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Longstanding investor in Looksmart (and a 69 yr old ex-tradesman), who has a passionate interest in the problems of newspapers along with their success in all their monetisation attempts made, on the web. For the "times are indeed, a changin", I feel. [17th of Aug, 2011 - Print media... More
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  • Australian PM Paul Keating: "I Want To Do You Slowly" - Facebook Ban?

    It's tough when the Facebook "catches you out" (& bans you) for repeating a phrase ..that was once famously used by a former Prime Minister in the Australian Parliament.

    My doing so has earned me a suspension for the next 12 hours.

    So I'm wondering (under the UN's proposed ONE World Government - with UCC Law applicable, a uniform education program for all children, and an Agenda21 program for ALL Local Governments to follow), will social media CENSORSHIP have a uniform interpretation, also?

    Here's Facebook's notification:

    We Removed Something You Posted

    We removed this from Facebook because it violates our Community Standards:

    Here's the offending phrase:

    [As posted] Mark .."I'll do you nice and slowly, Curley" ~ Keating ;)

    You're Temporarily Blocked

    You're temporarily blocked from posting on Facebook for the next 12 hours. Please review our Community Standards so you can understand what's allowed on Facebook and keep your account in good standing.

    The video in question (You Tube): tinyurl.com/l5pwm43

    (Sound, is low)

    [Paul] Keating at his best!! :)

    tinyurl.com/89e94az

    Readers may need to 'copy and paste' the above links, to access.

    Times are tough enough without having to be without my "friends", for 12 hrs?

    Then again, there's always the Test Cricket to tune into.

    TV? Now what channel does the cricket, these days? It's been so long.

    Facebook and Cricket? Bowling a "maiden" over? (And, with a pace bowler doing it slowly?)

    Acceptable or, deemed as possibly offensive or, whatever?

    HMMMmm? FML!!

    LC

    Jul 11 12:21 PM | Link | Comment!
  • Looksmart's Q-1 2013 Financial Results

    ....."We have begun the process of bringing ownership thinking to our employees" is such a refreshing message that Looksmart's newest CEO Michael Onghai has passed on to shareholders.

    Michael has just delivered the Co's First Quarter 2013 Financial Results, yesterday.

    In a quickly changing world many may feel that too many young people are being told what to think rather than being told, "how" to think.

    [Looksmart's] "Ownership thinking"....There's no doubt, that...

    Education is the answer...not 'the stick' .. Education and NOT of the indoctrination kind, that will see future people becoming slaves under the control of, corporate ("board-room") idealism. No more, no less.

    This can only (ultimately) result in NO more "free" thinking. People have a need to learn how to control their minds ....and for them to not have their minds take control over them or, have them controlled, by others.

    In my (1st April, 2013) instapost Looksmart CEO Michael Onghai's Initial Report I'd opined the following:

    ........With operating expenses now down to about $2 million per quarter post 2012 (this estimate does include all cost related to the operating of the Company's data center) and a TAC going forward (my estimate only, of course) of just 20% of all post 2012 comprehensive revenue or, income, there's a distinct possibility now that Looksmart CEO Michael Onghai's 'intention of seeing profitable revenue growth in the future', may well come sooner than many could ever imagine.

    It's pleasing to read (from the Q1 Report) that Looksmart's ... "Total operating expenses in the first quarter of 2013 were $2.1 million and included $0.02 million of non-cash, share-based compensation."

    And for the Q2 Period we are currently in?

    I see PROFITABILTY being announced for THIS period. [Note ps;]

    Well played, Michael Onghai and Team Looksmart.

    LOOK: $0.74 Up 0.03 (+4.18%) May 15

    Always, only an opinion.

    LC

    ps; Not so soon though. (As I had though may happen.)

    From the 10-Q ... HTML

    In a mention of the Co's Advertiser Networks Revenue for Q1 (1.74M) and looking ahead, the Co advises that ..."We expect that in the near future advertiser network revenue will generally remain at levels realized in the first quarter."

