everybody

An Enormous Chinese Price War Backfired For Everybody Involved

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/an-enormous-chinese-price-war-backfired-for-everybody-involved-2012-9

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Some of China’s largest retailers are facing an official investigation for deceptive sales practices after a recent price war spiraled out of control.  

At the Wall Street Journal, Laurie Burkitt reports that one company’s promotion drove a race to the bottom. From the piece:     

Beijing Jingdong sparked the latest price war last month after Chief Executive Liu Qiangdong said on his microblogging site that he would dispatch 5,000 agents to check prices at rival outlets and would undercut their prices at least 10%. Suning and Gome responded by agreeing to offer consumers lower prices on the companies’ e-commerce sites.

It worked at first; Beijing Jingdong’s 360buy.com sold upwards of 250 million yuan worth of goods in three hours.

But then the competing offers spread to Chinese social media and snowballed to the point where companies were apparently unable to offer stated discounts and ran out of items, sparking widespread anger. 

China has many consumers, but not much in the way of consumer protection. Pressure on these retailers from slumping demand and rising inflation mean they occasionally resort to dubious pricing practices.

It’s a sign what’s at times still an awkward hybrid economy, even as China moves towards surpassing the United States as the world’s largest economy. 

Rapidly changing prices are becoming an inevitable part of online retail. Combining that with brick and mortar outlets and the sheer size of China’s burgeoning consumer class created a complete disaster.

See also: Here’s What Led To Explosive Growth For Chinese And Indian Entrepreneurs

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Thursday, September 6th, 2012 news No Comments

This Wendy’s Coupon Offering A ‘Free Small Hot Original Redhead’ Is Confusing Everybody

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/wendys-coupon-fail-2012-5

redhead wendys coupon

Ah, the perils of confusing coupons.

This coupon from Wendy’s recently caused quite a fuss when it was posted on Reddit. The general reaction was: what (or who) the heck is the “Redhead” that it’s selling?

No, Wendy’s isn’t peddling crimson-haired humans with any purchase.

Luckily, some of the more well-informed Redditors shared their knowledge:

“A “redhead” is their stupid coffee 🙁 I got all excited when I saw the sign thinking it was a red, spicy buffalo sandwich (or a real redhead which I would have preferred 😉 ) But it is just coffee :(“

And now we know.

On Wendy’s end, it shows a disconnect in its marketing. Something like the Redhead, which obviously isn’t a commonly known brand, needs a bit of context.

NOW SEE: 13 Epic Twitter Fails By Big Brands >

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Thursday, May 17th, 2012 news No Comments

No Netflix for You! Come Back, Never! [NetFlix]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5892105/comcast-no-netflix-for-you-come-back-never

Comcast: No Netflix for You! Come Back, Never!Comcast has issued a strongly-worded statement clarifying its position in those discussions Netflix was rumored to be engaging in earlier this week: not us, not our devices, not ever.

In Tuesday’s reports, Netflix hinted that at least one provider was willing to trial it by year’s end. Comcast would like everybody know that it isn’t them. “We have no plans to offer access to Netflix to our customers through our Xfinity TV service, no matter what device,” Comcast spokeswoman Alana Davis told FierceCable.

Instead, Comcast is exploring the possibility of allowing access to its On-Demand library through TiVo Premiere DVR’s

The provider has also developed its own video subscription service called Steampix. It’s designed to compete head to head with Netflix—allowing Xfinity subscribers to access TV series and movies wirelessly and remotely—but includes the conventional bits of flair we’ve come to expect from cable like an bundled channels. Because who doesn’t want to pay through the nose for content they don’t watch? [Fierce Cable via BGR]

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Sunday, March 11th, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

No Netflix for You! Come Back, Never! [NetFlix]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5892105/comcast-no-netflix-for-you-come-back-never

Comcast: No Netflix for You! Come Back, Never!Comcast has issued a strongly-worded statement clarifying its position in those discussions Netflix was rumored to be engaging in earlier this week: not us, not our devices, not ever.

In Tuesday’s reports, Netflix hinted that at least one provider was willing to trial it by year’s end. Comcast would like everybody know that it isn’t them. “We have no plans to offer access to Netflix to our customers through our Xfinity TV service, no matter what device,” Comcast spokeswoman Alana Davis told FierceCable.

Instead, Comcast is exploring the possibility of allowing access to its On-Demand library through TiVo Premiere DVR’s

The provider has also developed its own video subscription service called Steampix. It’s designed to compete head to head with Netflix—allowing Xfinity subscribers to access TV series and movies wirelessly and remotely—but includes the conventional bits of flair we’ve come to expect from cable like an bundled channels. Because who doesn’t want to pay through the nose for content they don’t watch? [Fierce Cable via BGR]

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Sunday, March 11th, 2012 Uncategorized No Comments

Caterina Fake Launches Pinwheel, Which Lets You Leave Notes Around The World

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/caterina-fake-launches-pinwheel-which-lets-you-leave-notes-around-the-world-2012-2


Caterina Fake

Caterina Fake, who previously cofounded Flickr and Hunch, has launched a new startup called Pinwheel, which lets you leave vitrtual notes around the world.

