Why You Need to Learn From the 17th Century

Socrates (or Sokrat in his starring movie role) challenged the conventional wisdom of his time with what we now call the Socratic method. But asking questions and engaging his audience to answer them ultimately got him killed. The leaders of Athens were angry because Socrates seemingly forced the questioned to follow through to a logical…

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Why VICE Succeeded and The Gothamist Failed

It seems the digital world has caught up with the sweatshops my late grandmother toiled in on New York’s Lower East Side in the early part of the last century. The only difference being that the consequences are more immediate… though just as harsh. This week, DNAinfo and Gothamist closed their doors after a vote…

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Does Amazon have the keys to your house?

Alexa, write my Ramble. Lol…didn’t even get an answer, just the ‘kerplunk’ sound. But Alexa did turn on my lights, give me news headlines, and is now playing my favorite background music for writing. Plus, we use the Echo Show in the kitchen to watch cooking videos and our 2-year-old granddaughter, Goldy, calls up her…

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Russian Ads and Soap: Lessons for Marketers

Every time I read yet another story about how the Russians managed to “throw” the U.S. Presidential Election with a $100,000 advertising budget on Facebook, I honestly burn with jealousy. In fact, I’d bet many marketers feel the same. I can only imagine the discussion in meetings, conference calls, and in confrontations at conferences: ‘Why…

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What Do Vice and Hugh Hefner Have in Common? More Than You Think.

One by one, they disappear. High-profile lives and their many followers… suddenly gone. It could be the pilot for the latest mystery-infused TV series (in the all-screen, any platform or distribution sense). Perhaps it’s the plot of a star-studded summer movie blockbuster, or even a bestselling novel. Any guesses? And no, for a change, the…

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iPhone at 10: A Decade of Dichotomy

Obnoxious, obsessive, offensive. Addictive and compulsive. My wife, Debbie, berating me for my smartphone behavior. And on the tenth anniversary of the iPhone, I know that I’m not alone…nor is she. But those comments are about my personal behavior and usage habits. Not about the iPhone. She, as an iPhone user, would tell you how…

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Do You Consume More Than You Create?

The attack was relentless. A terrorist outrage. Global. Seemingly without purpose other than to show crippling power. Most were victims of collateral damage, not purposeful hits. Frankly it was scary, humbling…at first…and then… Last week institutions around the globe were attacked by a deadly virus that insidiously wormed its way across the world, in mere…

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A TV Record, Social Frenzy, Live Events, and Engaged Millenials —Can Anyone Guess The Star?

It was viral…a leaning in and not back event…a socially involved and active happening, where people were interactively engaged and immersively involved. No doubt the DIGIBABBLISTS are pumping their fists at my use of so many clichés while others are rolling their eyes for the same reason. But it was a perfect storm, for me,…

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If Luther Had Twitter

There was a time when the word “viral” meant the plot of a new novel by Michael Crichton revolving around some weird, rapidly spreading disease that threatens the very existence of our world. Then the Internet arrived and “viral” took on a new connotation. No need to go into detail but we all remember the…

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Finger Pointing Won’t Stop Gun Pointing

A country’s leader is brutally stabbed to death in the most public of places…a theater…making the event immediately known and shared. Another country’s president is assassinated, also at a theater, as the murderer shouts, for all to hear, “Sic semper tyrannis!” (“Thus always to tyrants!”) And a vigilante kills a prisoner as television cameras broadcast…

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If You Think Algorithms Help Your Brand, Think Again!

In response to consumer pressure, some companies such as Kellogg’s, BMW, Warby Parker and Allstate have issued guidelines not to allow their digital advertising to appear on Breitbart News. The site, famous for its invective-filled headlines like “Birth Control Makes Women Unattractive and Crazy,”is the largest and therefore the symbolic epicenter of controversy over inflammatory…

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7 Predictions From a Cloudy Crystal Ball

2017 and my first big post. Number one, and most importantly, welcome to a new year and a fresh set of possibilities and opportunities that could help us change the world. Clearly, we have all followed the overwhelmingly expressed social media view that 2016 was a bust with fear expressed for what 2017 might bring….

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Sharing Candles, Sharing Lights

We overuse the word “share” and undermine its most powerful meaning. Sharing has always been about giving something up that belongs to you, taking a piece from your whole and distributing it to others. When we were young, being a good sharer meant letting the other kid play with your toys. As we got older…

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Whose Truth Is it on Google?

“Providing relevant answers has been the cornerstone of Google’s approach to search from the very beginning. It would undermine the people’s trust in our results and company if we were to change course.”- Google, in response to SEME research.  SEME, in this context, is for those who Googled and found links to Japanese culture: “The…

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The Power of Celebrity in Politics

How impactful do you think social media was during the recent US presidential campaign? I’m not referring to the tweets or posts of either candidate. I’m more interested in the celebrity endorsements, the influencer factor if you will. A quick search and count will tell you that Clinton out celeb’d Trump by an exponential factor….

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Elections Are Won by Votes, Not Likes and Shares

“Politics is just like show business.” – Ronald Reagan It’s hard to argue with that sentiment after the recent US election. However, my interest is more on the side of how the show-business effect impacted Millennial voter turnout than in the antics and theater of any particular candidate. To that end, it is important to note…

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Fake News: You Get What You Pay For

“A Lie Can Travel Halfway Around the World While the Truth Is Putting On Its Shoes.” -Mark Twain (no one knows for sure if he said it) Even if he didn’t say it (and if you know—one way or another—please tell), it is prescient in its meaning today. Fake news is all the rage these days,…

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