Davide Bartolucci | founder & CEO, SHADO | Full Digital, no iron.

Dr. Drew Ordon’s creativity, a surreal pop-delirium.

Well, fantastic, during the return flight from the US, despite the struggle with uncomfortable airline logo-stamped cushion and the tiny space for my legs, I can’t stop thinking about the reassuring face of Dr. Drew Orden.

Hulu wasn’t my only media addiction on my American trip, but there was also a huge doze of regular TV, especially CBS, that reassuring monolith, which despite the digital revolution, has been around since 1927.

And it was while enjoying that special “spectacle of numerous commercials punctured by the occasional show” of American broadcasting, that I discovered “The Doctors”, an incredible programme, one of those things that makes me think that over there they really are beyond all limits.

They are presented as “America’s medical dream team” and they stage a popular show based on simple medical advice, interviews and investigations sometimes leading to melodrama, but ever-attentive to keeping the connotation of the show.

There are 4 of them, straight from a medical textbook, they are scientifically placed to represent everything necessary and what you might expect in a moment of need.

You have Dr. Sears, the reassuring stethoscope-clad paediatrician who makes us want to have kids just so we can have them treated by him; Dr. Lisa Masterson, gynaecologist and obstetrician, black but not too dark, Obama-style, and then there’s the young leader of the pack, Dr. Stork, who, judging from his toned physique could easily hail straight from “300″ or “Troy”, and whose charisma makes him the new George Clooney; he who in an emergency dash makes you think that, after all, if you have to die, isn’t it better to do so surrounded by hunks?

And my favourite, Dr. Drew Ordon, the Beverly Hills plastic surgeon, a 21st century artist who bestows joy on his patients and moments of hope and dreams on his viewers.

I love the packaging of this programme, the role of the audience both on TV and online, when they speak with the show characters via their blogs, and I especially love the surreal pop-delirium that it represents.

And so I met the four doctors one morning in New York, while I’m doing up my shoes with the TV on in the background and they are exchanging enlightened opinions in a feature on embarrassing problems that you would never tell anyone (but can do so intimately to CBS).

It is here that you reveal yourself, aristocratic Dr. Drew Ordon, you take the mic, look straight into the camera and, no longer able to hide it, you smile slightly because, yes, you really are speaking about… diarrhoea.

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This entry was written by dbartolucci, posted on November 24, 2009 at 4:37 am, filed under Branded content and tagged , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

The talents of these times

We have survived 10 coast-to-coast days in the US, a tour de force made up of business meetings, chatting with multidisciplinary creative people and immersion in places where almost anything can be “tagged” as “entertainment”.

Today more than ever, I am convinced that first defining and then knowing how to recognize talent, is a real process that has to impose a model of rationality on instinct.

When we launched CIRKUS (an online competition for new Internet TV formats) we were aware that a priceless value travels on the net, made up of bits of intuition, sometimes it is creativity, sometimes the simple necessity to communicate, but it is something other than what we already know about contribution, sharing and collaboration.

All this intellectual worth becomes valuable only when organized and helped to emerge.

I am more and more convinced that television and entertainment will find equilibrium on the net only after a whole chain is able to cope with the technological and social evolution in progress.

After 5 months of competition, in just a few days we will announced the 10 winning projects, an exciting selection and a journey that allowed us to meet the authors in their contexts.

On this trip, first virtual then physical, we haven’t just discovered value, from Hollywood to New York it is not things that amaze us, but people capable of reading these times through the right filters. Whoever has had something to do with a place of creativity knows how much an author, perhaps understandably so, risks in letting the feeling of authorship prevail over the decisive choices, so that the right idea can triumph.

On this trip between different social and professional walks of life, we have touched a market where people constantly put themselves at stake, they have no fear of daring and, above all, they put their ideas first, even before themselves.

When we talk about opportunity, in the US, we are talking about this attitude, this fantastic form of constructive trust which, together, we will do our utmost to transform into success.

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This entry was written by dbartolucci, posted on November 19, 2009 at 11:57 pm, filed under Social Entertainment and tagged , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

Between compulsive hulu-ing and “real Americans”

These days I am in the middle of a multicoloured trip.

