The guardian today publishes an interview with Francesco D'Orazio, founder of Myrl, a start-up setting out to build bridges between virtual worlds. There seems to be a desire to enable people to link up their disparate networks and access them in one smorgasbord of social media sites. Personally, I don't see the point. I use my networks in different ways and for specific purposes. I'm quite happy - indeed, keen - to keep them separate. Update 19 Jan 2010: myrl.com does not respond
A classmate from business school, on the other hand, has come up with a different approach to linking people online. The Poken is a clever little device that enables you to share your details with other poken-ites by tapping poken to poken. The devices then instantly swap information. When you get home you just plug the USB device into your laptop and Fred is your Facebook Friend.
Meanwhile, I read earlier this week that Nuts TV is coming off Freeview and is going to be broadband only. The move, to me, marks a significant transition towards the broadcasting of television over the internet - whether or not you receive it on your TV or PC screen. Fundamentally, as well as making the content easy to access for its young, male audience, going online makes the advertising proposition much more attractive for advertisers.
Along with many others, ITV and WPP are saying 2009 is going to be a tough year for TV advertising. Until there is a complete shift in thinking about the broadcasting of TV, advertisers will continue to reduce their investments in the public service broadcasters in favour of more measurable media.
Yes, people were saying the same thing at the dawn of the Internet age, all of 10 or so years ago. It's only recently, however, that society has embraced the web as a central hub for entertainment. At the same time, the technology to stream video and the broadband capacity have improved to the point where it is now viable. The future of TV is over IP.