Why do so many websites advertise Facebook for free? When you see a “Connect with us on Facebook” or “Like us on Facebook” widget, that is a free advertisement. Facebook does have competitors, and these websites are just helping Facebook dominate and a few people get rich — for free.
Facebook should be paying people to put these on their websites. Twitter, too.
Have you noticed that Google is getting harder to use, and is providing poor results? I seriously need something like the old Google for research — is there anything out there I can use?
Serious question, need to change I think.
I used to be a Silicon Valley entrepreneur.
Back in the day, you made a product, put it in a box, put the box through distribution, helped retailers sell it, got back a little money, paid your employees, and hoped there would be enough to make some more product, boxes, etc.
If you weren’t one of the BigCo’s the distributors would play games with your money. Eventually the games got so sophisticated, they had it worked out so you owed them more money than you made, so there was no way to get ahead. Unless you were one of the Big Ones. But even they hit the wall, and the software-in-a-box business went by the wayside.
A few people got rich from that. Yes, it was a bubble. What you got paid for was not your ability to make money. But, rather the ability of the VCs to sell Wall Street on whatever it is they sold them on back then. We were part of the whole system that eventually hit the wall with Credit Default Swaps and huge bailouts and unrepentant bankers. There was a trickle-down. The closer you were to someone who actually made something, the less you got paid. You read that right, the less you got paid. I’ll repeat it. If you made something you got paid less.
Yesterday I wrote that I was switching away from Chrome to Firefox because Chrime crashed so often, and there was a new version of Firefox out. Whoa – Firefox 8 was just awful! There was this noticeable lag time for everything, the interface is not convenient, and it just felt awkward. Especially when writing posts. Slow, catchy, sometimes it didn’t even sense that I was typing…
So back to Chrome, hoping it will stop crashing all the time.
I’ll try Safari soon, and report back.
After a very long run I have given up on Chrome and am switching back to Firefox. Chrome was crashing too often, becoming worse and worse. Let’s see how Firefox does, now that it is at version 8…
And have you noticed that google is getting harder and harder to use, and not giving good results anymore?????
What’s up with this company?
I’ve been meaning to write about how Google is getting worse and worse, and Atrios beat me to it: Eschaton: Oy
Have you noticed that it is getting harder and harder to get the info you want from Google?
As I wrote yesterday, I think the reason Netflix has lost 1 million customers is that most of their customers do not yet know that anything has changed.
In 1985 the Coca Cola company, sitting on the #1 brand in the world, with a spectacular product, loyal customers and spectacular sales, decided to scrap the product and come up with a new formula. They called it “New Coke.” It didn’t work out, and is remembered as one of the biggest business mistakes of all time.
In 2011, having dominated the competition, Blockbuster having gone through bankruptcy, spectacular market share growth, sales growth and stock somewhere around 300 decided that being an American company and all it was too obviously being good to its customers. Netflix announced a huge price increase, and then announced they are going to make it impossible for customers to continue to do business with them by splitting the company into two separate companies, with two separate websites.
I guess it’s possible that the Board and CEO could be replaced, and they go back to being the Netflix that was successful… but in the meantime there is Blockbuster, Amazon Prime (includes free 2-day shipping on all Amazon purchases), Hulu, Redbox, Comcast has XFinity, I don’t know what ATT does, etc.
I mean, can you imagine being at Redbox or Blockbuster, sitting around wondering what you’re going to do, and hearing these announcements? I mean, like winning the lottery?
Don’t leave a comment talking about how their business model required them to … anything. Any business model that involves screwing the customers, giving them less for more money, making it harder to get what you want… just don’t justify it. I don’t want to hear it. This is so stupid, it is the epitome of how MBAs destroyed Silicon Valley.
I don’t care WHY Netflix changed its business model, I just know that as a customer I don’t like it.
All over the web are stories about how the Netflix business model moves to the future, and their DVD business wasn’t growing fast enough, the content providers were asking for more, etc… I do not care. If businesses want to try to make me conform to their business model, good luck with that. I don’t care how brilliant or stupid their business model is, I care what they are doing for me, if they want my money. I think the reason Netflix has lost 1 million customers is that most of their customers do not yet know that anything has changed. The website looks the same, you get your DVD, you can stream videos. And you probably don’t look at your credit card statement.
But I hear they are going to change that soon. They are going to move the DVD service to another company, with a funny name, so you won’t be able to get your DVDs anymore, and it won’t tell you it is available as a stream, etc. THAT is when they will start to lose customers. Maybe all of them.
Netflix had a good thing going, was making money, moving along OK. So they just had to fuck with it. Great.
We liked the deal that Netflix offered. We got one DVD at a time through the mail, and watched some streaming movies and TV shows, especially British TV shows, because the Tivo made it easy. It was nice while it lasted.
Then they suddenly raised the price a whopping 60%, no notice, just “Ha, Got Ya!!!” And then, to top it off, they are going to SPLIT OFF the DVD from the streaming.
So, OK, I’ll be exploring the alternatives. I have Comcast, and they offer some stuff. Amazon has some stuff, Hulu has some stuff. Doesn’t Blockbuster do this now, too?
I guess Netflix is trying to be this generation’s “New Coke.” (Look it up.)
Anyway I’ll be looking and posting, and please leave alternatives in the comments.
