Friday, March 16, 2007

I'm Orf

As I will be taking a trip back to the UK from next week onwards and have a couple of other blogs projects on the go I have decided to give this one a rest till i get back. Thanks for reading!

Back in Cape Town in June!

Friday, January 19, 2007

shopping 2.0

This from the ever fabulous fashion.psfk:

Interactive services firm IconNicholson has created a new type of in-store experience that combines social networking and shopping, known as Social Retailing.
Demonstrated at the National Retail Federation conference earlier this week, the Social Retailing technology uses a three-paneled "magic mirror" in-store that can send photos or videos of shoppers in outfit options to their MySpace page or to friend's emails and mobiles for instant opinions. Friends 'yes' or 'no' votes are then visible on the mirror itself. The interactive technology also allows customers to see what others have purchased, view similar options that are not in stock in the store, check out using MasterCard SecureCode and have their orders delivered to their home.

Monday, December 18, 2006

FNB need to go back to CRM school

There have been a couple of contenders for my "schmuck of the day" award but today's goes to First National Bank. For a giggle I thought rather than face a trek over to one of their branches i'd try out there option to email a question about my account. I have to admit I had few illusions of a coherent response. This is what happened: today they finally get back to me (I sent the request early last week) with this:

"Dear Daniel
Thank you for sending your email to FNB. I do apologise for the delay in responding to your request. Your query was sent to First Online in error and they are experiencing a hugh a backlog.
Please contact your FNB branch and a consultant will be able to assist you."

Hugh's backlog aside what's the frickin point of online assistance if its going to direct you to a branch..?

Someone is missing the point of this whole internet thingie over at FNB towers... are they head hunting Home Affairs staff or sumthin. Schmucks!

Merry xmas.

"You" are the person of the year

Via the beeb:

Ever wondered what you had in common with Hitler and Ayatollah Khomeini? You've all won the Time magazine's person of the year award.

"You" have been named as Time magazine's Person of the Year for the growth and influence of user-generated content on the internet. The US magazine praised the public for "seizing the reins of the global media" and filling the web's virtual world. Microsoft founder Bill Gates, his wife Melinda and rock star Bono won the accolade last year and recent winners also include President George W Bush in 2004, and "The American Soldier" in 2003.

The magazine said naming a collectivity rather than an individual reflected the way the internet was shifting the balance of power within the media through blogs, videos and social networks.
Time cited websites such as YouTube, Facebook, MySpace and Wikipedia, which allow users to interact with the web by uploading and publishing their own comments, videos, pictures and links.
"It's about the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes," Time magazine's Lev Grossman writes.
Time praised the tool that made such broad collaboration possible - the web. "It's a tool for bringing together the small contributions of millions of people and making them matter," Mr Grossman said. Previous winners have often sparked controversy - including Adolf Hitler in 1938 and, in 1979, Iran's Ayatollah Khomeini."

Cape Town pipe dreams

IOL technology tease us with the following story:

"Cape Town residents can expect improved service delivery and cheaper access to Internet and telephone services by 2010 because the city plans to spend a whopping R400-million on its own broadband network.
By so doing, it will avoid huge costs to monopoly telecommunications provider Telkom. It will also be able to earn money off its own network by offering these services to the private sector.
It could save as much as R40-million in the first year in telecommunications costs to Telkom and cellphone providers while earning more than R12-million in its first two years of operation by selling access to its network.
The city spends more than R100-million a year on telecommunications services - 70 percent of it for voice and data communications.
Chairman of the council's portfolio committee on corporate services Stuart Pringle says that at least R30-million is spent on internal calls alone.
The city council unanimously agreed last Thursday, December 7, that, despite the huge costs, it would be well worth the benefits to residents. The city would be able to read water meters remotely, determine when a street light is about to fail, make patient information accessible in any clinic and process service delivery requests on behalf of other departments.
The city would be able to connect more than 220 public facilities including libraries, clinics and administrative buildings. Its benefits for the 2010 soccer World Cup would also be extensive.
The city will enter an initial planning phase, expected to cost R18-million, next month."

