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3 Out Of 10 U.S. Internet Users Frequently Delete Their Cookies

April 17th, 2007

According to a new report from comScore, about 31 percent of U.S. Internet users cleared their cookies during the month. This figure, if correct, could lead to site visitor counts to be off by as much as 150%.

While comScore probably can’t be considered an unbiased source – they offer a browser-based approach to tracking user behavior – it’s clear that random cookies are becoming less and less useful as a tool for identifying unique users.

“There is a common perception that third-party cookie deletion rates should be significantly higher than first-party cookie deletion rates,” said comScore CEO Dr. Magid Abraham. These findings suggest that selective cookie management is not prevalent, a fact that comScore confirmed via a survey, with only 4 percent of Internet users indicating that they delete third-party but not first-party cookies.”

Some will use comScore’s numbers as a reason to slam Web analytics, or as justification for arguring that Web ad prices are inflated. comScore’s numbers aren’t entirely surprising, though, and serve as a reminder to make sure you’re measuring the right things. An example of this is Google’s AdSense, which tracks views, but charges you based on click-through actions.

It’s Time for that Internet Video Strategy

August 3rd, 2006

Earlier in the year, I wrote that 2006 Will Be a Tipping Point for Online Media, and gave 10 reasons why.

In case that didn’t convince you, check out this graph of the unprecedented rise of YouTube:

MySpace Vs YouTube

This Alexa graph charts the reach of YouTube vs MySpace. YouTube has gone from nowhere to being one of the top sites on the Internet, and there’s no sign of its growth slowing anytime soon. Meanwhile, MySpace, the poster child for social networking sites, appears to have reached a plateau.
Expect a rush of video portal announcements, as companies decide that it’s time for the Internet video strategy.

Lewin Group Founder Featured in Denver Post

July 5th, 2006

The Lewin Group’s Elisabeth McLaury Lewin recently talked with the Denver Post’s Steven Rosen about the trend among art museums – and fans of fine art – to produce art podcasts, or artcasts:

“It’s neat to see museums – even low-budget museums – do high-tech things,” said Elisabeth McLaury Lewin, publisher of PodcastingNews.com. “And it may drive new participation in the fine arts as the traditional audience is aging and dying.”

“It seems in the near future people will have an opportunity to interact with a podcast, just like people can interact with blogs,” said Lewin, of PodcastingNews.com. “And podcasters don’t necessarily have to bow to a curator’s view. They can be irreverent.”

The article appeared in the July, 4, 2006 Denver Post.

2006 Will Be a Tipping Point for Online Media

April 18th, 2006

Lewin Group founder James Lewin’s recent article for IT World, 2006 Will Be a Tipping Point for Online Media, takes a look at the changing world of online media:

For the first ten years of mainstream Internet use, online media has been considered alternative – an alternative to television, radio, print and magazines. Online media had a limited audience, largely a result of bandwidth limitations, but also because web builders were still figuring out how to use Internet multimedia effectively.

10 years on, broadband penetration in the home is pushing 40% in the US, and is much higher in some areas of the world. Just as importantly, many sites are finding ways to use online media effectively. For these reasons and others, it looks like 2006 will be a tipping point for online media.

Lewin Group Founders in San Francisco Gate

March 23rd, 2006

While we were at South by Southwest (a new media conference) this year, we had a chance to talk to Dan Fost of the San Franscisco Gate.

Apparently, Fost doesn’t completely buy the whole Web 2.0 meme:

I sure drank a lot of Kool-Aid 2.0 at South by Southwest last week. I don’t know what was in the stuff, but I’m catching some of the excitement that’s coursing through the Internet again.

The whole Web 2.0 thing, though, is asking for ridicule. Even most of the companies that fit in the Web 2.0 category aren’t crazy about the phrase (perhaps because it invites the moniker Bubble 2.0). But at least it’s a handy rubric.

It makes me realize how tribal the chatter is at these tech conferences. Linguists would probably love them, if they could understand them.

James Lewin, who runs Web publications on podcasting and other topics with his wife, Elisabeth, in Des Moines, Iowa, heard enough of the blather at South by Southwest to string together a typically meaningless pitch: “We’re monetizing the long tail globally and impactfully in the Web 2.0 space with tags.”