Just putting the names San Francisco, Las Vegas, Los Angeles and New York in the same sentence is enough to start your head spinning, never mind what happens in the eyes of the hungry explorer who physically covers the distance between these legendary points.

Finally free from those barriers that prevent its use in Italy (a geographic restriction limits the content distribution to the USA), I’ve been devouring HULU every night, gorging on comedies, documentaries and my favourite TV series like 30ROCK with Alec Baldwin in top form…

What Ries and I are looking for is a border, whatever defines the languages of tomorrow’s TV, the rhythms and the words of an entertainment that still hasn’t come into the spotlight.
We are in the US and it is always here, inexorably, that the border of one market becomes the border of all markets.

San Francisco tells us how Silicon Valley’s importance is spreading, changing into a kind of Hollywood business metronome: every innovation changes the paradigms of fruition and content sharing. Software and platforms have also become structures for new narrations.

And then we have a bag of opinions of those who believe in new forms of distribution (Marc Whitten of Xbox, Reed Hastings of NETFLIX and Avner Ronen of Boxee), and surprise protagonists like Gary Cohen, CEO of Redbox, the American company that specialises in selling DVDs, to demonstrate how simplicity and low cost can, even in this stage of the market, re-invent business like renting physical support.

It is exactly this kind of encounter that makes me think just how much business meetings with tables heaped with blazing iPhones buzzing with applications (often bought to while away time waiting), are just one piece of the future of this market.

Yes, because there are millions of people who still have to be ushered into the digital era, who will need time before they chuck away their DVD player or start trusting the sharing of their opinions with the frenetic “status” of a social network.

Maybe more than ever in this transition phase, for those who have chosen to work in digital entertainment and create new scenarios, the time has come to remember once again that you must, above all, spot people’s emotions and respond to this age-old need, because exactly these things dictate popularity and make the business models work.

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This entry was written by dbartolucci, posted on at 2:54 am, filed under Mobility and tagged , , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.

The best beginning

Ok, here we go, in black & white, exactly the opposite of today’s TV, something that we can no longer define as a magic box because it is the very disappearance of its physical limits that people are talking about more and more nowadays.

They are talking about it today in San Francisco, on New Tee Vee Live ’09, where the theme is “The Year of TV Everywhere“.

While I shake off the ever-pleasant Californian jet lag, I am getting ready for a shot of adrenaline which these contexts, like few others, can inject. 

I was here last year too, and all in all, not long has passed since the previous edition though enough to change more than just details…

We were fascinated by Anthony E. Zuiker’s speech, bursting with instinct and clear vision. In these months he has managed to convey his extraordinary popularity (with CSI) into one of the most innovative products to appear on the market: LEVEL26;

Lucas Cruikshank, aka FRED, was presented as an Internet star, a freak 2.0, capable of attracting around 30 million hits on YouTube. Fred’s audience has more than doubled but he has learned to gain from it and Hollywood is about to dedicate a feature film to him;

Greg Goodfried of EQAL related how a format and communities have really started to become one single thing, because a few months later he launched new concept shows able to extend the popularity of TV channels (CBS with Harper’s Globe), celebrities (Paula Deen with Get Cookin’) and publishers (Dutton/Penguin Group with LEVEL 26);

In the studio together with Tommaso Tessarolo of Current TV, and then walking around the magnificent city metabolizing the barriers of trans-media, with every step we were more convinced that the future is first intuited (as we were doing) and then guided with patience, because we were speaking about television, entertainment, pop culture.

Thus comparing that moment with today I like to think about the road we have travelled, launching a brave brand new format (FRAMMENTI, created by SHADO and LOG607, which in those very days we were dreaming about putting on Current Italia), with CIRKUS recruiting great new TV ideas and would-be “multi-platform celebrities”, but, most of all, starting to understand with numbers and real-life experiences (together with the staff) just how much the balance between what the public likes and what it can actually take counts. Transforming the new spaces that digital media can create into new “prime time slots” is not an easy undertaking, and certainly not an instant process.

Today seems like the right moment to inaugurate these pages and narrate the story of a voyage, to note significant stimuli in a scenario where know-how has a more determining role than ever.

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This entry was written by dbartolucci, posted on November 12, 2009 at 4:10 am, filed under Viral and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Leave a comment or view the discussion at the permalink.