Tuesday, 23 December 2008

My comments re China blogging, suicide, libel lawsuit, adultery: Webmasters Found Guilty of Online Harassment

Webmasters Found Guilty of Online Harassment

This unfortunate episode in China has highlighted many first. 

Blogging is becoming 'mainstream', but would major publications/blogger be deterred from 'engaging' in the future given this case? 

Privacy could also considered more important in the future, but could it really affect how the people would behave in China, given the 'crowd syndrom' over there?

The case is unfortunate (especially a life is lost!), but another view will also need to be considered where multiple wives are kept for those of more affluent individuals (which some may argue could be immoral), but blogging might also be an empowering 'tool' as otherwise we might not have heard about this, nor would it be reported by CaiJing!

Real question lies, whether/when/if blogging could be a key tool to bring 'real' transparencies towards business, political arenas and become the engine that enable entrepreneurial growth in China. 

Wednesday, 10 December 2008

My comments: Freezing cold, no internet, boring: it's a French web 2.0 conference! |

Freezing cold, no internet, boring: it's a French web 2.0 conference! |
Technology |

Brilliant post, some might argue that it was a bit harsh.. but I have never been to @LeWeb, have to trust PaulCarr's judgement.

thanks to twitter, I am now in touch with (& following) this brilliant community of Press/PR/Web/Technology /Entrepreneurial market.

Lets hope we can take that challenge up and do something smaller & yet warmer, with internet and cater for for those partial with drinks over here in London, not sure if I like hot tub with mostly men though.



Report of Gambit on CRM, what is key for the gaming gambling sector to reach, acquire AND retain their customers, November 08

Gambit on CRM, what is key for the gaming gambling sector to reach, acquire AND retain their customers, November 08, Gambit previous event

What more can I say? 

The reports says it all, just mark your diary, for the next one on 12th Feb.2009!

We will focus on something more interesting/glamorous about licensing Brands/Formats etc.! 

Tuesday, 9 December 2008

Good idea BUT ppl were looking! Spy Lens at The Photojojo Store

Spy Lens at The Photojojo Store

its a great idea

but if you look at the photos, seems like EVERYONE being photographed were looking at the lens because it is SO obvious! 


My thooughts re: Understanding HP Lab’s Twitter Research

Understanding HP Lab’s Twitter Research

Great post/insights, from Jeremiah, I am learning to know his 'real star' quality now in the Twitter world! this research is a mush read.

many thanks! I am one of those described above (or worst), as I created the account in April07, and started re-using it Nov/Dec08! Personal view: I think Twitter will not be mainstream until: 1.) It provide better privacy protection (not everyone want to 'blog' nor share the innermost secrets (within reasons), so, I have to use a 'public' profile and friends will have to follow me on my private & protected feed) 2.) groups At present, even with help of TweekDeck, it is still too many tweets and no easy way of managing all the information 3.) better computer/mobile client it will need more 'integrated' approach, as yes, it has 6+million users, but they have to rely on various 'hacks' or 3rd party clients to view/track/comment/re-tweet.. its too geeky (not that I am not.. but I am not joe blog the mass market.. and only when there is a more seamless client that the brand can really leverage/track/invest in using the channel to approach the market. Lets face it, the brand/media/FMCG leaders are just starting to understand online (limited mobile).. BR Gareth twitter: @garethwong

Saturday, 6 December 2008

Free videos 60 Minutes - Video, Reports, Profiles, Interviews - CBSNews.com

In many ways, I missed the time when I could watch CBS's 60minutes, great program although quite often with US focus but good program all the same. 

Good that we can watch it worldwide, rest of the world, feel jealous, as we in UK can watch tonnes of great documentaries, thanks to BBC's iplayer (but sadly its geolocked, as I tried to access it when I travelled to europe/asia.. )

60 Minutes - Video, Reports, Profiles, Interviews - CBSNews.com

This is a JAM.. 10 Awesome BlackBerry apps - Download Squad

10 Awesome BlackBerry apps - Download Squad

Thanks @loiclemeur

will try it out later

My thoughts: Characters who should tweet | Tom Watson MP

Characters who should tweet | Tom Watson MP

congrat. on your galant effort if you can convince them.  

However, despite my tech. background and in the 'tech' space since the 90s, I am still not comfortable with 'broadcasting' my life via blog, let alone twittering which is more personal and immediate (esp. via mobile & sms)  

Since I got a twitter account back in Apr07, I only started using it in the last few weeks, and I still keep my feed private. my thinking is that it is not yet ready for people that wants to keep privacy, its all very good with guys like @jemimakiss, & @guykawasaki who are already in public domain as part of the job or someone that want to use it as a tool to promote his business/activities.  

