Tuesday, July 31, 2007

"One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one's work is terribly important." Bertrand Russell

"From birth to age 18, a girl needs good parents; from 18 to 35 she needs good looks; from 35 to 55 she needs a good personality; and from 55 on she needs cash." Sophie Tucker

"Tradition is what you resort to when you don't have the time or the money to do it right." Kurt H. Adler

From the open letter to Dow Jones shareholders by
Brad Greenspan...
Every company and individual makes strategic mistakes over a long career. It always happens. But the big winners historically are the companies/individuals that learn from these mistakes, make changes, and have the courage to make another bet on themselves, their employees, and their portfolio of assets." The entire text here (WSJ sub). Over at CNBC, The Brain (aka David Faber), says the deal with Murdoch will be signed tonight.

400 year death spiral continues: Dead tree guys keep selling those ads. September fashion books are setting record high ad pages. Harper's - 360, W - 477, Elle - 598, Vogue - 727 (incl Fashion Rocks supplement in both Vogue and W estimates).

Mixing metaphors: Tom Asacker offers up a good post on brands, marketing and metaphors...

"It is compelling, and much simpler, to view a brand as a fixed and valuable asset, like a piece of real estate. One that simply requires protection and promotion. Instead, today's brands should be thought of as perishable assets, like salad bars. They are marketplace offerings, which need to be constantly reinvented and refreshed to remain relevant. Make no mistake about it. That's the metaphor change that will turn marketers into leaders." Read Tom's entire post here. Kudos Tom, well said. Brands are alive in the moment and related within the context of a dynamic marketplace. Winning brands are not static. The best brands are much more like fashion than architecture, soft v hard, alive v dead, moving picture v snap shot.

The Sumner show - Les is more: Q2 CBS earnings call this morning. Sumner set the stage, introducing Les as the "best executive in the media industry." Les said "technology is our friend" going on to chat up the last.fm acquisition ("a community around content") and other interactive initiatives. In his division by division review Les praised Dan Mason for his "swift and decisive changes" related to the radio group's New York portfolio saying that Dan was a "programmer at heart." Les indicated the NFL cpms are up double digits. Scatter up consistently. Same TV station sales down Q2 (taking out NCAA - flat). Les on Google radio and TV inventory sharing: "We're in discussion with everybody over everything, all the time." On the balance sheet - $2.8Bil in cash. My sense is Les is doing a great job. Thanks to Dan Mason, CBS Radio should enjoy a great 08.

Bonus: searchCrystal. Compare, remix, share. Very cool.

Congrats & cheers: Rob Barnett launches his new venture My Damn Channel. But wait, there's more - throwing down with Rob are Harry Shearer, David Wain, Paul Reiser and Don Was. Okapi Venture Capital is backing. CBS Radio's Mark Edwards, delivers good books for KEZK and KYKY. Elizabeth Guider named top editor at The Hollywood Reporter.

Monday, July 30, 2007

"I'm impressed with people from Chicago. Hollywood is hype, New York is talk, Chicago is work." Michael Douglas

"I don't want any yes-men around me. I want everybody to tell me the truth even if it costs them their jobs." Samuel Goldwyn

"If people don't want to come out to the ball park, nobody's going to stop them." Yogi Berra

Tom Snyder
passed away yesterday. "Fire up a colortini, sit back, relax, and watch the pictures, now, as they fly through the air." More here. The respected broadcaster started his career as a radio reporter in hometown Milwaukee. Tom is featured on the Broadcast Pioneers of Philadelphia site here. He worked at KYW when Al Primo created the Eyewitness News concept, Tom anchored the noon show. Perhaps Steve Dahl will favor us with his Tomorrow story.

Fixing Yahoo!: "I would try to match Google on basic search -- which it sort of manages to do today -- but focus more on emerging media like audio, video, mobile and local. [A lot of] growth will be there. Yahoo's biggest problem in search today is perception on the part of consumers and advertisers. On the consumer side, search quality is comparable, but Google enjoys significant brand advantages. On the advertiser side, the problem is far more than just perception. Clicks from the Google network convert to purchases at a higher rate than at Yahoo" Read Some Free Advice for Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang via Knowledge@Wharton here.

Len Brody, CEO of NowPublic via GigaOM: "“I’m not a believer in local anymore,” said Brody. “I used to think that hyperlocal was what mattered to people, but for 35 and under especially, the concept of local is very different. Like Facebook publishing the news feed… it’s changed from hyperlocal to hyperpersonal.” Weather, traffic, and crime are important, but they’re commodities, he said, adding local politics might be the exception, but nobody cares about them anymore." Kudos to Liz Gannes, well done. Read the interview here. My sense is Brody is discovering "local" is very, very difficult. It only looks easy. It ain't.

Fallon's Future: B&C's Ben Grossman sez Jimmy Fallon tops the short list to succeed Conan. NBC's late night skipper Rick Ludwin says he doesn't expect to make an announcement until next year. More here.

Read any good books lately? Kevin Weatherly, KROQ and KCBS-FM ranked top ten 25-54. Paul Goldstein, KTWV top ten 25-54. Brian Kelly, tops target demo rankers at 1037 KISS FM and WMYX.

Congrats & cheers: Sarah Fay named CEO, Scott Sorokin named prexy at the new Carat. Trip Reeb named prexy and CEO of San Diego's Finest City. Chef John Hogan and managing partner Peter de Castro on their new venture Tavern at The Park, opening tomorrow in Chicago.

Saturday, July 28, 2007

Photo: Red Storm Rising by autumnleaf Beautiful shot. Thank you.

"To give real service you must add something which cannot be bought or measured with money, and that is sincerity and integrity." Donald A. Adams

"Excellence is an art won by training and habituation. We do not act rightly because we have virtue or excellence, but we rather have those because we have acted rightly. We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act but a habit." Aristotle

"Our business in life is not to get ahead of others but to get ahead of ourselves - to break our own records, to outstrip our yesterdays by our today, to do our work with more force than ever before." Stewart B. Johnson

What Twitter is: Dave Winer...

"People who say that Twitter hasn't figured out how to make money don't understand the role technology companies play in the much larger media and communication ecosystem. Ideas gestate here, grow up, find users, and then find customers. In a way Twitter is a mega-enterprise product, and by using it, we're helping them prove it." Bravo Dave, well said. Dave's post here.

Get out of the way:Michael Rosenblum on the CNN - YouTube debates...

"A few days ago, CNN started running a promo in which CNN News VP David Bohrman and a few producers sat at a table in front of laptops. “We’ve gotten hundreds of questions so far” says Bohrman, “and we have to pick the best ones to ask”.


Why does David Bohrman (or anyone for that matter) have to pick the best questions, or any questions. Why not just post all the video questions on the web and let the public decide which ones they like the best.

