I’m now in the Ballroom at The Legends at Fort Canning Park. If you’re interested to follow me on the day’s line-up at the Singapore DMfest 2008, you can follow me here on my blog or find snap shots from my Samsung Innov8 phone at my tumblr. I’ve never done live blogging before, so erm… I’ll try my best. Updates will be done… the Claudia way! Wahahaha!


I climbed many of these!!

I’d arrived at The Legends, after climbing the hideous stairs from Park Mall, slightly too early. I was among the earliest people arrived and I’m now still trying to find the usual gang… but seeing none YET!

Anyway, before the event starts, I checked out some of the companies showcase outside the ballroom…


Centre for Content Protectection

The Centre for Content Protection (CCP) promotes the research, awareness and implementation of technological solutions for the protection and exploitation of digital and analogue media content.

There’s also the HP and the Blackberry…

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Time now… 9.15am, Mr Ng Chong Khim, Chairman of SiTF Digital Media Chapter giving his welcome speech.

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Now sharing on stage, Mr Michael Yap, Deputy Chief Executive Officer, Media Development Authority of Singapore on Grooming the next generation of digital media players.

With $5million of available fundings, MDA’s goals by 2015 is to fuel a vibrant media sector, establish Singapore as preferred location for IDM R&D and become the pioneers of next general media. Mr Yap is sharing the various programmes and activities available for startups and companies, including the latest launched i.MATCH. Everyone present is encouraged to approach Michael later if they’re looking for funding. :P

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The business of internet and mobile TV by Dr. Patrick Chan, Research Director, Emerging Technologies, IDC Asia Pacific. Now sharing what he think is happening to the Internet – the Web2.0 (according to how he reads, “web-two-dot-o”) effect.

Due to the speed of speech and the tiny TV screen in front, and the even tinnier text, I’m not able to catch anything! :( The lady next to me is frowning too…

Psss… if you want, there’s also the DMfest updates on Twitter. Follow @dmfest.

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Ok, hope I’ll be able to catch this next one… TV 2.0 Infrastructure with Iolo Jones, Founder & CEO, TV Everywhere (UK). Also launching a new product call VidZapper soon.

The business models for Internet TV…


One thing which we all know, Internet TV needs a lower distribution cost than broadcast TV. In fact a much much lower cost, as shown in the diagram on screen.

The technologies needed for Internet TV Automation – VMS: Encoding > Management > Advertising > Delivery > Layout. The technical challenge is the bandwidth provisions. Types of Internet broadcasting includes options to download, unicasting, simulcasting, multicasting, clouding, P2P and CDN.

Have you tried Blinkx? The Video Search Engine!

Iolo sharing the business model for Internet TV. Revenues include sponsorship (the biggest pie), advertising/ advertorials, Ecommerce, subscription, pay-per-view and others.

Why TV models work better than Internet models?

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The Webisodes โ€” How Serialised Television is Moving onto the Internet with Hugh Hancock, Founder and CEO, Strange Company (UK). The Machinima pioneers!

Everybody wants to make videos and everyone is doing it! Some of them just want to emulate their heroes. And sometimes they’re very good at it. Although they may have no experience nor budget, but with their passion and creativity, they’re able to make pretty good videos. With almost no restrictions and guidelines, they’re able to produce videos much faster and the distribution is speedy too.


Hugh Hancock’s stick drawings

Digital video has made live action much cheaper. The best known is The Guild. Another one mentioned is Welcome to the Scene which uses webcams for their videos!

Super cool tools mentioned by Hugh – Motion capture, Music Creation with Garageband, cheap Color Correction and Moviestorm.

There are thousands of people creating but how would one know which is good? Too much noise and the lack of gatekeepers aren’t doing any help to promoting quality content. Viral engines, such as digg and stumbleupon, don’t work cause it doesn’t promote stuff that people love but they promote what people are talking about. Instead, Hugh recommends the moderated site Boing Boing. And there’s the problem of whether its truly famous or just paid to become famous? Than there’s the long thin tail effect.

Choose either to fail fast or to stick hard. Produce something and if it fails, move on and do something else. Or use the Questionable Content way, stick around for awhile and gain people’s trust. Once you get the trust, people will keep coming back, especially with the many content that’s already on your site.

What you should do now is to Get Out There Now! And that’s the end of Hugh’s sharing! And it’s Tea Break time!! Finally!!

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A happy Claudia after morning tea! Good thing the Siew Mai is chicken meat!

And now around me, there’s Clapping Trees, Preetam, DK (with Live broadcast here), Daniel from Young Upstarts and Howie from TDM.

More familiar faces are here… Jonathan, Andrew Peters and a pretty lady whom I’m still trying to recall where I met! Sitting 2 seats away from my left. Hmm… Updated Alright, so the pretty lady I was trying to recall is from Text100.