She announced the launch on her personal blog earlier today.

Enter the Internet of things, where you can choose to follow people, places or things. The notes you leave can be private, or you can share them with everything and everybody. 

The possibilities seem endless.

For instance, Fake shared a note she wrote for her friend Lauren:

note

Perhaps this would be a more useful note when you’re roaming around town: “Find me a Nearby Toilet NOW.” 

That seems to be coming soon: Fake wrote on her blog that she plans on building out a notification system so you can get pinged when someone you follow sends out a note.

We knew last year that True Ventures, SV Angel and her fund, Founder Collective, invested.

As far as making money, Fake is betting on selling sponsored notes.

The site is still in private beta — you can sign up here for an invite to try out the web and mobile app. The iOS version is coming up next.

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Friday, February 17th, 2012 news No Comments

Supreme Court Gives the Go Ahead for Re-Copyrighting Public Domain Works [Copyright]

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5877740/supreme-court-gives-the-go-ahead-for-re+copyrighting-public-domain-works

Supreme Court Gives the Go Ahead for Re-Copyrighting Public Domain WorksYou’ve got to be kidding me. The US Supreme Court ruled Wednesday that Congress can remove works from the public domain and re-copyright them in order to bring the the pieces into compliance with international copyright schemes. Yeah, because that doesn’t run completely against the spirit of copyright law or anything.

For one reason or another, the American copyright protections of many famous, foreign works—including H.G. Wells’ Things to Come, Fritz Lang’s Metropolis, Prokofiev’s Classical Symphony and Peter and the Wolf, Shostakovich’s Symphony 14, Cello Concerto and everything by Igor Stravinsky—moved into the public domain despite still being copyrighted overseas. To “correct” this issue, Congress passed legislation in 1994 that would move the works in question back to protected status and comply with the Berne Convention, an international copyright treaty.

This week, the Supreme Court ruled on a case brought by a coalition of educators, performers, and film archivists who rely on public domain works such as these for their livelihoods. If these pieces are place back under copyright, this group (like everybody else) simply can’t use them. However in a 6-2 ruling—Justices Stephen Breyer and Samuel Alito dissenting—the Court ruled that bringing these works into agreement with the international treaty did not violate the First Amendment rights of those people using the works as they are now (no, those folks will just have to pay licensing fees to perform), nor does it set a precedent for Congress to eventually push for perpetual copyright protections.

In his dissent, Justice Breyer stated that the congressional legislation,

bestows monetary rewards only on owners of old works in the American public domain. At the same time, the statute inhibits the dissemination of those works, foreign works published abroad after 1923, of which there are many millions, including films, works of art, innumerable photographs, and, of course, books – books that (in the absence of the statute) would assume their rightful places in computer-accessible databases, spreading knowledge throughout the world.

As Anthony Falzone, executive director of the Fair Use Project at Stanford University commented, the ruling “suggests Congress is not required to pay particularly close attention to the interests of the public when it passes copyright laws.” Well, yeah, it’s Congress. They don’t need to read bills and amendments, they don’t need to represent their constituents. They jus need to ensure hard-working people like Igor Stravinsky gets the royalty checks he needs so desperately. Hey, a guy’s gotta eat—especially when he’s been dead since 1971. [ArsTechnicatop art: the AP]


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Thursday, January 19th, 2012 news No Comments

How The NBA Lockout Is Killing Businesses

Source: http://www.businessinsider.com/nba-lockout-infographic-2011-11


nba lockout infographic

The NBA lockout a bummer for a fans, but a back-breaker for businesses.

Jane Hendrick put together a nifty infographic for G+ on who the lockout is hurting, and how badly.

It’s pretty concise, and does a nice job illustrating the collateral damage of the dispute.

The NBA lockout, where nobody scores and everybody loses. Let’s take a look at how bad…

Here are the five players who are losing the most: more than $1.5 million per bi-weekly paycheck

Cities are getting hammered too, especially small ones where NBA teams have a huge impact on the local economy

See the rest of the story at Business Insider

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Tuesday, November 22nd, 2011 news No Comments

NYC’s Depressingly Congested Traffic, Mapped by Taxicab GPS

Source: http://gizmodo.com/5501068/nycs-depressingly-congested-traffic-mapped-by-taxicab-gps

NYC's Depressingly Congested Traffic, Mapped by Taxicab GPSWhy I take the subway: This is what NYC traffic congestion looks like, charted by the GPS units built into cabs. The real surprise is that average travel speeds remain a crushingly slow 7MPH, even when everybody’s at work. [NYT]

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Thursday, March 25th, 2010 news No Comments

Dr. Augustine Fou is Digital Consigliere to marketing executives, advising them on digital strategy and Unified Marketing(tm). Dr Fou has over 17 years of in-the-trenches, hands-on experience, which enables him to provide objective, in-depth assessments of their current marketing programs and recommendations for improving business impact and ROI using digital insights.

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