    With Publisher Solutions ($0.26M) possibly, likewise:

    ...."We expect that in the near future publisher solutions revenue will generally remain at levels realized in the first quarter."

    "Operating expense for the three months ended March 31, 2013 ($2.09M) included $0.5 million related to the tender offer by PEEK. Excluding the effect of this charge, operating expenses decreased by $2.4 million in the three months ended March 31, 2013, compared to the three months ended March 31, 2012."

    "We do not expect substantial future increases in general and administrative expense."

    It can't get any worse that this quarter, surely?

    "As of March 31, 2013, we had 17 employees."

    (Trade accounts receivable, net $1.44M)
    ( Deferred revenue and customer deposits $1.10M)

    Q2? Break-even, at best.

    Disclosure: Long LOOK

    May 16 12:07 PM | Link | Comment!
  • When The Advertiser's ROI Becomes A Final Judgment

    Friday's close gives Looksmart a Market Cap of just $12.53M.- And anyone who considers the Co is 'over-valued' down at these low levels (there are a few), must surely have rocks in their head. Certainly when considering that the Co had ended the 2012 year with $15.9 million in cash.

    Looksmart are in with many other small Co's (and globally, they've had billions of $$'s invested in them), that are seeking a small yet profitable "share" of an ever increasing digital ad-spend.

    Few AdTech Co's can boast they are making any real money outside of established big players, and led by Google. - While all are 'spending plenty' to create a 'unique formula' or, develop improvements that can assure them of a regular share of that total (growing), ad-spend.

    In my previous post I expressed the feeling that operating expenses were now down to around the $2 million per quarter level. I'd also felt (with Comprehensive Revenues of say, around $3.0 to $3.5 million), a likely return to profitability won't be too far away.

    This is in spite of the Co's uniquely independent search intent based marketplace (in the global ecosystem) being anything, other than an ongoing 'work in progress'. And in any assuming that Looksmart are actually adding more 'improvement/s' (to it's RTB AdCenter 'buy/sell' side offerings), becomes only a guess.

    Targeting of Search Intent

    To me, it has become a little comforting to read the following interesting comment to an AdExchanger article, and its from some-one who had actually departed from his CRO role at Looksmart, back in mid January.

    Chris O'Hara says:
    April 4, 2013 at 11:51 am

    ........."I was recently involved with a company trying to build a search retargeting technology that leveraged keyword-based search data & applied results to display inventory. The biggest challenge was that we knew SEM buyers demanded quality controls to prevent click fraud.

    ............They [the SEM buyers] trusted Google and other Tier One search clicks, but were not sure they were going to get quality when ads were delivered across display-based exchange inventory. ....After looking into quality control practices across a number of exchanges, we determined that there were no effective security measures in place to test quality at both query time and click time. That was a scary realization.

    I hope we as an industry can solve this. Without strong quality controls in place, there is no way display will be able to eat into other channel budgets and exploit the "Meeker gap" in lost revenue opportunity, even as time spent in digital channels increases."

    Chris' comment was to the above-linked article that's entitled "Display Advertising Fraud is a Sell-Side Problem" and he advises quality control is a concern for both search query & inventory, in some instances.

    [Yet, for Looksmart buyers/sellers.] It's all happening in Real Time.

    I'm wondering why there isn't more emphasis made on the "user" (who instigates the query and any resulting paid click - all in real time) rather than whose search engine/inventory that a user had originated [on] or, was found, on. And that on an impression by impression basis (that may or, may not lead to a paid click), each individual user must surely be of the utmost importance. When/then (ultimately?), its the advertiser's ROI that will always become the final judgment.

    Just an opinion.

    LOOK: $0.7240 Up 0.0240 (+3.43%) Apr 12, 3:42PM EDT

    LC

    Disclosure: Long LOOK

    .

    Apr 13 10:09 PM | Link | Comment!
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