Back to the conference…

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Starting up after morning tea is on Community Television โ€” Collaboration in Scripting, Subtitling, Distributing, and even Producing Films for the Internet with Timo Vuorensola, founder and producer, Energia Productions Ltd (Finland). Showing the trailer for Star Wreck now.

Timo is sharing his experiences from the production of Star Wreck, which took 7 years to make and did in a small studio in the City of Tampere. With total of 8 million downloads!

Timo shared that many film makers are afraid of collaboration using the Internet. He encourages people to engage and make use of their communities and friends to help distribute and collaborate in the production of a film. With that he ends his insightful sharing of his film making process.

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The next one up is going to be of interest to many of you… Social Networks โ€” Making Business Sense Out of It with Sandeep Bakhshi, Business Unit Executive, Lotus Software, ASEAN Software Group, IBM. He’s coming on stage now…

“Oh no! I think I’m going to have problem with this one…” :(

The new wave of Web2.0 disruptive technology is transforming all aspects of our consumer experiences. Now he’s sharing what is Web2.0 with the audience, showing LOTS of tiny logos of all the Web2.0 sites! The more you use, the more you learn, the better the purpose of Web2.0.

So why should you care about Web2.0? According to Sandeep, its because of the dollars and cents that’s involved.

The three software patterns driving Web2.0…

Three key areas and 8 new rules to consider…

Capitalizing on New Markets & Business Models
1. Grab and monetize the Long Tail of demand
2. Get ready – your customers value digital content
3. Jump in – virtual worlds are real business

Getting closer to your markets & customers
4. Trust the network – it really does know more than you
5. Embrace your customers
6. Use social networks to create solutions

Creating new capabilities
7. Embed flexibility in business models and information systems
8. Foster rapid collaborative innovation in the enterprise

Being repeated is how companies should embrace their customers. Its an essential that all companies should do, and social network and web2.0 are great tools to engage, communicate and embrace your customers. Are you doing that already?

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Next up, a fun, fast and furious panel discussion! (Cause lunch is ready and waiting for all of us outside the ballroom!) Panel discussion with previous speakers Iolo Jones, Hugh Hancock, Timo Vuorensola and Sandeep Bakhshi. Moderated by Mark Laudi.


The panelists on stage

Discussing on the cost involved in online production… and $10,000 is considered too high for an online film and videos. Timo doesn’t encourage dollars and cents to be involved in collaborations. It’s all about karma (which reminds me of Plurk!). Huge shares that the online currency does not mean dollars and cents. There’s other forms of “currency” or rewards too. If you want others to provide things only that you can use, things wouldn’t work that way. Huge encourages for content and creations to be released on Creative Commons, everyone and anyone is free to use the content. That’s how things are happening now.

Two choices to take for startups… If its not your money, take as much as you can. If its your own, use as little as possible. (I like this quote! Ha!) Just go ahead and produce your content and whatever you want, give it out for free and strangely, somewhere somehow, people will come to you with the money you never expect! All these guys are doing things that’s really out of their own passion and doesn’t expect money to come. But just mysteriously, when you doesn’t smell like you’re out there for the money, money will just come. (Hmm…)

You can frame yourself with the right people supporting and it’ll be even better if you’ve a community behind you. Timo shares that its also about branding yourself. People wants to know who is behind the content. What the communities want to know is who are behind the content and not just the content itself. So show yourself and start branding you as you.

That’s the end of the morning session. Now… time for lunch!! *grrrrrrr* That’s the sound of my tummy. :P

Will be back at 2pm for the afternoon session… laterz!

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Before lunch, we’re having a short blogger session with the keynotes speakers, Timo, Hugh and Iolo…

Going round the table to introduce ourselves and to ask a question. (Ok… stress… what question should I ask?? I’m next leh!!)

Phew! So clever of me! I managed to skip asking a question! DK asked a question that’s pretty close to our local bloggersphere… how do they (the speakers) engage and handle negative comments on their sites.

Timo shares that there’s a video with only negative comments and that ended becoming their best publicity effort! Hugh’s tactic is to make his enemies his real friends. If one comments negatively, they expect either no reply or one that fights back. So what Hugh will do is to give a constructive reply and eventually convert the hates to like them. Iola simple will say “You’re wrong!”. LOL!

Videos and films are one of the best tools for learning. Iola personally learns more from watching shows than from books. Yes, pictures tells a thousands words, but videos or shows show you much more than that. Videos are for everybody. So stop reading and start watching!.

Coleman shared that in Singapore, more people are into the extrinsic motivations (money and fame) rather than the intrinsic motivations (knowledge and experience). This is sad but true. And could this be the reason why there’s still the huge lack of user generated content here in Singapore.

