I want to stress this again: In many, many parts of the country right now, if you want to go to see a movie in the theater and see a current movie about a woman — any story about any woman that isn’t a documentary or a cartoon — you can’t. You cannot. There are not any. You cannot take yourself to one, take your friend to one, take your daughter to one.
There are not any.
By far your best shot, numbers-wise, at finding one that’s at least even-handedly featuring a man and a woman is Before Midnight (on 891 screens) so I hope you like it. Because it’s pretty much that or a solid, impenetrable wall of movies about dudes.
Dudes in capes, dudes in cars, dudes in space, dudes drinking, dudes smoking, dudes doing magic tricks, dudes being funny, dudes being dramatic, dudes flying through the air, dudes blowing up, dudes getting killed, dudes saving and kissing women and children, and dudes glowering at each other.
Somebody asked me this morning what “the women” are going to do about this. I don’t know. I honestly am at the point where I have no idea what to do about it. Stop going to the movies? Boycott everything?
They put up Bridesmaids, we went. They put up Pitch Perfect, we went. They put up The Devil Wears Prada, which was in two-thousand-meryl-streeping-oh-six, and we went (and by “we,” I do not just mean women; I mean we, the humans), and all of it has led right here, right to this place. Right to the land of zippedy-doo-dah. You can apparently make an endless collection of high-priced action flops and everybody says “win some, lose some” and nobody decides that They Are Poison, but it feels like every “surprise success” about women is an anomaly and every failure is an abject lesson about how we really ought to just leave it all to The Rock.
I agree with every word of this. It is an absolute wrong.
But i often wonder: why aren’t rich women doing something about this? When the liberals complained there weren’t enough activist liberal films, liberal billionaires such as Jeffry Skoll stepped up and started producing films. When the Christians thought there weren’t enough Christian films in hollywood, they stepped up and started producing them. The military did it. The communists did it. A woman is Disney’s largest shareholder. America has a large, robust independent film community and production capability. The market is most definitely there. There is money to be made.
“But one feature of the upcoming devices was revealed on a recent GMCR earnings call: a new DRM-style system that will prevent unauthorized third-party coffee capsules from working in the machines. A bit of actual high tech in what is really a rather low tech device, designed to further lock consumers into keeping the money flowing to GMCR.”—
Earlier today, Facebook announced its acquisition of WhatsApp for $16 billion. It’s a spectacular milestone for the company’s co-founders Jan Koum and Brian Acton, and their remarkable team.
From the moment they opened the doors of WhatsApp,…
Okay, the numbers are huge, so if you look at it per user compared to something like Instagram, it sorta makes sense, and theoretically, Facebook knows how to monetize users and sell ads, so more users = more revenue, etc.
But I don’t completely buy it. Instagram made sense - it was pretty clear how they were going to monetize, stream-based monetization was pretty understood both by advertisers and by users. It was inevitable. Brands loved the “cool” of instagram, users spent a ton of time there, and had a habit of welcoming content from people they knew personally.
And you can compare it to the Twitter market cap and their ad revs, but Twitter is PUBLIC, and it’s basically catnip to advertisers for it’s earned media amplification and easy metrics in a public sphere.
Whats app has none of these. It’s not clear how ads will fit in. It’s not clear brands are dying for more media space on the web. There’s no community, no habit of engagement with content creator strangers (okay, some), and no easy metric solution. No obvious potential for earned media amplification of your paid media.
And it’s GOTTA be ads - Facebook has been woeful in non-advertising revenue - gifts, etc.
That $1/yr per user will amount to some significant revenue, eventually, though I don’t know what their conversion rates will be and I don’t know how easy it’ll be for kids to circumvent that or move on to something else. But best case - everyone converts, they keep their user rate, no one cheats, everyone pays, infrastructure overhead is lean - it comes nowhere near justifying the valuation.
This can all be overcome, and utilitarian ties into Facebook that retain the users in the FB ecosystem will be obvious steps. But the rest? It will be hard, to say the least. A hard sell to advertisers, and hard to retain the users in an ecosystem of numerous low-friction-to-switch competitors.
I doubt many advertisers are sitting here going “OMG YES! NOW THEY WILL SELL ADS!” Like they were with Instagram.
