Something to tell or sell

If your family has a third generation business in a world ruled by chains, how do you compete? Owen Mack of Boston started a video-blogging business to brand and promote products, and now it is becoming a side business with the potential to create a small advertising agency.

I met Mack, 34, at the New Communications Forum conference in Palo Alto Wednesday. His vblogging site is coBRANDIT and he’s received a bit of attention from Inc. Magazine and taken his concept to forums like BlogOn 2005.

I wasn’t free to attend the entire conference but what I experienced gave me ancouragement and ideas. A podcast and vblogging panel featured Eric Rice of Among his memorable lines: “Everybody has something to tell and everybody has something to sell.” That’s a good mantra for personal publishing.

Los Angeles videoblogger and documentary filmmaker Zadi Diaz talked about the importance of mashups, her affiliation with Rocketboom and mentioned that Tivo was accepting vblog content. (Speaking of mashups J.D. Lasica of Ourmedia showed a humorous bit, produced by one of Ourmedia’s 83,000 contributors, who spliced televised segments of Vice President Cheney and President Bush in a way that made them seem to debate each other.)

I also met Evelyn Rodriguez, a Silicon Valley woman who hopes to create a community-authored media site called Dwelve. In a previous posting I mentioned meeting a fellow from Tulsa who started Buzz-o-phone service that turns phone calls into podcasts.

And I barely sampled the ideas and the people. It’s humbling and uplifting at the same time to sense the many threads and currents in this communications upheaval that we’re living through.

Tom Abate
‘Cause if you ain’t Mass Media, you’re Mini Media