Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Your readers are remixing your Web site

Unless you are younger or hipper than the average guy working at a trade magazine, you probably haven't paid much attention to remix artists. But now you have to.
Remix artists take existing work and redo it in a fashion more to their liking. The most well-known example is the "The Phantom Edit," in which a remix artist re-edited the Star Wars film "Phantom Menace" to remove the annoying character Jar-Jar Blinks. Perhaps more interesting is DJ Dangermouse's "The Gray Album," which combines the Beatles "White Album" with Jay Z's "The Black Album."
Remixing has also captured the attention of Web programmers. And there are now plug-in applications available for the Firefox browser that allow readers to see your site the way they want to see it, not the way you want them to see it.
Wired has an interesting article on the enabling technology, known as Greasemonkey, and some of the applications. B2B publishers should take a look. Greasemonkey lets users circumvent two of the major revenue sources of online publishing. First, by downloading a Greasemonkey script I can avoid seeing the ads on your page. Second, I can download scripts that offer up alternatives to any e-commerce applications on your site.
This is powerful, compelling stuff. And publishers ignore it at their peril.
Content is separating from its containers.

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