My Experience At The Xbox Kinect E3 Event With Cirque du Soleil

Project Natal for Xbox 360 is now Kinect for Xbox 360!Earlier in the week I had the opportunity to see the fruit of many, many weeks of labor.  Microsoft teamed with Cirque du Soleil to present the Project Natal event at the Galen Center in Los Angeles, which kicked off the week for E3, the biggest gaming convention in the world.

First, a brief explanation of my role in all of this.  Our company, M80, is the social media agency of record for Xbox, and as such we get to do some wicked-cool things with them, but this was one of the best.  For several weeks we’ve worked with teams inside and outside of Xbox to come up with hashtag programs,contact and invite people to the event and just to create general “buzz” strategies around all of this.  We use social media to amplify messages, and this event was no exception.  Without going into granular detail, I will just say that the teams at M80 and the other groups we worked with spent countless man (and woman!) hours working  to create excitement and conversation around something that most people had no detailed information about…they just knew it would be grandiose and awesome.

The event was put on two nights, Sunday the 13th and Monday the 14th, each identical to the other, and each designed to reveal the new name and features of the long-speculated and anticipated “Project Natal”.  So, at 9pm on Sunday the 14th the name was officially released to the world: the new controller-free gaming and entertainment system for Xbox will be called “Kinect“.

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My New Role In Social Media Marketing and Strategy

logo-v1Those of you that have been following my adventures for a while know that I put my heart, soul and mind into social media.  Since writing my own blogging platform a decade ago (the billion dollar idea that I never capitalized on…) to my almost-obsessive fascination with brand interaction on channels like Twitter, YouTube and Facebook, I am constantly observing and strategizing ways to make the interaction and engagement between companies and customers better through social media. I have spent quite a bit of time over the last couple of years consulting businesses of all types and sizes regarding their engagement (or lack thereof) within these online communities.  From Fortune 100 companies that distribute hardware all around the world to non-profit agencies that are doing their best to make a difference in the world, I have worked with groups to lend insight, support, ideas and action to social media programs. Given all of that, I’m quite pleased to announce that I have taken a new role within the industry.

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Dude, Where’s My Twitter?

The micro-blogging platform Twitter has blown up in the last few months, with over 5 million new users signing up in March alone, the mega-popularity of the service is now without question.  Although it certainly lags behind most social networks (like Facebook with over 200 million users) in total number of registered participants, it is getting more press time and attention that most of the other networks combined.  Arguably Twitter is the flavor of the month, but how long will its popularity last?  More importantly, what does the future user of Twitter look like?  Geeks and Nerds everywhere are starting to complain about the influx of celebrities to Twitter, and are now throwing temper tantrums, gathering up their toys and storming off because they don’t want to share the space with the ultra-popular.

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Apple just rolled out some security upgrades for the ultra-coveted
iPhone.  Things aren’t going very well for users of this new patch.

The savants that unlocked the phone to use on networks outside of AT&T now have $600 bricks.  It seems that the new upgrades "likely result in the modified iPhone becoming permanently inoperable."

Robert Scoble is reporting that even peoplo without unlocked phones are having problems.

In other news, Halo 3 walked all over entertainment industry records for opening day sales.  Seems the video games have a little more pull than movies.

For those keeping score at home, here is today’s tally: Microsoft 1, Apple 0.