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August 23, 2006


Maria making pictures

Interesting story. I never thought people are so tuned into Cricket. I guess this example is proving the concept of distribution on demand networks.

Thank you for sharing this story with me !

Barry L. Young

Not Fair!

The first extended vacation I have taken since the Eisenhower Administration and just look at the two enormities of the eco-tech-media dialectic taking place in my absence!

I've been receiving the D.G.A. magazine for MAYBE ten? twenty? years. So seldom is there anything of interest that I have stopped paying too much attention. I mean, there are only about thirty black members of the D.G.A., so for the magazine to put all of them in every issue (to front that they are an enlightened body of politically zealous, self-sacrificing altruists trying to fix our nations karma...) well, it means the content is a wee bit... stilted?

However, my dander is like way UP; their editorial staff apparently have been waiting til I was cloistered in the high sierras for a month's respite from my eternal jog on the mobius strip that passes for an "industry". While seeking the rare bit of oxygen in Paiute Pass, or- I admit it- an imaginary internet café above the tree line, they, the Guild, hustled you, C.A., to an all-you-can-eat digital seminar in their headquarters. (That venue, financed by my pension accounts, is designed to really wow anyone who hasn't been to Vegas).

Dammit, that was an event I would have surfaced for (the last time being in the early 90's, when I took my kids to see Santa at the Guild yulefest}. I've been sending your original Long Tail Wired article along with my business plans for an individualized, interactive tv network (with optional 3 screen virtual viewing space, rocker plate equipped) called Intuitive.tv. Honestly, I have been meaning to ask you to join the board, but I've no producer at the moment, so I'm a little behind myself on AdSyS, even I'm though ahead of where I'd be had I gotten there (or here) some time ago in the future.

The article alone converted me to being the polemically grounded paragon of what we all know "Wired-Man" must be- the stringent standards he must measure up to; the impression he makes as he represents. I left directing and its erotic cachet of illusionary power to create a new economic model for 'the biz'. My God! What will happen to me when I read your book? Will I become so irreversably "Andersonian", so possessed of your techno-aura, with an Ed-in-Chief's patina of real humility, so that even what I drive will become unimportant? (Lexus Hybrid SUV).

God forfend!

The second catastrophe was my inexcuseable ignorance of the PUBLISHING (break a leg) of your book and subsequent review by WSJ's Lee Gomes. This critique, innocent enuff ON THE SURFACE, felt to me like a... glove-slap-to-the-face of all us active Andersonians, aka "Chris-py's Critters" [many of us are now sporting symbolic Long Tails of wool or leather as a public rebuttal to all the 'Lee Gomes' everywhere) Mind now, I'm not averring in any way that Msr. Gomes is a major vapor/spokes-wankster for all over-compensated CEO's and their modern day merlins, namely the conjuring CFOs of this weeks Fortunate Five Hundred.

In short, our man Lee had written a fatuous, ill- informed review of your book- although it made up for those negatives by appending more negatives- i.e., smugness and "snarkitude"- therefore making his critique a cumulative double negative which equals... praise, kudos, compliments. Bravo! it also benefited enormously from an easy-going assonance that required no hyped-out, overly amped alliterations, abandonned and alone, amongst an almost endless array of outrageous overstatements. Snap! .

Anyway, out of respect and admiration for you, I have taken the high road less travelled to Scotland with the Gomester 1.0 in my tardy, but impassioned, comments sent so hastily late to this respected (rrrrrr) colonist- damn. i meant co...lu...m... nist- columinesce...wrong... wait a sec [1,2,3,4,5,6,8,9,7,10- ed.) coluMnist. 'kay. That's good enough.

LOL (but truly a fan of someone w intelligence who ponders aloud for the rest of us to eavesdrrop on- that's you Mr. Ed-en-Chef!)

B. L. Young, "the Bear"
Head Servant to the Stockholders of Intuitve.tv

Appended are my comments to aforementioned... Columnater.

Mr. Gomes,

Re: Your comments on The Long Tail (I've been backpacking in the high Sierras- i just got back yesterday and caught up on a month of reading- hence, the shocking lateness of my heartfelt response to your review of The Long Tail. I have felt strongly enough about this topic to include Chris Anderson's original Wired article with all the business plans I have sent out for my latest venture)

Because you have been an investigative reporter for a long dues-paying stint, it is evident that you have vouchsafed a strong matrix of observant executives as sources (who are doubtlessly excellent contacts on all crucial economic issues). However, I think it's possible that your analysis of the Long Tail phenomonen might be somewhat skewed- primarily because this contemplation is based on data and observation from corporate marketers (Amazon et al.) that deal primarily in the milieu of "hit" or popular products- products and services "with legs"; "tail" products are most likely beneath their radar.

