Kevin Spacey Speech – It’s the Creative Stupid!

Kevin Spacey’s recent speech to the Edinburgh Television Festival has hit all the right nerves. After the critically acclaimed success of his new TV series “House of Cards” on Netflix, Spacey sets the tone for how the production of story telling through television should and must change. His ‘pitch’ as an election slogan is “It’s the Creative Stupid!”.

One of the key points comes during his presentation when he mentions the number of pilots produced each year to pacify risk averse television executives. The numbers shock the uninitiated when you realise how much the combined number of pilot episodes cost, how many actually make it to a series and how few are renewed before any member of the audience can connect with a character or the destination of the story arc. In fact for many series the story line is sabotaged with last minute land mines in order to ‘draw a conclusion’ to an unrenewed 13 episode series.

Below you can be inspired by the 5 min snapshot of Spacey’s key points but do yourself a favour and visit the 47 min full version to hear a story of inspiration and sense that challenges the broadcasters and distributors of content. As you start thinking about what you enjoy, remember that you are the audience. You, just like every one else hate, hate being asked to take a bite of the cake and then having the cake taken away just as the sugar high kicked in.

Leave a comment below. What series do you miss that crashed and burned in the first season? Have you seen the “Joseph Fiennes” curse that left the actor high and dry after Flash Forward and then Camelot ‘the series’ was renamed Camelot ‘the mini-series’?

Audiences don’t like to be abandoned by media producers. The new age of television is about global release for the social shared experience. Television is no longer about sequential seasons and budget cycles, its about audience appetite and content creative response. Our vacuum should pull the new talent to centre stage and push the boundaries of story telling to burn brighter and longer because you no longer are constrained by the ‘pitch’. Today your story should be told because it can be told. It’s the Creative Stupid.

I hate television. I hate it as much as peanuts. But I can’t stop eating peanuts.
Orson Welles

For the full 47min Kevin Spacey speech try this link.


What would Moses and Gutenberg Think?

Back in 2006 Bobby Gruenewald, a Pastor in the US, thought of the idea of an app for the Bible while walking through a security line at the airport. It wasn’t quite the epiphany in the shower environment but this concept has grown from its initial launch as an iPhone Bible app designed by a 19yo in their church to five years later being an app on all phone and tablet platforms including some eReaders.

What is now extraordinary is that the growth of the Bible app is knocking on the door of 100,000,000 app installs. The statistics of what people are using their Bible app for each second is simply amazing and is easier explained by the group’s recent webcast on June 11th available below. Here they outlined the growth of the project and where they see it going.

Whether it was Moses who wrote the first five books of the Bible or Mr Gutenberg and his printing press who took distribution to a whole new level they would both be astounded at what engagement has come through this use of app technology. The question that could be asked is why in the modern age is this activity so successful. Is it the timeless content or the engaging technology?

Rather than keeping the project in house the Bible app has created strategic partnerships with many churches, denominations and publishing houses so that the content available in the app is wide in the range of Bible related activities it provides. The app builds on a personal user experience by allowing individuals to use their own collected versions and languages of the Bible as well as save bookmarks and follow personalised reading plans.

The next step for the group is to see if they can achieve 100 Million installs before July 10th which would be their 5th anniversary since the initial launch. To muster support a number of activities have been created to inspire users to share their app experience. A website has been created at and the app has new features in its menu system to encourage app sharing. What is also unique is the fan base that is sponsoring the app through their advocacy from church leaders to football players.

If you haven’t tested the Bible App here is a link to all the available platforms including iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone, Windows 8, Java, Symbian, Mobile Web and Kindle Fire.

[button link=”” type=”icon” icon=”paper” newwindow=”yes”] YouVersion Bible App[/button]


Flickr Upgrades Free Accounts to One Terabyte

Yahoo under the leadership of new CEO, Marissa Mayer are making more dramatic moves in cyberspace than a spinning Tardis. With the expectation that they will soon acquire Tumblr for $1Billion, a long waited for upgrade to Flickr was announced today. For the many free and new users this Flickr upgrade means one FREE TERABYTE of online photo storage. In Flickr’s own blog they put a terabyte in perspective with this statement;  “Well, you could take a photo every hour for forty years without filling one.”

