Trends of the future in Digital Media

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This article is derived from research by the Dutch governement that was lead by: 

Immovator: Freek van ‘t Ooster / Mir Wemuth
TNO: Nathalie van Schie / Erik Huizer 

To my tech-savvy audience, most things might be somewhat predictable, but maybe to others they are eye-openers… 

The article has been written by ‘my’ 1st time blogger Dionne van der Woord a.k.a. Miss Captain Morgan 😉 


We’ve started another year and -like it or not- we’re another year older as well. Lucky for us, wisdom comes with years and so does digital media knowledge. So it’s time to evaluate last year’s trends and view the upcoming ones to prepare ourselves for a successful 2012. Make sure you’re in a comfortable chair cause it’ll be an overload of information.

Users
Let’s start off with some user related information. Digitalization has a huge impact on our private- and work environment; it gives us more and more functions like connecting with friends on social media. Last year, there was a massive uptake of smart phones and tablets. Besides games, especially social media became immensely popular. The increasing usage of social media gives people a voice, which creates leaders and can make consumers so-called ‘prosumers’ (co-producing consumers).
The counter side of increased digital ‘social’ media usage is the fact that people become more individualistic. We are merely broadcasting ‘how wonderful our lives are’ than having a ‘dialogue’. Bart calls this ‘multi-monologues in his book. An example of the increased individuality is being on a family birthday where everyone sits on the couch and is using Whatsapp, Facebook or any other app on his or her mobile phone instead of talking with the people in the same room…  


Technology
Media digitalize extremely and new words such as ‘appification’ are introduced. A lot of communication is audio visualized nowadays and tablets, smartphones, second screens and other devices start to integrate with existing media and other areas. Think of education, public relations, advertising, mass communication and personal communication.
Another remarkable trend is the fact that cloud computing is changing media distribution and consumption. E.g. people have become more open towards streaming videos on demand instead of watching their favorite programs/films on TV/(owned) DVD on specific times.
Relatively new is the usage of sensor technology, but it already has an impact on everyday life and behavior. Sensors can be found everywhere. Think of the game industry (the Wii), the remote control of your TV, a thermometer, an automatic supermarket door, and so on. The search for better quality and improved user experience will continue (think of 3D etc). Therefore, researchers predict new information filters and advanced search & open source techniques. 



Business
As said before, media merge is eminent and they’re used in a mixed setting. Audiovisual and written media meet on each other’s domains to target the same devices for their services. This makes it necessary to develop new business models for the digital world and face the difference in thinking towards classic models such as authenticity, copyrights and originality.
Accountability has – and will get – a more important function. Companies now follow a human centered approach to service development. This can be seen in co-creation, mobilizing crowds, crowd sourcing, and direct influence of individuals on design of products, environment and services mostly through social media like blogs, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.
Last, but not least, there’s a fundamental change in the role of producer and consumer of information; the former passive consumer is now an active producer. The result is that professionals are now looking for a new useful role in the information and influence chain (sales funnel). 

Data
The massive usage of data (storage) causes a desperate need for metadata and smart search & retrieval. The trend is to share information with our circle of friends, so existing data (text, pictures, video’s) multiplies a few times due to sharing with connections. We saw this a few years ago for the first time on the Wikileaks case, and researchers are still busy developing the possibilities.
Unlucky for a lot of new media applications, there’s the question of digital preservation. Are those applications here to stay, and are they built for long-term usage? E.g. Facebook is replacing My Space, and Google+ could become a huge competitor of Facebook (although I doubt that for now). But what do you think will be the next big digital hype…?

Let us know! 

