Doing Something Meaningful Edition

Doing something meaningful takes guts and it takes time. For this edition of Sunday links, we take a look at the stories that highlight a new development from a multi-year direction.

Making Sense: The Tools of Personal Expression

  • Why the Web Still Matters for Writing. Ben ThompsonThere is no question that apps are here to stay, and are a superior interaction model for some uses. But the web is like water: it fills in all the gaps between things like gaming and social with exactly what any one particular user wants.
  • Cars as crucibles for personal autonomy. Doc SearlsThere is nothing wrong with having help in this from the Apples, Googles and Teslas of the world, provided our sense of where we end and where those companies begin is maintained, along with our full sense of autonomy and independence as individual human beings who can be social in our own ways, and not just in the controlling ways provided by commercial entities.

Making Do: Featuring Paid Authentically

  • Disqus Launches Sponsored Comments. AdWeek: Disqus’ push into native advertising began a few months ago with the launch of Featured Comments, which allow publishers and marketers to curate discussion threads and push interesting comments to the top or steer the conversation in a particular direction.
  • Reddit Execs Ellen Pao and Jena Donlin Get Serious About the Site’s Business (Q&A). Re/Code: Donlin and Pao work on partnerships with outside brands and potential advertisers, while playing around with how to grow some of the site’s more nascent revenue streams. That’s not an easy feat. The Reddit community has long been critical of traditional Web advertising, and the company’s long, complicated history with part owner Conde Nast has only served to make monetization efforts that much more difficult.

Making It: The Leap into Transactional

  • Yelp Could Solve Many Problems By Emphasizing Transactions. Greg Sterling: the solution to these and other problems for Yelp is to migrate more of its revenue to a transactional model. It doesn’t currently charge businesses for appointments or reservations but it could take a fee for each booking it delivers (or a flat fee per month for the general capability).
    Yelp could expand booking and scheduling across an array of services categories.


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Valeria is an experienced listener. She designs service and product experiences to help businesses rediscover the value of promises and its effects on relationships and culture. She is also frequent speaker at conferences and companies on a variety of topics. Book her to speak here.