The day after Avatar Day

Yesterday, was ‘Avatar Day‘.

We’re going to do something unprecedented.

It’s a social marketing experiment.

We’re going to take over as many IMAX 3D theaters and other select 3D theaters worldwide on August 21 and we’re going to let an international global audience come see 15 minutes of Avatar for free.

It’s going to be Avatar day.

I touched upon this in an earlier post, but if you’re unfamiliar with the notion of Avatar Day, then you’re probably not too up on your Avatar knowledge either. Allow me to summarise the latter so we can get on with talking about the former.

Avatar is the new film from James Cameron, 14-odd years in the making, this $237 million epic is apparently set to change the movie making landscape forever. Not thanks to amazing story telling (although we’re hoping for something pretty good at least), or even due to the ever present trademark blue tint he likes to add to his work.

No, this film has been 12 years in the making because Cameron has been waiting and waiting for the technology to be ready to fully realise a vision he had all those years ago.

The plot itself snagged my interest some time ago (two years ago maybe?); set in the 22nd Century, the majority of the story takes place on a distant planet called Pandora, inhabited by a humanoid race with its own language and culture. Humans cannot breathe the air on Pandora so have created avatars, hybrid creatures controlled via a mental link by a human operator. Add to that that it’s an original story and one being brought to the screen by a certain Mr James Cameron, and I was hooked.

Yes, I like films. Yes, I like science-fiction films. But this film is being billed as something as revolutionary as when Hollywood first introduced sound and colour. Why? Well that’s down to the much-heralded Digital 3D.

I’ve seen 3D films before, or films with at least ‘some scenes in 3D’ – the last one being Superman Returns back at the IMAX actually. Anyway, my point is, these films/scenes that have come before – they seemed to be in 3D just for the sake of it.

“Oh this bit? We’re shooting this in 3D! So, so, so therefore we’ll throw some things out at the audience!”

But with Avatar, not so.

The 3D element here is almost organic. It’s just there, if that makes sense? You don’t watch this film (or at least the 15min trailer that I saw yesterday), you experience it.

And it… was… beautiful.
Stunning even.

Completely immersive and – at one point in particular – simply breath-taking.

There’s another post in me about the whole ‘experiment in social marketing’ thing, but I’ll save that for another day. For now at least…

Roll on December 18th 🙂

Balls to it! (a Whatley rant-a-thon) Part 4: The thing about Facebook

It’s a Social TOOL – not a SOCIAL NETWORK!

As I’ve previously stated, I’m a huge fan of Jyri Engelstrom, creator of not only Jaiku but also the dude to first come up with the theory of Social Objects. I could explain what they are – but Hugh MacLeod, he of Gaping Void fame (read his website – it will change your life) has already nailed it to the wall better than I ever could. So go.
Read. Read some more. And get yourself an education.

EDIT – someone else who gets it: Russell Beattie

So yeah – facebook is a social TOOL. People throw objectives like: “We need to make money out of these social networks…”

To the point actually where recently I was unfortunate enough to be invited along to the Telecommunications Executive Network evening (a ‘TEN’ event) which was subtitled:

“Social Networking: What’s Telcoms got to do with it?”

And it was all tally ho and where’s the money and ad-sales this and monetization that… but everyone just seemed to miss the effing point.

To the point where I raised it as a question:

“Good evening. James Whatley, SpinVox… There’s a school of thought that the money is not in fact in Social Networks but in fact Social Objects. Here we are in this room and I know maybeeee… one or two people here. They aren’t in my social network and I doubt very much that I am in theirs. But here we all are gathered here tonight around
this Social Object. The network builds itself around it. The money, therefore… is in the object. Not the network. If you build it they will come. Your comments please?”

Well – that went down a treat!
(especially as the last question of the evening!)

The following exchange:

The guy from Ogilvy: “Is that yours? I’m stealing it…”
Me: “Er no. Actually it’s Jyri Engelstrom’s. Co-founder of Jaiku…”
Ogilvy: “Ah.. see! Another Aggregation site!”


That. Says. It. All.


Ahem – anywhoo – that was a lovely evening.. 🙂

I was clearly the youngest person in the room and yet I felt completely out of my depth.
And in this instance being OUT of my depth meant swimming around in the shallows…

But hey – let’s not bitch moan – it was a very good evening… and I was known at the canapés afterwards as ‘The Social Object Guy’ which was quite amusing…

But yeah – Social Objects. They are what form the foundations of Social Networks. Plant the seed of a network with a Social Gesture from your Social Object.

Again – as Hugh Macloed rightly points out – it ain’t Rocket Science.
I seem to have gone off on a tangent… Where were we? Oh yeah – things that are annoying me online…
Err… I’ve had my Mobile Web Rant elsewhere… and I’ve raged about facebook to the nth degree…
What else…


No. I think that’s it.

I’m done.
For now anyway…