“When we started the company we wanted to build something for the long term and sustainable,” he told interviewer David Rowan of Wired. “It’s not hard to sell a company, but if you look at [leading online] companies today like Facebook, Google, Yahoo and Twitter, they didn’t sell. They stuck around and built a great offering for users.” Koum acknowledged that these are all built on advertising, while WhatsApp is not, but the main idea remains: “For us it’s about [building] a company that is here to stay.”—
“I was having lunch with my friend Mike Brillstein [a.k.a. L.A. DJ Thee Mike B] on our way to play golf. This guy came in and started talking to Mike, asking him what he’s up to. He said, “Oh, I just did a remix for the new Afghan Whigs album my friend here made.” I turn around, and it’s Bob Odenkirk! I loved Mr. Show and Breaking Bad. Then he asked me, “So, a new Afghan Whigs record, huh? It’s been a long time!” Bob then took a picture of the two of us together — me looking like a deer in the headlights in my golf shirt, not my finest hour — and said, “I’m going to tweet this. People are going to freak out!” I started saying he shouldn’t, that the label wants to announce it first. But then he did it anyway, said, “Okay, Greg! Good luck!” — then split. It was hilarious — such a Saul Goodman moment!”—
“An incredible political and economic experiment is playing out within San Francisco and its metropolitan area. The tech boom and the hyper-gentrification associated with it are testing the resolve and character of the city in a way the city or any other major American city has never experienced…
We could end up witnessing a San Francisco that reflexively tightens up its tenant protections and votes overwhelmingly against condominium development projects… On the other end, the city could become a Manhattan-esque playground for the rich of haute cafes that serve $4 toast, a place where community development centers get evicted and replaced by fusion restaurants catering to the whims of the latest food trends.”—
I’m not advocating one solution or another, but NY’s building boom is probably THE ONE THING bloomberg allowed that made this stupidly expensive city affordable at all. Zillions of people are moving into SF. There aren’t that many places to move in to. What was going to happen other than send prices through the roof and make it unaffordable.
The same thing happened to Seattle. They build. Lots. And it stayed relatively affordable. And quite a nice place, to boot.
I know I don’t live there anymore, but i don’t think people are advocating tearing down the wonderful old painted ladies and whatnot. But as small as that city is, there are plenty of places to more apartments if they wanted to.
“What is ‘work’, anymore? In context of capitalism/communism (and the old industrial economy), ‘work’ had basically meant a ‘worker’ getting paid to do some tangible, quantifiable task. E.g. I pay you $5 to move those 100 widgets. Or, maybe you get a loaf of bread if you move those 100 widgets.
But, in terms of the modern, knowledge economy, work means something different. I don’t need someone to move widgets. What I need is more content, better design, more aesthetics, more culture, more entertainment, more research and development. None of these are quantifiable or fungible.”—
My Star Trek Economics piece blew up on Hacker News today. Some of the comments are wonderful. You could write a whole essay just on this comment about the migration of work from producing widgets to producing knowledge - something that most economic models just skip over.
“On Beacon, readers browse through different authors and their projects on the site, and if they find one that they like, they can buy a subscription. There are different subscription levels but the basic price is $5 per month. The subscription actually gives them access to the full array of Beacon content, but the specific project that they support will get the “vast majority” of their payment, Sanders said. Meanwhile, around 25 or 30 percent of the subscription revenue is put into a bonus pool, which is eventually paid out to the writers as well — not based on pageviews or social sharing, but on how many readers hit the “recommend” button after they finished an article, showing that they actually thought it was worth their time.”—
However, this is far from a done deal. It will come under heavy government scrutiny. This would create the biggest pay-TV business by a mile. There’s not exactly a ton of competition in the world of cable, but this would effectively make it non-existent.
Man. Was really hoping for a big, messy acquisition to come along. And even though we’ll be safely on the sidelines with my FiOS, I’m still mortally terrified of this one. This is going to be a glorious mess.
“The rate at which web users consume and discard new apps is accelerating. Proof of that is clear: Chatroulette was popular for around nine months before users lost interest in its often-lewd content. Turntable.fm, which exploded in the summer of 2011, peaked that fall before people tired of its novelty interface. It was popular for long enough to raise $7 million in venture funding before finally shutting down late last year. Draw Something, a game which took off in early 2012, climbed the App Store rankings for just six weeks before Zynga (ZNGA) acquired its parent company, OMGPop, for $200 million. Almost immediately after the deal, the app began losing users. Recent viral hits which the jury is still out on include Snapchat, Vine, and Frontback, a photo-sharing app which gained traction over the summer but has been quiet since. The moral is: The majority of viral apps and companies have ended up as losers.”—
I post this because it’s something I’ve noticed from another direction: discussions around popular apps losing younger users.
Younger users are quick to jump onboard with trending apps. But they are not the biggest online spenders—that’s baby boomers—and they are very likely to quickly discard an app once it’s perceived as less cool. (Just a guess here, but likely it gets ‘less cool’ when the older, financially solvent user segments come along.)
In short: apps are currently being evaluated and funded based on their popularity with a cash-poor, fickle user segment. VCs and financial analysts are not only aware of this, but have decided those are ideal metrics on which to base their investments.