IMHO, I think it maybe difficult, as even person like myself who organise things, speak in conferences in my sector, I still to be honest like to 'keep to myself' or at least with those that I know.. I would hate to have people come up to me and says they know my family or my inner most secret when I have never heard of them before etc. (sometimes I forget, I have to admit, thats why I rely on my notes on my blackberry)..  

Therefore, until twitter can cater for people like me, where I keep my twitter feed private & yet still can interact with wider world (namely, can elect to interact with people publicly, maybe on a tweet by tweet basis), then yes, I think your work in trying to convince the said names above would be much easier.  

Hope to meet you sometime in the coming months/years,  

Best Regards  

Gareth Wong  

Twitter ID: @garethwong

Friday, 5 December 2008

Beware! BBC NEWS | Business | Parents warned on fake consoles

BBC NEWS | Business | Parents warned on fake consoles

Well, we should not be supporting the black market, especially if it pose as danger for our children. 

I have not checked the wii console from GAME yet, but maybe once when "santa delivered" it on 25th! ..

Have a great and safe Christmas all. 

Thursday, 4 December 2008

My thoughts: Twittersphere in shock as Tony Benn reveals he's never even heard of Twitter... |

Twittersphere in shock as Tony Benn reveals he's never even heard of Twitter... |
Media |

  • Challenge in our new digital world is one of trust.

    first challenge is 'who is really' behind the digital account, how do we know behind the twitter account garethwong and in fact the person typing this message is really me?

    @tonybenn without the profile picture could genuinely be another tony benn!

    Because of everyone just chasing short/medium term success within the dot.com world, we need something more sustainable, that works on market structural issues.

    There are only limited number of companies that are trying to bring the trust and transparency in terms of digital ID, like Garlik, we need more! or do tell me who!

    This happens before, as few weeks back, there was a 'Michael Dell' (pretend to be) that joined LinkedIn, and created some storms over there also..

    interesting time.



    Monday, 1 December 2008

    my comments re Online Gambling's Illegality Video - CBSNews.com

    Online Gambling's Illegality Video - CBSNews.com

    I have always loved 60minutes, thanks for highlighting another key challenge for the remote gaming gambling world.  

    However, I hope to clarify that US is NOT the world, and there are many great gaming jurisdictions worldwide that not only license up to highest standards (like Nevada) but also monitor and continuously improve their law to prevent fraud & protect consumers and vulnerable.  

    Challenge remains that no G8 nation has come out with a credible regulation for remote gaming with viable tax regime to regulate remote gaming gambling products/services. Closest we had was Gambling Act 2005 in UK however, the tax was too great to convince offshore firms to move back.  

    Therefore, as an independent financial guarantee company, GamBond® we work with regulators to put a price on default risk (going bust or license get pulled from a well regulated jurisdiction) of the gaming firms so that we can have a transparent ways of comparing viability of various regulated companies.  

    Its a multi-billion industry worldwide that has just over 10 years history, thats why we are seeing a huge amount of collaborations between regulators to work together. Fact remains that no one country can legislate for the world! Prohibition means that only black market providers can operate and its nearly impossible to monitor and protect millions of consumers.  

    Best regards  

    Gareth Wong 

    Founder CEO 
    GamBond® Ltd.

    The Full 60minutes video is below.

    Saturday, 29 November 2008

    Chk this out - This World: American Time Bomb

    this is great program, finally got time to catchup on sky+, for UK located people, pls do check this out on BBC

    rest of the world, pls find it and watch it, its great 'case study' for your own country.. 

    I personally try not to have much debt (except mortgage) but also try to invest for the future as enterpreneur.. its tough but its definitely thought provoking! 

    BBC iPlayer - This World: American Time Bomb 

    Tuesday, 25 November 2008

    AT&T's iJustine Web Series Doesn't Exactly Go Viral - Advertising Age - DigitalNext

    AT&T's iJustine Web Series Doesn't Exactly Go Viral - Advertising Age - DigitalNext

    maybe proof that 'popularity' in social network does not really translate to other media..

    like big brother 'celebrity' mostly fizzle out.. 

    or maybe the question is whether the number of 'views' online is misleading as generally it is NOT unique view based on IP address for example.. 

