Google is about to release, in test, its newest version of a communication tool wrapping e-mail, chat, blogs,wiki documents and photo sharing into one very neat and confusing package.

Creators of the application (they also developed Google Maps) believe "e-mail is a computer version of snail mail. Wave will be something new, a real-time communication system designed specifically for today's faster-paced, multitasking Internet, he said."

100,000 testers will, over time, address bugs in the platform before general release to the public.

Are we moving too quickly? Do we really need to weave these communication platforms together? It's a neat little trick if Google can pull it off, but I believe only die hard techies will appreciate its development.

It took the developers almost two hours to explain the platform in a video. TWO HOURS.

And it's really only an elaborate form of e-mail with all the bells and whistles attached.

The general user rarely scratches the surface of the power and depth of even our most common programs...Excel and Word. TWO HOURS!?

I have no doubt that the crashing WAVE will reach a level of success For now, keep those emails coming.


The latest influx of funds for Twitter has now vaulted the value of the company by Wall Street analysts to $1 Billion.
One hundred million in new funds flowed into the company from investor groups including T. Rowe Price and Insight Venture Partners, buying the company "more time to figure out its business model". Ha! Will Wall Street ever learn?

Insanity driven by greed.

And we are now beginning to realize how quickly this platform is losing its luster.

This from a celebrity supermodel who twittered her fan base several times an hour...."sorry twitter but this is my very last tweet ... we had some good times and bad but now our relationship is over ... " Sessilee Lopez.

Tweet that!


Once again, Google's Mail service has experienced an outage. A "limited number" of users cannot access their e-Mail accounts while other have no access to their contacts.

It's time to

We are fortunate enough to be living during a period of exponential technological growth .... often outstripping our ability as humans to cope with disruptive episodes. And while these tears in the fabric of our technology are quickly repaired, we often find ourselves frantic over the disconnect.

Our new methods of communication, while they appear in a heavenly cloud form, are nonetheless driven by machines vulnerable to a host of negative forces. Nature, the force of cyber
attacks, sun spots and the chaos that they can precipitate will never go away.

When, not if, the plug is pulled, take a few hours or even the day to recharge and slow down. Earlier this month, the social media guide website
Mashable suggested five things to do when Google goes down.

Here are five more ....

Find a library and reacquaint yourself with books .... NOT of the Kindle variety. Buy a newspaper, find a bench and read it.

Write something. Begin with a letter to a friend or a thank you note for a recent client exchange.

Take a survey and a break from your desk. Hit the streets, stop people at random and ask if they Twitter. You might be surprised at the results.

Go shopping for that cashmere sweater you spotted on sale.

Hit a coffee shop or a Starbucks and pick up the tab for the person in line behind you ... start a conversation.

Or...you can sit in front of your screen for the next few hours hitting the F5 key hoping for something to happen. Just remember, it's not
Google's fault that you don't have a back-up strategy in place.


As we come mid-way through Advertising Week in New York, two of the highest attended events vie for attention.
Both Mediapost's OMMA and IAB's MIXX venues are separated by just three city blocks and the focus of both are the future of our industry and the data that will drive us there.

If content is king then both events deserve to be crowned. Content at OMMA was both engaging and informative, with non-stop sessions around the clock.

Bant Breen (RIGHT & ON SCREEN),
President, Digital, Initiative Media

While the exhibit halls at both were a bit sparse, content and the quality of the attendees more than made up for the difference.

Brian Decker (LEFT), Managing
Director, Mindshare

There is, however, room for improvement. These events need to collectively bring together younger members of our industry. Planners were few and far between, likely strapped to their desks back at their offices while senior members of the team were networking.

One of the OMMA All-Stars, Colleen DeCourcey, Chief Digital Officer at TBWA challenged her audience to help bring and keep young people into the fold and to "stop doing old things in new places" ... Bravo Colleen.

Overall, an impressive display in a down and hurting economy.
With more events over the next few days, Times Square will be buzzing with media stars of all varieties.


Since Sydney Poitier's starring role in Guess Who's Coming To Dinner, much of the guesswork in the targeting of media on the web has been reduced to a closer approximation of "look-alike demographic clusters"....otherwise known as Behavioral Targeting or BT.

But BT is,for the most part, anything but precise. BT suggests surfing performed on the web appended with purchase behavior will, when driven by an algorithm, effectively place the PC (not person) it tracks in a demographic bucket.

Unfortunately, many non look-alikes will also be placed in that demographic bucket by proxy. WHY? Because BT is based on assumptions.

BT marketing efforts are often focused on retargeting .... reaching those consumers that visited a site, then abandoned the site. Up until now, all retargeting efforts focused on banner ads reaching those anonymous visitors. Very often, that strategy reaches exisitng customers as well .... resulting in advertising waste....or worse, sending the wrong message.

Today, and far into the future the business will be about data. Data that performs more effectively than cookie based tracking. Data that will be collected and refined with the transparency that consumers demand and deserve. Data that will be more stable and reliable. Data that will move beyond the banner into hyper-targeted e-mail, postal mail and personalized TV spots which will, in turn, drive up ROI.

There are one or two organizations crafting models that will make today's BT performance seem like two tin cans and a string compared to the iPhone.

Interested in more details? Drop me a note for more input.

America's Got Susan Boyle

Remember the runner up in Britain's Got Talent, Susan Boyle? She is in LA pre-selling her first album and for an appearance on the finale of America's Got Talent.

Her debut album "I Dreamed A Dream" will have its worldwide release on November 23, 2009.

What follows below is a cut from the album .... a stunning rendition of "Wild Horses" by the Rolling Stones.

Enjoy the preview ....


God Bless Mildred Heath.

Mildred works at a newspaper that her family owned until June of this year. What is so remarkable about Mildred is that she has been working at the Beacon Observer in Overton, Nebraska for 86 years. She still puts in 30 hour weeks and turned 101 in January. Mildred is an active member of the community working with many town committees.

When asked about the future of newspapers, she believes small town papers will hang in there for a long time and that the dailies are having a struggle because "you can get the news every day on television".

And while the Internet may not yet (or ever) impact Mildred's daily life, it's safe to say that she's right. Local weeklies will survive.

Mildred is among the lucky ones. She wants to work. For the millions of Americans that have come of retirement age, many need to work and have little hope of enjoying their golden years.

Thank you Bernie Madoff and a battered economy.

Millions in their 70s, 80s and even 90s have changed the picture of retirement. Workers over 65 are increasing at a faster rate than any other age group.... waking up to a dream that has faded, bending to financial fear and replaced by the harsh reality of lost pensions, inadequate savings and escalating medical costs.

Health Care reform, a reset on the way we save, an overhaul of the Social Security System and a serious clamp down on bank loan and credit card practices require a massive shakeup.

For marketers willing to grasp and understand the impact of this seismic shift in demographic profiling, there are fortunes to be made while catering to the needs of a new league of American Gray workers.


Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream has temporarily changed the name of its Chubby Hubby flavor to Hubby Hubby for the month of September in recognition of Vermont's Gay Marriage law that goes into effect today.

Unilever, parent of the brand, is expected to weigh in on the marketing effort that, while restricted to the state of Vermont, is generating global awareness.

Packaging will not be redesigned and the product will not be sold in retail outlets. Ben & Jerry's Scoop Shops in Vermont (there are only six) will carry the flavor while a wedding-themed truck will give away samples during the day.

As newspapers across the country carried the news, thousands of reader comments have already been posted, equally divided between pro and con positions.

Read the Ben & Jerry's announcement here. Vote for or against the flavor below.