In the online world, David Bohrman, (or anyone else doing this) simply gets in the way of the process. The beauty of the web is that it does not need, nor does it want ‘executive producers’ or ‘vice presidents’. Neither would I want David Bohrman to be on Amazon.com deciding which of the thousands of books available we will be offering tonight.

Go home.

The same goes for Anderson Cooper.

Get out of the way.

The CNN/Youtube debates were a start, but only a start. We are halfway there. New technologies arrive, but we cannot help ourselves but to plug them into old and tired architectures for delivery."

Kudos Michael! Your reading is spot-on, outstanding! Read his post here FYI - Nielsen estimate of viewership was an average of 2.6Mil; compare with 2.8Mil viewers for the June non-YouTube CNN New Hampshire Dem debate and the May Fox GOP debate at 2.5Mil. The CNN-YouTube debate did set a new record for 18-34 cable debate viewing, an average of 407,000. Contrast with the 3.1Mil viewers tuned in to Larry King's Paris Hilton interview. LATER: In comments Dan Kelley adds "CNN: Why not start with picking the most common questions first?" Good point Dan; let's play the hits. My take is let the folks vote the vids up and down digg style. Whatever, Michael is on the mark here; we don't need no stinkin VP, EP, MC and crew to judge and select the videos. Vox populi!

Must see video: My favorite military strategist, Thomas P.M. Barnett, delivers his PNM talk at TED (2005) here. Dr Barnett rocks! Also - check out his blog here. Highly recommended.

Don't Fill Up Your Cup: The Power of a Little Less
. From chapter six of the book Chasing Cool by Noah Kerner and Gene Pressman. Amazon info. Blog. A good airplane read.

  • Stay focused on a vision but remain open to inspiration from everywhere
  • Begin with one great idea that's better than the alternatives
  • Develop a total aesthetic but always leave room for surprises
  • Borrow equity authentically and share at the same time
  • Take big risks with a healthy dose of risk management
  • Become Goliath but always behave like David
  • Keep differentiating your company...keep people coming back for more

Bonus: LibraryThing. Thanks to Dave Weinberger for the tip. What is the meaning of technology in our lives? Kevin Kelly responds The Technium and the 7th Kingdom here.

Thank you very much: Appreciate you stopping by. Top ten visits by country: USA, Australia, UK, Canada, Ireland, Belgium, Germany, India, South Korea and Brazil. Five most e-mailed posts: Drake & Sklar, A Great General Manager, Allan Stagg, STAR, Jockless oldies. (analytics from the last thirty days)

Congrats & cheers: The new crew at TVNewser. Moving into the house that Brian built: Chris Ariens (editor), Gail Shister (contributor), Diane Clehane (contributor), and Alissa Krinsky (writer).

Friday, July 27, 2007

"What helps luck is a habit of watching for opportunities, of having a patient, but restless mind, of sacrificing one's ease or vanity, of uniting a love of detail to foresight, and of passing through hard times bravely and cheerfully." Charles Victor Cherbuliez

"One nice thing about silence is that it can't be repeated." Gary Cooper

"We are shaped and fashioned by what we love." Goethe

Fortune senior writer Marc Gunther checks in on how the dead tree guys are moving from print to the web. Marc looks at efforts ongoing at WaPo...

"What lies ahead for the Post seems to be a long and painful transition from print - so important to local advertisers that the newspaper could raise prices almost at will - to the Internet, where competition for readers and advertisers is brutal. The best evidence of the difference is the fact that advertisers paid about $573 million last year to reach readers of the company's newspapers, predominantly the 673,900 daily and 937,700 Sunday subscribers to the Post. Advertisers paid only about $103 million to reach the eight million unique visitors to the Post's Web sites each month."

Good reporting Marc, kudos. Read Can the Washington Post survive? here.

"The Internet's dead. It's over...The Internet is for old people." so says Mark Cuban during his talk at CTAM. Read more here. Give him ten points for playing to the room.

At a party last night a big discussion about the "third pipe" (i.e., 1) telco, 2) cable, 3) wireless). Friends who work for the telcos are opposed to any involvement by Google in the 700Mhz space. This tells me Google must be on to something. Richard Whitt offers up the Google pov here.

Thank you very much: Gary R. White, president and CEO of Kentucky Broadcasters for sending me a gift of Kentucky bourbon, some handmade Maker's Mark. Gary was the gentleman who invited me to speak at the Broadcast Futures Summit earlier this month.

"They wouldn't know a real threat to their freedom until it interrupted the power source to their X Box and killed a half a million people." A new video from the still dead General George S Patton here. Credit goes to writer and voice talent Mike Kaminski.

Bonus: Google's Nick Fox and Diane Chang on how Google's ad quality score improves the user experience. Read the Gord Hotchkiss interview here. Good job Gord.

Red wine: Borsao Crianza 2004. Spanish red blend, 50% Grenache, 25% Tempranillo, 25% Cabernet Sauvignon. Ten months in French and American oak. About $11, drinks like a good $40 bottle. Highly recommended. Cheers.

Congrats & cheers: Mark Thompson and his BBC team on the launch of their new player. Kevin Johnson and the Microsoft Platforms and Services crew on their acquisition of AdECN.

Thursday, July 26, 2007

"Zeal without knowledge is like fire without a grate to contain it; like a sword without a hilt to wield it by; like a high-bred horse without a bridle to guide him. It speaks without thinking, acts without planning, seeks to accomplish a good end without the adoption of becoming means." Julius Bate

"Experience is the universal mother of sciences." Miguel de Cervantes

"The use of a thing is only a part of its significance. To know anything thoroughly, to have the full command of it in all its appliances, we must study it on its own account, independently of any special application." Goethe

Brilliant on the basics: CBS Radio's Mark Edwards
pulled one out of the Gordon McLendon playbook yesterday. A totally unexpected stunt. His KEZK "Christmas in July" food drive generated big word of mouth, created awareness for the St Louis area foodbank, encouraged online foodbank donations and generated earned media. KMOV (CBS), KTVI (Fox) both sent shooters to the station and ran packages in their 10 shows. Kudos to Mark & crew. Ryan Farmer also gets a nod, the KEZK marketing maven came up with the idea. Bravo Ryan.

Holding a clinic on great radio: Jerry Schnacke
is doing an outstanding job leading the Bonneville Chicago stations. WTMX and WDRV are two of the best stations in the nation. WTMX creator Barry James continues to build the groups third property, Love FM (WILV). The Bonneville Chicago team deserves high marks for doing things right.

Irrational exuberance redux: R.H. Donnelley buys business.com domain name for $345Mil.

