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Outsourcing Fail

Gambling with Jobs

The US Senate recently blocked a measure designed to reduce the outsourcing of US jobs that many corporations pursue in the relentless drive to reduce costs.

Modern Globalization is a system

Globalization must be analyzed like a system. Data, Information, knowledge, Innovation, and wisdom are profoundly related in a system. If you take away one of the components, the others become worthless.  If you destroy one component, the entire structure could fail.

Everyone knows that data, information, knowledge, innovation, and wisdom are related.  If I corrupt the data, then the associated information, knowledge, innovation, and wisdom are also corrupted.  Likewise, if I eliminate any of these elements, the system fails.

Focus on Core competency – what core?

The standard argument for outsourcing is that knowledge workers are better allocated in innovation jobs so “we can better focus on our core – and heck, we can all save a little dough in the process”.  But when we outsource our knowledge economy, the innovation economy is choked off.    The knowledge economy is the source of the Innovation Economy.  The Knowledge economy is also the recipient of the information economy which transforms data and information into useful tools, ideas, and products.

Rate Of Change is Innovation

The rate of change of the innovation economy is directly proportional to the INCREASE not the OUTSOURCING of the knowledge economy.  This is the calculus of outsourcing.  If, on the other hand, it is in you best interest to keep a population poor, weak, and unable to organize into powerful collectives, then yes, outsourcing is an effective method.

Does School Interfere With Education?

I guess that is could be considered sacrilege for a college professor to suggest that higher education is inadequate in some way.  My position is that the college degree must go away in favor of strategic combinations of high resolution knowledge assets.  The irony is that those who really “get it” understand “school” better than the schools.

The price of college education compared to the value of college education in society is skewing toward obsolescence. The news reports are filled with stories of unemployed MBAs and Engineers.  Over qualified, out of date, over generalized, specialized into obsolescence are all risk conditions that can make college a liability, not an asset.

There are many articles in these archives that outline my opinions on the subject. So here is what the kids say….

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Culture: When Engagement Is Not Optional

pLASMA bALLToday we see Social Media duplicating many of the functions of earlier society by storing community wisdom, applying social vetting, and deploying social currencies.

It takes a Community

Here is an article is about a a person who learned through social media profiling that her fiance was active in hobbies that conflicted with her moral constitution – before the wedding instead of after.  In the old days, the community would also profile each individual based on the social record of their behavior.

Social Capitalism

Here is a video article that discusses how social media is  duplicating many functions of the corporation outside the construct of the corporation. Factors of production increasingly enter the org chart as a social media application.  We now question whether the corporation itself is the sole vehicle of wealth creation.

Social Currency

We see social media duplicating many of the functions of the financial system where currency, credit scores, banks, land, labor, and capital are being replaced by social currency, social vetting, social capital, creative capital, and social entrepreneurs.

Macro vs. Micro

We see divisions of scale from the long-winded one-sided content of the static web presence to the micro blogging applications that more closely resemble a conversation.  Time factors are accelerated to the point where real-time is not fast enough.

Local vs. Global

We see an emerging segmentation between Local Social and Global Social. At first global leverage was the awarded the small entrepreneur with something to offer to the world.  Now ‘Local Social’ enjoys substantial leverage over global corporations by reorganizing the way people prioritize and experience each other and their community.

Everyone is a node

Taking an analogy from the physics of electricity, the term “potential” means the difference in energy between two nodes.  The greater the difference, the bigger the spark and the greater the impact.   The local energy at each node influences the direction and size of sparks between nodes.  As people accumulate ‘Social Current’, their position relative to those around them changes. Likewise, their potential also changes relative to the ‘Social Current’ of others. Everyone has some potential relative to every other node.

Integration has arrived

Much like the knowledge economy integrated, but did not replace, the agrarian economy, Social Media will not replace the corporation, the financial system, dissertation, conversations, localization or globalization.  Rather, everyone becomes a corporation, everyone prints their own social currency, everyone publishes their intentions, everyone has local and global leverage.  That’s what Integration is all about.

A ‘culture of one’ is moot.

It is not surprising then that our culture itself is now being defined in terms of social media with effective aggregation of  social norms, storage of social wisdom, and medium of exchange for community ideals.  The true test of “culture status” is when engagement is no longer an optional.  Without engagement, there is no culture.


A Community of Knowledge Assets

A Community of Knowledge AssetsOur culture organizes itself around winners and losers. Corporations reflect this competitive nature to the core of their Capitalist doctrine. Sports analogies abound across the enterprise straight through to the HR department always on the lookout for the most amount of superstar for the least amount of money.

