From The Economist:
Can Lady Gaga help Exxon Mobil crack social media?
LADY GAGA’S business manager, Troy Carter, will judge an eight-hour hackathon at the SXSW festival in Austin, Texas, on March 11th. Geeks will vie to create new ideas to do with digital music distribution. The event will be hosted by Backplane, a tech start-up co-founded by Mr Carter, which has just launched its first product, a web community for Lady Gaga called LittleMonsters.com (after the pop star’s pet name for her fans).
The goal is to create a one-stop shop for everything Gaga. Fans will be able to download her music, buy tickets for her shows and chat with each other (and even, perhaps, with the singer herself). It will feature “social ticketing”, which will make it easy for fans to find concert seats near their friends and even start conversations beforehand with strangers they will be sitting with. Translation software will allow fans without a language in common to chat about changing the world one sequin at a time.
For now, LittleMonsters is by invitation only (just 10,000 “super fans” have been chosen from around 1m applicants) but it is expected soon to open to all. Mr Carter says the data generated by the site will be valuable. He will be able to identify mouthy fans to whom others listen—“key influencers”, in the jargon—and court them for their insights.
Continue reading the rest of the story on The Economist