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Tuesday, December 13, 2005

Hackoff.com - Hybrid Blog and Book

New methods for promoting content are appearing all the time and one that is gaining steam is Tom Evslin's book and blog hybrid, called a "blook". The title is "Hackoff.com" and it's a story about technology company set in the nadir of the tech bubble (1999 - 2000ish). It's an interesting read so far, although Tom does tend to push the pornographic aspects a little too much for my taste. Also, his descriptions of bankers are a little trite.
However, the story shines in his conveyance of executive meetings during the collapse of the company. The conversations flow naturally and convincingly and have the imprint of someone who has actually been in the room. I don't know much about Tom's background, but I've read that he was an exec at a start-up during this time period. The vignettes that involve the corporate counsel ring exceedingly true and make me believe that Tom was involved in some of these dicey situations. Additionally, his passages regarding how the investment banks made money "coming and going" off of clients illustrates a sophistication that I haven't seen even in good financial journalism. His portrayal is so accurate that I think the book may only play well to former dot-commers and tech bankers. Regardless, Hackoff.com should be required reading for all financial journalism training programs.
The interesting thing I'm drawing out of this is that it's a great example of how a traditional media channel is being altered by Internet technologies. Tom is a great test case for how to use the new Internet media to promote a book. This is a drastic departure from established book promotion techniques (as far as I'm aware). Now, will Tom's blook end-up as the model of the future? Maybe not. But this type of experimentation (and leadership) will find lucrative new models. I'm sure the big publishers are watching this closely. Wait - scratch that. They *should* be watching this closely if they were smart. But we all know about that whole "Innovator's Dilemma" issue with large, established companies when it comes to disruptive innovations - right?

1 Comments:

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