Kara Swisher

Recent Posts by Kara Swisher

Facebook Communications Kingpin Joins Pixazza as Strategic Adviser and Board Observer

Yesterday, BoomTown posted a video interview with Pixazza CEO Bob Lisbonne about the photo tagging service that has nicknamed itself “AdSense for images.”

Now, the Mountain View, CA, start-up has added someone who might know a thing or two about it. Former Googler Elliot Schrage–who is now Facebook’s global communications, marketing and public policy head–is joining Pixazza’s board as a strategic adviser and observer.

Before joining both the Silicon Valley search giant and social networking powerhouse, Schrage had another thing in common with Pixazza–he also worked at retail behemoth The Gap, one of the companies that uses Pixazza’s technology tools.

“I’m impressed by Bob, Jim and the Pixazza team and delighted to have the chance to work with them,” said Schrage in an email to me.

The Pixazza network now reaches about 85 million unique visitors per month, according to Quantcast.

Essentially, the company lets publishers match and link images of products or places with its network of advertisers, via a single line of code.

When users on that site mouse over the photos, they get rich information about pricing and more, as well as a clickable way to purchase the items.

Here is Lisbonne’s blog post on the Schrage appointment, as well as the video of the interview I did with him recently:

Pixazza Is Now Friends with Elliot Schrage

One of many favorite lines I remember from Netscape’s CEO Jim Barksdale was “smart isn’t what you know, but how fast you learn.” The history of Silicon Valley demonstrates the wisdom of that adage when you consider that no company starts life with perfect knowledge; they all experiment, discover, and iterate rapidly. The best startups not only harness the knowledge of their employees, but look to their investors, advisors, and supporters as well.

Today, we feel particularly fortunate to welcome someone new to the Pixazza fold, a world class executive responsible for helping to expand the reach of two of the Internet’s premier companies. Elliot Schrage has agreed to join our board as a strategic advisor and observer.

Elliot’s current role as vice president of global communications, marketing and public policy at Facebook, coupled with his previous experience as vice president of communications and public affairs at Google, make him an ideal resource as we work to change the way consumers interact with images on the Internet. In an auspicious coincidence, Elliot previously served as the senior vice president of global affairs at The Gap–one of Pixazza’s long time advertisers.

Pixazza is pioneering the use of images as a new canvas for delivering to consumers relevant information, ecommerce, and advertising. We look forward to collaborating with and learning from our new “friend” Elliot.


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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus