Three interesting bits of news:
1) From Reuters:
The International Herald Tribune has launched a new twist on the podcasting craze sweeping media companies with a service that instantly generates an audio version of any article in the newspaper.
Full article is here, and the IHT service is here. The service is brand new and having technical difficulties – I’m betting a scalability problem as a few million people want to try it – but it’s a really interesting idea. If it turns out to work well, I’ll blog more about it.
2) In a meeting yesterday someone said “First thing I do every day is check what kind of crazy stuff went up on YouTube overnight.” Online and on-demand video is just getting started. Yeah, Chad’s having a good time. Check out how fundamentally social the site is – one key to why it’s working.
3) They’ve been working publicly on this for a while, but it’s finally happening: Microsoft, Yahoo test IM partnership. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” immediately comes to mind. There will always be a tension between companies – whose automatic instinct is to be proprietary in order to defend brand and market share – and customers – who would really really like it if systems were compatible, integrated and connected. This isn’t true only of IM, of course – cellular companies are having their own version of this around their “calling circle” features. As a customer, I know what I would LIKE to have happen – but the problem is, it seems like companies only consider things like this for the sake of marketing or competitive advantage.