Articles by Rudy Nadler-Nir

Click here for the latest articles on - Rudy’s Blog

·  GEML shows the way forward - The Big Change
Every now and then we have an opportunity to face real vision.
I talk raw vision here - the moment of pure chaotic creativity
that determines that, from this moment on, we will never look
at our world the same way again.

GEML is a great example of raw vision.

·  Voyager: Miles without hope and selective loyalty - IT-Web
Answering a question in the National Assembly early this month,
Public Enterprises Minister Jeff Radebe said that South African
Airways' liability for its Voyager Miles scheme totals around
21-billion miles. Not to worry, said the Minister. The scheme will
not put the profitability of SAA in danger because
there is a revenue management system in place This - almost nonchalant
- view of the national carrier's loyalty scheme is a
cause to worry.

·  The hell of it - The Big Change
A few weeks ago, I wrote about my fear that Microsoft sees its
future as closely and irrevocably attached to our personal data,
daily activities and - of course - our pockets. To say that Microsoft
ignored my article is as obvious as saying that the tree ignores
the little dog pissing on it. Microsoft is a force of nature --
the kind that makes any written word seem like a voiceless utterance
in the Courts of Chaos.

·  Monopoly and smelly butter: The broadband illusion - IT-Web
Gaming on broadband Internet and smelly wartime
butter share a similarity: they both offer a
viable solution while ignoring the legacy-packages
carried by their "products".

·  A radioactive sister in law - The Big Change
The world's largest software company pays billions
of advertising bucks to tell me it is situated as close
to me as my sister in law?! Shudder

·  Can CRM stop "cyberskiving"? - IT-Web
Customer relationship management (CRM) can help
provide a solution for those companies that lose
valuable man-hours to "cyberskiving".

·  WOZA and the death of the Content King - The Big Change
The relaunch of Woza as an ISP has proved to be a non-event.
You will not log on to the Woza portal because of the content, just as
you will not choose a hairdresser because of the free magazines
offered. The party's over, the King has left the building.

·  WOZA's Kevin Davie responds

·  Rudy Nadler-Nir's response

·  Eating Real Good - The Media Toolbox
People who suffer from a condition known as Orthorexia Nervosa
tend to take their health-food much too seriously.
Rudy Nadler-Nir knows people who suffer from technology-based
Orthorexia Nervosa - affecting their keyboard, screen, palmtop,
cellphone and all.

·  When AOL sneezes - The Media Toolbox
America Online, the blue-eyed darling of DotCom-dome, is shouldering some
of the responsibility for AOL Time Warner's huge loses. Rudy Nadler-Nir
wonders what these financial results predict for SA's media industry.

·  Let's ask Ananzi - The Media Toolbox
Johnnic e-Ventures just sold local search engine Ananzi to business
directories publisher Brabys. Why did they sell it? Why did they buy it in
the first place? Rudy Nadler-Nir clicks over to search Ananzi for answers.

·  Darwinian winners - The Big Change
A quick Webhistory quiz - what do the following sites:,,,,,,, and, have in common?
They're dead.

·  Txtin iz messin - The Media Toolbox
SMS is a dormant giant. Its current popularity notwithstanding, it is
obvious that users are trying to find daily, practical uses for SMS. Until
this is done, SMS will remain a fringe feature - albeit a popular one.

·  The compelling sum - The Big Change
I thought about Ray Bradbury's masterwork "Fahrenheit 451"
when I noticed what appears to be a host of new Internet Service
Providers (ISP) all of whom claim to be a viable alternative to the two
major players (namely M-Web and WorldOnline).

·  A billion monkeys Part one: The dual combination of information and access
- The Big Change

We've been monkeying-around about the Web with our keyboards for almost a
decade now and, to paraphrase the famous quote by Cyber-dweller Blair Houghton,
"Come to think of it, there are already a million monkeys on a million typewriters,
and the Web is nothing like Shakespeare."

·  A billion monkeys Part two: Molecular monkeys scouring inside - The Big Change
Molecular monkeys scouring inside our bodies will surely generate even
more information. Aside from the moral and legal questions this type of
information 'harvesting' and storage will surely raise, nanocomputers are
destined to turn economy on its head -- just like the printing press did.

