What Should I Call It?

I need some help deciding what term to use when I write about organizations. Companies? Corporations? Organizations? Firms? Enterprises? Please. Let me know what you think.

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Will Mobile Devices Usher in a Renaissance in Local News?

Tell you where I am and tell me what matters...

Mobile devices will usher in a renaissance in local news. With Google, Facebook, Yelp and others building services to help us buy more local goods and services, there will be natural pressure for other kinds of location-based information and news as we layer millions of small posts, tags and comments onto our physical surroundings.

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Why Google Sparks Matters

Sparking our imaginations

Sparks is critical to protecting Google's golden egg - its search business - from Facebook. With Sparks, Google is trying to get you to share interesting content with people using Circles rather than Facebook. Facebook gets social, but Google really gets information - so here are a few speculations on where Google is likely to take Sparks:

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Social Networks and the Renaissance of Local News

Weaving the news...

The new economics of local news distribution rests on linking and networking behavior, and that requires a whole new type of relationship with readers - one that treats them less like passive consumers and more like proactive partners in disseminating news.

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Social Enterprise and the Renaissance of Local News

All the news that's fit for mission

The old business model for local news is deep in debt and essentially running on fumes. The notion of a truly mission-driven news entity is quite compelling. We see examples of it running quite effectively in the nonprofit world in entities such as YES! Magazine, Grist, and High Country News. While these organizations have editorial voices and geographic territories that make them operationally quite different from a local newspaper, they do paint a picture of what could be possible on a municipal level.

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The Great Unbundling and Collapse of Local Newspapers

Ads evaporating into the Interwebs

The web's unbundling of the local newspaper business model didn't occur all at once, but as a one-two punch of vertical marketplaces for easily aggregated data like car buying, and crowd-sourcing platforms to get at the fragmented, more difficult to aggregate information in local markets. In essence, what the Internet did was enable web-based businesses to cherry-pick the profitable pieces out of the local newspaper's business model. When that happened, the flow of money for reporter salaries came under increased pressure and newsrooms across the US were slowly eviscerated.

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The Information Needs of Communities

Time to say goodbye?

This is the first in a five-part-series on the decline, fall and possible renaissance of local news. In this first installment, I share key excerpts from a very interesting report on the state of local news by the Federal Communications Commission. The report is called "The Information Needs of Communities: The Changing Media Landscape in a Broadband Age" and it's not your typical government bureaucracy report.

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How to Strengthen Your Organization’s Influence Mapping

Lots of targets, lots of influence

Part 4 of 4: Organizations that are permeable are more open to influence from their external environment. That makes them more resilient and able to align themselves with market forces. Being open to influence is only one aspect of permeability, however. The other crucial aspect of permeability is being able to exert influence. As I’ve noted, influence mapping is an important ...

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Influence: the Flip Side of Permeability

I am you and you are me

Part 3 of 4: Doing effective influence mapping isn’t easy, just as creating effective geographic maps isn’t easy. To be useful, the map needs to describe the actual terrain – and for that, you need people who understand how the decisions that impact your desired outcome actually get made. Not how you wish they get made, mind you, but how they actually ...

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5 Steps to Influence Mapping

Influence: getting them to melt in your hands

Part 2 of 4: As Walmart’s move to sustainability illustrates, when you scratch below the surface of most institutional change, there’s usually a handful of relationships that play a disproportionately large role in bringing those changes about. That’s part of the reason it’s hard to truly separate institutional change from personal change. Each of us depends on our ability to create change, and quite ...

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