Thursday, November 24, 2011

We need a more “co-creative” society, fast.

Robert Saffian penned an interesting editorial in Fast Company for their special feature on “How to live a creative life”. He noted that there are two parallel economies at work in the US at present: the traditional economy with big players, often from an industrial era who benefit from a status quo and an “innovative economy” who thrives on change and disruption. The latter lives within a new virtual triangle that connects Madison Avenue, Silicon Valley and Hollywood. These creative centres traditionally did not engage each other much. They have since taken bold steps to work together to create a new “co-creative” economy.

At eYeka we have always rebelliously connected dots where most preffered to erect walls. We see creativity as a tool that can affect changes not only in products, marketing or entertainment but could transform society for the better. As we have mentioned before on this blog, we believe that creativity can come from the most unlikely places. By breaking the dogma of closed-loop thinking and inviting people who are not the kind brands traditionally engage, we too forge connections that result in fast, fresh thinking.

Many researchers have already demonstrated how people who seem too remote from the context of a problem to be bothered, can actually bring the most creative solutions to the table. Yet as society is battling with an ever inflating (and frightening) array of challenges, from building a sustainable economy that doesn’t solely rely on debt to fighting climate change to accomodating a growing population, it seems like we are running-out of fresh ideas. Could it be because it is always the same type of people who are involved in problem solving?

Governments and NGOs have a unique opportunity to sollicit participation from “non-traditionally involved people” regardless of who they are and where they are, to solve very specific problems. Imagine the European Union inviting contributions from outside Europe to sort out its ageing population issue? Imagine Mexico City inviting people from all other the World to suggest how it could create green community spaces for its residents? By taking two bold steps: co-creating solutions with people and broadening engagement to all who are keen to contribute, it is fair to imagine that governments and NGOs could offer fresher solutions for the benefits of all. Looking at the ever-rising mountain of challenges that our society is facing, we hope they will be bold as we need a more co-creative society, fast.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Can you innovate your way out of a recession?

Upon hearing news of an impending recession, most companies opt for the traditional corporate practice of shrinking budgets, cost cutting, sweeping layoffs and freezing plans. As corporate turnarounds experts will tell you, it is important to stop the blood flow first when attending to an injured patient. But if the injured is a competitive athlete, how long will you prevent him from training before his skills and stamina take a turn for the worst too?

Innovation is like a muscle, if you do not exercise it, it atrophies. Once the necessary housekeeping to ensure relative corporate stability is over, an economic recession could become a great opportunity for innovation.

“Many of the world’s enduring, multibillion-dollar corporations, from Disney to Microsoft, were founded during economic downturns. Generally speaking, operating costs tend to be cheaper in a recession. Talent is easier to find because of widespread layoffs. And competition is usually less fierce because, frankly, many players are taken out of the game.” – Reena Jana, Bloomberg BusinessWeek, July 2009

A study by McKinsey & Co. conducted over a period of 18 years found out that companies that “retained or gained market leadership during the recession of 1990-1998 invested on strategic acquisitions and pursued new opportunities rather than focusing on reducing operating expense”.

Full text on the eYeka blog.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Jaron Lanier on Edge

Edge has a (too) rare interview with Jaron Lanier, one of the leading thinkers of the "digital revolution". Thanks to El Blogador for pointing it on my FB wall.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Innovation, co-creation on the eYeka blog

As you may have noticed, I am not blogging much here these days. The good/bad news is that I am starting blogging again at

Hope to see you there.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Chinese baby milk powder scandal manufactured by competitor

As it turns out, the Chinese baby milk powder scandal (where infants grow breasts due to the chemical additives) was manufactured by a competitor's PR agency, using online forums and micro-blogging services to spread false rumors. Full story in Campaign China.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

OFT to investigate hotels online booking industry

"Allegations of collusion between hotels and online booking operators to keep room rates artificially high are to be formally investigated by the Office of Fair Trading." Consumer wins. FT

Friday, September 10, 2010

Facebook overtakes Google on time spent

Internet users now spending more time on Facebook than Google (including Gmail, Youtube...). CNET.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Paul's extreme sound stretch

Create your own ambient epic soundtrack with Paul's extreme sound stretch. It makes pre-teen idol Justin Bieber sound like Vangelis. Read on Lifehacker. Mac version here.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Strategic Online PR and Media Relations Forum Asia

I am speaking at the Strategic Online PR and Media Relations Forum Asia (23 – 25 August 2010) in Singapore on how brands must move from advertising to advocacy to succeed with social media.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Can Facebook fail?

It seems that Facebook fatigue combined with the sudden re-discovery of basic concepts such as "privacy" are weighting down on Facebook's exponential growth. While I am not cheering for the demise of the platform that allows me to stay connected with otherwise too loose connections to bother sustaining, I am of course concerned about who gets hold of my status updates. And it seems that I am not alone. The BBC is running a good article summing-up why Facebook should worry and highlights a number of promising alternatives such as Diaspora.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Social networks urged to 'raise ad rates or die'

"Datamonitor's Business Insights study predicts that charges for advertising on social networks will have risen steeply by 2015 (...) the report predicts social networks will only make £4.14 per user per year (US$6.03)". Looking at the backlash against Facebook's move to make its platform more advertiser friendly, fair to say that it will be a tough battle to convince users to gobble more ads and let go of more personal data, and to convince advertisers of a premium ROI.

Full article on Brand Republic.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Russian study shows GM soja causes infertility, genetic defects

This 2 years study will be published in July unless it is "killed-off" before that. Truly frightening when we know of the considerable resources deployed to suppress any scientific paper showing harmful side effects of GM food consumptions. The issue is that GM crops contaminate natural crops thus reducing consumer choice. The GM food industry has also been successful at aborting government initiatives to label food containing GM ingredients as such.

