Founder of ITDatabase
This was a good read.
One of the aspects of PR that I find interesting is just how much more divergent everyone's goals are today. I think ten years ago you could truly say that journalists were predominately interested in serving readers, and the most successful PR pros were consistently those who could weave their clients into those narratives and add value to the readers. To a much higher degree today, IMHO, tech writers are merely preening for pageviews as opposed to truly serving readers with substantive education or truth telling. Publishers are clawing desperately for revenues. Readers are swimming in too much content and not enough time to read or care. When it's deteriorated to the most base level race for pageviews and dollars (and events and sponsorships account for so much of publishers' revenues), and when outstanding journalism has been so severely devalued, the floodgates open for all types of seedy behavior. Having some spine and keeping clients walking an honorable path really is critical.
I personally find paid placements (that are noted as such) a lot less frightening than the behind the scenes stuff. Investors whose portfolio co's are disproportionately / more consistently favorably written about by top tier publications and other invisible string pulling stuff like that. B/c that stuff is rampant right now.
7 months, 3 weeks ago on Should PR pay to play?
And I just want to add - why are these showers being diverted from the homeless to begin with? Instead of shuttling them all over the place, doesn't it make more sense to just leave them parked by where they get maximum usage? Every time I used to see a BART train go by, it just really bummed me out, because I'd think - there went an opportunity, for a nice, warm shower. It just sickens me to hear all this talk about making those things move around the city again. We should be talking about shampoo, and soap, and drains, and steam. Typical conservative media, subverting the real issues in favor of the knee-jerk. Ohhhh ... "transportation to work" ... let's just hit people with the fear mongering. It's really disgusting, people.
8 months ago on And you thought SF cabs were bad? BART strike is crippling fledgling mid-market tech corridor
I'm confused, I thought SF's public transportation priority was turning fleet vehicles into homeless showers? What's all this talk of people getting to work? Aren't we losing sight of the real issues here, like figuring out how to get aroma therapy and massage integrated into those things? Maybe if these working 1%'s would focus more on handing out terri cloth robes in the shower areas and less on whining about "getting to work" this town would run a little more efficiently.
@FAKEGRIMLOCK not disputing the principle but saying in some ways I think it oversimplifies the reality that you have to dig through a bunch of crap to find the truths. It's like the saying that I didn't have time to write you a short letter so I wrote you a long one. On the path you encounter a lot of customers who want you to build the same exact shitty competitor products you started the company to displace - that is not very useful feedback when you have a grander ultimate vision (that may be 100% green field) and a limited amount of resources and time. But what do I know? GRIMLOCK is the ultimate predator, ridiculous IQ AND a high emotional IQ (fucking unstoppable). I'm just a human being.
1 year, 1 month ago on How the Lean Startup idea went from idiotic to overhyped
@FAKEGRIMLOCK Lean startup is hard to achieve at onset. Takes some thrashing and whittling down. Complicated is easy. Simple is hard. Not everybody have brainpower to be lean out of the starting gate.
More concerning than the supposed abuses of social power is the idea that social following indicates any measure of power or influence. Any moron can acquire 20k followers, and any moron with a ton of time on their hands can acquire 100k or more. It's sad that the collective ego is so fragile that so many immediately felt this burning requirement to amass a following. And it's pathetic that so many interpreted that as literal currency.
1 year, 1 month ago on Social media is a giant scam
@MattSchofield Look at the most regulated industries in the U.S. - telcos, energy, airwaves. As a consumer those are the industries you have the absolute fewest choices as a consumer. Need a landline in SF? AT&T. Need energy? PG&E. Need TV channels? DirecTV or Comcast. And with the regulation in mortgage lending, now even if you have perfect credit, large equity - you can't qualify for a loan if you started a business that isn't showing two years of consecutive profits yet, b/c that's how the govt drew up the standard for lending now. Brilliant. What heavily government regulated industry is actually pleasant for a consumer to interact with, where the actual citizens of the countries are best served?
Look at one of the most unfettered government regulation in the country - city of San Francisco. Parking tickets, astronomically high property taxes, some of the worst public schools in the Bay Area. Meanwhile the government's fervor is around outlawing happy meal toys (to fight childhood obesity) and providing the best possible services to drug addicts. That's what happens when it goes unchecked in the other direction. It becomes completely inhospitable for citizens when every possible thing that can be regulated or penalized is - all to feed the beast, under the auspicies of protecting the general population.
1 year, 4 months ago on Travis Shrugged: The creepy, dangerous ideology behind Silicon Valley’s Cult of Disruption
@MattSchofield putting capitalism in the same string as facism and nazism? Wow. I'd argue that corporate greed is of far less concern than a government that has to prey on its citizens to support itself. People have the option of who they do business with - they do not have the option to excuse themselves from taxes.
Re: "The biggest gripe about LinkedIn is how much do you need it if you aren’t looking for a job."
LinkedIn is a fantastic research tool for B2B sales research. Beats the hell out of any data you can find on Data.com, ZoomInfo, Hoovers and n- number of other tools. People are self populating their titles and relationships within the co's they work at - when you're on the outside and trying to figure out which door to knock on, LinkedIn is tough to beat.