    Chinese Consumer: Making The Sale

    Chinese Consumer: Making The Sale

    Its rather interesting to observe what make Chinese consumers tick over in China. 

    the POS assistants are common place, mostly due to cheap labour and brands are bringing the competition at the check out level...

    Variants of this could be applicable for the developed world where labour cost could be slashed... but how could POS assistants assist consumers that are looking for value mostly?

    Friday, 21 November 2008

    Reputational risk for mobile operators

    I really admire all these people that holds down a full time job, has hobbies and can publish a blog.. I am an entrepreneur; organiser/networker and I don't have time to go through all my daily emails. let alone blog. 


    Good thing is that I did not managed to speak at G2E this week in Vegas, although it was an honour for me to be invited to speak on Frank Fahrenkopf's panel focusing on future of on-line gaming.  However, due to work commitments and meetings in London, I could not go.. we all can only expect some movements in US's remote regulations probably mid-end of 2009.. so, like the market, I am taking short term tactical decision to stay put in London, but then also manage to help chair couple of key panels at the 5th Annual mobile gambling summit of bullet business.


    I feel I owe it to my Mobile Gambling Report readers ( iTV and mobile gaming gambling report back in 2006) to give them an update. 


    Good news is that mobile operators are more progressive now and are finally looking at ways (& take concrete steps in) to monetising or bring value added services to their users.  For example, O2 had a gaming portal few years back, then Orange launched that a year ago and 3 six months before and Vodafone just launched this week with the dedicated gaming & betting portal. 


    However, something that has not change, which is that, as I explained in my mobile gambling report back in 2004, mobile operators are in the “defensive game”, due to the potential reputational risk of getting too engaged with 3rd party casino gaming/gambling products.  (who can blame them when they have invested typically billions into infrastructure/licenses and brand)


    This is in no reflection of quality (high standards) of remote gaming operators out there, in fact, there are many well respected, well run and socially responsible gaming gambling firms out there.  Their products and services are already available via the MNO's portal and or via their mobile internet service. 


    Due to the potential reputational risk, MNOs would prefer to keep their distance and promote mobile internet usage than promote specifically any type of content (especially Casino gaming & gambling).  [I can understand though, as all we need is just one small bad apple, and likes of Mail get hold of it.. recipe to even move/influence governments, let alone fate of one mobile network operator.]


    Therefore, the basis of competition between MNOs is still based on typical voice (now adding more than likely all-inclusive data).. therefore, seems to me they are still stuck in their own rung of the value chain, namely to provide mostly a 'pipe' offering. 


    Yes, some are more keen on mobile search (via yahoo/google) or advertising model, indeed thats the easiest way to 'monetise' MNO's mobile portal.  They are however seeing big growth of data adoptions between the generation Y, due to the adoption of facebook and Flirtomatic applications, seems social networking rules. 

    This is a one stop shop model, like in a shopping mall, where users can come and shop as they like and with whom they like (within reasons).


    We also explored the various business models from partnership to purely advertising ‘pay per click’ model via the mobile.  Seems like it is rather fluid and depends on the preferences of a specific mobile operator.  None has a seamless and economically viable payment system, of course none would use subscribers’ credit to fund any gaming gambling.


    Fact of the matter is that, none are as progressive as in Austria, where Mobilkom Austria part own PayBox which has apparently seamless integration to enable payment via users’ mobile telephone credit for payments of all products including gaming gambling. However, they manage the potential reputational risks by ONLY working with the national monopoly Lotterien (Win2day) and Bwin (previously betandwin).  So, its managed but better integrated.


    I trust the real opportunity is in fact in the middle. How, who and when that can be achieved, that would be the question.  I may have an answer, but let’s chat more in person to see if we can convert that to a big and sustainable solution going forward. 

    Thursday, 16 October 2008

    How to do New York for free | USA - Times Online

    How to do New York for free | USA - Times Online

    despite exchange rate of £ vs US$..

    may still be worthwhile if we can see the big apple free
    could be some good tips for our next visit. 

    or any one else has better suggestions? 

    Wednesday, 15 October 2008

    FOCUS Guide: Children in the UK

    FOCUS Guide: Children in the UK

    Just come across this magazine by a group focusing on helping expats in UK.

    interesting read, I have just seen a few pages, but thought I would blogg it so that I can find it later! ;) 

    hope you may find it useful. 


    Sunday, 12 October 2008

    123people.co.uk | Find everyone you (want to) know!