Social media has every industry trying to understand the concept of community. Among the most difficult ideas to grasp is that knowledge assets in a community live on a bell curve, not in winner and loser columns. Everyone is an expert at something and nobody is an expert at everything. Someone who is not performing adequately is simply a misallocated asset, not flotsam subject to jettison at the next layoff or outsource “opportunity”.

A Community of Knowledge Assets

Like most assets, there is a perfectly legitimate market for everyone in a community – nobody need be excluded, marginalized or laid off. Social Media is turning the tables on the hierarchy and old winners who don’t play by the new rules quickly become the new losers. Maybe we ought to run our economy like a community instead of losing so badly at trying to be a winner.

A Community of Knowledge Assets

Video: The Calculus of Global Outsourcing

calculus-failPicture credit

The knowledge economy is a completely different asset than the industrial revolution’s Land, labor, Capital economy. Yet, our modern accounting systems and even our definitions of terms such as innovation, work, employment, education, are built from industrial era or military logistic roots.

Modern Globalization is a system – it must be analyzed like a system. Data, Information, knowledge, and Innovation are profoundly related in a system. If you take away one of the components, the others become worthless.

When we outsource our knowledge economy, the innovation economy is exterminated. The Ingenesist project specifies an Innovation Economy built on social media which will capture the knowledge inventory of communities – let’s hope that we have not forgotten how to build an ….

Video: Taxonomy for Community Knowledge Inventory

2009 Forecast DocAny taxonomy that is used to classify information is a candidate for the classification of knowledge. This is because knowledge is related to information in a differential equation that also includes data and innovation (another blog post).

The trick is that everyone needs to be using the same taxonomy so that we can all access knowledge inventories of the people around us as easily as it is to access books on Amazon.com. This will lead to a trade in knowledge assets formally the sole domain of corporations through the process of industrialization (yet another blog post) .

Please enjoy these videos, use them as you wish and let us know what you think.

Video: Tangible Knowledge; The Holy Grail of Social Media

Accounting Balance sheets have tangible assets and intangible assets. Unfortunately, intangible often means invisible and those on the dark side of the moon wind up in the unemployment line.

What if knowledge assets were tangible? What if you owned your knowledge like a company owns a structure or specialized machinery? What if it could be quantified and qualified so that it resembles all other tangible assets? Easy answer…entrepreneurs will trade it, like money.

Deep Web; Database of databases of databases….

We have posted a few articles about the Deep Web and presented an emerging technology project that promises to provide a database of databases for the next great development of Internet Search.  This short post considers the significance of one aspect of Deep Web Search.

Economics is the science of incentives

Google Search has provided a set of incentives that drives people to document their world by blogging, developing social media, and creating seemingly infinite video content.  The ability to see and be seen is the essence of market economics.

While the promise of searching a huge store of databases may not sound like Saturday social night at the local drive in burger joint, it does by extension, introduce new incentives.  The new technology will drive people to build databases.  A new generation of entrepreneurs will collect, organize, analyze and create – not information – but data.

Database of databases of databases

The first things entrepreneurs will organize are human knowledge data – starting with their own, then relating it to others. Not unlike the human genome project, the vast human knowledge reservoir will be mapped. Entrepreneurs will enter their communities (on line, neighborhood, work, school, church, social networks) and create a database for what other people know and parse the data in any number of important and useful databases.

The reason for this is simple; data are collections of human observations.This is the only thing people are willing to pay for. Markets cannot and do not get any more fundamental than that.

Old News is Bad News

Anyone who follows the news, social media, or some of the tech blogs may have noticed a lot of rehashing of old data – every blog has a posts about how social media will “really catch on”.   New media isn’t so new anymore.  The only thing that makes money is is the disclosure or new data – followed by weeks of rehashing of the data all the way down the rankings.

Next Economic Paradigm

All Financial instruments are characterized in terms of a quantity and a quality. Real news, real insight, and real productivity results from new and reliable data, qualified interpretation of data, and relevant analysis of data – relative to time.   The value of money is directly associated with the quantity and quality of the data representing money – relative to time.

Summary: Going to the source

Data alone are useless.  People must process data into information – the backbone of all economics.  Human knowledge and productivity is the source of all information – derived from data.  Therefore, the only things people are willing to pay for are, in fact, data. Monetization of social media may be the deep dive into the data. Do the math. That’s big news.

