Monday, October 17, 2005

"When people aren't having any fun, they seldom produce good work. Kill grimness with laughter. Encourage exuberance. Get rid of sad dogs who spread gloom" David Ogilvy

Pulled a collection of Ogilvy from the bookcase (The Unpublished David Ogilvy) and it's a simply wonderful read. This being my tenth or so reading, Ogilvy remains fresh with exceptional insight which only serves to confirm Ogilvy's great mind, and the timeless nature of this writing. The notion that people need to have fun before good work happens is an important lesson indeed. My mentor and former partner Larry Bentson often asks "are you having fun?" at some point in almost every conversation. Larry understands that creative folks want to be led, never managed. So...are you having fun?

Robert Kaplan's Imperial Grunts is not getting the attention it deserves, a great read, much enjoyed his unvarnished take on the American military. What makes Kaplan's writing so crisp and refreshing seems to be a combination of his sense of history and a rare, vivid sense of place, one that only a truly gifted travel writer is able to conjure.

John Battelle's The Search is off to a terrific start. John's premise that search is "the database of our intentions" is elegant, brilliant!

Tom Evslin continues his very cool blook (sic),; Chapter Five, Episode 1 is up and live today, don't miss it if you can, jump to a good read here

Got a nice email from Lawrence Lessig. The first annual Fall Fundraising campaign for Creative Commons is now live and needs your support. Please join me in making a donation to this important initiative. Get the donation info here

The new Thomas P.M. Barnett book Blueprint for Action ships this week. While Publishers Weekly has slammed the new writing, I remain ready for another helping of Barnett's candor and pragmatic pov. His earlier book The Pentagon's New Map is a fresh, engaging read.

John Heilemann has a fun read about my favorite media mogul, Barry Diller...

Consider: When Diller, with Murdoch’s what-the-hell backing, started the Fox network, he was up against a troika—ABC, NBC, and CBS—with virtually 100 percent of the prime-time audience. The Big Three had deep pools of talent, vast resources, and a hammerlock on national advertisers. To any sane observer, they looked granite-solid, impregnable.

Fast-forward to today and it’s déjà vu all over again. In the booming search business, you have another apparently indomitable Big Three in Google, Yahoo, and MSN. (AOL is No. 4, but everyone assumes, Dick Parsons’s protestations notwithstanding, it will soon become an appendage of either Google or Microsoft.) The new Big Three account for 83 percent of Web searches. Having developed a ludicrously profitable form of advertising, they are making money by the bucketload. They have deep pools of talent, vast resources, and, as they are quick to tell you, impossibly high IQs.

Bravo John, excellent article! For my money Barry Diller is the goods, the real deal. Read John's entire writing Diller's Foxy Strategy here

For those that have emailed me about Seth Godin's NAB presentation, please standby, will opine on things NAB later this week. The headline is...demosthenic Godin was not, imho, perhaps an off day.

Elizabeth Spiers gets a book deal! Cheers! And They All Die in the End, very cool, check the notice here