The Long Tail Skypecast…

Chris Anderson

Just attended my first Skypecast so that I could listen to Chris Anderson talk about his new book The Long Tail. I’m enamored with the concept, really enjoyed his narrative in the book (which took his original article and subsequent writings and put meat on the bones) and hoped he’d take it further versus just be high level.

I also wanted to hear a Skypecast which is an up-to-100 people audio conference anyone can join via the Skype Skypecast directory here. This Skypecasting concept — extended by the folks at HighSpeedConferencing to enable conferencing for up to 500 people *and* the ability to call in from landlines — has huge implications for enabling group communications globally (for free, by the way) that none of us truly grasp yet.

Unfortunately Anderson was in Los Angeles and the notorious traffic made him roughly 25 minutes late for the 50 of us waiting. That wasn’t too bad as I had plenty to do on the same computer I was attached to with my USB headset. There wasn’t music-on-hold and there was very annoying microphone sounds which were possibly caused by the meeting hosts (the folks at Six Apart, makers of Typepad, Movable Type, and Vox).

This listening experience has helped me to understand that “dead air” on a Skypecast — just like on radio — isn’t acceptable, even for a free Skypecast. We 50 were investing our time and Skypecast hosts must be extraordinarily aware of the value of participants time. That said, Ginger Tulley of Six Apart was a very good host and he, and Anderson, both apologized and Tulley smartly kept us informed constantly of Anderson’s progress while we waited.

Anderson basically pitched the audience on his concept and book vs. first finding out (which the hosts could’ve and should’ve done with the tons of extra time we had waiting for Anderson. Any of us could instant message via Skype and he could’ve asked all audience members a series of questions to which we could’ve easily responded). Wouldn’t it have been valuable if Anderson knew whether or not we all had read the book, knew the LT concept and thus he’d be free to take the listeners on a ride putting even more color around The Long Tail?

Still, Anderson is a guy I’d like to have dinner with and kick stuff around. He’s so in-the-game and is undoubtedly talking about big ideas with lots of smart people wherever he goes.

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1 Comment

  1. Jeff De Cagna on July 24, 2006 at 8:32 pm

    Steve:

    I appreciate the report on the Chris Anderson Skypecast. I had planned to participate, but didn’t make it. I have interviewed Chris for my blog and your readers can listen to the podcast at http://www.principledinnovation.com/blog/2006/07/02/pi-podcast-july-2-2006/

    I have done three Skypecasts so far and I have them scheduled monthly. The next one is on August 16 and will focus on what the association community can do to accelerate innovation. I hope you’ll consider joining us.



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