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Now here is a topic that is worth exploring. I am at The Israel Conference in Los Angeles. Yes, this blue eyed, Catholic German immigrant went to a conference that was 99.99% Jewish and they were all very nice to me. I was invited by Offir Gutelson who just sold his company PicScout to Getty Images not even a month ago. I practice what I preach. You must network, you treat people good and you stay interested in learning new things because you never know who you will meet.

Offir was one of the speakers and of course I said I’d come when he invited me. For one I wanted to get the inside scoop of why Getty bought PicScout and secondly what in the world is an Israel Conference all about?

The first part of my not-so-subtle plan was disappointing. There was no secret inside scoop. Getty Images had been contracting PicScout’s services for a while. As the largest image distributor in the world it made sense to someone buying it. They do want to keep the service open to other companies and continue to grow it. Getty says that the data is protected. I am not holding my breath on that part but Offir is correct about one thing. PicSout has two arms. One to chase infringers and one to assist with legal licensing. He says that his vision has always been that images are better protected on the net and that with Google indexing your images they show up all over the net almost inadvertently. So why not make it easy to find the rightful licensing owner? Not all 80% of unauthorized internet uses (yes, that’s the number) are made because people are thieves. A good percentage may be simply that the original owner can’t be found. Seriously, how would you go about finding the license holder for an image that you found through Google without further references?

The real treat was the Tech Conference. Yes, there was a bit of the expected rah-rah but aside from that I was floored by the quality and quantity of attendees. I had no idea that Israel had become such a hub of technology. I mean, SERIOUSLY!

I spoke to the CEO of LivePerson. Ever gone on a website and wanted to speak to a LivePerson? That’s his company, listed on Nasdaq. Or how about Illan the Corporate VP from Kinectic (X-Box) who oversaw development and launch? 10 million units sold in 8 months with 0.0something% returns. Or powerhouse Sol Tsvi of Genieo, a woman just of my liking. If you want a smarter homepage on your computer check her Beta site out. They are finished with the first round of funding and that lady is smart as a whip. Submit Express‘ President and I chatted a bit about SEO and on and on it went.

Why am I telling you all of this?

That’s right. Go out and network even if you have no clue what is in it for you. While I am not yet sure what the opportunities are that arise out of this something will come of it eventually, it always does.

What did I learn? There was a pretty heated discussion about content or technology being more important. Hey, that had my name written all over it. The answer from an esteemed panel with millions and millions of dollars in sales was this: first you create the experience you want to give the customer. Then you build the technology so that you can deliver exactly what you want that experience to be.  Finally and lastly you add the content. In this space, content is a commodity and that is what I see happening more and more. What we do is no longer the essence but simply a part of something else.

What should you take from this? Again, I have been preaching this for a while. Don’t focus on any one individual image as if your live depended on it. You must look at what is going on in our space and recognize the bigger picture.

What is your thought on technology versus content?

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