Steve Jobs on Failure

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My dad used to say: you already have ‘no’ and you might get a ‘yes’ if you just ask… This is so true. The funny thing about our behavior in games is that in games we are actually open to fail where as in real-life we are afraid to make mistakes and fail, because of fear of being laughed at, yelled at or even getting fired. I see this a lot in change-management projects where we use games as a tool to train staff and get them used to the ‘desired situation’. When we ask people on their jobs to do things differently, in 90% of all cases you will have people saying: “But I am used to doing it like this, or we tried it but it didn’t work or I use the new method, but the old one really worked better.” We always use the same ways to get to our goal where as in games people find out the best way to achieve their goal through trial and error. And also, once we ‘master’ the game we invent ‘challenges’ for ourselves to push the boundary, like fighting with one arm, or running through a level without killing anyone or… well…

I hope to find the time this year to write my new book ‘A Playful Life’ (working title) which will be about life topics and how games can help to look at things in new ways…
Have a playful weekend!

The Future of Gaming according to ING Bank

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I can see my parents doing this in 10 years time… long live bingo, social media and games!

IBM Next 5 in 5: 2011 The Future

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5 minutes of free inspiration to develop a sound vision!

Trash-Can Run by BrandNewGame.mov

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This video presentation explains the Trash-can run. A concept I developed to reduce litter in forests and parks. Check it out and let me know what you think!

I am still looking for (Dutch) sponsors and interesting contacts in the fast moving and sports industry for the launch in april 2012!

Presenting some cool applied game cases

>Check out this presentation bij PSFK – some really nice and creative cases even some that help to make the world a little better like my trash can run for which I am still looking for sponsors!

PSFK Future of Gaming Report [Preview]

View more presentations from PSFK

Serious Games on BBCTV

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It’s a documentary from 2010 I think.

Zynga stocks available!

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Zynga stocks are available since last Friday. The starting bid was $10 releasing 100.000.000 stocks (!) – so Zynga was aiming for a minimum of 1 billion dollars in public capital! 

The company was founded in July 2007 (less than five years ago!) by Mark Pincus and is named for his late American Bulldog, Zinga. Loyal and spirited, Zinga’s name is a nod to a legendary African warrior queen. 

Zynga’s mission is to connect the world through games. Everyday millions of people interact with their friends and express their unique personalities through our games, which range from harvesting crops to building your business franchise, to playing poker. 
Through the company’s philanthropic arm, Zynga.org is committed to transforming the world through virtual social goods. Zynga players have raised more than $10 million for world social causes since Zynga.org launched in October 2009. 

Games that Zynga developed over the past four years are (amongst others): 
CityVille – Build the city of your dreams. 
FarmVille – Grow fruits and veggies and raise animals on your very own farm. 
Words With Friends – Test your lexicon against friends in the #1 mobile word game. 
Empires & Allies – Build your city, grow your nation and conquer the world. 
Mafia Wars – Start a crime family. Run your mob businesses. Then take over the world. 
Indiana Jones Adventure World – Grab life by the boulders. 
Café World – Slice, mix, and grill your way to building the hottest restaurant on the block. 
Mafia Wars 2 – Welcome to the dark side of social games. 
CastleVille – Create your happy ending. 
CityVille Hometown – Create the town of your dreams. 

Top Zynga Games (MAU): (According to AppData.com) 
CityVille 48 m 
CastleVille 35 m 
Zynga Poker 28 m 
FarmVille 31 m (this used to be 61 million in 2009 & 2010) 
Empires & Allies 16 m 
Words With Friends 13 m 
Adventure World 9 m 

Their User Numbers: (According to our latest S-1/A) 
 227 million monthly active users 
 2 billion minutes a day of play 
 4 billion neighbor connections 
 54 million daily active users 
 450 million social actions a day 