Deep Web: The Data Will Set You Free

Conversational Currency Blog continues to present components of the Next Economic Paradigm as we spot the integrations. We believe that one of these features is the Deep Web, estimated to be 500 times bigger than the surface web or “Google-verse”.

One way to get an idea of how the deep web is hidden from view is to perform any simple Google search except add the term “database”. You immediately notice that an entirely different set of results appear – much of it is extremely interesting and useful. If you do this several times over several terms you will soon ask yourself:

“Where can I find a database of databases?”

Now take your original search term and add “database of databases” to it and again an entirely new search result appears. The results become highly localized and less organized. The results show FAR LESS ADVERTISING and even a few more subscription based data enterprises. But more than anything, the results give you an idea of how large the Deep Dark Web may be.

Now return to the surface web and visit your favorite blog. Where exactly are bloggers getting their insights? Follow the trail of references back to the sources (pass through Wikipedia and Forrester) and you will eventually wind up back at the Deep web.

Revenge of the Librarians

Now here comes Internous. A technology start up by library Scientists who shines the light on the Deep Dark Web with a search engine concept that combines both algorithmic search with human classification. By introducing a new standard called The Internet Search Environment Number, Internous will soon organize the database of databases.

The Next Economic Paradigm

Meanwhile, The Ingenesist Project has specified a parallel financial system with a currency similar to the dollar except backed by innovation instead of debt (both are a proxy for future productivity). In the specifications they call for a knowledge inventory system for what people in a community know (“what’s between their ears?”) as an requirement for a proxy for future productivity in a new financial system. While nobody can predict exactly how this may eventually arise, we most certainly will watch new technologies such as the ISEN very carefully.

Special thanks to Matt Theobald. Here is the Internous video – well worth the time!!

Pirates, Anarchy, and the Monetization of Social Media

(Editor’s note: some ideas adapted from writings of Peter T. Leeson and introduces the idea of IOUs trading as a proxy for production.  The monetization of social media will likely evolve from such an idea)

No sane blogger would post an article suggesting that anarchy is superior to government as a means of producing widespread cooperation…or would they?

As Milton Friedman put it, “government is essential both as a forum for determining the ‘rules of the game’ and as an umpire to interpret and enforce the rules decided upon.” Most great anarchist theories are duly faulted for significant problems coping with cheating and violence.

Nonetheless, large swaths or anarchy exist today.  For example, there is no World Court to enforce World Law, if such laws existed.  Nor is there a Global commercial law to enforce contracts between Global traders. Even at a local level there is no guarantee that the government will protect your property or enforce your contracts.

A common objection to anarchy is that without government the strong will plunder the weak because the weak have an inherent inability to protect themselves. How can self-governance alone protect the weak?

Social Piracy?

Why is college measured in “degrees”?

 

(Editor’s note; This is the first in a series of articles that challenges the “degree system” of knowledge measurement as archaic and irrelevant to what is actually happening in the world today.  Like the resume system  – it is ridiculous if not outright damaging to the prospect of knowledge behaving, and therefore, trading like a financial instrument.  

Why do we still care about college ‘degrees”?

The information that fuels the next economic paradigm will not be captured in the form of college degrees; rather, it will be captured in extremely detailed granularity of unique collections of knowledge assets in diverse combinations of persons that solve complex puzzles – and then share the solution with others.

This begs the question, why do we still care about University Degrees?

Bretton Woods II – For the Biosphere

In continuation of our series on New Economic Paradigm, the famed environmentalist Dr. David Suzuki points the an outdated financial system where the biosphere is treated as an externality to economic growth.

“When economists and politicians met in Bretton Woods, Maine, in 1944, they faced a world where war had devastated countrysides, cities, and economies. So they tried to devise solutions. They pegged currency to the American greenback and looked to the (terrible) twins, the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank, to get economies going again.”

Whereas Bretton Woods (1) was tasked with rebuilding a war torn world, a new Financial Doctrine is needed to rebuild a war torn Biosphere. Economics as a discipline is based on the fundamental effects of selfishness and Bretton Woods demonstrated that we could in fact define “self” in terms of including the preservation of others. Now the task is to define “self” as including the Biosphere for which a new economic accord could certainly accommodate.

After all, the biosphere in an economic component. Like humans, it is selfish and will easily progress to a new “economic” state in response to economic inputs. In other words, don’t worry about destroying the World, it will take care of itself with or without humans.

Dr. Suzuki identifies two flaws in the current economic paradigm:

In Search of A New Economic Paradigm; Part 1

Too many things too big to fail.

