Monday, August 18, 2008

Worst/Best Community Participation Idea Ever? - August 28, 2008

I was cruising Boing Boing the other day, and I noticed this terrible banner ad. Just look:

Then I noticed another terrible ad:WOW! The copy on both of those ads sounds like there were 50 year-olds trying to write like teenagers. Seriously, "We're well known bloggers churning out updates"??!!!??! That is just horrible, and makes people who actually contribute content to the web sound like losers. Have you ever been like, "Hey, my name is Reid, and I'm a well known blogger?" Never!!!

The second ad with the video in it is even worse. There is a huge disconnect between what the copy says and what the video played. The copy says, "Submit your hardest rocking win free passes," and the video that was played is of three people gently swaying to some trite indie rock. That to me is not hard rocking.

Long story short, I'm like what is this CrowdFire? I do some quick searching and find out that CrowdFire is a platform that is promoting itself as the place where people can share music experiences with another in the form of video, pictures, and text. These ads were to encourage people to use CrowdFire at the OutsideLands festival.

The actual screenshot of the CrowdFire page.
Overall, I think CrowdFire is an interesting concept, however, I have some serious concerns about its success. First off, their communication with content creators needs to be drastically improved. Their messaging is totally off. Secondly, people are already utilizing several other major outlets to share their everyday experiences with friends (i.e. Flickr, Facebook, blogs , etc). They already have tools that connect their phones with these outlets as well, so why would they begin to use CrowdFire. Thirdly, CrowdFire is presented by Windows, and everyone knows Microsoft isn't cool. Finally, it's yet another thing I have to join, furthering my social networking fatigue syndrome.

I can appreciate CrowdFire's attempt to secure a niche market, but I'm uncertain as to whether they can convince people to begin using it. Not only is it a emotional and behavioral change for a consumer to make, but there aren't any clear benefits as to why they should use CrowdFire over any other service (minus the free tickets).

It should be interesting to see if people actually use CrowdFire during the Outside Lands Festival.

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