Coopetition Among Modeling Sites

A Model Mayhem member brought up an interesting concept the other day in this thread. He was inquiring about the benefits of building “bridges” between competing modeling/photography networking sites to facilitate such functions as contest, events, mentoring, etc. This brings up an interesting concept. Although that thread focused primarily on event driven functions, I want to expand the discussion to something much broader.

A Model Mayhem member brought up an interesting concept the other day in this thread. He was inquiring about the benefits of building “bridges” between competing modeling/photography networking sites to facilitate such functions as contest, events, mentoring, etc. This brings up an interesting concept. Although that thread focused primarily on event driven functions, I want to expand the discussion to something much broader.

Some historical background. Coopetition is a word used to describe cooperative competition. It was a word coined in the early 1900s and re-coined in the 1990s to characterize Novell’s business strategy. It was widely credited to Carly Fiorina of Hewlett Packard but she did not invent the term. Coopetition refers to a business strategy where competitors work together where it is mutually beneficial to increase market share or reduce cost. It is widely adopted in the high tech world where interoperability is often the key to success. A notable example of coopetition is Microsoft’s relationship with Apple. Although they compete on the operating system arena, Microsoft also creates a lot of software for Apple’s OS. Apple’s iTune software is available to the Windows platform because it helps them sell music through the iTunes store and expands their market for iPod customers. Coopetition can also lead to muddled relationships. For example, Eric Schmidt, the CEO of Google, sits on the board of Apple. (Update: Eric Schmidt resigned from Apple’s board on August 3rd, 2009 citing conflict of interest.) When he joined in 2006, Google and Apple were not competitors but since then Goggle and Apple have both released competing mobile phones. Goggle is also working on an operating system for netbooks that will compete against both Apple and Microsoft.

Most of the time coopetition which leads to interoperability benefits the customers by giving them more choices. But sometimes companies take protective steps to lock out the competition at the expense of their customers. For example, Google created a Latitude app but Apple would not authorize it for sale as an iPhone app. More recently, Apple deauthorized Goggle Voice from iPhones’ App store effectively blocking it from the iPhone. Sometimes companies will take steps to block their competition at the expense of their own sales. When Palm released the Pre phone, Apple quickly blocked it from accessing the iTunes store. This results in lost sales of  iTunes music.

So how would coopetition work among modeling/photography site? Even among mainstream social networking sites like Myspace and Facebook, there is very little interoperability. They each compete in their own arena allowing access to certain parts of their sites where it benefits them to facilitate third party applications. When it comes to networking sites like Model Mayhem and One Model Place, there is no cooperation at all. In fact, some sites go as far as writing code to censor even the mention of competing sites. So how might cooperation between competing modeling sites work and why would leading sites such as One Model Place and Model Mayhem want to share anything with small sites? It’s obvious there is no advantage to sharing any profile information. That would just help smaller sites at the expense of larger sites. Here are some applications which might benefit from coopetition.

  • Unified mobile phone application that checks emails from all sites.
  • Single post casting call and travel notice that allows a casting call and travel notice to be created on one site and posted to all sites. Those responding to casting will still be limited to members of those respective sites.
  • Unified calendar to create/update a calendar that can be embedded on all sites.
  • An id verification system that uses a small credit card charge to verify the identity of profiles.

Note that the above applications require members to already have memberships in individual modeling sites. They do not drive traffic from one site to another. They merely make things easier for existing members and possibly reduce development cost among all participating sites. There are probably other applications that can benefit from coopetition. The real hurdle is getting the owners of the respective sites to look past their own bottom lines and see that there can be benefits to enhancing users’ experiences.

If you have other ideas on how coopetition can benefit all sites and members without hurting individual sites, feel free to add your comments below.

Tiered Nude Modeling Rates Deconstructed

I occasionally see modeling site forum posts from photographers who object to models using tiered rates for lingerie or nudes vs clothed shoots. Some refer to these as stripper rates as a means to disparage models who do this. The rationale given is that nude modeling requires no more effort than clothed modeling so it should be the same. Well a picture for a flyer cost no more to produced than the exact same picture used for a product label but most smart photographers will price the product shot much higher. Same effort, different price.

I occasionally see modeling site forum posts from photographers who object to models using tiered rates for lingerie or nudes vs clothed shoots. Some refer to these as stripper rates as a means to disparage models who do this. The rationale given is that nude modeling requires no more effort than clothed modeling so it should be the same. Well a picture for a flyer cost no more to produced than the exact same picture used for a product label but most smart photographers will price the product shot much higher. Same effort, different price.

Let me first say that tiered rates is not an Internet modeling phenomenon. Modeling agencies charge more for lingerie and nudes if the model does that kind of modeling. Tier rates are the standard, not the exception in many professional modeling jobs. The tiers are often tied to usage rather than amount of clothing and models will often model free or at a drastically reduced rate if the opportunity warrants it. A model’s rate for a fashion editorial in a major fashion magazine might be $200 for 3 days of work. Her next job might be $10,000 a day for a catalog shoot with a full buyout.

