This site showcases the (mostly) digital work of Andrew DiFiore from both Virtual Arts Studios and answerYES Interactive as well as random thoughts and experimental projects too volatile to be contained anywhere else.

 
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    Chill, The Next Cool Thing

    Chill is like the Hulu’s cooler little brother. But more than just catchup TV, Chill supports just about any video source from YouTube to ESPN.

    Content can be high-def TV shows (supplied by premium content partners like Hulu) to videos taken from your iPhone.

    The site has a sexy Pinterest-like grid layout with Turntable-like social viewing integration, including Path-like emoticons and a Facebook Timeline-like profile covers.

    You sign up using Facebook Connect. Once in, you can start a Chill Lounge or hang out in an existing Lounge (Lounges are like DJ Rooms in Turntable). Chill users can create a livestream Lounge simply by selecting the Live Video Stream option available in the Chill Lounge creation flow. The feature currently supports Ustream, Justin.tv, Livestream, YouTube Live, and Twitch.tv.

    Chill was founded by Brian Norgard and Daniel Gould less than year ago and as of last week has raised $8 million in Series A funding from Kleiner Perkins Caufield & ByersRedpoint VenturesAtlas VenturePaul KedroskyScience MediaWilliam Morris Endeavor, 500 Startups, Troy Carter, Mike Jones, Chris Sacca’s Lowercase Capital, and Michael Arrington’s CrunchFund. As of this post, Chill claims to have 19 million members.

    It has been an obvious feature long time coming: Scheduled Posts. Finally, you can do inside Facebook what third-party tools like HootSuite and TweetDeck have done for years. That is, if you can find the feature.

    Rolled out along with page security (admins can now assign roles), Facebook decided to make the scheduler a little hard to find.

    Maybe it is Facebook’s aggressive development cycle but I always get the feeling that half the features are afterthoughts, retrofitted into an architecture designed for something else.

    Now that Facebook is a public company, I imagine the pressure to appeal to advertisers and businesses is going to be greater. A good example is the new Promoted Post which allow brands to set a nominal budget for “sponsored” posts to appear within news feeds (kinda like Twitter’s Promoted Tweet feature).

    Not to worry, I’m sure the design team at Menlo Park will get around to fixing the usability issues… if the marketing team could stop telling the development team to skip the QA team.

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    Okay, Keenan Cahill’s lip-syncing videos are just a little freaky but that’s why so many people watch them… and there is no arguing with success. Over 50 million views of Katy Perry’s “Teenage Dream” (since August of 2010) has made BeenerKeeKee19952 not only an instant YouTube sensation but a hot viral commodity.

    Now with over 170 videos, the success is surreal.

    From the likes of Sean Kingston and 50 Cent to the casts of Glee and Nickelodeon’s Victorious, the teenager with MSP (a rare genetic disorder that affects physical and mental development) has stood next to more celebrities than Ryan Seacrest. He has even performed “Go NY Go” with Landry Fields and Andy Rautins of New York Knicks (along with the NY Knicks Cheerleaders).

    He has appeared on Chelsea Handler’s show Chelsea Lately, helped Jennifer Aniston go “viral” for Smartwater, and has his own Web series called Keenan’s Crush featuring the always sexy Jessica Uberuaga. And the endorsement deals keep rolling in… from Julianne Hough promoting her Footloose remake to Axe body spray to Me Undies (there is just nothing wrong with women dancing in their underwear).

    This is the power of the Web, unfettered, dreams can soar. Anyone can be a star. And if you’re an astute marketer paying attention to social media trends, get ready to hitch your wagon to the next Keenan Cahill and sit back (or should I say lean forward).

    Facebook Timeline for Brands Arrive

    As expected, Facebook officially rolled out the Timeline feature for brand pages yesterday at their Facebook Marketing Conference. There will be plenty of blogging over the next few weeks as companies flesh out their histories online. With the ability to go back 100 years, that’s a whole lot of fleshing. Some brands already fleshed out include Ford, Coca-Cola, Starbucks, and Old Spice. Check them out for inspiration for your own brand and then head over to Mashable for Facebook Timeline for Brands: The Complete Guide.

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    The first Facebook Marketer Conference will be held in NYC on February 29, 2012, but it is by invitation only. However, if your invite got lost in the mail, you can still catch some of the event real-time on the fMC website, including key presentations from Facebook’s global marketing solution team (i.e. Sheryl Sandberg, Chris Cox, and David Fischer).

    One of the hot features to be unveiled at the conference is Facebook Timeline for Brands. Timeline for individuals was introduced at F8 in September as a new profile page format which generates scrapbook-like collages of status updates, photos, and videos spanning user’s entire history on Facebook (watch video below). For brands, it is an opportunity to create a more intimate relationship with the user by “seamlessly” integrating with their daily lives.

    Timeline, along with Facebook’s other new feature Gestures, opens up the door to a more meaningful way for brands to interact with consumers. But just like the Photo Tagging Auto-Suggestion of last June it is a slippery slope, raising concerns over privacy and the perception that we are commercializing our most private moments. These things tend to be self-correcting though and can’t honestly fault companies for exploring new avenues of engagement. For now, it will be interesting to see how it all shakes out.