    123people.co.uk | Find everyone you (want to) know!

    very interesing service, a good friend/contact of mine just become their CEO

    we should support more enterpreneurs from Europe, try it out, find what the web really has on you.. and what others are saying about you.. 

    am really curious as to how they can 'remove' bad pages/allegations on one's reputation.. 

    very interesting indeed! ;) 

    Friday, 10 October 2008


    TradeDoubler 2008 summit

    thanks for the invite guys, Matt

    It was one of the better events I go to and learnt a lot, despite I could only stay half a day. 

    any of you guys that are serious about affiliate growth whatever markets, should speak with tradedoubler.. ;) 

    Thursday, 2 October 2008

    Gambling Guidance Published

    Gambling Guidance Published

    "Convergence between gaming using multi-channel access, particularly broadcast and iTV will be common place, CAP, BCAP codes are key regulation to be observed and followed rather than by-passed!"

    CAP and BCAP have launched new guidance for gambling advertisements.  The guidance focuses on three clauses common to the TV, radio and non-broadcast Codes, which state that marketing communications should not: suggest that gambling can provide an escape from personal, professional or educational problems such as loneliness or depression; suggest that solitary gambling is preferable to social gambling; exploit cultural beliefs or traditions about gambling or luck. 

    Careers@Singapore: UK

    Careers@Singapore: UK in October, London 

    some fellow alumni please note, you know some of you were asking me for contacts for asia.. well, Asia is coming to you this Oct. well, a selection of singaporean companies are! check this out!

    Friday, 26 September 2008

    True Web2.0 services, not just talking about it, lets do it! Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon.com, Inaugural Betting & Gaming Technology Workshop Nov08

    Jeff Bezos, Founder of Amazon.com

    This is what is key, I think, I see too many people just talk about what can be done, but doing it at scale but enabling the future is key.

    To be honest, there is a lot of wasted resources in the IT field, and one good example is the now burgeoning remote gaming gambling market, where by multi-millions of uk pounds, US$ are spent on developing proprietary platforms, servers and technologies, common APIs are not generally adopted.

    Hence, together with Betfair, we are co-founding an invitation only workshop for senior CTOs/IT strategic directors to discuss behind closed door this November about key things that needs to be done for the sector worldwide.

    I should have contacted you already, if not, please do get in touch with me.

    Friday, 23 May 2008

    Single Euro Payments Area [SEPA] & Payment services directive [PSD], Gambit on payment was a great success

    Wow, what a fantastic event we had earlier this week at the last Gambit public forum at Cass Business School.

    SEPA and PSDs were investigated in depth (yes, some part did go over my head!) but as ever, the conversations were really in depth, frank, and direct.

    I personally learnt a lot, and for those that were present, the audience all also enjoyed the
    sometimes "heated discussion".

    It seems a few actions were created as part of the gathering for the bank, acquirer and the gaming firms to share and be more transparent in the future. Great result!

    Please go to official Gambit website to see the full event report in the next week or so.

    Thursday, 24 April 2008

    Social networking within the enterprise | Information Age

    Social networking within the enterprise | Information Age

    gosh, time flies,

    didn't realise information age was purchased by Vitesse media, the acquisitive media group, great job Sara Williams.. challenge is how to make the business model works of the media/publishing sector, as barrier to entry is low comparatively.. and it would take years to become likes of forbes/economist.. I do like the bunch of people at Vitesse though, very friendly .. and so, I am supportive!

    I digress...

    this piece of journalism on social networking and its adoption/applicability for enterprise is very interesting read.

    User-Generated Content & Social Media

    User-Generated Content & Social Media

    very interesting report (not that I got time to read it all...) but key is that this will become a viable but trusted (from consumer's point of view, if their friends recommend certain products/services via these platforms)...

    yet, it is also outside of company's control of how they portray the products/services.

    saying that, success of i-mode is in fact the consumers that decided that they like it (as it was originally designed for business people!)...

    so, power to the people.. amen. ;)

    The Forbes Tax Misery Index - Forbes.com

    The Forbes Tax Misery Index - Forbes.com

    fascinating stuff

    no wonder HK/singapore/taiwan are used as hubs going to acess China..

    surprising that we don't see the 'tax heaven' juristitions/countries being listed or compared...

    good report and worth checking out that is for sure!

    Thursday, 27 March 2008

    PacificNet saddled with involuntary - TheDeal.com

    PacificNet saddled with involuntary - TheDeal.com

    This is indeed sad if this was the case, I was looking forward to meeting with Tony this week in Hong Kong.

