Six Links Worthy Of Your Attention #102

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Is there one link, story, picture or thought that you saw online this week that you think somebody you know must see?

My friends: Alistair Croll (BitCurrent, Year One Labs, GigaOM, Human 2.0, the author of Complete Web Monitoring and Managing Bandwidth: Deploying QOS in Enterprise Networks), Hugh McGuire (The Book Oven, LibriVox, iambik, PressBooks, Media Hacks) and I decided that every week or so the three of us are going to share one link for one another (for a total of six links) that each individual feels the other person "must see".

Check out these six links that we’re recommending to one another:

  • Day 319: Self-Help Advice From A 2 Year Old – Jason Good 365. "My daughter is getting to that age. She wants to play ‘sleeping,’ but won’t sleep. Crying babies make her sad, but she can’t explain why she cries. Apparently, this is what we have to look forward to. ‘Tired of looking at yourself in the mirror? So was I until I met my friend permanent marker. FACE TATTOOS ARE RAD.’ Jason Good‘s stuff (by way of my wife) is pretty funny; why do I get the feeling he’s being perfectly serious here?" (Alistair for Hugh).
  • Which cities shape our musical tastes? Atlanta, Montreal and … Oslo – The Washington Post. "Montreal music celeb photographer extraordinaire, Eva Blue, pointed me at this article, which discusses research based on data. The researchers tracked the spread of new groups to see where they started. Atlanta for hip hop, and of course, Montreal for Indy music. Even the math says Montreal is cool." (Alistair for Mitch).
  • The Unabomber’s Pen Pal – The Chronicle of Higher Education. "The Unabomber is known almost exclusively from that police sketch of a mustachioed guy in shades and a hoodie. A dangerous crackpot. Which of course he was – his mail bomb campaign injured 23 people and killed three. Behind Ted Kaczynski’s terrorism is a deeply-held – and carefully argued – belief that our modern technological society is sick. David Skrbina, a lecturer in philosophy at the University of Michigan, has been corresponding with Kaczynski for years, and has collated Kaczynski’s writings in a book, Technological Slavery." (Hugh for Alistair).
  • You Should Probably Send More Email Than You Do – Kalzumeus. "Maybe email isn’t so bad afterall." (Hugh for Mitch).
  • Piracy, Google and Facebook Crowdfunding: Ari Emanuel Lets Loose at D10 (Video) – All Things D. "I’ve had the pleasure of meeting and seeing Ari Emanuel (co-CEO of William Morris Endeavor) speak in person. He does not mince his words. He’s spent years representing some of Hollywood’s biggest talent and he, himself, has been immortalized by the show Entourage (the character Ari Gold is based on him). In this conversation from the recent D10 event, Emanuel presents his very pointed view of entertainment and commerce. Make sure to stick around for the Q&A portion if you want to see the Ari Gold character come to life." (Mitch for Alistair).
  • Six Tough Truths About Self-Publishing (That The Advocates Never Seem To Talk About) – Lit Reactor. "All authors are leaving major publishers because the big bucks are in self-publishing! Umm… not so fast. Editing, marketing, distributing, working on a great book cover… all of these things are not so easy. Book publishers still have power. Book authors just have more options. The thing is, just because you can write a great book, it doesn’t mean that you’re going to be great selling it. Are big publishers great at all of these things? No, not necessarily, but they have experience doing it. I liked this article. Not because I believed everything it said, but because it offers another perspective on the shifts in publishing. It turns out that the answer isn’t as black and white as you may think. In fact, there are fifty shades of grade (insert rim shot here)." (Mitch for Hugh).

Now it’s your turn: in the comment section below pick one thing that you saw this week that inspired you and share it.


  1. I have to respond to the article Six Truths About Self-Publishing because I think that one of his points completely misses the mark. The success of 50 Shades might be partly about luck, but that’s not the main lesson we can learn from the success of those books. Right now E.L. James has the top four positions on the New York Times list and she only has three books (each book and the trilogy hold a place). Luck is all we can learn from that? Really?
    It is easy to pass this off as ‘luck’ and laugh about poorly written books, but I think there are at least three business lessons that can be learned; some for publishing and some that are more general.
    The first is that if your product or service finds a niche – it can be successful irrespective of what might be perceived as flaws. E.L. James created a book with a good story and interesting characters. Isn’t that what fiction is about? The ‘poorly written’ flaw that is often tossed around might be true; but I have read plenty of mainstream successful fiction that is of worse quality. The fact that e-readers have made this niche easier to serve cannot be over-looked as well. There’s a new genre out there and E.L. James created it. I’ve heard it called “mommy porn’. If the Crossfire novels do as well as 50 Shades – we’ll see plenty of new authors pop up in this genre. Create a product/service that fills a need and you sell.
    The second lesson is that books are now like music – they spread via word of mouth. The first 50 Shades book was simply a pdf that spread from person to person; not unlike a musician’s work spreading via a YouTube video. We’ve come to accept this with the success of the Beibers of the world, but this is no different.
    The third lesson is that age-old business lesson for entrepreneurs – make your product/service fill a need for you. E.L. James wrote a book that she would have been interested in reading. There was nothing to compare it to. She didn’t write it to ‘sell’.
    I find it interesting that so many people are finding it necessary to simply dismiss the lessons from the success of 50 Shades instead of examining it. I could go on, but I will stop ranting.

  2. Mitch,
    Watching Ari’s interview. So true. In the Q&A you can totally see Ari Gold come out to life!
    Found this article and it’s really simple but true. It’s via –
    It’s on being in a moment, no matter what you’re doing. Made me pause.
    Thanks! Love your podcast. Listen to eat religiously.

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