Mitch Ratcliffe

Mitch Ratcliffe is a veteran journalist, media executive and entrepreneur. He was editor of the ground-breaking Digital Media newsletter in the 1990s and a frequent contributor to ZDNet over the years. He led development of the first Web audio/video news network at ON24, sat on the board of Electric Classifieds Inc. and Match.com, and worked as an investment banker. A dedicated "portfolio career" worker, Mitch is co-founder and Chief Scientist of BuzzLogic LLC, a social network analytics and marketing communications platform developer, and works with Audible Inc. on its podcasting service, among other projects detailed <a href="http://www.ratcliffe.com/ disclosure.htm">here</a>. </p>

Latest Posts

McCain's campaign team has no Facebook chops

McCain's campaign team has no Facebook chops

You have to admire the chutzpah of the idea of convincing voters that they should vote for a candidate through an arcade game rip-off of Space Invaders, because it's simply ludicrous coming from a candidate who has declared he doesn't even know how to "use a computer." Aaron Jacobs-Smith of The New Politics Institute wrote up his encounter with John McCain's "Pork Invaders" game, which fervent McCainiacs can embed in their Facebook pages:I just blasted away close to $2.

published July 1, 2008 by

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What is a company blogger good for?

What is a company blogger good for?

I often hear from companies that want to "be social" or "hire a blogger." Usually, there hasn't been any effort put into the question of what they'd like to accomplish from the effort, so I send out the following.

published June 30, 2008 by

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Scribes, professionals and the decline of mass media

Scribes, professionals and the decline of mass media

Clay Shirky, in his Here Comes Everybody, devotes a chapter, "Everyone is a media outlet", to a comparison of the decline of scribal production to the decline of "professional" journalism. He sets up this analogy on faulty legs that leave the argument that "what was once a chasm is now a mere slope [between "professional" journalism and committing acts of journalism or journalistic-like writing or photopublication]" completely unsupported.

published June 9, 2008 by

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Data Portability: Social Infrastructure still very much wanting

Data Portability: Social Infrastructure still very much wanting

In a penetrating analysis of the Facebook developers forum, 20bits shows that the participation of programmers in the discussion about the Facebook platform is rapidly dwindling, which suggests the platform itself is incompatible with the needs of the market. The fewer programmers writing for the Facebook platform, the less relevant that platform will be.

published May 8, 2008 by

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Creeping totalitarianism: The NSA, personal data and you

Creeping totalitarianism: The NSA, personal data and you

Here's a simple rule for preventing totalitarian rule in any nation: Don't build the systems for monitoring people's daily lives closely in the first place, and you will not be at risk of totalitarian rulers using those systems to overwhelm individual choice. The Wall Street Journal today has a long piece on the various ways that the National Security Agency has expanded its ability to monitor individuals within the United States without a warrant.

published March 10, 2008 by

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Presidential candidates: Take a data integrity and transparency pledge

Presidential candidates: Take a data integrity and transparency pledge

Whomever you support for president, I hope you'll consider joining me in asking the candidates for a pledge that they will enforce data integrity policies at least as rigorous as expected of publicly traded companies, and that they'll open their administration to public scrutiny of most public policy.After eight years of an presidency that considers itself immune to the simplest email storage requirements, the United States could use some insight into how decisions are made at the White House.

published March 3, 2008 by

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FCC sure we're headed to Hell, ass first

FCC sure we're headed to Hell, ass first

WASHINGTON (AdAge.com) -- ABC is appealing the Federal Communications Commission's decision to fine the Walt Disney network and 45 of its stations a total of $1,237,500 for airing scenes of a woman's buttocks on a 2003 episode of "NYPD Blue.

published February 22, 2008 by

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GenieTown: Local services as local community

GenieTown: Local services as local community

In a market where many of the global players have local listings for businesses and service providers, GenieTown is starting at the ground level and building up. The company, which made its public debut today, is a knowledge-sharing community built around person-to-person and small-business services providers in the Bay Area.

published February 20, 2008 by

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Retail displays transform transactions and markets

Retail displays transform transactions and markets

I was invited to a Microsoft forum on advanced retail display technology last week and came away with a strange sense that, although the future is going to look a lot like BladeRunner's stifling advertising environment, it could also be useful and powerful for the customer, not just the advertiser. We have to think about how to display information in a way that is important to purchase decision-making, not just try to tell people why they should buy, buy, buy!

published February 11, 2008 by

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