After surviving 7 years from self and student/non-employment funding from the government, Timo will surely be using the funds provided by the Finland government for film production, valuing around 700k and up to 1-mil. And because of the cool concept of the film and story, everyone wants to help and chip in for the production.

2.02pm: The blogger session is still going on but I think the afternoon session is going to happen soon! And all of us here in the room have not gotten any lunch yet!! That’s partly the reason why I’m lagging in my updates! (When Claudia is hungry, her brain and fingers refuses to work.)

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As the day passes, more bloggers arrive… Coleman, Walter and there’s Qua Chee from Malaysia here earlier whom I missed out in my previous update. And I heard, Pat Law and Derrick Kwa is on their way here too.

2.10pm: The bell is ringing outside the room, calling everyone to get back to the ballroom for part 2. But but but… we haven’t had our lunch!! Discussion is still happening here at the blogger session! *faints* Looks like I’ll be missing the next panel discussion on Digital Production and Visualisation. Just hoping that there’ll still be food outside later!

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Back from a quick lunch. The room seems much smaller now. But still a good crowd of people around. Now on stage, Mr Kenneth Liang, Executive VP of TV Channel 5 Programming and Production of Mediacorp. I’m trying to catch up with what he’s sharing…

Still trying to catch up… but he’s already at his last slide! I guess the sharing was about the broadcast vs the narrowcast (e.g. online).

Sidenote: To all presenters, reading off a written script doesn’t engage your audience at all. Try doing it without the notes please. Thanks!

The forth panelists on stage now Mr Stefano Virgilli, Director of Ultimate Video FX and Manager of Adobe User Group Singapore for Photoshop and After Effects. He’s going to show us some pretty cool videos! Setting up now… MBP Crashed! Rebooting… he’s now sharing why he’s collecting all possible Adobe certification!

This discussion is about storytelling. How to get the story across to the audience? And how to tell it in the way(s) that users want.

Are audiences watching a movie for the story or the effects and eye-candies that comes with it? If the story is incredible and fantastic, are effects and sights necessary? Yes, they generally make the movie more pleasing and enjoyable. Isn’t it? Ask yourself, if you’re invited to watch a fantastically written and scripted movie but is pixelated, would you enjoy the show?

Mediacorp’s production more for local than for international audiences. Kenneth shares that production for locals and international still varies, due to the type of audiences, and their preferences. For instance, shows like Calefare and The Noose, will probably be a joke to the international audiences, but they get very high ratings here in Singapore. Hence there’s a need for productions that feeds the local taste and also joint collaboration with international productions to produce films to target the international market, which may not be highly rated here in Singapore.

Kenneth share that in the past, television used to attract the audiences. But now, its the content pursuing the audience in their preferred platform. Hence the need for TV Mobile and mobTV.

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Next panel discussion will be on Web-Enabled Business Models & Channels of Distribution. First on stage Paul Meyers, CEO of Acme Mobile, sharing his journey thus far. They have four business models – wholesale, selling directly to customers through Acme Mobile, distribution networks and lastly free distribution (and than do cross-selling and advertisement to bring in the money).

On stage, the second panelist, James Seng, VP of International Sales of PPLive (China). James’ sharing his work in PPLive and what it does. One of the greatest advantage of PPLive is the sharing of live sessions, especially for soccer.

Next up, Philip Morgan, Chief Operating Officer of Muvee Technologies. Muvee is a Singapore company, 7 years old with 60 staff. They distribute Muvee with PC software (with HP, Nokia, Dell, Nikon and others), devices and Internet. Than they started a new site for users to create and share at shwup. Muvee looks fun, but its on Windows only! :(

Lastly on the panel, Joanne Teoh, Senior Producer of Channel NewsAsia. She’s currently exploring the use of digital tools to tell stories on the web – New Media Storytelling. Content producers should focus on your strength and don’t try to create something that you’re not familiar with. Young journalists are encouraged to equipped themselves with digital media tools to help improve their work and experiences. Perhaps journalists from Singapore can do live blogging with videos, photos and text of an event too!

Psss… she’s taking too long for her sharing!

Now let’s get back to the panel discusssion…

Content is not the money brewing item online, but the things around it is. Just like blogging is never going to earn any of us an income, but the advertorial and sponsorship around the blog or blogger does bring some money to some of the blogs/bloggers out there. (Well not for me yet thou. Why??)

Will PPV model eventually have to go and move towards advertising and sponsorship models? Paul shares that users would eventually be willing to pay for specific information that’s needed at a point. E.g. A visitor in Singapore wanting to know where to go for food in the middle of the night around Orchard Road. However, when there’s already information out there available for free, will users still want to pay for it? Unless the only channel they’re aware of is the paid one isn’t it?

