Thought for the day: It’s John Wayne’s World

Will the events of the past six months make the Hollywood style approach to IT a thing of the past? asks Simon Moores

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Will the events of the past six months make the Hollywood style approach to IT a thing of the past? asks Simon Moores




I have been watching a series of IT industry briefing videos, all very expensive, very lucid and, above all, very American in flavour.

Much, if not most of the material we see as an industry has some US origination. Videos, marketing materials, you name it.

In fact, some of the work I do often involves taking such US-sourced material and reworking it into something that is a little more digestible by a more eclectic European audience.

Big American IT companies have, for years, relied on the production of "Star Trek-style" videos, which tell their partners and customers “how it’s going to be”, in a homely mid-western fashion, best seen in the speeches of George W Bush.

And there lies the problem. Because if you happen to be French or German or from around 68 other countries, this style of presentation has, all of a sudden, come to define the sharp rift between one dominant global culture and everyone else’s.

I believe that American companies are going to have think seriously about their marketing materials and messages in future.

Historically, a "Made in the USA" badge or message, carried with it a powerful credibility that compensated for any intrinsic shortfall in sophistication.

Today, however, I think US companies are going to have to shed their more obvious American touch abroad, because of the deeper association with the political events of this year.

There’s a difference between talking to and talking down to one’s customers, and quick video cutting back and forth between American product managers might have a subconscious impact on a European audience, suggesting that only Americans know "what’s what" and the remainder are there to make up the numbers.

Wouldn't you like to see more materials and video presentations where Europeans, rather than Americans, communicate corporate information?

Or have we surrendered to the Hollywood style of IT so completely, that any question of challenging the hidden politics of communication is an irrelevance?

What do you think?

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Setting the world to rights with the collected thoughts and opinions of leading industry analyst Dr Simon Moores of Zentelligence.

Acting globally, Zentelligence (Research) advises governments, suppliers, business and the media on the evolution, application and delivery of leading-edge technologies and specialises in the areas of eGovernment and information security.

For further information on Zentelligence and its research, presentation and analyst services visit

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