It could be currency collapse, an environmental collapse, a pandemic collapse, a food collapse, a water collapse, Energy collapse, a political collapse, or any number of Black Swan events – something somewhere too big to fail will fail. When that happens, it will take everything else down with it.  After all, that’s what too big to fail means.

Look on the Sunny Side

The Idea of a New Economic Paradigm is gaining modern popularity.  This declaration is a indeed a grand and lofty goal for the collective human consciousness to grasp.  But grasp it we must; both Socialism and Capitalism are bankrupted social models. Quit bickering, It’s time to move on

Do something, anything:

The point of this recurring article is to understand the ideas of other people as to what a new economic paradigm is or needs to accomplish.  The following are a few that I’ve dug up and will feature here as a repeating feature Called:  In Search of The New Economic Paradigm.

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It’s Time For A New Economic Paradigm by Joe Kresse, Foundation for Global Community

Freedom of Speech; Use it Wisely

The recent Google quandary involving that most unfortunate rendering of Mrs. Obama led to many interesting articles about the invisible line between freedom of speech and profiting from indecency against another person (or group of persons).

Among the more intriguing conclusions is that those who exercise their freedom of speech should do so at the price of their anonymity.  As such, the community can likewise exercise their freedom of speech in response…sort of a market incentive system, it seems.

So what exactly would happen if the offensive content were accompanied by the name, address, business, and email of the person who created it?  How would their personal freedom be enhanced or restricted based on their contribution to the “self-discovery” of society?  How does a social medium enhance or restrict the inalienable rights so preserved in our nation’s constitution by our infinitely wise founding fathers?

I suppose that the founding fathers also had an issue with anonymity.  By virtue of their signature on the declaration of independence, they were willing to pay for their freedom of speech with their lives. This singular act is what empowered the document most. They bet their skin to preserve their oppressor’s freedom of speech regarding the same matter of independence.  Today we call that courage but in most communities it is common practice:

Goldman Sachs: Bernie Madoff on Steroids

(Editor’s note: in all fairness, the GS initiative does represent a fundamental shift away from the Friedman doctrine of amoral capitalism.)

Money does not represent gold, solver, or oil.  Money represents human productivity – yours and mine.  Goldman Sachs is about to award the greatest ANNUAL payout for its employees – over 700,000 dollars EACH.

The words “money” and “productivity” should be interchangeable. So, what exactly did Goldman Sachs produce in order to amass such astonishing amounts of “money?”  Where is the corresponding astonishing productivity?

The line of fire is quite obvious; the productivity is really “future” productivity in the form of debt – yours and mine.

WSJ: Some of the largest shareholders in Goldman Sachs Group Inc. have urged the Wall Street firm to reduce the size of its bonus pool, arguing that it should pass along more of its blockbuster earnings to investors, according to people familiar with the situation.

Uhhmmm…15% of the shares are owned by the Goldman employees – sounds like the 2nd tier of the pyramid are getting anxious.  Like a street gang, they battle for a piece of the turf.  Perhaps Goldman should do something for the 3rd tier too.

Fattest Cat Bets Against Dollar (and what we can do about it)

In 2006 John Paulson (of no relation to Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson ) bet that the sub-prime mortgage market would tank and housing prices would fall on a national scale, according to a new book The Greatest Trade Ever by Greg Zuckerman. He cleaned up with 4 billion dollars in personal gains, 20 Billion for his firm.

Wonder where your money went?

“John Paulson took it,” wrote Peter Cohen of BloggingStocks. Want to know what Paulson is buying this year? Gold. Betting against the dollar is his latest ploy and so far seems to be working. Ummmm…this means that the rest of us are basically screwed, again.

Paulson’s investing lessons:

1. Don’t Rely on Experts
2. Bubble Trouble
3. Focus on Debt Markets
4. Master New investments
5. Insurance Pays
6. Experience Counts
7. Don’t Fall In Love
8. Luck Helps

Hey Kids, let’s learn from the master:

1. Don’t rely on Experts: They are the crooks. The Mexican Peso crisis was not caused by foreigners; it was caused by Mexican elite running away from their own currency and sparking a wider run. See Johnny Run….

2. Bubble Trouble: Further evidence is seen in speculative bubbles appearing in mundane fixed assets like land, minerals, and alternate currencies around the world.