Photographers use tiered rates all the time. There is rarely a one set rate for photographers. A photographer who uses one and only one rate is losing potential jobs and revenue. Some jobs call for a higher rate plus usage while other jobs call for a lower rate. So why is a model who uses tier rates a stripper while a photographer who does the same is not?

Tiered rates are set by the market, not by the model. Nudes pay more because photographers will pay more. Simple as that. It has nothing to do with a risk premium of someone seeing those nudes in the future and it has nothing to do with a model wanting more money to show her goodies. A model can ask for any rate she wants but if the market does not want to pay, her rate is merely academic.

False value in flat rates. Some models will tote that they only have one flat rate for all modeling as if this was some kind of major selling point to photographers. Well, photographers, I’m here to tell you that you are not paying less for nudes, you are simply paying more for clothed shots of that model. A nude model who only quotes a flat rate for nudes is in effect pricing herself out of the market for many clothed shots. In a balanced supply/demand marketplace, the model will negotiate the highest fee she can get for that particular type of modeling. The highest fee she can get is for nude modeling so for that model who uses a flat rate, she is saying I will charge you a nude rate even if you don’t want me to get nude. Let’s say the same model has one account in OMP and one on Model Mayhem. Which of these accounts is a better deal?

OMP:

Clothed: $50/hr
Lingerie: $75/hr
Playboy style nudes: $100/hr

Model Mayhem: $100/hr up to Playboy style nudes.

So tier rates happen because the market dictates it. Simple as that. Don’t try to attach a moral component to it.

Season 6 (2009) Project Runway cast list

After a long delay due to legal battles, season 6 is finally ramping up. The show gets a new home and a new network moving to Los Angeles from New York and moving from Bravo to Lifetime.

TIM GUNN AND HEIDI KLUM Photographed on May 1, 2009, in Los Angeles PHOTOGRAPH BY ART STREIBER
TIM GUNN AND HEIDI KLUM Photographed on May 1, 2009, in Los Angeles PHOTOGRAPH BY ART STREIBER

Season 6 (2009) | ‘Project Runway’: Inside season 6! | Project Runway | 1 | Summer Entertainment: TV | TV | Summer Entertainment Guide | Entertainment Weekly.

After a long delay due to legal battles,  season 6 is finally ramping up. The show gets a new home and a new network moving to Los Angeles from New York and moving from Bravo to Lifetime.

Here’s the cast list:

• Shirin Askari, 25, Garland, Texas

• Louise Black, 32, Dallas

• Ra’Mon-Lawrence Coleman, 31, Milwaukee

• Rodney Epperson, 50, New York

• Ari Fish, 26, Kansas City, Mo

• Qristyl Frazier, 42, New York

• Gordana Gehlhausen, 45, San Diego

• Mitchell Hall, 26, Savannah, Ga.

• Althea Harper, 25, New York

• Logan Neitzel, 25, Seattle

• Nicolas Putvinksi, 27, New York

• Johnny Sakalis, 30, Los Angeles

• Irina Shabeyeva, 27, New York

• Christopher Straub, 30, Shakopee, Minn.

• Malvin Vein, 24, New York

• Carol Hannah Whitfield, 24, New York

Tyne Stecklein Performs With Jennifer Hudson in Michael Jackson Memorial

If anyone wondered who the blond singer was next to Jennifer Hudson singing “Will you be there”, her name is Tyne Stecklein and she is one of just 12 dancers selected to perform alongside Michael Jackson at London’s O2 arena. US dancers Charles Kapow, Ricardo Reid, Tyne Stecklein, Misha Hamilton, Mekia Cox, Nicholas Bass, Danielle Rueda-Watts and Christopher Grant. As well as, Timor Steffens from Germany, Australian dancer Shannon Holtzapffel, Daniel Celbre and Devin Jamieson from Canada.

Tyne Stecklein

If anyone wondered who the blond singer was next to Jennifer Hudson singing “Will you be there”, her name is Tyne Stecklein and she is one of just 12 dancers selected to perform alongside Michael Jackson at London’s O2 arena.  US dancers Charles Kapow, Ricardo Reid, Tyne Stecklein, Misha Hamilton, Mekia Cox, Nicholas Bass, Danielle Rueda-Watts and Christopher Grant. As well as, Timor Steffens from The Netherlands, Australian dancer Shannon Holtzapffel, Daniel Celbre and Devin Jamieson from Canada.

According to her bio here:

At age 17 she served as an assistant teacher for L.A. Dance Magic Conventions for their national touring season. She was chosen as an apprentice member of Evolution Dance Company directed by Mark Meisner, and was a featured dancer in Soul Escape Dance Company directed by Justin Giles. She was also named a “Hall of Fame” Dancer for Company Dance Convention.

