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Jack Henderson
June 6, 2016

Social Media on TV!

OOZO.tv is a web based digital signage system that displays social media content. We use it here at betahaus and if you’ve been in our cafe you know what we're talking about! Our recent chat with Founder Norton Amato Jr. explains how OOZO.tv has become the platform it is today and what the story behind it is.

You started from Digitaltailoring, to TwitRadar, to OOZO.tv - Can you tell us the story?

TwitRadar was born as an experimental project inside our digital agency, Digitaltailoring.com. We wanted to take large amounts of data and combine it with engaging visuals to create something that would get more attractive as people contributed. We started out by telling our close friends about it and popularity snowballed. It was 2009 and we managed to take advantage of Twitter's popularity. The only problem was the social network landscape was changing, Facebook and Instagram’s popularity was rising, and we wanted to incorporate them. Unfortunately, the platform wasn’t flexible enough to incorporate these channels.

Fast forward to April 2012, just after our first BETAPITCH in Berlin. I sat in on a talk by betahaus' CEO Christoph Fahle; he was sharing his thoughts on betahaus' internal communication challenges. He wanted to make communication more democratic and interactive; it was then I realised that we would have to rebuild our core system from scratch. So I told Christoph that if he was crazy enough to install a display inside the betahaus cafe, I would develop the new software for him for free. He agreed! We struck a deal and by November 2012 the new system was born, rebranded as OOZO.tv.

 

"I told Christoph that if he was crazy enough to install a display inside the betahaus cafe, I would develop the new software for him for free."

 

OOZO.tv

 

What kinds of social media can you incorporate into the stream of OOZO.tv nowadays?

OOZO.tv is already pulling content from all major social networks, including Youtube and Vimeo. We support Facebook, Twitter and Instagram whilst also capturing and filtering #hashtagged posts. The Pro plan offers the possibility to upload videos, images or gifs straight to the TV. That content doesn’t necessarily need to be online.

Sounds impressive! What main developments are you focusing on now?

Right now, it is to increase the number of installed displays as fast as possible. Since February we've been offering a Freemium version of the system to get more users on board. The only entry barrier right now is to get a computer connected to the display, some people are using Chromecasts, smart TVs, laptops or even old desktops. Anything goes and we're not going to restrict the possibilities.

As a result, our user database has more than doubled its size. Monthly captured content is now over 500 thousand posts and our server engineers are almost freaking out! That's empowering us to find better partnerships and projects with bigger brands in retailing.

We’re also working on connecting new networks (LinkedIn & Pinterest) whilst enhancing control over content. In addition, we are planning to launch audio integration from Soundcloud and Spotify.

 

"some people are using Chromecasts, smart TVs, laptops or even old desktops. Anything goes and we're not going to restrict the possibilities."

 

Oozo team
The team at OOZO.tv 

OOZO.tv as a service and product has developed due to and in relationship with innovations in technology. What technological developments have you found crucial and what biggest leaps did you take?

The biggest leap we've had is adapting it to run with Raspberry Pi. We had to rebuild the front end from Flash to Javascript and HTML5 interface. That made the product more compatible and more prepared for the market.

More recently to support the Freemium plans, we integrated the system with Google Double-click and 3rd party Ad Tech. That's a key piece of the OOZO.tv platform! Programmatic media will enable us to support advertising and generate income for venue owners.

Any valuable tips for our community?

Well, if you're considering going all the way to prove your idea and to start your own business, do it! Just remember: you have to go all-in, and you'll have a lot of bad days before the good ones come. Furthermore it requires a variety of skills, so; study a lot, talk to people, be humble and ask for help, you can learn something new from everyone. The most important part however is: take your time to select the right people. Don't go signing contracts just because you need the money, that's the worst thing you can do! Look for partners and investors that have proven experience in the field and find someone that is willing to offer their time and not just money.

 

"Study a lot, talk to people, be humble and ask for help, you can learn something new from everyone"

 

We've worked with OOZO.tv for some time now and love what they're doing, check out this video of our CEO Christoph Fahle talking about how OOZO.tv works in our cafe!

Make your first step in coworking today. Here you can find out more about how to do that.

Probably the biggest benefit of coworking is community and events. Now we know it may not be the first thing you’re looking for as you seek out your next office space, but bear with us.

Imagine using your lunch breaks to chat with someone in your industry. Meeting freelance developers at after-work beers. Networking with investors at BETAPITCH. Pitching at our weekly betabreakfast and getting support and feedback on your new ideas.

betahaus has spent the last 10 years cultivating a community of people who we genuinely like working with. And when you join, your team will become a part of it, too.