3. Focus on Debt: If you have cash, you’ll lose it to inflation. But if you have debt, you’ll lose that too. If you have too much debt and you’ll go bankrupt. If you have too much cash and you’ll become equally broke. The trick is to hold just as much cash as you hold debt and when it’s all over, you’ll be no better or no worse off.

4. Master new investments: In the old system, if I trade a dollar for an apple, I lose the dollar but gain an apple. In the next economic paradigm, I share an idea but I still retain the idea; and currency multiplies – master the new investment!

5. Insurance Pays if you know how to play; if you can identify the peril, you know the probability that it will get you, and you know the consequences of the loss – you can “play” insurance. People must reorganize around an “insurance system” enabled by social networks that can influence these factors.

6. Experience Counts; While corporations are laying off older people, social media is capturing them in a knowledge inventory. We must develop, produce, and access this knowledge inventory.

7. Don’t Fall in Love: This means diversify and don’t be afraid to try new things. Innovation is the art of putting many different ideas, concepts or objects together and yielding new wealth creation. What better mechanism than social media.

8. Luck helps: Social media is like a cloud. Nobody can control and the only way to engage with it is to talk to the cloud. After a while the cloud will deliver rain, and your garden will grow. John Paulson calls this luck, we call it inevitable.

We, the people, need to introduce a new economic paradigm – nobody will do it for us. We may lose the dollar as a currency but we must not lose our personal ability to produce and trade our ideas, plans, and actions for the things that our families need to grow. Wealth is created by sharing. The Next Economic Paradigm shows us how we, as a society, can reorganize ourselves around an economy built upon social media. Sounds far out but it can be done today if we move quickly to understand the power – near absolute – that people can have in social media. If John Paulson were really smart, he would bet on us not against us.

Bovine Economics

Money does not represent gold, silver or oil. Money represents human productivity – yours and mine – otherwise nobody would work (i.e., be productive) in exchange for it.  Therefore, the words ‘Money’ and ‘Productivity’ should be synonymous and interchangeable – right?

Not so fast.  The following headlines were produced from a ‘Google News’ Search that contain the word “money”.  Next, I replaced the word “money” with the word “productivity”[in brackets].  The headlines don’t make any sense.

Yes kids, try this at home. If the headline still makes sense with the word swap, then you can enjoy the article in full confidence that you are being nourished with useful knowledge.  If, however, the headline doesn’t make a damn bit of sense after the swap, then you are experiencing Bovine Economics – suitable only for mushrooms and methane

Canada [Productivity] launderer shows holes in Vegas casinos

GM to start paying back bailout [Productivity]

Some taxpayers may have to return [productivity] from a new tax credit

[Productivity] talks in Afghanistan, says army counter-insurgency manual

“Stimulus” [productivity] going to 10 Ohio congressional districts that don’t exist

Our government is minimizing breast mammography to save [productivity] not lives

Prisons, education feel [productivity] pinch

[PRODUCTIVITY] MARKETS-US rates futures gain on Bernanke remarks

On Healthcare, Don’t Follow the [Productivity]

(Editor’s note: This series is an experiment and we’ll get better at picking the gems. Let me know if this is interesting enough for a weekly feature article)

The Great Currency Shift

Dollar FallI am seeing an increasing amount of articles and ideas related to an alternate financial system. The continued traditional media narrative implies that the current system is unstable and corrupted with insider deals, Ponzi schemes, bribes, and high profile acquittals of financial crime. The underlying age-old assumption is that the wealthy (merchant class) will win and the rest of us (the working class) will lose.

Keep in mind that the Mexican peso crisis was not caused by a foreigners, it was the internal wealth leaving their own currency for safe haven elsewhere that sparked the run on the Mexican Central Bank. The absence of a currency other than the dollar and the integration of the dollar among all other currencies is the only thing keeping that from happening in the US. But this may change.

1. Either a new global currency (like a garden salad of currencies and/or commodities) will arise as a ‘less-risky’ diversified alternative,

or

2. A virtual currency will arise from any number of new developments in social media.

Of course the first option seems far more realistic. But keep in mind that the nature of “Disruptive Innovation” is where the dominant player does not even see the disruptor until it is too late. The thing that social media has not yet figured out is how to capitalize and securitize an alternate currency. But we are getting close. After that, the rest is easy because money is simply a social agreement. What would you rather hold, debt backed currency or innovation backed currency?

Nobody can really say that the entire 65 trillion dollar world economy is not vulnerable to a disruptive currency. Please review The Next Economic Paradigm for a complete specification of Innovation Economics. Thanks!