    Without referring to this specific case, but I am happy to share some of the key points I raised at a separate meeting with another firm here (with positive cash flow and profitable business) regarding raising capital. I discussed the pros & cons of listing for a gaming market focused firm.

    Key points are:

    1.) Listing on the public market makes more sense for transparent and well understood sector (in terms of revenue/profit/KPI, and industry life cycle and multiples, plus ideally several cycles of boom and busts)

    2.) If access to capital is key (for exit of share holders or for acquisition purpose), one can easily access Equity/VCs for a well proven business no matter what sector it is in (although VCs/PEs that specialise in remote gaming are comparative few)

    3.) Non-relevant news and short-term jitters may adversely affect share price & stock holder confidence of a gaming firm (esp. remote focused) may not be ideal for firms that 'needed' a calm foundation to focus on growth. mostly due to the fact of sheer lack of well known/proven KPIs and industry life cycle data, especially for the remote gaming gambling sector (in some ways KPIs for offline casinos are different for different markets like Macau vs Las Vegas)
    4.) Gaming firms need three things in order for growth, namely: A.) trust and confidence in its brand, B.) reach to future/new customers and leverage this trust/encourage play, C.) differentiate and provide something special hopefully to retain/keep the clients. Therefore, unless the company is in a growth market/verticals within the developing phase of industry life cycle, the fluctuation of revenue/profit and lack of understanding of sector means Private Equity owners might be more patience to look for medium/long term growth (within reasons) if gaming firm has A-C covered above.
    5.) Fundamental business, gaming firms is unique, my analogy is that it is running a combined 'grocery store-bank'.. key is how it induce and keep the trust and confidence and how it can 'expand', see how Tesco or indeed Waitrose built up in the offline/online retail store in UK is a good example. Its a cash flow, profit margin play, therefore, how to be efficient in cost and how to increase top line growth is key.
    Therefore, my suggestion to the firm was that if they had a good market positioning and can 'scale' up and reach clients, means that its much better to grow as a private company than being 'listed', as the general market sentiment is now more focused on the high capital expenditure offline gaming gambling play, therefore, those people that invest in remote gaming firms are more speculative investors (unless it is for likes of 888.com holdings or PartyGaming main LSE market stocks, which even some pension funds would buy due to portfolio strategy).
    Consequently, the success/failure of the company could too much dependent on the 'mood' of the speculative investors, which means it does not generally provide a good foundation for these remote egaming firms for growth.. and it may become too much a management distraction.
    Of course, if there is no other ways of raising the cash, then sure, one might argue that these are the firms that one might/should avoid in the first place!??

    Wednesday, 26 March 2008

    University Study: Poker is a Game of Skill | Poker News

    University Study: Poker is a Game of Skill | Poker News

    this is interesting read... yes, the methodology is plausible, but we need much bigger sample.

    Surely, one can use the vast number of players information available across many poker rooms, one just need a bit of independent information of background/history of each player..

    we can then draw some useful insight by 'datamining' player information of the market.

    this insight can then be used as representative data to support/refute the poker as skillgame argument..

    Interesting indeed..

    Thursday, 13 March 2008

    Gov. Eliot Spitzer's Addiction - Forbes.com

    Gov. Eliot Spitzer's Addiction - Forbes.com

    Is the moral of the story is either

    1.) don't get famous/successful to avoid addiction to the super-dopamine high?

    2.) as one is planning or as one becoming successful, plan for some form of dopamine management process/course??

    seems to me this could be a business opportunity or university research project subject that can be explored.. or maybe even books to write about how to manage success! ;0)

    Monday, 10 March 2008

    TheFunded.com: The Resource for Entrepreneurs.

    TheFunded.com: The Resource for Entrepreneurs.

    pretty good resources for fellow enterpreneur

    However, there should be a rating for the enterpreneurs that put up comments themselves.. reason being that there are some people that are just not cut out to do it.. and sadly some of those might use this forum to 'avenge'...

    but if managed this should be a pretty good resource! I need to look at it in more details to be able to fuly judge!

    Wednesday, 5 March 2008

    Ziff Davis files for bankruptcy (Dealscape)

    Ziff Davis files for bankruptcy (Dealscape)

    gosh, maybe yet another over leveraged business going out of business!?

    really hope they can save PCMag, one of the most trusted PC magazine that run independent testing...

    fingers crossed...