Telecom are spammers and deserve to have their right to operate and use
a cellular network revoked!
the contents of Aardvark's "million-dollar ideas" notebook
are revealed for all to see!
Harsh words -- but then again, that's my trademark isn't it?
But seriously, the telco's decision to send a blatantly commercial text message
to thousands of cellphone users over the weekend is something that shows
just how much contempt it has for its customers.
If Telecom wants to run an ad-funded cellular network then by all means it
should do so -- but when customers are paying a premium price for an "average"
service, it's unreasonable for the company to try and take two bites of the
apple by bulk-sending 3rd-party ads.
Of course, like all good spammers, Telecom says that those who don't want to
receive this unsolicited advertising can "opt out." Excuse me Telecom, but
if you're so damned sure that people won't mind getting your spam, why not
invite them to opt-in instead?
Text messaging over cellular phones is currently an enormous success and around
the world, billions of such messages are sent every month. Nothing will
kill this more quickly than the arrival of bulk-texting spammers. If Telecom
wants to cut off its nose to spite its face then so be it -- but don't say
you weren't warned.
NZ On Web?
I see that yet another local content site has
sucked the kumara -- or
has it? I recall that previous rumours of its death were greatly exaggerated,
is this just another publicity stunt?
Whether it has sucked itself or not doesn't really matter -- but what does
matter is the difficulty that local (and overseas) sites are having in earning
a penny or two.
Regular readers will note the "Save The Aardvark" campaign running on this site
and to date it has just about paid the annual coffee bill around here. I'm
certainly grateful to those who have donated and the objective of the idea was
not to allow an early retirement, but to get empirical evidence as to the
viability of a "donation-funded" publication.
Clearly ad-funded online publishing is a wash-out right now. Donation-funded
publishing is also not viable. And, unless you've got some really unique and
valuable content then charging a subscription is a sure-fire way to do little
more than kill your audience.
So, what about forming a "content consortium"?
If enough content providers (large and small) are prepared to band together
then it's possible that the synergy of all that content might just be enough
to warrant people paying a small regular subscription.
Yes, I've floated the idea before -- but now, maybe it's time to do something
about it in order to protect our local online content scene before the .nz
webspace becomes little more than a collection of brochure-ware sites and
a dozen or so poorly-performing subscription-based operations.
If the content offered by the consortium was good enough, smart ISPs could
consider bundling a small (say $20 a year) access fee into their offering,
thus giving them an edge over their competition and providing extra value
to their customers.
The total subs would he apportioned on a monthly basis amongst the sites in
the consortium on the basis of unique visitor counts accumulated on a daily
basis. If just one of the big-three ISPs opted for this, the subscription
pool would be a significant amount of money -- and the revenues delivered to
even a relatively small site would likely be far greater than that possible
It's feedback time. What do YOU think of this idea?
Would it be worth $2 a month to foster and support the creation of good local
content on the local webspace and to preserve the existence of the few good
sites we already have?
Would you choose an ISP that supported such a scheme even if they charged a dollar
or two more a month?
Have your say
Save The Aardvark Fund
Yes, I have had several donations to the Aardvark fund and I thank those
who put their money where their mouse is :-)
If guilt is gnawing away inside you then there's still time to donate.
Just drop by and
hand over your loot.
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