Tag Archives: media

Peas in a Pod us Artists and Entrepreneurs

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In my last few posts I’ve been obviously obsessed with combining the ideas of art and business.

Do art and business always go hand in hand? Of course not!  But there are times when they do.  Everyone should have the ability and a safe space to self-express and business has little to do with that.  (Self-expression is not exactly the same as being an artist or creating art – if you want to argue with this please feel free). Business is really an exchange of goods or services – forget the dollar sign if it makes you uncomfortable.  Think of business as a way to fulfill a need that you have (instead of a want which is what we do in consumerist culture). Cool?  Cool.

Artists and entrepreneurs share similar characteristics and our work has similar properties:

  • We both have great passion
  • We move from initial concept through stages of development to a final product or work
  • We are constantly looking to explore and learn
  • We have to deal with a lot of constructive (and not so constructive) criticism
  • Financing or Funding our dreams is a hefty aspect of our work
  • We find what we do very satisfying
  • We are willing to invest emotionally, physically and financially into our projects
  • If we fail (or deem something a failure) we will eventually get back up and try again or try something new
  • We are risk takers (even if the risks seem small)

If you are a CEO or a COO or a HR Manager or a Team Lead (essentially someone who is allowed to make final decisions) you should consider hiring more artistically inclined people to your teams.   Artists aren’t sensitive – we are critical and analytical. We synthesize great amounts of information and see patterns and themes in disparate ideas.  Business leaders always tell their teams to think outside of the box and then put them in a closed bare walled boardroom to brainstorm.    I have no idea why so many brainstorming sessions (even in creative industries) take place inside of board rooms – this is brainstorming not contract negotiation.  You would actually have to be a very skilled artist to make use of a blank space like a boardroom to create  brilliant ideas without external inspiration- and let’s be honest the vast majority of your staff are not creatively inclined.  Alternatively you could provide time or encouragement for your team members to express their creative sides or propose ideas which are tangent to your business.

Artists – we need to be more business saavy – the world of the record label, large gallery, movie studio or television network, essentially the idea of big media business currently is in pieces and in future will be replaced by the Apples’, Googles’ and Yahoos’ of the world. These companies are not made for artists – they are entrepreneurs – they use art, music, literature to further their businesses – but they are not in the business of art. Google is not really interested in meaning – they are interested in information – these are very very different ideas. And in practice Apple is not interested in creativity – they are interested in facilitating creativity.  Now of course, inherent in the Apple process are aspects of art and design – but they use these as tools for their software business (as discussed by Colin Gibbs in the post “As Always Mobile Music faces Uncertain Future” Jul 17 2010 on GigaOm.com).

The profitable and meaningful media future will require a hybrid  in the media industry.   A hybrid company that has the brains of a technology based corporation and the heart and soul of a community based artistic organization.    Any thoughts on building the foundations or staples of the a sustainable new media ecosystem or the real ticket – the business model to support that ecosystem?  If you have the monetization aspect down – I’d love to treat you out to coffee ;).

Are we being social right now?

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Sooooo……What do you think is the culmination of this social media frenzy?

ICQ, Yahoo chat rooms, MSN Messenger, Hi-Five, Facebook, Myspace,  Twitter, Google Buzz….etc….

Social interactions with people you would never really interact with in the flesh. The virtual self seems to be more appealing – how do we aggregate all of this extraneous information?

Are we trying to communicate that which can not be said?! I wonder. McLuhan believed that eventually media technologies would lead to a ‘post-literate’ world, where the written word and language would be superseded by the visual medium.

Hmm.  Well, that’s hardly the case is it?!  All of our ‘social’ networking is highly contingent upon the written language!! Gah! Literacy is a HUGE aspect of how we now communicate in our ICT (information and communication technology) laden world!

But is literature social?  The written word is not entirely a social thing – I mean you are reading this and I have written it and in some way we are sharing the experience – but not in ‘real time’, not with any meaningful fleshy connection (no sexual innuendo intended here).  Doesn’t being social inherently include a human connection which is predicated upon a physical human characteristic? (Touch, taste, smell, sound…you get the idea).  We are experiencing a social moment together in some sort of suspended time warp where the human aspect has to be ‘guestimated’ – sarcasm and intonation fail miserably over social networks.

Even if we can have updates that are fractions of a minute or second apart (ahem..twitter), it’s not nearly as quickly as you could transmit a message by just talking to me in person. Granted of course that these technologies are leaping great distances in short periods of time, What is the need for people in the same place to have an interface between them?  More over – why do I need to know INSTANTANEOUSLY what is going on in the world?!  How have our social interactions been hijacked by technologies created by the inherently anti-social?  We sit in our own rooms distanced greatly not only by physical geography but by a constant interface through which we must first pass our message.  I suppose telephones did the same thing – but then with telephones there was a physical connection still – the human voice.

Oh – and does Blogging count as a social media?!  Is a cork based real life bulletin board a social media?  So confusing!

Obviously this is just the beginning of a phase or stage of communications technologies – we have yet to plateau.  Where are we going – where is this taking us?  After you have read this,  are we now ‘friends’?! (I’m a pretty great friend who always has chocolate on hand just so you know)

So many questions!!