Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Giving us Choices or Restricting Them?

Look! It's really simple here.

Some companies are working to give us choices in the marketplace.  Some companies work very hard to limit our choices.

Google works to give me choices through innovation and by empowering businesses that surround it in the marketplace. (Android phones for instance, are available from a number of vendors, and on a number of cell phone carriers' platforms.)

Apple endeavors to limit my choices. (The iPhone will at soon be available at last, on more than one cell network, but is still available from only one vendor. And of course, some of us are having a hard time believing Steve Jobs' claim that Flash is unfit for the iPad.)

Hulu and TiVo work to give me choices. (The ability to select programming according to my wishes and schedules is no longer revolutionary, it's what I demand.)  Comcast and Viacom endeavor to limit my choices.

Memo to the marketplace:  If you actively engage in an effort to restrict the number of choices in the marketplace, we will see who you are and you will fail.  Players who work to innovate and compete in the marketplace by innovating and standing for excellence will be the winners.

Monday, May 3, 2010

What's Got My Attention?

...because the field is constantly evolving, the answers to this question change regularly.

So the real question is, what parts of the Social Media Platform consume my time and give me value?  Today I think it is these things:

Google Mail
Facebook
Twitter
LinkedIn
YouTube

There are some parts of the platform that cry out for my participation, but continue to fail me (mostly by not providing value in proportion to the amount of effort required).

MySpace
Yahoo Groups
Plaxo
Google Wave

Here's why I say that: