Category Archives: Culture

Facebook has started internal testing of its dating app

Let the poking begin.

Brownie Bytes has some questions

Is “OldBook” trying to become relevant with younger audiences again?

Or is it just going to get a bunch of creepy divorced people hooking up – or promoting divorce among sneaky spouses?

I thought Facebook was cracking down on fake accounts? Isn’t this going to just spawn a rash of new fake profiles?

…sometimes I crack myself up.

From The Verge

According to internal Facebook posts:

“This product is for US Facebook employees who have opted-in to dogfooding Facebook’s new dating product,” a screenshot reads, using slang for employees testing out their own software. “The purpose for this dogfooding is to test the end-to-end product experience for bugs and confusing UI. This is not meant for dating your coworkers.”

Facebook asked employees to use fake data for their dating profiles, and plans to delete all data before the public launch. “Dogfooding this product is completely voluntary and has no impact on your employment,” a screenshot reads, adding that the product is confidential. It also warns employees that its anti-harassment policies apply to the dating product.

Read More (The Verge)

https://www.theverge.com/2018/8/3/17649624/facebook-dating-app-internal-testing-profiles

Disney Imagineers and Theme Park Designers Are Leading Experience Marketing into a Whole New World of Brand Storytelling

By: Liz Alton [@Beinglizzie] Insights from Disney:

Emotions and Storytelling

Disney is one of the best storytelling engines in the world. Immersive storytelling elevated the brand beyond the basics of regional amusement parks and water slide attractions to become a global titan that’s captured imaginations from Orlando to China. The dream team that builds the attractions, the destinations, and every aspect behind the experiences are the Imagineers.

From immersive storytelling to bringing cutting-edge technologies to bear, the line between marketing and entertainment is thinner than ever before. Brands are creating apps, virtual reality experiences, pop-up branded events, and full-scale immersive tours to delight customers, tell their origin stories, show the manufacturing process, and help build deeper, emotion-based connections.

Read More (Skyword Content Standard)

My Take from Brownie Bytes

I was fortunate to know the executive VP of Imagineering at Walt Disney World in Orlando (his son was my best surfing and cycling buddy in high school / college). I got the inside scoop on how Disney produced their story-themed attractions.  Then my buddy and I were the first two “test particles” (that’s what the imagineers called us) at Typhoon Lagoon.  Yep, the first two surfers at the wave pool.

Prior to Typhoon Lagoon, in the mid-1970’s in college I worked for an engineering firm that tested a lake/beach/wave machine in a Disney World lake. It was a complete failure. The wave washed away the sandy beach every 2-3 waves and the water looked like the stirred up brown cypress oil muck that it was.  I got to ride 1 wave.  That’s right 1. It was a white-water-willy wave only the white water was the color of barely foamy puke.  Not a pleasant experience.  Not all Disney rides make it to the public.  In fact, most are running at 20% of their capacity for safety reasons.  Typhoon Lagoon can crank out a 9 foot wave.  But the public only sees 2-4 feet.

Years later I was fortunate to work for both IBM and Motorola.  I was the first multimedia producer at both companies so I got to work with Disney imagineers to build business and home of the future exhibits at EPCOT.  I learned how to develop stories with the integrated Disney spin.  A great experience.

 

Facebook, Twitter, Netflix Stock Down as Tech Woes Ding Markets

Technology stocks fell again on Monday and deepened their steep losses from the end of last week that saw shares of social media companies Facebook and Twitter plunge around 20% each in a single day. By Monday, even once-mighty Netflix seemed weak in the knees, with the streaming media darling down almost 6% in mid-day trading.

Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook), Reed Hastings (Netflix), Jack Dorsey (Twitter)

It’s a sharp turnaround for a group that had long been the stock market’s undisputed leader.

Tech stocks in the S&P 500 slumped 1.7 percent Monday for the sharpest loss among the 11 sectors that make up the index. It follows a rough week for the tech industry after earnings reports from Facebook and Twitter raised concerns about their growth and sent their shares plummeting.

Twitter dropped 5.8 percent Monday to $32.16, following its 20.5 percent plunge on Friday. Facebook was down 4.5 percent Monday to around $167 after shares fell 19% last Thursday for a stunning $119 billion drop in market value that was the biggest one-day loss in Wall Street history.