Congrats & cheers: Doug Podell, the Doc of Rock, and his WRIF team on another great book. Eric & Kathy, WTMX, continuing to set the gold standard in Chicago morning radio. Johnny B getting it done for Emmis in Chicago and delivering an excellent book. Steve Mitgang named chief executive of Veoh Networks.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

"Good advice is never cheap, cheap advice is never good." Johnny Martin

"The love of study, a passion which derives fresh vigor from enjoyment, supplies each day and hour with a perpetual source of independent and rational pleasure." Edward Gibbon

"To help the young soul, to add energy, inspire hope, and blow the coals into a useful flame; to redeem defeat by new thought and firm action, this, though not easy, is the work of divine men." Emerson

Today's photo: The legendary Steve Dahl. Congrats and cheers to Steve and crew on another #1 book (25-54M). Steve's show also posted a top five performance 25-54A. Hey, nice package. The ratings delivery of programming on before Steve continues to lag far behind Steve's winning performance. The anomaly moves forward unabated...an entire Chicago radio station kept alive, saved in fact, by one show, one star. Amazing. Some earlier posts on Steve here, here and here. Bravos Steve!

"The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the man who can't read them." Mark Twain

"Bed is the poor man's opera." Italian proverb

"You'd be surprised how much it costs to look this cheap." Dolly Parton

In all trades and professions there is a hierarchy. From the very best to the beginners, novices and amateurs. Yesterday, during a conference call someone asked if there was any real material difference, any honest distinction between one seasoned major market talent and another. My thought was, yes, of course. Let's take radio as one example (without respect to the valued talent working in news and other specialty reporting):

Personality------------Voice Actor
Disc Jockey-------Talk Host-------VO Talent

At the top of the art are the stars. Very rare. Perhaps 2% or less of those working.

The next level are the truly exceptional, the gifted personalities and voice actors. Rare. Perhaps 10% of those at work. The disc jockeys and talk hosts have become personalities. The vo talent have become voice actors.

The next level is the largest group, something like 70% of the professionals. The starting point is announcer, about 18% of those at work. While there are announcers who become stars as announcers it is the most rare of all exceptions. Today many of the best announcers become successful vo talent. These are the voices you hear most often doing imaging or other voice work at the majority of radio and tv stations across the country who hire a "voice." They are those called to voice national spot.

Some percentage of announcers never "graduate" to being successful disc jockeys or talk hosts or vo talent; they may be assigned to those duties but they simply do not measure up with those who have reached the next level of skill, ability and performance. They may maintain the lowest or minimum proficiency within the second level or hold a position among the best of announcers.

This certainly holds true of each level. There are many outstanding personalities and very good talk show hosts who for one or more reasons never become stars. Some successful voice actors make very good money but 2% (or less) are stars and stand to become rich. At every level beyond announcer there is some single digit percentage best of class. These folks are happy in their work, they live in their comfort zone.

There are stars in markets of all sizes. There are stars that choose to sit out the competitive noise, the grind of the endless major market marathon. Some make very good money and live large in smaller metros. These are the stars that prefer lifestyle and in some cases the content of family over the bright lights and big bucks.

Sadly, we also lose stars and folks with amazing star potential when they leave the business, become ill, injured or pass away too early without reaching their full potential, their deserved destiny.

Compensation (and in some cases earning potential) and talent, skill, ability are imperfectly correlated. There are those working at the top of one level being paid more or less than their peers. Some stars die broke. Some disc jockeys retire rich. An announcer friend filed a two comma tax return last year. A wealthy individual whose voice you will perhaps never hear on a movie trailer or in a national commercial. This announcer happens to be an exceptionally gifted narrator and also does work in the international educational video game market (teaching and learning tools).

Finally, experience has taught me the popular notion that "there is no one out there" is totally false. It's the canard most often proffered by hacks. This is a leadership problem. A line by the hand of the great Jonathan Swift comes to mind. "When a true genius appears in this world, you may know him by this sign, that the dunces are all in confederacy against him." One need only look at the popular music charts to realize new stars happen all the time. Consider Idol. True, the star maker machinery behind the popular song (thanks Joni) is not fair, nor does it always recognize, or reward the best talent. No matter, there are rising stars out there. Catch one.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

"There is no such thing as a good script, only a good film, and I'm conscious that my scripts often read better than they play." Alan Bennett

"The cinema is not a craft. It is an art. It does not mean team work. One is always alone; on the set as before the blank page." Jean-Luc Godard

"We are all actors now...Everyone in America now explains a moment in their lives by saying, 'It was like a scene out of...'" Peggy Noonan

Today's image: Thinker by Ron Fell. Thank you so much Ron!

With the books rolling out there is lots to think about. Kudos to Rick Martini and his Fresh 102.7 FM team on a fine showing. Back in the threes (and #8 25-54A, #7 25-54W) where those 7th Avenue guys belong. Joel Hollander greenlighted Fresh but will not be remembered for it. Cheers to WSKQ #1 25-54. Congrats to Z100 #2 12+ repeating that 4.6 Winter posting and to K-Rock #14 to #5 25-54 men. WAXQ #2 25-54 men.

Buzz: Hearst to acquire UGO.com for over $100 Mil. UGO.com is a collection of sites targeting young men.

He's back: Dave Winer offers up Why Feedburner is trouble, day 2. You decide.

Dems on CNN: For all the fuss about the game-changing YouTube questions, the answers were just more of the same. These are not debates but candidate press conferences. Too short on substance. Not enough interaction between candidates. C+ to MC Anderson.

Back to the future: WCKG, Chicago from Free FM back to the original Reid Reker branding The Package. Congrats to Steve Dahl, the evangelist of this move. (Stever's take on Tammy Faye here.)

Bonus: A Group Is Its Own Worst Enemy - Clay Shirky. Thanks to Hugh for the tip.

This talk is in three parts. The best explanation I have found for the kinds of things that happen when groups of humans interact is psychological research that predates the Internet, so the first part is going to be about W.R. Bion's research, which I will talk about in a moment, research that I believe explains how and why a group is its own worst enemy.

The second part is: Why now? What's going on now that makes this worth thinking about? I think we're seeing a revolution in social software in the current environment that's really interesting.

And third, I want to identify some things, about half a dozen things, in fact, that I think are core to any software that supports larger, long-lived groups." The entire writing here.

Let us now praise editors: An excellent writing by Gary Kamiya via Salon. My thanks to programming ace Tom Teuber for the tip...

"The truth is, you have to learn how to be edited just as much as you have to learn how to edit. And learning how to be edited teaches you a lot about writing, about distance and objectivity and humility, and ultimately about yourself...The art of editing is running against the cultural tide. We are in an age of volume; editing is about refinement. It's about getting deeper into a piece, its ideas, its structure, its language. It's a handmade art, a craft. You don't learn it overnight. Editing aims at making a piece more like a Stradivarius and less like a microchip. And as the media universe becomes larger and more filled with microchips, we need the violin makers." Read the entire writing with letters (comments) here.

