Monthly Archives: October 2011

the end of end-to-end online print?

Khol Vinh is a designer. Not that unusual, but his previous job as design director for makes him unique and his skillful accomplishments considerable.

He publishes his highly refined blog ‘Subtraction’ on the Expression Engine platform, which alone qualifies him for a spot at the podium. Khol takes what might be the long tail view of publishing content for consumption when he predicts that he, “…just can’t see the end-to-end magazine format surviving.”

In a short, insightful interview on digiday, he challeges the cultural tradition that starts on C1 and proceeds to C4, digital pages turning at regular intervals like scheduled stops on a train trip.

Read more of Mr. Vinh’s insight into digital magazine publishing here. Originally sourced in a posting at Poynter.

barnes and nobles says opt out is ok

like official government mail, only different

Important Information Regarding Your Borders Account

I’m not going to the mat on this one, but if you want to send me an email after you’ve bought up the physical and intellectual assets of your former competitor, please try to keep from insulting my assumed by you parochial view of online reality at the same time.

Non-breaking news: Borders Book Stores are no more. Bulletin: Chain declares bankruptcy. Bulletin: Assets bought by competitor.

My good friend William Lynch, CEO of Barnes & Noble, wrote me the other day on behalf of the entire B&N team to make sure I was aware of important information regarding my (former) and seldom used Borders account.

Skip down to fourth paragraph: “It’s important for you to understand however you have the absolute right to opt-out of having your customer data transferred to Barnes & Noble.” (Bold theirs.)

Then follow a couple more graphs of boilerplate and schmooze, but basically the message seems to be driven by B&N’s attempt to spin this in their favor by offering me the option of bailing by a date certain, after which they’ll just go ahead and act on the info as if no opinion equals okey-dokey.

In fact, they could have, and would have, curried a lot more favor by allowing me to opt in to their marketing plan. This would have had the added benefit to solicit more personal choices, including genres, platforms, frequency, etc. All presumeably valuable, driven by the coupon with sign-up bribe good for something or other, coffee maybe, MP3 download possibly, after a short survey.

On the other hand, they’ve got a probably outdated windfall list of – well, a bunch of – email addresses just ready to be acted on if they don’t hear back! Opportunity knocked. No one answered.

My guess is they’ll never know what they didn’t know.

an honest product

a perfect combination of flavor, value and integrity

It’s a lucky day when I discover product integrity, honesty, marketing savvy and economy in the humblest of packages. Blue Runner Foods cans beans, Creole sauces, and chili components at their Gonzales, Louisiana facility just off Interstate 10 halfway between Baton Rouge and New Orleans. This is the only product carried by my local (Florida) Winn Dixie, but all their varieties are available on their online store.

The thing about red beans and rice as a staple is that preparation isn’t difficult. It does take some time, but unless you’re planning on feeding a junior high football team, it’s not really conducive to small batch quantities. I like mine simmered with a little chopped andouille.

After that, there’s not much else to say. Their web site is basic: down to earth, practical, easy to navigate and to the point. They process and can food. Nothing could be simpler, so why complicate matters?