Common User

Me rambling on.

Wednesday, August 03, 2005

Yahoo: Head of Social Media

Paid Content (via Simon Waldman) reports that Yahoo have hired Elisabeth Osder as Senior Director, Social Media in their media group. Yahoo Media VP; Scott Moore argues that this area is will be one of their 3 top priorities this year (along with user experience and broadband.) The PC report quotes Moore and goes on...
"(this is) a clear indicator of our intention to go deep in social media and user-generated content." Her initial task will be to set up a plan that integrates Yahoo's growing phalanx of social media tools -- Yahoo 360, Flickr, etc. -- with an emphasis on interesting user-generated content. "Figuring out how to harness the power of that self-expression and user-generated content, not only the willingness and desire to share, is the essence of what is Elizabeth is going to do for us," says Moore. Part of her job is to figure out what kind of resources will be needed. Adds Moore, "This is a real initiative and a real focus for us. We'll do what it takes."

Jeremy Zawodny, from the Yahoo Search group came to visit us at the end of July and this appointment confirms many of the themes and memes from his presentations both to the BBC and to Open Tech that weekend ( including his non denial denial that Y! were developing a blog search.) James Boardwell has encapsulated it perfectly in his post; Yahoo: more like human activity and less like software. where he describes the data centric world that Zawodny hinted at but argues that trust will be the issue to solve (and identifiers! *pdf) once these types of models are established.

the main issue will then be around trust. Who do you trust to provide this information? How do you 'know' the data is itself trustworthy? You don't. You have to go with the filter you use - and the 'brand values' of 'trust'. Who do you trust? Yahoo!? Google? the BBC? And to what extent?
This is a conversation that i feel like i've had many times over. And will have again.


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