The Greatest Hits of The '60s, '70s ... And '80s? Sean Ross writes about WCBS-FM, the oldies format and that pesky question of eras here. Bravo Sean, well done! Cohort replacement is a beautiful thing.

Congrats & cheers: Jay Gould and Aaron Cohn on their now out of beta WikiYou. Farday Media on today's launch of their very cool new sidebar Particls.

Monday, July 23, 2007

"When the cat and mouse agree, the grocer is ruined." Persian proverb

"Television is a medium because anything well done is rare." Ernie Kovacs

"Nobody can make you feel inferior without your consent." Eleanor Roosevelt

The great radio star Fred Allen often gets credit for the Ernie Kovacs quotation above. Heard the attribution to each over the years. One of my favorite Allen lines is "Imitation is the sincerest form of television."

Obvious. Topical. Local.

The thesis first became known to me as one of the "Rules of Three." This one credited to the genius Robert Todd Storz, the wunderkind regarded as the first architect of Top 40 radio. Obvious, topical, local. The Storz Rule of Three. Good content is based in one or more of those three characteristics. On the day job, working with broadcast talent, we spend a considerable amount of time on storytelling issues. Great storytelling begins with good judgment, superior story selection - the right stories told in an engaging, arresting, memorable fashion.

The ultimate destination of the internet is local. Increasingly, our finding is the Storz Rule of Three serves as an excellent standard for online content. It works on and off line to wonderful effect. Obvious. Topical. Local.

Which reminds me of the legendary Bill Stewart and the counsel to talent during his run with the great Gordon McLendon organization. "Be funny, Be informative, or Be quiet."

Why Feedburner is trouble: Dave Winer offers a caution...

People at Microsoft used to say that Windows isn't ready to ship until Lotus doesn't run. That's not a typo. You'd think it would be the other way around, that a popular operating system would never hold the users of a popular spreadsheet hostage. But it could happen when they have their own spreadsheet and want you to switch. Or if they want everyone to put ads in their feeds. Who would miss a few blogs here and there, don't we all use Blogger anyway (that's one area where they haven't taken over, btw, thankfully)." Dave's entire post here. Scobleizer with comments here. Readers of this humble blog know, I heart Google and trust they will do the right thing.

Googling the FCC: Speaking of Google, Tom Evslin lends his pov to Google's 700Mhz auction offer...

"Two problems with the Google offer: at&t and Verizon hate it and it probably would result in the 700MHz auction bringing in somewhat less money (immediately) for the treasury than an alternative which would encourage the telcos to bid." Read Tom's post with back story here. Agree with Tom on this one. Bravo Tom, good writing!

What future for PBS? Michael Rosenblum writes...

"So the question become instead, what is the best role for PBS in a country where all the rest of TV is commercial and we pretty much refuse to fund it. PBS must contend itself with beggaring really, to corporations and communities. This is distasteful and a disgrace to our country, but that is the way it is at the moment. With their limited resources, and with the democratization of video exploding - and no major network really paying all that much attention, I think that the notion of publisher of quality (from ‘us out here with the cameras’) is a unique niche that PBS could quickly occupy. No one else is doing it."

Bravo Michael! Read his post with comments here.

: The Caffeinated Librarian. Lonesome Music. My thanks to the Blogger gang for the tips.

Congrats & cheers: Madison's own uber-cool Ben Sidran on his Talking Jazz box set. Highly recommended. More info here. Steve Coll named prexy of the New America Foundation. Marc Andreessen on the sale of his company, Opsware, to HP for $1.6 Bil. Vinny Brown and his WBLS crew posting #2 25-54 in the new book ahead of #3 WLTW! Jeff Siegel named VP, Home Entertainment (Americas) for FremantleMedia. Matthew Weiner on the debut of his very cool new original series Mad Men (AMC).

Sunday, July 22, 2007

"The key to a successful restaurant is dressing girls in degrading clothes." Michael O'Donoghue

"There are three reasons why lawyers are replacing rats as laboratory research animals. One is that they're plentiful, another is that lab assistants don't get attached to them, and third, there are some things rats just won't do." Norman Goldsmith

"If at first you don't succeed, find out if the loser gets anything." Bill Lyon

Suggest and sell

At the Best Buy checkout.

When a waiter takes your order (and after your entree).

After adding an item to your Amazon shopping cart.

The suggestion. The extended warranty, the wine choice, the popular side dish or dessert, the items purchased by others.

Suggestion is powerful. The timing, substance and value proposition of suggestions are key.

The best time to suggest a purchase is while the buyer is buying. Adding to a purchase, so-called up selling, takes advantage of the moment. Best Buy understands. The optimum moment to sell you an extended warranty is at the point of sale, never later.

Sell when they buy. Suggest and sell.

Relevant in the moment of purchase

The opportunity to suggest happens in the moment of purchase. When viewers or listeners are on your web site, watching or listening to your station they are spending time. In those moments you have gained some measure of attention. You need to suggest reasons to spend more time or reasons to return. This requires that your message be relevant in that moment of purchase. During the Sunday morning news shows we promote our political reporter or coming enterprise package. In the backsell we promote the upcoming concert of the artist just played and our related ticket giveaway.

On air we always drive them to the web for details.


We make it really, really easy to find stuff once they reach our main page. Our main page must make no more than three featured offers. Our main page must be designed to prompt action.

Most important take away from this post
: Measure every day, discover what's working, what's not working and constantly try fresh, new approaches. It is critically important for you to know, to fully understand, what's happening and what's not happening. Never guess. It's not horse shoes, grenades, slow dancing or bad breath (i.e., close does not count).

You have to make something happen. You must give them reasons to stay longer and reasons to come back. Prompt them to some action. Take full advantage of every opportunity.

Suggest and sell in the moment of purchase.

Today's image: Chardonnay by Thomas Hawk. Thank you very much.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

"What men want is not talent, it is purpose; in other words, not the power to achieve, but will to labor. I believe that labor judiciously and continuously applied becomes genius." Bulwer-Lytton

"Research is an organized method of finding out what you are going to do when you can't keep on doing what you are doing now." Charles Kettering

"As soon as true thought has entered our mind, it gives a light which makes us see a crowd of other objects which we have never perceived before." Francois de Chateaubriand

Understanding the merchant.

On the day job one of the missions is to help media sales organizations improve their performance. A key segment of revenue is local direct. As a practical matter producing local direct requires the participation of local merchants. Some insights...
  1. Merchants buy for a living.
  2. When merchants buy right, price right, display right (visual merchandising), when sales associates suggest and sell right then the sku flies out of the store.
  3. The most interesting subject in the world to the merchant is their business.
The first and third points are self evident but too often ignored. The second point involves the black art of proprietary calculus.