Whatever the Amazons and Netflix sell, be it obscure or no, they bundle it with the popular books and DVD's that are selling in large numbers, hoping to increase those numbers even more. That's the way they prosper, on a business model that squeezes more and more profits from gross, then 'grosser' net profits (usually by offering less and less service- the CFO's thought up this brilliant plan).

Chris Anderson is more steeped in the growing culture of idiosyncratic, arcane goings-on, including websites that deal in the odds-and-ends that individualistic customers like myself are so delighted to find.

From antique swords to do-it-yourself vintage trailer kits, out of small towns, 'burbs and inner cities, these new sellers -- and buyers -- have surfaced too recently to be trackable; but as more and more sensitive indicators feel their way into the increasingly colorful and exciting "market of everything imaginable", Mr. Anderson's theory, I predict, will be borne out as a "parallel universe" market-place. Thus, I really thought you missed the point of "The Long Tail", and the implications of how Google's powerful search engines will ultimately affect the future of marketing. Granted, it won't become the bread and butter of the major 'congloms'. But the ease of renting, buying, leasing, downloading, and comparing price and quality through the "new media" will ultimately reduce the attractiveness of offline, corporate venues such as malls, as well as less regulated marketplaces such as flea markets, craft show, and swap meets and make shrewd and/or canny transactions just one click from 'done deals'.

With respect to marketing strategy testing, I have found it to be less than scientific -- lacking double blinds, control groups, or objective questions. As a commercial director whose commercials tested out as highly effective sales instruments at the back end (provided I was permitted to do my job), I sometimes experienced having my shot lists cut back in the middle of a shoot -- at great expense and with frequently disastrous results -- because the client's head of marketing arrived on the actual shoot day and proclaimed, "We have testing that proves viewers don't like edits," or whatever was the current pet peeve of advertisers financing the tests. Where front-end testing is utilized, the end product is as good or as bad as the testing; and often, the creators and distributors of the product know better than the pundits what will work in actual practice.

I include Chris Anderson's original Long Tail article with every business plan i send out. To be entirely open with my future stockholders, I will now quote from your column's content to give them a contrasting viewpoint.



So I guess I told HIM. If anybody else makes trouble, or even indulges in 'feint praise', let us Long Tailers in the Fans of Chris franchises deal with any problems summarily, and all conclusive-like... see?

Again... accolades and huzzahs all around to you and yours.

still the bear. 'snap' and 'YO'.

John Wagner

Chris ... not to take away from the point you're making, but actually there is quite a bit of soccer being broadcast now in the United States.

Between ABC (MLS All-Star Game and championship match), ESPN (MLS weekly matches), Fox Soccer Channel (all soccer, all the time), HDNet and the regional Fox sports affiliates, it's pretty easy to catch multiple games live every weekend. There's also PPV of the English Premiership.

But your point is still valid ... there is growing recognition that these broadcasts are valuable even to a niche audience.

Alex Barnett

Hey Chris - I never thought I'd be reading an article of yours covering the convergence of cricket and the long tail... ;-)

As an FYI, you should know of Willow.tv (owned by DirectTV). As an englishmen living in the US it was one of the first things I tried to get sorted when I moved over in early 2005: watching cricket here. I paid a good sum of money to watch the Ashes (England vs. Australia series) on my PC. Given that we finally beat the Aussies after 17 years of losing the series, I can say this was money well spent. The actual quality of the stream was excellent. The service is only avaiable to US IPs. (I blogged this some time ago: http://blogs.msdn.com/alexbarn/archive/2005/06/28/433350.aspx).

After I blogged this I got a load of mails explaining I was overpaying: they explained to me that groups of friends who couldn't afford the subscription as individuals were taking it turns to act as the host at home, inviting 20+ friends over to watch the game (mainly cricket-mad indians) and each paying a small fee to the host for the privilege...

Live sport over the web is going to be an enourmous business. Great article.


John Thacker

"And then there's that whole soccer thing, which is seemingly mainstream everywhere but the US,"

It's also pretty niche in India and Pakistan. Amusing, since you go on to talk about the subcontinent in the context of cricket right below.

Chetan Sharma

As a cricket fan since birth, i say your post is spot on :-)

christmas stocking fillers

Thanks for really nice post! I must say that cricket is the only game that everybody crazy about. I must say in ad world cricket plays very important role.

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The Long Tail by Chris Anderson

Notes and sources for the book

FREE was available in all digital forms--ebook, web book, and audiobook--for free shortly after the hardcover was published on July 7th. The ebook and web book were free for a limited time and limited to certain geographic regions as determined by each national publisher; the unabridged MP3 audiobook (get zip file here) will remain free forever, available in all regions.

Order the hardcover now!