The Great Disruption

There's a sense that threads are starting to merge.

When Things On The Web get a disproportionate response...
or When Legacy media (and other areas of life) is less than impressive...
and even when Social Media is a bit rubbish...

They all seem to be speaking to the same theme:

That we might all be living through The Great Disruption.
(or you could just jump down to the radio documentary where I stole this phrase to try to explain it).

How my favourite 10 bits of social media that get a disproportionate response, get a disproportionate response...

For people like me who aimed at careers in legacy media, even saying the phrase 'social media' is difficult.

(Someone I know just floated that there is no such thing as “social media”... now it's just “the web”. Think I feel the same way...).

So here are some examples of the web being social.

Where the stream of content transcends the idea of a one-way-transmission, and picks up its own momentum.

Beyond the Creator's wildest dreams.

(work-in-progress... adding to the list below... this is somewhere to put my links...)

How To Be Creative by Hugh MacLeod Hugh McLeod Hugh Maccloud Mcloud Huw

Hugh McLeod - How To Be Creative

This was the first time I saw someone 'showing their workings'.
Building up a manifesto, and then a book, completely out in the open.
For free.
On a blog.
Allowing anyone to freely comment.
(Here's a link to the first 25% of the book)

Caine's Arcade
Puts my day in perspective.
Defy you to watch this without a lump in your throat.

Antoine Dodson

This is the first report, from a local news bulletin...

Antoine Dodson warns a PERP on LIVE TV! (Original)

(45 million hits to date)

Which lead to this:- Being remixed by auto-tune the news...

(104 million hits to date)

...Which lead to internet fame, earning enough money for the family to move out.

(5.9 million hits to date)

See also: How a crowd came to the aid of bullied bus monitor Karen Klein

Sainsbury's Tiger Bread letter

This is tiger bread.

This family's daughter wrote a letter to Sainsbury's


Why is tiger bread c\alled tiger bread?
It should be c\alled giraffe bread.

The family blog about the letter, and its response - linked here.

This is the reply:

I think renaming tiger bread giraffe bread is a brilliant idea - it looks so much more like the blotches on a giraffe than the stripes on a tiger

from the family's blog

Pictures of the letters trended on twitter

And all of this probably speaks to what Seth Godin termed:
"Do you have a people policy?"
"Hard to imagine a consultant or investor asking the CMO, "so, what's your telephone strategy?"

And then the internet comes along and it's mysterious and suddenly we need an email strategy and a social media strategy and a web strategy and a mobile strategy.

No, we don't.

All of these media are conduits, they are tools that human beings use to waste time or communicate or calculate or engage or learn. Behind each of the tools is a person."
Full link - click here

"Copyleft" - why FREE works

"...the more the audience freely shares the film, the more they purchase DVDs, theater admissions, and merchandise; witness the $$ numbers that prove it."

"Her adventures in our broken copyright system led her to Copyleft her film, and join as Artist-in-Residence."
More here

Seth Godin's blog

Chortle - comedian being ripped off
YouTube allowed a comedian to be ripped off... but it also allows the audience to spot the plagiarism...
(but live comedy undergoing the changes everyone is facing, now that the audience feels it should be able to comment freely: link here)

Webseries: Lonelygirl15
(original post on storygas)
Allowed the audience to comment freely.
Which meant a community emerged. Which simultaneously publicised and made the show better.
See also 'The Guild'.

I've suddenly clung to this as a Grand Unifying Theory for what is behind some of the examples above.

A greater change in society that probably also leans on psychology and sociology, as much as the technology changes.
It's in this documentary called THE GREAT DISRUPTION.

From Peter Day's World of Business

A Great Disruption

...Because it relies on a disruptive new relationship that's not top-down but bottom up.
Cries have gone up from all corners of the working world that things have got to change, that capitalism is broken and that the system can’t go on in the same ways as before.