Bonus: Reality check. My thanks to programming ace Lee Arnold.

Totally cool waste of bandwidth: New York subway map of the internet.

Today's image: Green Path by chefranden. Wonderful shot. Thank you for sharing.

Friday, July 20, 2007

"It is the glorious prerogative of the empire of knowledge that what it gains it never loses. On the contrary, it increases by the multiple of its own power: all its ends become means; all its attainments help to new conquests." Daniel Webster

"The more an idea is developed, the more concise becomes its expression; the more a tree is pruned, the better is the fruit." Alfred Bougeart

"Make yourself necessary to somebody." Emerson

Last night Larry King interviewed Tammy Faye. The CNN video is available here. My sense is Larry (a former colleague) and his producers failed to exercise good judgment by putting the very fragile, cancer ravaged Tammy Faye on the show. Voyeuristic, sensational, exploitive. Without regard to her intentions or wishes in granting, or perhaps requesting, the interview (e.g., to say goodbye), someone should have done the right thing for Tammy Faye and prevented her on screen appearance. It seems to me this should have been a matter of preserving dignity, instead it became another example of the media's disregardful behavior. Shame on you Larry. When your last days are near my sincere hope is someone is there to look out for you, a producer that passes on the death's door get, a producer that does the right thing to preserve your memory, your dignity.

Congrats & cheers: Al Peterson announces his Talk Media Conference coming Q1 of 2008.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

"Leadership involves remembering past mistakes, an analysis of today's achievements, and a well grounded imagination in visualizing the problems of the future." Stanley C. Allyn

"We make way for the man who boldly pushes past us." Christian Bovee

"One of the greatest victories you can gain over a man is to beat him at politeness." Josh Billings


It's what separates the winner from every other player.

It's the dramatic difference! that Tom Peters rants about (thank you very much TP!).

It's the essence of the Rosser Reeves USP, the heart of the Trout & Ries positioning premise and the real secret of the Seth Godin purple cow.

Job one: Create Contrast

Creating contrast is, in fact, the single most critical factor in every winning political campaign. It's what Ailes gets, what Klein is doing his best to make happen and, clearly, what Abrams fails to grasp. In the last century we called it "integrity in the short listen" or "impact in the short viewing" or "perceptions on the first visit." They all hold true today. How exactly is your "brand" experience dramatically different (and memorable)?

In my experience (day jobs), creating contrast has been the key to producing winning results, truly remarkable achievements and progress, in every single broadcast, cable, online, political and retail endeavor where we have been fortunate to be involved.


Don't even consider winning your market without first thinking about, imagining, adopting and committing to a very serious contrast strategy.

20th century challenge: get better
21st century challenge: get different

Contrast! Remember the words of Emile Zola "I am here to live out loud."

Congrats & cheers: Balihoo raises $1.5 mil in their first round (they're looking for a biz dev person)

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

"Courage is a special kind of knowledge: the knowledge of how to fear what ought to be feared and how not to fear what ought not to be feared." David Ben-Gurion

"To lead the orchestra you must turn your back on the crowd." Johnny Martin

"Correction does much, but encouragement does more. Encouragement after censure is as the sun after a shower." Goethe

Required reading: Keen v Weinberger -
thanks WSJ. This round - advantage Dr Dave, it was ever thus, kudos! "The mainstream media's business model does not aim at nurturing talent. It aims at moving units. It therefore does exactly what you complain the Web does: It panders to the market. If you want to see the 'democratization' of talent you fear, just look at a Top 40 chart. There are bright spots, but you seem to have confused the mainstream media's handling of artists with apprenticing in Michelangelo's studio."

Dave ends his argument..."Yes, Andrew, we are amateurs on the Web, although there's plenty of room for professionals as well. But we are not replicating the mainstream media. We're building something new. We're doing it together. Its fundamental elements are not bricks of content but the mortar of links, and links are connections of meaning and involvement. We're creating an infrastructure of meaning, miscellaneous but dripping with potential for finding and understanding what matters to us. We're building this for one another. We're doing it by and large for free, for the love of it, and for the joy of creating with others. That makes us amateurs. And that's also what makes the Web our culture's hope."

We are blessed to have Dave in this conversation. My sense is Andrew is playing agent provocateur a bit too much. He's saying things simply to get attention. His reference to self as a "wannabe Hitchens" is cause for him to offer Christopher a formal apology as he is no such thing. Again, bravos to Dave! No contest.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch: A target of Andrew's rant Boing, Boing says thanks.

Bonus: Certain to help further Andrew's case is this simple blog. The humanity.

Bonus 2: Susan Mernit Fads of the moment: Ten things we can learn from Facebook.

"8. Passive versus active still matters--but you can drive behavior. Remember those rules about people who watched TV rather than posted in online forums? It's still that case that most people are reluctant to write, slow to put themselves out there, and cautious about privacy and sharing. BUT--smart networks like FB model behavior and get that lagging 80% to do more that they ever did before, raising the bar on all network/community activity." Wonderful Susan, kudos! Thanks to Dave for the tip.

Congrats & cheers: Dave Edwards
, GM of WUWM, Milwaukee named chair of the Radio Research Consortium. Laurel Touby sells Mediabistro.com for $23 mil. Peter Moore leaving Microsoft, named new EA Sports prexy. Seth Goldstein and David Henderson launch SocialMedia.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

"Get over the idea that only children should spend their time in study. Be a student so long as you will have something to learn, and this will mean all your life." Henry L. Doherty

"People count up the faults of those who keep them waiting." French proverb

"Take the course opposite to custom and you will almost always do well." Jean-Jacques Rousscau

Little Steven
speaks up writing his Garage Rock column in the July 21st issue of Billboard.

"The record industry, the publishers and our government should be doing everything possible to help radio, old and new, and start treating it like the national treasure it is instead of trying to kill the golden goose that's carried everyone for 60 years."

Bravos Little Steven! Thanks to Dan Kelley for the inside tip.

Today's image: Tree framed in Tree by Daniel James. Very cool. Thanks for sharing.

Priceless: Clay Shirky "They didn't care that they'd seen it work in practice because they already knew it couldn't work in theory."

The obvious remains the most difficult to see: Arthur Greenwald gets right to the point writing in TVNewsDay (Forget Cool: Make Broadcasting Red Hot free reg)...

The way for broadcasting to recapture market share from cable and satellite is not by promoting the facts that it is free and a better HD medium, but by developing compelling local programming." Amen. Local, local, local! No matter your 2008 LO budget, increase it.

