Sunday, March 11, 2007

The 'Information Revolution'

I was on the tube this morning and I noticed an ad for the 'information revolution'. Wasn't entirely sure what it was, nor who it was for.

This intrigued me, so I remembered the URL on the advert and had a look at the site when I got home. It annoyed me as I don't like letting those creative types know how successful they were at their cunning cross media approach. In my opinion, I'm only interested in it because I'm a geek.

The site purports to be telling people about the dangers of relying on only one information source. It features interviews with 'real people' and some unsourced facts about the peril we are exposing ourselves to.

Although they don't explicitly say it, they are arguing that you shouldn't just use Google to do your searches - you should diversify.

I strongly suspect that this site is a cunning attempt by Yahoo! or Ask to subvert people into changing their searching habits. The site doesn't have any adservers tracking activities on the site, and there is nothing overtly associated with any brand.

The only clue that something is weird is the search box in the bottom right of the site.Seems unusual to put them in alphabetical order...

I ran a WHOIS on the URL (a technique for finding who owns the website) and found it registered to a little company called Profero. One of my best friends, Lydia, works there and therefore I know that it's a digital advertising agency.

A quick look at their client list shows that they have both Yahoo! and Ask. I'm not sure this is the kind of thing that Yahoo would be willing to sign off - they're a bit overly corporate and this seems quite brave. Therefore I think it's Ask Jeeves looking to change people's behaviour.

It is a good site, but I think it falls just short of where it needs to be. There's no controversy, there needs to be more emphasis on the bad things that could happen if we all used Google.

Getting in trouble with the legal department is difficult, but it does need to make some statements that show it's some kind of movement rather than a corporate site. Maybe make up a term about 'information pollution' or some catchy name for a homogenous infrastructure.

Might keep an eye on it to see what happens!

1 comment:

  1. erm.. since when has y come before m in the alphabet?! :)