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Archive for July, 2009

Picture 1UPDATE: This ridiculous episode continues with Apple expecting developers to refund app customers out of their own pockets. READ.

UPDATE: Fast Company comes out with an article titled ‘Seven (More) Reasons to Ditch Your iPhone

@willgcrawford, @therealecar and I (@miketobias) had lengthy conversation about telecommunication companies. We all agreed that there is too much power given to this utility. These companies should not be restricting applications like Google Voice, an app that allows you to set up a 10-digit phone number, make free calls to other users, and send free text messages.

News broke recently that the Apple app store will not have Google Voice in its catalog. The reason? It resembles existing apps on iPhone…

It’s something that angered a lot of people.

So here’s where we’re at…

New iPhone 3GS. Sprint says screw you on MMS and Data Tethering. We’ll get to it when we get to it.

Termination fees to upgrade.

Large price tags. You may be able to get a $99 iPhone, but that data plan empty your wallet.

Fragile devices.

And finally this GV bullshit.

So in regards to that whole iPhone/GV thing that made Michael Arrington give up his iPhone, I say he’s dead right to boycott the world’s most popular mobile device.

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I’m writing a screenplay with one psuedo-sociopath, and I had some time to peruse Barnes and Noble before volunteering today. A psychology book, The Sociopath Next Door by Martha Stout, caught my eye. I read the first couple of chapters, and naturally I started thinking about famous sociopaths in film and the structures that deliver their inhumane stories to audiences.

Showtime’s ‘Dexter’ popped up because I’m making my way through season 2. To me, part of the magic behind its writing is the main character’s internal monologues that narrate the action. Being inside of a sociopath’s mind helps us imagine the unimaginable. See, Dr. Stout says that the state of pure guiltlessness is unimaginable by people with consciences. This is exactly why I think we’d be drawn to these characters – and ultimately why we’d prefer a story where we hear the character’s thoughts.

Now another sociopath popped up in my head: Javier Bardem’s Chigurh from ‘No Country for Old Men.’ Now the Coen bros’ script definitely has no internal monologues. We don’t get to hear his thoughts, and it still worked. We still got that Chigurh, at least after seeing him kill a random driver, doesn’t feel guilt for killing. Then he explains it later, I think. I’m not sure; it’s a long movie.

So both obviously worked, but which one’s better? I’m going to go with ‘Dexter.’ I love seeing the character Dexter in normal situations and hearing his sociopathic thoughts. Though, word of caution, it makes him more humane than Chigurh (despite him killing someone every episode.) That’s because internal monologues offer justification and internal conflict – things we can relate to – whereas Chigurh’s guarded mind makes him more monstrous.

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So, at a poolside BBQ yesterday, an advertising professional was talking about how brand war strategies are really just real war strategies applied to marketing. I like this notion. It makes me think of Duplicity when Tom Wilkinson and Paul Giamatti, playing two execs, fight each other in slow motion on the tarmac of an airport.

If the minds behind our advertising think of media as a battlefield, my question is how do I destroy my competitors on community-like sites like Twitter. Well, first, I think it’s all about promoting your great ideas first. Then of course subtly hinting that your ideas are slightly better than the competitors.

I don’t know. I’m just picking up some manuals on warfare from the Revolutionary War. This way I can learn how to overcome a brand by bludgeoning them with my musket before a pint at the Pioneer Inn.

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