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Apr 172007
 

(Disclaimer: Writing this from a noisy, smokey opening party at the Martinez Hotel on the Croisette in Cannes)…I am currently taking in the wonders of another Milia in Cannes in the South of France on behalf of LAMP @ AFTRS. There is a great line up of speakers, organised again by my old friend Ferhan Cook, who I touched base with earlier today. I will be blogging, as last year, of significant events or activities but mostly focusing on the twenty plus great seminars. Already the climate here on the first day has been one of a mature acceptance of the deep changes going on in the TV industry to the extent that TV is now only a part of the media mix – remember Milia is paired with Mip (which used to be called MipTV). One announcement that caught my eye today was the recent teaming up of Endemol and EA on a service called Virtual Me

CANNES, FRANCE, – April 16, 2007 – Electronic Arts (NASDAQ: ERTS), the world’s leading interactive entertainment software company, and the Endemol group, a global leader in television and other audiovisual entertainment, today announced a creative partnership for the development of Virtual Me, a new digital entertainment concept that bridges the divide between traditional TV and videogames. The all-new online offering is being prepared to debut in Endemol’s top-rated Big Brother.

I actually stumbled across this not through the official channels of Milia press releases on the ground (although it was mentioned at a session later on the first day) but at a blog called “Brand Strategy” that actually references a sticky post I did called “Witnessing the Birth of an Entertainment Form” on the Virtual Big Brother from many moons ago. I hope to catch up with some Endemol folk on Thursday as we will be graced by Phil Rosedale of Linden Lab and a host of other Second Life developers in a group of sessions about brands and marketing in the metaverse. Of course I am mentioning The Project Factory to folk and some of the great ‘mixed reality’ projects we have done at LAMP to key people who are now warming to the idea of these cross-over reality, virtual world formats.

It seems though that Endemols experiment with Big Brother has been noted and it is now moving forward apace with the metaverse. The 3D web will be therefore quite likely be more swamped with TV forms and brands rather than advertising in its crudest incarnation. There is something rather obvious in the evolution implied by this statement (and indeed in many from my posts of the previous months)

Want to be a pop star? A movie star? An action star? Virtual Me offers players the chance to participate in virtual versions of TV talent shows like Fame Academy and Operacion Triunfo, game shows like Deal Or No Deal and 1 vs 100 and to form real relationships with other virtual avatars on the web.

I will be writing a daily update of events at Milia a day behind with pictures but for now a glass of champagne and getting away from the cigar smoke is the order of the evening!

© Gary Hayes 2007

Mar 232007
 

Public Affairs Convention

I know it has been ages since I last blogged but all will be revealed shortly 😉

Here is an interesting conference, with a cool tagline, that I am speaking at in May which on the surface could sound a bit dull, “The 8th National Public Affairs Convention” but in fact has a very progressive line up of topics and speakers, so hats off to the organisers. A taster of the ‘social network’ emphasis on day one which certainly points at the acceptance now that much public activity is taking place in digital spaces, of course my area here is the 3D virtual space:

10:10am Case study: Windows Vista Launching with a bang, but the buck doesn’t stop here The Windows Vista media launch attracted 140 journalists and 50-million media mentions. How did Microsoft manage to attract so much interest in another Windows sequel? Cathy Jamieson, PR manager, Microsoft Australia

11:30am What makes a story headline the news?
A run-through of some of the year’s biggest stories, showing what attracted the media’s eye.
Patricia Kavanagh, client relations manager, Media Monitors

New media update: virtual worlds, blogs and beyond
11:50am Panel. PR opportunities knocking in virtual worlds
More than 850,000 users are spending real time and money in virtual worlds such as Second Life. But will the craze last, and how valuable will it become for PR?
Abigail Thomas, Head, Strategic Innovation & Development, new media and digital services, ABC
Gary Hayes, The Project Factory. Director, LAMP and architect of Telstra, ABC and AFTRS Second Life projects
Mark Jones, IT editor, The Australian Financial Review

1:40pm What makes Australians click? Online consumer trends
• Media habits of generations Y and X, boomers and seniors
• How widely visited are blogs and ‘virtual world’ sites?
• Where do Australians consume their news and current affairs?
Lee Hopkins, co-author, Social Media white paper

2:20pm Case study with Q&A
Now we’ve been talking a year – the corporate blog
Telstra’s “Now We Are Talking” blog has set PR tongues wagging, and the man behind Australia’s first major corporate blog will answer questions on everything from censorship to strategy.
Rod Bruem, chief editor, www.nowwearetalking.com.au, Telstra

3:30pm New media panel
DIY social media: taking your message direct to the public
• MySpace and other social networking sites – PR’s forbidden fruit?
• A spinner’s guide to YouTube: who’s using it well and how?
• The ‘lessons now learnt’ rules to blogging
• Search engine optimisation PR: pulling the world to your news
Mark Helvadjian, acting head of communications, community and front doors, Yahoo!7
Nick Moraitis, online and outreach director, GetUp!
Anthony McClellan, media commentator, ABC Radio and The Australian
Darren Burden, online editorial development manager, Fairfax

To download a PDF programme click here

Posted by Gary Hayes ©2007