Seeding the Clouds of Social Media

cloud seedingOK, so what part of: Governments and industries have no intention of fixing things that they broke are we still having trouble with? The climate change summit ended in a draw after Kyoto ended in party pooper. You can count the financial crisis, endless warfare, world hunger, slave labor, forest-to-dump consumerism among the same pile of sun dried bullshit. Does anyone still trust the “leaders”?

There is a way out. People need to organize themselves around their a social media financial system. This is actually a relatively easy thing to do. Social media is like a big cloud – a big gray mass with no beginning, end, center or physical boundaries. The only way to engage the cloud is to talk to it. If you talk to it the right way, it delivers rain. If not, the well stays dry.

Now here is the trick. As social media applications continue to integrate, a correlation between conversation and rain becomes “diversified”, the randomness begins to disappear. Steady, consistent, and sustainable conversations across a wide array of social action will delivers steady, consistent, and sustainable rainfall across a wide area of social landscape.

At some point, someone will notice the similarity between the social media rainfall and the behavior of large diversified cash flows. They will develop a financial instrument to “capitalize” this value because it has become predictable. Predictable value flows can then be “securitized”. Unfortunately, the dollar is a debt backed currency and a productivity backed currency will need to arise in its place.

China accuses the weakness of the US dollar for driving speculation bubbles in anything and everything of “value” that is not a dollar. The problem is that the dollar is the only game in town. If there were an alternate currency with superior representation of human productivity, all dollar denominated assets will be converted to the new currency. The entire 50 Trillion dollar debt pressure on the US dollar will convert to a productivity backed currency forced to drive innovation at a comparatively astonishing magnitude – almost on the scale of the problems that face humanity.

A productivity backed currency means that those who are most productive earn the most money. Think about that for a minute, then go read The Next Economic Paradigm.

Community Currency; Ithaca Hours

Ithica DollarsEditor’s note: I found this copyrighted piece from all the way back in 1995.  I find such history enlightening.  As a researcher it allows me to eliminate certain variables such as Social Media, 9/11, TARP, GWB, BHO, Global Warming, and a host of other firebrand influences on public opinion and action.  That said, the clarity is remarkable. Take strong note of the intention of fulfilling social priorities.  Today, as our corporations and government (federal, state, and local) continue to cut social programs in order to service interest on debt, the void on social programs will induce an inevitable condition; Community Conversational Currency.

by Paul Glover

Originally published in IN CONTEXT #41, Summer 1995, Page 30
Copyright (c)1995, 1997 by Context Institute

Many communities are giving up waiting on large corporations or government to invest or provide jobs, and are instead building on their own strengths and resources.

Social Currency; History Matters

historymattersHistory often provides clarity in the present. I was searching the term “Social Currency” and I found these two posts on a forum from all the way back in 2001.  The authors are quite explicit in their expectations of social currency in their present and deep into the future.

A framework for the future:

I find such framework to be useful in grounding my own opinions, expectations, and aspirations in the social media space.  The authors here are quite intimate in their views and we would all be remiss in not searching the hidden layers of our consciousness on the subject.  Enjoy.

(I left all the links in hoping that this would suffice for credits back to the source  http://everything2.com/title/social%2520currency)

Toyota Raises the Bar, Again

Adapted from NY Times article here

Last week Akio Toyoda, president of Toyota Motor, apologized for his company’s poor financial performance and possible culpability in the death of an American family for faulty product.To this, I ask – what is the value of this conversation in the age of Social Media and where is the associated innovation?

I worked extensively in Japan and apologies from CEOs are not uncommon.  When All Nippon Airlines and Japan Airlines had a few runway incursions – both CEOs (competitive enemies) appeared together on national TV nearing tears and ending with a loooooooong bow of remorse.  US media does not often get a chance to see this side of Japanese culture because of it’s intimacy, sensitivity, and frankly, it’s a little bit strange since scandal and corruption in Japan can be truly world class.

A few interesting quotes from Mr. Toyoda:

  • Toyota was shamefully unprepared for the global economic crisis and now is a step away from “capitulation to irrelevance or death,” said Mr. Toyoda, the grandson of the car maker’s founder. The company, he added, is “grasping for salvation.”
  • Toyoda declared the automaker had gotten too arrogant on “the hubris born of success” and the “undisciplined pursuit of more.”
  • “I want Toyota to return to profit, so we can start paying taxes and go back to contributing to society,” he said.
  • And in a peculiar show of deference, even the reporters gathered were issued an apology.
  • “I’m sorry I am standing on a podium, standing above you,” Mr. Toyoda told the seated audience. “But my seniors always taught me that I must stand when addressing those who are above me.”
  • ….and they go on and on….