GlobalBiz: A Great Disruption
Or click on the PLAY button above

1:33 Jay Rodgers:
"We've always known, that for whatever particular thing you're working to do, that there may be somebody who's done it before. Or there may be someone who simply has a better idea about how to get it done.

When we got into the web 2.0 era, where you could not only broadcast on the internet, but take back in feedback - it brought about a world where suddenly you could imagine finding the smartest person to work on a specific solution."

Alan Moore - author, No Straight Lines
7:09 "We've created a working environment for many people, which makes them unhappy.

They are functioning only towards creating shareholder return and monetary value.

But actually this isn't the reason why we want to work, and these aren't the reasons why these organisations should exist in the first place.

7:45 "To ask a CEO to understand - really get their head around what makes a human being work and operate is a really big ask.

Business and organisations inherently changing themselves to be socially organised and orientated around a different type of belief system.

If you take an organisation that says by coming alongside our customers - by actually saying our customers are our co-creators, our co-workers, our marketeers.

We are now having a very different type of dynamic relationship:
we're learning as an organisation, by listening and working with our customers.
We're making better products, because in fact our customers are telling us how to do that.

What we do know is that in today's world, people are seeking to work and collaborate together in different types of ways.

Leadership in that context is the stewardship of enabling people to come with you willingly, rather than dictating how people are going to operate and function."

Jay Rodgers, Local Motors, Arizona - on The Forge
24:00 "What is it that people get from collaborating?
They get fame. They get notoriety. They get education. They get the right to have their name on the side of the product, which is about pride. And then they win money.

So it is a different construct than the idea of I sign employment contract.

I'm bored at my desk.
I'm told by some boss somewhere who ostensibly knows what it is that I am supposed to be doing.
That this is what I'll be working on for the day, the week, the month, the year.

So we're changing the constructs. And some of it is better. And I expect some of it is less stable and therefore worse for people, so we don't have it licked."

Also features Clayton Christensen speaking about
What media companies can learn from the Japanese car industry
And here's a great article on this here...

Here's another Peter Day's World Of Business "Are CEO's Up To The Job"
- – podcast talking to author of "Employees First, Customers Second"
This CEO lets his staff speak completely openly to arrive at collective decisions, and get employees to create the value of the company.

And for balance...
have a look at this great reaction to a campaign video for Bodyform in October 2012.
The flow ran as follows:
1. Light-hearted attack on Bodyform by Facebook member
2. Eight days of silence from Bodyform
3. Video response from a fictional character, supposedly representing Bodyform, sarcastically answering the Facebook member
4. Shared liberally around the web
5. Advertising industry pats itself on the back, other brands want to copy the approach, the agencies win awards
Is that really what we think the potentially of this new media age is? Seriously?
How much authenticity do you think this generates for Bodyform?

The Fallacy of Social Media by Jonathan MacDonald

Adventures In Twitter Fiction

I always compare what's going on now with 1950's UK television, but Andrew Fitzgerald compares it with 1930's radio...

In the 1930s, broadcast radio introduced an entirely new form of storytelling; today, micro-blogging platforms like Twitter are changing the scene again. Andrew Fitzgerald takes a look at the (aptly) short but fascinating history of new forms of creative experimentation in fiction and storytelling.

Like the Seth Godin blog [my fave seth posts here], I'm subscribed to Bob Leftsetz

Here's a post with the points that resonated the most,
(with "live" substituted with "writing online"... "musician" with "comedy writer" and "music" with "comedy").

