Posts Filed Under wine 2.0

Taking A VinPass? (Social Gaming Goes Vino)

Vinted on May 13, 2011 binned in wine 2.0

Social gaming – driven in part by the ubiquity of social networks (do I really need to dredge up the if-facebook-was-a-country-it-would-make-your-country-look-like-chump-change stats?) and (I strongly suspect) our natural human competitive instincts now that hunting and killing are generally frowned-upon – has seen a usage curve that by any measure can be safely said to have exploded off the charts.

Here’s a real chump-change-making stat for you: Over fifty million people in the U.S. are playing along with social gaming – and that’s a stale stat from last year.

So it was only a matter of time, I suppose, before the gaming trend caught up to the world of wine, despite the world of wine being something like six years behind most every other on-line trend.

That feeling of inevitability was one of the major reasons why I decided to jump on the social gaming board with VinPass, billed as the first cross-platform social game for the wine industry, which launched just this week

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Born Digital, Buried In Content (The 2010 Born Digital Wine Awards)

Vinted on May 9, 2011 binned in about 1winedude blog, wine 2.0, wine blogging

The good news for wine lovers is that there’s a ton of wine-related content on the ‘global interwebs,’ much of it available for free (because content is a commodity now, people).  The bad news is, not all of that content is reading that would appeal to a wider audience (wider than the friends and family of many of those writing the content, that is) – that’s not at all meant as a dig at the vast majority of wine blogs that act as personal journals chronicling passionate consumers’ journeys into the amazing world of wine; it’s just the truth in terms of how much of that content is presented and targeted (trust me, not too many people would want to read my personal journals… but the point is that a small group of people close to me might).

The better news is that, for those looking for the most surfable waves among the vast oceans of on-line wine content, the judges for the 2010 Born Digital Wine Awards have done a great job of vetting some superb individual pieces of that content for you. You can thank them later (I recommend flowers, because those people get a ton of wine already).

The Born Digital Awards program is brainchild of Gabriella and Ryan Opaz along with Robert McIntosh, who together have started building up an impressive set of wine-related media ventures in Europe.  The idea was to build on the success of the Wine Blog Awards in highlighting outstanding wine-related websites, but with a Pulitzer-style twist: focusing on individual pieces of content (video and writing), and awarding actual cash to the winners.  I don’t know anything about the judging process itself beyond what’s already been published at, but I do know that the list of judges contains some pretty amazing wine writing talent.

The finalists in each of the award categories were published last week, and the winners will be announced on May 18th at 5:30 PM ET, streamed live from the London International Wine Fair.  I’m humbled to be among the short-listed finalists (go ahead… make the height jokes… you jerks…), but that’s not why I’m talking about the awards here.  I’m talking about the awards because I wanted to post the entire list of links to the short-listed finalists below (after the jump) – there’s just some great f*cking content in the list, and if you’re into wine it’s a treasure-trove of cool-ass shiz to read.

WARNING: You may get tired of seeing Blake Gray’s and Alder Yarrow’s names in the list, as they’re each finalists for something like 900 of the categories (ok… two…).  In all seriousness, those guys are friends of mine (as are several of the other finalists, actually) and I’m happy to see their stellar writing included in the list (and even happier to be included in any list with those guys).

Now get reading (and watching)… and enjoy!…

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Through A (Wine) Glass, Not-So-Darkly: Vintank’s Predictions For The Future Of Wine And Tech In 2011

Vinted on March 9, 2011 binned in going pro, wine 2.0

Vintank is a wine and tech industry think tank group based in downtown Napa, full of folks for whom I hold a great deal of respect (so much so that when they asked me to partner with them on trying out the concept of using badges for wine reviews, I jumped at the chance).

As think tanks do, they periodically release reports on the industry, for the most part in Vintank’s case concentrating on the intersections of wine and technology (predominantly on-line and social media tech).  Their latest report, titled To-And-Fro, was recently released and provides synopses of their 2010 work and the major developments in the on-line wine world over the last year.  Most interestingly, however, is that To-And-Fro also makes some bold predictions about what we’ll see in 2011 in the culminations of wine and tech. If you’re interested in the wine biz, it’s well worth a read (and the 150+ slides in this deck go by quickly), and you’ll find it embedded below after the jump.

But I should note that I had a strange, nagging ennui when reading To-And-Fro. It’s not that I think the predictions espoused in the report are incorrect (I agree with nearly all of them), it’s just that I can’t shake the feeling that the report is too optimistic.  If To-And-Fro has a flaw, it’s its pesky optimism: it seems to assume that the wine biz operates rationally and does so at the speed of normal businesses that have an on-line component – neither of which I’ve found to be true…

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