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Prada Signs Up for Mobile Phone with LG Electronics

via (FWD)

"Prada has signed an agreement with Korean giant LG Electronics to develop an iconic mobile phone. The Italian brand is planning an advanced touch interface, which eliminates the conventional keypad, in a novel co-branding exercise. Prada’s goal is to “combine high-end technology with avant-garde design offering the best in both style and performance,” the Italian house said in a release.

Consumers will first be able to get their hands on the Prada phone in early 2007, with distribution rolling out across in Europe through Italy, UK, France, and Germany, followed by countries in Asia such as Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Singapore. Ironically, the Korean version won’t launch until the second quarter of 2007."

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Graffiti cleans up its act

Next time you see a teenager armed with a sponge and a bottle of washing up liquid he is probably up to no good...

via PSFK:

"Over the past few months, we've picked up on several artists engaging in ‘reverse graffiti.’ Also known as ‘clean tagging’ or ‘grime writing,’ the artist simply cleans off the dirt and soot from a wall to make the original surface stand out. This method has also been implemented on walls covered with paper flyers, where the intended word or image is scraped off.
British artist Paul Curtis has pushed this new style into the public eye and brings up a great point regarding the seemingly universal distain for street art:
Cleaning without a permit? “Once you do this,” he says, “you make people confront whether or not they like people cleaning walls or if they really have a problem with personal expression.”
New York Times: Reverse Graffiti

Schleb stink

This from Fashion Wire Daily, a worrying new(ish) trend of dubious global celebs putting out a fragrance. I mean do you really want to smell like Shania (frickin) Twain?!?! I love Gwen Steffani, as any sane human being must. I mean to get away with what she does in her late thirties is a total coup (you'll have to watch her recent videos). Not sure i'll be wearing Gwen next fall myself though but she'll make a killing (no doubt). I'll hold out for the Eagles of Death Metal to make one maybe.

"Yesterday Coty Inc. announced a new global licensing agreement with punk pop princess/designer, Gwen Stefani, to launch a line of fragrances for her fashion brand, L.A.M.B. The first fragrance, which has yet to be named, is slated to debut in Fall 2007. Coty, who has licensing deals with other singers like Jennifer Lopez, Celine Dion, David and Victoria Beckham and Shania Twain, has also brought a taste of many designer names to the masses in affordable fragrance form. Coty's designer fragrance licenses include Calvin Klein, Cerruti, Chloé, Jil Sander, JOOP!, Kenneth Cole, Marc Jacobs, Pierre Cardin, Vera Wang and Vivienne Westwood. Coty said they plan to work closely with Stefani to develop every aspect of the fragrance – from the packaging to the ingredients in the scent. "

Friday, December 08, 2006

Fashion predictions for 2007

Curious as to what you'll be wearing next year? According to Infomat it's gonna be: gothy, houndstooth mixed with plaid and block wallpaper prints sprinkled with 50's Jackie O style and starlet frocks. Glad I could clear that up for you. Check their predictions in more detail here. I have it on good authority from a more local source that lederhosen maybe back in a big way. No really.

Fashion Baggage

"Fashion baggage", hmm might make a great title for my long planned, semi-fictional, account of working in fashion pr. Anyway this is really about a link-up between dull suitcase brand Samsonite and brit designer Matthew Williamson. I'm a sucker for this kind of marketing idea myself. (this via coolhunting):

Launched earlier this year, the limited edition version of the Signat Attaché Case, a collaboration between Samsonite Black Label and British fashion designer Matthew Williamson, is finally available online just in time for gift giving. Also re-released in orange, yellow and pink (see images here), the effort celebrates Samsonite's classic 1960's Signat Attaché Case. For the limited edition version, Williamson accented the cream exterior with a silver and flourescent pink leather sleeve for over the shoulder carrying. The interiors follow the same color scheme mixing pastel colors with fluorescent pink for contrast and combines two prints, one floral and one geometric. Both patterns were designed by Williamson and were featured in his Fall/Winter 06/07 apparel collection. Featuring an organized divider, an interior cosmetics pouch and a key charm, the limited edition bags (only 250 will be sold) are available online from Samsonite for $360.

Thursday, December 07, 2006

Dazed online

Speaking of hipster magazines. Also pleased to see Dazed & Confused is still around. What's more they've embraced the innernet revolution and done an online version. Lots of stuff to look at, listen to and feel hip about. Listening to their playlist right now. Not the Gulag Orkestar by any stretch but it'll get me through my morning email browse.

