Archive for April, 2010

Is there anything that Super Shakira can’t do?

It seems that there is no stopping this grammy award singing artist, musician and composer.

This girl is bad ass, from starting her own foundation – Pies Descalzos – in her native land of Colombia to committing to use her lessons learned in order to build schools in Haiti after tragedy struck this poverty struken country.

Now she’s fighting a new battle that just started in the U.S. – immigration reform – as Arizona enacted a new immigration law.

As Shakira clearly points out under the current law if she was questioned about her status she could be arrested due to the fact that she doesn’t always carry identification on her.

We salute you Shakira, for taking a stand for your brand – this clearly let’s people all around the world know that you stand for fairness and justice. Congrats to you!

Are social media sites such as Facebook, MySpace and all the other various sites hurting America’s youth?

Over the past week we’ve seen an increase in coverage over cyberbullying; kids and mothers bullying each other and even some cases of children committing suicide all because young people take to social media sites to express their every negative opinion.

Well a New Jersey principal has had enough and now he’s calling all parents to take action. He’s belief is that junior high students and for that matter, many young people do not belong on social networking sites. He argues that they are not emotional ready to cope with the back lash.

But what about all the parents who aren’t willing to take action due to peer pressure…we know many parent’s nowadays let their children do or participate in many activities simply because they don’t want their children left out of the inner circle – you know, the ones who are cool because they do and know about everything.

So if parents are willing to step in, should the companies like Facebook set up barriers in order to prohibit young children from creating profiles?

Tell us what you think…

With so much cause-related marketing taking place nowadays we’re witnessing many companies and marketers raising awareness around social injustice and environmental issues.

Having said that we think it’s important to shed light on an important issue that is generating headlines and buzz in Arizona. It’s in regards to so called “immigration reform.” But what does this mean for a State that relies on immigrants to stimulate it’s economy?

Furthermore, should companies and or brands take a stand on such a hot topic?

Have you or your friends been to Levi.com lately?

If not, then maybe you should.

Levi’s just launched their new Social Shopping platform and it’s pretty awesome. When you enter the site you’ll hear some hipster music, and then you’re greeted with the option to link with FB via Facebook Connect. It all happens very seamlessly.

From there you can “Like” different items in the store just by clicking on the “FB Like” icon. In addition, you can see some of the most popular items in the store. If that’s not cool enough, you can see specifically what your friends “Like.”

Other features include forwarding items to friends or posting Levi’s merchandise on your wall.

Basically Levi’s has found a way to mimic in-store peer pressure online. “Oh I like that top, you should get it.” or “Oh shit, Lucy likes those jeans. I better order those before she does. Maybe then Chris will notice me.” Alright maybe it isn’t that severe, but nonetheless it’s a smart way for Levi’s to drive more sales.

We’re looking forward to seeing the results. Here’s a vid on how it works:

Gizmodo.com and iPhone generate buzz

Gizmodo.com and iPhone generate buzz

So…unless you’ve were hiding under rocks for the past couple of days you probably didn’t hear the news about the newest iPhone being acquired by Gizmodo editor Jason Chen.

Now while this was the latest news we couldn’t help but wonder the amazing power of word of mouth and buzz combined with online.

It seems that over night, literally, this blog which was well known within the tech community suddenly has become a household name that everyone is talking about. It was even featured on the national morning talkshow circuit such as Good Morning America (GMA).

Take a look at this pic, it displays Gizmodo.com traffic.

Gizmodo.com Traffic

Gizmodo.com Traffic

Not bad if you consider the fact that Gizmodo paid about $5,000 for the scope on this iPhone.

How many companies out there can claim to have these sort of results with a such a small media budget. Just goes to show that sometimes you have to take a risk.

In Gizmodo’s case they did…and it paid off big.

Emily Richmond - Kickstarter.com

Emily Richmond - Kickstarter.com

This is Emily Richmond – filmmaker and sailor who has circumnavigated the globe, and she’s 24. How, you might ask does a young artist afford to pursue such a grand and expensive passion?

The answer is old school, but in a very cool and new school way.

Fundraising has been around forever. It’s how Columbus was able to pursue his journey of discovering the Americas, and it’s how organizations like Charity Water are able to provide clean water for thousands.

The only problem with fundraising is that its mostly limited to a small network of friends and family, and their connections.

But all this has now changed. KickStarter.com is how Emily is fundraising for her latest voyage. It’s taking the playbook from micro-lending and transforming it into macro-fundraising, or crowd funding as KickStarter calls it. The idea is such a subtle and simple shift from organizations like Kiva.org that it’s both ingenious and leaves us scratching our heads thinking, “why the hell didn’t I think of that?!?”

It’s awesome.

Here’s how it works. Anyone, like Emily Richmond, can log into kickstarter.com and create a profile for their cause, adventure, project, or other great idea. They simply set a goal and a deadline for reaching it, and wha la!

Complete strangers can donate and become part of the project. The keys to successfully raising funds, as outlined by founder Perry Chen, are: be real, have a clear goal, offer fun rewards, show you can execute, involve the audience and spread the word. Sounds simple enough, right?

If nothing else, it’s a chance to start a project you’ve always dreamt of. You know the one you’re thinking about right now.

The U.S Military is taking a completely different approach in its effort to reach and rebuild Afghanistan.

Lt. Col Allen McCormick is leading the initiative to target Afghan civilians in a way that is sure to produce little to no casualties in a war that has left so many dead, and even homeless. McCormick and the U.S. seek to help rebuild Afghanistan tapping into something the Afghani people will relate to – their history, customs and culture.

Pretty bold move if you ask us. A military that uses more than just weapons to fight back. Kuddos to the creative team behind this strategic move…and as always we support our men in women in uniform.