A Game of Cat And Mouse
Magazines aren’t the only print advertising venue to capitalize on the new technology linking print content to the Internet. And with all this hoopla over Digimarc’s MediaBridge and Digital Convergence’s :CueCat, the media world has neglected a not so insignificant company called GoCode.
GoCode is a business technology company that provides an unobtrusive method of hyper-linking print media to digital. Claiming to be the world's smallest bar code standard, GoCode is the only barcode that fits within printed lines of text, connecting editorial, advertising and classifieds to additional online information.
With the development of its 2D bar code and inexpensive hand-held scanner, GoCode claims to have created a very user-friendly consumer barcode system, with data compression specifically designed to satisfy the size and reproduction constraints found in common magazines, catalogs, and newspapers.
GoCodes can be printed within the confines of 6-point printed type, creating a bar code smaller than a fingernail. The hand-held scanner, called the GoCode Reader (available to subscribers of participating newspapers) decodes GoCode through a patented new technology that utilizes a miniature camera and microprocessor and that attaches to a PC through the mouse/keyboard port. The Reader not only hyperlinks print content to web content but also enables users to make instant e-commerce purchases directly out of a newspaper, magazine or catalog, without typing or calling a toll free number.
In addition to providing journalists and editors with a system for linking their articles to online content, GoCode also benefits advertisers by enabling them to encode even the longest Web addresses, linking a reader directly to digital promotions and advertisements, not just company home pages.
"GoCode is a win-win technology," said Lee Shapleigh, executive vice president of ASA, a Charleston-based advertising agency. "Not only does it add functionality to an advertisement, it also lets advertisers see which print publications are delivering the best numbers.”
Beginning in early May, The Charleston Post and Courier made history by becoming the first daily newspaper to physically link its print edition to additional online content through the use of technology provided by GoCode.
Yesterday, The Post and Courier took the technology a step further by using GoCodes to link its print edition to its e-commerce site, ShopCharleston.net, which resulted in the world's first bar code-based e-commerce purchase from a daily paper - a dozen of red roses, delivered to an expectant wife.
"It seems like a symbolically appropriate purchase," said Larry Tarleton, assistant publisher of The Post & Courier. "We've been working diligently with GoCode over the past few months to marry our print to the Internet, and e-commerce was one of the expected offspring."
The Post & Courier's GoCode-enabled e-commerce came about as a result of a pri