And on the other side of the pond…

I am still waiting for a single US Banker, Insurance company CEO, or Corporate executive to apologize for mismanagement and failing to sell worthy products.  Not one – Sure, they will kowtow to the Congress or the courts, but not the people – all they need to do is look straight at the camera. Seat belts were not even installed in US automobiles for the first 60 years because they did not want to give the “impression” that automobiles were unsafe.

The devaluation of conversation?

“Sometimes, this apology business is a way to avoid taking real action or responsibility,” said Robert Dujarric, director of the Institute of Contemporary Japanese Studies at Temple University’s Japan campus.

“When you hear these long apologies,” Mr. Dujarric said, “It makes you want to say: ‘Don’t be sorry, just do something about it.”’

Now, enter Social Media:

Toyoda again has set a new standard.  This story is covered throughout social media space – most other big Japanese apologies had not.  The difference between the US automaker and the Japanese is stark.    Toyota intends to be the standard by which all other competitors are compared.  When most are trying to lower the bar, Toyota raises it.

That’s the value of conversational currency.

Coupon Search Engine – Are You Worthy?

 

Are you worthy ?

What if many companies dropped their advertising spend into a several different buckets of cash representing various lifestyle segments?  Now, suppose that the cash was distributed  to social media mavens corresponding to their social media reach in the lifestyle segments.  The advertisers and the amounts contributed to the buckets are fully disclosed.  The Social Media mavens are compensated by their Alexa rankings – again, fully disclosed and objective. The Social Mavens are simply paid to blog their lifestyle experiences with no contract or commitment to any brand, nor retribution for any assessment – just like always.

A new Financial Instrument

The debit card serves as a financial instrument modeled after the insurance industry that replaces traditional advertising with managed ROI risk. Of course, we are not the only ones trying to find a way to make the 300 Billion dollar per year advertising spend more efficient….

Sticky Coupons

The following Rueters article demonstrates that the coupon is not dead – nor is it paper anymore.  ASK.com will compile coupons and help people to find savings.  This is good for advertisers since more can be given away on the coupon because less is spent on production and traditional media.  This is also good for the consumer as more valuable coupons is more money in one’s pocket.

Feed the Entrepreneurs, feed the economy

Now we need to ASK – as the coupon value increases and the redemption time decreases and If the minimum wage is 8 dollars per hour – at what point can a person earn 8 dollars per hour cutting coupons?   Can a Social Maven, in fact, earn a decent living doing other people’s shopping all on coupons?  Why not?

***original article here********

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Ask, the search engine owned by IAC/InterActiveCorp, unveiled a new service on Tuesday to help consumers seek out coupons for saving money when shopping online.

 

The new service, Ask Deals, helps users search the Web for deals available by aggregating the best offers to a proprietary database of more than 1 million offers from national and local merchants.

 

Ask’s management hopes by having a dedicated “deals” tab on its search engine page the feature will become a natural destination for consumers looking to save money with discounts on goods and services.

 

Ask has added features such as helping consumers share coupons and deals through email and social networks like Facebook and Twitter. Users can also sign up for “Deal of the Day” emails.

 

The majority of Ask’s revenue comes through a search advertising partnership with market leader Google Inc, which brings up links of relevant advertisers in response to a user’s search query.

 

The Ask network was the fourth most-used search engine in the United States with a 3.9 percent share of all search queries in August, according to Web measurement firm comScore. Google had 64.6 percent market share, Yahoo had 19.3 percent share and Microsoft’s new Bing search engine had 9.3 percent share.

 

(Reporting by Yinka Adegoke, editing by Matthew Lewis)

1,000,000 More Become Invisible, Powerless, and Marginalized

The September Job Numbers are out and the trends are disturbing.  Millions upon millions of Americans are now wondering how they are going to safeguard the health and welfare of their families and property.  As these people lose their “money” they become increasingly invisible, powerless, and marginalized – except for one single, solitary, beacon of earthly influence.  Social Media.

Now, more than ever, we need to implement an alternate economy with an alternate currency.  I am not pitching some “anti-dollar-therefore-anti-American” platform, I am talking about what the hell will millions of unemployed people and their families do if they don’t have a functional currency they can trade for basic needs and services.

These same people have tons of practical experience, diverse knowledge, and worthy intellect – but no money?  It makes absolutely no sense that “productivity” should become so divorced from the value of a solitary currency.