Congrats & cheers: Kevin Matthews guest hosting late mornings today and tomorrow on Kipper McGee's WLS. Middleton, Wisconsin named #1 on Money's annual Best Places to Live list. We love Middleton, home to our retail store since 2004. Google, Dave Girouard and his Enterprise team on launching Custom Search Business Edition. Colleen Brown and the Fisher Communications gang on their acquisition of Pegasus News (Kudos to Mike Orren and crew for leading the hyper-local charge). Smart, very smart.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

Photo: Guitar Town by Thomas Hawk. Fine shot. Thank you!

"I don't read music. I don't write it. So I wander around on the guitar until something starts to present itself." James Taylor

"The guitar is a small orchestra. It is polyphonic. Every string is a different color, a different voice." Andre Segovia

"Constantly review developments to make sure that the actual benefits are what they were suppose to be. Avoid Newton's Law." William Swanson

Swanson's Unwritten Rules of Management:
unwritten rule number seven...

"Follow-through is just as important as good decision-making in the first place. When deciding on a course of action, set measurable objectives that can be monitored over time to make sure the decision is yielding the intended benefits. By "Avoid Newton's Law," I mean that "for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction." Assume that your decision may have second- and third-order effects. Monitor the progress of the actions you set in motion to make sure these effects are not counter-productive, and if they are, that they are addressed early.

At Raytheon, our program managers use various process disciplines that enable them to evaluate how well the program is proceeding and whether mid-course corrections are needed.

When used properly, these disciplines are a powerful management tool to keep programs on course. However, it is essential that the manager use the disciplines to gain insight into his or her program and its progress, and not simply as a way to 'check the box.'"

Excellent counsel from William Swanson. One of the subjects touched on in my brief talk at French Lick this past week (Broadcast Management Futures Summit) was the critical importance of measurement. My suggestion is you need to employ a daily dashboard as an approach to keeping current on what is happening and what is not happening in your enterprise. Daily. Weekly or monthly is simply not current enough, you need fresh data points, feedback loops need to be tight enough, close enough to be actionable.

Housekeeping: Added the blog of Tom Asacker to the Other Voices column at left. Impressed with Tom (first meeting him earlier this week) and find his writing interesting. You may find his blog here. Added current reading to my reading list which always seems to lag, all apologies. Click book titles for links to Amazon info. David Weinberger - Everything Is Micellaneous. Howard Moskowitz and Alex Gofman - Selling Blue Elephants. William Ury - The Power of a Positive No. Finally, one of my summer fiction reads Granta - Granta 97: Best of Young American Novelists.

The $225,000 parking space: Only in the city; Vivian S. Toy has the story via NYT here.

Save Net Radio: My friend Kurt Hanson continues with those out front and leading the charge to encourage congressional action that keeps internet radio alive. The latest news here. This is one of the most important issues of 2007. Please click on the Save Net Radio banner, at left, and contact your members. Let them know you want and need congress to take action to protect the rich and growing diversity of voices.

Doc on the social nets: "For all their goodness, these 'networks' are silly. They are also as temporary and annoying in their competitive isolation as Compuserve, Prodigy and AOL were, back in the day (or the decade). Those things were Net-unfriendly long before their surviving members became Net-native." Bravo Doc, well said! Read Doc's post here.

The shopping cart: Working on building an online store for the retail shop. Your suggestions on shopping carts, hosting, software (browser based and packaged goods) and any/all other e-commerce solution issues welcomed and appreciated. Please use the contact me utility in the left column. Many thanks.

Bonus: Jack Pendarvis

Bonus 2: Postel's Law. Thanks to Dave Winer.

Bonus 3: Meet Me at the Fountain. A mad cool indie music news site. Thanks to Bruce Ravid for the tip.

Friday, July 13, 2007

"Every valuable creative idea (concepts and perceptions, not artistic expression) must always be logical in hindsight. If it was not, we would never recognize the value of that idea. It could only seem a 'crazy idea'. We might catch up with it in twenty years time - or never, for it might truly be a crazy idea." Edward de Bono

"Life does not stand still. Where there is no progress there is disintegration. Today a thousand doors of enterprise are open to you, inviting you to useful work. To live at this time is an inestimable privilege, and a sacred obligation devolves upon you to make right use of your opportunities. Today is the day in which to attempt and achieve something worth while." Grenville Kleiser

"Men and women love inertia. And to my way of thinking, inertia is the silent killer of most businesses and, in some cases, entire industries as well. Inertia in business, both up and down the chain of decision making, is no different than inertia in other aspects of one's life; it has to do with protecting one's identity, immediate self interest and inter-personal relationships." Tom Asacker

The efficacy of out-thinking the competition to win is rarely, if ever, considered. First, thinking is hard work. As George Bernard Shaw famously said "Few people think more than two or three times a year. I have made an international reputation for myself by thinking once or twice a week." It is tempting to substitute analysis for thinking and it is wrong. Edward de Bono writes...

"We have always depended on analysis not only to solve problems but also for our source of new ideas. Most people in education, science, business and economics still believe that the analysis of data will give us all the new ideas that we need. Unfortunately, this is not so. The mind can see only what it is prepared to see. That is why after a breakthrough in science we look back and find that all the needed evidence was available a long time before but could be seen only through the old idea (Kuhn's paradigm shift). There is a desperate need for the sort of 'idea work' or conceptual effort that Einstein provided in his field and Keynes in his. We know this is important, but we are content to let it happen by chance or genius because our traditions of thinking hold that analysis is enough...The brain has to use existing patterns and catchments. When we believe that we are analysing (sic) data we are really only trying out our stock of existing ideas to see which one might fit. It is true that if our stock of possible ideas is rich then our analysis will be adequate. But the analysis of data will not by itself produce new ideas." (I Am Right, You Are Wrong)

Tom Asacker is correct when he says inertia is a silent killer. My suggestion is inertia and analysis are a very dangerous combination. They lead us to see reality not as it is but as it was or as we wish it to be. Again Edward de Bono...

"Perhaps the greatest dangers are those of arrogance, complacency and the ability to defend that arrogance and complacency. An acknowledgement (sic) of inadequacy is a prelude to change. A defence (sic) of arrogance is a denial of any need to change...The arrogance of logic means that if we have a logically impeccable argument then we must be right" (ibidem)

Congrats & cheers: Michael Walsh new Interep prexy and COO.

Buzz: Facebook to Mr Softy for $6 billion? John Battelle's take on why Mark and his team (after passing on Yahoo's $1 billion) ain't sellers, here. The Scobleizer pov here w/comments. Kudos to John and Robert.

Report card - video: Nielsen-Netratings June, uvs. YouTube 51 mil, Google Video 18 mil, AOL 16 mil, Yahoo 15 mil.

