Share ideas that inspire. FALLON PLANNERS (and co-conspirators) are freely invited to post trends, commentary, obscure ephemera and insightful rants regarding the experience of branding.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

On Second Thought, How Much Should I Respect The Media Snacker?

On a recent post, I added a note about respecting media snackers. It wasn't until a few days later that I actually had the time to think a bit more about what it meant and why (or why not) I should be trying to respect snackers.

Truth is, providing content that could've been found anywhere (ie, in simply reposting a video) doesn't really make me feel like I accomplished a lot (other than ending a post drought). Sure, I do it from time to time (sometimes too often, given crazy schedules), but the posts I feel best about are the ones that took me more than 3 minutes to put up. The ones I've rewritten 10 times. The ones where I've added pictures and video simply as extras (or not at all), not as the focal point of the post itself.

I can understand the desire to respect media snackers (and admittedly, its a label that often applies to my own media habits), but specifically when it comes to blogging I don't know how much I really should. In fact, sometimes I think I give a bit too much respect to the snackers and don't dedicate enough effort to creating a more meaningful post that requires me to think about and clearly state my point of view on something (but I'm trying to get back on track).

But curious to hear what others think. What are you looking for when you come here (and to other blogs)? Quick bites of content, or posts that make you stop and think (or somewhere in between)? I'm sure it varies depending on the blog you're reading (I know it does for me), but interested to hear thoughts on the media snacker topic in general.

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Role Of A Country's Brand

Tata Motors today will be announced the winner of the bidding war over Jaguar and Land Rover from Ford. The latter has been struggling to do much of anything really with the British brands and has been looking to sell them off for some much needed cash.

But, the sale has many US Jaguar dealers upset. They believe that Indian ownership will dilute their luxury brand (as if Ford was the most prestigious automaker).

Personal biases aside, the whole incident was interesting to me because, in an increasingly global world where we often like to think that country of origin has less and less impact on what a brand/product means to people (well, perhaps except China), its still a strong issue. Indian business men and women have been left feeling like they've been slapped in the face, more or less told by these US dealers that the brand of India downgrades the brand of Jaguar/Land Rover. While on one hand (if I push myself to be very understanding) I suppose I can see why these dealers have reacted this way (it's still a third world country, blah, blah), seems to me that India has done quite a bit to prove itself as a nation on the rise, and deserving of the chance.

But it also raises a broader question that I have been thinking about recently- is there another product category that has tied itself so closely to the country it is produced in? For decades American car companies have used (and continue to use) brand America (though it may not be in their favor anymore) to sell cars. It's amazing to me how strongly the brand of a nation is tied to the cars it produces, wise or not. Hell, some foreign automakers even feel like they have to defend themselves for being "foreign".

Can any of you readers think of another product or category that so heavily associates itself with the country it comes from? And is this something you see continuing (growing/declining?)- in car makers or other categories? I've been thinking that that where a product comes from will increasingly become irrelevant, but this made me pause (and, perhaps, it is yet another sign of how out of touch car makers are with what's going on in the world).

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Top 10 quotes of 2007

Yale Book of Quotations compiled its list for 2007 (hope nothing memorable happens in the next ten days).

Number one was "Don't tase me bro!" It's compiled by Fred R. Shapiro, an associate librarian and lecturer in legal research at the Yale Law School.

It's interesting to consider these ten quotes in the context of a collective benchmark for our world in 2007 (and by interesting, I mean scary).

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Politics 2.0: Barely Political Takes On Ann Coulter

Want to be perfected? Look to Ann Coulter.

The funniest part is how little the peeps at BP actually have to try in order to portray Coulter as quite the extremist. But frightening to me is how many people in this country listen to and actually approve of what she has to say. One of her more recent books has nearly a thousand customer reviews on Amazon, with close to 600 giving her 4 stars or

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

The Whopper Freakout

This is genius.

(and in response to Seth's comments, I guess I'm doing my best to respect the Media Snacker).

Monday, December 03, 2007

"The Youth Vote"

Future Majority, a blog that reports on youth voting, put together a set of tips for reporting on "the youth vote."

Tip #1 is my favorite:

The youth vote is not synonymous with students. In fact, students make up only a small part of the eligible youth vote. Only 21% of all 18-29 year olds are currently attending a college or university. That means that when you report on "students", you are leaving out the other 79% of all the individuals that make up the "youth vote." These people serve in our military, are struggling to raise families - and yes, have very different concerns from college students. I understand that makes it difficult for you to cram them into a cookie-cutter story about student aid activism and tuition costs, but you do them and your readers and our democracy a disservice when you limit your coverage to students.

Mike Connery, one of the site's bloggers, put together the tips after the CNN debate in which a college student was forced by producers to ask Hilary Clinton whether she preferred diamonds or pearls, instead of the original question about the Yucca Mountain nuclear situation.

The woman later lambasted CNN for forcing such a fluff question. This whole mini-drama falls in line with a topic of conversation that comes up frequently at Likemind: that "youth" are more mobile, more connected and more able to voice their opinions than any generation before them. This is the only world they know, and are aghast when that right is stepped on--as in the instance of diamonds v pearls. Yes, there's a twinge of self-righteousness that every sprouting adult experiences, but this generation is more able to retaliate when they've been wronged. Are they taking full advantage? Depends on the metrics we're using to judge. If we go back to voting, 49% of 18-29 year olds voted in the last election, a higher percentage than 65+. So watch out, youth have a big stick.