1 year, 6 months ago on Boring Old Yelp May Prove the LinkedIn of Local
Yelp has indeed become a surprisingly useful service that has a very strong brand familiarity. I initially wrote it off as extortion - here's a page about your restaurant, here are some negative comments, cozy up to us so you can create a positive presence. But it's turned out to be pretty damn useful.
It suffers the same Amazon book reviews effect though - where you can predictably throw out the top comments (owners / employees), throw out the bottom comments (militant vegan subaru drivers who piss and moan about their side order of cottage cheese not being cold enough, and everything else that crosses their path) - and you have to find the truth somewhere in the middle.
But a surprisingly strong run and no clear sign of slowing down. They sure caught Zagat slipping and kicked their ass on the web.
I think the app is well designed. I find the public aspect very strange - after selecting "tell wife I love her" to test it out - it was a bit odd to get "Props" in an email message shortly thereafter from some dude I've never met before. But I like the design of the app, the concept, the workflow for selecting goals and marking things as complete.
I just think the hurdle to avoid an iPhone app being buried / forgotten is incredibly high. I've already gone through that exercise many times with many different task manager apps, and I'm not sure how Props will not suffer a similar fate as the rest.
1 year, 6 months ago on Can Lift Make the Human Race Cleaner, Fitter, and Nicer?
Ultimately I could give a shit about the bickering between these two. Ultimately all that matters is which is the better commenting platform. Based on my experience trying to configure both on WordPress, I found that LiveFyre does an infinitely better job of harvesting the Twitter "reactions" than Disqus (who I had problems with, pinged for help, and did not hear back from within 15 hours). Disqus has a bunch of wishy washy talk in their documentation about how the are subject to search issues on Twitter and blah blah blah. LiveFyre immediately picked up the same Tweets that Disqus missed.
Both have super easy installations. Both have similar threaded conversations. Disqus misses data that Livefyre picks up on Twitter.
Am I missing anything in my evaluation?
1 year, 6 months ago on He Said, He Said: The Disqus-LiveFyre Feud on Display in — What Else? — the Comments
Dittoe that for OfficeMax.
1 year, 6 months ago on Best Buy Needs to Fund the Hardware Revolution by Launching a Kickstarter Competitor
Cool video. Proportionate to how great their products are, Atlassian is WAY under discussed by North American tech media.
1 year, 7 months ago on PandoList: Australian Entrepreneurs
FWIW, I think the tech media world could use less of these "lists". I've seen plenty that have crowned "winners" with absolutely zero qualification or analysis. That's not directed @ Pando Lists, but all lists. Lists and rankings have infested tech content. If there's no actual careful analysis (most are purely linkbait), what's the point? With all due respect to whatever awesome lists may have been generated by Pando Lists, I'm not sure the tech world is going to care about the absence of another list generator. You stood up against embedding vendor videos in stories, but I'd argue that unqualified / unresearched lists and rankings (again, not directing that @ here specifically, but categorically) are much more detrimental to tech content today.
1 year, 7 months ago on A Sad Goodbye to the PandoList and Amanda Schwab
@mj4lifer @davidpayne11 I've been critical of some posts here before, and without a doubt there is some grandstanding that goes on that I find obnoxious - but who gives a shit what the motivations were behind this post, or how it was framed? It's the founder of the company putting some context around an editorial decision that affects readers. The "huge disappointment" traffic comment is obvious bait to try to draw a reaction. How long has this site been around? Six months? By my count it's a couple of ticks away from passing some IT trade pubs that have been around for 15 years. There are some things happening here that are working, and others that are not - like any startup. Seems like the person steering the ship has a right to comment freely, right?
It's not every day that you hear a candid explanation of why a section was dropped and the exact phrase "lasers gonads off of worms" in the same article.
@mcarney Guilty. I read most of this (not all of it) before going to the comments section. I completely missed the second to last bullet. It was sort of easy to lose interest after the first 90% of wrist slapping. Original impression still stands, which is that it strikes me as poor taste / mean spirited to jump in the fray after the big fish has already touched things off. And really? Pando Daily is the tech journalism / ethics police?
1 year, 7 months ago on Burning Questions for the New York Times About That Fake WikiLeaks Op-Ed
Is it a coincidence that this Nick Bilton zinger comes right after Arrington's Uncrunched criticizing different piece from Bilton? http://uncrunched.com/2012/07/29/craigslist-and-silicon-valley-greatly-offends-the-ny-times/. A nice, safe time to jump in and score.
I enjoyed this.
Sure, you CAN have it all. Much in the same way that you can eat whatever you want without getting fat (so long as you run 10 miles per day).
As a father of two and a founder of a startup (all roughly happened at the same time), I think the challenge of children / life balance is far more complicated than just the biological child / parent link. The responsibility of children runs wild in your brain and starts claiming synapses and cells that were once applied towards problem solving and selfish interests. Not to be one of those "you couldn't possibly understand unless you have kids" folks - but that peace of mind you had before you had kids, it's just never the same after.
I respect mothers who hold onto their work passion and figure out a way to make it all work. It's remarkable.
Not that you were suggesting the contrary, but it's also pretty tough to be a present father and achieve at work. They seem to be opposing forces. Not in the same ballpark in degree of difficulty, but difficult nontheless.
1 year, 7 months ago on Being a “Momtrepreneur” Is Hard. So Is Everything Else in the World. Let’s Move On.