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Today is a one of my favorite holidays.  Not only because it celebrates the colonization of America, but because it gives us a great reason to pig out and be with our loved ones.  I’ll keep it short and sweet so you can get back to the meat: HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Til Next Time,

Michael

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Well, I’ve clearly been so busy blogging lately that I totally forgot to wish my site a happy birthday!  Just over one year ago, I set out on this crazy endeavor.  I thought I’d give a lot more time to it.  I didn’t think that I’d be switching jobs, juggling compliance concerns, and trying to figure out what it all means for my “personal” brand.  At some point soon, though, I am going to try to formalize my thoughts and refine my content strategy going forward.  Until then, cheers to you all who have been following me for over a year now!

Til Next Time,

Michael

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I was reading an article today on the Disney empire and was very interested to see the author’s opinions on the company (well, I suppose I should say “companies” really – since they act somewhat autonomously and disparately whether you’re talking about ESPN, TV, Movies, Mobile, Parks, or any of the others).  I am not nearly as surprised that the empire of companies are actually very diverse and unique, and that there is a seeming lack of homogeneity from one to the next.  The timing was really funny for me though as I have only recently started thinking about their empire again now that I have two nephews and a niece that are of the age where these forms of entertainment are enjoyable to them.

The one thing I do know?  The brand still has staying power.  I was trying to buy my girlfriend The Lion King for Christmas the other day.  Guess how much it was?  $40 box set.  $40!  Granted – it was two discs with numerous superlatives (BEST version ever, MASTERFULLY reproduced, PLATINUM edition, blah blah) but I challenge you to name one other mode of entertainment that has been so transcendent that, over 20 years after initial release – you can still charge so much.  I was expecting to be able to rent on iTunes/Amazon for $3, $4, or maybe $5 in the worst case.  Boy, was I wrong.

Are there any other empires that come close to rivaling Disney?  I’m really starting to think the answer is “No”…

Til Next Time,

Michael

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I’ve mentioned it before and I’ll mention it again – I really appreciate the recent migration of major companies towards giving users a seamless/preferred contact method to inquire about, make updates to, or generally assist with any existing orders (be it in a retail/sales environment, with your hotels/airlines, etc).  My latest success story is another with Delta’s twitter @deltaassist.

In a few short minutes (as you can tell from the graphic – actually 9 minutes from first contact to be exact, of which 90% of my time was spent elsewhere multitasking as I awaited their response) I was able to have them add a traveling companion’s itinerary to mine and have them placed in the seat next to me.  Traditionally, I would have either had to call in (and wait) or get to the airport early to check in (and wait).  This removed all of the waiting and allowed me to quickly and painlessly manage the situation.  I know this is a costly thing for these companies to build and manage, but the ultimate reward in customer experience/satisfaction is truly invaluable.

Cheers to you, Delta!

Til Next Time,

Michael

I try to keep most things on the blog (and in life) void of any gross political charge.  And, in reality, I think this post follows suit. My doubters, though, may disagree.

Either way – I felt compelled to weigh in on net neutrality since that is an issue that has been so hotly contested this week.  It is also a topic that plays a big role in my company’s history and future.  In short – I think the President and his administration are way off base with their opinions and recommendations as it relates to net neutrality.

Reasons:

  • Making the internet another “utility” is degrading and unfair to the people who worked so hard to make it what it is today
  • The internet is fundamentally not a basic human right, and trying to enact legislation to commoditize it and make it freely available to everyone under the guise of “advancement opportunity” is anti-capitalistic at its core
  • Companies who have paid to build out the internet backbone should have the right to control their infrastructure and capitalize on their investment
  • As it relates to the “tax credit” argument (cable companies built out infrastructure largely based on tax credits, etc), these organizations continue to pay back the credits with competitive programs that support those who otherwise may be unable to afford the luxury
  • Innovation and job-creation will ultimately be handicapped if the president tries to thwart enterprise and suppress the opportunity to operate in a free-trade manner by over-legislating how the internet and the players in that space work

Do I think that perhaps we could take some proactive measures to ensure that the internet is further built out and continues to serve its customers as effectively as possible?  Yes.  Do I believe the government is the right agency to help police this?  Absolutely not.

Til Next Time,

Michael

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