CDs are dead. Official!*

Great, I no longer need to jostle with teenagers clutching nu-metal cds in the Musica Megastore. Instead I can go and get a digital download from Rough Trade (awesome London record store) or Juno. I mean its not like I can get Beruit's wonderful Gulag Orkestar in the V&A. SA music stores with pathetically outdated and unimaginative stock take note (that's all of you) your days are numbered. Word!

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Congo fashion gangs!

Lots of US papers (and a couple of SA ones) seem to have picked up the story on Congolese fashionistas obsessing over luxury labels. Crazy huh, you'd think with having Ebola, being attacked by killer Giraffes, all the volcano's and tribal warfare they'd have time to go shopping. Apparently it's not just as simple as pulling on a pair of Gucci loafers you have to belong to a "sape" gang or something and have fashion face offs with rival gangs. "It's Zoolander meets West Side Story, where the gangs sport labels but not knives," says the breathless Houston chronicle. Right.

Local hipster mag still around!

The new One Small Seed is out and looks amazing. Personally I believe you can't call yourself a country unless you have your very own fashionista hipster mag. They've also managed to last a year - which in magazine years is about, like, 80s years or something. Still I think we can't be satisfied till we get a local Vice magazine... which is officially* the best mag in the whole frickin world. If New Zealand can have one I don't see why we can't dammit.

*according to us

What yanks want from magazine sites

From PSFK, latest US stats on what users want from magazine sites. No SA stats on the subject that I can find as yet.

Monday, December 04, 2006

Speaking of Japanese kids...

QR Codes: Appearing as a jumble of black and white squares similar to a barcode, QR codes for Web addresses are now found everywhere in Japan. Users scan the codes with mobile phones’ infrared data transfer beams to connect to the site through the phone’s internal browser. Originally found on street corners where the codes served as an entertainment guide for the respective area linking users to everything from reviews of local restaurants to listings for movies, mosaics can now be found everywhere from magazines and posters to stickers and packaging and link to a variety of topics such as horoscopes, weather, and fashion news.

Back from Myspace re-hab

Had to go spend a couple of days away from the world to get over a myspace addiction. After some early morning ice baths and penguin-stroking therapy I think I'm there. In the end it may have been Dr Schwartz telling me that I was probably the oldest person on the damn thing and I should pull myself together, what finally broke it's evil spell. Now I see it for the devil cult it is - warn your children! Gonna hang out with people my own age on Blogger in future. By Paris, like Lindsay Lohan says, you're actually just a cheap drunken lush and not a great friend after-all (she didn't reply to one damn comment). ps: one final thought - you realise it is actually someone's job to manage her myspace site! In fact its probably a whole team of perfectly dressed japanese girls in a bunker somewhere.

Thursday, November 23, 2006

South Africans enjoy getting social

Online ad agency Acceleration point out what a great opportunity social networking sites are for SA brands as ads can be geo-targetted (sounds kind of James Bondish... cool). Good point. Personally I love Myspace. It's like starting school all over again and having a whole playground of people to make friends with. Of course, as in the playground, you can also lose friends damn quickly (as I discovered when on day two I deleted all my friends by accident...oops). The only South African's however so far that have joined my online posse are the Real Estate Agents. Thanks for the add*. Also worth visiting is Mika (have been singing Take It Easy ever since I heard it - listen I frickin dare you to disagree) and the alter-ego of one of my Hoxtonite friends Bad Lover (check the splendid video out).
*Myspace speak, get with it

Sunday, November 19, 2006


ShowStudio is the blog/online gallery/digital work book of UK based fashion photographer/visionary Nick Knight. Worth popping in to check out the mix of leftfield and high fashion pics and projects if you get a spare moment... hec it's Monday what else you gonna do?

Adopt An African

It's entirely possible I had too much time on my hands this weekend... Anyhow I decided to create a site for locals to put themselves up for adoption by global mega stars: ADOPT AN AFRICAN. If you would like to take part email at dan (at) with a pic and answers to the standard questions (found on the site). Please don't tell Madonna i'm actually from Hertfordshire...