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    Why Pirate Bay will continue to sway

    The Svea Court of Appeal will give their verdict in the Pirate Bay trial tomorrow. As the Swedish newspaper Dagens Nyheter today asks, is the verdict of any actual interest? Will a conviction actually affect the music and movie industries, or the ones downloading illegally? After tomorrow, the guys behind Pirate Bay may not continue to sway, but their site and file-sharing most likely will.

    In April 2009, Fredrik Neij, Peter Sunde, Gottfrid Svartholm and Carl Lundström, the guys behind Pirate Bay, were found guilty of assistance to copyright infringement and were sentenced to one year in prison and a fine of 30 million SEK (approximately 4.3 million USD). They appealed, and tomorrow, 26 November 2010, the Svea Court of Appeal will announce its verdict.


    The guys behind Pirate Bay have more than 30 million reasons to pray for a verdict of acquittal. A conviction tomorrow would definitely affect them. But for the site itself and the 20 million people downloading movies and music using Pirate Bay, a conviction won’t have any specific impact. Neither will the movie or music industries gain much from such a verdict. The reason? The Pirate Bay trial deals with the specific technology used at the time of the indictment. Today file-sharers play around with new technology developed to make it really difficult to track down any person who is file sharing.


    What is there for the movie and music industries to learn? Well, it has been said plenty of times before, by plenty of others, and representatives from the movie and music industries are probably bored to death from hearing it. Yet, it can’t be said enough. They have to evolve, because there’s nothing to gain from fighting strong development. This actually goes for any industry that wants to survive.


    So Kodak

    It’s been a long way down for Kodak. Unlike the record industry the photographic film companies barely received fair warning before their businesses crumbled to dust.

    After a decade in the desert there might be some light at the end of the tunnel though. With appointment of CMO Jeffrey Hazlitt, Kodak set out on a furious restructuring of their marketing department and strategy. The outcome: So Kodak.

    Now the campaign might look relatively basic, but the devil is in the details. One could suspect that the ambassadors (Rihanna, Trey Songz, Drake and Pitbull) have been chosen not only for their accomplishments in the studio and on stage, but also for their social media savviness. Added to this is a very successful blog campaign with key influencers such as Nahright.com, Onsmash.com and Concreteloop.com.

    What demographic they’re going for? The one that have adapted to and developed social media further than any other, but that’s an entirely different article.

    Take a look at, and read E-consultancy’s interview with Jeffrey Hazlitt.


    Heartbeats In Conversation With Gerd Leonhard

    Sounds Like Branding presents Heartbeats In Conversation With, a series of short conversations on relevant topics for marketing and communication. First out is a conversation between Heartbeats’ CEO Jakob Lusensky and Gerd Leonhard, media futurist and CEO of The Futures Agency. Watch them talk about the media of the future and what we can learn from the days of Gutenberg.

    The conversation took place at Lydmar Hotel in Stockholm.


    The art of marketing

    Audi raises curiosity through art. More than a 1000 square meter huge billboard, close to 200 spray cans, 14 days of work and 4 artists. Watch Audi’s vision come alive in Berlin. An inspiring marketing method that raises curiosity and brand awareness.


    The talent show and your brand

    Pre American Idol, the idea that anything but professionals could deliver content to the most important slot in the broadcast schedule seemed preposterous. Talent shows were something that the local promoter or indie label used to sell beer or t-shirts, and if they were televised at all the aura was more public service than Fox. So, what happened?

    How come when you’re flicking through your channels today, at any given time, you’re likely to stumble upon America’s Next Top Model, America’s Best Dance Crew, Project Runway, American Idol (still), or any of the other talent-fueled formats that saturate the networks today.

    Leading up to the bursting of the IT bubble, interactivity made its first appearance as “the future”. Even though this future was mainly envisioned online, other media felt the need to keep up.

    One of the first interactive formats that delivered more than the butt of a joke was Big Brother that premiered 1999 in Holland. Viewers were suddenly able to affect the programming by sending a contestant home each week with their votes. Today, interactivity has become an integral part of the broadcast business, and included in programs ranging from music to cooking.

    In Sweden the two biggest TV formats today are Idol (the Swedish version of American Idol) and Eurovision Song Contest. In addition to boasting 2-3 million viewers on a good night (in a country with 9 million citizens) every episode generate millions in SMS fees and lord knows how much in advertising and sponsorships.

    One of the hardest things to do is to build an artificial character that evokes real emotions. And even if you’ve done that successfully, there’s still the script writing, casting, arguing with directors and whatnot. What  if you could get all of the ingredients for good TV drama by just filming a bunch of teenagers trying to prove themselves as the best dancers in the country? Or by just sheer volume of characters be able to almost expect a magical moment like Paul Potts to occur on your show sooner or later?

    Authentic people bring a set of beauties and flaws rare in broadcast before, and the relatability of the characters evoke emotions among the viewers in a way most drama can’t.

    Beyond the sponsor sign

    Apart from being truly great TV the American Idol auditions also serve as event activation. The auditions reach tens of thousands of people, giving American Idol and any brand associated with them the opportunity to interact with their audience for an entire day. America’s Best Dance Crew has a less extended audition process, but let the finalists perform in malls and event centers across the country in between the weekly finals instead. Both scenarios give any sponsor a pull effect to the events that few could count on otherwise.

    With further specializing and more channels than ever in broadcast along with skyrocketing license fees for high quality content, there’s a great opportunity for brands to get access to audiences in ways that traditional advertising just can’t.


    Brand integration is becoming a standard operating procedure both for networks to fund their programming, as well as for top tier advertisers in order to leverage the effect of their regular TV spots. Some brands take it further though. Airing right now on BET is a Smirnoff branded DJ talent hunt where the “Master of the mix” is to be nominated. Smirnoff’s graphical elements are worked in into the graphic profile of the show and Smirnoff’s presence is crystal clear throughout the show. In addition to that, it’s a really good show if you’re interested in music, which means you will effectively be spending hours with the Smirnoff brand this fall.