·  Zeitgeist at a click - The Media Toolbox
Some time ago, Google came from nowhere to become the world's
most celebrated search engine. Awash with media superlatives and
users' words of praise, Google released its analysis of top search
items for the year 2001 under the title "Google Zeitgeist".

·  The Human Face of Mobile Technology - The Big Change
If I could ask for something really special for the year 2002,
says Rudy Nadler-Nir, it would be that various technologies
involved in human communication keep on losing their heavily
hyped position.

·  The business of CRM is business - The Big Change
So CRM seems to be moving to claim its rightful place in companies'
budget-basket. Question is - which budget pays for CRM?
This question came up during a a protracted discussion Rudy Nadler-Nir had
with a friend who is CEO at an advertising agency.

·  Absa and the philosopher's stone - The Media Toolbox
Absa's marketing failure does not lie in dumping 50 000 non-core free-'Net
users, but in the silent treatment of their own clients,
says Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  The Rhino, the Brother and TWoT - The Big Change
Nothing is more indicative of the way Content is heading than the final
folding of Africam, the success of Big Brother and the endless, mindless
drivel churned on the world's largest networks under the generic banner of
"The War on Terror" (hereafter TWoT).
By Rudy Nadler-Nr

·  Dialogue vs. coverage - ABSA's betting on the right horse - The Media Toolbox
Looking at the numbers behind ABSA bank's announcement that it
will take direct control over its free Internet services' database,
Rudy Nadler-Nir sees staggering CRM opportunities for the banking

·  Shouting at the echo - The Big Change
In the old days, says Rudy Nadler-Nir, people used to have "coming
out parties" where young, eligible females where introduced
to society. These "debutantes" went through what was,
essentially, a very refined cattle-market. And - if
all went well - they came out on the other side happily betrothed.
Current launch parties aren't much different

·  Backward-pointing rubber soles - The Media Toolbox
Rudy Nadler-Nir investigates pop-under Internet ads. Instead of opening up
in front of you, covering whatever it is you're doing, like a two-year old
in front of your TV screen, pop-unders open behind (or "under") your
active window.

·  Crying Viral - The Media Toolbox
Someone sent me an email (spam, of course) with a promise
to do wonders for my business, using "viral marketing".
I had a good chuckle as I thought of Kaycee Nicole, the
Klingerman virus and IBM's free PC offer, to mention but a few.

·  Evans, howzat?! - The Media Toolbox
While agents aren't new, sometimes they're news.
Recently, two separate U.S. covert-agencies ended
with egg on their faces when trying to protect the
secret identity of their (digital) agents: the US
National Security Agency (NSA) patented an agent
called "Semantic Forests", while the FBI's agent
was nicknamed "Carnivore". By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Why didn't they ask Evans? - The Media Toolbox
Digital agents have been around for a long time.
In many ways, they are the most underrated of
all modern technologies. Unlike the Web and
portable communication facilities, agents rely on
complex, sophisticated algorithms to create a
simple look-up interface. Rudy Nadler-Nir investigates

·  Big Words for bears of very little brain - The Big Change
Winnie the Pooh said "For I am a bear of very little brain, and big
words bother me." This is probably the most profound statement on the
issue of Big Words. By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Autumn delistings - The Media Toolbox
"Autumn is the bite of the harvest apple" said the poet - and we're talking
serious Fall here. M-Web and Metropolis (the all but trading-name of are two companies said to be delisting from the JSE. By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  The Tsunami of greed - The Big Change
Could Bill Gates or Steve Jobs finance their "i - ncubation"
years in today's post DotBomb economy? Probably not.
Pioneering, discovery and developments are expensive.
The most comparable model to the digital evolution is the
discovery of new territories. By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  DotCom - the survival of the fittest -
In the annals of digital history, the DotCom collapse is
nothing more than a hysterical Gold Rush, where greed
and desire for quick profits caused people to take leave
of their senses. By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Portals - quo clickis? -
Rudy Nadler-Nir peers into the dubious future of the world's Internet
portals, and finds a pending state of emergency. Their ad revenues are
plummeting, and the content sharing and sponsorship deals are scarce. Where
to from here?

