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Voices from the Web

Dear Insiders,
The Web is learning to speak. "Alexa" and her friends will stand ready to help us as personal virtual assistants on everyday tasks. Privacy becomes an illusion – and many young people, who only go online with their mobile phones, will no longer know about the existence of a World Wide Web. And: Platforms like will disappear! Why that will be and why we now stand before the next huge technological leap forward is explained today by Prof Dieter Fensel from the University of Innsbruck in an interview conducted by Fred Fettner.
In a second article, Fred also shows: In future, Artificial Intelligence will determine the room rate! In distribution in the tourism sector – among the tourism associations, the "Destination Management Organisations" (DMO), the technological fight for travellers has begun. Here too, it's fundamentally about algorithms, which are to drive business. Tourism associations want to form the counterweight to booking portals like today.
Corporate PR managers or their PR agents are today on permanent look-out for the flower in the swamp of bloggers. Though they wouldn't choose such negative language the non-professionals convey emotion and provide attractive images of hotels, thereby doing part of the hotel(group)'s marketing work. Follower numbers are for most PR professionals not the decisive factor though. And the boundary between blogging and surreptitious advertising is quite fluid, as Baerbel Schwertfeger found out.
And in other news: Following the acquisition of the Finnish Restel Hotels, Scandic becomes Scandinavia's chain giant. The EU Commission once again makes recommendations for the Sharing Economy. STR and Google have analysed the correlation between search and bookings. TrustYou has discovered what communication channels guests prefer. And German companies have never spent as much on their business travellers as they did in 2016, but they continue to save on hotel costs. Nevertheless, hotels continue to expand. And last but not least Novum has now presented its new signature brand "niu".


Yours, Maria Puetz-Willems, Editor-in-Chief


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