Sorry for the lack of update here… kinda in offline mode for awhile just now. Now’s tea break time… be back later…

Over break, I met another blogger! Helloooo Shalabh! Nice meeting you! And Bernard Leong is here too.

BTW, Pat says Hiiiii!!! :P

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Back from tea break, had chicken wanton and vegetarian roll. Tea too of course!

Now on stage, sharing Opportunities for the Net Generation with Nicholas Ang, Design Student of Ngee Ann Polytechnic, and creator of the DMfest logo. He shared how he created the logo, which I wouldn’t be sharing as its supposed to be trade secret isn’t it? :P

That’s him! Young designer!

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Lastly, the final panel discussion for the day is on Web 2.0 and Building Online Communities. First on stage, Mr Aroon Tan, Managing Director and Co-Founder of Magma Studios.

Next we have a familiar face… Jonathan Wong, Web Platform Evangelist from Microsoft Singapore. He’s sharing how technology has enabled the growth of building online communities. Preview of the new (possible) mobTV portal! *woot* Sneak peek! Looking pretty cool! As a mobTV ex-user, this new interface looks so much cooler and more user friendly than the current one. However, the question is, will our broadband speed allow seamless use of this platform? If it hangs the browser while interacting with the platform, users will eventually lose interest. At least I know I will. Finally he shared the user interactivity at the Singtel Grid Girl site (not recommended for the ladies thou and it needs Silverlight to play…).

The third on stage is S.P. Raja, SOA Architect from IBM. Sharing the framework for media – technology, what motivates them and who. Community websites need to have an element to keep and track users’ profile, their movement and behavior. Motivation for users, as shared by Raja, the 7 deadly sins! The technology pattern of web2.0 – contribute, classify, rate and spread. The future (web3.0?) will be into semantic search on video indexes.

Forth on the panel… Lai Kok Fung, CEO of BuzzCity Pte Ltd. BuzzCity is in the field of mobile internet for almost 10 years. Mr Lai shared that there are two tiers of mobile internet users. The first tier where users use mobile as their secondary channel for web consuming (like many of us here) and the other tier is where users use mobile as their primary channel. This is where BuzzCity is managing, and is big in India. They run a community-based mobile advertising network. Two reasons why people come to the community, they want to find friends and feel loved. myGamma is the mobile platform by BuzzCity.

Last but not least, on stage is Hu Shunjie, Flex Developer at Seesmic. Seesmic is a video side that allows communication not just on their site, but on your own too. One of our local bloggers (currently oversea), Kelvin Lim, uses their service pretty often. Shunjie shares the importance of allowing users and community members to provide inputs. Sites mentioned during his introduction include Get Satisfaction, OtherInbox, Twitter, Friendfeed and Blogs.

Running overtime (again), we’re now into the panel discussion on Web 2.0 and Building Online Communities.


The final panel for dmfest 2008

The discussion is being directed back to how online content can bring in money! Sounds familiar ah? Mr Lai shared the leading content provider that have successfully made money out of their content are Habbo Hotel and one more from China which has slipped out from my mind! Well, this is what happens after 8 hours of live blogging! Mind is kinda overloaded now…

With few more points discussed, this marks the end of today’s Singapore Digital Media Festival 2008 – Television 2.0: Internet Services and New Media Mashup. Thank you all for following my very first attempt at live blogging! Hope I managed to share most part of the conference with you.

Signing off… byeeee!

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Footnotes
Here are other links and blogs talking about DMfest 2008 too…

Here’s the link to the fantastic moderator for the whole conference… Mark Laudi. He’s very good! Smooth and engaging. Highly recommended by me (Claudia) for your event! (If you’ve got very good budget of course!)


18 Replies to “LIVE from Singapore Digital Media Festival 2008”

  1. HI Claudia,
    Nice meeting you in person at the event- and it was great (and inspiring) to see you so dedicated-ly covering the event.
    I must say your post covers the event details pretty well. Kudos from my side.
    I’ll probably right about it tomorrow…
    Cheers
    Shalabh
    http://shalabh.wordpress.com

  2. Well done Claudia! Wonderful LIVE blog – Wouldn’t know that this was your first time. :)

    Regarding web applications which hang may drive users away… That’s absolutely true. However, that is not something unique for Rich Internet Applications (RIA). Even a normal website may hang as well.

    I think RIA technology (regardless whether it’s Silverlight, Flash, or AJAX) generally is stable enough that it won’t just hang… unless the programmer did a bad job of course. :)

  3. hey. nice report on the DMF 2008. I was there. by the way do you have email? Since u covered the event I have a few things to ask if it’s okay with you.

  4. Hi Claudia,

    Nice account of the event. I wish that I was there earlier if not for work commitments. But I guess that I can read your account now about the whole event.

  5. Pingback: Armchair Theorist

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