (like myself) to help you with your business, then you must participate.

..Being part of X|Media|Lab is like winning the startup lottery. Having one to one sessions with some of the biggest minds in the industry gave us invaluable strategic insights that have helped shape our business thinking both now and in the future. Since X|Media|Lab our online creative community, The Loop has grown beyond our wildest expectations..
– Pip Jamieson (@theloopoz), Director at The Loop, Sydney

..The XMedia crew always source an incredible array of speakers from all around the world – diverse, inspiring and, even better, surprising.  The format of the event – very short speeches – culls any dross, so the speakers are always ‘too the point’ and impactful.  Its a great way to meet and source talented folks you want to work with in the future (from a range of disciplines) and we’ve certainly made use of the opportunity on several occasions“.
– Marshall Heald (@marshallheald), Head of Online & Content Distribution at SBS, Sydney

The emphasis of this upcoming event is on practical world-class solutions: what works, what doesn’t, and what you should be planning for this year and beyond. It is not a one-way flow of information – the program is designed to enable you to connect personally with thought leaders, mentors and potential business partners, handpicked from around the world – including Silicon Valley, Shanghai, London, Hollywood, New York, Tokyo, Seoul, and Singapore.

It is an intense information download and relationship building event for communicators in the digital age. There is no filler, no pitching and no panel – just solid, actionable content that you can take away and apply to your business or organisation immediately.

If you go, you will learn how to take your business to international markets. You will learn how to apply learning from cutting-edge case studies of what’s happening now in creative ideas and innovation in media and technologies – including: mobile, social, gamication, location based services, branding and immersive environments, augmented and virtual realities.

If your role is any of the following, you should place it on your to do list muy rapido: Games Designers and Developers, Mobile Services, Web and Social Media Professionals, Creatives, Brand Specialists, Marketers, Technology Wizards, Investors, Media Analysts and Strategists.

View an Executive Summary video of last year’s ‘Global Media Ideas’ event here: http://vimeo.com/14931406

Leave a comment

Filed under Big picture, Clear thinking, Connections, Conversations, Innovation, Technology, Trends, Uncategorized

Have you lost that black feeling?


How do you feel about black?

Please forgive me for the lack of posts on my blog – looks like the last one was august 2010. Reason being I have been booked solid since mid last year with helping half a dozen agencies with most of their accounts. It’s been so much fun!

Finally, today is when two rare and famous things happen at the same time: 1) I don’t need to be anywhere for the entire day, and; 2) I am well rested and not a comatose wreck from said activities (insert pathetic request for sympathy).

Therefore, the first thing I had wanted to do on this very cool day was to apologise for not posting anything on this blog for ages- and so began the search on Google Images using the term ‘busy’.

First picture I found was of a pair sneakers (‘Nike Busy P Air Force’) – inscribed on the side “ISN’T ALL THIS BLACK BORING?”.

It made me stop and think about a tonne of things, including how much black is in my day to day (think: car, shoes, socks, jeans, shirts, eye and hair colour, my macbook, wallet, phone, thoughts, etc) and this got be curious. I want to know what it means for you.

What does the colour black mean for you?

Who owns the colour black?

How do you feel about the colour black?

Describe what happens when you see the colour black on someone (or as the colour of a car)?

I would love to read a story about you and the colour black.

4 Comments

Filed under Clear thinking, Conversations, Insight, Observation, Qualitative, Sharing, Uncategorized

The lost craft of conversation


Comments on listening and speaking in the flesh (or on the phone)…

conversation in cuba

First post. Bit nervous. To cure nerves I will start with a quote to set the tone and theme.

“There is no greater mood enhancer than conversation with another person. It’s a holiday from yourself, richer and more dynamic than hearing a good song, reading a funny story, or blasting monsters to pixel smithereens on your computer” – Catherine Blyth, author of The Art Of Conversation.

Funny to imagine it, however sometimes I notice people either ask a bunch of questions in a row (forgetting to make statements) or make a bunch of statements in a row (forgetting to ask questions), or keep talking till breath runs out. This is not conversation. It is as dynamic as a pull-string-doll. I am probably one of these people at times.

