The heads of two of America’s most popular sports — NASCAR chief Brian France and National Hockey League Commissioner Gary Bettman — are coming to the Reuters Media Summit on Tuesday.
Is experimentation at risk? Will the economic downturn neuter the anticipated lift the presidential elections and Beijing Olympics were expected to contribute to the estimated $290 billion U.S. ad market in 2008? When will writers and studio chiefs get along?
Italy’s Seat Pagine Gialle doesn’t publish all the images it gathers from webcams, in the interests of protecting privacy — but it does pass them on to the police, Seat’s CEO told Reuters journalists in Paris. Asked whether images gathered by Seat, a yellow-pages publisher that is active on the Internet, didn’t provide opportunities for criminals, Luca Majocchi said: “I agree with you. Actually, we show on the image much less than what we have to, to protect privacy. Second, we try not to use webcams on the street.” Asked what information Seat provided to the police, Majocchi said: “The works we do for the government, say for the police, they are not sent online. We don’t make this accessible on the net. They use our system.”
The unprecedented outpouring of teenage angst on the web isn’t just a way for teenagers to make hundreds of new friends but provides a unique opportunity for advertisers to exploit them, Pierre Bellanger, CEO of French free blogging service Skyblog, told Reuters journalists in Paris. “Never, so many diaries, so many articles, so many printed words, were online from a generation expressing itself. So you have to know that scientists, sociologists are exploring that mass of data because it has a sociological content of extraordinary value. And it has also an extraordinary value for advertisers. Because what we have spoken of is very profitable,” said Belanger, who runs Europe’s biggest blog. He said Skyblog’s extraordinary growth had happened despite being French-language. “When you look at the data you have very few sites with our growth, with one of the worst languages to speak on the internet, which is French… it’s like being — before Lonely Planet — with Hungarian tourist guides. So it’s strange.” Bellanger said he didn’t believe bloggers would mind if Skyblog linked up with a partner, as it wants to do — even a company like Microsoft. “I don’t think anyone cares, truly, about corporate ownership — I would say 99.9 percent of the audience. Like with MySpace for example. People were saying ‘Oh la la’ — in French — ‘it is the end of the world as we know it!’ But no, nothing happened. What I would say is important is that the brands of the 90s are no longer the brands of the new generation.”