Content Commerce

ECNext, an ecommerce service provider for business-to-business publishers, has changed its name to Manta Media.

Posted Oct 02, 2009

As we move into fall, the year-long revival of the paid content argument shows no sign of easing.

Posted Oct 01, 2009

Until fairly recently, if you wanted to publish a news article or magazine feature, it required a large staff and huge presses housed in vast buildings. It took great wealth to buy the means to publish and a factorylike process to sell the ads, produce the news, and distribute the product. Because newspaper production was well beyond the means of most people, we relied on newspaper and magazine publishing companies with the requisite resources to produce the news for us, and in return, they charged large sums of money for display and classified ads-and they thrived. Today, that's all changed.

Posted Sep 28, 2009

It's not news that magazines are anorexic, newspapers are dropping in droves, and industry leaders are calling for everything from forbidding the use of headlines for linking to putting up pay walls around anything and everything. It feels frantic, even desperate.

Posted Sep 28, 2009

If memory serves, the digital revolution was offered up to us as a great new driver of efficiency. Even at the most basic level of owning a PC, we were told that these new machines would organize our records and even clarify our ways of thinking. Really? Has anyone looked behind my desk lately?

Posted Sep 09, 2009

PaymentOne, a provider in alternative payments for digital merchants, announced it closed a $7 million round of equity and debt financing led by AER Investments LLC.

Posted Aug 25, 2009

Jambool, Inc., operator of the Social Gold virtual currency and payments platform, has raised $5 million in a Series B fundraising round led by Madrona Venture Group.

Posted Aug 21, 2009

Because of the increased popularity of smartphones, including the iPhone, which can connect to the internet through Wi-Fi, mobile operators have been losing access to billing programs that once ran through the operator's network.

Posted Jul 31, 2009

Swets, a subscription services company, announced the launch of its eDeal Renewal Service.

Posted Jul 28, 2009

As I write this at the end of 1Q 2009, things look especially grim for business information on almost any platform. In print, across 200 B2B titles that ad auditing group IMS tracks, ad pages were down in January and February 28.3% from the same 2-month span in 2008.

Posted Jul 20, 2009

Endeca Technologies, Inc., a search applications company, announced the Endeca Extend partner program which helps its customers integrate eCommerce and Media technologies directly into Endeca-powered sites.

Posted Jun 09, 2009

The good news is that professionally created content is not inherently less valuable. The bad news is that it has become unhinged from any viable means of support.

Posted May 28, 2009

Gabriels Technology Solutions, a private-label ecommerce provider, announced the recent re-launch of The New York Times Real Estate Portal along with its complementary site Great Homes and Destinations, which focuses on national and international real estate.

Posted May 22, 2009

To rescue the beleaguered newspaper industry, there has been talk of a return to paid content (not so sure about the soundness of trying to unring a bell), nonprofit endowments, or government bailouts. Yet, as we've seen with the auto industry, throwing money at complex business problems does not suffice. Consider the music business, beset by the increasing legal and illegal distribution of music online. Today, successful musicians are giving music away to make money on concert tickets. Deeply entrenched, seemingly fundamental models have to be rebuilt in light of digital distribution and the expectation of free content, despite the fact that making quality content costs money.

Posted May 01, 2009

When I was a bartender back in my college days, I often marveled at what people were willing to do to get a free t-shirt. OK, it went beyond marveling: Sometimes the bouncers and I would really push it, trying to find a point at which the crowd would cry out, "No, we will not do a chicken dance while singing ‘The Tide Is High' just to get that Jägermeister t-shirt." The thing is, there was almost always someone willing.

Posted Apr 02, 2009

There is no getting around it. This column's moniker begs for a snarky retort in these dark times, so I may as well beat you to the punch line. By the time you read this, I expect that more than a few startups that made a big splash last year will be running out of cash, fading away, and/or selling out cheap.

Posted Mar 30, 2009

Womens Radio, a service of Women's Online Media and Education Network, released an interview with EContent magazine editor Michelle Manafy and Marydee Ojala, editor of Online magazine titled "Empowering Your Business With EContent."

Posted Mar 24, 2009

Scott Abel of The Content Wrangler Interviews Quark's Michael Boses about the Need for User-Friendly XML Authoring Tools and the Role of Structured Content in Dynamic Publishing

Posted Mar 22, 2009

Time Inc. is experimenting with a customized magazine that combines reader-selected sections from eight publications.

Posted Mar 20, 2009

When Speakaboos began work on a website of storybook videos for "children and their caregivers to enjoy together," research into available commerce solutions revealed that most traditional payment gateways charge costly transaction fees that would undermine the pay per download business model the company envisioned.

Posted Mar 05, 2009

As the eyes of old print, radio, and TV media turn to the internet for a bridge to take them across the current media business abyss, one troubling fact is becoming abundantly clear: The "real money" isn't there yet. Top executives at TV networks, magazine companies, and even newspapers have known for a while that on-air minutes and print pages sell at much higher rates and produce more revenue in most cases than even the most ambitious digital models.

Posted Mar 05, 2009

For decades, the fee versus free debate has carried on—with content industry players digging in deep at each end of the spectrum. Yet a more moderate model seems to be emerging: freemium. While not an entirely new concept in other sectors, traditional content players have only recently begun to leverage the business model in which the owner or service provider offers basic features to users at no cost and charges a premium for supplemental or advanced features. The term, which combines the words free and premium, was coined by Jarid Lukin of Alacra in 2006 after venture capitalist Fred Wilson developed the concept. With the launch of its Alacra Street Pulse product this week, the company is drinking its own catchphrase Kool-Aid.

Posted Feb 18, 2009

My column's moniker has a cruel irony to it this month as companies peer into the abyss of a business decline with no apparent bottom. Follow the Money only begs two questions nowadays: What money? Where do we follow it to? Like a fog-locked airport with a damaged radar dish, the emedia fleet feels grounded as we edge toward a wholly uncertain 2009.

Posted Jan 28, 2009

Technology providers who not only recognize the necessity and difficulty of the local and global content marketplace, but are there to help: From analytics to location awareness, content management to translation management, translation services to language specific search solutions, there are a range of solutions that will enable organizations to adapt to the needs of the new consumer.

Posted Jan 20, 2009

A new study from international research firm Parks Associates finds consumer demand for networking features will drive the next wave of consumer electronics purchasing, particularly for imaging and mobile devices such as digital cameras, photo frames, and mobile phones.

Posted Jan 06, 2009