Real dialogue between two or more people is more intriguing than one-way outward expressions from one person. Into context using tennis as an example: What is more interesting? a) Watching someone serve a ball without a receiver, or b) A skilful rally between two adept players. I assume most people choose the latter. Online examples of short rallies between two or more players can be found in forums, blog comments, facebook wall posts, or an email thread between two people. However you don’t really see examples of skilful dialogue between two people in the online world – if you do then it is in script format (which is not easy to digest). Generally if you want to experience this you watch a movie, listen to a radio show with 2+ hosts, or hang out with two good friends and listen to their conversation. Or obviously have a conversation in the flesh or on the phone.

I notice more connections between people are ending or breaking more often and the connections between people are looser than ever – especially in younger generations. I notice more disjointed levels of expectations between people and preconceptions that mislead one person to believe the connection with a significant other is something that it is not. These are common themes when breaking up or ending a connection, however I think the ‘end’ or ‘break’ can be polarised, exacerbated or expedited when social media tools are involved. Is there an antidote? Do we need one?

We trust recommendations and word of mouth more than anything else, including people we don’t know [strangers]. As pointed out a few weeks ago by Jonathan Carson, President of Online, International, for Nielsen Research – “The explosion in Consumer Generated Media over the last couple of years means consumers’ reliance on word of mouth in the decision-making process, either from people they know or online consumers they don’t, has increased”.

Not ground-breaking news for most technologists and online freaks, however it is helpful to get the facts direct from a reputable researcher – who I respect. It is an arduous task to set up and produce this kind of solid information. The point is, this makes me curious to probe and understand what is happening to people’s behaviour and conversations in the flesh (as a direct affect of this change in online activity).

“The digital age has changed the ways that we share our most important opinions and innermost secrets. The latter are usually reserved for our closest of acquaintances, but we don’t necessarily use the most personal approach to broach these delicate details.”-Josh Spear

Below you can see Ji Lee’s 10 Levels of Intimacy in Today’s Communication. It is both an interesting and absurd display of the redefinition and possible redistribution of how we continue on with our most cherished connections.

Ji Lee’s 10 Levels of Intimacy in Today’s Communication
Ji Lee’s 10 Levels of Intimacy in Today’s Communication
Lost Art of Conversation, Art Gallery of NSW, Sept08

Lost Art of Conversation, Art Gallery of NSW, Sept08

Speaking volumes on this topic is the installation on The Lost Art of Conversation – Art Gallery of NSW in September 2008. Jessie Smith investigated and commented “We are now able to do so many things from the comfort of our computer screen, that the majority of us now live in a genuine virtual reality. A genuine virtual reality that is so “Jetsons” like, that we can go bowling in our living rooms and our cars can give us driving directions. Basically this installation invited you to book a 45 minute chin wagging session in a public box with writer, artist, film maker, uni lecturer, magazine editor and social anthropologist Ross Gibson, as he attempted to revive the ‘lost art of the conversation’ and find some common ground with visitors.”

On the subject of social media, word of mouth and real life conversations, I thought of Cuba where there is no advertising other than political propaganda. One of the last places with a high-density of living with no consumer based advertising. The Internet is not available to everyone that lives there and therefore in order to find stuff, the most locals need to speak to each other to work out what, where, when, how, why etc, for almost everything. The result is a culture based on listening and speaking in the flesh. The craft of conversation is alive and well in this part of the world. No wonder everyone’s dancing in Cuba.

What do you think?

Do you notice less engagement in real life conversation? Do you notice connections breaking more often? Are looser connections better? On social media: Does it change the way we converse? Does it teach us quality or quantity? Does it make you unappreciative of real life bonds? Have your real life conversations changed as a result of it? Do you want to book a chin wagging session time in a conversation box? Do you need to go to Cuba?

2 Comments

Filed under Connections, Conversations, Cuba, Exhibition, Original Craft, Point Of View, Social Media, Social Responsibility, Virtual Reality