Some noble things that Zynga.org did in 2009 through 2011: 
Zynga is committed to transforming the world through virtual social goods. Zynga players have raised more than $10 million for several international nonprofits since Zynga.org launched in October 2009. Players have purchased virtual social goods within games like FarmVille, Mafia Wars and Zynga Poker that have benefitted earthquake victims in Haiti and to school lunch programs for children in Haiti. In 2010 Zynga players also helped to build the L’Ecole de Choix School in Haiti. Recently, Zynga players banded together to support victims of the deadly earthquake in Japan, and raised more than $3 million for Save the Children’s Japan Earthquake Tsunami Children in Emergency Fund and Direct Relief International. had the opportunity to donate through more than 10 Zynga games, including FrontierVille, Café World, Mafia Wars and CityVille. In addition, following the devastating tornadoes in the Southern United States, players in CityVille, Mafia Wars, YoVille, Treasure Isle and Vampire Wars rallied together to raise more than $250,000 for Save the Children and Direct Relief International’s efforts. 

Below some more fun facts about Zynga in an infographic 



Gaming and the Millenials – a summary

> I was reading this article about millenials based on research done by MTV Networks. A lot of their conclusions are stated in my book ‘A Brand New Playground (www.brandnewplayground.com) and I summarized the essence of their study below: 


 Half of Millennials said “People my age see real life as a video game” and almost 6 out of 10 said “#winning is the slogan of my generation” (certainly #epic_fail seems to have become their anti-slogan!) 


Principle #1: Play fair or you are “fair game” (What I call ‘Be Righteous’ in my book): these days you can’t bullshit your customers anymore. Be real and be fair and don’t try to cheat you customer into bad (poor quality) – overpriced – products. 


Principle #2: Leverage the leaderboard  
People are always interested in ‘how they’re doing’ compared to others. A leaderboard shows your position compared to other players and MTV links this to ‘wanting to know’ what price we pay for products and whether that price is fair. The internet is of course an easy way to compare prices. 


Principle #3: Smart-cuts, not short-cuts 
Gaming evokes intrinsic motivation to reach objectives. It’s very interesting that in games we tend to search for ‘work arounds’ to achieve the same goal in many different ways where as in real-life most employees are used to do the same routine every day and actually are afraid to change their behavior because it might have a different result (or at least it creates uncertainty). 


Principle #4: Deliver dopamine/adrenaline fixes


Half of respondents in the MTV study — perhaps those more prone to Millennial micro-boredom — believe that “life can be less stimulating than gaming.” The complementary game dynamic we found fascinating was “positive randomness” — if a game is too predictable, it is boring, but if there are too many random surprises, it is too complex. 


This can be explained by looking at the ‘flow’-model where we continuously balance between frustration and boredom using the skills available to us to fight challenges we face… this is the same in real-life, which I will explain in my next book ‘The Game of Life’. 

Principle #5: Hand over that joystick. 


Millennials are accustomed to having a voice, and having it heeded. And they’re frustrated when big corporations don’t give them a voice or a true “role” as a consumer in the game. In a game the player is always ‘in control’ (at least so it seems….). Instead of just sending advertising into the world brands should start a dialogue and start listening to their consumers and accept that THEY (consumers) are in control of our brands, not the marketing department…. 


 Read the full article here.

‘Laat met je merk spelen’ bijna uitverkocht!

>Just to be disruptive a Dutch subject title today. It says: ‘A Brand New Playground’ almost sold out!

Of course I am referring to the Dutch version of my book. The first edition almost sold 1.500 copies so far in 15 months time. According to my publisher Kluwer this is good result for a book in such a niche-market that was written for Marketing Managers of which there are maybe 10.000 in The Netherlands. So I already sold my book to 10% of the market potential, which is excellent penetration! There are about 300 copies left, so if you want to get a hold of your copy of the ‘eerste druk‘ (first release), order it here: www.bol.com or here www.managementboek.nl It – generally – is rated with 4 out of 5 stars – so don’t take my word for it. If you send me a picture of yourself reading the book I will even hand sign it for you (Dutch residents only ;-)!

This is a Dutch review of the book in 2010 by Management Boek.nl
This is a Dutch review of the book in 2010 by Max Kohnstam:

The English version is still available for free through www.brandnewplayground.com