"1. You're a musician, not a recording artist.
It's 2015 and not only have recording revenues declined, the whole world of music has gone topsy-turvy. Yes, there are a few superstars who base their careers on successful recordings, but everybody else is now a player, destined to a life on stage. This ain't gonna change, this is the new reality. You can make an album, have fun, but don't expect people to buy it or listen to it. The audience wants an experience. You're better off honing your presentation than getting a good drum sound on hard drive. Your patter is more important than the vocal effects achieved in the studio... People love a good time. If you deliver one, you'll get more work.
4. Transparency.
Your goal is to get enough fans such that your guarantee goes up.
5. Hits don't guarantee live business.
6. Live is freedom.
You can do whatever you want on stage. As long as the people respond and come back, you're in control, you're winning.
8. Live lasts, hits don't.
You can find your fan base and grow it. Just don't expect it to include everyone and don't believe you're entitled to it. If no one wants to see you live, you should probably find another line of work. But almost no one wants to see you when you're new. Which means you must slog it out, paying your dues, until you find what makes you unique. And music is all about uniqueness, doing something everybody else does not. Me-too is for the radio, not for the stage. If you're not the type who perseveres, if you're not willing to forgo not only college, but creature comforts, you're never going to build a lasting career.
10. Chops are everything.
Practice. Once you're competent, then you can improvise, then you can take chances. And great art is always about taking chances.
12. Music is everywhere!
The public wants to graze online, they want tracks, not albums. And they want to be able to research you and know more about you, which is why you must have an online presence.
13. Know who your fans are.
It doesn't matter how many likes you've got or Facebook friends or YouTube views. Those are nearly meaningless statistics utilized to quantify something elusive. They can be faked and every few years we switch platforms and start counting all over again. Your career is forever. It's about knowing who your fans are and how to reach them. Not overloading them and playing primarily to them. Your fans own you, not the radio station or the media. Your fans will support you. And most of your fans are not vocal, they will not click or tweet or send you e-mail but they'll show up and buy merch."

It's tougher, and more oblique than doing music gigs, but for me, the parallels are striking.

I don't know if - working on other people's shows - I'm the equivalent of a session musician, or a songwriter,

But either way, enjoying stretching the metaphors to breaking point.

Literally, do comedy writers have to become standups?
On stage?
Playing to live audiences?

Or is it something more figurative?

That comedy writers have the ability to "perform" online.

For free.

To build an audience.

That might lead to a gig that's paid.

Anyway the full Bob Lefsetz post is here:

When Legacy Media is a bit rubbish

Legacy media (everything that's not digital) has a problem with changing things once they've been released.

Digital content tends to best lend itself to works-in-progress and not being entirely correct or closed or 'finished'. "Always in beta".

Legacy media has been about transmitting ideas in a one-way direction - from the creator to the audience.
(Creators might be film directors, an ad agencies, TV broadcasters, magazines etc...)

Bad ads

UK fan is stabbed in Rome.

Probably not the best bit of media buying by British Airways in the Evening Standard...

Boots hamfistedly gets in on that whole Fifty Shades of Grey Business...


Some say this is an example of social media gone bad.

What if it's a great example of social media being good and pass-on-able - and a legacy PR line that's probably disconnected from the first thing most people think.

That Waitrose seems a bit pricey and posh.

Who knows best - the PR effort or The Crowd?

The answer probably doesn't matter... so let's ask The Crowd to join in with your PR effort... (PS haven't checked any of the below...)

Finish the sentence: "I shop at Waitrose because ________." #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because Tesco doesn't stock Unicorn food #waitrosereasons

I shop at Waitrose because the M&S "2 dine for £10" attracts the proles. #waitrosereasons

I shop at Waitrose bcuz itz where I cn link al de fit wimmenz, innit #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because I can wear chinos and still feel like a peasant. #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because I like watching Daily Mail readers support neo-socialist institutions #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because I'm a social media commentator working on a rather pedestrian critique of the #WaitroseReasons fail for my blog

I shop at Waitrose because all the other supermarkets are full of povs and stainers. #WaitroseReasons

I shop at Waitrose because darling, Harrods is just too much of a trek mid-week. #waitrosereasons

@waitrose "I shop at Waitrose because..." you say "Ten items or fewer" not "Ten items or less", which is important #WaitroseReasons

Here are thousands of articles about #WaitroseReasons

But here are a load of the actual tweets



Everyone I've ever worked with in TV news graphics has been diligent and inventive... often working under insane pressure.

