Who said environmentalism and fun don't go together well? The activists and activettes at Avaaz show us: It is possible! Please watch their highly entertaining spoof ad of some petrol industry guy bragging about how things used to be easier for them in the past. And then, if you will, go to the Avaaz site and donate to get this ad onto CNN for further agitation.
For the first time after we made the Amazon vs Amazee case public, Amazon's Head IP, trademark and domains called today to take up discussions again. And thanks to the support of our great community there are some good news!
As it currently looks, Amazon's lawyers will DIScontinue their action against our Swiss trademark. The bad news is that the objection against the registration of our US trademark (which is as important to Amazee's identity as the Swiss brand) will be held up.
However, we achieved a first milestone in a possibly lengthy trial – and we owe it to nobody else than you!! I'll keep you posted on the further progress of our negotiations.
Clay Shirky speaking at NTC 09. Here his words – rough style:
- Group action got easier. Organized activity is not a privilege of organizations anymore. Media are not a source of information only, but have become means for the coordination of real-life action and large scale collaborative efforts. E.g. flash mobs (spontaneous pillow fights in Toronto, ice cream on Belarus' October Square).
- The internet is global and cheap. There have been media revolutions before: Printing press, telegraph and telephone, recording of images, radio, but the internet for the first time allows for a “many to many” collaboration pattern.
- Change in media leads to a change in the way that institutions work. Even banal self-amusement tools can become a political tool in the right hands (Yes we can – Barack Obama music videos – a not so happy example: “Sing for Change” shot ).
- The “engine of progress” does not just force one big idea; it spreads a few smaller ideas into galaxy, lets people participate, iterate, make the best survive, and succeed: Indeed, here comes everybody!
It’s not the first time we come to the Silicon Valley and meet some new Swiss colleagues. The last meeting brought us together with Peter Sennhauser, a former old school journalist (Cash, Bund, Basellandschaftliche Zeitung) who decided to go new media. In 2007 he joined the blogwerk team and lives and works from San Francisco.
Now, what’s the difference between old school and new school journalism I wanted to know? According to Peter it’s the (dramatic) shift from “teacher to student centric teaching” – to a new understanding where status is not being derived from the handcraft only, but the social capability as a community manager. It’s the shift from an elevated expert to a modest professional who accepts that there’s probably more combined expertise with his audience than with himself.
But it’s also the shift to a new self-conception where the journalist is not the 4th estate anymore. The future jounalist will not be the breaking news generator (leave this to twitter), but the person who knows how to write an interesting background reportage. For example on Amazee!
It's time to face the truth (and give you, dear Reader, some insight) – Amazee is under attack. Yes, your favorite social collaboration website is being cornered, and by no less than international media giant Amazon. Some of you reading this might already have figured out why: They don't like our name. It's too close to theirs, they say (or rather, their lawyers, because a big corporation like this doesn't need to speak – it has lawyers to speak for it). Amazee resembles Amazon, and therefore they want to take away our cute name, which we (and you, hopefully) have come to like so much.
So far, this affects the Swiss and US market. If they succeed, we will not be allowed to use the brand name Amazee any more and we'll have to find a new one! Isn't that horrible? And we thought, they were just selling books. But, we decided, we are not gonna take it! We want you to raise your voice for us: Spread the story with your Twitter followers, your friends, your family and everybody who has ears and eyes. Show your support in this blog, or in the accompanying project, in which we will keep you updated on everything. Next time you need a book, go and pay a visit to your local bookstore. They'll be happy to see you! And if you drive by their HQ in Seattle, roll the window down and boo as loud as you can!
But seriously: This is very annoying for us. We are small, they are big. If it wasn't so grave an issue, it could be funny. And the best thing: We see no danger of confusion. Our name comes from the word "amazing", theirs from the mighty Amazon river. We have no intention of selling you books, CDs or whatever Amazon has in stock. We are handing you over the key to making this world a better place. Our respective companys' logos are very much different! And, last, not least: We are by far not as well-known as Amazon, so how on Earth could anyone mistake us for them? And in the very unlikely event this should ever happen, we will still not sell them books.
Vote for Amazeeng – search social action everywhere
You can vote for the Amazeeng widget by following this process: http://netsquared.org/changetheweb/vote
We must admit that it's not a that easy voting process, but it's worth the effort to help our developer friends win this contest!
Thanks a lot for your support!
What is Amazeeng?
Amazeeng allows people to spread the word about social causes and projects. It allows visitors of any website to search for Amazee projects, access them with one click and join in to support the cause. Amazeeng is based on Amazee projects. The flash widget can be embedded in any website or blog and can be customized. Visitors can use the widget search functionality to search for projects of their interest.
Here is the entry for the contest: http://netsquared.org/projects/amazeeng and you can find more information and the embed code here: http://www.amazee.com/amazeeng
What is the contest about?
Change The Web Contest asked developers all over the world to build and submit web applications and widgets that embed opportunities to make a difference on the websites, blogs, and social networks that we all visit online – and compete to win $10,000 in prizes!
Ever wanted to know who brings the e to Government? This is him: Jean-Jacques Didisheim, the open and dynamic head of Switzerland's eGovernment strategy. Yesterday I had the pleasure to meet up with him for some exchange on the digitalization of social collaboration; top-down and bottom-up. Interesting it was! Click here to learn more about Switzerland's eGovernment Strategy.
Be fast and start project number 1000. If you are the first admin of this project you are not only quite cool but we will also send you an Amazee T-Shirt!
UPDATE: We have a winner!!!