Ouch. My feet hurt. No one told me there would be so much walking at SXSW! Now I know why people by those Segways! Sorry if I sound like a whiner, but there is a lot of ground to cover here at SXSW. In the morning, I left the conference center for a session about 6 blocks away. Just getting across the conference center is at least 3 blocks of walking. Tomorrow I’m using the pedometer!
On to the Day
Well, it was a great day. I met some very interesting people including the folks over at BeaconFire.com. They help non-profits create and execute a web strategy. I also met a celebrity in the anime world, Christine Auten. Christine has been voice cast in over 50 Anime series as well as some directing and script writing. Being a multi-talented person, Christine is also big on the communications side of SXSW, Interactive Special Projects.
Although I wasn’t able to get in on a couple of the sessions I wanted today (I recommend you find out which sessions will be in the highest demand and get there early), I was able to sit in on 2 crowdsourcing sessions. It was very interesting to hear people speak about their first hand experience with crowdsourcing. The first session was anchored by the3six5. The second crowdsourcing session I attended today took a different and slightly less favorable look at crowdsourcing. When is it a problem when you take the crowdsourced results and turn them into for profit items?
Jonathan Zittrain did an amazing job of stretching my brain on crowdsourcing, while he also leaft enough to the imagination to question the ethics of crowdsourcing when it applies to solving all kinds of problems. I wish I could cover this more, but my feeble attempts wouldn’t do it justice. You’re better off searching youtube or trying to get your hands on the SXSW session.
As we should all do after a good session, I’ve sketched out some ideas for when I return to the office.
I spent a little time in the Deviant Art room checking out their business model and technology. If you don’t know about Deviant Art, well, let me tell you. It’s a community of artists from all over the world. Talk about harnassing the power of the web, well they’ve done it. 16 million members, 2.2 BILLION pageviews per month, 140,000 uploads per day (140 million to date), 12,000 new members per day, and an Alexa rating of 120! THAT’S AMAZING! Angelo, the CEO, has a pretty sweet deal going on with Deviant Art. Advertising revs, contest revs, subscription revenue, and selling art for the artists and splitting the revs. Quite the entreprenuer. That’s what happens when you solve a market problem and use the internet to do it. Website estimators value the site at $19 million, but knowing Angelo’s business model, I think they are way off. It wouldn’t surprise me if the site is making $50+ million. If not now, it shouldn’t be long before it does.
Day 4 begins tomorrow.