They are absolutely the best in the industry at presenting complex ever-changing information in instant, impactful and stylish ways.

From time to time, however, daylight is sometimes shed upon the magic.

Most famous man in the world?


Davis Beckham.

East of England.


Bad day for The Region...

Good day for BBC South News Graphics

That's Jobs - blow. Got it.

This one isn't a news graphic...

...but reassuring for the lawyers that the graphics department remembered the Golden Glove Awards is a registered trademark. Take that, Globes.


Bit harsh - it's not like they've got something like a huge official logo with the right spelling of Wimbledon to copy or anything.

Fritzl's face on camara.

Guess the caption is just trying out some kind of Austrian accent.

From @robdoylecouk
Asda tv advert....

Probably spending a little too much time concentrating on that £3.72 - £4 price differential.

I like this one. It is, like, what they do, isn't it:

And to balance things a little...

A sense of humour from the Top Of The Pops graphics dept.

For the chart countdown, what do you do when you don't have a picture for the group Rose Royce?


Social Media that isn't very impressive...

Googleads that aren't very effective on youtube

"September 11, 2001
A Day Never F--"

Rule 1 of TOTAL Business Mastery:

sensitive advertising

Tampax getting us in the mood for the Olympics 2012:

I'm not a woman, but I still got eyes and a heart.

What's wrong with you? Go for it girls - get over those bloody hurdles.

UPDATE - noone believed the ad above was real. It's real:

QR Codes.

QR codes are so brilliant on a level that I've yet to fully grasp.

Why type in the word of the thing you're interested in,
when you can instead
open an app,
aim your camera,
take (an in-focus) picture,
and wait for the software... take you to exactly the same place instead.

It might seem like 3 times the work,
but this blog catalogues the ambitious examples of the plucky squares that wouldn't ever work, or would get you killed, if you tried going to the effort.

And this lovely blog that pretty much sums up the whole concept of QR codes:

(Still took me 5 minutes to get it...)

"Pictures of People Scanning QR Codes"

Pukka Pies England Band.

(Didn't that used to be the England Supporters Band?)
S'pose all publicity is good publicity...

Man sued for keeping twitter followers

Noah Kravitz tweeted for Phonedog as @Phonedog_Noah, but later changed his username when he left the company - taking 17,000 followers with him.

In a written statement, it said: "The costs and resources invested by Phonedog Media into growing its followers, fans and general brand awareness through social media are substantial and are considered property of Phonedog Media.
Full story here

It reminded me of the great Seth Godin post here:
"Do you have a people strategy"

Examples of branded content seizing a great disruption

Record breaking cocktail genius

I like the apparent laziness of the low-tech - Like it's from a TGI Friday branch.

When Copyright Spoils The Very Thing Its Meant To Protect - THE GREAT DISRUPTION

I try to get down the struggle that legacy media is creating for itself, and put it on a page called The Great Disruption.
There's a link below.

I can't help doing it but hate doing it, because I do it to get down things that make me laugh. But here goes anyway.


When I was 14, I got the official "Neighbours" T-shirt.
It had a huge logo across the chest in the correct blue on white fabric.
Very 1986.
But it also had a MASSIVE copyright notice right underneath it, that ran pretty much across the full width.

I didn't have a clue what a PTY was - and pretty sure most 14 year olds didn't either.
I even remember the full stop on that PTY.
Why is there legal punctuation on a Tee that's celebrating (or plugging) the show?

Because it's there perhaps for the people who made it, not for the people who (might) want to buy it.

An arse-covering exercise across a teenager's chest.

Back to 2014, my wife brought back this Wicked mug as a reminder of her great night out.

It's a lovely all-over print design, with a witty inscription on the middle (Defy Gravity)...

....and big fat ugly copyright and trademark notices all over the logo.

What's funny to me is... the thing being spoilt by the very thing that meant to protect it.

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