Clearly it is to their advantage to invest in a briefly very popular app rather than an app with a smaller, more stable user base. Which begs the question: why even pretend most popular apps have a future?
(via timoni) Not much to add to this spot on analysis beyond: I’ve had similar thoughts. (via buzz)
It’s interesting. Part of me wants to say that these apps are starting to mirror the film world: groups of people get together, take investment, form a single-use LLC and create a thing that they release into the world. It works for a while, and it’s a big part of the cultural conversation and then everyone either moves on (most likely) or you end up creating a hyper valuable franchise, like Facebook or Lord of the Rings, where exponentially more value is created, and new lines of revenue are created through licensing (Lego toys, games, Marvel’s Agents of Shield) or new products (Vine, ChefVille, Facebook Poke).
The public markets have a love-affair with you (Lions Gate, Disney, Twitter, Facebook), so private equity (Summit Entertainment, Snapchat, The Weinstein Co.) or Acquisitions by larger players (Miramax, Tumblr, Instagram) are common.
There’s a basic mix of monetization through direct consumer sales (movie theaters, flappy bird), subscriptions (Netflix, Netflix), and advertising (Marvel’s agents of shield, TV spin-offs, Facebook, Twitter). Sometimes we have no idea how they’re ever gonna make money but we make them anyway just because they’re kind of awesome and need to exist (Snapchat, Snakes on a Plane, critically loved but unpopular tv shows like Arrested Development).
Funding is being disrupted with new players (Kickstarter + Spike Lee/Veronica Mars, AngelList).
The studio model exists well in hollywood (Disney et al) and after surviving some threats (Pulp Fiction, Robert Rodriguez, indie film) are stronger than ever. In tech? IAC and Zynga get no love. As Facebook transitions to a studio (Messenger, Paper, Instagram, Poke), perhaps this will change and tech, too, will survive the onslaught of the indie LLC.
It always freaks me out when Tumblr does one of those weird things where it shows you the same batch of 10 posts or so more than once in your dashboard. Like some weird glitch in the Matrix, and the whole world is being hacked.
Our product is ridiculously simple. We discover and track people from your network relevant to your priorities as a professional. On lists. Simple actionable lists. Lists of people relevant to your book launch, sales efforts, fundraising tons of other applications. We got curious as to just…
Been using Simplist for a few weeks now. It’s deceptively simple, but fills a need that has been a total pain in the ass for me before now. I am a big fan.
I think it’s worse for some books than others. One one extreme: technical manuals, business-books-of-the-month and genre novels. These are totally better on the kindle. You don’t need another Disneywar-esque book or Photoshop 5 guide on your bookshelf for life. On the other extreme: art books, design books, your favorite novels and awesome Star Trek diagram books. Those are much better in print.
Federated Media leaves at least two major legacies to be acknowledged: First, it pioneered the notion that not only would “brands become publishers,” but they would be positioned to compete directly with publishers. Federated wasn’t aiming to be a substitute for the custom publishing arms of trade publishers like Meredith and Rodale. Instead, it was actively trying to disrupt that model with a brand-new approach to outsourced, contributor-based content creation. At the time, everyone was looking for “the Huffington Post in-a-box,” and Federated came closest to realizing that vision for brands.
Secondly, Federated was the first to recognize that the followings of bloggers and new social networks like Twitter allowed content creators and influencers to become the channel. While FM had not entirely figured out the value equation (it probably overpaid a lot of their “influencers”), it was the first to actively enlist luminaries like Guy Kawasaki to move their own audiences to the Amex Open site, demonstrating the content creation potential of influencer marketing.
“But one thing is for sure. Foursquare is back on the map. As Facebook built its own location service and Google pushed into the same game, many questioned whether the New York startup would survive. But its Microsoft deal shows that reports of its death were greatly exaggerated. In fact, it’s at the heart of a movement posed to remake the net.”—
Hi! Maybe it's a silly question, but: (hypothetically) does Vulcan copper-based blood carry more/less/the same amount of oxygen as Human iron-based one?
There are animals here on earth that have copper-based blood (called hemocyanin), actually, all of which are either mollusks or arthropods. I actually did research on the exhaustion rates of crabs in college and we’d regularly draw “blood” from them.
I put blood in quotation marks because it’s not like our blood. We have tons of hemoglobin packed into specialized cells, while hemocyanin just hangs out in suspension in stuff that we call “hemolymph.”
Hemocyanin carries about a quarter of the oxygen of hemoglobin per unit of blood. However, it’s much better at binding with oxygen in low-temperature places with low oxygen content, which is why it’s great for crabs and lobsters and horseshoe crabs.
So, yeah, Spock would need a LOT of blood, or, conversely, a different copper-based oxygen bonding complex to function well without four times as much blood.