After graduating from High School, Tyne relocated to L.A. to pursue a professional career in dance. In her first year there, she was selected as a dancer for the national “High School Musical Concert Tour” as well as for the South American tour. She was a dancer in the movies, High School Musical II, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button with Brad Pitt, and Stepbrothers with Will Ferrell.

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Shaheen Jafargholi
Shaheen Jafargholi

Britain’s Got Talent finalist Shaheen Jafargholi is the 12 year old boy performing a cover of the Jackson 5’s “Who’s Lovin’ You.”

Are you ready for a Google operating system?

If they can pull this off, it may pose a significant challenge to Microsoft. Netbooks changed the landscape of mobile computing forcing Microsoft to extend the shelf life of Windows XP. Vista is too resource hungry to run on netbooks and if Microsoft didn’t offer XP, manufacturers will be forced to move to Linux. In the short time netbooks have been on the market, Microsoft has captured a 70% market share. Linux netbooks are returned 4x more often than Windows XP netbooks. I’ll be interesting to see if Google can distribute a version of Linux users will accept.

A very interesting and potentially significant post on the Google blog today.

So today, we’re announcing a new project that’s a natural extension of Google Chrome — the Google Chrome Operating System. It’s our attempt to re-think what operating systems should be.

Google Chrome OS is an open source, lightweight operating system that will initially be targeted at netbooks. Later this year we will open-source its code, and netbooks running Google Chrome OS will be available for consumers in the second half of 2010. Because we’re already talking to partners about the project, and we’ll soon be working with the open source community, we wanted to share our vision now so everyone understands what we are trying to achieve.

Speed, simplicity and security are the key aspects of Google Chrome OS. We’re designing the OS to be fast and lightweight, to start up and get you onto the web in a few seconds. The user interface is minimal to stay out of your way, and most of the user experience takes place on the web. And as we did for the Google Chrome browser, we are going back to the basics and completely redesigning the underlying security architecture of the OS so that users don’t have to deal with viruses, malware and security updates. It should just work.

If they can pull this off, it may pose a significant challenge to Microsoft. Netbooks changed the landscape of mobile computing forcing Microsoft to extend the shelf life of Windows XP. Vista is too resource hungry to run on netbooks and if Microsoft didn’t offer XP, manufacturers will be forced to move to Linux. In the short time netbooks have been on the market, Microsoft has captured a 70% market share. Linux netbooks are returned 4x more often than Windows XP netbooks. I’ll be interesting to see if Google can distribute a version of Linux users will accept.

Breakout stars from Michael Jackson’s memorial service

If you saw the Michael Jackson memorial and the rendition of “Heal the World” and “We Are the World”, no doubt you saw a breakout performance by an unknown Asian singer. The mystery singer was Judith Hill, a Pasadena, California-based vocalist who was recruited to be one of the backup singers for Jackson’s This Is It! concerts at London’s O2 Arena.

Judith Hill
Michael Jackson Memorial - We are the world
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If you saw the Michael Jackson memorial and the rendition of “Heal the World” and “We Are the World”, no doubt you saw a breakout performance by an unknown Asian singer.  The mystery singer was Judith Hill, a Pasadena, California-based vocalist who was recruited to be one of the backup singers for Jackson’s This Is It! concerts at London’s O2 Arena. According to her bio:

Judith was born in Los Angeles and raised in a family of musicians.  Her mother is an immigrant from Japan who met her father in a funk band in the 1970s.  She laughs about her bi-racial experience, “I was a skinny mixed kid with a lot of hair that I didn’t know what to do with (and still don’t know what to do with it).  And my mom could not help me with it!” She lived in a Christian home and embraced Jesus Christ at an early age.  She comments, “I had a pretty good life in my childhood.  Me and God were friends since the beginning.  That helped a lot. But, it didn’t save me from walking a path of pain and asking the deep questions of life.  I was a philosopher as a kid, and in school you could find me in the library.”  She admits that she never “fit in”.  Depending on the social circle, she was labeled “too quiet”, “too loud”, “too black”, “to asian”, or too something.  Judith expresses, “I was a traveler, kind of a drifter.  But, looking back I see how all of those experiences, friends, and cultures made me who I am today.”

She will likely play a role in AEG’s tribute concerts in the months to come.  You can find her Myspace page here.

You can see a couple of her performances here:

Judith Hill Live at the Temple Bar
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When the final Michael Jackson “This Is It” rehearsal videos was released, people were talking about the female guitarist featured alongside Jackson. Her name is Orianthi Panagaris, and she’s barely 24 years old.  She was born in Adelaide, South Australia.  Orianthi started playing guitar at age six.

You can find her Myspace page here and follow her on Twitter here.

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Orianthi Michael Jackson Guitarist Special
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Orianthi
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Orianthi @ PRS NAMM 2007
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