Posted by Amanda Chapel
NEW YORK -- Major League Baseball, in its continuing effort to promote and expand the game in fun and exciting ways, today announced the launch of the Citizen Player Program. The most radical change in over 100 years, some experts are already predicting that this modification could totally revolutionize the game.
Modeled after the "citizen journalism" craze that's currently sweeping through the media business, the Citizen Player Program is actually the brainchild of the Tribune Company, the owners of the Chicago Tribune Newspapers and Chicago Cubs. The idea basically is that instead of having all the fuss of a minor league system and all the rigmarole of huge contracts and negotiations, players for a particular game would be selected based on the Google link popularity of their blogs.
Commissioner Allan (Bud) Selig said, "Major League Baseball has been looking at the best ways to prepare for the 21st century and fortify our relationship with our audience. If this is what they want, whatayagonnado?"
Chicago Cubs President John McDonough issued the following statement: "The Chicago Cubs are terribly saddened by this decision. I mean we're not really known for winning but you don't have to humiliate us. Why doesn't the Tribune just sell us and move on?"
The Cubs current manager Lou Piniella added, "Hey, I am getting paid either way. What the hell, it's not like we're going to do much worse."
The full details of the changes have not yet been disclosed; but according to an insider there will be minor rule changes and field alterations. First base will be moved to 10 feet from home plate. Player/bloggers will each get 30 strikes. If an opposing pitcher even looks at them funny and exhibits "troll" behavior, the player/blogger will get to take first base and the pitcher will be thrown out of the game. All other professional players will be fitted with special 20 lb. weights for their arms and legs.
The Cubs will play the first game under the new Citizen Player Program against the Pittsburg Pirates on May 8. The Cubs' preliminary roster includes: Robert Scoble, Steve Rubel, Shel Holtz, B.L. Ochman, Debbie Weil, Shel Israel, Brian Oberkirch and Brian Solis. They will variously rotate as pitchers, catchers and infielders. Minor leaguer Steven "Vapors" Streight has been unanimously selected as their way outfielder; and old timer Jeff Jarvis has been signed on as the new pitching coach. Of course, all this is subject to change at game time.
Posted by Amanda Chapel
The following is an open-letter to PR blogging consultant, B.L. Ochman. It also goes out to anyone else we may have similarly offended in the last year.
Now, to our boldly unapologetic fans, as you know, apologies are all the rage presently. We momentarily succumb; bear with us. Steve Rubel just demonstrated their effectiveness with the PC Magazine incident. For what it's worth, a simple gesture got him outta trouble, likely saved his job, and resulted in a whole lotta traffic to his website. We were subsequently inspired.
Anyway, with Rubel's selfless sincerity in mind, here goes:
Posted by Amanda Chapel
The Blogger Code of Conduct Revised
So what's the latest Web debacle? The story now is that the very guy who coined the phrase "Web 2.0," Tim O'Reilly, has gotten severely mugged while issuing a few guidelines for civility.
Well, WTF! The New York Times describes the blogosphere as a nasty, wild and wooly place filled with uncivilized hooligans and vitriolic bloggers. And what is our combined response? We prove them exactly right. Terrible, just terrible.
Fact is, O'Reilly was just proposing that it's time we clean up our act. Considering that it was only a proposal and a first draft at that, the negative backlash is downright reprehensible. What happened to the "conversation"? Hypocritical bastards the lot of 'em. Here uniquely, we try to take a rational approach and help Tim refine his 6-point charter.
First, let's put this all in context. Here's a little background as to why this is so important and urgent:
Well, for one, O'Reilly and Co. have a lot riding on this Web 2.0 thing. For some there's a lot on the line professionally and personally.
For a "professional" perspective, take Edelman's Me2Revolution (please). They've invested a lot and haven't seen much (if anything) in the way of return. Trust me, if there's money to be weaseled out of a hyped trend, Edelman is the firm to do it. Bottom line: all this trash talk is really bad for business. Ya just don't throw a tantrum during the sales pitch. Think about it.
Now, on the personal front, people like Parmet, Holtz, Himler, Basturea, et al., have all told their friends and families that this scheme was going to pay out big time. Fact is, as this thing goes south, most of these guys are so far out on a limb career-wise, their options are now pretty limited. I mean, what else can they do? And Himler's got three kids!
Then there's the rising tide of floaters found in the blogging meme pool: the Wikipedia attribution and credibility issues; Edelman Wal-Mart Flog Flap; the seemingly endless Chris Hansen MySpace pedophile parade; the trumpeting of Twitter's triviality; and of course, the Kathy Sierra MeanKids online rape and death threat drama. Yikes! Sure looks like the society of Social Media is now populated by 60 million masked predators looking to swindle you or "cum down your gob." Turns out Keen's Cult of the Amateur not only articulately describes how this mob is replacing the Institutions that house the Mona Lisa with abject mediocrity; it shows how we've raised badly done pornographic graffiti to cultural icon... all held sacrosanct in the name of empowered expression... all defended by Jarvis’ 6 million pitchfork and torch bearing mobsters. Sad and a bit scary actually.
Listen, unless we do something soon, the hope for Web 2.0 will disappear forever. Imagine Ruble part-timing at Sharper Image; Scoble taking your order at Outback Steakhouse; and Jarvis writing the TV complaint column for the weekly newsletter at your grandparents' retirement home. And that's not far fetched.
O'REILLY'S PROPOSAL REV. 2
Anyway, the following is O'Reilly's proposal refined and including an addendum:
What those that instantly poo-pooed O'Reilly first draft missed is that this is an opportunity. Like PRSA's Code of Ethics, it's not like it's actually going to be enforced or anything but it says that we adhere to its principles. This will go a long way in manipulating public perception.
Other than that, what can I tell ya? Robert if you're reading this, I'd like to start with an order of Bushman 'Shrooms. Then I'd like an Outback Burger with cheese, medium done. Do fries come with that?
Posted by Amanda Chapel
Definitively Documents Innovation and Social Value
As you are aware, the previous article here was a Q+A with author Andrew Keen on his soon to be released book "Cult of the Amateur." As the book is a detailed overview of how the Cluetrain Manifesto has been a total train wreck, predictably our interview was variously dismissed by the "true believers". Here, in the interest in fairness, we are running the opposing view on their behalf.
Prejudices aside, the debate comes down to the bottom line. With any invention, society weighs the positives against the negatives. Here specifically: What value are we getting from this social media experiment?
In a recent interview, Me2Revolution celeb Steve Rubel was asked, "If you were going to impart one bit of knowledge on the PR industry as a whole, what would it be?" Steve answered: "Never be afraid to dabble in new technology. It’s our future. Some 80% may not pan out but the 20 percent that does could pay off immensely."
All of Keen's researched and documented negatives aside, what exactly is this 20 percent that "could pay off immensely?"
Well, we sat down for a one-on-one interview with Kyle Machulis, developer at Second Life’s Linden Lab. Machulis nails the significance of the new social media platform of choice, Twitter, and how similar innovation is radically changing communications.
Without further ado...
Can it be any clearer why Rubel and his type are so enamored?EDITOR'S NOTE: Special thanks to Geek Entertainment TV.
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