Peter Kafka

Recent Posts by Peter Kafka

What Happened at South By Southwest? A Google Guy Explains.

kevin-marksConfession: A whole lot of what happens at South By Southwest is above and beyond the capacity of your humble correspondent to understand or explain.

Luckily, we have a professional willing to interpret the goings-on, free of charge. Meet Kevin Marks, whose business card describes him as “developer advocate” at Google (GOOG).

Marks, who has previously put in time at Apple (AAPL) and Technorati as an engineer, now has a job that seems to involve being an, um, advocate on behalf of his employer, specifically for its OpenSocial program. I think of OpenSocial as the “everyone but Facebook” social-network alliance, and Marks didn’t disabuse of me that notion in our chat on Sunday.

But he did add some layers of nuance, and he was game when I asked him to tell me what the theme of the conference has been so far. In a word: Twitter.

The longer version is here:

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The problem with the Billionaire Savior phase of the newspaper collapse has always been that billionaires don’t tend to like the kind of authority-questioning journalism that upsets the status quo.

— Ryan Chittum, writing in the Columbia Journalism Review about the promise of Pierre Omidyar’s new media venture with Glenn Greenwald