Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Share data and help people live better lives

I came across patientslikeme today. The company’s goal is to “enable people to share information that can improve the lives of patients diagnosed with life-changing diseases”. People are encouraged to share real world, outcome-based data to help advance knowledge and understanding of a range of diseases. The firm also looks to establish data-sharing partnerships with doctors, pharmaceutical and medical device companies, research organizations, and non-profits. The idea is that partnering and pooling together patient data (that patients freely volunteer) can help identify new medical information and trends that can be applied to better treat patients. It’s not clinical science as we know it but it sounds like a good idea to me. Perhaps other data-rich industries can do something similar? For example, some online gambling operators are beginning to tap into the power of data to help gain greater insight into gambling behaviours such as bwin and Harvard’s transparency project. This is somthing we are also doing at Bet Buddy, and although such approaches are still new in online gambling, it will be hard to stop the momentum in the future once people realise the power of sharing data. Watch this space...

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Power to the people

Here’s a new service called pownum that allows customers to rate pretty much any organisation. Pownum say that “Whether its sheer frustration or absolute delight, wouldn't it be good to let such organisations know how you feel? Whether we want to express our feelings on organisations' attitudes towards customer service, the environment, their employees or society in general, the harsh truth is we are powerless to be heard.” The idea being that collectively, people can make a much bigger impact and make corporations listen and act.

I did a quick comparison of some of the betting operators to see how punters are rating them: Betfair (6/10), PaddyPower (7.5/10) and 888.com (7/10). I must stress that this is a very new service and the number of people rating these organisations is currently very low, but other organisations are beginning to get quite a few ratings from customers telling them how they feel about them e.g. Waitrose must be delighted that customers are rating it 8.5 (compared with 6.53 for Sainsburys and 4.7 for Tesco).

Social media is still very much in its infancy so the impact of it on companies and society will take time to evolve. But perhaps one day punters will be using services like pownum to tell the world which are the best and worst betting operators and why, which will bring a new transparency to how we choose who we bet with.