Posts from June 2, 2005

The sad transformation of a we company to a they company

The sad transformation of a we company to a they company

: Isn’t it ridiculous that Apple had to settle a class-action suit on its crappy iPod batteries, treating customers as enemies.

Oh, they are different

Oh, they are different

: Saudis won’t even debate whether to let women drive:

All he was asking, says Mohammad al-Zulfa, was that his fellow legislators think – just think – about studying the possibility of allowing women – not all of them, just some – to drive.

But circumspect though he was, he has touched off a fierce controversy, pitting women’s rights campaigners against conservatives who believe that lifting Saudi Arabia’s ban on women drivers is un-Islamic and will lead to permissiveness.

The Epic continues

The Epic continues

: Epic is a clever Flash saga about the future of news that every newsperson alive emails to fellow newspeople as if he or she were the first to discover it — and quickly, all those newspeople announce that they discovered it first. Well, let me be the first, second, or third to tell you that there’s now an epilogue in 2015 in which people start sharing GPS-tagged neighborhood broadcasts and after a nuclear digital winter of news, new reporting sprouts up.

: I didn’t know that the original Epic — by Robin Sloan, now web genius blogger at Current.TV, and Matt Thompson — was inspired by an argument over the oft-emailed Pong speech by my friend and now colleague Martin Nisenholtz. If you haven’t read that, do.

Outboxed

Outboxed

: Robert Greenwald, who made Outfoxed, is now going after Walmart and is asking the public for contributions of video and photo and stories and is recruiting people to be field producers and even to host screenings of the finished flick… and also, of course, he’s asking for money. Some way say it’s citizen journalism blowing the lid off the box with a smart mob, others may call it a new-media lynch mob. In any case, it’s a clever means of recruiting the audience to get behind the camera. To paraphrase Jay Rosen: Now the writers are readers, the readers are producers. [via Bill Doskoch]

: By the way, I hate shopping in Walmart — the place scares me viscerally — but I don’t think it’s evil just because it’s big. I also have — stupidly, perhaps — avoided buying Walmart stock because I believe that in the history of retail — see department store chains of the past and see most any consumer electronics chain — there has always been a tipping point when a chain gets too big. Will that day come for Walmart? I think it will tip of its own weight. That’s just a guess but that’s why I don’t think Walmart (or Clear Channel or Microsoft) is an evil empire that needs to be toppled. The market takes care of that.

.xxx

.xxx

: Icann has approved the .xxx domain for porn sites. It’s not a bad idea: It clearly labels porn for those who want it and lets those who don’t avoid it. But here’s one note of caution: Like the V-chip, the next argument will come when someone decides that a site with a nipple or an F word should be .xxx. But as long as it’s truly voluntary, it could be helpful.

Books are back

Books are back

: Tied to the start of BookExpo, the publishing convention (where I’m doing the blogboy dance today) The NY Times says that books are back with sales increasing (while movie ticket sales are declining). Could it be that the internet is making people read again (for now). Or could it just be that movies suck? Or could it be divine intervention:

In fact, for all the talk about the death of “old media” – that is, printed material like books – and the ascendancy of the new, digitally fueled media that rule the airwaves and cyberspace, Americans still spend more buying books than they do going to movies or buying recorded music, video games or DVD’s.

Consumer spending on books rose 8 percent, to nearly $21 billion, in the three years that ended in December….

The rebound has been fueled largely by the expanding popularity of religious-themed books like “The Purpose-Driven Life” and the “Left Behind” series of novels, as well as a new breed of mega-best-selling novels, some with religious overtones, like “The Da Vinci Code” and “The Five People You Meet in Heaven.”

Scarletlisting

Scarletlisting

: Jon Rintels of CreativesVoices.US emails on the Mˆtley Cr¸e suit over being banned by NBC because of the F word and the WCBS reporter who was fired for daring to utter the F word and he says:

I fear these bans and firings are becoming our eraís blacklisting, with the threat to our nationís children no longer “godless communism” but “godless pop culture.”

Well said. Protecting us from F words and nipples – it’s all part of an effort to control through demonization of some enemy within.

: They’re banning books, too. This case isn’t about F words or nipples, but about the lowly penis. Get the cultural airbrush out.

Those were the days, my friend, they thought they’d never end…

Those were the days, my friend, they thought they’d never end…

: Almost done cleaning out my office from a decade of memos and meetings. I’m saving next to none of it and that’s OK because in this world, yesterday is obsolete today. But I just came across a box of business cards that was good for lots of laughs: Many old companies that were determined to take over the world and acted like it in meetings in which they proclaimed that if we didn’t jump on board and quickly we’d be left in the dust. Well, here are a few cards I dusted off. Where are they now?… @Home… MCI… Spyglass… NetObjects…Netmarket… K2….BigBook…. Netscape…. New Century Network… Open Market… Zip2…. CompuServe…Infinet… MaMaMedia….AirMedia… CodeCorp… RedCart…. Scient… Go Network… WIDR.com… govWorks…. CueCat…