My name is Saul! I'm an award winning Word of Mouth Marketer, Professional Speaker on the subjects of Social Media, Customer Service and best of all... Word of Mouth. I collect Air Force One sneakers and think you should hire me... (as a consultant) to teach you how to get your company doing interesting things!
the smartest man in the world.

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Photos from the Drupal Conference in San Francisco, CA 2010

Sunday, Oct 10, 2009

I want to be the Amazing Randi of Social Media…or why am I offering you my hard earned money.

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Most people who follow technology and business probably know about the $1,000,000 (that’s one millions dollars) prize Netfilx awarded a team of folks for developing a better movie recommendation algorithm but did you know that there is another 1,000,000 prize out there waiting to be claimed?

Since 1964 James Randi has had a cash prize for anyone who can prove the existence of paranormal activity. The reward started as $10,000 and over time has now grown to over $1,000,000 and while it has been challenged a few time it has never been awarded.
These two things, plus a conversation I had over dinner with a very well known social media author and practitioner got me thinking that we need a similar challenge in the Social Media space….why you ask?
Well, It is my belief that there hasn’t been a new idea in Social Media in a few years and while that isn’t necessarily a bad thing because essentially we are still in the very beginning of all of this it should be a slight concern since things that don’t change and evolve tend to die off and become irrelevant.
So in an effort to kick start a movement that takes Social Media beyond the “Listen and Engage” stage I am putting up a cash prize of my own.
Send me your thoughts and ideas and lets figure out the next great discovery together…and if being a part of something cool isn’t enough then do it for the money (as shown below…yes that is the whole prize for now)

  1. Thanks for making me smile on this dreary Montreal afternoon; an excellent idea nonetheless.

    My brain has been spinning around Twitterville eating Meatball Sundaes with a few Trust Agents who have too much Whuffie; it may be time for Six Pixels of Separation!

    I'll pitch in another $10.00 to help get you closer to becoming the Amazing Randi of Social Media.


  2. Saul,

    This is not a new idea. It has been published as a ChangeThis manifesto. It is really just an innovation, perhaps. It ties together the work of the smart folks with the real big ideas.

    But seeing how it has not earned me a penny yet, even though a year ago it was a finalist amoung 320 entries from 48 countries in the Power of Us: Reimagine Media contest held by Ashoka and WeMedia at the University of Miami. I will throw down for the $20 up for grabs here.

    Please go to and read the free ebook there. If you don't find a new idea in there,i.e. A proposal to link social media to corporate valuation in a way similar to how brand valuation was pioneered in the late 1980s … I will buy you a drink.

    Now you are an early adoptor and may have already got the jist of SCVA, but this proposal is not more "conversation, listen, be authentic" chanting (not discounting any if these).

    I believe that the optimum solutions we seek to the complex problems we face and new break thoughs in productivity would come to pass if we could "hack" the corporate value algorithim with an approach like SCVA that could focus institutional investor and therefore Board level management at the biggest corps in the world on the requirement to rearchitect their businesses around broadband connectivity. Sent fr iPhone so sorry for the typos

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