Many businesses keep photos of their products, staff and events online as part of their promotional resources. Like the video scenario where we would encourage a business to be on YouTube for audience or Vimeo for quality there is the same option in the photo realm. You can have your photos on Facebook for audience but for a professional storage and presentation arena Flickr still holds its own so this is good news for storing your business photos. Now with Flickr’s aethetic upgrade the experience gains in the presentation stakes.

Flickr Upgrade

For those who have been paying the Pro account at USD$24.95 a year, there will be little celebration apart from a tidy up. However for the masses the Flickr upgrade shows Flickr is fighting back in the photo storage space by offering 1 Terabyte of free but ad supported storage for the family album.  There will be two paid options available as part of the path forward. For $49.99 a year your Terabyte of pics can be viewed ad-free. However as a pro photographer you may also be looking for extra space. This is where you can buy an extra terabyte of ad-free space for $499 a year.

Flickr Upgrade

If you don’t have a Flickr account, now is the time to get hold of one. Getting the right user name protects your brand and allows you to label your links with your brand as part of the digital breadcrumbs. Below we give you some tips on how to get the most out of your Flickr experience.

Flickr Upgrade

I have always been a fan of using Picasa for PC based photo editing and management. Many new digital cameras come with their brands own software but to be frank they often suck in comparison to Picasa. Not only that, but as we can have a propensity to change hardware your move to a new camera can mean a change of software. Remain agnostic and download Picasa from this link. The next move is to add a Flickr button to Picasa to make the connection to your Flickr account seamless. This little add-on makes the job simple. Picasa2Flickr

Flickr Upgrade

If you have a Flickr Pro account, how do you feel about the changes. If you take the advice of this blog and sign up for your free Terabyte then drop back and leave a comment on what you think of this new offering from the Yahoo family. One thing you will note in the promotions is the dropping of the ‘e’ vowel from the verbage. While Flickr had led the way, we can’t help feel it has a small connect with the upcoming purchase of Tumblr.

Surprise your Team

Recently Budweiser beer in the US did a ‘Flash Fans’ promotional event where they brought in busloads of 600 roaring fans with cheerleaders, TV coverage, commentators and big screen replays to a small town recreational ice hockey match between two social teams of the Amigos and the Generals.

What would normally have had an audience of a dozen turned into a celebration of sport and passion. The two teams went to the ice as ‘Regular Joes’ and as the crowd came in they were transformed to feel like superstars.

As you go into your day, think about who are the “Regular Joes” in your life and who could do with a fan, a cheer, a shout of “He Shoots, He Scores!”.

Here is the making of Flash Fans: 2012 Budweiser Official Big Game Commercial

Seth Godin Explains Tribes

In a recent presentation I did on social networking I referenced author and marketing guru Seth Godin. In this video from Loic Le Meur, Seth Godin explains why you need a tribe and why he is not on twitter.

Seth’s latest book “Tribes” helps us define the need for leaders to come forward because there are communities that need someone to provide direction.

In the area I was working at the time of Christian media, we have a message but are we willing to step to the front of a community and share our direction by saying “walk this way”.

Have a listen to Loic as he presses all the right buttons to get to the heart of the matter with Seth.

Updated: 18 Jan 2018

CRASH – What a tangled web we weave!

I sat up and watched this movie on Sunday night expecting to see an eclectic mish-mash of stories contrived into a ‘film’ designed to profile ‘A’ list wannabe actors and former ‘A’ list try-to-be actors.

Boy, was I in for a surprise, no wonder this dark horse scooped the pool. Despite the racist cynicism and a high degree of bad language, this movie impacts you in so many ways. The characters show how anyone on a bad day can make those eternal choices we all regret.

Looking through the eyes of broken people we see how co-dependency doesn’t come only in the walls of that place we call home. The real challenge with Crash is to see life through someone else’s eyes. I’ll come back to this one, but I have to say the reason for seeing crash is to find out how we all need a ‘cloak of invincibility’.