·  Hand over FISP - ABSA's Internet gambit -
The lively discussion around ABSA's emergence as a Free Internet Service Provider
(FISP) is raging on. In the meantime, ABSA announced merrily that they are well
ahead of their forecast intake of new subscribers - raking-in over 30,000 in the
first few days. Obviously - their tune is catchy.
By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Late Disney portal suffers from abandonment anxiety -
Some time ago I wrote about the dumb sentences that followed many of the new
technologies in the last century. I received quite a few sentences via email in response
to my piece and, as a result, now have an impressive collection of dumb sentences and remarks.
By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Big Bird Gets It -
Whenever a new technology appears, scholarly myopia sets in as the new
technology is attacked while the virtues of the older technologies are extolled.
By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Prometheus' gift -
Not so long ago, companies paid celebrities to act as
role models for products, and the masses flocked to the shops.
But the communication age has turned this "role model" branding concept
on its head, writes Rudy Nadler-Nir.

·  No More Sacred Cows -
One of the best aspects of comedy is the exhaustive demolition of sacred
cows. Technology allows us to do even better. We can create a sacred
cow and demolish it in a single sweeping motion. Click. Click. Moo. Moo.
By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Sell-by date -
Some time ago in this column, I wrote Reconfiguring the Middleman,
where I used Stephen King as an example of the future interactive
link between supplier (the author) and customer (you and me). By
Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Digital Twinning -
Blessings aside, the digital revolution has managed to shake
some of the fundamentals of our being. Nowhere is the digital
landslide more apparent than in the most outrageous of all phenomena: Digital twinning

·  In 2001, the consumer dies -
The consumer - that specimen that absorb, ingest, gobble up and
swallow the products that the market feeds them without asking questions -
will die in 2001, says Rudy Nadler-Nir. And permission marketing will
increasingly become the way to reach its replacement, the customer - a more
discerning, more demanding and informed specimen.

·  The e-postman never rings -
Rudy Nadler-Nir looks at the unintended consequences our love affair with technology has brought upon us.

·  Let's Become List Dwellers -
One way or another, a major company wanting access to our Inbox has to buy that access. The rules of deployment are simple - they use permission-based communication and they're Seth Godin, they send unsolicited email and they're Slobodan Milosevic. By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  Stupid Statements -
The producer who thought the Beatles had no future, the IBM exec who rejected the idea of a PC on every desktop because he didn't believe that there was any place for more than five computers in the entire world, William Gates who didn't believe the Internet had a commercial future... It's easy to look back in history and see which statements turned out to be dumb. But can we detect a stupid, shortsighted statement while the future is still unknown and the jury is out? By Rudy Nadler-Nir

·  SPcide: the art of reverse-euthanasia -
Rudy Nadler-Nir believes that SPcide - the act of getting rid of a service provider - is the only legal form of euthanasia in our system. Only, in the marketing world, customers can perform reverse-euthanasia.

·  Reconfiguring the Middleman -
Remembers the term "disintermediation"? Current news headlines seem to indicate that, while not actually dead, the middleman is being reconfigured.

·  Using distant knowledge: part one, the Silkroad -
Rudy Nadler-Nir looks at human passion for going the extra mile - literally -
to acquire knowledge. The study of this passion is called
telepistemology - and it offers a few lessons to today's

·  Using distant knowledge: Part Two - Tell him I sent you -
Rudy Nadler-Nir shares seven rules of thumb for marketers to
bolster and grow the loyalty of their customers.

·  Down that rabbit-hole... -
How do women fare in the existing computer culture?
Rudy Nadler-Nir explores

·  Permission marketing - Part 1: Looking for the maitre d' -
Rudy Nadler-Nir explores the impact of an age in which it is not information
for marketers that is scarce, but the time to process and digest its meaning.

·  Permission marketing - Part 2: The feng shui of parking bays -
What's feng shui got to do with permission marketing?
Rudy Nadler-Nir explains.

·  Permission marketing - Part 3: Beware a Trojan bearing a horse -
Having made all the right moves, direct marketers remain no closer to a guaranteed long-standing relationship with customers. Rudy Nadler-Nir wonders why.