Google talk

Google talk: Om Malik has a theory about rumors regarding Google introducing an instant messaging client. If Om is correct, Google will use Jabber technology which will enable its users to have voice conversations with users of AOL IM and Apple’s iChat.

My dream “communications tool” would allow me to use iChat’s awesome IM-based video conferencing feature with someone on a Windows platform (without using a third-party host). Anyone know of any workable hacks in that department?

RSS feeds and podcasts from state and federal sources

RSS feeds and podcasts from state and federal sources: A while back, I pointed to this directory of RSS feeds provided by federal agencies. In looking for it tonight, I ran across a couple of other helpful resources for policy wonks seeking RSS feeds: The RSS in Government weblog ( has a large directory of state and federal RSS feeds (however, it appears to be inactive currently). Also, there is a new directory of podcasts being offered by states and federal government agencies at the website Free Government Information.

(freegov link via:

On Target

On Target: AdAge’s Jonah Bloom explains why Target’s take-over of the current issue of The New Yorker was a brilliant move…and why it’s nothing new.


The idea of a presenting sponsor taking ownership of a media channel is not new. As a tactic it enjoyed its broadcast heyday between 1930 and 1960, and has popped up periodically across all media ever since. Still, as I flicked through the August 22 issue of the New Yorker it dawned on me that it’s time is now.

Jonah gets it.

By the way, the publisher of the New Yorker was kind enough to send me an e-mail over the weekend thanking me for “getting it.” I’d say that moved him up a notch on my list of most admired magazine publishers, however he maxed out that meter long ago.

Oh, yeah?

Oh, yeah? Now, if I were trying to be funny, I’d get into some trash talk feud with Jonathon Rheingold over something he’s said. Rheingold is the publisher of the hip hop magazine, XXL. In talking about the custom published magazine XXL has just done for the Sirius station owned by Eminem, Shade 45, Rheingold said the following:

“Typically, custom publishing projects do not work, since the consumer gets turned off to the overall advertising message…The hip-hop consumer is even more critical. But in the case of XXL Presents Shade 45, since Shade 45 is a truly authentic and uncensored rap radio channel, the marriage with the XXL brand made sense. Therefore, we were able to create a magazine that the fans will want.”

Where did he pull that “typically, custom publishing projects do not work” fact from? I can say with confidence that I’ve reviewed most of the major research of the past two decades relating to the effectiveness of custom publishing — in general and related to specific titles — and there is no evidence to suggest that “typically,” custom publishing projects do not work.

I would continue with this dissing, but I understand that typically, publishers of rap magazines shoot people who disagree with them.