Eat organic whenever possible.

Comprehensive article in French here.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Toyota battling Chinese bloggers

"Toyota Motor Corp.'s recall of millions of cars globally has created a PR fiasco for the Japanese car company. In China, the company now has one more thing to worry about..." Bloggers!


Friday, February 05, 2010

US teens don't blog, don' twitter.

Only 14% blog and 8% tweet. 73% use social networks. Speaking of Twitter, a Pew researcher commented that teens may have a "reluctance to put their thoughts on such a public forum when they can post them to their Facebook page instead". Didn't Mark Zuckerberg announced the end of privacy?

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Forget tablet PC, here comes "sixth sense" technology.

"Pranav Mistry demos several tools that help the physical world interact with the world of data -- including a deep look at his Sixth Sense device and a new, paradigm-shifting paper "laptop". Originally read on the Economic Times, on the recommendation of Professor Rao.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Food 2.0.

Looks that the World will not run out of food due to overpopulation after all. Dutch scientists grow artificial meat. Telegraph.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Climate change: Are you thinking in rows or columns?

Decision science applied to climate change. You can't argue with logic. A must watch video for all the skeptics.

Thursday, October 15, 2009

The Trafigura debacle

When ethics and PR collide, a lesson for business and communication students: Own up to your mistakes and proactively remedy the situation you created instead of attempting to conceal it. That stuff worked when we had a handful of TV channels and a few newspapers, not with millions of citizen journalists. Great account on the Guardian.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Climate Cover-Up by Oil lobby

The American Petroleum Institute increased its lobbying budget by 82 percent in the second quarter of 2009, relative to 2008... Makes you think.

Climate Cover Up: the crusade to deny global warming

In his new book, 35-year public relations veteran Jim Hoggan chronicles the history of unethical PR through the years, using the attack on climate change science as the most relevant, contemporary example. Watch this video interview where Jim talks about what he calls the "Philip Morris theory" – a strategy corporations use to cloak their spin with the legitimacy of science.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

Federal Trade Commission to force bloggers' endorsement disclosure

"Bloggers who make an endorsement must disclose the material connections they share with the seller of the product or service." At last... BBC News. Disclosure: I have no connection with the FTC or the BBC.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

Top 10 bizarre wine names

This was sent to me by my friend El Blogador. In order of bizarreness?
  • Fat Bastard (I tried the Shiraz. Quite good and affordable)
  • Bitch
  • Le Vin de Merde ("the shitty wine" in French...)
  • Oops
  • Arrogant Frog
  • Elephant on a tightrope
  • Frog's piss
  • Cleavage Creek
  • Mad Housewife
  • Blasted Church (this is probably banned in the US. See my next post).
Full post and label pictures available on

Friday, September 11, 2009

Friday, September 04, 2009

Men lose their minds speaking to pretty women

"Research shows men who spend even a few minutes in the company of an attractive woman perform less well in tests designed to measure brain function"... My wife probably put it on my poor English. Telegraph again.

Youtube to stream movies?

At last, a legal way to watch on-demand movies online. The $4 price tag will not be a deterrent if streaming quality and speed is higher than the current alternatives. Will the movie moguls play ball? Telegraph.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

The best diving spot in Asia?

The Cacao Pearl island is located off the western shores of Busuanga in Northern Palawan. It would be presumptuous to say that it is the best diving spot in Asia but it is probably the best-kept diving secret in the region. Palawan has over 2,000 kilometers of irregular coastlines, dotted with 1,780 sugar white sandy beaches islands, islets and rocky coves. It also hosts two world heritage sites for diving enthusiasts:

o The Puerto Princesa Subterranean River National Park (UNESCO World Heritage Site) features a large limestone karst landscape with one of the World’s longest underground navigable rivers (8.2km). The site contains a full mountain to sea ecosystem.
o The Tubbatha Reef Marine Park (UNESCO World Heritage Site) covers 332km2 including the North and South Reefs. The site is an excellent example of a pristine coral reef with a spectacular 100M perpendicular wall, extensive lagoons and two coral islands. (tie in with my section on Tubbatha)

Most divers come here to explore shipwrecks. During WWII, the American fleet sank 24 Japanese warships in the area, 12 of them in conveniently shallow water, including swim throughs, technical and Nitrox dives and shallow novice dives and all within a 1.5 hour boat ride in a wide arc around the south side of Busuanga Island. Turning a former war theatre into a divers paradise.

The Cacao Pearl is the ideal base to explore the region’s diving hotspots and indulge in all kind of environmentally friendly marine activities. The Cacao Pearl island hosts eight beaches, secluded coves and crystal clear waters with 30 feet plus of visibility. We have and extensive fringe reef system, allowing you to leisurely slip into the water right off the beach with your snorkel and mask on, and straight into warm waters and a cornucopia of exotic fish and coral. Spot and swim with gentle whale sharks, playful dolphins and a variety of underwater residents such as dugongs, clown fish, lapu-lapu fish, squid, parrot fish, lion fish, glass shrimps, turtles…

The resort will host a PADI 5 star accredited dive centre with resident diving and surfing instructors. Marine activities will include deep-sea sport fishing (catch and release), non-motorised water sports such as house reef snorkelling, kayaking, hobie cats, surfing, kite surfing and wind-surfing. Guests will enjoy regular dive expeditions to the only marine World Heritage site in Asia, Tubbataha reef and the world famous Apo reef located in the Mindoro Straight as well as snorkelling safaris to ancient and protected fringe reef systems, walls, caves, shallow World War II wrecks, and turtle and dugong (manatee) feeding grounds.

A pier and mooring buoys will welcome visiting leisure crafts.