Where in the world
: Holovaty loves Google maps but even so has lots of suggestions.
: Corante expands its ever-expanding roster of damned smart media biz blogs with a new one on branding.
Eason on FoxNews
: Got a call from Fox for a segment on Eason Jordan. Could not do it… was on a plane. Surprised Fox did not jump on this earlier with competitive glee… or perhaps they wanted to wait until someone else jumped first.
The Sunshine State
: I look out my window from the hotel near Ft. Myers, FL, and it’s the damnedest sight: high-rises pop up out of the palm grove and swamps like mistakes in a game of SimCity.
: I’m waiting to get on the plane now and there are nine — nine! — wheelchairs coming off, plus two walkers.
: I wouldn’t buy About. Not that I could afford it but… If you were starting About.com today, you wouldn’t create a centralized marketplace of cheap content; you wouldn’t hire a bunch of people (even at serf wages) to create the content. Instead, it would make much more sense to start a network of distributed media (yes, blogs): less cost, less risk, greater scale, greater diversity, stronger voice of the people….
I’ve said this to the man who started About and the man who bought it last time and they didn’t kick me in the shins.
PaidContent.org says The New York Times is the frontrunner to buy About. That makes sense if you’re a centralized marketplace of content trying to maintain that model, if you or your owners are scared of the distributed world. But the centralized marketplace — the channel, the portal, the conglomerate — is the thing of the past. Things of the past often buy each other when the past arrives.
: It’s Fat Tuesday: Time for my annual bit of bragging about my proudest professional accomplishment: Bourbocam!
Selling to the sellers
: At iMedia right now, Steve Rubel — bloggers’ best evangelist to the marketers — is now doing a wonderful job teaching a room filled with ad sellers and ad buyers how to embrace consumer control, even letting them create ads. “Meet George Masters,” he said as he showed this teacher’s iPod commercial. The room was wowed; applause broke out. Steve said George is looking for work and I’ll just bet he gets hired.
Prudes on parade
: Thirty-three members of Congress sent a letter to President Bush begging him to hire a real prude as the nextr chairman of the FCC. Daily Variety has the letter (it’s behind a wall) but Brian Linse has excerpts from the story:
The letter arrived at the White House after Bush told a C-SPAN interviewer last week that parents should play the primary role in protecting children from indecent material. “While we acknowledge the importance of parental controls over children’s viewing habits,” the letter said, “Hollywood and certain media companies work to ensure that children are exposed to it whether they or their parents like it or not.” …
“The next FCC chairman will oversee an important time in our nation’s history, and they must be ready to aggressively enforce the laws that Congress has passed. We encourage you to nominate an individual of boldness, strength, and vision who will continue the work already begun. We must not let immorality become normalized nor federal laws ignored.”
The letter originated as a collaborative effort between Reps. Joe Pitts (Pa.) and Charles Pickering (Miss.). Among others signing it were Dave Weldon (Fla.), Steve King (Iowa) and Jim Ryun (Kan.). No Democrats signed it.
Get this: “We must not let immorality become normalized.” That’s not your job, boys. Run the government. Our morality is our business. I feel like sending them all a framed copy of the First Amendment.
But I’m glad to see them nervous, for Bush is more reasonable than they are; he knows that parenting is a parent’s job. Sure, he’ll sign the indecent indecency legislation rushing through Congress. But by this, I hope he’s not ready to name Pat Robertson to the FCC.
This is what Bush said on C-Span:
As a free speech advocate, I often told parents who were complaining about content, you’re the first line of responsibility; they put an off button on the TV for a reason. Turn it off.
Listen to your leader, boys.
When I sent them the First Amendment, I’ll enclose a universal remote control.
: And this is the legislation these self-appointed national nannies are about to pass:
The maximum fines now run $32,500 per incident but would jump to $500,000. The fine for a performer would jump from $11,000 to $500,000, and the Federal Communications Commission regulation that requires an individual to first receive a warning would be repealed.