iPhone rising, Backfence falling, VC takedown, Glocer blogs about (nothing)

Here’s the first installment of our new iSIGHTINGS notes on trends and “things” we’ve spotted.

iPhone. We all worked the scenarios for news, entertainment and info on cell phones more than a decade ago. Apple’s device is worthy of the thinking. Finally a business for mobile content?

First look: Nokia forges ahead with online media labs and  ideas from mobile users. Join the experiment at Nokia Trends Lab, currently in Beta.

Brian Storm’s MediaStorm sets a standard for well-designed, multi-media storytelling.  Quality journalism isn’t dead; it now comes from unexpected places.

Backfence bows out with a whimper, not a bang. We love user-generated
content, but  no one wants another bad Metro section. Learn, innovate. Founder Mark Potts  shared  some of his lessons learned – but not all. We want to know about the ugly stuff  – err, lousy execution – that he and the investors don’t want to discuss in public. We have no interest in any of the Backfence-inspired obituaries for hyperlocal business models. They are wrong and tedious.

Let’s bury the derivative myth once and for all: 75% of users 18 to 25 are reading or writing user-generated content. Few are passive participants. Active users of UGC haven’t abandoned off-line media for online, but they are learning to balance the two. There’s something to this We Mediathing.

HanaZuki is a boutique, a creative studio, and a collaboration without boundaries. Is it work? Or play? Yes.

VCs are all atwitter over Fred Wilson’s alway-on blog and the Jason Calacanis takedown of Jeremy Liew over the VC rules of discretion.
Online video is such a huge trend that’s it’s hard to keep track. Video Toolboxaggregates more than 150 video sharing sites to manage video
mixers, mashups, converters and more.

Reuters CEO Tom Glocer blogs the annual Allen & Co. media moguls meeting in Sun Valley, where he writes that he can’t tell us anything because the meetings are off the record. Thanks, Tom.

Young, connected activists will rock the vote and have an unpreceented
impact on the U.S. presidential campagin and election. Look for our report this fall.

Can your daddy Facebook? Big bloggers like Jeff Jarvis, corporate captains and a leading foundation have launched pages. Reminds us of the Ana Marie Cox line about MSM trying to blog:  it’s like watching your parents try to dance – awkward and off time. Not kewl. Time for the Facebook faithful to Xanga outta there. Meanwhile, Socialtext founder Ross Mayfield recently used LinkedIn to announce he’s looking for someone to take over as CEO. Ross, that’s sooo 2006 …

Assume the Postion, Robert Wuhl’s history lesson on HBO, makes a comedic connection between pop culture, fact-and-myth, and learning that entertains. Learn from this major mashup. HBO’s Flight of the Conchords also gets it right with cultural insights, music and laugher.

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