Silicon Valley’s crown jewel, Palo Alto just got mowed down last evening by AT&T. To be specific AT&T effectively tied the hands of many of the City policymakers, and then plowed through the City Council and over 35 residents leaving their bodies scattered on the sidewalks in their wake. Using the big stick approach, they bullied and threatened action in the Federal court system if their addendum to their existing site permit was not approved; and the Council caved to the mighty sword sacrificing many of their downtown rental residents. Most troubling is that with these actions of passing this addendum for the mounting of two AT&T antennas on this residential building, this City Council may have set a precedent to severely limit tenants’ rights going forward in this particular city and longer term in the state. Commercial building owners may now have enlarged rights that grant them the ability to railroad their tenants with whatever side businesses they choose. If this decision by Palo Alto holds, California may be able to rewrite the Civil Codes that govern the rights granted to landlords by allowiing them to enter the premises far beyond the scope of maintenance and/or emergency. You see the only way to get to this balcony is by gaining access through the bedrooms of the residents.
Effectively this City Council has opened a hornet’s nest that may continue to sting them as this decision raises questions of social justice for over 40% of the City’s residents, of which over 70% are management or other professionals in the tech industry. We all know that we live in a society that is fraught with corporate collusion, fraud and bad behavior. Yet it is troubling to see this kind of reprehensible behavior in our own backyard without tacit consideration for the privacy, health and/or safety of the rental residents. Palo Alto is a city that is full of bright entrepreneurs willing to risk it all to create technologies that can change the world. Sadly, none of them signed up to give away their rights. Who would have thought that liberal Palo Alto, the place of big dreams, would sink to this level! Most importantly, what is to prevent other such activities that suggest some degree of collusion between the private and public sectors? Not much with this precedent setting action, huh? Will Palo Alto become a city that only protects their landed gentry? With this decision, they are certainly well on their way to solely protecting property owners over the serfs that rent.
Taking this further, can building owners throughout the City now run either brothels or daycare centers while residents are working during the day or evening? After all given this recently enacted City precedent – building owners now have the right to discount the objections of their tenants to cut whatever side deal that want. This means that building owners can engage in mixed use and side deals regardless of the vocal protests of their tenants. As outrageous as this may seem, this is the box that has been pried open with last evening’s decision and it may prove to a gift that keeps on giving. The young, the bright and the able may now choose to take their start-ups elsewhere and be treated far better in the short and longer term. Maybe there were bigger reasons that Facebook, the symbol of all that is good in Palo Alto, has chosen to jump ship and move to a neighboring city.
Note: This post will appear in other blogs.
I haven’t blogged about this in a dog’s age, but when I realized that Real DVD had lost in court to the movie industry, I had to post something.
. . . Sure enough, as anyone could have predicted, Judge Patel ruled against Real DVD and by extension, against fair use, freedom of information and ultimately against the interest of the very media companies she ruled in favor of. When 90% of U.S. consumers believe they should be able to make backup copies of the DVDs they purchase, its a futile battle to try to prevent them from doing so.
And just as with Napster, whose centralized servers potentially gave the music industry greater control of how music was distributed online, Judge Patel has ruled illegal a product made by a legitimate company that offers STRONGER copy protection than that used on DVDs.
I have beenwritingabout the MPAA vs RealDVD case.
MPAA vs RealDVD goes to court April 24. This is the movie industry trying to keep a program off the market because it lets you copy your own DVDs onto your own computer. It doesn’t let you distribute copies, just put them on your computer. The MPAA is suing under the terms of the DCMA copyright law –one of those laws that was lobbied (money changed hands) through Congress giving certain kinds of already-big corporations all kinds of rights that prevented new inventions and businesses from coming along and disrupting their sweet cash flows.
At ContentAgenda they’re writing about a panel put on by the Electronic Frontier Foundation,
“That happens a lot in Congress,” Barr added. “You have an industry, where they basically draft the statute–which is what happened with the DMCA–and then they start using it for all kinds of things that weren’t part of the original deal. And I wish sometimes that Congress wasn’t such a patsy for it.”
Meanwhile the MPAA weighs in about the poll the other day, which found that people actually want to be able to copy their DVDs onto their computers. First, “The studios’ claim: The poll was bought and paid for by download advocates, calling into question the survey’s findings.” Right. People don’t want to be able to copy their DVDs onto their computers. We’re dealing with responsive, innovative companies here. (Sort of like how at exactly 25 minutes and 32 seconds into a movie we get a car chase scene with the special effects raised to exactly 102 decibels, and then at 82 minutes and 48 seconds we get an emotional reconciliation between the 58-year-old male star and the 22-year-old former model playing the female love interest. Right.)
Said Angela Belden Martinez, MPAA’s vice president for corporate communications, “We didn’t need RealNetworks—who is in the fight of its life to defend its illegal RealDVD product in federal court—to sponsor a poll telling us that consumers of entertainment want to enjoy content when, where, and how they want it. The creators of film and television shows are energized by the opportunities that new technologies offer to consumers and have been tirelessly working in collaboration with innovators to deliver them. This includes the streaming of entire popular programs on successful sites like Hulu, one-click downloadable movies on iTunes, and capabilities that enable customers to keep a free and legal digital copy of their DVDs. We will work with anyone who can continue to help creators use new technologies that exceed consumer expectations and ensure a sustainable model that supports even greater creativity in the future.”
Now, there is your hint. They aren’t trying to stop RealDVD, they’re trying to extort license fees from the company in exchange for dropping this expensive lawsuit.