Category Archives: digital media

Women and Sport in 2016

Last month I found myself in New York City attending the 2016 version of Advertising Week.
Similar to Team Canada, female athletes led Team USA in Rio this year in medal count. However, there still so much gender disparity in sports.
Featuring:
Laura Gentile SVP, espnW and Women’s Initiatives, espnW
Kate Fagan Sports Reporter, ESPN
Lisa Borders President, WNBA
Jemele Hill Co-host, ESPN2’s His & Hers
Amy Purdy Paralympic Snowboard Bronze Medalist & Dancing with the Stars Alum

iab MIXX 2016

Ladies and gentlemen. Your emcee for today, me! Wow! so much has changed over the past couple of years.

I’m just over six months in as iNvolved Media/Active International’s new Director of Social Strategy. I’m really proud of my podcast, Welcome! And now, I’ve been asked to host and emcee one of the iab Canada’s tent pole events: MIXX 2016.

This year’s MIXX hopes to “explore the meaning of “ME” in the context of big data.” Check out the MIXX 2016 website for details on how to register. The event takes place on September 21, 2016.

Here’s an interview I did at work about iab Canada and this year’s MIXX.

Best of Netflix

I’m addicted to Netflix. Maybe not so much as the next Netflix addict. I watch most, if not all, my “TV” on Netflix. If Neflix had the latest episodes of The Daily Show, Schitt’s Creek and Mr. D then I would be a 100%-er.

For my money, Netflix has the best shows. Hands down. I thought about writing this post after finishing the second season of Daredevil last night. The last three episodes are amazing!! When I first started watching season one of Daredevil I was less than enthused. However, I gave it a second chance after season two was released and became hooked.

Here are my favourite Netflix programs:

Lilyhammer: Starring Steven Van Zandt from Bruce Springsteen’s band, this show follows a former gangster who chooses to live in Norway as part of a witness protection program. It was Netflix’s first original program. And in my opinion, it’s the best. Steven character, Frank, is played to perfection. It’s a show with plenty of laughs and drama. I was actually sad it ended after three seasons.

Sense8: From the siblings who brought us all the adventures of Neo in the Matrix trilogy, Sense8 is a scifi drama that consists of 8 characters who have the ability to connect emotionally and mentally. The Wachowski’s bring their brand of mind-bending storytelling to this award-winning series. Only one season has been made. Netflix has picked up a second season. I can’t wait to watch this!!

House of Cards (Season One): Probably the best season of the four that have been released so far. When season one was released THIS was the show that spelled the demise of cable TV as we know it.

BoJack Horseman (Season One): I have not watched the entire second season. But season one is a blast. It’s a fun and emotional roller-coaster. As long as you don’t mind that the main character, voiced by Will Arnett is half man/half horse.

Making A Murderer: Is he guilty or innocent? Did her even receive a fair trial? Is the whole freaking town corrupted?! This true Steve Avery documentary will captivate you like nothing else.

Master of None: The best TV comedy in recent memory. It’s funny while also being honest about how real people actually behave. And I did like that it was not full of white people. Who knew the world was coloured… Season Two has been picked up by Netflix.

Honourable Mentions: Better Call Saul (Netflix has distribution rights), From Dusk till Dawn (distribution rights).

Best TV Show on Netflix that wasn’t on Netflix: West Wing. Hands down the best series I’ve ever watched. Kinda bummed that it’s no longer on Netflix. I would pay money to own the DVDs to this.

 

Unboxing The Dash from Bragi

Finally. The one Kickstarter product I’ve been waiting for finally arrived earlier this week. The Dash by Bragi.

The Dash reminds me of “comm” that Jack Bauer used to place in his ear to talk with and listen to CTU (Counter Terrorism Unit) when he went on his missions to save the world.

I’m getting used to the gestures to control The Dash as well as all it’s features. I’ve already used it to store and listen to music with (independent of my phone), listen to podcast from my phone as well as track my workouts.