We must come to the immediate conclusion that social media can be a fabric that binds the American economy.  If done correctly, Social Media can become the basis of an economy that rewards social priorities over Wall Street Priorities.  But ONLY if done correctly.

While the institutions around us falter, social media will increasingly duplicate – for all practical purposes – the functions of these institutions in our society.  As this transition takes place, we must lead social media in specific and intentional directions.  This cannot be a “traditional” market driven process – the market is what we’re trying to correct.  This cannot be a random process or else it will become reactionary and feed on itself.  Instead, Social Media needs to be organized in a manner that allows information, knowledge, and innovation – the basis of human productivity – to trade like a financial instrument.

What if I told you that it would be a lot easier than it sounds?  What if I told you that almost all of the components needed to build this new economy already existed in the social media landscape?  What if  I told you that Government, Corporations, and Wall Street will not do this for us.  What if I told you that the risk from not doing anything far outweighs the risk of trying to develop and implement an economy built on a social media platform.

Everyone must have a productive role in the next economic paradigm – employed, unemployed, communities, traditional media, even existing corporations and their advertising departments.  All of the existing infrastructure is in place – it only needs to be rearranged a little bit.  That is what The Ingenesist Project hopes to initiate.  We may not be 100% correct and the process that actually arises may be substantially different, but we need to start somewhere.

Meanwhile, here are the Jobs stats for September;

Headlines: 263,000 “jobs lost” and unemployment rate up to 9.8%.

That’s not good – there goes the “second derivative” argument. Weekly earnings are also down by $1.54, which is bad news too. But the Household Data is VASTLY worse than reported. Here are the month-over-month changes, and they’re in the realm of frightening.

Civilian Labor Force: 154,879,000 to 153,617,000 this month.

Employed: 140,074,000 down to 139,079,000 this month.

That’s a loss of 995,000 jobs, not 263,000, and the labor force contracted by 1,262,000 people!

THE INVISIBLE PEOPLE: The people “not in the labor force” rose by a staggering 1,516,000 in the last month (”unemployed” who have given up and exited the labor force).

Unspoken Communication and the Bottom Line

As a community developer for several websites, I go through lots of different information sources.  I am looking for stories and nuance that demonstrate how conversation behaves like a currency.  The more I look, the more I see.  The strength of the analogy is quite remarkable.

Unspoken Values

I can also see how the unspoken communication stores as much value as the spoken communication.  In the U.S. , there are race troubles, financial troubles, trust troubles, and confidence troubles. Many fears and anxieties can be accelerated by Social Media in unpredictable ways.  First, information riles people up quicker than facts can follow, and second, the shelf life is much shorter as issues are dissipated by new ones.  Much is left unprocessed.

The Micro-Trauma

What happens when important issues in life go unresolved?  The life of a soldier may offer some clues where events can happen faster than the mind can process them.  Perhaps the life of a child offers some clues where every day brings so much new information that all new events  are processed in terms of basic necessity.   Perhaps any traumatic event such as a divorce, loss of a family member, or victimization places us in the realm of the unspoken communication.  This is a protection mechanism, not a delivery system.

As the World Churns

Billions of people hustle off to work and spend their day producing stuff in order to earn imaginary money so they can spend imaginary money.  This helps things move from the forests to the dumps. They have no idea the sophistication of the micro-trauma delivery system that acts on how they process information.

The unspeakable drives our fears, interests and concern and influences how we process future information.  I am amazed at how two people will arrive at opposite conclusions from the same data and the inability for those two people to speak to each other rationally.  Advertisers, politicians. PR firms, and traditional media can deliver bits of information and dissipate them quickly leaving an unprocessed data-packets behind.

Opting Out:

I just closed my land line, canceled cable TV and purchase a subscription to on-line music radio that I play constantly.   I “hide” the fringe mongers on my FaceBook, and get my news from Google alerts, feeds, and sources that align with what I am able to process mentally and emotionally.  What I cannot process, I have a network of trusted friends who can process the information and guide me through the issues.  I am quite happy, in fact, as many areas of my life are improving; health, friends, family, productivity, and finances…etc.

There is a tremendous opportunity available in delivering the right information to the right people with the intent of helping them to successfully and completely process information.  This is more work up front, but the loyalty in the long-run is exactly what politicians, marketers, and news sources are competing for.  Instead they are killing the patient to cure the disease.

In order to monetize in the new economic paradigm, help the unspoken communication become speakable and then listen to your friends.

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