" People matter! Community was always what we were all about. ‘’

In June we launched #PeopleInbeta - our monthly blog post series in which our Content Manager - Vihra interviewed teams and freelancers from the betahaus community to present the variety of creatives we have in ‘haus, to understand their missions and get some useful advice for our audience. We talked on topics such as sustainability (with PlanA) , decentralized digital identity (with JOLOCOM), curated music experiences (with Bespoke Sounds), freelance photography (with Sara Herrlander), full-stack development (with Obst Digital), design (with LAUDO) and much more.

Interview with LAUDO at betahaus | Neukölln
Interview with Obst.Digital at betahaus | Neukölln

"The Summer is the best time to host Backyard sessions and BBQ’s’’

In the summer, we launched a couple of new events in Neukölln like Freelancers, Unite!, The Backyard Sessions and My friend’s BBQ. 

Freelancers, Unite! developed as our productive coworking session with freelancers from in and outside the ‘haus. Once a month, we picked an important freelance topic (such as taxes, time-management, etc) and invited experts to give us insights on the topic. We saw so many new faces and had the chance to come back closer to where we started from - the freelance, grassroots culture. 

Freelancers, Unite! at betahaus | Neukölln

Another event, which started in July (and turned out to be our favourite events) were The Backyard Sessions. Organised by our queen of Neukölln - Robbin – the Backyard Sessions are our creative evenings with live music jams, movie screenings and cocktails. 

The Backyard Sessions at basement.berlin
Movie Screening at basement.berlin

This last event was hilarious because for quite some time, nobody knew exactly who organised it or invited them. The friend was throwing a BBQ for the community in the garden and this led to all our members joining and staying after for a beer or two with us.

‘’My favourite moment this year was the second friends bbq which was actually cancelled because of the rain forecast. But despite the bad weather, people show up and it turned into a super nice intimate evening with Elizaveta and Paul giving a garden concert.’’ - Robbin (Community Manager, betahaus)

''In July, it was great how the casual after-work BBQ turned into an impromptu acoustic blues jam session with Elizavetta Barsegova and Paul, who have the voice of an angel. Actually, all of the My Friend's BBQ's and Backyard Sessions were AWESOME.’’
- Paige (Head of Marketing, betahaus) 

The Garden at betahaus | Neukölln
My Friend's BBQ at betahaus | Neukölln



"As a coworking space, you have to give stage to important topics.’’

This year we released a new event format in Kreuzberg called ‘’The betaSalon’’. It's an open panel discussion which aims to give stage to important topics and give free speech on them. The fist one we did on the EU elections, last month we talked about changemakers, but our favourite one for this season stays ‘’Mother + Founder’’ where we partnered with FemGems podcast and recorded a live podcast episode for them having Madeleine Gummer von Mohl (betahaus co-founder), Kristine Zeller (co-creater of ooshi period underwear) and Luisa Hoffman on the stage.

betaSalon at betahaus | Kreuzberg

"We should fight for a more human-centered tech development’’

Every September, our co-founders take part in the Techfestival. in Copenhagen, spending a few days disconnecting from the daily life and focusing on creating a better, more human-centered tech future. This year the think tank which included our co-founders Madeleine and Max came up with the TechPledge. The Tech Pledge was made to emphasize the need for a new direction in tech. Similar to the Hippocratic oath for doctors, the Tech Pledge is a promise to make tech a force for good and ensure responsible and sustainable tech leadership. It’s a commitment to driving a new direction in technology.

Techfestival. 2019 in Copenhagen


"Startups are transforming European football as we know it.’’

One of the most exciting projects for betahausX this year (which is also continuing in 2020) is their new startup challenge called The Werder Lab - a global startup competition that aims to reimagine the way clubs like Werder work with athletes, fans and partners.



"You should leave time for the things you love most’’ 

This year couldn’t end without us having our favourite events - the end-of-the-year holiday party and the BETAPITCH Global Finals. On the 6th of December we saw the 9 finalists of the regional BETAPITCH competitions pitching in front of our jury. Congrats to Troy from Hamburg for winning the big prize.

We finished the year at our Holiday Party celebrating anything and everything at betahaus | Neukölln together with our members, friends of friends and our favourite artists from Passiflora LIVE, Tapete and Kotoe.

Love at The betahaus Holiday Party 2019


Thank you for being with us in 2019. It's been a crazy big year for us and it wouldn't been possible without your support, trust and the hard work of our amazing team. Have an amazing holiday time and we'll see you again in 2020.

With love,
betahaus

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