The music sounds clear and crisp. The preset instructions are also clear enough. I’m really excited about my new Dash! Thanks Bragi!

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

The Dash | Bragi

Instant Articles: Facebook

If you haven’t heard about or seen Facebook’s Instant Articles you will be very soon. Especially if you’re in Canada.

Instant Articles have been around for a little while now. It basically allowed publishers to post Facebook exclusive content to the social media giant’s platform. By accessing the more than 1 billion active users, the publisher would, in essence be exposing their content to more available readers.

Earlier this month, Facebook opened Instant Articles up to all publishers. Currently, Canadian publishers on the Instant Articles platform include Chatelaine, Diply, The Huffington Post Canada, Journal de Montreal, Maclean’s, Sportsnet, The Canadian Press and TVA Nouvelles.

According to a Facebook blog post:

We built Instant Articles to solve a specific problem—slow loading times on the mobile web created a problematic experience for people reading news on their phones. This is a problem that impacts publishers of all sizes, especially those with audiences where low connectivity is an issue. With that in mind, our goal from the beginning was to open up Instant Articles to all publishers and we’re excited to be able to do that in a way that makes it fast and easy for all publishers to reach their audiences on Facebook.

Here’s what Instant Articles looks like (on my Android device specifically):

instant articles | facebook

See the “lightning blot” circled in red? That denotes an Instant Article. In this case, it’s from Slate.com. When a user clicks on the image in this unit they see:

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For the user, it’s a much better experience than clicking through and reading the article on the Slate website. Once done, the reader would then close the mobile browser and re-open Facebook. With Instant Articles, the reader doesn’t have to leave Facebook.

For the publisher, they get more eyeballs on their content. And with more eyeballs comes the potential of increased revenues. However, this revenue is shared with Facebook.  And more eyeballs on their Facebook content doesn’t necessarily mean more eyeballs on their own websites/blogs. What does this mean for the future of publishers if they continue to rely heavily on Facebook for their revenues?

For Facebook, it make their platform more sticky. Facebook always wins.

 

5 Canadians to watch in digital technology in 2016

At the beginning of this year I wrote a piece for itbusiness.ca titled, 5 Canadians to watch in digital technology in 2016.

2015 was a very eventful year in Canada. We saw Justin Trudeau’s Liberals topple the Harper Conservatives decade long grip on power in this country. When it came to technology, we continued to see Uber battle local governments and the established taxi industry; marketers giggled with excitement as Facebook opened up the ability for all businesses to advertise on Instagram; Periscope made Twitter cool again (but for how long?); Netflix continued to grow; and Taylor Swift shamed Apple Music into paying artists a fair wage.

What will 2016 bring to the table here in Canada? Who will the movers and shakers be in technology here? Time will tell, however, here are five Canadians worthy of your attention in 2016.

Click HERE to read on.

Year in Review: ITbusiness.ca

I really enjoy contributing to ITbusiness.ca. I have been doing so for a number of years and 2015 was no exception. I wrote 5 pieces this past year.

The first one ended up being the most popular post of all of 2015. Here is a list of the articles. If you have not read them, I encourage you to do so. And even if you have, this is as good a time as any to review them. I hope you enjoy!

Brands and U2 take to Periscope (and Meerkat) to reach fans and customers

Canadian smartphone use on the rise; but apps in decline: Report

What the recent announcements at F8 mean for advertisers

Twitter showcases best in class during Advertising Week Canada

5 Canadians to watch in 2015

 

The most popular post on itbusiness.ca

Wow. That was unexpected. Early in 2015 I submitted an article to itbusiness.ca called, “5 Canadians to Watch in 2015“. Little did I know that it would end up being the most popular post of the year.

I profiled Alkarim Nasser, Salim Teja, Deborah Hall, Duncan Fulton, and the Conservative Party of Canada.

Who should we watch in 2016? I’m not sure yet. But stay tuned!!