The Digital Gloss Files - September 21

...with Julia Low

- Original Aussie content online? Oi oi oi. The Australian reports that the Convergence Review into the future communications landscape – including digital platforms YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, blogs and apps – should be subject to the same local content guidelines as traditional broadcast media, including film, television and radio. We need original Aussie voices and stories online, however, just because it's Aussie doesn't mean it's good, and good local content costs money to produce. We look forward to seeing how the review addresses economics and community standards in cyberspace. The review will release five discussion papers on Monday.

Aussie music festival Parklife has launched a brand new app that will help maximise your festival experience. The app features all the festival essentials such as artist info, set times, set time planner, stage locations, maps, and an augmented reality viewer to view chosen Parklife venues. You can also stay updated on set time changes and event updates by allowing automatic real-time notifications. The interactive Parklife app is available for free at the App Store and Android Market.

Speaking of apps, CNN has acquired personalised iPad magazine app Zite for a little over $20million. "Zite represents the next generation of content discovery and personalized publishing, and CNN wants to help lead in that space,” said KC Estonson, general manager of CNN Digital. “The Zite technology can... be used to help CNN's Websites and apps serve more personalized content, making our current digital services even better." Zite is currently the leading iPad news app that tailors its content based on what you Tweet, who you follow, the articles you read, and your personal interests.

And as the profusion of iPads users continues to rise, would you give up human interaction with waiters at restaurants to place your meal orders on an iPad instead?

Take part in the Breast Cancer Conversation using a nifty interactive infographic that streams live conversations about the disease from Twitter. Twitter conversations containing keywords associated with breast cancer will appear in a cluster of blue dots on the infographic, allowing users to read the latest tweets on mouse-over.

Seventeen magazine and ABC Family heads to Washington D.C. to participate in the Second Annual Federal Partners in Bullying Prevention Summit as part of their Delete Digital Drama anti-cyberbullying campaign. Of this initiative, editor-in-chief Ann Shoket tells YPulse, “This is the first campaign that talks to teens in their own language and in their own lives. We’ve made a specific effort to make sure they don’t feel like they’re being talked about or talked to. This is their world, their campaign, in their language. Other campaigns help kids define what is right and wrong. Some tell kids to hold on, that after high school, things will be different, but what are they supposed to do right now? We’re giving them tools to do something about it because it’s happening on a daily basis.”

Seventeen and ABC Family aren’t the only ones combating bullying—Time Warner Inc. and Facebook have also teamed up to launch Stop Bullying: Speak Up, a new social pledge app supported by CNN, Time, Cartoon Network, People, Sports Illustrated, and HLN. Business Wire has the full story.

UK’s leading online fashion retailer ASOS finally arrived on local shores last Friday, naming Australia as one of the brand’s largest international markets. “ASOS took the UK site, kept all the things our customers loved and localised all the features that we believed would make it easier for them to shop,” said Jon Kamaluddin, ASOS’s International Director. The new Australian store features products that match local seasons (no more buying warm woollens during our scorching summer!) and offers free shipping and returns. Watch PowerRetail’s exclusive interview with Kamaluddin here.

ASOS's Ethical Code of Conduct gets our tick of approval. On that note, if you're an online shopper, take a look at Labour Behind the Label’s Let's Clean up Fashion: The State of Pay Behind the High Street Report.

Calling all aspiring online editors! It’s time to polish up your CV. Fashion blogger Tavi Gevinson of Style Rookie fame is in search of a managing editor for her new website

Trouble surrounding web giants AOL and Yahoo is said to be the result of the growing popularity of niche websites that have narrower target audiences and more specialised content. As The New York Times reports, the answer to this problem is not as simple as large media corporations acquiring smaller popular websites. In fact, that may just contribute to a branding crisis and major corporate conflict, as the bitter rift between AOL and popular news website TechCrunch has demonstrated. On the flip side, Jonathan Glick of Sulia believes that niche websites shouldn’t think that getting acquired is the only way to make profits and become successful. “On the Web, traffic, good traffic, is earned in terms of referrals,” he said. “You don’t need to be part of a big site because if you are doing it right on the Web, distribution finds you.”

Choose what you see, hear, and read in your Facebook News Feed. The newly introduced Subscribe button lets you decide who you want to hear from and in what frequency (everything, most updates, or important highlights only). You can also allow users who aren’t your friends to subscribe to your updates by activating the feature on the Facebook Subscriptions Page. Plus, TechCrunch reports Facebook is also due to unveil "read", "listen", "watch" and "want" buttons on the wall along with the "like" button.

Social media by numbers. The UK Twitter stats are in, and while a whopping 32% (15.5 million) of all adults living in the UK have Twitter accounts, Facebook is still in the lead at 77% (37.4 million) followed by YouTube at 66% (32.1 million). Still, Twitter has reason to celebrate as reports show that Twitter is the fastest-growing social network in Canada and the US, trumping Facebook’s growth by 21%.

Still, Simon Canning reports for The Australian that Twitter lags behind Facebook as a marketing tool for driving traffic to print news websites.

Who says you can’t produce music the same way The Beatles did? Abbey Road Studios has launched a new online mixing service that allows you to upload your original tracks for Abbey Road engineers to mix. According to the official website, “the online mixing service offers a more accessible alternative to working personally at Abbey Road Studios, providing musicians and producers all over the world with the engineering excellence that makes us the perfect venue for mixing your song.” Prices vary according to the number of tracks and duration of each song.

Whoa, if all buildings looked like this, we’d never have to visit an IMAX theatre again.

Also, if you’ve ever wondered how Google Translate manages to help decipher secret messages written in foreign languages (the secret messages being our little love messages in French...), wonder no more.

A little niceness can make someone’s day, and in this case, it made New York City’s. Another one of Improv Everywhere’s projects that makes us smile...

Julia Low is a third-year journalism student and blogs @ This Daisy