To come up with your own pitch, try this Web site from blogger Andrew Wooldridge and you’ll be streaming RSS-based widgets via Shockwave in no time.

For the record, we are monitizing the long tail globally and impactfully in the Web 2.0 space, with tags.

via SFGate

Thinking Web 2.0

December 28th, 2005

Web 2.0, the idea that a second-generation Web is developing, has been getting a lot of attention lately. Sites are describing themselves as “Web 2.0″ sites, investors are looking for “Web 2.0″ sites, and it’s becoming a popular tool for framing discussions about the future of the Internet.

It’s also generating its share of controversy, with many thinking that the idea is vaporware or not much more than marketing hype. It’s a flawed term, because many of the ideas that it encapsulates don’t really have anything to do with the Web, but instead relate to other ways of working over the Internet. Also, most of the so-called “2.0″ ideas have been important parts of the Internet since early on.

I’m not convinced yet that Web 2.0 represents much more than a renewed since of optimism in the potential of the Internet. Nevertheless, it’s worth reviewing as a framework for looking at the future of your website or ebusiness, and at the future of the Internet itself.

Offsite Link: Thinking Web 2.0

Podcasting News Publisher Elisabeth Lewin Featured at TechWeb

November 19th, 2005

The Lewin Group’s Elisabeth Lewin is featured in an excellent article by Rachel Sokol at TechWeb about trends in online content.

“If you can’t find a show you like, you can, fairly easily, create your own show,” said Elisabeth Lewin, publisher of PodcastingNews.com, which offers tutorials on how to use services like Blogger or Feedburner to create and host podcasts. Sites like iPodder.org and iTunes.com are podcast clients that allow users to subscribe to every version of a specific podcast. Via these clients, each production of a show is automatically downloaded to a users’ hard drive or media player.

Lewin believes podcasting will keep growing until broadcasters look at podcasting first and radio as an afterthought. “Podcasts can make money from Internet distribution in addition to radio distribution,” she said.

VoIP: Hot Internet Technology, or Low-Carb Vodka?

November 8th, 2005

Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP), is one of the hottest technologies affecting businesses today. Unfortunately, it’s also a tech term that tends to make people’s eyes roll back into their heads while they become catatonic.

So, instead of talking about VoIP, this article looks at billion-dollar technology deals, vodka, seedy adult book shops, hot new European cars, illegal MP3s and controversial person-to-person file sharing applications.

If I mention VoIP along the way, don’t worry; I’ll get back to the juicy stuff as quickly as possible.

Offsite Link: VoIP: Hot Internet Technology, or Low-Carb Vodka?

Elisabeth Lewin Featured in Wired

August 15th, 2005

The Lewin Group’s Elisabeth Lewin was featured for an article for Wired:

Why a recap and no full show? While audio-only versions of sitcoms and soaps might appeal to hard-core fans, networks aren’t free to repurpose everything wholesale, thanks to copyright issues. In many cases, the music on TV shows is cleared for a few broadcasts, but not to sit forever on someone’s hard drive or iPod, said Elisabeth Lewin, publisher of Podcasting News.

“The very nature of a podcast means … you can recopy it and share it freely,” Lewin said. “The people who hold the rights aren’t really going to be wild about the idea.”

Gnomedex 5 demos future of conferences

June 29th, 2005

Seattle recently played home to Gnomedex 5, a gathering of bloggers, publishers and developers interested in the intersection of technology and publishing.

There was a lot to report on from Gnomedex. Developer and influential blogger Dave Winer discussed his latest work, and his vision for the future of the web. Microsoft gave the first public demo of Internet Explorer 7, and introduced their plans for embracing RSS within Longhorn, the next version of Windows. Adam Curry discussed podcasting, and how podcasters and bloggers want to “take back our media”.

While there was a lot to talk about on-stage, the most interesting aspect of the conference was the new paradigm for conferencing, public relations and publishing that was being demo’d at the conference.

Offsite Link: Gnomedex 5 demos future of conferences

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