First day at school - CBS-FM: My friend Rick Sklar said it best about new stations "Listen in four weeks." While it is unfair to judge any format initiative on the first day there are almost as many opinions on the CBS-FM debut as there are about which is the best slice in the city, which is the true or best Original Ray's or whether one really need go to Brooklyn for the finest burned meat. Allan Sniffen has devoted a board to the flip here. The Sean Ross First Listen is now on offer here. Dan Kelley gives his pov including some tunes he would have included out on the first day here. The Daily News writer David Hinckley on the change and the first day.

Failing to take Sklar's wise counsel we punched up the stream and played it in the office all afternoon and into the evening. The tech errors were to be expected but early on someone put audition audio of the phone bus on the stream and we were able to listen to callers being coached on their shout outs. The duration of this error was such that one wonders if no one was monitoring the stream or those that were thought someone else was already on it. The stream returned with Jack. A cache clear and relaunching the player brought back the main channel stream.

Between phone calls and meetings I was able to get a good sense of the first hours and they were not bad. The production, advertised as some of "the best work from across the company" was disappointingly average. It was good to hear Ziggie back doing the vo. The drops with city celebs including Senator Clinton are a good idea and deserve better staging (there's a solid branding element in there). The music log was not as strong as it needed to be on the first day. My thought being the station should have played more to the core and featured the best testing tunes not now being heard on other stations. Era, tempo and construction (sound) balance needed work, the log could have been cooked much better. The station's music was different but not different enough as played. The talent sounded up and good. The web page and player were, again, ok. Top of the page banner art icons need work. Aretha and Bruce - ok. Doobies - maybe. Rick James - no. Paul and John without Ringo and George?. Missed opportunity. Kudos for having something up and bonus points for putting up the videos, a nice touch. Not playing Hit the road Jack? A significant missed opportunity, shame. Playing Jack for a chump in his last hours - "who is Bob Shannon?" - priceless.

Overall, I give the first day an A for concept and a C+ for execution. It is certain to get better each day. Congrats and cheers to all involved. I'll wait four weeks before listening again.

Bonus: A collection of quotations on creativity, lateral thinking and problem solving here.

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Photo: day dream by rabbilydia. Very cool image. Thanks!

"The successful producer of an article sells it for more than it cost him to make, and that's his profit. But the customer buys it only because it is worth more to him than he pays for it, and that's his profit. No one can long make a profit producing anything unless the customer makes a profit using it." Samuel B. Pettengill

"Great opportunities come to all, but many do not know they have met them. The only preparation to take advantage of them is single fidelity to watch what each day brings." Albert Dunning

"The life each of us lives is the life within the limits of our own thinking. To have life more abundant, we must think in the limitless terms of abundance." Thomas Dreier

Inertia: Tom Asacker makes a cogent argument reduced to one word. During our discussion at the airport the other evening Tom offered this insight - the solutions to the biggest challenges facing broadcasters are being suppressed by the considerable powers of inertia. Bravo Tom! He's right on the mark. It's the conventional wisdom, the accepted best practice, the things we do because we have always done them, these represent too many of our self-imposed limitations. The press of daily affairs too often pushes us into performance by rote. The danger is to continue doing something long after its best used by date. To perpetuate habit for no good reason. We must dare to question this industry genetic blindness. Game-changing innovation requires that we achieve what amounts to an escape velocity, that certain sustained burst of well focused new activity needed to break free of bad habit and begin to set good, effective habit. If you have not spent some time on Tom's blog you should. Check out his writing: a clear eye. Highly recommended.

Congrats & cheers
: Gwen Piening, Linda Compton, Christine Merritt, Dennis Lyle, Gary White and colleagues on their achievements in bringing to life the Midstates Broadcast Management Futures Summit. Dan Mason and his WCBS-FM team, Jennifer Donohue, Brian Thomas, and staff on doing the right thing and in the process making history. Welcome back! Check out the special launch day audio and listen live here

The obvious:
Tomorrow is Friday the 13th

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

"The past is a bucket of ashes, so live not in your yesterdays, nor just for tomorrow, but in the here and now. Keep moving and forget the post-mortems. And remember, no one can get the jump on the future." Carl Sandburg

"The survival of the fittest is the ageless law of nature, but the fittest are rarely the strong. The fittest are those endowed with the qualifications for adaptation, the ability to accept the inevitable and conform to the unavoidable, to harmonize with existing or changing conditions." Dave E. Smalley

"Basic research is what I am doing when I don't know what I am doing." Wernher von Braun

Ground stop (GS), a part of life on the road. Two big ones this week. Missed one by hours, the other got me. O'Hare got hit with some summer rain Monday and Tuesday. The Monday event included hail. My flight was gone hours before. When the Tuesday rains rolled in I was on the ground in Louisville heading home. Once ground crews could not do their jobs in Chicago, O'Hare originated a GS. As a practical matter our flight from Louisville and others into O'Hare were "grounded." We waited for our "release" (i.e., "ok, release them, let em take off"). Them are the rules.

My advice is always bring a good book (or three) in the carry-on. My thanks to the United team in Louisville and at O'Hare for keeping us dialed-in. When I finally got to O'Hare, running from Term 1 to Term 2, my flight to Madison was "closed" meaning the last flight to Madtown had been missed. So much for my three hour layover pad. Experience has taught me, last flights out are, more often than not, a bad wager. Again, Mr. Murphy showed up to remind me - the last flight out odds are not so good, especially during the summer storm season. The temptation to keep the next morning auto-re-book and spend the night with friends in Chicago was strong but quashed by the press of affairs - that pesky day job again. Exhibit A - writing this post in the dead of night back home in Wisconsin.

The very cool thing about unexpected layovers is...the unexpected. Turns out Tom Asacker was in the room during my brief talk and he too was grounded, or somehow otherwise delayed, in Louisville. Kind enough to introduce himself, we had a fun chat. Thanks Tom! (p.s. sorry I missed your keynote - pesky day job, again).

Congrats & cheers: The first Broadcast Management Futures Summit was a fine first! French Lick is a very different venue. More in the coming daylight, including propers.

Thank you very much: Lindsay Wood Davis for his leadership of our session. The legendary Marv Dyson for his kindness in inviting me to join him and his family at one of the head tables for lunch - always a privilege Marv, always.

Hundreds of emails behind. Please standby. More later today.