Netflix was down 5.7% Monday to $335.25 per share — some 20% below a recent high of $419 a share on July 9.

See More (CBS News)

My Take from Brownie Bytes

Social media and movie companies (Netflix, Amazon) are alienating at least half of their customer base with their business practices and politics. No business can afford to antagonize half of the market and expect to grow.

Amazon is more diversified so they aren’t feeling the hit as much, yet….  But when more customers discover and understand the counterfeit product problem Amazon has – yes, I’ve unfortunately and unknowingly purchased some (the reviews aren’t always the truth) – then Amazon stock has a chance to wilt too….

 

VIDEO: Active-Shooter Police-Paramedic Training in Palm Beach School

See my latest weekly news broadcast that leads off with active-shooter police and paramedic training in the Palm Beach Public School.  Officers are trained to go in alone and take out the threat and not wait for backup that’s on the way. Yes, the officers did catch some rounds from the bad guys. Would you have the guts to go?

Civic Association News – R. Michael Brown, Writer | Producer [3:56]

This Week in Palm Beach | 7-27-2018 Edition from Palm Beach Civic Association on Vimeo.

Cord-Cutting Keeps Churning: U.S. Pay-TV Cancelers to Hit 33 Million in 2018 (Study)

From R. Michael Brown [@rmikebrown] — I’ve been a cord cutter since 2004. I found as a writer and video producer that the standard cable and satellite content was following a usual formula [like disparaging heterosexual men – network TV’s favorite punching bag] and more and more outrageous for no other reason other than a never-ending quest to get more eyeballs.

I didn’t want my kids watching any of it. Books and Internet content was more entertaining and informative, and I had more control over it, so I cut the cord.

Cord-Cutting Keeps Churning: U.S. Pay-TV Cancelers to Hit 33 Million in 2018 (Study)
By Todd Spangler [@xpangler] (Variety)

Have you recently pulled the plug on cable or satellite TV? You’re not alone: Millions of Americans have already scrapped traditional pay-TV service, and the exodus is expected to continue apace in 2018 — even faster than previously expected.

This year, the number of cord-cutters in the U.S. — consumers who have ever cancelled traditional pay-TV service and do not resubscribe — will climb 32.8%, to 33.0 million adults, according to new estimates from research firm eMarketer. That’s compared with a total of 24.9 million cord-cutters as of the end of 2017, which was up 43.6% year over year (and an upward revision from eMarketer’s previous 22 million estimate).

That said, even as the traditional pay-TV universe shrinks, the number of viewers accessing over-the-top, internet-delivered video services keeps growing. About 147.5 million people in the U.S. watch Netflix at least once per month, according to eMarketer’s July 2018 estimates. That’s followed by Amazon Prime Video (88.7 million), Hulu (55 million), HBO Now (17.1 million) and Dish’s Sling TV (6.8 million).

See More (Variety)

‘Waze of Parking’ App SpotAngels Raises $2.3 million

By; Kirsten Korosec [@kirstenkorosec]

SpotAngels, an app that uses crowdsourced data to help drivers find parking and avoid tickets, has raised $2.3 million from a group of investors that includes Google Maps co-founder Lars Rasmussen.

Luc Vincent, the former head of Google Street View and vice president of engineering at Lyft, as well as Y Combinator, Streamlined Ventures and Via ID also invested in the round.

The startup plans to use the funding to expand to other U.S. cities and improve its free mobile app, including a new “predicted availability” feature that it hopes to launch later this year. The new feature allows drivers to know what the odds are of finding a spot in any given area before heading there.

The existing app works like a network — the more users, the better the intel. Once a user installs the app, it can provide real-time data to the greater SpotAngels community. The app, which uses the car’s Bluetooth connection or phone motion sensors, knows when the user’s vehicle is parking or leaving a spot.

More (TechCrunch)

Go to SpotAngels

This is going to be really useful in the Town of Palm Beach.  The number 1 concern for residents in town is “Where can I park?”

 

 

John Galt

Galt is the hero and main character of Atlas Shrugged, because his principles drive the action and the conflict of the story. The book explores what occurs when
— Read on www.cliffsnotes.com/literature/a/atlas-shrugged/character-analysis/john-galt

Who is #JohnGalt?