Monday, July 09, 2007

"On the whole, it is patience which makes the final difference between those who succeed or fail in all things. All the greatest people have it in an infinite degree, and among the less, the patient weak ones always conquer the impatient strong." John Ruskin

"Conflict is the gadfly of thought. It stirs us to observation and memory. It instigates to invention. It shocks us out of sheeplike passivity, and sets us at noting and contriving." John Dewey

"A great idea is usually original to more than one discoverer. Great ideas come when the world needs them. They surround the world's ignorance and press for admission." Austin Phelps

Back on the road again. Chicago, Louisville, French Lick. Back to the blog Wednesday, sooner if I get a break in my schedule.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

"Better shun the bait than struggle in the snare." John Dryden

"I've noticed two things about men who get big salaries. They are almost invariably men who, in conversation or in conference, are adaptable. They quickly get the other fellow's view. They are more eager to do this than to express their own ideas. Also, they state their own point of view convincingly." John Hallock

"The only people who achieve much are those who want knowledge so badly that they seek it while the conditions are still unfavorable. Favorable conditions never come." Clive S. Lewis

Ran out of week, fast. A whole bunch of things going on and, of course, all at the same time. My thanks to those involved for inviting me to give a talk earlier this week. Asked to "update" A Great General Manager, we produced a very cool, fresh session with playbook and headed it "A Great General Manager: Agenda 2010." Much fun. It rocked. Thank you!

Excited about next week's talk at the Broadcast Management Futures Summit in French Lick. Moderating the HD Radio session and participating in the Lindsay Wood Davis Best Practices event.

Leadership in the creative organization continues to be a very interesting subject. The one factor offering the best return is strong leadership. In my experience either you benefit from having it or you fail to realize potential when not having it.

Claude Hall in the hospital: Mr Vox Jox is at Desert Springs Hospital Medical Center in Las Vegas. George Wilson reports via RDN publisher Larry Shannon that Claude is doing well. Reach out to Claude at 702-733-8800, room 322.

Congrats & cheers: Les Brown, host, and John Hannah, MC, on their Friday salute to programming ace Elroy Smith. Elroy on his fifteen years of making a positive difference in Chicago and in the industry. Radio One on the smart move of engaging Elroy as their Philly OM.

July 7, 1972: Somewhere, today, Dick Bozzi is laughing - in the least - smiling.

Priceless: "Art is a choreography of attention" From the Edward de Bono writing I Am Right, You Are Wrong.

Perhaps the timing is perfect to suggest a "Leadership: Media" gathering. Using the unconference model, lots of interaction from the day of announcement thru the event. Different, really, really different than anything now, or before, on offer. 2008? Just a thought.

Friday, July 06, 2007

"Hollywood is no place for a professional comedian; the amateur competition is too great." Fred Allen

"They are spoiling the oldest art in the world - the art of pantomime. They are ruining the great beauty of silence." Sir Charles Chaplin (on the invention of talking pictures)

"Making films means, first of all, to tell a story...What is drama, after all, but life with the dull bits cut out?" Sir Alfred Hitchcock

The Big Kahuna is now in rehearsal. Everything is on for the 07/07/07 launch. Check it out here.

Bonus: Delamination Now!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Photo: Ron Fell. Beautiful. Thank you!

"Life is the art of drawing sufficient conclusions from insufficient premises." Samuel Butler

"He who is silent is forgotten; he who abstains is taken at his word; he who does not advance falls back; he who stops is overwhelmed, distanced, crushed; he who ceases to grow greater becomes smaller; he who leaves off, gives up; the stationary condition is the beginning of the end." Henri F. Amiel

"No facts however indubitably detected, no effort of reason however magnificently maintained, can prove that Bach's music is beautiful." Edith Hamilton

Thank you:
Folks that keep track of these things tell me that our little company has received some kind of recognition for our international work. Again, thank you very much. LATER: It appears that several of our clients have been honored. They have been more than generous in extending praise to our firm in their acceptance of those honors. Any announcement of our involvement, as always, will be theirs to make, however, in advance I thank them for their kindness. It is an honor to serve.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007


Rhythm & Booms


Ting-Li Lin

A local grad student.

Check out his Studio

and his Blog

Fine shot. Thank you!

Happy 4th of July

My thanks to
Pieter Ardinois for checking in from Belgium and for the shout out. Cheers!

"Good taste is the modesty of the mind; that is why it cannot be either imitated or acquired." Emile de Girardin

"Charm is a way of getting the answer yes without having asked any clear question." Albert Camus

"The man who is prepared has his battle half fought." Miguel de Cervantes

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Photo: flatwater by Bucky4 Very cool. Thank you!

"Don't part with your illusions. When they are gone you may still exist, but you have ceased to live." Mark Twain

"Know the true value of time; snatch, seize, and enjoy every moment of it. No idleness, no laziness or procrastination." Lord Chesterfield

"The universe is full of magical things, patiently waiting for our wits to grow sharper." Eden Philpotts

Brier Dudley
writes Ten thoughts about the iPhone. Thanks to Dave Winer for the tip. Speaking of Dave, he is totally spot-on about his "feelings" with regard to his iPhone...

You don't want to give it to someone, you want to just hold it. I know it sounds silly and dorky, geez it's just a phone, after all, but it's not. It's a totem. A symbol. A charm. A fortune cookie. It's personal. It's mine."

Purchase behaviors are driven not by logic, not by reason but by emotion, by feelings. Dave's suggestion captures the reality of the matter in two words..."It's personal." It's always personal. Reality is perception, the perceptions deeply related to personal experience. Bravo Dave! (As a rabid BMW owner I can relate to, appreciate and respect what Dave says about the ultimate driving machine)

Free Online Dating

Cable Q2 Averages (news/talk): O'Reilly continues #1 in HH (1,734,000), P2+ (2,211,000) and 25-54 (442,000). The other 25-54 nightside leaders...

2. Greta 381,000
3. H&C 371,000
4. Shep 298,000
5. King 284,000
6. Brit 257,000
7. Anderson 253,000
8. Dobbs 233,000
9. Olbermann 198,000
10. Grace 187,000

Others...Scarborough 158,000; Hardball 129,000; Glenn Beck 111,000; Deutsch 72,000; On the Money 44,000.

Overall, Cable prime Q2 leaders: 1) USA 2) TNT 3) TBS 4) Fox News 5) Lifetime 6) ESPN 7) Toon 8) Discovery 9) N@N 10) A&E

Breakfast shows: Fox & Friends 275,000; MSNBC 165,000; CNN 154,000; Squawk on the Street 9A 116,000; CNBC Morning Call 109,00

Misc notes: CNN's Democratic Primary Debate averaged 2.8 mil viewers, besting all other debates of this election cycle to date. Charles wins the 6:30 race in Q2 (total/25-54) 7,990,000/2,440,000; Brian 7,540,000/2,310,000; Katie 6,130,000/1,940,000.

Must fix TV: "
We're going to have to reinvent the broadcast television business. Advertisers aren't getting the value out of a 30-second spot that they used to, so we need to help them deliver impressions in a way that the audience won't ignore or skip." Marc Graboff, NBC TV. Read the entire Fortune interview by Barney Gimbel here. Good job Barney!

Bonus: NBC Universal CEO Jeff Zucker gives his view from the top, in two parts, FT.com video here.